Putting My Mom on a Diet: Week 14 Meal Plan and Weigh-In

by Andie Mitchell on September 23, 2013

For new readers, here’s a brief refresher: I’m putting my mom on a diet, here is the plan I designed for her, and here are her weekly updates: week 1week 2week 3week 4week 5week 6week 7week 8,week 9week 10week 11week 12, week 13. Welcome!

 

Monday

Breakfast: Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin (160) + 1 tablespoon Teddie all-natural peanut butter (100) + 1 banana (100) = 360

Lunch: 1 Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Lavash Bread (100) + 3 ounces Dietz & Watson maple-glazed ham (90) + 1 ounce Hoffman’s sliced cheddar cheese (110) + 2 teaspoons yellow mustard (10) + lettuce and tomato (15) = 325
+ 1 cup red grapes (60) = 385

Snack: 1/2 ounce walnuts (about 12 = 100) + 1 ounce Pink Lady apple (100) = 200

blt

Dinner: BLT
2 slices whole grain bakery bread (200) + 1 tablespoon mayonnaise (90) + 4 slices hickory-smoked bacon (140) + lettuce and tomato (15) = 445

Dessert: Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1540

….

 

Tuesday

same B, L as Monday

Snack: Pink Lady apple (100)

pot roast

Dinner: 4 ounces slow cooked pot roast (~60 calories per ounce (240) + ~60 for sauce = 300) + 1 1/2 cups potatoes and carrots, cooked with the pot roast in the slow cooker (~250) + 1/2 cup steamed green peas (60) = 610

Dessert: Skinny Cow Salted Caramel Pretzel Frozen Candy Bar (160)

Total: 1615

….

 

Wednesday

same B, L, S as Monday

cheeseburger

Dinner: Bunless cheeseburger (4 ounces cooked 85% lean ground beef (60 calories per ounce = 240 total) + ½ ounce Cheddar cheese (50)= 290) + 1 Parker House roll (120) + 1 1/2 cups zucchini, summer squash, and cherry tomatoes (~30) sauteed with garlic in 1 teaspoon olive oil (30) + 1 ear corn on the cob (~100) = 570

Total: 1515

….

 

Thursday

same B, L as Monday

No snack

Out to dinner: Bunless cheeseburger (8 ounces of 85% lean ground beef = 480 + 100 calories for 1 ounce of cheese =580) + 2 tablespoons ketchup (40) + side salad (~100 including dressing) = 720

Total: 1465

….

 

Friday

Breakfast: 1 1/2 cups Special K Red Berries (165) + 1 cup 1% milk (110) = 275

Out to lunch: Grilled chicken wrap with lettuce, tomato, and yellow mustard (500)

baked haddock

Dinner: 1 serving Butter Crumb Baked Haddock (substituting haddock for cod = 300) + 1 1/2 cups roasted butternut squash and red potato (oiled, salted, peppered = 250) = 550

Dessert: 1 Skinny Cow Salted Caramel Pretzel Frozen Candy Bar (160)

Total: 1485

….

 

Saturday

Breakfast: 1 1/2 cups Special K Red Berries (165) + 1 banana (100) + 1 cup 1% milk (110) = 375

Lunch: PB&J Wrap: 1 Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, & Whole Wheat Lavash (100) + 2 tablespoons natural peanut butter (200) + 2 tablespoons Bonne Maman strawberry preserves (100) = 400
+ 1 cup red grapes (60) = 460

Out to dinner: Grilled chicken salad with honey mustard dressing (~600)

Dessert: Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich (150)

Total: 1585

….

 

Sunday

No breakfast; Mom slept in.

Lunch: 1 Joseph’s Flax, Oat Bran, and Whole Wheat Lavash (100) + 3 ounces all-natural turkey breast, thinly sliced (90) + 1 ounce sliced Cheddar cheese (100) + 2 teaspoons French’s honey mustard (20) = 310
+ 1 cup red grapes (60) = 370

turkey dinner

Dinner: 4 ounces roasted turkey (from a whole roasted bird, ~160) + 1/2 cup mashed potatoes (~200) + 1/2 cup mashed butternut squash (buttered and brown-sugared = 150) + 1/2 cup steamed green peas (60) + 1/4 cup cranberry sauce (110) + 2 tablespoons gravy (~50) = 730

Dessert: Skinny Cow Salted Caramel Pretzel Frozen Candy Bar (160)

Total: 1260

….

