Baggy trousers


My “daily attire” or uniform is a wide legged pair of black trousers from Evans, like these.I wear them with a blouse that hangs over the top and hides all the lumps ad bumps.

Because of my disability, I have to shorten the legs (I have a 21 inch inside leg!).I’ve gone from a size 24, to a 22…. to a 20 now. The size 20’s are a little loose, so I imagine that in another month or so it’ll be time to buy a couple more pairs in a size 18.I had a bit of a sort out today, as I was having real trouble trying to find the second pair of size 20’s in amongst all the others.

So I have about 3 or 4 pairs of size 22 black trousers, most still have some good wear left in them.I have bagged them up, but I was joking with OH that I’d not send them to the charity shop, as someone may buy them and – if they are a size 22, but 5ft 4 or something, it could be a real fashion faux pas!

The trousers aren’t expensive, but it takes an age to take them up. I used to do it by hand (can’t stand the iron on stuff…. it always comes off), but my wonderful little sister now does them for me on her sewing machine using some sort of invisible style stitching.


Five a Day

fruit-480x279I’ve always loved my fruit and vegetables. But since joining Weight Loss Resources my intake of fruit and vegetables has slowly risen….. and risen….. and RISEN!!!

Today, my weekly shop (for two/three people) contained:

1 x pack of pak choi, 2 x red onions, 4 x brown onions, 1 x button mushrooms, 1 x chestnut mushrooms, 1 x portobello mushrooms, 1 x pack of stir-fry veg (ready prepared), 2 x cauliflower (to satisfy my new “cauliflower rice” craving), 1 x pack of greens, 1 x lettuce, 1 x pack of vine tomatoes, 2 x yellow pepper, 1 x red pepper, 5 x carrots, 1 x aubergine, 1 x GIANT butternut squash, 2 x courgettes, 2 x bags of potatoes, 1 x cucumber, 1 x pack of parsley, 2 x avocados, 1 x pack of shallots, 1 x fennel bulb, 4 x pink lady apples, 3 x bananas, 2 x lemons, 1 x lime ,1 x bag of brazil nuts, 1 x bag of walnuts…

Now you may look at this and think – there’s no way she’s gonna get through that in a week…..??? That’s what I always think whilst I am putting the shopping away – but I do, and each week I order more!

In fact we are now storing veg in a crate in the garage (with a lid to stop rats/mice/squirrels). Can anyone beat this????


Just a little hiccup!

Had a nice and very healthy dinner tonight of sea bass fillet, sauce made with low fat creme fraiche and lemon slices, boiled potatoes, pan fried samphire and fennel – in total about 450 calories. 

Then ate 100g of mango with low fat creme fraiche and bran flakes. 

Then 60g of tortilla crisps…. 

THEN 50g of sugar puffs with milk….. closely followed by 5 Jacobs cream crackers with goats cheese, half an apple and some grapes….. 

This additional “snacking” all added up to 1,000 calories!!!   Sad 
I was doing so, so well….. but at least I stopped after just a very small glass of white wine!!!

Cauliflower rice, and the start of a new love affair!

I have made a really amazing discovery!

I read a post on the forums (on Weight Loss Resources) a couple of weeks back in answer to someone asking about alternatives to rice (with curry, etc) and it suggested cauliflower rice.

I looked up how to make this, and it’s basically whizzing some raw cauliflower in a food processor until fine (and it really does resemble rice!) and cooking it (without any added water) in a microwave. I placed my cauliflower in a microwave steamer, and cooked it on full power for 2.5 minutes.

It was served with a Quorn bolognese, and was actually surprisingly tasty and a really good, low calorie, low carb alternative. 46 calories for 150 grams of cauliflower, as opposed to 50g of white rice (that I’d usually have) is 177 calories….. so that is MORE for a fifth of the calories!

It even looks like rice! It absorbed the flavours of the bolognese when mixed in, and had all the same properties that I crave from rice (soaking up the juice, filling, etc)

Cauliflower rice with Quorn bolognese, stir fried pak choi and peas


Middle age spread

For those of us accepted by Thalidomide, the term “Flid” is an accepted word.  It’s non-offensive, easier to say, and most certainly easier to spell!

