Hello Southern Hemispherites!!

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  • FD finished,
    Nothing till after 3pm then hot milk
    *5.30pm small apple.
    *7pm soup made on a vegie stock cube, carrot, zucchini, broccoli, and a bit of Asian leafy greens, fresh calamari, with part of a Vietnamese herb pot, fresh coriander and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
    *3 strawberries, a little canned unsweetened apple, with low fat unsweetened home made yoghurt.
    524 calories.

    All my calories are best used in the later part of the day, preferably after 6pm, as I’m a member of The Hunger Dragon Clan. I learned over time not to eat lunch on a FD as it set off a ridiculous amount of hunger. The only thing that works OK is a bit of milk but it has to be after 3pm. I never eat till after 12 on any day. Never wanted breakfast all my life, and I found 12 noon was my good place to eat after on my non-fast days.


    Hi Thin,
    Lovely to start learning of your travels and boat adventures!

    I’ve sent penguin a short email to let them know we’re all thinking of them.

    Morning from a crisp and sunny Brisbane.

    Thin, nice to read of your travels (and travails). Oxfordshire is such a nice part of the world. Hope the weather improves for you.

    I know it is amusing to Northern Hempisphereites, and those from the southern states, for Queenslanders to complain of the cold, but it has been really chilly here so far this winter and I am pleased the days will get longer from now on. Our house is on a north/south axis, and used to be flooded with sunshine in winter, but our trees have grown in the front and should have been given a haircut around May, but we didn’t do it so we don’t have as much sunshine in the courtyard. OH lit the fire on Saturday and it was beautiful. The children were mesmerised.

    Cinque, those poor sleepers! DD’s girls were dreadfully difficult to get into bed …the younger one (5) still so. (The 8 year old just reads herself to sleep). I remember well the older one, as a 2 year old, standing in her cot in the middle of the night bellowing ‘me want dous dous’ (couscous). Anything to get up. I hope your 3 night experiment with the 6 year old helps her to turn a corner, without exhausting you.

    These last few kilos are proving hard to shift. Up down, up down. Any tips, anyone?

    Well done Merry on a successful FD. Are you going for 500, or 800 cals a day?

    OK second coffee time. Great day all.

    Woot! Woot! I clicked on this thread and went straight to the last page!

    Hello everyone,

    (Now I have had to click on the page before to see all the posts haha)

    Merry, so sorry that this week’s weighing was a disappointment, but look! You are back on the horse with all those lessons, hard learnt, kicking in.
    And it is lovely for all of us, having you here again.

    I am so glad you have emailed the Penguins.

    Thin, fingers crossed you did get all the rust. With your practice of doing things properly, the odds are that you did.
    I am annoyed with your poor signal too, I miss your posts daily. But hooray for this lovely long catch up.

    You will have such fun with that wildlife (etc) camera!

    I’ve been reading about UPF too. It is interesting that the Ultra Processing does things beyond basic nutrition and fibre. One of my lovely twin doctors did a program about it https://www.uclh.nhs.uk/news/bbc-documentary-featuring-uclh-clinicians-highlights-harms-ultra-processed-food which has been big in my twitter feed, and I am waiting for it to be shown here.

    What a great catch up with those school friends, and I can also relate to thinking something is a miserably small serve, but actually it is nicely calculated.

    Supermarkets Aaargggh!

    Have a lovely time with DD in beautiful Oxford <3

    Hello Lindsay!
    I understand about the cold. I remember the look on the face of my Canadian friend when I complained about a wintry Melbourne morning. Haha. It is all relative.

    So sad to be without that lovely winter sun coming in. What a tricky decision to make between trees and sun, I hope they get their haircut next year.

    Oh those kiddies and sleep. I’m laughing at the couscous demand.
    Miss 6 is extremely sensitive to noises, and there are such different noises here. Hopefully that is the main thing, and a few nights might not only help now, but may reset her brain to include my place in her ‘safe places’ file. Her anxiety is stepped up because she is scared of cats, even Miso, and spiders (eep, daddylonglegs in the bathroom) and dogs, that pass by.
    We will try!
    She tries so hard herself, dear little heart. I just hope I can do enough to help her.

    Oh dear, those last few kilos. I’m wriggling my witchy fingers and sending magick through the screen to bump them off. Hope it works!

    I’ve had my breakfast, off now to clean my kitchen and then reward myself with my second cup of coffee. I really need to henna my hair and there is some sunshine now, so I think I can motivate myself to do that.

    I’ve got grilled chicken, sweet corn, and greens for lunch, and soup with a mini warrigal greens frittata for supper.

    Fast day tomorrow.

    Best wishes everyone.

    Afternoon everyone

    Woot! I’m the same Cinque, I came straight to the last page of the thread too.

    I had a little bit of a slip in the weekend with my eating, but other than that I haven’t been too bad. I’m getting into the swing of exercising in the evening but not seeing too much movement in my waist measurement, hopefully something will click soon and I can start shedding these extra kilos.

    Lindsay, don’t look at me, I’m having the same issue. up and down on alternate weeks but trending up 🙁

    Merry, that’s great, hopefully we’ll hear back from penguin soon.

    Have a great one everyone, wish me luck for my weigh-in tomorrow.

    Hi everyone,

    Lindsay, I’m aiming for 500cals on my 2 FDs, and when I get another couple of kgs off I’ll switch it to whatever is 1/4 of my TDEE on FDs. My Goal Weight is 62kgs and last time I was doing 325 cals/FD. I’m unable to be normally active due to having ME/CFS so while I’m not totally sedentary, I can’t use exercise as a way to help. I have to do it all with food strategies, timing, mostly not drinking calories.

    Checkin after FD:
    69.0kg, so what I put on last week I took off plus a bit more. Sort of a “5:2 Honeymoon” weightloss period. Back in the saddle!;)

    Wishing you the very best for your weigh in tomorrow Neil.

    See you tomorrow!

    Down 200g last week, now sitting on 98.0 kilos. It’s not much, but it’s baby steps towards getting back on track. This is the first time in a long time that I’ve managed to have 2 losses in consecutive weeks. Normally it’s been a loss followed by a gain with the trend always being up.

    Have a good one everyone.

    Good morning,
    It’s a fast day and I might not be in the best mood for it, so I will head out to distract myself (since the op shops are open 🙂 )

    Merry and Neil, so glad to read good reports from you this morning. Hooray.
    What a lovely relief.

    I kept the soup for today (ate a yummy ramekin of goodness instead yesterday). I will poach some chicken to add to it, and have two small meals.

    Great news that Victoria seems to be the first place in the world to completely stamp out a Delta variant breakout. Fingers crossed Sydney will do the same, and that NZ might not need to, but can if it does need to.

    Sending best wishes to you all

    Hello friends

    Busy weekend, busy at work so apologies for not posting for several days

    Helen Kate, Merry, Neil – you are all doing so well getting back on that horse. I had a mis-step on the weekend but back in the saddle this week

    I love that picture of the Fisherman in Hanoi Lindsay. It took me right back there

    So glad you had a lovely birthday Cinque

    Thin, I had a go at my labrador friends as they were saying how warm it was and then we turned on the world test cricket final and all the crowd were rugged up like it was the middle of winter. They said (a) what the heck does rugged up mean? and (b) the ‘heatwave’ lasted 4 days and then it turned cold again. I couldn’t live there; if I don’t see the sun for more then 2 days I go into withdrawal and that cold we experienced on our trip was something I don’t want to experience again!

    You are doing so well LJ, despite being busy and having social activities. I bet your garden will be beautiful once you get those trees in. Please take a picture if you can

    Have to run, take care all

    Dear all

    Cinque, I absolutely loved ‘the chicken that flew’! It will become a staple. And yes I did sleep well after my hearty supper – I ate more than I should have but don’t feel too bad about it because it was so healthy.

    And while on the subject of recipes, I have some quinces a friend gave me and remember you mentioning a quince tagine a while ago. I’m wondering if you could point me towards a recipe. Thanks Cinque.

    Neil, great that you are on the downward trend. And you too, Merry.

    Neil, I am impressed that you manage to exercise late in the day. If I don’t exercise in the morning it just doesn’t happen, no matter what resolutions I make.

