Journey to the best health of my life (yes, the journey includes olives)


Whitney’s big fat fabulous life

You probably know who Whitney Way Thore is.  Her dancing videos went viral.  She was the fat dancing girl.  She makes me smile.  Just because you’re fat doesn’t mean you can’t dance and doesn’t mean you can’t have fun!

Now’s Whitney is doing a reality show.  She’s so confident in her skin, but at the same time trying to better herself.  She is trying to lose weight, but she is not stopping herself from living.  I can identify with her in so many ways.  At the same time I want to take a page out of her book.  There are many instances where I do not do something because of my weight.  Whitney has reminded me that my weight shouldn’t stop me from living.

It is assumed that people who are fat are lazy.  That’s simply not true in so many cases.  If, like me, you have PCOS then this video will empower you and remind you that you are not alone in your struggles.  If you don’t have PCOS but would like a better understanding of it through the eyes of someone who lives with it then watch this video.

It takes courage to open yourself up to the world.  Thank you Whitney for putting yourself out there!

UPDATE: Unfortunately the YouTube video with the full episode has been removed. For those who are able to access the videos (USA residents) here is the TLC page:



Almost 2015!

Hello everyone!  It has been a while since I posted, but I promise you I am still alive and kicking. I had a couple of weeks off work and really enjoyed not doing much! It was my first staycation in many years. I enjoyed not being controlled by time. I enjoyed doing exactly what I wanted to do. I enjoyed staying away from the computer. I enjoyed going to sleep when I was tired and waking up when my body was ready. I really enjoyed The West Wing (yes, I’m a few years behind). The two weeks away from the office was wonderful.  I felt free.

On Sunday night I faced the daunting task of waking up for work. My body had not been up at 4:50 a.m. for two weeks. Although I generally enjoy my work, I was dreading stepping into the office.  In fact, I had been dreading it for days (maybe even 50% of my staycation!). I do not enjoy being controlled by an alarm. I do not enjoy having to get to the station in time for my train. I do not enjoy prepping lunch in advance. The freedom of the previous two weeks had passed and I felt that sinking feeling in my stomach.

Monday was not as bad as my sinking stomach thought it would be.  Yes, it took me a while to prep the night before. Yes, it was tough to get out of bed.  Yes, I ended up running for the train.  But, dare I say it?  I actually enjoyed having some routine back in my life.  I at a nutritious breakfast and felt energized for the day.  Lunchtime rolled around and I ate a very colorful one (mixed salad and kebab).  My two weeks of freedom meant all my regular planning had been thrown out the window.  I just ate what was on hand when I was hungry and, shockingly, it was not always the best choice.  Routine has allowed me to start making good choices again.  Before I knew it the end of the work day had come.  I smiled as I sat on the train because it was not that bad after-all.

My staycation reminded me to enjoy all the freedoms I have without allowing events I can’t control to take over my mind.  I must enjoy the moment because tomorrow will always come, whether or not I like what is coming.

2015 is around the corner.  I’m going to work on finding more opportunities to feel free, and to let go of feelings about the future that hold me back today.

Have a safe and wonderful new year celebration everyone!  And remember, enjoy the moment!


I was nominated for a Liebster Award!

I was having a really tough day at work and then I saw a notification on my phone.  It was from Nekaaar and she had nominated me for the Liebster award.  It made me smile and I was ready to hit my 9 to 5 again.  Thanks for brightening my day and for thinking of me!  I am humbled by your nomination.

As part of accepting the nomination I must provide 11 random facts about myself and answer 11 questions about myself provided to me by the person who nominated me.  Here goes …


11 random facts about me

  1. Die Hard is my favourite movie of all time.  I love a good action movie!
  2. I’m a short 5 foot 2 inches.  When I was in college that was average height.  Now it’s short.
  3. I’m very close to my mum.  I love her, I adore her and I admire her.  She’s a strong independant woman who followed her dreams.  She’s an amazing role model.
  4. My favorite colour is purple – any shade.  That explains my main blog color 🙂
  5. I love Thai food.  I coud eat it every day.
  6. I also love chocolate.  I could eat that daily too!
  7. I loved my wedding day and remember every single second.
  8. I love working out with weights.  I won’t lie – I love that I can go heavier than what people expect when they look at me.
  9. I was born in the UK and moved to Canada seven years ago.  I will always be British at heart (and plan to hold onto my accent forever!).
  10. I’m a huge Formula 1 fan.  Ferrari all the way!
  11. I was a back-up singer on one of my mum’s albums.  That was quite an experience!