 

Week 14 Weigh-In:

Starting Weight: 210

Week 1 Weight: 201.4 (down 8.6)

Week 2 Weight: 199.4 (down 2.0)

Week 3 Weight: 199 (down 0.4)

Week 4 Weight: 196 (down 3)

Week 5 Weight: 194.4 (down 1.6)

Week 6 Weight: 193 (down 1.4)

Week 7 Weight: 192 (down 1)

Week 8 Weight: 188.8 (down 3.2)

Week 9 Weight: 187.6 (down 1.2)

Week 10 Weight: 186.4 (down 1.2)

Week 11 Weight: 186.4 (same)

Week 12 Weight: 186 (down .4)

Week 13 Weight: 183.6 (down 2.4)

Week 14 Weight: 183.2 (down .4)

Total Pounds Lost: 26.8 pounds

 

This week, Mom wanted to write a bit about the things I talked about in my Life Post.

 

“I want to start by saying that this piece is just to explain my way of doing things and to share how I’ve felt about certain situations. It’s really not intended to be anything other than an explanation of who I am.  Secondly, as always, thank you for your fantastic comments and beautiful support.

In my first marriage to Andrea and Anthony’s father, I had to take a lot of control of many situations.  One very frustrating thing for me was the wasted talent that my husband Robert lived with.  He was everything to me and I relied heavily on him always being so strong and dependable.  He worked as a Graphic Design Artist, and was very talented in all artistic abilities.  He was intelligent and well read.  He could carry on a conversation with anyone and he never ever lost an argument.  I spent my early married life encouraging him to continue schooling, maybe to go on for an engineering degree, because I knew he could do it, as he had no problems with school work.  He did attend college for a while and always managed to get A’s.  There was nothing he couldn’t do.  He fought me tooth and nail about this and never listened to me.  He constantly told me that more schooling was unnecessary and he didn’t need it.  He remained stagnant and this killed me.  How do you watch someone who you have so much faith in, who you pull so much inspiration from, just do nothing?  Later I realized that I should have taken his opportunity and done something for myself, like gone to school, because I see now that I had the energy and determination that he lacked.  Because of a terrible childhood, he never felt good about himself.   I was lucky to have come from a wonderful home with very determined parents who pushed you to be your best.

Along comes Andrea (we won’t get into Anthony because I don’t want to invade his privacy.  He is a wonderful son and I am very proud of him.)  Andrea got her artistic ability from her Dad. She can draw anything, paint anything, create anything, and at times, she has blown me away with her art work.  Sometimes she’d draw things for other people, and I would be so amazed by them that I had to keep them for myself.   This ability for art came in very handy when she was in school.  She would spend hours doing projects and always got a good grade.  Her art skills proved very helpful when she worked behind the scenes of Shutter Island and How Do You Know?  She also has a beautiful voice and at a young age I decided to do something with that talent.  I enrolled her at the Boston Conservatory of Music.  She fought me hard every week when she had to go for her lessons, and never sang in front of me from that day forward.  Heartbreaking for me, as I would sit quietly and grab any opportunity to hear her sing at home or in the car, when she didn’t realize that I was listening.  One day, she decided that maybe she could use that singing ability and told me that she would try out for American Idol, as auditions were taking place in a town fifteen minutes from where we lived.   That opportunity came and went, she did nothing, and I was disappointed, but I did not say anything to her.  The next year she told me she was going to try out for American Idol and she really convinced me that this time she meant it.  So I researched it with her and made plans, took time off from work, reviewed hotels and travel and was so excited that she was taking on this challenge.  Two days before we were going to go she changed her mind and no doubt got cold feet.  Her stage fright is paralyzing. I told her nicely that we were going and we would make the best of it.  My feelings at this time were simple: as a parent, if you don’t push your kids (for some things) they will let you know when they are older that you didn’t support them; I was not going to let this happen.  Andrea and I set out for a long drive to Philadelphia, and had the time of our lives.   We stood in 10 hour lines for two days in a row, one to get an audition number and one to wait for her chance to audition.  I will say this that what you see on TV is a far cry from what a contestant goes through.  It is tiring and trying at best.  They have you spend long hours and it is a three day commitment.   You have to sing the chorus of the song, and if they like you they let you sing twice.  They let Andrea sing two songs, as the guy no doubt thought she had a nice voice, but was terribly nervous.   She did not get picked but she tried out and I am so proud of her for taking that chance and allowing me to be there with her.  As I said, we had a great time despite the outcome and really loved Philadelphia and everything we saw in the three day excursion we planned — we stayed at a nice hotel in downtown Philly and ate at awesome restaurants.  We laughed and we endured, and I never even heard Andrea sing a note that whole time as the audience does not get to hear the singers as we have to sit so far away in the stands.

