The Sassy Pear

Finding my way through my forties

When The Label No Longer Fits — February 12, 2018

When The Label No Longer Fits

I have several labels I have applied to myself over the years, but the one that has been with me the longest is Sugar Lover. I didnt just have a sweet tooth, I had a whole mouth full of them. I wouldn’t just eat a cookie, I would eat as many cookies as my stomach could hold, and then I’d eat a few more. Sometimes, I would eat dinner just so I could eat dessert.

Yes, I was a sugarholic. Dessert was my love language.


But over the last year or so, I find myself not enjoying the sweet stuff as much. I mean sure, as soon as I finish a meal my thoughts immediately turn to “what sweets do I have that would nicely complement my dinner?” because old habits die hard, but more often than not, confections don’t satisfy me like they used to.

Before I go further, let me assure you that I do still very much enjoy a decadent treat – last summer at the state fair, there was an artisinal chocolate bakery and I had the most amazing chocolate lava cake – seriously I don’t think I’ve ever eaten anything so delicious in my life. And a couple of weeks ago, I found a recipe for the most perfect chocolate chip cookie – crispy edges with a chewy middle…we made 2 batches in one week – that’s how good they were. So I am still totally on board for gourmet or homemade decadence.

But as far as just any old store bought cookie? Nah. Not interested anymore. If I do have one, it’s just because I don’t know how to let go of being that person, not because I necessarily want the cookie.

It’s hard to let go of that label. It’s scary to become someone you’ve never been before.

And actually now that I think about it, some of my other labels are changing as well. I used to be a night owl but now I really like getting up early. I used to enjoy alcohol quite frequently…now I can take it or leave it (most often I just leave it because it’s not worth feeling so awful the next day). I used to be someone who always thought she was “less than” everyone else, now I know better (I don’t think I’m better than anyone else, I just no longer assume I’m inferior to everyone I meet).

So many changes! It’s like puberty all over again, but with fewer pimples and less angst!

Jr High Jill had a lot of angst. And bracelets. 

I think my next step is to just accept that this is who am I now, and that it’s perfectly okay to be different than I once was. But man, it feels kinda weird…like driving some else’s car or sporting a new hairdo, but you get used to it I suppose. And just like Teen Jill learned to live beyond the big earrings and rubber bracelets, Grown Up Evolved Jill will live beyond the Oreos and Hostess snack cakes.

UPDATE: Oh my gosh look what I found!!

         And in color too!!



I’ll go Jackie Chan on that cake, I mean it! — April 2, 2013

I’ll go Jackie Chan on that cake, I mean it!

Hey Friends!! How was your Easter?

First things first – my sweet friend and fellow blogger Kyra is in the first round of an art contest and she needs your votes. So please go here and ignore all the slutty fairies (okay, they aren’t all slutty, only some) and find her White Rabbit painting, then scroll past the artwork down to where all the names are. Find Kyra Wilson and check the box next to her name and then click on the “vote” button below that. This means a lot to her and besides being super talented, she’s a great person who deserves to win. It takes only a minute to vote, and I know she will really appreciate it. 🙂

Man, I gotta tell ya, I had a fabulous weekend. I took off work Friday to go visit my old BFF who was going to be in our hometown for the weekend. I haven’t been back to my hometown since my high school reunion 4 years ago, but that was a quick trip and I didn’t get a chance to really look around the town like I wanted, so this time I made sure to have plenty of time to check out my old stomping grounds. My parents moved from my hometown when I was 22, so I really don’t have a reason to go back and visit even though it’s only a couple of hours away. Most of my friends have moved away also, so unless there’s a special reason, I just don’t go home anymore. Anyway, I met up with D (whom I’ve known since I was 12, but we weren’t BFFs until college where we lived together) and we drove every inch of that town. Let me tell you, Memory Lane is a long, long road. I drove past my old house (the house that when I dream I’m home – it’s always this house) and there were cars in the driveway and the garage door was open – I was thisclose to stopping and asking if I could look inside. I didn’t want them to call the cops on the crazy crying lady though, so I drove on past.  We snuck in to our old high school (and by snuck, I mean we walked right in – it was 4pm and the doors were still open but there were only a handful of people there. No one seemed to notice the two middle aged women roaming the halls) and looked around, we went to the lake and tried to find our names that were spray painted on the spillway nearly 25 years ago (they weren’t there anymore, most likely washed away by the elements or covered over by the other 24 graduating classes since ours), we drove by the houses where our friends used to live…it was a very bittersweet day. I didn’t realize how much I missed that town until I was there this time. I have to admit, I had a really good childhood growing up in that town. I was dismayed to see that it was a little smaller and a little less shiny than I remembered, but it’s still there and that’s what counts. There’s been talk of a 25 year high school reunion and if that happens I will definitely go. I already want to go back right away!

