Memory Lane: The Sally Jones Tribute…

I was 12 when I first heard her voice. It was at a stake talent show, one where I was dancing with my young women’s group to songs from South Pacific (and I use the term “dancing” very liberally). I remember my mouth gaping open for a good 10 minutes as she expertly sang her way through a song from “Phantom Of The Opera” and I remember exclaiming to my young women’s group… she sounds exactly like the lady on the Phantom CD I have! I remembered her voice for a long while after. I wanted to sing like she did. My problem was I had absolutely no range and at 12 years old my voice had changed from the little girl squeaky voice to one deeper and full of hormonal inconsistencies. I had sung ever since the age of 2, but I had stopped at age 11 or 12 because I couldn’t reach the notes and it depressed me. It was about a year later when my mom suggested I try taking voice lessons. I jumped at the idea and when she dropped me off at the house of the voice teacher she had chosen for me, I had that familiar déjà vous moment when I realized it was the same lady I had heard sing the Phantom song a year before! I was a bit starstruck… and already extremely shy and awkward. I didn’t say more than 2 words at our first lesson, but she was kind and warm and made me feel at home, so I went back the next week… and the next week after that for the next 6 years. She became more than my voice teacher. She became a friend and a cheerleader for Whitney of the extremely awkward teenage years. She accepted me as I was and she taught me that singing was more than just singing the notes, it was about feeling the emotions of the words and conveying that to the audience. She said if you can do that, they won’t remember any bad notes you hit, they’ll remember how you made them feel. I took that to heart and remember those words every time I step up to sing. Over the years, even after I had quit taking lessons from her, we still got together to sing duets, she the soprano and me the alto. I was definitely the lucky one in the situation as she was so much more vocally gifted than I.

At a time where I had no self confidence and zero self-esteem, she was that person who believed in my talents and abilities. She did that for many other girls and boys in her 20+ years of teaching. A few days ago, at the age of 65, she lost her battle with brain cancer, the 2nd cancer go around for her. I know everyone who knows Sally Jones is heartbroken… heartbroken for her sweet husband Bill and her son Eric and his family. I will always remember her for her vibrant spirit, her beautiful voice, and how she made me feel… because she not only taught that to her students, she practiced what she preached. Thank you Sally Jones. You will be deeply missed.

Love,

Awkward Teeny Bopper Whitney
&
Still Awkward Adult Whitney

Click for her obituary and/or to leave a message to the family: http://www.allenmortuaries.net/obituaries/Sally-Jones-2/#!/Obituary

I’m putting this up for posterity. Pretty sure I shared this video several years ago, but it is one of the only ones I have of us singing a duet… back in the late 90s… and oh the fashion!

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LINDSAY’S UPDATE (AKA THE BLOGGING RETIREMENT POST)

Hi Whit’s readers, sorry I totally spaced last week. I wanted to do one more entry before the end of the goal I set. So I am sure you will all be glad to read Whit’s posts without my boring commentary! She’s much more entertaining!

I set a goal to loose 18 pounds in 3 months and I am down 14 pounds. I am 4 pounds from that goal. I have to still say that is a HUGE success for me! To be honest I never even thought I would get close to that as my past weight loss has been much slower.

So to finish off I wanted to share the 3 things that pushed me to my goal.
Set a goal
Be accountable to someone or something
Have a motivator of some kind at the finish line

My motivator is on Friday April 14th, We leave for Cancun. I absolutely DID NOT want to sit on the side lines and feel like I couldn’t get in the water with my baby! I do want to be in the water and be able to wear a swimsuit and participate with the activities everyone is doing.

That being said, I am not to a weight I want to be at yet. But I feel so much better than I have! So I am going to be happy and enjoy my time! On vacation I will not be counting or tracking calories and when I get home I will get right back on it to get losing the rest.

This is a lifelong process and therefore, whatever you start, make it something you can see yourself doing and living with for the rest of your life.

I look forward to hearing your progress it motivates me!

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You know how I know that BoBo and I are related? Because we’re both friends of chocolate:

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Hey errybody… look at all of my manimals!