    Lindsay, people from Adelaide head to Queensland to escape from our winter coldness, so we do tend to forget that it can get cold for you too. But how nice to have a wood fire. Cold weather has its pleasures.

    Thin, I love reading of your boat. An expanse of violas – how beautiful! Also how lovely to be meeting up with your daughter in Oxford. I am hoping to visit my daughter in Sydney in mid-August. Let’s hope everything settles down there Covid-wise before then. Thin, I am intrigued by your FD chicken recipe. Some time I’d love to know what it is.

    Cinque, like you I am fasting today. I am not in great shape for it but am in much need of it. I had people here on Monday evening for a winter solstice drinks-and-nibbles gathering. I over-catered as I always do and then over-ate the leftovers yesterday, culminating in a feast of corn chips and hummus as I lay on the couch in the evening reading a good novel. It was fun at the time but didn’t make me feel great about myself! And I am tired and a bit jaded today. Should have sent those leftovers home with my guests!

    Best wishes to everyone

    Hi Helen Kate, I’ve been using my kids’ evening activities to my advantage.

    My kids have swimming lessons on Monday, Parkour on Tuesday and Thursday and youth group on Friday. I used to drop them off, go home for an hour or so, then go and pick them up again. Now I drop them off and then go to the gym. I get enough time to get changed, work out for 45 minutes, shower and change before I pick them up again. It’s worked pretty well so far.

    Good evening all.

    After a couple of very busy days I was very glad of a quieter day today.
    On Monday, despite both morning tea and afternoon tea at cafes I managed a FD – just a cup of tea at each venue and lots of conversation (I was channeling Thin). I also ended up doing an unplanned FD yesterday because I was out all day and just took 2 pieces of fruit with me, with a healthy dinner it was within the FD calories. This reinforces what I really already knew – it’s much easier to not eat when you have a busy day to distract you.
    With my weight still above my preferred range, it was a well timed B2B. Today is a careful GFD, with another tomorrow, and I’ll do a further FD Friday. I have a birthday brunch to go to on Saturday and as it’s at someone’s house I am not in control of the menu.

    HK, leftovers from entertaining are always dilemma. I usually try to send everything I can’t freeze home with guests – luckily most of my friends and rellies don’t bake so they are usually quite receptive. On the positive side, you did have a lovely evening with friends.

    Neil, this week’s loss might not be massive, but this does represent consecutive losses and that is a great turn around to be proud of.

    Cinque, the program on ultra processed foods that you mentioned was shown on the ABC last night. As it was late I recorded it and watched this morning. It was pretty scary as it showed what processed food does to fullness receptors and hunger hormone. Even more alarmingly, it possibly has an effect on the brain that does not reverse when you ditch the junk food and go back to a healthy diet. The program was called “What Are We Feeding Our Kids?” If you missed it, it’s hopefully on Iview for a couple of weeks.
    I saw this recipe this morning and thought it might appeal to you: https://www.notquitenigella.com/2021/06/23/rice-spinach-pie/ It’s a spinach and leek pie, but the “pastry” is actually a bread dough. I think it’s a good idea actually because pastry has such a high fat content and bread dough doesn’t. Even if I don’t make this pie, I am pondering pie fillings that might work with a bread dough pastry.

    Anzac, isn’t it funny that sayings that are part of our normal speech are so foreign to those in other countries, we just take them for granted. Although I would have thought “all rugged up” was pretty self explanatory – unless they thought it meant everyone was wearing a toupee.

    Merry, glad you had a loss this week.
    I used to aim for 1/4 of my TDEE in the early years of 5:2 although I rarely manage it these days – much more likely to be 500 (or even a little above).

    Lindsay, your grandchild stories always provide amusement. What a thing for 2 year old to demand in the middle of the night.

    Thin, I hope you have a lovely time catching up with your daughter in Oxford.
    I seem to remember it was a pretty town with lots of rather old stone buildings – although I may be remembering another place as I wasn’t there long.

    Hello to everyone else, hope you are having a good week.

    It’s particularly cold here at present so I’ve been looking through my cookbooks looking for soup ideas. I’ve decided to make one of Mollie Katzen’s creamy tomato soup recipes. Oddly it’s thickened with cream cheese – the tartness of it works beautifully in the tomato soup. Although the cream cheese contains plenty of calories, the rest of the soup is low cal veg and herbs so it’s still a good choice even on a FD.

    Cold! With winter sun, my favourite sun.

    I was up early cooking breakfast. Yes I got through my fast day (thankyou three opshops for helping distract me). And my breakfast was excellent, avocado and kimchi on lovely toast from a loaf I cooked yesterday.

    Also distracting me I had an appt with my eye specialist, and a month of glaucoma drops has eased the pressure in my bad eye to normal levels. Thankyou modern optometry for catching it early.

    Great opshop haul! Summer sandals, perfect fit, all leather, contoured sole, burnt orange, unworn. Summer dress, cotton and linen, my style 😄 . 100% silk summer top. All I have to do now is wait for summer.
    Plus a pair of the loose viscose trousers I wear as pyjama pants (and keep wearing all day).
    Also Emma Wiggle pyjamas for my yellow loving granddaughter that look new.

    Anzac, keep snug.
    Have you got all your inspirational saying pinned up around your work station and on the walls everywhere? Have you been checking through your wardrobe to thrill at the lovely clothes you will get into again? (I’ve got about an inch to lose off my waist so I can do up my favourite winter trousers.)

    HK, I am SO glad your loved The Chicken That Flew. You have it exactly right, it is such a humble little dish but hearty and delicious.

    Here is the Quince Tagine recipe

    1/2 kg chuck steak in bitesized pieces (it was originally lamb)
    Brown in ghee and/or oil in batches then set aside
    1 chopped onion to the pan and fry til golden
    Then add
    1 tbsp tomato paste
    1 tsp gr cumin
    1 tsp gr coriander
    1/2 tsp gr ginger
    1 cinnamon stick
    Stir well and then add
    a large cup of chicken stock
    add the meat back and stir well, deglazing
    then arrange 1 quince in wedges, cored, over the top
    Pressure cook 20 mins on high. Natural release.

    If you don’t use a pressure cooker, then all in a casserole, with an extra cup or so of stock, and about and hour and a half in the oven (guessing, I have never made it this way, but check out this, slightly more complicated recipe https://www.taste.com.au/recipes/lamb-quince-tagine/7dd5ed1a-d2cf-4dca-bc22-8f9d7481d75e).

    I make double quantity except for the quince and the cinnamon, and generally add a pinch of saffron too.

    Yikes it is nearly zoomsisters time and I need to hang clothes on the line. Part 2 later!

    Back again,

    HK, incase Thin doesn’t get a good enough signal for a while, check out this thread https://thefastdiet.co.uk/forums/topic/southern-hemispherites-fd-recipes/ as I am pretty sure Thin’s chicken recipe is there… maybe the chicken and bacon casserole.

    Good luck working out how to deal with leftovers in a way that doesn’t effect your health. A global problem!

    Neil, lovely plan.

    LJoyce, hooray for a quieter day. Hooray for such brilliant socialising.
    Mmm yum, that creamy soup will hit the spot.

    Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou for that info re the “What are we feeding our children” program. I completely missed it. I see it is available on iview until September, but I will watch it today 🙂

    Another few days and I will have eaten my freezer bare, so I am starting to think what to make next. Ooh so many choices.

    Cheers all, best wishes for a good day.

    Hello all

    Neil, what a good way to use that time while your kids are at their activities. Brilliant!

    LJoyce, I’m so impressed by you just having cups of tea at your morning and afternoon tea engagements. There’s always for me that dangerous moment of wavering at the beginning but you stayed firm and enjoyed yourself. Great!

    Cinque, your op shop haul sounds brilliant. And thank you very much for the tagine recipe. I don’t have a pressure cooker so shall do the casserole in the oven version. And thank you for directing me to Thin’s chicken recipe – and to all the other interesting recipes on that thread.

    Good recipes for the very wintry days we are are having.

    All the best to everyone.