Saturday was a day of running errands, and then Sunday was Easter. Good church service, excellent lunch (made by yours truly), and a big nap. Does it get any better than that? No, no it does not. 🙂

I gotta say though, I really overdid it on Sunday. After a heavy lunch, my mom brought over a cheese cake and my neighbors sent over some really cute cupcakes they had made – and I gorged myself on all of it. Oh, I was disgusted with myself. I was digging into another slice of cheesecake later that afternoon while watching The Bible on History Channel (well done, History Channel!) and my son said “wow mom, you must really like that stuff” and suddenly I realized that Jesus probably wouldn’t be so impressed with my gluttony. Actually I wasn’t impressed with my gluttony either, so I got up and tossed the rest of the cheesecake in the trash and was done. I drank hot tea and water for the rest of the evening – I didn’t even eat dinner because I was so full from everything I had eaten earlier in the day.

Yesterday I decided that I needed a break from the sweet stuff, so I planned on having no sugary treats all day. I was resolved that I would not let processed sugar pass my lips all day. I didn’t even put sugar in my coffee or tea (and I was strangely satisfied with that)…but then about 2:00 in the afternoon, my pusher the little old man across the street brought me a slice of Easter Bunny cake – you know the cakes you see in the bakery that are shaped like a bunny? He brought me the bunny’s butt – the part with all the extra icing. It was pink and fluffy and I didn’t want it. I really didn’t. But old habits die hard, and I took a bite. It wasn’t that good, but I took another bite and another until I had finished off the whole slice. And then I spent the rest of the afternoon feeling disappointed in myself, realizing that I’m going to have to take a stand and JUST SAY NO. I can’t keep defeating my own agenda – I can’t keep letting my emotions override my logic.

So today I’m going to try again.  I’m going to say no to the sweet stuff today – just today, that’s all I have to worry about. If cake or chocolate or a treat comes my way, I’m going to use my sweet ninja skills to block the attack and it will end up in the trash. With dish soap poured over it. And coffee grounds dumped over that. And if I can get my hands on some bacon grease, I’ll add that too. Because I’m tired of the defeat and I deserve a little victory in my life, that’s why.

So that’s the plan anyway. I gotta go brush up on my roundhouse kicks and throat punches so I’ll be ready when the sweets jump out at me from behind the corner. Anyone have any ninja stars they can loan me for awhile? 🙂

Then and now — April 1, 2010

Then and now

via Google Images

Nearly a year ago , I wrote these words:

I really think that if I could learn to live without sugar, I’d be golden. But the thought of giving up sugar sends me into a near panic. I’m serious – whenever I read literature about giving up sugar entirely I can feel the anxiety rising in my chest and my pulse quickens. Cutting out sugar and sweets and junk food is almost a foreign concept to me – I can’t quite wrap my brain around it, and I’m not sure I really want to. This sounds weird to say, but I feel like sugar is part of my identity. Being a sugar-holic is a big part of who I am. Other people may not see it, but I know it. Sweets bring me more joy than I would care to admit. Isn’t that sad?

