Archive | August, 2011

My week’s food & weight loss diary

31 Aug

Here is my food diary over my first week of dieting. I have interspersed it with photographs of some of the food I have eaten

Over the last few years, my weight has steadily gone up, a pound here and a pound there until I am now a stone heavier than I was 3 years ago.

In my life, I have never been smaller than a size 14 and over recent years this seems to have grown through size 16 to size 18. I am quite happy being 16/18 and I don’t mind staying between these two sizes but I worried that I might have grown into the next size, so something had to be done.

Many is the time that I have said that I would start dieting,  “After Christmas” or “After the holidays” and there has been many other put offs too.

We were on holiday in London from Sunday morning 21st August, until Tuesday afternoon 23rd August, when I made the decision that NOW was the time.

I got weighed straight out of the bathroom each morning and this is my food diary for the first week of dieting.  I didn’t get weighed every morning but when I did get weighed, it was lovely to see the scales showing less overall. Some days it went up but I realise a pound here and a pound there doesn’t matter, its the final result that counts

I am under no illusions, I know during the first week of eating less carbohydrates the body needs less fluids to process the food and therefore the initial weight loss is not all fat loss but fluids too. Nevertheless, don’t you just love it when it appears the efforts you are making are working!!

I allowed myself some treats each day and realised I preferred lager to chocolate or cake, so that’s what I had. Chocolate or cake is gone in a few minutes but I manage to make 2 cans of lager last all evening!

On the second week of dieting, I will add more carbohydrate but will mainly leave out fat but for this first week I stuck to mainly protein and vegetables. Each day I had 4 /5 cups of tea or coffee and 2/3 glasses of tap water.

Wednesday 24/08/11 Weight 12st 8¾ lbs

Breakfast            2 boiled eggs

Lunch                  Big pan of veg soup/stew

Dinner                 Veg stew again & 2 Clementines

Evening              2 cans of lager

                                                              Thursday’s food, soup & salad


Thursday 25/08/11  Did not get weighed.

Breakfast            No breakfast

Lunch                 Bowl of vegetable stew followed by a cottage cheese salad.

Dinner                Chicken breast with oven roasted vegetables.

Evening              2 cans of lager

                                            Friday’s salad lunch


Friday 26/08/11 Weight 12st 5¾ lbs   

Breakfast            Banana

Lunch                  Hard boiled egg & almost fat-free cottage cheese salad.  Apple.

Dinner                 Chicken breast with oven roasted vegetables.

Evening              2 cans of lager

Too much time on my hands obviously! This is my salad ‘face’ for Saturday lunch

Pork escalope & vegetables for Saturday evening

Saturday 27/08/11 Weight 12st 4½ lbs 

Breakfast            Banana

Lunch                  Salad with hard boiled egg and almost fat-free cottage cheese

Dinner                Pork escalope with carrots & home grown (by me) runner beans & cabbage

Evening            2 cans of lager

Sunday lunch of bacon, mushroom & stir fry veg

Sunday 28/08/11 Weight 12st 4½lbs 

Breakfast          Banana

Lunch              Bacon, mushrooms & stir fry vegetables. I had ‘seconds’ too.

Afternoon      An apple.  ½pt beer.

Dinner            Roast chicken with vegetables at Helen’ house

Evening          2 cans of lager

Sunday evening meal at Helen’s, chicken dinner with green cauliflower, runner beans, cabbage and carrots. Less gravy than I would have liked but thought it was too naughty to have any more!

Monday 29/08/11 Weight 12st 5¼ lbs

Shock horror!!

My weight has gone up not down. I am not deterred. I realise it is probably how fluids in my body are processing the foods and what is  ¾lb anyway? Neither here nor there!   Ok….. Onward!

