Posts Tagged ‘surprise’

reverb13-blog-button Throughout the month of December, I’ll be participating in #reverb13: Reverb is a way to reflect on the past year and project into the next year with a prompt a day for 31 days.  December is the perfect time to reflect on 2013 and start to create intentions for 2014.

Day 9: Surprise
What surprised you the most this year?

One of the things that surprised me the most this year shouldn’t have been much of a shock at all.  When I researched WLS, I knew that one of the main benefits was rapid, sustained weight loss.  I’d read blogs and watched YouTube videos about people who’d lost massive amounts of weight in a short period of time.  I knew exactly what to expect from this journey I was about to begin.

But when I started stepping onto my own bathroom scale to see my own weight declining rapidly, I was happily surprised.  As my weight went down, down, down each week, I was so excited that my hard work was paying off.  Each new pound I dropped spurred me on towards greater success.  I happily followed the program that Kaiser outlined for my eating, cheerfully logged my meals in MyFitnessPal (which delighted me by bringing me lots of new friends), gladly drank my water, and gleefully completed my workouts (which came with their own set of joyful surprises). Now that I look back on these past 28 weeks post op, I am shocked and amazed that I’ve lost over 110 pounds, and counting.

To think that I started at 315 and now I’m nearing the major milestone of Onederland is simply incredible to me!



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For the month of December, I’ll be participating in #WEverb11. Each day gives a new prompt, each of which is a chance to reflect and look forward.

December 15: Surprise

What event of 2011 affected you in an unexpected way? Contributed by Kimberly Michelle.


Turning 40 is a milestone that many people dread, but I actually looked forward to it this year.  And I don’t find it surprising to feel that way, but I guess I’m saying that it might be unexpected for other people to read that statement.

It helps that I don’t look like I’m 40.  Not to sound conceited, but it’s just true.  I don’t have any wrinkles (one good thing about chubby cheeks), and my overall attitude and demeanor isn’t like the stereotypical 40-year-old.  I feel and act much younger than that, so I’d say that I’m young at heart.  My parents are both the same way – you’d never in a million years guess that my dad is 71 or that my mom is 64.  Ever.  So the genes are good, and coupling that with a great outlook, I can’t go wrong.

Beyond how I look or feel, I looked forward to this new decade because it meant I was leaving behind the unfulfilled goals of my 30s.  That statement may seem negative, and I don’t mean it to be.  I accomplished quite a few things while in my 30s, especially professionally. But on a personal level, there was much that I had hoped to complete that I left undone.  And my 40s is the time that I am going to succeed in all I set out to do in terms of weight loss and personal intentions.

So as my 6-month mark of being 40 approaches in the early part of 2012, I know that I’m going into this decade armed with the No Excuses attitude that will see me through to make sure that my aspirations are my achievements.


If you’d like to join in on the daily writing prompts, go to WEverb11, sign up for the email notifications, and join us! Or follow along on Twitter using the #WEverb11 hashtag!

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This morning when I checked my email around 10am, I couldn’t believe the number of people who had subscribed to my blog.  The notifications kept coming in, which is really unusual.  Those of you who are my regular readers know that I don’t really write this blog with the hopes of getting thousands of page views (I’ve gotten over 2500 today!!! Crazy!!!); I write it for me, and for the small, close group of like-minded bloggers whom I consider friends.  Of course, I’m always happy to get new readers and to meet new people.  But I was flabbergasted by the number of new comments and subscriptions.  What was going on?

As it turns out, farther down my inbox, there was a message from WordPress letting me know that my post about being smoke free for one year got Freshly Pressed.  What is that?  I have to admit that I didn’t know, either.  It turns out that WordPress selects certain blogs each week to be highlighted and put on the main page of WordPress.com.  The requirements are:

Getting promoted to Freshly Pressed is a major traffic win because WordPress.com receives a high volume of page views. And, we have a feedset up so people can subscribe to Freshly Pressed. Why do we do all this? It’s our way of saying we like you. We really like you.

So, by now you might be wondering how to get featured. It’s all about the content. Let’s look at five guidelines that will increase your chances of landing on the homepage:

1. Write unique content that’s free of bad stuff.

Each post that makes it to Freshly Pressed contains original content created by the WordPress user. Bad stuff includes (but isn’t limited to) plagiarism, hate speech, fear-mongering, adult/mature content, copyrighted images that belong to someone else, spam or content that is primarily advertorial in nature.