Yes, it is sad. But I think know that I am moving forward because I am ready to cut back on the sugar. I AM READY. I’ve downloaded this ebook and I’ve been keeping a log of sugar triggers.  I wrote about it over on iChange and this is what I wrote:

I’ve been keeping a log of things that trigger my sweet tooth and things that don’t. It’s interesting because I’ve discovered that regardless of how much sugar is in something, it’s the TASTE of sweetness that seems to affect me. For example, milk chocolate sends me straight into sugar orbit, but I’m totally fine with one piece of dark chocolate.  Peanut M&M’s make me want to dive into the bag and live there forever, but graham crackers are pretty safe for me.  The sweeter something tastes, the more I want it. This is one reason I don’t think artificial sweeteners work for me – the high level of sweet taste for me is the trigger.  I’m still working on my list, but I thought it was interesting that I’ve learned this already after just a few days of tracking.

This is really helping me also with learning to live in a balance. I’m such an all-or-nothing person – either I will eat all the sugar in the world, or I will let myself have none of it EVER!!  I’m such an extremist!! I think this is going to be a good exercise in moderation and learning to trust my body with what it can handle and what it can’t.

I’ve been laying the ground work for going sugarless (not sure if I need to be sugar-free yet) for awhile by doing the 10 Day Challenge last month and keeping this trigger log. I feel completely calm and really okay with letting go of the sugar, not like I felt last year at this time.  I think that’s a big step forward. Trying to take things slowly, and not jumping in with both feet I hope will make this change stick.  I’m ready to move forward.

A new challenge — March 8, 2010

A new challenge

Hey gang!  Did you all have a good weekend?  Yesterday was gorgeous day here – we loaded up and headed to our local farm supply and bought seeds for this year’s garden. We are expanding the garden area-wise, and planting more and different veggies this year. I think we bought nearly $40 worth of seeds, and that was 40% off!  We are some garden-planning maniacs! 

I’m frustrated. I’m not losing weight like I thought I would. I’ve lost 4 pounds, and gained 2, and lost 1, and gained 3, and lost 1. *sigh* I’ve been doing this back and forth dance for 2 months and I’m tired of it.  I really thought my sugar-free experiment would yield some results, but alas, I sit here the same weight I was when I started it. Of course I planned that little foray right smack dab in the middle of my Lady Time and all her accompanying symptoms, not to say that the experiment was a failure – my PMS symptoms were noticeably lessened and I felt good while I was doing it, so I’m going to modify my No Sweets policy a little bit, but I’m going to stick with it for awhile longer.  (Was that like, the longest sentence EVER?) 

In hopes of getting below 155 pounds, I’m going to begin a new challenge. For the next 10 days I’m going to exercise for at least 20 minutes per day. Somehow I am going to force myself to fit it in – I think this will be the key to busting out of the upper 150’s.  So, that’s the goal for the next 10 days – Get. It. Done. I might buy a couple of new DVD’s, because there are days when I just don’t want to get on the elliptical, and plus I think it’s good to change things up. I need something to look forward to.

About expanding the No Sweets Policy, this week is going to be a little hard to work around. My birthday is Wednesday so I might treat myself to a little dark chocolate, or an angel food cake or something like that, and then Saturday is when I will celebrate with my parents and my sister and her family. Does anyone else do this? Have a birthday gathering to celebrate, even if you are almost 40? Birthdays are kind of a big deal in my family, we all try to get together and have a lunch or dinner and open presents and have cake and ice cream.  Doesn’t matter the age, if you were born into my family, you will be having a birthday party! It’s still fun.

So anyway, there will be a few sugary foods consumed in the next 6 days. OH! And guess what else I’m doing on Wednesday?  I’m taking the day off of work and treating myself to a massage and a mani/pedi. After my morning at the spa, I’m going to go shopping. I plan on spending the day by myself just doing the things I want to do.  I rarely get time to do these things, so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity. I’m really excited! 

Okay so, my focus this week is exercise and celebrating me! I’ll let you all know how it goes.  What would you do with a day all to yourself?

Fare Thee Well, My Sweet — February 24, 2010

Fare Thee Well, My Sweet

It. Is. ON!!!!!

