We are not major coupon clippers – just a few here and there. But when it came time to do our shopping for Thanksgiving dinner we assembled a stack of coupons and headed off to Fred Meyer in hopes of scoring a free turkey. We were pretty sure we could meet the $150 threshold required to get a frozen bird for “free.” Our strategy included a little stocking up and holding a few higher priced items ’til the end to toss in at the last moment if needed. No need. We were in great shape – coming in at about $160. So with the turkey bonus well in hand I did it. Something that I had never done before anywhere. I asked for the senior discount!
At this store seniors get an extra 10% off certain items every Tuesday in November and December. Altogether we discounted our purchases by over $60 when combined with a rewards card, store coupons, manufacturers coupons, the turkey coupon, and the senior discount. When I tallied up the individual discounts I discovered that the senior discount saved us $4.99. Hey – it’s five bucks! Nothing to sneeze at, right?
Well, maybe. But now I’ve gone public about the fact that I am 55. I voluntarily steeped into a demographic that I don’t feel at all ready for. What’s next? Senior housing? Safe driving classes? Eating off the senior’s menu? Am I going to arrange my shopping around senior discount day? Maybe I could take my parents with me! They’ve been collecting the senior discount for years.
And maybe that’s the real issue for me. Maybe that’s why I feel like I sold my soul for $4.99. I’ve become my parents. As hard as I might push back against the clock, time continues to move along. Days become decades. Children get married. Grandchildren are born. Refusing to take the senior discount won’t change that. So I will embrace my new economic windfall and ask for the senior coffee the next time I’m at McDonalds! I’ll save a seat for you.
I’ve waited a while to write this post and am even a little tentative about writing it today.
I’ve lost 20 lbs.
I’ve been overweight for a while but I just kept eating. And eating. And eating. I’ve heard that people tend to gain about 10lbs per decade. That’s just one pound per year. I like to tell people that one pound amounts to four quarter-pound meals at McDonalds in year. Just four more than usual! Or just a few second or third baskets of chips at Azteca. One pound pound per year! You wouldn’t even notice your clothes fitting tighter until year 7 or 8!
So in the past two months I have rolled back the clock two decades worth! It feels great. My blood pressure is lower, my wife says I don’t snore as much, and I’m fitting into clothing sizes that were a distant memory.
But I’m still a bit leery of celebrating too much because I think I’m only half way. According to my medical provider I’m at a BMI of 27.53 (down from 30.41) when I should be 24. So I still have some work to do. I’ve lost 10% of my weight and I have another 10% to go to be where I should. That would put me close to my weight in college and when I got married. It’s hard to imagine being that weight again but I’m going to give it a try during the most difficult dietary season in America: The Holidays!
These days “The Holiday’s” run from Halloween to Super Bowl. That’s more than 3 months of super-sized meals, desserts, candy dishes, and snacks. But with two months of practice I think I’m ready to face this challenge. I’ve been using the Smarter for Life diet plan where you eat six 100-calorie cookies throughout the day (about 1 every 2 hours) and then eat a lighter supper with some protein. I know that if I’d followed the diet to the letter I would have lost more but I’m pleased with my progress. I’ve also been walking about 7 times per week along a 2.5 mile route in our neighborhood with some steep hills. I’m pretty sure that in order to continue making progress the number and distance of the walks will need to increase.
So I won’t post every week about this journey – perhaps monthly over the next three months just to record my progress. I’d appreciate hearing your suggestions for pushing through the plateaus.
My wife and I enjoy trying out new restaurants and the Seattle-Tacoma area gives us plenty of opportunities to do so. Yesterday afternoon we enjoyed sidewalk dining on what was probably the last 80 degree + day until some time next July. Our destination was Pomodoro in the Tacoma’s Proctor neighborhood. This iconic Italian restaurant has been serving up delicious classic Italian food for years but it was our first visit.
Julie ordered the Eggplant Parmesean and I ordered Spaghetti with Meatballs. As soon as the plates arrived at our table we knew we were in for a great meal experience. We ordered house salads with their signature blue cheese dressing. The extra flavors in this salad were evidence that Pomodoro does not serve out-of-the-package meals. And the main courses continued to please and surprise the palate. A very tasty and unique marinara sauce was generously applied over our meals. The meatballs were so much more than Ikea meatballs covered with sauce. These were huge meatballs formed by someone’s hands – not pressed out of some machine! The portions were very generous and we each took leftovers home! I might even be inspired to try making some home made marinara sauce of my own!
Pomodoro’s is a one-of-a-kind Italian restaurant serving up well-prepared meals that vastly out-distance the national chains and even most other local places. This is not fast food so don’t expect fast food prices or portions. Our entrees were around $15 each. Well worth the price of two meals this good! We’ll go back often.