All her life, Andrea was a good student and when she went to school UMass Amherst, she was accepted into the Commonwealth College, the honors program.   I was so happy, until Andrea informed me that she wasn’t going to bother accepting this honor because it wasn’t that important to her.  Wasn’t I so sad that she didn’t realize the significance of this achievement.  I did push on this one, but I lost.  I will forever regret that she missed this opportunity.

Andrea was very fortunate to meet a wonderful person who introduced her to and gave her the opportunity to work behind the scenes of film.  Lori is a beautiful, kind-hearted person who took a chance on Andrea. She worked hard, long days into nights and many weekends, but enjoyed each and every day.  She meet great people. She learned a lot.  She got to do so much, and worked directly with Academy Award winning production designer and set decorator.  She met the actors (Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo are my favorites) and had the chance to talk with them and watch them film scenes.  I loved every story she shared with me, every fun detail, and every thing she got to do for the film.  Each night she would tell me about her day and I was not only so happy for her excitement but delighted to hear her stories.  This was perfect because here was my artist daughter working in an artistic environment — how appropriate.  Lots of times, she had to change cities and relocate on short notice, and her stepfather and I moved her and loved the new challenges that brought to her life.  Fortunately I didn’t have to have anxiety as Daniel would be moving with her to Philadelphia and Connecticut.  She enjoyed herself and I enjoyed seeing her so involved in something that I know she excelled at.  When the last film ended abruptly due to behind the scenes changes, she decided to stop doing this line of work and told me that she was going to start a blog.  What the heck was a blog?  I wasn’t too happy as I didn’t see this as a chance for her to do something important with her life.  I didn’t know any better as I barely use the computer at all.  I just wanted my little girl to work toward a future that included health insurance, a retirement plan, and so on.  Well I was wrong, the blog is a passion for her and isn’t that what you want for your child? For them to do something that they’re passionate about?

I admit I am controlling in some ways, but I had to be.  I am somewhat of a perfectionist, but I never expect more than I can do from anyone, not even my children.  I want the best for them!  I did not expect the sadness and tough times that they were dealt with as young kids.  I regret that I missed many opportunities with them.  I had to work a lot and Andrea and Anthony suffered for that, big time.  I spent any and all free time trying to make it up to them, and will forever be trying to do that.  When your children are sad, you rack your brain trying to think of what you could have or should have done better.   I am so lucky that Andrea (despite the depression) and Anthony never took the wrong road and always strove to do the right things.   Andrea is 100% right about how I have high expectations for her!  I do.  I see things that she doesn’t see in herself, I know about her talents, and her shortcomings.  I only want what I know she wants and I will never ever stand in the way of her happiness.

I love you, Francie, and will always be proud of you for going after your dreams!!!!!!!

Maryellen”

 

Andie note: Mom, thanks for this. I hear you. I get you. I love you.

Everyone, Mom and I are going to be super normal from now on (but probably unsuccessfully) and shift the spotlight back to food, weight loss, and some new recipes. We have to refrain from talking about ourselves in such crazy depth for a little while, because I can’t even handle how much of us is out there, flapping in the wind right now. I’m having a vulnerability hangover.

 

CLICK HERE for a printable version of this week’s meal plan!

