Monday, April 18, 2011

Bet me

On Saturday, a good friend of mine came over for a visit along with her husband and daughter. Her daughter is about a year younger than my Devon and the two girls are best buddies. It's so important at that age for a child to have a playmate with whom she can freely talk about poop and underpants. My friend, whom I have known for about ten or eleven years now, is a cop (as is her husband) and her station has been having a weight loss competition since the beginning of the year. I knew she was participating because she would always try to estimate the calories of whatever we were eating when we were together, but I had no idea how devoted she had been to her program until I saw her on Saturday. She was wearing this red hoodie that fit all snug and she looked about half the size I'm used to seeing and I went, "Damn, woman, you all skinny," and she said, "Yeah, bitch - 40 pounds since January." I had to be revived with chocolate and Dr. Pepper.

Forty pounds. FORTY. That's a Harper, basically. She shed herself of enough body weight to equal a small seven-year-old. Now I've seen my friend get motivated to lose weight before, and when she puts her mind to it she does it, but I suspect part of her motivation is her husband, who is one of those beanpole ectomorphs who should be banned from existence until they learn to overeat properly like the rest of us. He is also one of those people who has no compunction about expressing his opinion that perhaps his wife doesn't need to eat that second helping of scalloped potatoes and will do things like buy her a swim club membership as a surprise. My husband is one of those people who says things like, "Baby, if you want me to get in the car and go drive through the pouring rain to get you a crumb-topped blueberry muffin that is bigger than my own head, I will, because I love you and I want to do something that will make you happy. Also, I need some sausage." I married the world's most wonderful enabler.

But I was wondering later about the competition at her job and whether that was a bigger (or equal) motivating factor for her, and it occurred to me that perhaps a little competition was exactly what David and I needed to get us in gear to lose the weight we keep saying we're going to lose. So I proposed that we have a contest, to run every three weeks. Whoever loses five pounds first within three weeks gets a prize, to be provided by the loser. David suggested, and I agreed, that if I win, he will take the children on a weekend day, giving me an extra day to myself. He might take them somewhere for the day, or I might take off for the day, but he will be in charge of the kids for 6-8 hours. This will mean a lot more to me soon as school is out in just over a month.

I am not going to tell you what David chose as his prize. I will only say that he is feeling VERY motivated and has been getting a faraway, dreamy look on his face every five minutes. I conveniently failed to mention that he can have that particular prize anytime by just asking, but he never asks, so now it's a commodity to be withheld unless he wins. Contests are fun!

In quilting news, I appealed to the hive mind a week or so ago on Facebook and asked for help with a pattern for a quick baby quilt using a selection of ft quarters and yardage I had in my stash. Ginny of Ginny's Quilts stepped up to the plate and wrote out instructions for the star quilt that's shown on her blog banner in a 45x45 size. I whipped it up over the weekend:

Then I spent the next week trying to quilt it. Leah will be having fits about all the texture I could have added to those big blocks, but I needed simple and quick and acceptable to give away. So I did "straight line" quilting, which I put in quotation marks, because there was nothing straight about any of the lines. It looks like I stuck the quilt under the needle, closed my eyes and raised up my arms, and just let her rip.  Then as I was working, I realized—far, far too late—that my backing was seriously crooked:

I meant to do that. Babies need stimulation and perfectly straight lines are far too stultifying for young minds. This kid will be a fuckin' genius, no doubt.

Devon is currently playing downstairs with her above-mentioned friend and I am listening to them over the baby monitor as I work. I just heard Miss Poopy tell Miss Underpants that she wants to go outside and play poopy on the underpants and then come back in and have some poopy underpants. I'm waiting for one of them to drop or spill something and go, "Oh, poopy underpants!"

As for me, I have had no Dr. Pepper today. NONE. Instead I had coffee, like a grown-up, middle-aged woman is supposed to, with fat-free half & half and two carefully measured teaspoons of sugar. I weighed my goddamn cereal and weighed the cheese I ate at 10 for a snack. I have been drinking sparkling water all day and peeing every six minutes. After Devon's friend goes home, I will find a way to do some sort of undignified exercise in the privacy of my home while the children comment on my lack of form and stamina. Then I will collapse on the floor and clutch my aching, empty belly while I imagine the light that will surely go out in my sweetie's eyes when he realizes I have won and he will not be receiving his anticipated prize.

Oh, hell. Maybe I'll have a cookie.

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