Nekaaar’s question: Share eleven things in/about your life that you are absolutely grateful for

I’m of course grateful for family and friends that have stood through me through all my ups and downs.  I’m also grateful for opportunity.  I live in a country that provides me with all the opportunity that I could ever want to be as successful as I want to be.  I’m grateful that I have a wonderful husband.  I want my list of 11 to be about the things that I rarely think about.  Things that I generally take for granted.

  1. The internet.  I’ve met many wonderful people through my blog and I’ve learned so many things online.  I have access to experts that I would not have access to if it wasn’t for the internet.  I have found support in strangers.  When I suffered from a Pulmonary Embolism I was scared and didn’t know anyone who truly knew what I was going through, and what I still go through every single day.  I found friends online who know exactly what I’m going through.
  2. Fingers.  Fingers are awesome!  Have you ever thought about everything they do?  You eat with them, you write with them, you type with them, you hold things with them, you scratch with them, you can speak with them.
  3. Cameras. They capture moments in time.  I love photos.  I love looking back.  I love framing the photos of those that have passed, and it shining a light on all the wonderful moments we spent together.
  4. Well written TV shows.  Sometimes I just want to escape into another world.  A well written show keeps me focused and takes my mind of any worries that might be running around.
  5. Public transport.  We may all complain now and then, but it is how I get to work.  Could it be better?  Yes.  Would life for me be much harder without it?  Yes.
  6. Inventors.  There have been some awesome inventions in my lifetime.
  7. The fridge.  Talking of inventions this is one I love.  It means I don’t need to go to the grocery store every day or every other day.  It’s a big time saver!
  8. Hair dye.  I started turning grey in my late twenties (at the front on the sides).  I have dark brown hair (almost black) so it really stands out.  Hair dye makes me feel and look years younger.  Maybe one day I will be able (and will want to) carry off my grey hair, but I’m not ready for that yet!
  9. Dishwasher.  It took us 5 years to get a dishwasher.  5 years too long!
  10. Hair ties.  I have long hair and I go to the gym regularly.  I can’t imagine working out with my hair flying around and falling onto my face.  I would literally pull my hair out.
  11. Emotions.  I’m so grateful that I’m able to feel.  I love that feeling of joy when you just want to jump up and down.  I love the feeling of butterflies when my husband kisses me.  Feeling sad is not so great. I have felt sad to the point my heart physically hurts.  Those sad moments really help me appreciate the happy ones!


Rules of nomination

  1. Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
  2. Display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”.
  3. Answer 11 questions about yourself, which was provided to you by the person who nominated you.
  4. Provide 11 random facts about yourself.
  5. Nominate 5 –11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have less than 1000 followers.
  6. Create a new list of eleven questions for the nominated bloggers to answer.
  7. List these rules in your post
  8. Inform the people/blogs you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it.


My nominations

In no particular order.  Acceptance is voluntary 🙂

  1. Waiting for a baby bird
  2. Cupid or Cats
  3. Missing Peace
  4. Finding Balance
  5. Brickhousechick


My eleven questions for you to answer, if you choose to accept your nomination!

  1. What makes you smile?
  2. If you could travel back in time, what year would you travel to and why?
  3. What is your favorite quote?
  4. What is your favorite place in the world?
  5. Ocean or space?
  6. What is your favorite post that you have written?  Provide a link!
  7. Describe yourself in three words.
  8. How did you pick your blog’s name?
  9. What is the one thing you do every day, without fail?
  10. Name a goal that you have not yet met, but are working to achieve.
  11. What is your favorite season, and why?

I can’t wait to read your answers!


Waking up crying

Have you ever woken up crying? I have. In fact, I did this morning. I’m not unhappy right now. Things are good. I’m well on my way to completing Whole 30 and Neila Rey’s 30 days of strength. I feel great!  So why did I wake up crying?

I don’t remember my dream, but my first thought was losing my husband.  That’s all it took.  I imagined being in hospital and being told he had passed.  My heart hurt and my eyes filled with tears.  So, I guess, the love that I feel for him made me cry.  That’s not such a bad reason, right?  He is still here by my side and I hope we have many more memories together before either one of us has to learn to cope without the other.