All now in our fifties.  As we get older, this is probably the one single thing that is likely to cause us serious health problems, side effects and ultimately send us on our way….. is being overweight….. obese….. morbidly obese.

I am really interested in the whole weight loss for flids debate, as I am nine months into monitoring and changing what I eat…. and shock, horror, it is possible to loose weight without exercise/walking.

The only exercise I have done is swim for an hour about 6 times in the nine months….  I have managed to lose 22 pounds, in nine months just by monitoring what I eat and the calories it contains, and limiting myself to about 1,500 calories a day.

I have been educating myself about calories in foods.  It is possible to eat very well and lose weight.  I thought I did eat well, and didn’t eat that much, but by logging everything I eat and working out the calorie content, I have discovered that I was probably eating about twice the number of calories I needed to in order to loose weight.

August 2011… at my very biggest!

Sadly, certain things I have had to more or less eliminate from my diet.  Pastry, red meat, pork, alcohol, sweets, chocolate, sausages, mayonnaise, bread, butter or spread… these are all things that contain far too many calories for me to use my 1,500 allowance to enjoy routinely, so they are now ocassional treats.

The other thing I discovered VERY quickly is that there is very little flexibility in my calorie allowance to let me eat out…. I DO eat out, but it is now an occasional treat rather than the usual things to do, and when I do eat out, I am careful to choose wisely.  I also have to work harder for the remainder of the week to stick within my calorie allowance if I’m still going to loose weight.

Takeaways wasn’t something I had regularly, and in the past nine months I have had just one.  Fish and Chips and is definite “no no” as a small portion of fried fish and small portion of chips would be my whole calorie allowance for the day (plus some).

The other discovery I have made is that I can’t expect to loose all of my weight in a short space of time.  This is going to take me a few years.  BUT, on the other hand, the longer I am calorie counting, the easier it becomes.  It has become ingrained into my very thinking.  I can manage to go to a coffee shop and have a coffee without cake.  If I want cake, I have a bite of Andy’s.  I am eating MORE now, I have to shop every week, and it’s costing me more, but I am cooking a lot more from scratch.  I am thinking about food more, as I have to plan what I am eating ahead of eating it and working out how to stay within calories each day.

The result of all of this (if I manage to do it) is that I lose a pound a week.  I like it because it’s that easy.  1,500 calories in each day = one pound loss at the end of the week.  A pound doesn’t seem to be a lot, but for me that’s what is achievable, and I don’t feel as though I am missing out too much.

Actually, I’ll re-phrase that.  To start with, I really felt as though I was missing out, but as time has gone on, that feeling has been replaced with a determination to loose weight!  This has been helped with loosing inches, and finding how much easier it’s become to carry out my own self-care.  Going to the loo, getting dressed – are all becoming much easier.

Welcome to my blog…

Rowing down the Thames for my 50th Birthday

So it’s only now half way through my journey to lose weight and to get fitter that I suddenly think how useful it might be to others for me to share my journey.

So it’s only now half way through my journey to lose weight and to get fitter that I suddenly think how useful it might be to others for me to share my journey.

I’ll share a little about myself for those who don’t already know me.

I am Thalidomide impaired, a Thalidomider… a flid!

A few days old.  September 1962

Thalidomide was a tablet marketed in the late 50’s and early 60’s to combat the effects of morning sickness… given to many unsuspecting pregnant women with no clue as to one of it’s most devastating side-effects.  I hesitate to say “unknown side effects” because actually there is evidence emerging now that in fact the German drug company (Chemie Grunethal) had been alerted plenty of times about damage to the unborn foetus.

But that is another story altogether.

I was one of those “Thalidomide babies”, born in the September of 1962.  To an unsuspecting woman, my Mum.  Of course, one cannot imagine just how devastating that must have been and indeed, I may never really understand the full impact of having a baby as severely deformed as I was.  My Mum shares what she wants to about it.

As a Mum myself now, I can only imagine how her life was altered.

Welcome to my blog...
My Mum, Andree Simone Hortense Vaillant

But my Mum, Andree, did a fantastic job of bringing me up.  I have two younger sisters who were born within three years of my birth, so my Mum had her work cut out!!!










With my sister Michele, aged about 4 years.