    HK, I find that I can easily limit myself to just a cuppa in some specific settings: cafes at mid morning or mid afternoon, or in my own home with or without guests. However if I’m at someone else’s house it’s much more difficult to refuse all the food they put in front of me – my upbringing tells me that is ill mannered as it might offend your host. I also have difficulty not eating at a cafe if it’s a meal time, although my best friend is fine with this as she knows I do FDs. It means I’m often keen to pick the place and time of a catch up when possible.
    I hope your beef (or lamb) and quince tagine is wonderful.

    Cinque, it sounds like you had some lovely finds op shopping – ready for summer.

    I was doing well with my GFD until I decided to clear out everything on several of the pantry shelves and reorder them properly – so I can easily see what I have and don’t end up with too many multiples. Although I managed to sensibly group the items and put them back in neatly, in the process I found an easter gift I’d forgotten about. It was a small bag of dark chocolate coated dried strawberries. I opened it intending to have a couple. Unfortunately I have just eaten the last one. Definitely not a GFD! I will make amends with a FD tomorrow, and have removed a tub of cauliflower cheese soup out of the freezer for tomorrow’s dinner.

    Good morning, cold Saturday,

    I watched the program on ultra processed food (thanks again LJoyce). It was really good. Accessible without compromising the science. Highly recommended. Not just for people with kids!

    Helen Kate, it certainly is the weather to bring out the recipe books and look up those comforting hearty dishes.

    I am similar to LJoyce, I nearly always prefer to have just a coffee when I am out with friends and concentrate on conversation.
    (Exception of a croissant at Babkas which I pull to pieces and eat very happily while conversing :D. Only time I have a croissant).

    LJoyce, good work with the pantry reordering and oops but yum with the strawberry chocolates. Well, they were enjoyed and have now gone, and you will love your reordered pantry.

    I bought three huge chicken breasts the other day (each one is nearly as big as a chook!) I was REALLY hungry for chicken. I put them to brine and am now a bit sick of chicken. I have had five meals from them already! Yummy meals, but still.
    I’ve decided to use them up rather than sorting out freezing brined chicken, and it is fun using them in different ways (first three meals with them were just grilled). Tonight it will be Tom Kha Gai. Tomorrow it will be miso soup with chicken (Fast Day!).
    Hmm, there will still be a bit left, I might see how it freezes. (5 mins later. Google says freeze it in the brine). Sorted.

    Well, now you are up with my kitchen thoughts I’ll head off and make another cup of coffee.

    Cheers all

    Greetings all

    It is cold and wet here in Adelaide. FD today and I’ve just had a bowl of carrot, parsnip and ginger soup. Love that ginger!

    Normally my FD is Saturday but I postponed it so I could join my sister and her husband in a celebratory glass of champagne, because yesterday they collected their new dog, Paddy, a beautiful lagotto puppy. What a great addition to the family! I will be back-up carer and am looking forward to it, though the sisal matting may take a bit of a beating until he is trained.

    LJoyce, I could totally relate to the chocolate-covered strawberries episode. Once a packet like that has been opened it’s pretty impossible not to just get it over and done with! And best just to enjoy it.

    It’s my daughter’s birthday today, over in lockdown Sydney. She started the day with a run and a swim – Sydney’s weather today is very different from Adelaide’s! She and her partner will have some nice takeaway, and are pretty content to be at home in their apartment with their little dog. I am glad to know they have both had their Pfizer. And I hope things will be all sorted out before my planned visit in August.

    Now I am going out for a walk – and will call in on my sister to have another dose of the delicious little dog.

    All the best to everyone
    Helen Kate

    Hi all.
    I must have turned off the automatic emails…I thought you’d all been very quiet. So, I won’t even try to catch up, because I am on the island and pairing with my phone, so limiting my internet.

    Cinque, how did your granddaughter’s extended sleepover go? You are an amazing grandmother…..I hope you were able to help her settle to another safe place.

    LJ my grandchildren give me hours of fun….maybe not in the wee small hours, but they always entertain. My DD and SIL have a dinner routine, where the children have to ask a question, to trigger a discussion. The 5 year-old left them speechless the other week with her question. “Mum, why would anyone want to marry an engineer.” No idea where it came from, or even that she knew any engineers (with apologies to any on this forum).

    My weight is 2 kilos from my target. Oh so slow. It won’t be helped by the 4 slices of fresh sourdough I bought this morning, on the way back from our lovely walk with Rosy. But FD tomorrow, and I plug on. It will be exactly 5 months since I started this program with my friend (after doing so well in 2018, and then regaining some of it). I will never ever go over my target ever. Not ever!!

    Still taking clothes to the local tailor for alteration, although I think I’ll wait until summer to have the linens done. So far, five pairs of trousers, four jackets (black, red, aubergine and cobalt blue), two dresses, never worn, and a reversible coat in navy/red. All for under a thousand dollars, which while quite expensive, is much better than replacing them.

    Oh LJ, chocolate strawberries. Of course you had too many. But they are gone now, and I’m sure you enjoyed every one, quite rightly.

    LJ, the mushroom soup from the Fast800 red book is very low cal, and very tasty. OH has it with sourdough, I have it neat on FDs (fewer than 100 cals a big bowl).

    Anzac, totally understand the need to see blue sky and avoid those overcast grey ones. Living in Beijing in summer, the sky was always heavy, grey, with pollution (or the inversion layer, as they said it was). I used to catch the local bus sometimes because it had a panel of blue glass on the top of the windows, and looking out, I could imagine I was seeing blue sky. I’m sure you remember those polluted skies, Betsy?

    Merry, Neil, well done with a loss ….one leads to another, then another, and before you know it you are back where you were.

    Cinque, why do you brine chicken (sorry for my ignorance). Very happy to know the glaucoma drops are doing their work.

    Hope you are all staying safe, being immunised, and not struggling with lockdown, for those of you who are.

    Dear all

    It’s the end of the FD. I have had many bowls of carrot, parsnip and ginger soup, with pepitas sprinkled on top to give it a bit of ‘chew’. It’s been good. Let’s see how I go with sleeping tonight.

    Lindsay, I think I’ve found the Fast 100 mushroom soup by doing a bit of googling, and will try that soon. It sounds as if it would be a bit more substantial and satisfying than the soup I’ve had today.

    It’s been a grey day here in Adelaide with quite a bit of very welcome rain. But even on a cloudy day like today there are times when there are patches of blue sky. It must be horrible to live always under heavy grey skies as people do in Beijing. A friend told me of a visiting Chinese academic who stood in her back garden for a long time just staring at the trees and the openness and above all at the sky.

    My wishes for everyone are the same as Lindsay L’s: I hope everyone is staying safe and getting immunised and, if on lockdown, not having too hard a time with it.

    All the best
    Helen Kate

    Hello everyone,
    a quick good morning as so much to do!

    Good fast day yesterday. Excellent miso soup last night. Delicious egg on toast this morning.

    HK that soup might have kept you hungry, but at least that is the best sign that your fast day is doing it’s job. Good luck on the scales.

    And good luck with the mushroom soup when you try it.

    Happy Birthday to your daughter, I can relate to a contented lock down birthday (I’ve had two in a row). And her day certainly sounds gorgeous.

    And so does that new puppy!
    We need a new puppy here on the forum, Maxx is almost sedate, and even Rosy is settling down.

    Haha am I speaking the truth Anzac and Lindsay?

    Lindsay, I love hearing about those beautiful clothes being beautifully altered.

    The granddaughter sleepover starts tonight. You will be hearing all about it as it goes on I expect. Silence from me is likely to be ominous.

    Those last kilos are being so stubborn, but fart in their general direction (might not be possible 😀 ) and rejoice in those good little kilos that took themselves away as directed. They are the majority.

    Brining chicken breast means they are tender and tasty when I cook them. I just stick them in a jar of salted water, often with a bit of soy sauce too, so they are covered. It also means they last longer in the fridge. (The soy sauce is flavoursome but also makes it look less like a mad scientists laboratory).

    Okay, I’m off to work out all the things I need to do. Bye!