For the next 10 days, I am declaring myself a sweets-free zone.  No cookies, cakes, ice cream, or dessert of any kind for the next 10 days. From now through March 5 I will not consume any sugary-junky confections.  I can totally do this. I’m not worried about it because I totally did it yesterday. Yes, you heard me right:  I did not eat any Girl Scout Cookies. AT. ALL.  Woo!

Now for my disclaimers (you knew there would be a few):  I have a teaspoon of sugar in my coffee every morning – I’m keeping that because coffee without a little bit of sweet in it is just wrong. Wrong, I say!! So the coffee-sugar stays. Also, I’m not banning all forms of sugar in all forms of food, because, y’all, there’s sugar in EVERYTHING. I would make myself insane trying to avoid sugar at all costs, and I have so little sanity left as it is – let’s not waste what’s there, mkay? Um…that’s all the disclaimers I can think of right now…I may add more later if I think of any.

The point of this little experiment of mine is threefold:

  • to prove to myself that I will not die if I don’t have dessert,
  • to prove to myself that I am stronger than my cravings
  • to get my weight loss going again

I’m serious everyone.  I am so doing this.  And I know that in 2.5 minutes someone is going to come into my office and offer me something sweet because that’s how things like this always go, but I will be strong and with conviction I will say, “No thank you and good day sir!” and if they persist in offering me the sinful delight, I will say, “I said Good Day!”  That’ll show ’em!!

Okay, so any words of wisdom for me here? Anything you think I should know before I embark on my journey?  Pray tell, please share!!

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You’re still my hero, Vicks! — May 8, 2008

You’re still my hero, Vicks!

Yesterday was Wednesday, also know as, The Day Jill Called In Sick to Work So She Could Sleep. Tuesday night, my middle daughter, who shall be referred to as S, coughed ALL. NIGHT. LONG. It went something like this:


S: cough cough cough


S: (Ten minutes later) cough cough cough cough cough


Me: “crap.”


S: (three minutes later) cough cough


Me: “stop coughing”


S: (one minute later) cough cough cough cough cough


Me: “Please God make her stop coughing!”


S: cough cough cough cough cough cough HACK HACK HACK!!!


Me: “God, I gave her cough medicine an hour ago. What do I do now??”


Me: (goes to S’s room) “S, here’s a cough drop.”


S: “I don’t like cough drops.”


Me: “yes you do. Just take it”


S: (shakes head no) “I don’t like them”


Me: (through gritted teeth) “Just. Take. It.” (goes back to bed)


S: (ten minutes later) HACK HACK HACK. BLARGH!!!!!!


Me: “You’ve got to be kidding me…”


S: “Mom, I threw up, it’s all over my sheets.”


Me: (sigh) “Okay, get in bed with your sister; I’ll change your bedding.”


(After 20 minutes of changing sheets (on the top bunk – not easy at 3 in the morning))


Me: “what to do, what to do… Aha!”


Me: “Let’s put some of this on your chest and throat and see if that doesn’t help”.


S: (very sleepy voice) “Okay.”


Ten mintues later: Silence


Twenty minutes later: Silence


Thirty minutes later: Still more silence (Silence is golden!)


Me: “Thank you God for Vap-o-rub!!”

I got about two hours of sleep that night, so when the alarm went off at 5am, I said, uh-uh, and went back to sleep. I called in sick. I never call in sick, but I knew I’d be worthless at work, so I stayed home and napped all day – it was great.

S is feeling much better today and since I slathered her in vaporub at bedtime last night, she coughed a few times, but nothing like the night before. We all slept much better last night.

Between all my napping, I ate a little more than usual, but nothing out of control. I am finding it difficult to cut back on sugar since EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD has sugar in it. I had no idea how much sugar is in the foods I have at home. This may be harder than I thought…

Well, anyway, today I am focusing on drinking tons of water since I had very little yesterday and am feeling a little dehydrated. That plus my Nyquil hangover today (I took some Nyquil Sinus last night, I think I may catching whatever S has) has left me feeling a tad bit groggy today, but I hope that focusing on work will take my mind off of how much I want to be back on my couch sleeping through a Shirley Temple movie as I was doing this time yesterday.

Hope you all are having a rested, happy day!!

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