Sunday, December 08, 2019

Dancing Transformation

Dancing Transformation

I’m thrilled to say I lost 3 pounds last week (45.8 so far) due to myWW Purple Plan and dancing in lines. I have now progressed from non-dancer status to getting a standing ovation from my whole line dancing class. Let me explain: Paul, my instructor, was dancing the Country Waltz (my favorite line dance) with me, while the rest of the class danced solo. Paul is the only male in our class, therefore he’s very much in demand as a partner (lucky me).

As Paul and I one, two, threed our way from Texas to the big Montana sky (dancing to Say Goodbye to Montana) I lost myself in the music and movement. When the song ended, the whole class erupted in applause. Does it count as a standing ovation if everyone is already standing? Does it count as applause for me if the students typically clap at the end of a dance? Did I look like an idiot when I thanked the crowd for acknowledging my progress and they were just randomly clapping? It doesn’t matter! I did NOT look like an idiot while dancing in public and having the time of my life.

So again, I thank the person on Connect who suggested that I take a line dancing class. I also started attending a senior swing class with some Latin rhythms. Stay tuned for some salsa spiced thoughts.


Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, December 06, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty-five

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley

Chapter Twenty-five                                                   

I think next year WW should have a float in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. All WW members would live in a crate in New Jersey until the big day. We would then have to audition for the part of WW Float cast member.

To get the part, we would have had to do the usual WW requirements while living in our crate like, tracking, tallying points and trimming our portions. Otherwise known as the Triple T strategy.

The second part of our audition would require the willingness to be filled with nitrous oxide (laughing gas) which is actually denser than air. We don’t want to float away with all the helium filled balloons surrounding us. Instead of singing for the crowd in front of Macy’s, we would all be laughing uncontrollably to let the world know how happy WW members are. It would be a cacophony of laughter. (I just like to say cacophony!)

I once experienced laughing gas first hand at a tooth extraction session. (Think fear of the sadistic dentist in the movie “Marathon Man.”) I drove myself home, laughing out loud the whole way. Going to the oral surgeon is so much fun!

And finally, our audition judges would measure our wind speed (excuses for not losing weight) with the dreaded anemometer! I will leave it to your imagination (mine is vivid) to figure out how this works.

I actually got to ride on the Green Giant Float in the parade this year. That’s me in the picture waving to the crowd. I was selected for this honorary position due to the number of vegetables, especially green ones, consumed by me this year. At the bottom of the picture, but out of sight, is my handler, a food police officer, one of New York’s finest. He kept me following the letter of WW law to reach my half-way to goal milestone.

I wish you luck on your audition next year. I plan on being 100% at goal (minus a few pounds more as a safety flotation device). Send me your ideas for the theme of our WW Float 2020. See you in New York next year and in Connect next week.

Until then, be aware of your TTT and be happier.


Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, November 29, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty-four

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley                           

Chapter Twenty-four

(Answering your phone call to me) “Sandy the Elf here, what’s your favorite color?”

Mine is purple, in more ways than one. I recently saw the musical production of “Elf” at the University of California, Pennsylvania, my alma mater. ( I’m still searching for my alma pater, but those records are sealed.) I smiled from beginning to end, and as an aspiring humor writer, I want to say that “I just like to smile, smiling’s my favorite.”

As an elf and a WW member I know that “We elves try to stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corns and syrup.” We humans try to exercise portion control. The elf side of me and the human WW side of me are in a constant tug-of-war. My fractured personalities can emerge in a heartbeat. One second I am WW member extraordinaire, the next second I am a “cotton-headed ninny-muggins!” I promised Santa (Coach Kathy) that 2020 would be less syrupy!

“I passed through the seven levels of the Candy Cane Forest (Hell), through the sea of swirly twirly gum drops (guilt trips), and then I walked through the Lincoln Tunnel (Liberty Tunnel, hey I’m in Pittsburgh, afterall!)” to get half way to my goal weight. I need to stay off Santa’s naughty list to reach and maintain my magic number. (110 pounds...I lied, but then I also once lied to my anesthesiologist assuming he would add a few pounds to my chart!) Although I’m not proud of it, I’ve been known to “sit on a throne of lies,” and let me tell you, lies have been known to cause a prickly butt rash and weight gain!

So let me just say that “gum on the street is not free candy,” nor is it zero smart points, nor is it very smart to chew leftovers of any kind, especially if you just finished a meal.