    Good morning all,

    Cinque, HelenKate, I was fasting with you yesterday but it was my worst ever (in seven years). I thought I had two frozen portions of my chicken something. When I took them out, it seemed like perhaps it was only one serve so I made OH a pasta dish instead. Then, as I was eating, it seemed a lot of food so I stopped to assess whether I was full. I was still convinced that there wasn’t enough for two but I was second guessing myself and got in a panic about it because I’m very particular about sticking to my FD cals. I have no idea what I consumed which makes it worthless as a FD. The scales are reflecting that I stopped eating in time but also that we had two pub meals last week, I ate a slice of bread (deadly for me) and drank too much alcohol. 300g up from my desired post-FD weight.

    HK, the chicken somethings I use for FDs are from the Hairy Bikers’ Diet Books. Chicken Bhuna, Chicken Provencal and Chicken Tikka. They serve six so I make three serves, freeze one. The one Cinque refers to on our recipe page is Chicken & Bacon Casserole, you won’t believe it’s a FD meal, delish. I hope your visit to your daughter’s can go ahead. Australia seems in a very different place wrt covid and we can’t really understand the limbo that everyone seems content to endure indefinitely.

    We had a great time with DD cruising into Oxford. Yes, LJ, lots of grand old buildings. Besides the pubs, we visited the Natural Science Museum and University Botanical Gardens. We’re currently on The Thames which is very different to canal cruising but we’re really enjoying it. This Friday, we’re meeting two more of my boarding school friends for another pub lunch. I must be very careful this week.

    Lindsay, when I couldn’t shift the last kg or so during weight loss, I gave up and called it ‘goal’. My body said that’s where I needed to be. Over the next two years, I shifted them and more. If you can lose 1kg per year, you are bucking the trend. I see extremes of health here – a plenitude of fit looking rowers can be seen everywhere on The Thames restoring my hope for Britons after noting swathes of morbidly obese young people cruising about on immobility scooters in some cities.

    Cinque, pleased you had a good op shop haul and your eye is all sorted. I’ve started using my camera trap and will report back soon. It takes high quality colour photos. Yesterday, we saw two kingfishers and a shrew.

    Anzac, how are your mini goals coming along? Grey skies are definitely a mood changer. DD says blue sky is the ‘default’ in Perth, whereas grey is the ‘default’ here.

    Merry, any response from Mr and Mrs Penguin?

    Hi Neil. Hope you’re doing alright.

    Morning all

    We had a rather nasty change in the weather last night. Arctic winds and we got 5cm of snow overnight. It’s hard not to comfort eat when it’s cold and miserable outside but I’m trying. I decided to try 2 weeks on full fast 800 to see if that can get me back in the groove for weightloss. Yesterday went well, I had some raw veg with hummus for lunch and a nice vegetable curry for dinner with a cup of frozen blueberries and a couple of tablespoons of coconut milk for dessert. I’m going to skip my weigh-in this week and focus on getting my eating right rather than the number on the scales.

    Thin, sounds like you’re having a good time over there I can’t wait until the weather over here gets better and we can head out and explore again.

    Cinque, good luck with your daughter’s sleepover, I hope it all goes well.

    Helen Kate, soup is definitely the go in this type of weather. I might make up a batch to take for lunches this week.

    Lindsay, good luck for the remaining 2 kilos. Slow progress is better than no progress or regress.

    Ljoyce, Yes I had that problem as well, being told it’s rude to refuse hospitality certainly hurt me when we visited Fiji. My wife took me round to visit all her family members and every single house gave snacks and sugary milky tea. I was sloshing around by the end of the visit.

    Johnny, I hope the weather clears up for your ride tomorrow. I may actually be able to join you in a couple of weeks because I have some time off in the school holidays to do some work on our house. I’m really disappointed to miss out on the trip out to the springs you visited last week.

    Well I’d better get back to work now, have a great one everyone.

    Hello people

    I am looking after my sister’s puppy today, while she is at work. It is a pleasure and a treat ,and at the same time involves a great deal of reorganisation – the setting up of barriers to keep him contained in the back bit of the house, and the throwing off of cushions and provision of ‘steps’ so that he can safely get on and and off the couch – yes he will be that kind of dog in our houses, but will be well-trained too.

    He’s only been with my sister and her partner since last Saturday but already we all adore him and feels like part of the family. Dogs do that to you!

    I wonder if Maxx and Rosy are settling down – and if so how long it took. My daughter’s dog is a year old and still extremely lively but then he is half Jack Russell.

    Cinque, I like your take on being hungry, and will remember in future to take it as a sign that good things are happening in the body.

    I hadn’t heard of brining chicken breasts. I have often made, for a nephew who loves it, Nigella’s version of chicken nuggets, where you soak the chopped up chicken in yoghurt and honey, and I know that makes it very tender and delicious. I look forward to trying the various chicken dishes you mention, Thin.

    I was impressed, Thin, to read of how strict and faithful you are with your FDs. If that was your worst FD in seven years then congratulations to you.

    Your day in Oxford sounded lovely. I was in Oxford for a work conference twenty odd years ago and remember wandering around the University Botanical Gardens in a jet-lagged state and loving them. Oxford is so beautiful with all those wonderful old colleges.

    Neil, snow – goodness! As you say, hard not to comfort eat when it’s cold and bleak. Good luck with it!

    The puppy is waking from a big sleep. Time for a play!

    Best wishes to all
    from Helen Kate

    Thin, your days spent in Oxford sound absolutely lovely. And your worry over a FD overeating might be a bit obsessive, but that’s what keeps you at your desired low weight. Better that than slipping into overeating.

    Cinque, I hope you’re surviving your granddaughter’s extended visit and that it proves to be the key to her becoming more accustomed to sleeping soundly at your place. It may be just what she needs to build her confidence.

    Helen Kate and Merry, it’s great to see you posting again. Helen, the new puppy sounds delightful. It’s been a while since we’ve had a puppy around here. They are so cute and energetic but seem to chew and destroy shoes that are left anywhere they can reach, not to mention anything else they can chew.
    Merry, I hope you hear from the penguins and that they are doing well. Good to hear that you are getting back on the horse and in the losing mode again.

    LJ, opening that packet of chocolate covered dried strawberries and then feeling obligated to finish it is an all too familiar scenario around here. Why is it that the indulgent treats must be finished but it easy to stop at one piece of the the packet of celery in the frig?

    Neil, are you going to take up knitting and knit that head to toe colorful bodysuit that Cinque posted the photo of a couple weeks ago? Once I saw that picture, it was hard to unsee it! Think of how memorable you would be! Cinque, you come up with the most entertaining ideas!

    Lindsay, you’re almost at your goal. Great work at sticking to your plan and being able to get into your small sizes of clothing again. Good to hear you’ve had many of you larger clothes altered as well. It’s worth it for nicer things that you don’t want to give up after losing all those kilos.

    I’m sorry to read about all the lockdowns lately in Australia. 20 or 30 new cases a day is indeed alarming there with such normally low rates. We very often have far more in a single city and consider it normal. You’ve done so well with contact tracing and holding the spread in the past. I hope the lockdowns keep the situation from becoming worse, especially with that new variant. Stay safe and get vaccinated. The vaccines have helped a lot here, even though some people are so resistant to getting them. You can see by the numbers in countries around the world who have many vaccinated people, that the numbers come down. I hope the supply numbers increase now with the threat of the many small outbreaks. And I’m happy to read that most of our group here has received at least one jab.

    Very high temperatures around here lately in the high 30’s. And due to the lack of rain the past couple years everything is so dry. We had several small fires that weren’t very far from here over the weekend. Luckily our fire fighters brought in both air and ground support and brought them under control quickly. There are so many canyons and small roads in the Sierra foothills that it’s difficult to get to fires some of the time other than by dropping retardants by air. We live in a regular neighborhood, but it’s still semi rural with lots of trees. It should cool down some after tomorrow.

    Hello to everyone I didn’t mention. I am reading all of your posts even when I’m not posting. Please send us some cool weather and rain! Gray skies would be welcome here after the last couple of weeks.

    CalifD, good to hear from you – we do have that movie Sweet Tooth on NF but it’s a sci-fi thingy so I’m not keen. Did you like it? Oh no, fire season again. I echo your thoughts on Aus and the virus/vaccine and hope it all works out soon.

