Weight Loss Week 15. The WEAK Before Christmas

Deck the Walls of My Flabby Belly

Fa la la la la. La la la la

With Cookie Batter and Fruity Jelly

Fa la la la la. La la la la

Don me now with Spanx and girdles

Fa la la. Fa la la. La la la!

Willpower fails Holiday hurdles

Fa la la la la. La la la la!!


Everybody sing with me!

 That’s right.  T’was the weak before Christmas in my overused kitchen.The Kitchenaid was stirrin’, while I stood around bitchin’!

I’m up a weight gain of two ounces under a pound!  I’m not that surprised because my willpower is in a really weird place right now.


Up about a pound.  Considering all the nuts I ate, it could have been worse!

I’ve been great at work—and considering the fact that every day brings more and more wonderful goodies from customers and clients, my will power for tasting whilst baking has gotten the better of me.


THIS came today.  I enjoyed the chocolate covered banana. That’s right. Singular. I had ONE!


THIS came yesterday and I treated myself to a half of a turkey sandwich and it was delicious.  A decent choice of lunch!


THESE also were delivered yesterday.  A Ghirardelli Tower and a Mrs. Fields Tower. I am happy to report that I did not eat anything from either tower.  If this were last year I would have eaten both towers and left nothing for anyone else! See where I’m going here?


Here’s a better treat that showed up at the office!  My boss’s daughter, who is a co-worker, had her cute dog at work and she fell asleep on my desk! Is this not adorable? Chippy would be jealous!

I made some a lot of Ina Garten’s Salted Caramel Nuts.  I also ate a lot of nuts.  The weak part of me caved in.  The more forgiving part of me looked at the nuts as a healthy alternative to…to…an unhealthy alternative!  There is a very good chance that I ate enough nuts to make jars of various nut butters!


THIS is my weakness. Salted Caramel Nuts. I just could not help myself. I could have been much worse. I COULD have eaten the contents of this jar.  But I didn’t. BTW–I have six jars full of these nuts.  I’ll bring some into the office!

I  baked biscotti.  I’m not done with the biscotti bake either.  I tasted ate a ton of raw batter! And it was good!

But wait. There’s a story to this biscotti.  When we lived in New Jersey, on Navesink Drive, I received this cookbook. The New Professional Chef.


1127 pages of great recipes and information, I love this book!

 It’s a mutha of a book and has a great Biscotti recipe.  I’ve changed the recipe  to “Vanilla” rather than “Anise” and I’ve added chocolate chips, nuts and cranberries but kept the basic recipe.


As you can see from the stained and filthy page, this is another recipe I’ve made many times over the years!

This recipe is different from most biscotti recipes in that the biscotti is a bit more “cakey” and not as hard.  It has remained the favorite of my three kids.  I really should rename it “Navesink Drive Biscotti”.  Anyway, over the years, I’ve packed the book away with moves and recently rediscovered the book.  Oona, just last week asked me if I had the “original” bisotti recipe because she really missed having them.  She was thrilled when I told her that I did, in fact, have the recipe.  This is the recipe I’m using this year and when I baked them,  the kitchen smelled just like it did when I made these years ago.


I’ll bake a couple more batches of plain biscotti and then start working on the Buche de Noel.  OMG–those nuts. My willpower is in high form right now!

And so, does my weakness mean I’m losing this battle?  Nope!  It’s just putting me on an awareness trail.  Under normal circumstances, I would, by this time pre-Christmas, be eating candy. I would be sneaking some of those caramel nuts every day. I would be eating enough biscotti to warrant baking three entire new batches.

I also made salmon rillettes last night. This is a great little spread for crustini or a softer toast–the rillettes go well with cocktails and make a great amuse bouche! I used Eric Ripert’s very easy and tasty recipe:  Avec Eric Salmon Rillettes


Rillettes are also great to have when unexpected guests drop by (as if that would EVER happen to me!) 

And yeah, I gained a pound—but that is the first “setback” of sorts in 15 weeks.  I’m not depriving myself of enjoying appetizers and cocktails on Christmas Day. Nor am I going to sit at the dinner table and pick. No. I’m enjoying all the food that I lovingly cooked.


I found this photo of me from 1993 or 1994.  At the time, I thought I was fat. That’s so disgusting when I look back on it.  I was not fat. At all. But we grow up with these awful body images.  I think most of my weight was in my hair. OMG. I miss having all that hair. Oh well, now I have fake hair!! 

The only thing is—I just won’t overdo it!