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Rachel C. September 23, 2013 at 3:02 am

The depth and honesty with which you and your mother write is simply awe-inspiring. Too often when we read blogs, we only get to see other’s “highlight reels” so to speak. Why their life is so great, how amazing they feel. And I love to read that, but only if its real, and too often I feel it’s not. To open up, invite others in to see the not-so-happy parts like you do, the “behind-the-scenes” footage, I can imagine is one of the hardest things to do. You can’t see your readers, so you have no way of knowing how they’ll react. Let me tell you, I think I speak for all of your readers when I say the very reason I love your blog so much is because it’s so honest. Thank you for opening up and not being afraid to be real. I’ve lost 65 pounds and am in the process of learning to maintain, and I cant tell you how many times I read your weight loss blogs just to know that I’m not the only one learning to do this. Losing the fear of weight gain, loving foods I’ve always known as “bad”. So again I say, thank you Andie. Articles like these are one of the reasons your blog is my favorite one out there.

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Laura Brooke Allen September 23, 2013 at 5:59 am

When I’m out with my husband, I often find myself re-capping parts of your story- your triumphs, your struggles that really stayed with me. “You know Andie Mitchell?” He knods, listening quietly for my most recent thoughts. I teared up when I shared your story about the hotel room, staring at the ceiling. He nodded, sad. “I really care about her!” I thought he’d tease me. “I can see that.” And then, himself concerned, having strongly identified with stories I’ve shared about your mission to help your mom- (oh, how he wishes he could help me). “What did you write and say?” “I thought I’d wait until she got settled in in NY.” More nodding. Allen love over you. You have accomplished great things. You will accomplish more. If you didn’t, or don’t, I wouldn’t love you any more or less. I love just love you. Freedom, baby, walk in freedom. Walk out today in the knowledge of the great love for you. You are infinitely more valuable than you realize. Hug from Virginia, Laura

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Lori September 23, 2013 at 7:01 am

Thanks so much ladies for putting yourselves out there. I too am a Mom, concerned about my 20 something daughter. I really relate to Mom’s part of this story, and Andie, I so appreciate hearing your side as well. It has definitely given me something to think about. This has not been easy for either one of you, but I just want you to know that your honest words have meant a lot to me.

Thanks for all that you do Andie; you are an inspiration!

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kimberly September 23, 2013 at 8:40 am

This is so beautiful and deep and the fact that you both are allowing yourselves to be so vulnerable is so amazing to me. Although my mother supported, literally everything I have ever done, she also has very high expectations of me, and I know some things I have done, she wishes I would have done differently. I’m not a mom so I have no idea the things that go into being a mother, but as a daughter, I know that without my mom having these high expectations for me, I probably wouldn’t have done half of the things I have accomplished in my life. I think vulnerability is a beautiful thing. That when we allow ourselves to open up to people, even online friends from a blog who are virtually strangers, it allows growth for our own selves but also for the other people. I’ve read your blog for a long time, and I can surely tell you that it is a beautiful place. Your passion, energy, realness, these are all something that many blogs don’t have. Your relationship with your mom is so inspiring, especially since your story sounds a lot like mine. Maryellen, you too have made great progress, and I wish you only great things.

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Mandy September 23, 2013 at 11:50 am

First of all Congratulations to Maryellen on continuing on your healthy path! I am forever jealous of your dinners! Second, you have raised an amazing daughter….her weight loss story inspired me to take control of my own health…to date I am down 74.4 pounds…I go back often to read Andrea’s honest and insightful posts about her own journey. Andrea, I am more thankful for this blog than you will ever know. Thanks for your honesty, insight, humor and tasty recipes. I wish you both all the best!

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LG September 23, 2013 at 12:20 pm

I’m going to go ahead and be blunt with this, because I can hid behind the intranets somewhat. :0)

I was pushed nonstop into tennis when I was younger. I admit I had some natural talent for it, but I was driven so hard that I quit tennis after high school and didn’t pick up a racquet for about five years. And I developed anorexia. I’m the one who tried to “measure up”, while my older sister, decided early that she couldn’t measure up no matter what. Queue her depression, laziness, and even attributes similar to FAS (I hear this is not uncommon with critical parents, according to Kevin Leman). Something makes me think that having my home function as an “achievatron” instead of a safe haven is bowing to the idol of success. I’m hoping to break this generational curse with my kids. What’s really important in this life?