    HelenKate, I haven’t ever blown a FD before and I do adhere to them rigidly – but don’t worry, I’m no saint, NFDs remain a work in progress seven years on! LJ can relate I think. Enjoy the puppy time.

    Neil, I hope the weather improves for you. Glad you’re still in touch with our other kiwi friend and might go for a good ride soon. Last night, three men (all almost 70) were camped near our boat. They’re rowing 140 miles to London on The Thames in nine days. They do long-distance cycling but this was their first time rowing.

    Cinque, your sister might be interested to know that I captured a mink on my camera trap this morning. I’d already seen it about three times before breakfast but was too slow with my other camera. I set up the trap and it captured it coming it out of the river. I have a lot to learn – the default setting was for 30 second intervals. I’ve changed that now because I’m sure I’d have got a better image in the moments after it emerged but, of course, after 30 seconds it was gone again. Likewise, we saw two kingfishers and a shrew yesterday morning – long gone before I could have reached for my DSLR camera. But maybe the trap will do the work for me. I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before.

    Morning all. Well I got through our coldest night of the year pretty much unscathed. I had slightly more than 800 calories, around 1000, but then I got a gym session in for 45 minutes so it balanced out. I had veg with hummus again for lunch, and then I made a large sausage roll for dinner and had it with some glazed beetroot and parsnips and 2 squares of dark chocolate for dessert. I made some roast carrot, ginger and caraway soup for lunch today and we’re planning on having some dhal and rice for dinner. If I can just get through 3-4 days on the reduced calories and no sugar or starchy/processes carbs then hopefully that will be enough to get me back into the good eating habits.

    Thin, that’s awesome. I hope I’m still as active when I hit my 70s. I saw news stories saying that Harrison Ford is in the UK at the moment filming the latest Indiana Jones movie and he’s a keen cyclist. At 78 he’s still doing up to 40 miles a day on his bike to unwind after filming.

    Cali, I am not going to knit that! Although it might make riding a bit warmer at this time of year 😉

    Helen Kate, looking after a puppy is the best situation. You get to play with a cute puppy without having to put up the the hassle of having to train them, walk them every day, etc. Have fun!

    Well, have a great day everyone.

    Morning all. First full day of lockdown, and it feels pretty much like every other day over here. Coffee and screen time, walk the dog, coffee, lunch, beach time with the dog, brush and feed her, cook dinner, watch television. A bit worried for next week though – we were having the girls because DD and SIL are working (and will continue to do so – both in essential industries) so if the lockdown is extended, we can’t go back and they can’t come here. Same problems pretty much everyone else is contending with, and like everyone else, they’ll manage. But frustrating for us that at a time when they need our help, we may no be able to.

    On a sunnier note ….Helen Kate, your puppy sounds so lovely. And excellent, too, you get such a special time with him. You asked about Rosy. Yes Cinque, you are right. She’s calming down such a lot. When she takes things now, it’s for the attention or the game, not the destruction. Beach time with her is perfect. We walk the length of the beach (a 40 minute walk if we don’t stop to chat) but I think she would cover the distance at least 4 times. She just runs, chases birds, comes back to us, runs some more. I love that people on the beach know her by name, and watch her, often with a smile on their faces. She is really something, at full stretch chasing a seagull. So strong and joyful. Oh my don’t I go on about my dog. At night, she climbs up on the window seat and goes to sleep …and that’s where she is right now. Being companionable.

    Thin, I think your advice about just accepting where our bodies have settled, if good, particularly for my friend, who has lost 35 kilos and seems to have really gone as low as she can, for the while. I feel I could probably lose another 5 below my goal weight, but I am conscious that my skin isn’t as young as it was, and I may end up very slim but too wrinkled. So my current goal is a good level for fitness, bmi and wearability of clothes, and I really want to lose these final 2 kilos. I’ll get there – eventually.

    Thin, I think the extremes you mentioned are common. My kids and their mates are all lean – DS runs half marathons, DD swims and walks, and they are very mindful about the children’s food. But at our local shopping centre, the picture is quite different. I walk through the food court to get to the library, and it is a real eye-opener. Plates piled high with fried food from the Chinese buffet, kids in trolleys with fries and soft drink. It is really sad. I don’t know what the answer is.

    Neil, you sound like you have put yourself back in the zone well and truly. And well done for doing it during a cold snap! As you say, it can take a few days, but nothing like seeing those scales go down, and not having the hungries.
    Have you seen Jony? He seems to have disappeared off the forum.

    re fit 70 year olds ….I try to get a handler for Rosy at shows …I am edgy about running, after the herniated disc. But the woman who often takes her is 74, and it is a pleasure to watch her and Rosy, running in sync.

    Cali, thanks for the good wishes about Australia’s Covid lockdowns. We’ll get there ….if only we could get the vaccination rollout up and running. A bit of resistance to the AZ vaccine, mixed messages about its risks, and a shortage of Pfizer has put us behind the eight-ball. The government is now, finally, talking about dedicated quarantine facilities, with hotel quarantine demonstrably flawed.

    HK let me know if you need me to post the mushroom soup recipe from the Fast800 cookbook. It’s a great, filling, recipe.

    Cinque, I took your advice, and guess what? down .2. Who ever knew? How did day one of the sleepover go?

    OK, the sun is out so I’ll walk my mutt. Have a great, safe day all.

    Hi Lindsay, John seems to be pretty busy with the riding group. There have been some awesome rides that I’m sad I missed out on, you can have a look through their jaunts on the group’s facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AOK-Rides-1603926736511531

    Hello all

    I am looking after Paddy the lagotto puppy again today. I aim not sure if it makes the FD easier or harder – maybe easier because it takes my mind off being hungry. I have my Zoom Italian conversation class this afternoon and hope that it will coincide with one of his big sleeps. But if it doesn’t he will no doubt provide us with a topic for conversation.

    Neil, you are exactly right about the joys of being a puppy minder, without the owner’s big and ever-present responsibilities. Some time in the future I may well have him here for extended stays as my sister and her partner will be wanting to go to London to visit son and grandchildren, but that day still seems a good way off.

    Your FD food sounds delicious – glazed beetroot and parsnips – yum.

    It is good to hear of people in or around their seventies doing such energetic cycling and rowing – and dog handling!

    Thin, I like the idea of being rigid about FDs but not having to be that way for the other days of the week, so that one can be generally ‘good’ but allow some indulgences too. In my small reading-aloud-the-classics group, where we are currently working our way through the Aeneid, we always have champagne and wine and interesting cheese, and end the night with gluten-free cake, and I love those evenings!

    Cinque, I was exhausted last night after my first day of dog care, so can only imagine how you are after a stretch of grand-daughter care, especially with the overnight stay. How did it go?

    Calif, your comment about how the treats demand to be finished but the celery sits in the fridge hardly touched made me laugh – I have some celery in the fridge right now! If that were a packet of salted peanuts it would not last for thirty minutes!

    It’s scary to read of the dryness and high temperatures in your part of the world. Thank goodness those small fires we quickly brought under control.

    Lindsay, I hope the lockdown over there ends and you are able to help out with the grandchildren. These are nervous and unpredictable times. Rosy sounds marvellous, and I well understand the pleasure it gives people to see her having such a wonderful time on the beach. I think you told me what kind of dog Rosy is but I can’t remember so please could you tell me again, so I can picture her. I am imagining some kind of setter. And I would also really appreciate you posting that mushroom soup recipe. Thanks!

    Best wishes to all
    Helen Kate

    Hello all

    Well EOFY has been extremely challenging and I’m afraid I fell off the horse and became quite behind in my mini goals. So to save putting pressure on myself I reset them yesterday and have had two very good days.

    Helen Kate, your sister’s puppy sounds adorable. Maxx has settled down a bit but remains naughty and sweet in equal amounts. Just as Lindsay said – he no longer chews shoes/clothing/linen/walls/tv remotes to be destructive but when he wants attention he sure does know how to get it! He loves to nick a tea-towel or something and race around the house with it like a 40+ kilo prancing horse with tail up and head shaking around. Right now he has his big head poking under my armpit looking for some play time. Too cute

    Cinque, you mentioned the word ‘sedate’ and ‘Maxx’ in the same sentence. That is true when he is asleep! Out and about he is ok so long as no-one pays him any attention. This morning a council worker came and made a fuss and almost ended with Maxx with his paws on his shoulders. He just can’t help getting super excited to potentially make a new friend. That is fine for a tiny dog who makes it your knees if he/she ‘jumps up’ but a 40+ kilo small horse – well not so good. Glad you had a fantastic FD on Monday and good luck with your granddaughter sleepovers.