Breakfast                   a bowl of strawberries

Lunch                        pork escalope with carrots, runner beans & cabbage

Afternoon                 an apple

Dinner                        lamb curry & boiled rice (at Helen’s & kicking myself that I forgot to photograph it)

Evening                     2 cans of lager

Tuesday 30/08/11 Weight 12st 4lbs

Breakfast            Weetabix and a banana

Lunch                  Half a tin of tuna and salad

Dinner                Shin of Buffalo, boiled potato, cabbage, carrot and green cauliflower (at Helen’s)

Evening            2 cans of lager

Wednesday 31/08/11   Weight 12st 3¼lbs

So my weight loss for the week is  5 ½lbs .

I realise that the first weeks dieting is the most rewarding and usually shows the biggest weight loss but I am so pleased with the results!!

Its just of getting your head into the right frame of mind and then its easy.

The hard bit was remembering I was on a diet. Its so easy when making food for other family members to eat the bit of cheese that’s fallen out of their sandwich or to finish of the last piece of toast Evie didn’t eat.  I just had to say NO!

On to week two……….

22nd August 2011 London Photos

24 Aug

On Sunday morning, Helen, Rod, Evie and I caught the train from Wakefield to London and by the way, quite amazingly, by booking the tickets in advance, managed to buy return tickets for £30 each.

We had scones and crisps on the train but were quite ready for lunch when we arrived in London so stopped off at the Pizza Express which was not far from King’s Cross.

I am mentioning this because Evie had such a lovely time making a pizza there.


We stayed in the Covent Garden area which is really handy for walking to lots of tourist destinations.  We didn’t go too far on Sunday but on Monday after having breakfast, set off in the direction of St Paul’s Cathedral.

We arrived at St Paul’s Cathedral and stepped in through the door so we could say we had been inside but as we hadn’t intended staying long decided against paying the £13.50 entrance fee.

Onwards then to the Tower of London. Stopping now and then for coffee and a rest.

Near the Tower of London and Tower bridge is in sight.

We walked miles……It was a lovely day for walking and eventually we came to the London Eye

and Westminster bridge

At this point it got busier than ever and I was too busy manoeuvring through the crowds and holding tight to my handbag, so that was the end of my photo taking for the afternoon.

10 things you didn’t know about me

12 Aug

I have been asked by a fellow tweep, to write a blog about ten things you didn’t know about me.

At first I struggled to think what to put down but as I got going I think I could write more …..

I would really love to be able to sing. I have never been able to carry a tune and there is only my Grand daughter Evie who says ‘More’ when I sing!

Age 8, I was pulling a three wheeler bike up Allhallogate in Ripon (quite a hill) with my 3yr old brother sitting on it, when my calf got caught between the wheel and the mudguard. The scar remains to this day.

I slept in rollers every night until the invention of heated rollers which I now put in my hair every morning.

Between the ages of 16 and 18 I had a boyfriend who was a talented artist who has gone on to have a brilliant career as an illustrator and cartoonist. I still have some of the artwork he produced at that time.

I have never, ever been able to touch my toes.  My back just won’t bend that way. (My mother could bend and place her palms on the floor. What’s all that about?)

I make wonderful pastry and a mean meat and potato pie. I have made huge Desperate Dan pies for various functions.








I hate cleaning but I quite enjoy ironing. I can sit and look at dust and it doesn’t worry me!

My husband ‘s cousin was a famous rock star and over the years we have had free tickets for gigs and gone backstage after the show.

As a little girl, I loved reading so much that I would read under the covers with a torch when the light was switched off.

When I was 18, I was a member of the Grewelthorpe Drama Group and I was in a play called ‘For Pete’s Sake’ in Masham Town Hall and I still have the programme somewhere.

When I die, I would like my ashes scattering over the bridge, into  the river Skell at Fishergreen  Ripon.  I grew up in Ripon and feel a glow around me when I visit the City.









I think there are 11 facts here.  Oh well.  The 12th fact about me is…. I like to be different!

Staffordshire soft oatcakes

8 Aug











115g finely ground oatmeal

115g wholewheat or plain flour (I used strong white bread flour)

half teaspoonful of salt

7g dry yeast

half teaspoonful of sugar

225ml lukewarm milk

225ml lukewarm water


Mix the warm milk and warm water together.