So how is your week shaping up? I have a ton of stuff to do.  I still need to finish up shopping, which I think I’ll do on Monday evening after work. I’ll do the majority of food shopping on Sunday and start to do more prep work!  Why is it that in October it seems that the Holidays are so far away—and then you turn around only to find Christmas in next week??? Yikes!

The winter weather is steadily sidling in over here. It was so cold and windy today that my fake hair almost blew off my head.  I need to wear a hat!


No kidding. I froze my ass off this afternoon. We’re doing a project at work for Christmas and we are gifting less fortunate people with things they are asking for. I had to go to my car to get the microwave oven I’m gifting someone with. It was so windy my fake hair almost blew off of me!

Speaking of wearing….here’s a bit of what I wore this week!


OK. Last Friday was Jeans Day and I wore this. I liked it so much I wore the same outfit all weekend. What can I say?


Monday’s weather was crappy. So I dressed appropriately in a toasty sweater and heavy boots..


My holiday dressing was in good form on Tuesday.  I swear this is one of my favorite skirts.  


Wednesday’s outfit was fun. I wore suede ghillies and got a few compliments on the shoes. I wore my Saint bracelet because I was praying to St. Anthony all day to help me find my Bowdabra.  He answered my prayers in a different way. I think I moaned and groaned about my lost Bowdabra so much that Oona ordered the deluxe version for me on Amazon Prime. It’s being delivered tomorrow. I’ll be making bows for everyone!!  So thank you Oona and thank you St. Anthony for making sure I am getting a bigger and better Bowdabra! I also had a GREAT fake hair day yesterday!  It’s a Vivica Fox Brie wig that I plopped over my bio hair. What a blend!


I went with the “ye ye” girl look today.  Remember I said I would not wear this as a holiday outfit?  Yeah. I’m truthfully challenged!  This was a good choice on a frigid day. 

And….my rotation of Christmas music is always spinning in my car. Today I was listening to Alligator Stomp—a collection of Cajun Christmas Music! One of my favorite Louisiana groups is Beausoleil and their version of “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” is beautiful.

About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
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25 Responses to Weight Loss Week 15. The WEAK Before Christmas

  1. kewlm0m says:

    A weight gain of less than 1 lb., just coming back from a trip to Paris, then baking and preparing rillets!?! That’s a win, sista! You go, girl! Lookin’ gooood & enjoying the holidays! Moderation in all things – it’ll be Lent, before you know it, and you’ll catch up then! Love, love, looooovve your blog and your Insta!

  2. Juliet says:

    I think you are doing phenomenally well, our office is awash with food – I just tried a chocolate to be polite and happily it was awful (so I can easily ignore them). Still to get into the festive spirit (we have a bereavement anniversary to get through) we can start celebrating/being grateful once the daughter appears home from uni – although this year I am possibly going to find weight loss easier than usual – Madam (daughter) studies sports science and has a “project” (me) she has my height (too short), my weight (too much), a food diary for the week and how many steps I took over that period. Now she has told me she wants to run some psychological profiles on me over Christmas to write up for her course (informed consent? apparently not important as you basically sign yourself away to your babies once they are born so I gather) – I mean what the heck???! I shall still be baking shortbread and biscotti and some usual Kiwi suspects – afghans, yo-yo’s and maybe pavlova as a protest if nothing else

    You are looking gorgeous btw as always

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Juliet! LOL. Ohhhhhhh…Pavlova! I love it–but it is far too healthy a dessert for what I’m doing. If your daughter needs a psychological profile an anyone besides you…I’m here for you baby. I’m here!! Oh..and today was the ACME. Soft Pretzels. I can’t contain myself when it comes to the soft pretzels. I just cant….XOXOXOXO!!!

  3. hipchick66 says:

    You look great, love the outfits, and you’ll lose that teeny weight gain very quickly after the holidays…enjoy them now! I decided not to make any cookies this year, since Mom doesn’t want any. Instead, I bought some browned butter cookies at Acme. Big mistake! I’ve already eaten half the container!!! So I’m putting the rest in the freezer in small bags 🙂

    • Catherine says:

      Lori. I had to take nuts and put them in the freezer for that same reason. I was in Giant earlier tonight and the sugar cookies looked so good that I was ready to purchase them and pass them off as my own….How awful is that????? XOXOXOXO!!!

  4. Julie says:

    Oh Catherine…I get such a kick out of you! When you were suggesting the salmon rillettes were handy in case someone dropped by, I was thinking “not gonna happen to me” too….I moved to this city to be with my internet guy, and really, after 10 years I still don’t have any friends…but even worse, I work at an office with only 4 other people. All guys. So not making any gal pals at work! Anyway, we all thought we were overweight when we were younger…at that weight now, we would appear emaciated. I feel like over Christmas I’ll enjoy myself, and in January, as they say, I will be “back on track”. Have a wonderful Christmas, and if I lived nearby, I’d drop in and try the salmon rillettes!