As we celebrate our Thanksgiving successes: including but not limited to such non scale victories as avoiding arguments with relatives, considering family drama the latest blockbuster movie for your viewing pleasure, creating rubber body armor where insults bounce off your sensitive spots (mine are located in both knees and lower back), setting your default response to laughter instead of tears, we can now count down the days to more holiday fun (agony). Either we can employ the strategies listed above, or become a holiday hermit.

I’m going to take the advice of my friend, Buddy the Elf, who told me that the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear. So I’m singing, I’m in a WW blog and I’m singing. And to paraphrase Buddy, I’m following a nice purple WW plan. It’s very purpley!

Until next week, remember that Santa is coming and “there’s room for everyone on the Nice List!” Be nicer and happier!


Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, November 22, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty-three


The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley                                     

Chapter Twenty-three

I’ve got the blues, the purples and the greens this week. The blues are depressing and “it’s not easy being green.” So I’m trying out the pretty, purple WW plan to tease my palate into 16 Smart Point submission. My secret weapon is potatoes.They are my favorite vegetable.I have read that a potato contains more potassium than a banana. This is a good thing. I have also read that potato eyes are toxic to humans. This is a very bad thing .I have promised myself not to eat any eyeballs, but wondered if it is bad for me to eat eyes hiding in potato skins which are good for me.I also read that the first potatoes arrived in North America via Bermuda in 1621.Therefore, in my opinion, potato immigrants should be allowed to stay here because they are tasty.

“So, how’s the purple plan working out for you so far?” I asked myself.

Myself answered, “Great! It’s only Tuesday (my weigh-in day is Saturday) and I’ve had taters both baked and mashed, and my taste buds were screaming with zero point delight.”

For four days now, I’ve stayed within my point range, tracked those points religiously, fought off hunger pangs with fruits, veggies, chicken, sticks and stones. And here’s the funny thing: I’m losing weight! Even funnier, I think I would be losing weight on “Joseph’s Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” Plan if I played by the rules.

So here’s my game plan. I’m going to stick with purple for the recommended time (I think it’s twelve years), and then I’m going to return to Blue Land where I get more points and can still have potatoes with butter and salt. But this time, I promised my coach that I would memorize the WW Rule Book and follow it. But I’m starting to worry because Coach Kathy has been spotted carrying a bunch of yellow penalty flags in her back pocket. Will I have to move 5 rows back? Well, I decline the penalty because it wasn’t me committing the infraction.

Until next week, play by the rules, be thinner and happier.And remember, food is color blind.

Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Weight Watchers vs Writer's Workshop

Weight Watchers vs Writer’s Workshop

As a retired Pittsburgh Public School teacher, I often have memories (nightmares) of fun times in the classroom. One vivid memory stands out. My principal, Kim Jong-un, was in the classroom, clipboard in hand, for an unannounced observation. I asked the students to get out their Weight Watcher journals. In my defense, I had not been drinking from my bottom desk drawer (yet). WW can also stand for Writer’s Workshop, which is what I really meant. The lesson was all down hill skiing from there. Wondering why I didn’t get a Distinguished rating?


Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, November 15, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty-two


The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley

Chapter Twenty-two

I’ve taken the advice of someone who commented on a previous post of mine, Chapter Seventeen to be exact. She suggested Why Not learn to Line Dance. So this week I found myself at my local YMCA in a huge room with beautiful hardwood floors, floor to ceiling mirrored wall, a husband/wife team of instructors and a weekly $2.00 class fee. What could go wrong?

Let me just say class did not start well for me. I have never learned to dance. Even in high school, which was about a century ago, I was the wallflower observer at dances. At weddings, I pretended to have a good time, while others danced the evening away. My daughter once convinced me to take a group East Coast Swing lesson at Wightman School in Pittsburgh with Bobby D. I was so lost that a gentleman named Kennedy (first name), took pity on me by taking me out in the hall for private remedial instruction. I’m happily married (most of the time), but my daughter still refers to Kennedy as my boyfriend. Anyway, you now have an idea of my dancing skills.

So back to The Electric Slide which was the first of three dances taught at the YMCA. The first problem was that everyone but me seemed to already know how to do this dance. Note to self: Never stand in the very back of a Line Dance class because everyone will eventually turn around and you will be leading the class! Choose the middle. I was so lost, I retreated to wallflower status, holding back tears and judging the distance to the exit door leading to my car.A female “Kennedy” took pity on me. Again, I had remedial instruction, and was encouraged to stay.

The next two dances were the Ah Si! and Ms.Jody’s Thang, which were new to everyone. Was I actually dancing? Was I actually enjoying myself? Was that me getting a dancing compliment from Instructor Paul? Is there hope for me after all?

