Down either .4, .6 or 1 pound, depending on where my feet were on my touchy digital scale (and the last one, I exhaled. It made me laugh, how much of a pound it took away to blow out all the air in my lungs -- at least .4 on my scale. :) Realistically, I can't take credit for a whole pound.)
I think it's the filberts. I haven't been very careful with the Dr. Pepper, and had two candy bars in the last week, meaning I haven't been shying away from the very concentrated carbs, but not as many when I have nuts in the shell around. They provide something like a diversion. When I might go for a snack of something totally bad for me, like chips or White Cheddar Cheez-Its, I was instead cracking and eating the Ennis filberts I bought last month. At the snack impulse moment, substituting something a little more complex to eat that has a higher fat content (satisfying) but lower carb count, which is also slightly sweet and has high protein, for pure carbo junk, something good will happen. It's not a very fast way to lose, and my little sister gave me a momentary yank on the collar this week by sending me a photo of myself as a teenager -- I think I weighed about 118 pounds -- so I'm not sanguine. But I'm glad to literally nibble away at the issue instead of making a big fuss or feeling down about it. I think if I got down that low again, unfortunately, my neck would be all droopy and crepey, unlike the glowing young face in the photo, so I'm not aiming that low. But I think I could stand to hit 125 without looking like a saggy, baggy elephant. :)
Weather was fritzy this week. It snowed twice, once with some ambition of sticking, even though this is March and it never does in western Oregon at this time of year. I kept thinking of Dominosarah and all the news reports and films of the horrible blizzards, and wondering if the entire population of the state of Minnesota shouldn't just be given winter homes elsewhere (in warmer states) by the government, so nobody has to plow, and cope, and try to save people who are stranded. It looks totally miserable!
I've been watching YouTube videos by a guy out of Chicago named Baumgartner who does cleaning and restoration of important paintings. Wow, is he good. And he has all the stuff -- a perfect, airy studio with all the necessary equipment and big, flat table spaces, exactly the right kind of cleaning products and touch-up paints (archival and removable), and the knowledge, of course. I'm sure it doesn't harm his business that he puts up the videos, but even if they weren't great ads, they are just fun to watch! (There is a whole YouTube subset of people cleaning things, all very satisfying. I also enjoy those where someone is cleaning out a trashy, neglected back garden of a Victorian house in Britain, though they aren't always as well filmed. Baumgartner, or his video editor, has it down to an art.)
Anyway, I have a lot of paintings, including a couple that are really dirty and one that has a small tear but isn't dirty, and I had looked up "How to mend a tear in a painting," to see if it was possible to do at home. One video by a crafts store showed a lady using fabric glue and a huge canvas patch on the back, which just seemed likely to cause future trouble. Mr. Baumgartner dealt with a tear by shaving off some threads from the unused edge of the painting's canvas, putting an archival adhesive onto the tear from the back (melted beeswax can also be used, amazing in itself!) and then dropping each little thread crosswise to the tear one at a time with tweezers, like little bridges, and smoothing them in with the adhesive. It was eminently sensible, and very sensitive, and won't leave a bump that can be seen from the front. I obviously have no archival adhesive but do have beeswax, and might try that thread method on my painting with the tear. At least, it won't do any harm, since beeswax is removable with mineral spirits. (My son had suggested duct tape. This is why paintings ultimately have to go to restorationists.) I'd love to learn the specialty of art restoration, though part of the draw in Mr. Baumgartner's videos is the lovely, perfect studio, which I would never be able to replicate. :)
Have a great week!