#Stronger than the CHRISTMAS Cookie!

container of iced sugar cookies

I do not usually write my cookie posts together, but eight days before Christmas, with New Year’s around the corner it is “crunch time” in more ways than one. This is my first Christmas in maintenance for my weight loss, and I want to make the most of it. On December 9th I shared about my frustration at my weight gain, slight though it is, since a medication change and Thanksgiving. Although I do not believe I misbehaved very badly, there were careless handfuls of caramel popcorn that were unaccounted for, as well as occasional scoops of peanuts, pecans, and other such things.

My weight loss goal, which I met on May 9th was 145 pounds. For most of the months since then, except for Thanksgiving, my weight has fluctuated up and down a few ounces in the 143 range, occasionally dipping to 142. Today my weight was 147.2 and while that is not awful, it is not great. My chief strategy since writing my last “cookie” post, has been to continue weighing and measuring my food, getting on the scale every day and dropping my calorie intake from 1500 calories a day to 1250 to 1300.

So far, so good. But my current situation has reminded me of something I had forgotten, that my weight loss was very slow. The last two months before finally getting to my goal, it slowed to a crawl, a two-pound loss in the last month. While enjoying my 1500 calorie plan and my 143 pound weigh-ins, I had forgotten how hard it had been.

Photo by Alesia Kozik from Pexels

I went shopping yesterday to stock up on some pre-Holiday items, including some grapefruit, navel oranges and apples, congratulating myself all the way to the check out. And there I saw it, the thing that made me decide to write this post. There, in shiny, glossy color, were several magazines featuring cookies, cakes, pies and more. Let me restate that. There were sugar-laden, gorgeous, tempting, inviting, sparkling, satiny, alluring cookies and cakes and pies, oh my!

They seemed to speak, almost jump off the page words of invitation. “You still have time, it’s not Christmas yet. You could go home and make me, give me away, well, maybe just a taste, you have already gained five pounds, what is a few more cookies?”

That is when I thought, maybe someone else needs to hear the words that I have to say to myself, some healthy ” “back talk.” I realize there are lots of experts in health magazines, websites and podcasts who may be more scientifically based, and you have your own program that you are following. But perhaps some encouraging words from someone who is in the trenches of weight loss maintenance in this season of sweets would be helpful. “Protect your investment. It is not just those size 10 dress slacks you don’t want to outgrow, it is those healthy cholesterol and blood sugar numbers you want to maintain. You do not have to be deprived, but make wise choices.”

For some people two cookies would not be an issue, but I am the woman who self-medicated with double stuffed sandwich cookies for a mid-morning snack during those first stressful months of the pandemic. Every. Day. I know I can have an occasional scone, or muffin, but I know what two cookies would do to me (I cannot eat just one, one cookie is an appetizer).

I realize that there are people who have the opposite problem, women and men who want to gain a healthy weight but not matter what they try, they do not seem to be able to do that. Those folks deserve a lot of respect and empathy from those of us on the other side of , er, the scale. There are certainly people who have grown up knowing what healthy eating is and how to maintain a healthy outlook, where food is concerned. People for whom food is simply fuel. I cannot imagine what that is like.

Here are a few thoughts and strategies that might be helpful.

Put on a “just for you” fashion show. Dress up in all your favorite new clothes and model them for the mirror. Be thankful.

Stick to your resolve! I do not know who to credit for the quote, “Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.” I have mixed feelings about that, but I love how I feel in my dress clothes.

Say no kindly, but firmly to anyone who offers you any food that is going to throw you off track. “You do you!” I do not know who to credit for that either, but I like it.

Choose! Plan to not be deprived, but chose that special food or treat that you want to enjoy and plan to savor it. Plan too for the healthy options that will accompany it.

Look in the mirror again and smile.

You’ve got this! And you can be #stronger than the CHRISTMAS cookie! We both can.

Hoping this helps. Not holding back the tide,


Copyright 2020-2024 Michele Somerville, The Beach Girl Chronicles and https://msomervillesite.WordPress.com

Postscript: This weekend is the second anniversary of my blog (a blogaversary?) which is mostly memoir. I plan to keep writing, although life lately has made regular posts challenging. I am grateful for every follower, friend and family member who take the time to read and comment on my writing. I am grateful for the people I have come to know around the world. Some of my friends are taking a break from writing and I miss them, but that is how this thing works. I am grateful for the opportunity to write and publish these stories, especially stories about my parents, Jack and Maggie and my beloved hometown, Onset, Massachusetts.

