Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On the Wagon--An Update

Remember the personal pledge not to eat junk foods or sweets for 6 months? Well, I'm about at the half-way point (or will be as of June 27), so I thought it was about time for a little report on my progress and findings.

What I have found is that I seem to have better control over my eating, which makes sense because I've heard that sugar can actually stimulate appetite. Of course, I haven't given up all sugar, just sweets and junk, but still I'm sure that it cuts my sugar intake significantly (I definitely have a sweet tooth!) At first, I think I was eating a little more, but it was easy to stop and I pay attention to portion control.

Another thing I found is a sense of freedom. That probably sounds weird, but it's true. It feels good not to think about what I can eat or can't eat. That decision has already been made and I don't think about or consider it at all anymore. Everything else--anything that doesn't fall into the categories of sweets or junk--is available. At first it was like, well, okay, what constitutes "junk food"? For me, it's chips, soda, candy, and that kind of thing. Mega empty calories.

I think I have a better disposition. I think. I probably should ask the kids, but just in case they disagree we'll just go with that.

It probably goes without saying that I'm eating a lot better--I have a tendency to grab something to eat on the run, but now it's almost always fruit--an apple, grapes, whatever. Or a piece of cheese. Or a handful of nuts. It's so much better than a couple of cookies, or one of the donuts I bought for my class, etc.

And here's the kicker--7 lbs. down with no increase in activity. Oh yeah.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Just Thinking about Names...

I'm up waiting to take a young man who has been staying with us to the airport for a 4 a.m. flight to the States (so we'll have to leave here around 1:45 a.m.), so I'm just killing time Facebooking and surfing the internet and I thought "Hey. I could actually do something constructive like blog," so here I am. It's been a while.

I was thinking awhile ago how weird names are here. It seems like people find a sound they like and go with it. I know a brother and sister whose names are Scarley and Scarla. Then there's Wallynda and Wandalyn and Wallyson. There are Eileen and Heileen--

Aaaaahh! Earthquake! We just got a shake!! Okay--just a little one.

ANYWAY, there's Marlene and Maylene and there are the twins, Marcy and Marsha--maybe not so unusual for twins.
Another thing I don't get about names is Bo-boy. It seems like everyone has a son that they call Bo-boy--the Filipinos and the Islanders. The boy has a real name, but he's called Bo-boy. I don't get it. Juniors they call Jun (June), but he may also be called Bo-boy. It's confusing to me, but it's not unusual for someone to have 2 names that they're well known by. For instance, in my class I have a young man who goes by "Sev," but he also goes by "Ton." Sometimes I call him Sev and sometimes Ton--trying to go by what seems to be most popular among the other students at the time. The Secretary of Health's name is Joseph Kevin Villagomez--sometimes the newspaper uses "Kevin" and sometimes "Joseph" or "Joe," and it's the same with people around island--about 50/50 "Joe" or "Kevin." Of course, there are probably 2 or 3 "Joe Villagomez"-es that all have government positions.
When somebody dies and their half-page color obituary goes in the paper it gives their name and then the name everyone knew them by which doesn't seem the slightest bit related to their real name--like the name may be "Margarita Sablan Camacho" and underneath it will say "Tun Chong" which is what she was known by.
There are some really beautiful names like "Sioloa" (the "Si" makes the "sh" sound). Then there are the misunderstandings that stick, like the brothers, Jim and James, who didn't realize that they were just two different forms of the same name when the US came on the scene and they chose American names. Or one Korean student who chose the American name "Jenny" but her mother made her change it to "Jeiiny" (pron. Janey), because she was told (probably by other Koreans I'm sure) that it would be luckier (maybe) and easier (huh?).

Well, I've got to go to the airport. It's 1:45 a.m.--I'm interested to see how this is going to read tomorrow when I can think straight.