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Oh Hey, April Fool!

Hey y’all… so, it’s April and that is always a good thing in my book… even if it rains 24/7. BoBo was here this past weekend and we sloshed through the mud on the canal bank like we were farmers with a purpose. Then, BoBo caked up his new shoes with 6 inches of mud and the party was over before it began. It’s always a party until someone gets muddy said the uptight OCD chick. He met our 3-year-old neighbor, Thomas, and they had a grand ole time loading up dump trucks with mud and dirt… until they started fighting over the bulldozer truck… and then it was like Jerry Springer with babies… except not at all like that and mostly crying crocodile tears until they got their way. Good friends.

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In other news, I ordered some prepackaged meals from a place called BistroMD last week. The purpose of it was to get me into a better routine of eating 3 square meals a day with more protein and veggies and less carbs. Let’s start with the pros… when you’re a single person cooking for a single person, in order to avoid wasting ingredients and food you basically have to eat the same thing for breakfast, lunch, and dinner all week… or at least I haven’t found a better way. With these flash frozen “gourmet” meals I ate a different thing every meal and every day. It was like I was like Oprah or something… except not at all like that because I had to feed myself… and I was not eating off of golden plates with platinum silverware. The meals all ranged from 200 to 400 calories and a day’s worth of food, including 2 small snacks came out to between 1200 and 1300 calories per day. Each meal was also 50% to 60% protein. There were some excellent entrees that I enjoyed and would totally eat again, case in point, this whole wheat bagel egg white and turkey sausage sandwich at around 320 calories.

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There were also some entrees that I had to gag down… and I mean literally gag down… like this concoction titled Broccoli Chicken casserole… which looked really delicious as a picture on the website with actual chunks of chicken and broccoli… instead, this is what I got:

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Some sort of pureed babyfood-like chicken and broccoli that made me feel like I forgot to put my dentures in before dinner. There is not a chicken chunk or broccoli chunk in sight, y’all!

There was also beef and pork… I have a hard time with meat… sue me. I’m okay usually with chicken and turkey on occasion (depending on the form it takes), but beef and pork are a different beast in the texture and taste department. So, while my goal was to eat more protein, I did not enjoy all of the proteins.

To sum it up… it was a good experience and I did order some more ala carte meals that I’m going to disperse into my days the next few weeks, but by the end of the week I went to Subway and ordered me an egg white and veggie sub instead of beef bourgenese or whatever you call it. That’s my kind of gourmet, yo… and they don’t puree it!

Exercise this past week was pretty good… I did 3 or 4 days of walking even when it was cold and windy and rainy and 2 more days of purposefully moving a lot more chasing BoBo around.

I need some updates on you all? How are things going over your ways? What goals are you going to set for this upcoming week?

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Lindsay must have gone into early blogging retirement. Like, I haven’t seen her send me an update in 2 weeks. I hope she got a great severence package from her blogging boss. Lindsay… Beuhler!?

I call this following montage, Baby cheesers… every time you say cheese or hold up a camera, BoBo practices his cheeser smile…

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Saturday, we had a surprise sendoff party for my nephew, Christian. After months of trying to get his leukemia in check after being sent home from his mission, he’s finally able to go back out and serve full time and will be leaving on Tuesday. He has to stay close to home so that he can be within a short distance of Huntsman Cancer Institute, but he’s super stoked to be going to Orem, Utah Spanish Speaking mission! This guy is a stellar dude for sure and we could all learn something from him about having a positive attitude in the face of adversity! Go, Christian, Go! In the above picture, I was videoing Christian opening the gift he was given and BoBo thought the camera was for him. Oh BoBo!

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He’s also learned a new trick called stick your finger up your nose to get attention! Oh BoBo!