    • Catherine says:

      Hahahahaha! Julie. I work in a small office and the people I work with are great–but they are all like 30 years plus younger than me!!!!! I laugh my ass off whenever I see all these “holiday” articles about “when unexpected guests stop by”…WTF??? That hasn’t happened in years!!! I feel a blog post spinning around in my head……….XOXOXOXO!!!

  5. Bridget says:

    First of all, GOOD FOR YOU! You are doing well, and enjoying Christmas is always worth it. I wouldn’t call anything you’ve done so overboard that you have sabotaged your previous efforts.

    OMG, we need to get together! I have no friends around here either. Sometime in the new year, let’s meet in the city for lunch or something. 🙂

    P.S. Tell Chippy that I think the office pup was cute, but I also still think he is a cutie. 😉

    • Catherine says:

      OMG> Bridget–that would be so awesome. ARE you in Center City? Or are you on the outskirts? Yeah. We definitely need to meet up. And the sooner the better.I LITERALLY HAVE NO FRIENDS IN THE PHILADELPHIA AREA. Hipchick, you and I need to have lunch.or meet at my house!!! XOXOXOXOXO!!!

  6. Donna Jackson says:

    Happy Holidays to you & yours! I love your blog and read every word.

  7. LA CONTESSA says:


  8. Rosemary Eychenne says:

    Hi Catherine, just to say, loved your Paris escaped. You were certainly in a lovely part of the city. And how fabulous to get to go to a première of a film made by someone in your own family. I mean, how chic is that, for heaven’s sake ?
    Also, you seem to be doing extremely well with your diet and, of course, you knew that Christmas temptations were just around the corner and you’ve taken that into account. A very sensible lady, I would say.
    And lastly, I’m with you on the kilt trip. Fancy one myself but haven’t seen any in the shops round here.
    No, one more thing. Did you finally throw away that awful bra you had ? I mean, come on Catherine, compared to your other lovely undies you bought in Paris. You can’t let the side down;).
    Bonne nuit xxxx

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Rosemary. I threw away quite a few bras. My titties deserve better!!! Oh the kilt. I’m so in love with plaid AND kilt skirts.. And I’m super happy that you enjoyed my Paris jaunt. We are all aware that my Parisian trips are a bit–off the norm. I don’t “Do” the city the way others do. I love to make Paris unintimiidating and approachable–and it is!!! Glad you had a good time with that!!!!! Bonne nuit back atcha!! XOXOXOXOX!!!

  9. Julia says:

    Looking good Girl! Thanks for the Paris review. You r inspiring me with your tenacious dieting. Beautiful pictur from 1993/4. Amazing hair! You make my day. You r a very hard worker!

  10. Catherine, I always enjoy your honesty and your humility! You make me laugh and that is a wonderful thing. Your biscotti’s sound so much more flavorful than the ones that contain anise….not a fan! Ha, ha. You look amazing and you are doing so well with losing weight. You are an inspiration to those of us who need to lose a few pounds. Keep it up!

    • Julia says:

      I agree with u wholeheartedly. An inspiration! She is our Muse! Happy Holidays😀

      • Catherine says:

        Awwww. Thanks! You know, Amy, I truly believe that being honest in all that you do is the best policy. I don’t like the smoke and mirrors. We need to be more real–and humble too!! Listen. This biscotti is the best. I’m not an anise fan at all and vanilla is very pleasing and delicious. Thank you so much!! XOXOXOXO!!!

  11. mareymercy says:

    Still about 80 degrees here, but when I wake up tomorrow morning it’s going to be in thirties so, welcome to Texas! I LOVE that yellow plaid skirt with the tights!

    • Catherine says:

      Cynthia. Is that skirt not the greatest? I’m so in love with it that I could make little baby kilts!! LOL!! IT’s freezing here in the Philly area right now. O.U.C.H.!!! XOXOXOXO!!!

  12. pollymacleod says:

    Well done resisting all those goodies, you are looking good. I love your yellow tartan skirt, I tried to get one but couldn’t find my size, now I’ve put too much weight on for it to be a good look! 🙁

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Polly. Yeah, well, I’m trying my best to not eat any of the goodies but the candied nuts are my weakness. I took some into the office today so I wouldn’t be tempted at home!! Thank you so much for the compliment!! XOXOXOXO!!!

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