One thing I’ve learned is that I am a worrier.  Not warrior, worrier.  I worry about the future.  About what might happen.  My mind takes me to worst situation and I wonder how I would cope.  Life can change in a split second.  I’ve seen it happen too many times.  I know I should enjoy the life I have today and not think about what I can’t control, but sometimes it is easier said than done.

Do you worry too?  Or are you better than me at enjoying life for what it is?  How do you keep worries about the future from controlling your thoughts today?


Remove limescale naturally [electric kettle]

If you’re anything like me then you use your electric kettle all the time. I love hot water with lemon and can easily have a few cups in a day. Every so often I’ll see limescale build up in the kettle. Limescale is the deposit of calcium carbonate and a residue left behind by hard water. If there’s too much build up your kettle will not heat effectively and you will end up needing to buy a new one. Plus, it will look yucky!

There is a really quick, effective and natural way to clean your kettle – with white vinegar:

If you have coils then cover the coils with white vinegar and top up with water to the max level. If, like me, you don’t have coils showing then add approx 1/2 inch in height of white vinegar and top up with water to the max. Boil the kettle and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Pour out the water/vinegar mix. Your kettle should look shiny new! It will likely have a strong smell of vinegar. To get rid of the smell you need to fill the kettle with fresh water to the max level, boil and pour out the water.

I have been using this method for years and it works every time. It’s cheap, safe and doesn’t take much effort at all. Happy cleaning!


Whole30: Day 1

As promised, my first day is done! Normally the first day is pretty easy right? I prepped on the weekend, and had all my food ready and planned.  I opened my fridge in the morning and it just made me smile.  I have a variety of freshly cut up and ready to eat vegetables which look so good.  I was ready to go!  I had my breakfast (eggs, a small salad, half a grapefruit).  That kept me going until lunch where I had some pork, a large salad and the rest of the grapefruit from the morning.  Then came the challenge.

Day 1 challenge

A few people at work went to get coffees.  Last week I told my colleagues that I was starting a 30 day clean eating challenge on Monday.  One colleague asked if I wanted something from Starbucks.  I said no, and that I was fine.  She came back with a coffee for me – one of the new ones for the season (caramel something?). She insisted I have it.  I reminded her that I just started a clean eating challenge.  She responded saying that I could just make it a ‘cheat day’ – everyone has them.  I’m not even going to get into ‘cheat days’ right now, and how I absolutely hate that term.  I’ll leave that for another post.  And a cheat day on day 1 – or any day for that matter?!  I don’t think so!

So, I thought, what do I do now?  How to I handle someone at work that is trying to sabotage my 30 days of clean eating?  It may be coming from a good place, but she is still trying to sabotage me.  I have real health issues, and may have even more serious health issues if I do not focus on clean eating.  I’ve been vocal about my 30 day challenge and I just wish that everyone respected that.  At the same time I did not want to offend her.  All to often ‘not offending someone’ has led me down a path that away from my health goals.

I decided I was not going to let the Starbucks coffee sabotage day 1.  I poured it down the sink.  I felt terrible because by taking the coffee and not drinking it I was not being honest with my colleague.  Maybe one day I will be able to just say no, and not worry about offending others.  However, when I evaluated my day I felt really good about the decision I had made to not break a promise to myself.

I will face more challenges over the next 29 days.  I hope I have the strength to make the right decision every single time.

Have you faced challenges like this?  How do you deal with it?  I would appreciate any tips!


Starting the Whole30 Program

I have spoken about the Whole30 program, and I’ve said how this changed my life. It truly changed the way I think about food. I think about all the diets in my life and this ‘diet’, this way of eating, is the one that makes the most sense to me. It is the one program that I know is filling my body with the goodness it deserves.

For those who don’t know, I completed my first Whole30 in early 2012 with amazing results. I have tried to do it again, but have never quite managed to finish 100%. Well, last night something clicked and I decided it was time. I’m officially starting Whole30 on Monday November 3 and I will finish it 100% this time. I plan to be successful.  I will follow the rules. I will give myself the best chance at success.

It will not be easy! I have lots of events over the month of November.  I could wait for a quieter 30 days, but that will never ever come.  There’s always something going on.  The time is now.

Planning is my friend. I need to plan my week in advance, and I must plan for the unexpected. A late night at work, impromptu drinks with colleagues, stressful moments.  I’ll be spending weekend making sure I’m ready!

It’s only 30 days, right? I can do this!