    Your trip with DD to Oxford sounds amazing Thin and I echo HK – if that was your worst ever FD then WOW. But we all know and admire your FD strength and get motivation from it.

    Good luck with 2 weeks of fast 800 Neil. You can smash it, for sure. I actually shivered when you were describing the weather. Thanks for the link to Jony’s FB page

    Oh no, bushfire danger again Cali. High 30’s is hot and lack of rain so very dangerous. You can have some of our cool weather – I am already completely over Winter

    LJ – well the chocolate strawberries are gone now and good riddance. I did something similar on the weekend with cheese flavoured rice crackers. I bought some (WHY?????) and opened them and allocated only 5 per day. Well I finished the entire packet in one day. I have had a bar of chocolate in the fridge for about 3 weeks and can easily have one square and leave it. But salty/savoury/crunchy……no self-control whatsoever. Sigh. Lesson learnt, today I marched past the biscuit aisle with great determination

    We went out for Mr Anzac’s birthday (belated) on Saturday and went to our favourite dog-friendly café. It was lovely and sunny and 19 degrees and we had a great time. So did Maxx. A friend texted that the Premier had announced a surprise press conference so I knew straight away we were going into lockdown. Here is a picture of poor, starving Maxx looking forlornly at some prawns. He had his own lunch but of course wanted ours as well.


    And another with his chicken Kong


    Take care all

    Good afternoon all.

    Anzac, lovely pics of Maxx. It sounds like Maxx is of the view that a stranger is just friend he hasn’t introduced himself to yet.
    Not surprising that work stress had an impact on your diet plan, there is only so much pressure our brain can take before demanding compensation.
    I’m an equal opportunity snacker. On a bad day, both the bar of chocolate and the bag of chips would be at risk from me. I only buy plain brown rice crackers and I never risk having potato chips in the pantry. Oddly I can have a block of dark chocolate in the fridge as I’d never want to eat the whole thing – milk chocolate on the other hand..
    I have the opposite reaction to cold weather – I dread the imminent arrival of the heat.

    Neil, that’s an excellent attitude to getting back into Fast800 for a little while.

    Cinque, no post today? I hope that doesn’t mean the grand daughter sleep over has been very difficult. Hopefully after three days there will be a good sleep pattern for both of you.

    Cali, lovely to see you back on the forum. Very pleased to hear that any fires have so far been easily controlled – I hope that continues.

    HK, I had to look up lagotto as it was a breed I’d not heard of – very cute. Google tells me it literally means “lake dog” as they were bred as water retrievers. I don’t speak a word of Italian so I’ll have to take their word for it. Hopefully by the time your sister heads overseas and you do extended dog sitting, Paddy will be house trained.

    Lindsay, I noticed something similar with a sustainable weight and the impact of age. In my 20s I lost 50kg and got down to the mid-60s and couldn’t seem to get any lower. When I did the same thing a few years ago I found my body settled in the mid-70s and wouldn’t go lower. I also have a lot more saggy skin than I did after weight loss in my 20s – it just doesn’t shrink back like it did then.

    Thin, I know you don’t care for sci-fi, but I have found the British series Black Mirror (which has recently begun on free-to-air here) very good – more dystopian than sci-fi. The first episode I saw was about the intersection between species extinctions, AI and hate speech on social media. It reminds me a little of the 1980s series The Twilight Zone.

    As Thin has alluded to, my FDs continue to be very good, but NFDs are a mixed bag. Some days I’m very happy that my NFDs are GFDs, other days they are train wreck!
    As to FDs, I have learned that while it it best to keep to a planned FD regardless, there is an exception. If I have a sleepless night with a FD planned for the next day I’m best to postpone it by a day. This is because lack of sleep makes me nauseous and the only thing that settle it is food. My usual approach to FDs of drinking copious cups of tea actually makes it worse. If I have to keep my FD on that day then I have to opt for an 800cal FD as it allows me the small snacks earlier in the day than I’m normally have.

    Hello to everyone else, hope you are well.

    Take care all.
    Hope everyone is coping with whatever restrictions their state is facing.

    Good afternoon everyone. Hope you’re coping okay with lockdowns in various Australian states. Eased lockdown in Victoria has been nice, still a ways to go. How strange to have all the AFL teams based back in Victoria for this weekend, at least. Guess they’re doing all they can to keep the season running.

    I guess HelenKate and LJoyce are still enjoying relative freedom in SA, and Cinque and I are, here in Victoria, too. Hope the lockdown in QLD doesn’t go on too long, LindsayL. It would make it difficult for your DD and SIL, with no available babysitters. Praying for the various outbreaks to be controlled with relative ease.

    Cinque, hope you’re managing with your granddaughter there. You warned that no news would not be good news, so we’re holding our breaths. Glad the op shop shopping was fun and distracting.

    LJoyce, concur with you re opening a delish packet of whatever, and being unable to not finish it in one sitting. I’m like you – sweet or savory, same problem.

    LindsayL, interesting comment re the sky in Beijing. It wasn’t too bad when I was in China (1995-2006), but since then….. oh dear. I visited Tianjin (150 km SE from Beijing) in 2014, and the skies had this gray haze all the time. I then took the train to Qingdao, on the east coast, a 4 hour train trip, and the skies only started to become a bit blue after two hours of travel. Very sad. I remember when living in in Tianjin, in winter, it might be -5 degrees outside in winter, but there would be sunshine and blue skies. And even Beijing wasn’t too bad, except for when a duststorm blew in from the Gobi desert. Now? So different!

    Thin, great you could meet up with your daughter in Oxford. The problem here has been “we haven’t got covid problems like other countries, we’ll get the vaccine sometime, whenever, she’ll be right”. Now there’s finally more urgency, and the states are fighting with the Commonwealth over supply, and health advice. Come on everyone, we’re all in this together! I’m glad that I’m getting my second vaccine dose tomorrow.

    CalifDreamer, hope you’re coping with the heat over there. Are you in the north of the state? There seems to be a real heatwave on, stretching up into Canada, where no-one is used to it. Are you in an area where there is plenty of air-conditioning? Stay cool.

    My weight? Well, it’s been fluctuating within the 84-85 kg bracket for the past 2-3 months. Now my hand is back to normal, and a couple of other problems dealt with, I am back on the 5:2 wagon from today. July 1st seems an “auspicious” date to re-commence serious weight loss. Mind you, it won’t be a FD today, as I’ll be out to dinner with friends this evening, but the attitude change had to come first.

    Onward and downwards!!! I’ll try to post a bit more regularly from now. The mutual support is so helpful.

    Evening all.

    HelenKate, a Lagotto Romagnolo is a wonderful dog …another gundog, so may take a little while to settle (like Maxx and Rosy), but ultimately worth it for their sheer joy. And they are quieter than the setters and the labs and retrievers. I know them only because they follow us into the ring in dog shows (after the Irish water spaniels and Labs) What colour is he? Here’s a pic of our Rose – I’m not the best photographer, but she did stay still for a moment.

    I spoke too soon when I said she was calming down – on our way to the beach yesterday she was beside herself with excitement….so chewed on my seat belt. It shredded a little before I realised what she was doing, so I guess it will need replacing.

    I lost another .3 today …yea! I am sure it is all the extra walking we are doing over here on the island. A good walk in the morning, then an hour at the off-leash beach. I am constantly hungry, and eating more than usual, but I have upped my calories to 1500 daily, and just one FD, as I try to move back to a more normal way of life. It may be once I reach my target (1.7 kilos to go) I need the two fast days ….time will tell. My daily calorie limit is around the 1800 mark, if I factor in light exercise, but I doubt I’ll eat up to that on a daily basis. And most days, my exercise comes into the moderate category, but I won’t add extra calories.