Perfectionism is worth getting counsel for. So are co-dependency issues…but I admit I only have casual knowledge of this. The book “Boundaries” was super helpful for me when relating to my parents, and our relationship is now pretty good (but no longer overbearing, thank God). Anyway, there seems to be many layers to your family…

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Theresa September 23, 2013 at 12:57 pm

I recognize so much in the dynamic between you and your mom. The mother who just wants all of the best things in the world for her daughter. The perfectionist daughter who feels like no matter what she does, it’s never good enough. For me, it was being pushed to excel at violin. Did I enjoy playing on some level? Sure, much as I’m sure you enjoy singing on some level. Did I want to put whatever talent I may or may not have out there for the whole world and turn it into a career? Hell no. It took my mother years to realize that. Just because you’re good at something, just because you love something, doesn’t mean you have to make a career out of it. I was also self-employed for a time, working as a freelance web developer. I can’t tell you how many times my parents told me I needed to get a “real” job, because to them a “real” job was one where you punch a clock, get a stead paycheck, and bring home health insurance. It certainly wasn’t a “real” job for me to be sitting in front of a computer all day at home, regardless of how much money I was making.

But it sounds like, much like me and my mom, you and your mom are coming around to accepting and loving each other for who you really are. That’s one thing I have really loved about getting older. You’ve gotta do you, Andie, with all the triumphs and failures that come with that. No matter what your mom dreams for you or how much she pushes, and no matter how well or poorly things turn out, just trust that she’ll be there at the end of the day to hug it out.

Thanks for sharing both sides of your story with us :)

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Rocio September 23, 2013 at 1:14 pm

I agree 110% with Rachel’s comment. I understand why it must be so unnerving to share so much about yourself. I would feel the same way. Thank you for sharing with us anyways, we love reading you. Your blog is the blog that started me out in the blogging world. By blogging world I mean reading other people’s blogs haha.
Mary Ellen you are a wonderful writter just like your daughter.

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abby September 23, 2013 at 1:31 pm

I didn’t know you auditioned for AI in Philly! In that case, we met before How Do You Know?, since I was the floor PA at auditions, and spoke to literally nearly every single contestant who tried out, telling them which line they should get in. Unless you happened to go through on one of my extraordinarily rare meal or potty breaks, that is.

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Hootie September 23, 2013 at 4:16 pm

Love you both! I am glad this dinner party has a variety of conversation topics :) If I was only allowed to talk about food at Dinner I would be V. Sad :( I am glad you are both being true to yourselves :)

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Anna September 23, 2013 at 9:18 pm

I love you guys. You are both so very lucky to heave one another. It’s such a beautiful thing. Thanks for letting us in and sharing more than just food and weigh-ins (although great too!).

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Elizabeth September 23, 2013 at 9:26 pm

Looks like it’s working for the weight loss! Way to go!

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Becky September 24, 2013 at 1:35 am

Mary Ellen, you and I are the same age and have a similar background. My daughter is Andrea’s age; my ex-husband (her father) also had talents that he was afraid to use fully. The difference between us is that I myself have never been ambitious; it is much more my style to be unconditionally supportive, and my mantra is, “Whatever makes your life happier.”

It backfired with my ex-husband; he eventually thrived much more with his much bossier second wife.

My daughter, on the other hand, has thrived with the unconditional support. She was also heavily involved in creative pursuits (majored in art and theater), but eventually found business to be a better fit for her. If she’s happy, I’m happy. My daughter, I think, is a lot like Andrea; insanely smart and almost unhealthily close to me. Whether or not she says so, I know that a huge portion of her self-esteem is tied into whether I see her as being a success.

Being a writer is an honorable calling, especially for one with such a gift as your daughter. PLEASE support her and trust her in this effort. We live in a culture that has completely redefined itself in the blink of an eye with the internet and social media. I have a friend whose blog has led to a career in Hollywood writing for the movies. The blog-writer named Pioneer Woman has 2-3 cookbooks in print and a show on The Food Network as a result of her blog. Great things are possible.

And to my mind, she has already done great things. Has touched so many lives, more than you or I could imagine touching. So she didn’t take the honors course in college? My daughter didn’t, either, although she was invited… and guess what… NO ONE CARES. It has nothing to do with a person’s success once that cloistered college world is over.