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The Definition Of Hope…

Sometimes I get into a mood where I woe is me way more than my tiny violin can handle. Woing is only helpful if you have someone who doesn’t mind listening to the woing, and since that’s not a thing in anyone’s world and definitely not mine, let’s move on past the woing and onto the doing! I got into one of those moods last night… I blame it on near-midlife crisis or at least that’s what the tiny violin I sat on suggested. I’ve been thinking since (DANGER!!) about why I get up every day and I guess I came to the conclusion that I must have hope that one day something will go my way. I determined that has to be the definition of hope, starting over every day hoping to stumble into that pot o’ gold at the end of the rainbow. I guess hope also comes with the desire to work towards the things you want to be better or else the hopeful feeling would be squashed pretty fast.

I’m a rambler… kind of like Kenny Rogers, except he was a gambler… so basically not at all the same except that me and Kenny rhyme… and if you have no clue what I’m talking about you should be ashamed of yourself and need to immediately buy Kenny Rogers’ greatest hits and get yourself schooled, yo!

To sum it up… get up everyday, start over, work hard, and have hope. I guess if we have that in our lives, we’re pretty much set to do anything.

I needed a swift kick in the butt in the eating department this past week (exercising went well, but you cannot outrun a bad diet), so I found a coupon and I’m going to try a weight loss meal delivery service for a week or two. I cannot afford more than that, but I figure a few weeks would give me a good jump start into better habits and 3 square meals plus 2 snacks per day instead of my usual preference of turning into Bessie the Grazing Cow Family. Y’all stay tuned… I will blog about my experience as soon as my first week gets here in the next few weeks.

Meanwhile, how is everyone else doing? Successes? Things to improve upon? Happy First day of spring y’all! If that doesn’t give you hope, I don’t know what will!

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LINDSAY’S UPDATE:

Hello long lost friends! We took a week off. We are back!

Update: I am down 13 pounds and I am 5 pounds away from my goal. Then I will set a new goal for myself. How are you guys doing on yours?

This week I am taking on a 5-day workout challenge that one of those following the blog, Chelsea shared with me. It is on Youtube. The workout is on FitneseBlender and it is the 5 Day Challenge. It is 5 days of workouts that last about 1 hour. I am excited to mix up my workouts. I am getting bored of P90X3. So it is time to have something else to look forward to in the workout arena. It will be challenging and is only 5 days!

SO this week, I would challenge each of you to mix something up in your daily routine for 5 days! Whether it is decrease your carbs, increase protein, add weight lifting whatever it is and give it a shot!

Good luck!

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BoBo found some “dear” friends of his. Get it… deer/dear!? Oh stahp!! BoBo has also been really sick with some yucky stomach bug so send him positive vibes y’all!

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Plateaus and Willpower…

Hey y’all… nothing new over here… just snowing another foot as usual… same snow, different day. Laws almighty, Noah’s going to have to build me an ark before this winter is over. Y’all if anyone has Noah’s number, hit a gal up. I also would not like more than one animal on the ark and preferrably not something slithery or slimy, so forget this 2 by 2 crap right now!

I finally got back into the exercise groove at the end of this past week. I had to get an antibiotic on Monday after 14 days of crud accumulation that wasn’t moving anywhere. The doctor said it had turned bacterial, so I took a Z-Pak this past week. The sore throat is gone (hallelujah and knock on wood) but the crud still lingers… stubborn bugger anyway! Onward and upward. It felt nice to get back into moving and this week my goal is to focus more on tightening up my eating. More veggies and protein… less random crap.

How did everyone else do this week? Are we read for some Bermuda time? I think so. If anyone knows how to buy a free ticket, let me know… right after you get me Noah’s number.

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LINDSAY’S UPDATE:

This is my theme…..I am learning a lot about myself, positive and negative through the journey…This week has been a week of exploration of talking with close friends, relatives, fitness experts and family about their thoughts and advice on how to overcome weight loss plateaus and make progress. I learned a lot. It’s great to go out and gather the information and then take from it what you know can work in your life and lifestyle and how to apply it.