    Anzac, lovely photos of Maxx. Doesn’t it make a difference, being able to go out to restaurants etc, and know they’ll behave well. I had some early anxiety when we took Rosy out, but it was one of the few things she was pretty good at.

    LJ not good news about skin being less resilient as we lose weight at an older age. My friend is more affected than I am, having lost 35 kilos, but we were both surprised by it. Ever the optimist, I’m hoping I’ll get some tightening up, with exercise and time.

    Cinque, no message from you today – hope all is going well.

    HK, I’ll have to wait til I get back home to post the mushroom recipe.

    Betsy, when we were in Qingdao, we opened the blinds one morning to see mist right up hard to the windows. We shut them again, and settled in to binge-watch The West Wing. When we opened up some hours later, the sky was brilliant blue, and there were dozens of brides with their hired white dresses hitched up around their thighs as they looked for shellfish in the rock pools, while waiting their turn to have their photos taken. It’s a scene I won’t forget (BTW, my job was at LangFang, halfway between Tianjin and Beijing. We had an apartment in Beijing so split our weeks …staying in LangFang Monday to Friday, then into Beijing on Friday afternoons, and back out Monday mornings. I loved my time there. but oh, those sandstorms!

    Have a good evening all, and hope for good news tomorrow on numbers and lockdowns.

    Woohoo I survived!
    And after s shocker first night, my darling granddaughter slept right through the next two nights.
    I’m exhausted though and did great damage to my personal good eating guidelines.
    But guess what, this morning I am minding granddaughter 4yo (she needs a turn).
    Due any minute.
    So I will write properly sometime in the future….

    That must be the first day ever that there were no posts here.

    Cinque, glad your GD has settled into a good sleep pattern. Sorry you’re exhausted though.

    Betsy, good that you’re in a new frame of mind.

    Anzac, LJ and Lindsay, Neil, hello to you.

    Hello Thin! (and all others).

    Cinque, I am sorry you are exhausted, but such good news your little one slept through two whole nights. Such a breakthrough, and wonderful for your GD, your DD and you.

    We are out of lockdown, so our grand-daughters can come over to the island tomorrow. I’m out of food and eating too much bread as a consequence, so thinking my weigh-in will not be great tomorrow. We were scheduled to go home this morning (for a dog-show), then I was going to restock in the morning before picking up the girls and coming back. But, not to be. I also need my stick blender for my soups (the blades jammed on the ones I had here, and although I could get it going by manually turning them a few times, it was pretty much inevitable that one day I’d forget the power was on, and whizz…no fingers!

    It has been cold and wet today – OH took Rosy for a run in the off-lead park on the other side ….just as I released her from her car restraint, she spotted kangaroos, and she was off. They scattered, but I live in fear one day she’ll corner one, with dire consequences. But not today.

    Great, Betsy, you’ll have had your second dose of vaccine now. I despair at the people I talk to over here. One chap we see on our morning walk (who lives by the water, and works weekends in the local restaurant) told us he had all the fresh air so didn’t need it, and the neighbours (he’s in his sixties, working, diabetic, lots of health problems, she’s in her late 50s) just haven’t got around to it. Yikes! As you say Betsy, this isn’t just about us as individuals….we have a community responsibility, but some people just don’t get it. (Oh shoot me now …I’m off on another rant).

    Calif, the temps look horrendous in some parts of the states. Are you okay?

    Neil, loved the FB/photos of John’s riding group. I got quite excited with the one in the cafe in Port Chalmers. We were there last year, at that very table, talking to a group of cyclists. I wonder if it was anyone now in Jony’s group?

    OK off to start the evening. Enjoy the rest of your weekend, all.

    Good morning,
    Cold here, but I am snug.
    I have my fingers crossed for those NSW numbers today.

    I’m going to work through a lovely lot of posts. I am still in recovery mode, so I might be slow and all over the place, but feeling so lovely to be catching up with all of you.

    Thin, hoping fast day today is all lovely and easy and not stressful like last Sunday. Glad to know you aced it anyway, scales wise.

    Australians are not all managing limbo without frustration. But apparently the government are planning a plan, so that’s something. A four stage plan. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qNjFIwRYEIo

    What a great time with DD, and very cool to be narrowboating along the Thames.

    I wonder how common that last kilo or two being so hard to shift is. It does make sense to just go ‘hmm my body just doesn’t like round numbers’ and give it time to settle before finally getting rid of them.

    Ooh looking forward to hearing about the wildlife camera action.

    Neil, brr. I hope that Antarctic blast is well past.
    I hope your two weeks on 800 cal is going well. But if that cold weather continued, it would have made it very hard.

    I only needed one night of shocking sleep and a six year old with food difficulties and my carefully crafted eating pattern was out the window. I made her home made pizza and my mixed grain waffle/crispbreads and then ate too much and immediately was continuously hungry. I think I had three or even four days when I ate something like double my usual calories… so that will take weeks of fasts and sensible eating to address. Sigh.

    I am glad to say I was back on track yesterday and fasty fasting today.
    But it was enlightening to see how quickly calories go up with some carb heavy foods and no three or four hour breaks between eating.

    Off to make a cup of tea…


    Helen Kate, lovely puppy days. Welcome Paddy!
    I had to check out Lagotto dogs too, and google told me water dog, but ofcourse lagatto is lake. (I started learning Italian around the time I chose Cinque for my user name, but I didn’t get far.)
    I can imagine it takes a bit of work to make your home pup friendly. But what fun, and a great fast day distraction.
    Haha yes, you can imagine my exhaustion, although Paddy doesn’t sit at the computer every now and then to play ‘Busy Things’.

    Ooh Nigella’s recipe for chicken nuggets sounds a good one to try for my granddaughters (her recipe for oven baked chicken drumsticks was the mainstay when I used to mind my young friend Harper years ago. Delicious.) (Harper had just got his drivers license… What!!!)

    Cali, I have been thinking of you so much with the news of that dreadful heatwave in your part of the world. And poor Canada, and poor Arctic circle.
    But you are the person I know who has been dealing with it, and worried for the fire season also.

    How are you going with 5:2 these days? And how are your pets?

    You are right that the extended sleepover built my graddaughter’s confidence, and so I am going to mind her one night this week so we can keep what we have gained.
    It was hard, but worth it.

    Oh dear we are the bottom of the list of vaccinated OECD countries at the moment as we didn’t buy the numbers of vaccines we needed to vaccinate everyone quickly and efficiently. And then there have been some confusing messages too.
    Three weeks until I get my second one.
    The news has just come through that three aged care residents have covid, but I think they are fully vaccinated, such a relief.

    Thin, I thought I had read your next email but my brain has even less concentration than I thought. So I have just read the mink news! So cool to catch it coming out of the water.
    I was so excited to hear you had wild mink in the UK (never mentioned in Enid Blyton adventures, or Wind in the Willow). Oh dear, sorry to learn it is an invasive introduced species. But still an amazing animal living out its life as best it can in the environment it finds itself. I will tell my sister (and she will immediately look it up too, it is a family trait).
    The shrew and kingfishers are so cool too, I hope the camera trap works for them.

    Nearly lost the last one! Had to log in again, and luckily clicked back a couple of pages and found my writing page still there.

    Neil well done and celebrations for such good work. The price of good health is eternal vigilance.

    But now I want a home made sausage roll with glazed veggies.

    Maybe you would like to knit your bike instead? https://knithacker.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/noid-image.jpg

    Lindsay, so glad to read about your lockdown day knowing you have opened up again already.

    My sister is on longservice leave (she is the vicar one). She got out of Victoria just before we had cases (and hadn’t been near any hot spots) got to Queensland for a week and then came back to Canberra through Sydney just as there was a scare there, but before Queensland started having cases. She managed to get over to Adelaide going through Sydney airport just missing the infected man flying to Melbourne. Then went up to Coober Pedy and left there the day before the idiots arrived in their private plane.
    She got to Katherine just as Darwin started talking about lockdown so organised going to Alice instead. Then the Alice locked down with enough notice she could stay in Katherine. She headed off to Darwin and arrived two hours after the lockdown there ended.

    Ooh isn’t Rosy beautiful.

    Haha saying you took my advice, did you fart in their general direction? But yay another .2 gone.