2. Include images or other visuals.

Although not every topic can be illustrated, we believe most blog posts can and should have a visual element. We like original images (meaning, your own) but if not, be sure you properly credit the original source. Video rocks, too. You may get a request from us to add an image before you are promoted to Freshly Pressed — the faster you can respond, the more likely we’ll put your post on the homepage.

3. Add tags.

We find new posts by surfing the tag pages. If you don’t use tags, we can’t find you and how sad would that be? Also, don’t use tags that are too obscure (“beauty tips from the ancient world”) but rather more common tags (“beauty,” “history”).

4. Cap off your post with a compelling headline.

Your headline needs to stand out. Avoid swear words, excessive punctuation or vague statements. We love a clever headline, and that’s often the reason we click on your article in the first place.

Good headline: I Won the Lottery And You Didn’t!
Bad headline: U Loserz, i WON!!!!!11!

5. Aim for typo-free content.

We know, we’re human, too — errors happen. We recommend using our Proofreading feature before you hit “publish.” If you’ve got a few typos but we really like your post, we may ask you to fix them. In most cases, we’ll put your post on Freshly Pressed after you’ve made the changes.

So, that’s it! Once you’ve been promoted, you’ll receive an email from us, and you’ll also notice your page views and comments increasing. Enjoy the ride! You deserve it!

I am so thrilled, I can’t even tell you!  After blogging for years, this is the first time anything this cool has happened.

The best part was the number of people who took the time to write comments and congratulate me.  So many of them said that I was an inspiration, or that my tips helped them, or that they liked my positive attitude.  Talk about making a girl feel good!  How nice is that?!

I must be living right because this makes two days in a row where I have been getting recognition, and it feels great.  Sure, the spotlight is nice, but just the fact that someone at WordPress read my blog post and thought it was good enough to be included in the Freshly Pressed blogs is such a compliment.

Thanks for letting me gush a bit, guys.  I’ll be back to my normal blogging tomorrow, I promise.  🙂

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A huge thank you to Scale Warfare for sending me an amazingly generous and thoughtful gift.  I woke up this morning to find this huge box of goodies on my doorstep.  It definitely brightened my mood after this morning’s scary weigh in.  🙂

Scale Warfare managed to send me a gift that motivates, supports, and appeals to my aesthetic sense, all at the same time.  She knows me so well, and I don’t think she could’ve given me a better, more meaningful gift.  Each time I use these items I’m going to remember what a great friend I have.  Thank you, SW!

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Many of you know that ScaleWarfare and I are BFFs in blogland.  We’ve never met in person, but we’ve been friends for a couple of years via our blogs.  About a year ago (more now) SW and I started emailing each other our daily food logs to keep each other accountable, for encouragement, and for support.  Just knowing that someone out there understood my struggles made them easier.  She and I are similar in so many ways.  In fact sometimes we sort of freak each other out with how spookily similar we are.  😉 She and I have been through so much on our weight loss journey, and it’s happily carried over into our personal lives too.

We started giving each other gifts to celebrate all of life’s joys – birthdays, weddings (hers), and just because.  We do it because we want to let the other one know we’re thinking of her, or that we want her to smile through a rough day, or because she deserves it.  You know, all the reasons that friends are there for each other.

I consider SW one of my very best friends, but today that notion was forever solidified when I recieved this:

What an overwhelming surprise!  She took one of the many photos that I have of Lulu and turned it into this amazing keepsake.  It’s printed on a canvas so it’s more like a painting, and she had it personalized with Lulu’s name.  It also has a little poem on it that is beyond sweet:

Dogs come into our lives, leave paw prints on our hearts, and we are forever changed.”

It’s perfect!  Not only does it capture everything that I feel, but it has one of my very favorite photos of Lulu. I’d said I’d wanted to have a photo collage to hang up, but this is even better! Now every time I look at it I’ll remember Lulu as a little puppy, but I’ll also be reminded of what a great friend SW is to me.  And I’ll feel loved for both reasons.

ScaleWarfare, I can’t begin to tell you how much this means to me.  You are the BEST friend anyone could ever ask for.  You are thoughtful, kind, supportive, empathetic and truly special.  I am honored to call you my friend. It’s amazing to me that two people who have never met face to face can become so significant in each others’ lives.  Thank you!

And now you know this means that we need to meet up somewhere halfway in between our two homes even more!  I can’t wait to give you a huge hug and thank you for everything.  You are the embodiment of friendship!!

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