Our bodies are amazing. I have been obsessed with watching documentaries for a long time and last night as I was doing the dreaded search on Netflix for something to watch (which usually ends on me falling asleep). Last night I decided to click on the first one that sounded interesting and watch it in it’s entirety. So I watched, “The Barkley Marathons.” It is INSANE! People’s bodies are incredible! But what I took away from it was not just how incredible the body is but most of all how incredible THE MIND is! If you’ve ever watched this show I am sure you know what I mean by my question of: “How on earth did you not get in your own head and just GIVE UP?” There were so many times where the path they had was too scary, it was dark, it was excruciatingly long, there was no sight in end, everyone else gave up, there were only 3 left that registered for the marathon that didn’t give up, they suffered incredible pain, hallucinations, dehydration and I am sure many other physical and mental anguish not discussed.

So at the end I stared at the 3 that completed it. Completed almost 60 hours of running on no sleep and averaging 150 miles. And I wondered what do they have that the others didn’t? I wondered what do they do differently in their lives that gave them the ability to complete something that is so so so unattainable to most people?

We all have our own circumstances, challenges, races, mental pain, physical pains whatever it is. But why not you be the one to finish? Why everyone else but you? Why not me? So as you go through your week with whatever your facing, remind yourself not to give up! If you give up what will the road look like? As I ask myself that question my answer is, the road ahead may be harder but the outlook will be much better! So keep in mind to be happy on the journey and be happy you are moving FORWARD and be HAPPY that you are that person that has NOT given up! Keep going!

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PS from Whitney – If anyone who’s of the praying variety wants to send out some prayers and good vibes for my sweet BoBo he would appreciate it. He isn’t feeling very well after he had to go to the hospital from having jammed the end of a towel rod into the wall while it was in his mouth last night. Poor baby… don’t run with sharp things my buddy!


Lookit errybody… I went to this giant germ pit with my big bros!


There you go again, Baby… doing dangerous things!


Lookit… I riding in my wagon!


Nekked baby cheeses!

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Mrs. Trunchbull & Laryngitis…

Yesterday, I got gifted a ticket to Matilda the Musical (maybe you’ve read the book by Roald Dahl or seen the movie made based on the book). It was a cute lil’ musical (the kids were amazeballs)! Though, most of the adult people were 4-star jerks… even if they did try to humor it up. Mrs. Trunchbull was the tight-lipped, strict, jerky school principal who ate little children for dinner every night. She was played by a male prancing around in a fluncy skirt and a tight grey bun on top of his head, which made it even funnier. Matilda was treated like dirt by most of the adults in her life (all but her teacher, Miss Honey) and yet she still perservered and rocked her gifts of extreme intelligence and bravery. I’d give it 2 thumbs up even if I sat behind the wiggliest mom and daughter combination on the planet. The mom was wigglier than the 10-year-old daughter by far! If she sat in one position for more than 2 seconds it meant that pigs were flying out back. Which meant I was playing dodge the head game so I could see the whole time. I also got scolded by an usher for using my phone as a flashlight for 2 seconds to see where we were in the program. Nothing like being scolded like a kindergartner. You… go sit in the corner!

This past week I was sicker than the previous week… for 4 of the days I couldn’t talk in anything but a forced whisper (and everyone rejoiced to the high heavens). I still have lingering mucus head and a sore throat… going on 2 weeks now. Oh, the joys of cruditis germs y’all! Send me the inventor so I can whallop them with a stale bagel! On the positive side, the nightly coughing sessions have improved and I can now talk in a semi gravelly voice, so maybe I’m on the upswing? Progress… be it ever so small. Because of that, I feel like I put my healthified goals on the backburner. I skipped out on the exercise because I felt like I got run over by a dump truck and my eating was not the best, more anxiety based than actual hunger based, so live, learn, and improve the next week. I’m going to have my sore throat checked at the doctor in the morning and hopefully he can give me some antibiotics or whatever magical pill will magically make me feel like a semi human person again.

My goals for this week are to stay on my eating plan, drink more water, and move a lot more even if I’m not able to full out exercise until I get rid of this crud.

How was your week? What things did you rock at? What things could you improve on this next week? Onward and upward y’all!