Linking up with Denyse Whelan Blogs at Life This week

Published by msomerville2014

About: Michele Somerville is a wife, mother, stepmother, grandmother, sister, aunt, cousin and friend. She lives with her husband and their dog Sheba. Sheba is their fourth rescue dog in 30 years. She is a retired ordained United Methodist Elder and serves two churches part-time in North Central Pennsylvania. She obtained her Bachelors’ Degree in 1999 from Mansfield University and her Master of Divinity in 2004 and Doctor of Ministry in 2016, both from Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, New York. My Doctor of Ministry Thesis was:” Prophetic Words of Grace: Biblical Storytelling in the Local Church.” Michele began writing and performing character monologues for worship in 2008. She began by asking the question about nameless characters in the Bible, “What would they say if they could speak for themselves?” and then using her theological education and experience of the human condition to attempt an answer that is both academic and creative. Much of what you will read here are memories from growing up in a tourist town, in a bar, in the 1960’s, shaggy dog stories about our rescue dogs, life in a small town, and stories of faith and hope. Throughout her life she has lived in many states, including small towns, large towns and cities. She lived in Rota, Spain, for nine challenging months. Despite all the places she have lived since moving away from home in 1970,Michele is at the heart of all things Jack and Maggie’s daughter, and a beach girl from Onset, Massachusetts.

10 thoughts on “#Stronger than the CHRISTMAS Cookie!

    1. Thank you Sue, I have learned a lot from you, Deb, Leanne and others that have helped me through the experience. Sticking to my resolve: Blessings for Christmas, and yes, a happier, and healthier 2022


  1. Hi ! I am thankful I do not have problem with my weight. However I exercise a lot. This could be a very important way to maintain a healthy weight. i like walking and do fitness classes from YouTube plus I am very lucky that we purchased a few years ago a spin bike and a treadmill. Well, once a PE teacher and fitness instructor, always a desire to be active. So for me if I eat a few cookies one day it is not a big deal. I wish you will have the willpower to eat only what you need. One think for sure that can help is to drink lots of water or herb tea in order to control your appetite. We eat lots of fresh vegetable late in the afternoon. Anyway I wish you a Happy holidays. Even with the pandemic we got to stay optimistic that life will not be this way forever. Stay well. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. HI France 55, thanks very much for taking the time to read and comment. and I appreciate your suggestions for healthy living and ways you have modeled that in your work life and life. Happy Holidays back, making the best of things is important. Thank you again, Michele

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am glad you are beating that inner voice of temptation, especially this season Michele. Oh yes, the comfort eater in me well remembers this kind of thing. Very much. However, and it’s a big shift for me is for a couple of reasons I can no longer eat in quantity what I used to do. Room in my mouth and ability to chew is one reason, and as I am ageing (72) my stomach and gut are not friendly to anything over eaten. I am still overweight but for me, post cancer my doctors have no problem with it. I recently decided that 3 kg of Covid Comfort eating…and less moving was something i needed to ‘lose’ and did so very very steadily using cutting back and increased moving. Now comfy in what I wear…
    What a great way to end the Monday Link Up Life This Week with your post! Thanks so much for joining in and I look forward to starting 2022 Life This Week on Monday 3 January 2022. Warm wishes and stay well! Denyse.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Denyse, I will try to be a bit more present. I am just a few months behind you, I will be 72 in late April. I am sorry that you are having stomach and gut issues, I am glad your cancer doctors have priorities. With what you have been through, and being comfortable in what you wear is important! Blessings for the holidays, Merry Christmas and Health New Year. Michele


  3. Hi Michele,

    I too have an ongoing weight problem that is only worse for my ignoring it for so long.
    Some new meds about this time last year had an unusual side effect of depressing my appetite,
    This resulted in about a 35 lbs. weight loss, which was amazing but despite hoping I could coast on for another 25 pounds, It stepped at a much better place than I was at but still . . .
    Then late August, covid and I spent some time together and in a short 30ish days, I lost another 10 pounds.
    I now have that wonderful problem of my pants not fitting right and my belts being too loose despite punching multiple new holes for the buckle.

    So I’ve paused again but at the down 35 pound mark. I’m happy but wish I cold still carve off another 20 and keep it off. We’ll see. I can’t eat like I used to but me and cookies still get along too well.

    Hey, I wanted to let you know that one of your essays about growing up in a roadhouse inspired me to build a story around one. We have a very old roadhouse near our home which goes back to 1859 so has seen stage coaches, early model A’s, prohibition and many other significant points of history.

    Thinking about this reminded me that I’d wanted to try my hand at historical fiction so I put the two together and now have a historical fiction set at the Washoe which is now just a bar and restaurant with a great ballroom n the second story. Not knowing how it would be received I shared it with a local group of long time residents and it quickly became my 3rd most popular story for the year.

    I had thought of reaching out to you for some roadhouse flavor but the articles about it kept me more than busy and at the time I didn’t know if I had a flop or a hit on my hands, so I chose not to disturb you.

    Now, you might enjoy 30 minutes with some flawed characters dealing with life all centered around a smaller roadhouse than the one you grew up in.

    The Last Helping of Roadhouse Stew

    Regardless, I hope you have a great Christmas and this year, show those cookies who’s in charge.
    Many Blessings.


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