This post is WW related because I went home and practiced these dances all week by printing out the dance steps and dancing along with YouTube videos. At my WW workshop today, I earned a 1.6 pound loss, which kicked me off my plateau (see Chapter Twenty-one). This reinforced WW Truth #5: Fun Wins from a recent WW Weekly.

Next week in dance class, we will be learning The Texas Waltz and Fly Me To The Moon Line Dances. I plan on being there and will “Dance Like There’s Nobody Watching!”

When my third child has a wedding reception, I plan on being at goal and dancing like the world is watching in awe!

Until next week, conquer your insecurities and be happier.

Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Saturday, November 09, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty-one

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley

Chapter Twenty-one

Help! I’m stuck on a plateau. I’m thinking before I call for a Black Hawk helicopter rescue mission, perhaps I should try to help myself climb down the WW Mountain. There’s no need for an air evacuation just yet, although I have it on good authority that the Army personnel inside these beasts actually look forward to the challenge of accomplishing any mission. I will keep them on speed dial, just in case.

Make no mistake about it, our WW plateaus are active battlefields filled with danger. Should we just stagnate, and hope for weight loss? Should we whine about how the WW program is not working? Should we be jealous of all the Lifetime WW members whose fat just magically disappeared? Or should we stand up and fight for ourselves?

So as of right now, you have all been deployed. I’m moving you into position for military action. We have already formed a united front in this combat zone.Let’s get off this plateau together. Personally, I’m going back to our basic training. But this time, I’m exerting more effort. We can do better at tracking, portion control, more zero point foods, measuring (food and ourselves), weighing (food, not ourselves), water consumption, mindset, activity and reality checks.

Keep in mind that geographical plateaus are important. They are storehouses of minerals such as gold, silver, coal, iron and manganese. I have no idea why I need manganese, but perhaps these rich deposits on my plateau are causing weight gain. Therefore, I am limiting my manganese, and opting for more gold and silver on my downward trek off this mountain.

Let’s go troops. I’ll lead you in our military cadence:

I don’t know but I been told, zero points are good as gold! Sound off! One, two, Sound off! Three, four.

Until next week, keep marching downward, stay strong and be happier.

Thank you for your service.


Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Saturday, November 02, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Twenty


The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley
                                                                               
Chapter Twenty                                                                 

Driving through a thick fog is frightening and dangerous. Living in a cloud of fuzzy thinking can have equally disastrous results. One way to clear the fog is to take responsibility for our own actions.

People just seem to blame others for their own actions. For example, I was almost killed in a grocery store parking lot. I was pushing my grocery cart back to my car. A lady started backing up her car even though I was already past the middle of her trunk. I literally accelerated my body from 0 to 60 to avoid this collision. She rolled down her window and proceeded to tell me how this was my fault. I exchanged a few angry words with her, and wished her good luck with the “not my fault” defense when she injures someone with her carelessness. A simple, “I’m sorry, I didn’t see you” apology would have helped return my blood pressure to normal.

This incident had me thinking about all the times I’ve blamed others for my weight gain. In an instant I can descend into Dante’s third circle of Hell: Gluttony. Wow, is it ever foggy in here. I’m so angry, stressed, happy, tired, bored (choose your own adjective) that all I want to do is eat.

Applying for my Real ID card made me want to eat mindlessly. If you think you have the correct documentation, you will be wrong. Just send for a new birth certificate and wedding certificate right now to save yourself a lot of aggravation and smart points.You will also spend hours waiting to find out that you need new stuff. Be sure to have breakfast before you go to the DMV. I’m proud to say I did not succumb to gluttony. I took my ticket showing my place in line, went home to make a nutritious breakfast, ate it leisurely, went back to the DMV where they still hadn’t called my number two hours later and waited some more until my number was finally called. Score: DMV 0 vs Me 1. I’m finally learning the rules of the WW Game of Life. Thank you Milton Bradley and Coach Kathy.

I recently discovered author, Peter De Vries, who said, “Gluttony is an emotional escape, a sign something is eating us.” So let’s not get eaten alive. Let’s accept responsibility for our actions and emerge from our foggy thinking into crystal clear clarity.

Until next week, be happier and thinner when you smile for your Real ID card.



Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, October 25, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Nineteen


The Lighter Side of Weight Loss
By Sandra Warholic Seeley                         
Chapter Nineteen

WW just challenged me to eat the rainbow. My first thought was that’s great, I love rainbow sherbet! My second thought was this challenge is better than the ice bucket challenge! In third place came the thought that I can’t remember the sentence that helped me remember the colors of the rainbow in order.