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LINDSAY’S UPDATE:

Sorry everyone! I forgot to submit my post on time last week. I should have lots to say but unfortunately I don’t have a lot to report. I have only lost 1 pound in the last 3 weeks. It’s been pretty disappointing but it has given me the determination to do some research on weight loss plateau’s. So if anything today I will share with you some of the things I will be improving on this week that I feel hopefully will give me the change needed to keep my body progressing.

1. Drink 1 Gallon of water a day! I did this in the beginning and found it successful and lately I have not been doing that at all. Drinking that much water is a great tool for flushing the system, and keeping you satiated so I will be doing better on that and tracking that each day.

2. I also went ahead and recalculated my calories based upon the 10 pounds lost and my goal weight. This deceased my calorie intake by a very small amount. But it is a decrease in my overall daily calorie intake.

3. I will be increasing my protein intake. I have been using My Fitness Pal to track my food and I have been able to see that I have not been hitting my protein goals so I will be shooting for 136 grams of protein per day. Which means my 2 snacks throughout the day willl need to be more focused on protein.

4. Decreasing my fat intake. Now this makes me shudder. I hate taking anything away. But to be totally honest I will just be cutting out possibly around 5 grams of fat per day. That equates to a whole egg. So truly not much. But at the end of the week that equates to 35 grams of fat!!!

So as you can see these are very small changes I am making. But I cannot continue to do the same thing and see no results….changes were in order to be made! I feel my body is adapting to the food. I have been diligent about changing up my exercise every 4 weeks so food is what needs to be altered.

I would love to hear what you guys have done to overcome the “Plateau’s” in your journey.
Thanks!


Lindsay, Madre, & I at Matilda!


BoBo loves hims blankie!


He also likes to drag around the shopping cart I bought him for Christmas. Duh… if you’re going shopping you bring your own cart!


Riding lawnmower… 😛


Reading grammy a book!

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Mucus Head…

Hey y’all… coming to you from the space that is my gigantic head bucket of mucus. I caught the cruditis this week, starting with a super sore throat on Tuesday and then migrating to a super congestionified head space with a super sore throat and cough. Y’all… thanks to whomever passed that along. Best! Present! Ever! If you need me I’ll be living inside a humidifier… preferrably somewhere warm like Hawaii or the Hell fires, whichever is closest and least expensive to travel.

In other news, BoBo and Lindsay came to visit Wednesday through Saturday morning since Shayne was on a business trip out of town! Oh BoBo… you so sweet… and busy! We tried to do a daily shindig so BoBo could get his energy out, so I went to places I’d never been before… like that germ bucket that is now inhabiting the old Hastings building, a bounce house… and that other germified place called the Jump Zone. Three hails to Whitney for bringing her cruditis germs in with the other people’s cruditis germs! We taught BoBo how to say some new words like George the feral cat (or more like Ohrd) and bird as in flipping the bird to the lady who cut us off in the parking lot. JOSHING… GOSH… we kept it kid friendly. I then tried to get BoBo to do my homework for me… HTML/CSS language web site talk… laws, it’s like speaking swahili to a bunch of geeks.

As for my exercising and eating… the weekday eating went off pretty dang well. My routine was off and I was sick, so there were some days I adjusted my menu, but I stayed within my calories during the week. Saturday continues to be a struggle bug… get with the Saturday program, Whitmeister! I also only exercised Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and skipped out the rest of the week due to the aforementioned cruditis. Onto this next week. No use dwelling on the past when there’s a future to be had… countdown to March… 1 more week!

Lindsay Rae Howell did not send me her update… excuse you Lindsay Rae Howell… so maybe she will update y’all on her week in the comments. I do know that one night she made this concoction that included turkey bacon, chicken, and squash noodles. I’m sorry I had to miss that meal! I also know she is really stepping up her fashionable choices wearing around a Hello Kitty Onesie that I bought at Wal-Mart on clearance. The more you know… and no, Lindsay, I won’t post the picture of you wearing them… it’s better this way!

How was y’alls weeks? Did you have some successes? How about things to improve on? How would you rate yourself this week?


My lunch for this week was mighty tasty… that’s cucumbers, grape tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella with a dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, oregano, and basil. 232 calories per serving! YUM!!


