A Marshmallow World 

I went to the doctor’s today and got a clean bill of health, some blood taken from my arm and got the yearly scoot to the edge of the table out of the way.  The doctor seemed unconcerned about both cancer and premature menopause which made me feel good!  The bleeding stopped so there’s no more worry there.  The other interesting thing that happened though was that they questioned me at length about my asthma.  I had to take a special survey about asthma that was primarily directed at looking at how frequently I have to control it with my inhaler.  I had to explain, over and over, that I only need to use my inhaler before I go for a run.  They were kind of bewildered and I finally launched into the whole big news about how I’ve lost 150 pounds through diet and exercise and, for the first time, one of my doctors actually listened to what I was saying and seemed to hear the scope of my project.  She asked if I’d had gastric bypass surgery elsewhere since it wasn’t in her records.  Her eyes widened in surprise when I told her it was all a diet and exercise shift!  Finally, after all these years of begging for an atta girl from my medical professionals by weighing less each time and asking about exercise plans, my doctor smiled and complimented my progress, and even went as far to say that she was impressed.   Then she asked how often I exercise and if I diversify what I do.  She agreed that integrating weightlifting for strength and balance as I age is a great plan.  She also encouraged me to continue running long distances and saw no problems with me pursuing half marathons!  When I mentioned 170 as a goal, she agreed that it was an ideal place for me to shoot for and encouraged me to continue my pursuit of health. It was like all of those things I’ve been fearing got washed aside and I was sort of cleansed with that trip to the doctors office.  Usually I don’t leave feeling like I’m on the right track to that degree!  
You know, I just love sharing the results of my intimate doctor visits with the world.  LOL!  The thirteen year old in myself is simultaneously horrified and in awe that I can speak of such things publicly without dying of embarrassment.  I remember mentally shopping the grocery store aisles in an attempt to come up with the most embarrassing collection of items to purchase when I was a teenager.  I think that, by my grown up standards today, I could come up with a way worse basket.  Life just keeps getting weirder and more embarrassing and we just have to roll with the punches, so thanks for listening!  🙂

Since we were in Lynnwood, home to my Dr.’s, Costco, Trader Joe’s and the Grocery Outlet (bargain market…  I know you sang it) all within a few blocks of one another, we decided to do a big, summer buy.  Our focus was loading up on lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.  Our theory is that a family sized bag of Cheetos costs as much and gets consumed at the same rate as a pound of cherries for the same cost, so we really focused and loaded up on healthy snack options like that.  I know we used to look at grapes like they were spendy but chips like they were cheap and plentiful and it kind of seemed like we might have been swinging back in that direction over the past month.  

We did notice, however, that Trader Joe’s is now carrying vegan marshmallows!!!  To those of you in the mainstream marshmallow world this isn’t a big deal, but to those of us in the vegetarian world it’s HUGE!  Marshmallows are made of vanilla, sugar, gelatin and corn syrup; gelatin is made from animal bones so it’s a common no-no for vegetarians.  When Bradley and I were on our honeymoon in 1999 we stopped the Seventh-day Adventist* church in Oregon on the way down the coast to get some marshmallows for our fireside romantic nights. It was there that we learned that the vegetarian marshmallow factory had blown up and burnt down and there were no more vegetarian marshmallows available anywhere. We were so sad!  Four years later, a new factory was up and running but we could only get the marshmallows through a vegan company through the mail so we would rally our fellow vegetarian friends, split the shipping costs and order a summer’s supply!  Then that company went out of business and we could only get them with coconut on the outside at Whole Foods, refrigerated, in a box of about ten.  For $8.00.  Who pays almost a dollar a marshmaoolw?  I am not that girl, I tell you.  We were stingy with our s’mores.  Last year the vegetarian marshmallows turned up at Target, of all places, and this year, TRADER JOES!  So you can see that marshmallows, while growing in size, color and quantity for most of you- an American institution, if you will, similar to apple pie- was an out of the loop thing for us, and finding them for less than six bucks at the local Trader Joes is cause for celebration!  

* Many followers of the Seventh-day Adventist faith practice vegetarianism, therefore the church usually supports a store that provides vegetarian alternatives to animal protein.

I went to halfmarathons.net to find this accessible and solid training schedule for Gigi and I so we can kick the Beat the Blerch half marathon’s bootay.  We are going to start running three miles this Wednesday.  While I’m going to try to stick closely to this schedule, I’m not going to be insane about it.  I want to hit at least two shorter runs with one longer run per week.  I plan on attending Zumba on Tuesdays or Thursday’s to mix things up, and I also want to incorporate some weight training back into my workout.  I’m not too worried about doing all of the running on the schedule because I believe that the Zumba and hiking have to factor into this somewhere, too, and I don’t want to become so focus driven that I forget to have fun, get all uptight, get crabby, obsess over mileage and schedules…  This is bonding and fun, not boot camp!  Mostly I’m excited that I get to DO IT again!!!


I saw this poem by Nikki Giovanni the other day.  In reference to things happening all over the world and it just keeps sticking.  I keep coming back, rereading it like a song lyric, meditating and thinking and rethinking about it…  

At first I was a vegetarian when I read it.

Then I was an American, a citizen of the world, a teacher, a mother, a wife…  


  1. I am laughing so hard (inside of course, since I’m at work) about you calling it the “yearly scoot to the edge of the table”…that’s genius!

    That half marathon plan is also really similar to the one I used last year. It’s a good plan, and not overwhelming! Good luck, I can’t wait to read about your training (and all the other things too :P).

  2. Paula

    Great to know your health is good. It is such a relief when the Dr confirms it is not cancer. I had my possible issue with that. It felt great to hear those words. I have never tried vegan marshmallows. when we lived in TN there was a Seventh Day Adventist college that had a cafe that we would have lunch in. I am not crazy about the meat alternatives. I really don’t like meat so I skip them. Too processed.

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