So I’ve created my own sentence that I’m hoping will rainbow-lize your future meals: Rush out yonder, go buy interesting vegetables!

Once you’ve purchased the rainbow, I suggest you set a beautiful table and ask Duke Ellington to set a “Mood Indigo” for you while you eat some indigo and violet. My personal favorites are black cherries, plums, prunes, raisins and purple eggplant. I lied. These are not my personal favorites. In fact, I’ve never even tried eggplant, which I hope to change when I rush out yonder!

I’m calling on my 1984 self to channel Rainbow Brite back into existence. We all need this brave young girl to make our world, hearts and bodies lighter by infusing our darkness with color. In the meantime, I suggest we all eat more colorful foods.

When temptation comes calling, think of him as a leprechaun or Hawaiian menehune playing tricks on you.These mischievous imps do not want you to find their pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. But we have the tools to outsmart Mr. Temptation. Eat that United Dairy rainbow sherbert, track the half cup serving for 7 smart points and stay within your point range for the day.

We are all searching for that elusive pot of gold, otherwise known as GOAL-ED! It’s there waiting for us. We all have to believe in our dreams and work hard enough to achieve them. And remember that “Somewhere over the rainbow, dreams that you dream of really do come true.”

Until next week. Keep dreaming, choose color and be happier!

Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.

Friday, October 18, 2019

The Lighter Side of Weight Loss: Chapter Eighteen






The Lighter Side of Weight Loss                   
 By Sandra Warholic Seeley                                                         

Chapter Eighteen

I feel fairly certain that all of us have experienced the frustration of yo-yo weight loss. A recent WW Weekly reminded us to rewind in order to move forward. No matter how hard we wish that Duncan Windrunner, Roadrunner, Big Fun or Pulse toy would work again, it becomes stagnant unless we rewind that string!

I prefer to think of my weight loss journey as a carousel ride. Yes, I’m riding the up and down horse, but I’m moving forward in a counter clockwise direction (unless I’m a Brit, then my horse is cantering clockwise) at the same time. And guess what? I’m having a blast and I’m that little girl again who loves horses (note to Santa: I still want one for Christmas).

Close your eyes (after you read this) and come with me to Kennywood Park on a nostalgic trip to this Pittsburgh amusement park which also happens to be a National Historic Landmark. We head straight to the Merry-Go-Round to claim one of the 50 jumping horses, by-passing the 14 stationary ones and the lion and tiger and benches for old people. The ride start/stop bell clangs with urgency. We are mounted and ready to trot as the Wurlitzer Military Band Organ plays some of the happiest calliope style music in the world. Our eyes and hearts are shining as brightly as the 1500 lights accompanying us on this ride. We can still see Mr. Kennywood, Anthony Sacramento, the Merry-Go-Round operator for close to sixty years, weaving around our stallions to collect our tickets. And then we are merrily on our way, up and down in a rolling forward motion. I’m crying as I write this because I can still see Mom and Dad waving at me each time my horse takes me around to them. A few more tears because now I hear the calliope version of “Let Me Call You Sweetheart”, a song my Dad always sang to me. Stop the world, I DON’T want to get off, I’m having way too much fun!

Moving forward on my weight loss journey, I want my life to be a carousel ride. Yes, my weight fluctuates, but that makes the ride more interesting. It also makes me want to stay on my horse longer, like for a LIFETIME. I want to hear the music and see the kaleidoscopic colors of days gone by.

Let’s meet next year at Kennywood Park. We’ll sit on the bench that Cowboy Joe has been occupying for decades and swap weight loss “yarns” with each other. Of course, we’ll ride the Merry-Go-Round together and realize just how successful our carousel horseback ride has been. So reserve the date: May 2, 2020. See you soon.

Until next week: Climb on your horses, enjoy the ride and be happier!




Sandra Warholic Seeley - All my life, and half of someone else's, I have lived in a humorous place called Earth. My muse is a tiny menehune from the island of Oahu in Hawaii where I lived for a year. Ernest Hemingway once sat under the exact same coconut tree where I did most of my writing. I'm also a sensitive to criticism Virgo who loves to get paid for writing and speaking funny stuff. Even though my mind is filled with volcanic ash residue and I'm still finding sand in my shorts, I will continue to write until my muse retires or I run out of pretty blue drinks, whichever comes first. Don't be bashful, email the author.
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