Please understand, I do know what it’s like to live vicariously through your daughter somewhat… I do it myself… but it’s not our daughter’s jobs in life to give us things to brag about. Not that you couldn’t do that already…

The most powerful words in the world are, “I love you just as you are, and I could not be prouder of you.”

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LG September 24, 2013 at 10:17 am

Agreed – excellent post.

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Maryellen September 24, 2013 at 10:53 am

Perfectly said, I totally agree with you. I am so proud of Andrea and do support any choices she makes. I just want my kids to be happy!!!!

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Chezzie September 25, 2013 at 4:11 am

Happiness is such a fleeting thing and so difficult to hold on to for ourselves that we should not carry the burden of having to make other people happy. To force a child into something for which they don’t have the passion to succeed themselves, is to force them into failure, this can have serious and lasting consequences.

We are all born with choices and should be allowed to make them, we should all lead our own lives, make our own mistakes, choose our own goals and chase our own dreams, when you are happy yourself it is very easy to make others happy. I speak from experience.

Good luck with your weight loss Maryellen, you have wonderful daughter.

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Andie Mitchell September 25, 2013 at 12:11 pm

Friends,
I have so many feelings reading your responses.
One is, thank you thank you thank you for your loving support. I find so much truth in your posts and I think they’re completely valid and worthwhile additions to what Mom and I have written.
Two is, how many mothers would be OK with their daughter writing about their relationship with such candor and sharing it with hundreds of thousands of people? If you know my writing, you know that I go about it in a way that kind of abandons the norms of boundaries, and in doing so, I expose a lot of myself. Here, I expose Mom in a way that might have been unfair. Because no matter how true things feel for me, nothing is ever a singular truth. Everything has two sides, two angles. I wonder if the way I’m able to express myself in writing doesn’t give me a bit of an upper hand to Mom; maybe she wasn’t capable of being quite as articulate in her response. Maybe you, as a reader for any length of time, know me well, and therefore care more deeply about me, and in a way, you’re siding with me.
What I struggle with now, is the perception of Mom that I may have created. Yes, I meant what I wrote, but I also didn’t write about my dad, who’s gone now, and certainly he had a hand in the perfection strain. Or the fact that children of alcoholics, studies show, tend to struggle with feelings of unworthiness. I don’t know if that writing, or any writing, encompasses enough of us and our unconditional love, our twenty-eight-year history, to really give Mom the credit she’s due. I just don’t know. I fear that writing anything would undervalue the way I know she loves and believes in me. I know she’s proud. I know that she values my writing and sees that having passion while doing it is what counts. When I left for Seattle, after having written the blog (kind of against what she would have wanted, yes) for a few months, Mom really did turn to me and say, “I guess I didn’t know what a blog was. But you are a writer. And you’re amazing.” In recent years, though, I think that she has struggled with the instability of a writer’s life. And the natural loneliness and isolation of that existence, when coupled with my depression, probably scares her more.

Again, I really, really respect and value your replies to Mom and my writing. Thank you for them, and for your honesty.

Andie

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Chezzie September 24, 2013 at 3:41 am

Excellent post Becky.

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Denise September 24, 2013 at 10:25 am

Andie, I love your site. I love the honesty that is posted by you, your mom, and your readers. I love the discussions that ensue from the posts.

How wonderfully supportive you are of your mom! You don’t want her to feel deprived – you want her to understand that a lifestyle change (ie. meal plan) does not equal “no, you can’t enjoy your favourite foods”.

Mary-Ellen, have you begun incorporating walking into your lifestyle change? I know you mentioned it in the past, so I’m curious to know if that change has begun. I walk part way to work and part way home every day. My husband meets me and drives me the rest of the way home. As someone with a busy brain that never seems to “shut off”, I have learned to use my before/after work walks as a way to enjoy the colours around me, to focus on the good in life and to leave stress behind.

I hope you are both having a great week!

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Maryellen September 24, 2013 at 10:59 am

No I have not really been walking other than walking my pug, Deedee. But I will start now because I have done so in the past and got myself down to 152lbs by doing so!

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Diane September 24, 2013 at 10:44 am

Must comment once again – you are both awesome people.