    Oh good to hear news Jony is so happily busy and what a great fb page. I hope you get a ride, Neil.

    Anzac, my granddaughter is very scared of dogs (and cats, that made poor Miso have to be outside or in a different part of the house) but she loved the pictures of Maxx. She said he has sweet eyes. (I didn’t manage to show her the picture of Rosy).
    My 4yo granddaughter wasn’t scared of dogs until one jumped up on her, so just as well Maxx is 900km away from them both. (I know you would keep Maxx on a lead, but damage done!)

    Happy belated birthday to Mr Anzac.

    Ok I have had enough tea, I’m getting coffee to finish off my catch up.



    Anzac, my sympathy re the EOFY work, it was hard enough when I ran a teeny little organisation, I can’t imagine all you need to do.
    And sympathy too, so hard to fall off the horse (like I did too). Let’s brush ourselves off and climb back up with a good hold of those reins.
    Sensible idea to reset.

    LJoyce, Ha yes, quite nice to be rugging up against the cold instead of wilting in the heat.

    My face did go saggy when I lost that weight, but our skin keeps doing the best it can, and that healthy diet full of fruit and veg gives it the best chance, hooray.

    Betsy so good to hear from you.
    Woot! Fully vaccinated! (I have 16 days before my next one)(I checked)
    Good news you have kept your weight fairly stable and even better news that your hand and those other things life throws at us are resolved and you can have a great July of 5:2. All power to you! I really hope you are acing it. You will feel so good.

    Yes! Do post more regularly! We love hearing from you.

    Merry, hanging out to hear from you too.

    Okay, coffee went down much more quickly than I intended, be more mindful Cinque!

    Time to do some pottering around. All those things on the kitchen sink that need handwashing!

    Embrace feeling hungry!

    Cheers all.

    Cinque, wow, we are well and truly caught up with you. Great posts and the one thing that comes to mind is your vicar sister dodging covid all over the continent! If I believed in a god, I’d be tempted to say that he or she must have been with her on that trip.

    Yesterday, I was culling dozens of emails in a ‘5:2’ folder where I’d been meeting Perth losers and chatting privately to people on this forum. I came across ‘before and after’ photos of you. What a difference. One of your sisters is in the background with her husband.

    Yes thanks, all set for a fasty FD. Fresh ingredients so I won’t stuff up this one. I’ll try to remember that feeling hungry is a good thing.

    I finished the initial planting of the front garden today and feel suitably exhausted – I still have to source and plant dwarf nandinas for the border and figure out how to instal a watering system.
    Cinque, wonderful that you had a sleeping breakthrough with your GD. I was inspired by your efforts and decided to offer a sleepover to my nephew’s kids tomorrow night – I had already agreed to babysit all day Tuesday. I’ve never had them overnight so this will be a learning curve.

    I finally managed a proper GFD with lots of veg & fruit and modest portions.

    I am tired, sore and in need of bed. Will return later in the week.

    Take care all.

    Hello all

    Cinque, wonderful to see you swing back into action after being understandably de-railed by your mighty grandchildren work. ‘Embrace the hunger’ was just what I needed to hear at the beginning of this FD.

    Betsy, good that you’ve had the second vaccination. Within two weeks I’ll have had mine, and that will be a good feeling.

    Lindsay, your Rose is a beautiful dog. She must look amazing when she is stretched out running with that beautiful fur blown back. It was good to read your words about lagottos. I read them out to my sister. Of course we are all in love with Paddy and can hardly imagine a time before he was with us. I will try and send a picture but am not sure yet how to do this.

    Lindsay, I have wondered how your OH’s feet were going. I remember you mentioning that he had plantar fasciitis among other things and I know from experience how painful and incapacitating that can be. I hope things have improved a lot.

    Anzac, gorgeous pictures of your Maxx, looking so wistfully at those prawns, and busy with his kong. He looks like a darling. Love the thought of him prancing round the house with a captured tea towel!

    Anzac, I am the same as you with savoury/salty/crunchy, and like you I can easily leave sweet things and chocolate alone. My cousin, who has a sweet tooth, comes for dinner here once a week and leaves Haigh’s chocolates here with me, knowing they will be safe and will last us for weeks as an after-dinner treat, whereas with her they would be gone in a night. LJoyce, I laughed at the thought of you being an equal opportunity snacker!

    My FD is nearly at an end. Evenings are a danger time for me but I have left some calories ‘in the bank’ so I can have something small to eat with a cup of tea. It is very good to have the warm company of this group. It really makes a difference.

    I enjoy reading all the messages even if I don’t manage to respond to all the news.

    Warm wishes to all
    Helen Kate

    Hi everyone,
    I have been away looking after grandchildren in school holidays, and will get back to posting regularly shortly.

    There is sad news. Our dear friend penguin has passed away from cancer in April. Mrs P has moved again to be closer to her grandchildren and children. I’m in tears and I will miss them both.


    Morning all

    Well so much for healthy eating. My wife had an appointment with her specialist on Friday and got some bad news. She went in for an MRI to check up on her health issues, and while they were doing that, unexpectedly they came across a walnut sized brain tumour. It’s benign and operable, but on top of the stress of the rest of her health issues it was just the icing on the cake. Neither of us really felt like doing anything or watching what we were eating and we both went on a bit of a bender over the weekend. It really seems to be one thing after another at the moment with her health and we’re wondering what she did in a past life to deserve it.

    I’ll try to get my eating in check this week, but it’s going to be difficult with the head space I’m in.

    Sorry for the downer post to start the week.

    Good morning dear friends,

    Today is a morning for heart breaking news here.

    Vale Penguin.
    Weren’t we lucky to know him, and to see what a rich, wonderful life he led.
    My memories are immediately of him in his garden shed, or in the frosty garden listening to birds. But I also think grandchildren, painting, travel.

    Neil, you have permission to eat the house.
    A brain tumour of any type is such a terrible scare.
    But I am so, so glad it is benign and operable, and hooray for the brilliant surgeons and technology they have these days, to make the operation as safe as possible.
    How cruel to have this news on top of Mrs Neil’s other complex health issues. Life can be so unbearably hard at times.

    Sending so many good wishes to you. It is such a terrible thing for a family to go through, but a strong loving family will do it better than anyone, and I am so glad that you all have each other.

    You will get to the point when it is time to work hard to be healthy for the long haul, but you need the time to deal with shock and stress.

    I feel very far away, and I wouldn’t be able to do much to help, even if I was close, but you do have all my good wishes.

    I missed Merry’s post about Penguin. That is really sad news. I was getting worried when he hadn’t checked in for a long time. Even though he wasn’t posting regularly like he was, he always used to stop in now and then for a check in. My thoughts go out to his family.

    Well it is a hard start to the day.

    I am sure we have all been concerned for Penguin, and it is very sad to have fears confirmed, and know he has passed. Thank you Merry for making contact and letting us know. If you are in contact with Mrs P, please share our thoughts, and what Cinque said – he added such colour and life to our little forum.

    Neil, what a shock for you and your wife to have this news. Best thoughts are with you both, and your boys, as you work through this. If there is any ‘good’ news from this, it’s that it seems the tumour was found early, in an incidental finding. And again, as Cinque says, a strong family is so important and you will all help each other.

    No heart for other posts yet – best wishes to all of you. Stay safe and strong.

    This is not a day for good news here on our forum. Merry, I am so sorry to hear that our penguin has passed. We are lucky to have so many good memories of him and to have had him as a dear friend for as long as we did. Please pass on our condolences to Mrs. Penguin and his family. https://www.italflorist.com/flower/image/we-fondly-remember-funeral-arrangement.jpg

    Neil, I am so sorry to hear about Mrs. Neil’s MRI results. Your family is going through a lot right now and it’s no wonder you’re both doing some stress eating. Food does have a calming effect and you both know how to get it back under control when these health issues are resolved. I wish there was something I could do to make things better. But know that I’m sending positive thoughts and prayers from California. https://77f90f009124773797b9-5620af73f17ec7d8bbaefba0c79a0c2e.ssl.cf2.rackcdn.com/T01J400A-Bee-Well-Bouquet.jpeg

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