Put the dry yeast and sugar into a cup and add a third of a cup of this warm liquid. Leave for 5 or 10 minutes until the mixture becomes frothy.


In the meantime put the oatmeal, flour and salt in a bowl.







When the yeast mixture is frothy add this to these dry ingredients, after which add the rest of the liquid to form a runny batter.


Cover this batter with a cloth and leave in a warm place for about an hour











or until the mixture has become thick and bubbly.







Grease and heat a heavy bottomed frying pan or griddle pan and pour a ladle of the mixture in,






letting it run around and cover the pan base. (It won’t run easily as it is now of a thick consistency.)

As the oatcake starts to cook there will be airholes appearing and after 2 or 3 minutes the oatcake will be brown and ready to turn over.





Continue to cook for a further 2 or 3 minutes on the 2nd side.








These oatcakes can be eaten hot or cold and used as wraps with hot or cold fillings.



I filled one warm oatcake with thinly sliced rump steak and fried onions. It was really delicious.













This amount of mixture made me 4 oatcakes which can be used in any dish where a pancake, tortilla wrap, chapatti or similar would be used.


Lots of ‘ oaty goodness’ !











A memorable holiday.

5 Aug

                                               Outside the Paris hotel, Las Vegas      

I have had some fantastic holidays over the years, one of which was to  Las Vegas  in 2001 and it was so good.

I have since been to Vegas on two further occasions but the first time I went, my husband David and I were with a family group. This made it really special. Grown up children rarely want to tag along with parents but we were going to a wedding so we all were there. There were lots of friends in the group and it was an amazing time.

Beautiful day in Las Vegas











Helen & Richard in ‘Slots a fun’








It was a two destination holiday, Las Vegas first, then a move to Los Angeles where we visited various theme parks.

In Vegas, we toured all the fantastic hotels along ‘The Strip’. Each had its own ‘Wow’ factor and I loved it.

The heat was amazing. It was late April and early May and one day it touched 100 degrees. Strangely on the following day, the temperature dipped to 68 degrees and it was so windy and we watched in amazement as a huge tumble weed rolled across the road in the wind, halting the traffic for minutes.  We had seen it so many times in cowboy films and there it was before our eyes.  It was this same windy day that we had a helicopter trip at night over the strip.  Helicopters fair better in windy conditions by all accounts and it was quite an experience.

The day after this we had a flight in a light aircraft to the Grand Canyon over the Hoover dam. Great stuff!  The sun shone as we looked into the Grand Canyon and it snowed, just flurries but it was strange to witness it.

Our transportation to the Grand Canyon








The Grand Canyon









Some in our party were travel sick on the little plane and it was commented  ‘Trust us to get the 12yr old pilot’.  I’m sure he must have been in his late 20’s but he was slight and blond and would have needed his ID everywhere he went to prove his age.


In Vegas, we also visited Freemont street at night and were duly were amazed by the Freemont Street experience which is a pedestrian mall with its $70 million light canopy covering two blocks.

Freemont Street by dayFreemont Street by day


While down town, we had a meal at the Hotel California which was filled with Hawaiians eating spider crabs.

We played the slots and drank complimentary bottles of Bud. We ate in many different hotels, enjoyed the entertainment and people watched all holiday.









Then on to Los Angeles.

We visited Disney and Universal Studios and had a tour which took us on Rodeo Drive and to the Chinese theatre where all the ‘Stars’ have stars on the pavement and where they have left their hand prints in cement for posterity.

Knotts Berry Farm was the first theme park we visited and I remember in particular looking up into the sky where a plane had made a smiley face with its trail. There was loads to see and do here. What a good day out!

Disney was good too and although we we all adult we loved it.

Universal studios was really fantastic. The Indiana Jones ride in particular sticks in my memory but nothing in all the holiday disappointed us.

Two weeks were gone in a flash and sadly time to come home.

We vowed to return to Las Vegas and we did, twice. Don’t know if that was the last time.

I have just renewed my passport so who knows!