Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Piedmont Park - Atlanta, GA
February 6, 2011
We had a fabulous time in Atlanta this past weekend. It was one of those times when everything just fell into place perfectly and we enjoyed every moment. I stumbled upon a fantastic new accommodation in the Virginia-Highlands area that was just what we needed both in location and amenities. I'm always hesitant to give away a good secret, but if you are ever visiting the Atlanta area and like us, are not interested in traditional (and very expensive) hotel facilities, check out Greenwood Bed and Breakfast. If you enjoy walking as much as we do, you are within walking distance of Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Publix, Kroger, numerous restaurants and the amazing Piedmont Park. Since our main purpose was to stock up on many grocery items not available to us at home, the proximity to Whole Foods and Trader Joe's along with having a full-sized referigerator in the apartment was a perfect combination!
Speaking of stocking up, can't wait to share one of the most amazing places I've ever been! One of our planned stops was the Georgia Farmer's Market, however when we mentioned that to David, our host at Greenwood, he suggested checking out the Dekalb Farmer's Market. It was only six miles from our place where the other market was thirteen, so we went to DeKalb first. Needless, to say, we never made it to the other one. Now granted, to some of you, I may sound like country come to town, but this place was incredible. If you couldn't find it there, IMHO, you don't need it!! We came home well stocked with healthy fruit, veggies, whole wheat grains of several varieties, coffee, cheese, treats for Mr. B and several new things to try. Everything is labeled as to where it came from and many are constantly resupplying bins. The only negative I could find is that they do not take credit cards. Now that I'm aware of that, it's not a problem, but could catch a new customer off guard. I suspect this trip to Atlanta will become a regular event even if I have to go on my own. It's just worth it to get such great stuff at really good prices.
We got all that out of the way on Saturday because Sunday was forecast to be a gorgeous day and it did not disappoint. We took a very long walk through the neighborhoods around our place and on into Piedmont Park. By the time we returned in late afternoon, I was exhausted (still don't have my stamina back) and Mr. B was ready for a nice long nap. We made the decision to get comfy, stay in for dinner (delicious whole wheat veggie pizza we'd bought at the market), and watch some TV. I hate to admit it, but neither of us had any interest in the Super Bowl. Since I am a self-admitted female sports addict, that may be surprising, but Pro Football is my least favorite and unless there is someone with the last name of Manning playing, I find it hard to follow along. We did watch my much loved Tennessee Vols lose in overtime to a not-so-great Alabama team. Monday morning, we were up and away by 7:30 and Mr. B was happily in his office by 11.
I made good food choices this weekend and am continuing to lose weight very slowly. I made one poor decision at the farmer's market by buying a very small bag of Chocolate Covered Dried Cherries thinking I was doing so well, I'd be able to enjoy two or three at a time. Wrong!! The tragedy of a decision like that is that sort of "treat" just isn't that important to me. Walking away and not buying them wouldn't have been difficult - I'd have immediately forgotten them. I am getting so much better, but must continue to develop strategies for making the right decision at the point of impulse.
My friend, Karen at Waisting Time had a terrific post this morning on "words." Ironically, in my morning devotions just before reading her post, I came upon the following verse in Psalm 116, "God takes the side of the helpless; when I was at the end of my rope, he saved me. I said to myself, relax and rest. God has showered you with blessings." I've found myself using the word "calm" a lot recently in trying to describe how I'm feeling with respect to eating and food. Even in the face of illness and a round of Prednisone, I kept my cool and had success. But I'm here to tell you, in the past six months, I have truly been at the end of my rope with these 30 pounds and the intense desire to have them GONE. And today, those words "relax" and "rest" really hit home when I first read them, but then when I read Karen's post, it was like "o.k. you might not have fully heard it the first time, so hear it again." And here is what I heard: I AM helpless on my own. I WAS at the end of my rope. I WILL relax into this new calm and enjoy the journey. Rest has many meanings. It is not something I'll ever be able to do in the sense of letting down my guard and returning to previous unhealthy eating habits. But it is something that goes hand in hand with the satisfaction of goals achieved and lessons learned.
During those long days when I felt so rotten, I had ample opportunity to reflect on blessed I really am. I spend way too much time fretting over food and weight, and not nearly enough time taking advantage of the blessings (people) all around me. Yes, RELAX and REST! I plan on doing just that!