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Noel September 24, 2013 at 2:46 pm

Becky, you put the icing on the cake!!!

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Kirsten Leah September 27, 2013 at 3:35 am

You remind me SO much of myself. Just a few things that may seem familiar to you: My mom wanted me to try out for the volleyball teams at various universities and colleges where I’d applied. I didn’t think I would be good enough, and she insisted I go (we fought and fought about it), and we took several trips to the campuses for me to try out. I was offered several scholarships from a few of them–one full-ride–and told her again, no, I’m not up for it. I didn’t know what it was, but the fear of failure was definitely in the forefront of my mind. And then, having to live up to the scholarships I’d been offered…forget about it. I also never knew what I wanted to do in the long run, or what I would even major in.

After a few years of college with a meaningless educational focus, I decided I wanted to be a wedding and lifestyle photographer. It didn’t require a degree, just experience. So, my parents helped fund my new career and I did it for two years and became quite sought-after. And I hated it. So I sold all my equipment. And then I spent a long, long time wondering what to do with my life.

I’m figuring it out as I go, and I’m happy with my current decisions for my future. I–and everyone in my life–know I’m flighty, so I really want to make this work, and to finally be proficient at something I can be proud of.

I look forward to your mom’s weight loss updates and your life updates. ;) You’re both in my thoughts and prayers.

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Penny September 27, 2013 at 8:17 am

Thanks for sharing this! I am also in the path of losing weight. I am using the 5:2 diet and also the 5:2 fast formula. It has been going well and I think I can learn from this dishes. I could eat healthy even if I am not on my fasting day. I love you and I love your mom!

Good luck to you guys!

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Cathy September 30, 2013 at 4:45 pm

Thanks for this recipe. I think the long term secret ingredient to success with weight loss is great tasting recipes. I’ve often seen people give up after a week because all they are eating is plain salad. They need ideas like this!

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dovalyn October 1, 2013 at 10:17 am

Andie and Maryellen,
Volumes of books can’t express the intricacies of any one relationship. We all struggle with expression and perception. The one thing that is unmistakable in all the posts I’ve read is how much you love each other. I can’t imagine putting my personal life out there for everyone to read, interpret, and comment – but I’m oh so glad you take that risk. So thank you. The honesty that is the undercurrent in every post is greatly appreciated and is the reason I come back to read it. Just know at the end of the day, you got your main points across – You love each other and try to do your best by each other. At the end of the day, that’s all that really matters.
Much love to you both!

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Alexandria October 1, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Wonderful post. I know you are fighting the vulnerability but it is great that you two are sharing so openly and honestly about things. I’m envious. Also great progress on the diet plan! Bonus :-) Keep it up and work through the discomfort.

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Theresa October 1, 2013 at 8:57 pm

Wow bacon on a diet! looks super yummy all your meals. I’ve bookmarked it.

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Natasha October 2, 2013 at 8:53 am

You seem to have such a great relationship. I wish I had someone to keep me motivated and to keep my foot in the right direction. Keep at it girls and I wish you more success with it in the future also.

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T. October 2, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Oh dear, where is the week 15 update? I’ve been checking since Monday. Does this mean you’ve had enough of this blogging adventure? I hope not! I need your persistence to keep at this! I’m only on week 6 and I was hoping to count on you for inspiration through at least Thanksgiving!

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Janelle October 2, 2013 at 5:03 pm

Maryellen,

Thank you for sharing. I appreciate your perspective. And, although I’m not a parent, I imagine I would only want the best for my child as you clearly do.

Andie,

Hug your mom for me. Love you!

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Fernanda October 8, 2013 at 8:51 am

Andie,
This is the best blog I’ve ever read. I love reading and go though a book every couple of weeks, but the book I am currently reading is on hold because of this blog. I found the blog and started reading it because I am trying to lose weight, but I loved reading about your story. I think it’s easier to catch the attention of people who can relate – I really don’t relate, my relationship with my mom is very different from yours and I don’t know how depression feels, but your writing is still so interesting and touching to me. I’d say that makes a GREAT writer. Getting to see your mom’s perspective is just the icing on the cake.
When does your book come out? I can’t wait.

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