Hey errybody… I at the germy bouncy houses!


So, Auntie Whitty… if I grab this giant Lego dude and you hold the door open, we’ll get out of here real fast like.


BoBo is part ape! He was really good at swinging on this rope without anyone holding onto him… video below!


CHEEEEEESSSEEEEE!!!

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You Are More Than A Body…

Hey y’all… welcome to Valentine’s week… aka made-up Hallmark, flower, and chocolate company holiday. I mean, really! In other news because of sewer flooding issues due to warmer-than-normal temperatures melting the 85 feet of snow we got and additional rain on top of that, the people of the valley have been asked not to do laundry, shower, or flush their toilets!! A.) I totally feel for people who have their basements flooded with raw sewage because that is possibly the worst nightmare on the history of this Earth… I mean, I’d have to leave the hemisphere to recover, but 2.) If I’d wanted to sign up to turn into Davy Crocket or Ma Ingalls, I’d have killed a coon and made me a hat years ago! City, dig into that brain for the option B idea! A girl cannot take 5 second showers for much longer!

Yesterday, I was asked to sing at a regional women’s conference. It was a great experience for me and I feel like it was something I’d needed during this time of winter and job search anxiety depression. It lifted my spirits if for a few moments. After the main session where we listened to author and speaker Ganel-Lyn Condie, we broke out into mini sessions and got to pick from a handful of classes to attend. I picked one entitled, “You Are More Than A Body”. It was a good reminder that while taking care of my body and losing weight is a good thing, I need to be at peace with it as it is now so that I can love it enough to take care of it. I don’t know if that’s ever a total possibility for me because I’ve spent so many years abusing it and hating it, but it’s definitely something I need to work towards, even if it is just to say, I’m thankful that my body is allowing me to be mobile and exercise and accomplish the things I need to in a day. Thank you, body, for that.

This week was mostly good on the eating and exercising front. I had a misstep one late night and my weekend was still not as tight as I want it to be, but I exercised 5 days and purposely moved more the 6th day, and I stuck really well to my menu I’d made for the week. Pats on the back, sailor! During the above-mentioned class, the speaker put this quote up on the overhead projector, and of course, I stored it in the recesses of my puny brain to share with you all!

Dieting is easy, it’s like riding a bike… and the bike is on fire and the ground is on fire and everything is on fire because you’re in hell! 😛

Inspirational quote of the week y’all!

How are you all doing? What are some of your successes? What are some things you need to work on? Do you have any tips or ideas that you use that could help the rest of us?

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LINDSAY’S UPDATE:

Happy Valentines Week crew! Through this experience it’s super important to LOVE yourself first and foremost! No matter where you are at with your weight loss goals. DOn’t let your weight or whatever it is you struggle with in life keep you from happiness! So Happy Valentines Day to you!

This week has been a bit harder for me than most. Because starting early during the week I got a sore throat. It has continued and is still haunting. I only got 5 days of workouts. But I stayed on my meal plan for all but one night. I had ice cream one night for dinner to help soothe my throat. It was fabulous 🙂

What I wanted to report most of all . . . I have wanted to go to a actual kickboxing class but I have been too embarrassed at the way I look in my workout clothes to go in a group class. But I decided it’s TIME to actually stop being so self conscious and go enjoy it. I love kickboxing classes (ones that are actual fighting classes not the girly punch classes). This was just that!!! It was killer hard. I tried a class called Fight Fit and one called HIIT Kickboxing. They kicked my trash! I LOVED every minute of it! What I loved most was the Loud music but also the other people working hard to motivate me and keep me going even when I couldn’t push anymore. That is what group fitness helps me to do. I didn’t have time to be self conscious I was working out too hard!

So This week I want to leave you with the bravery to go out and try something this week that you have put off! Put off for whatever reason it is! GO AND DO IT PEEPS don’t waste your days wishing!!!


Baby BoBo didn’t feel very good this week either, but his hair says hi errybody!


Come on guys… let’s get woggercizing!

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