I gave #Keto a Veto and Other Stupid Ramblings

Eight whole days…almost nine!

No bread. No pasta. No to a whole bunch of things actually.

Somehow, for the past eight days, I’ve managed quite easily to live with less than 50 carbs a day. I figured I’ve tried a lot of diets in my adult life post children and the only thing that ever worked was less calories. This was something I hadn’t tried yet so I figured what the heck?

In a world where I can step out of the shower and ten minutes later be standing in a pool of my own sweat in a 70 degree house, and just gaze into the creamy deliciousness of a gelati and gain five pounds…you get the picture, just cutting calories wasn’t cutting anymore.

menopause

I try to stay active but since my daughter and granddaughters moved out a year ago, I’ve gained thirty pounds. THIRTY POUNDS.

I still look pretty good and it’s not as if my 5’6″ frame can’t handle it but I’m feeling the effects of the weight more and more now. My knee hurts more, I get winded more easily and although I know this new waistline is par for the menopausal course, that doesn’t mean I have to live with it for the rest of my life.

Back to the Keto…

I was doing great. I wasn’t even craving carbs at all! Every day I could see them fading in my rear view mirror…that was until last night. As I headed up to bed, I felt woosy and light headed and yet noticed a headache coming all at once. I hurried into bed and fell asleep but not before experiencing a bit of heart palpitations that I’ll admit, scared me a bit.

Then this morning, it hit. There’s this thing they call the Keto flu. Basically, your body feels like you have the flu. I had a headache, body aches and all over lethargic feeling. I hurriedly Googled the side effects of Keto and bam, there it was.

According to the article I linked above, symptoms can last about a week or more. So now I need to ask myself if this is worth seeing through. I’m taking into account my age, menopause and the fear that I may be one of the unlucky folks who takes a lot longer to detox from carbohydrates. I’m not sure what to do yet but so far, in just eight days my body has already started going through a transition that I like aesthetically if not physiologically. I’ll wait and see and if this keeps up, I’m back to calorie counting. I’ll still keep my carbs low but not like I have been. I’m not trying to injure myself to lose that 30lbs.

Next rambling…so, if you haven’t read any of my Ancestry blogs, Here’s a link to one. I had such incredible success with my maternal grandfather’s side that I was spoiled for the real hard stuff. I also decided I want to dig deeper into the DNA history so I sent of a test to Geno 2.0. It’s a much more in depth test and will even give you your Neanderthal percentage if you have any. Since 99% of my DNA comes from Europe, I’m fairly certain I have some Neanderthal. Did you know it is pronounced Ne-an-der-tal? It is indeed.

So, with my maternal grandfather Russ’ pedigree being so major, and all the incredible ancestors I have on that side, it still hurts and shocks me that his kids and grandchildren etc. who know I exist, still want nothing to do with me. Every time I check my DNA matches, there’s my uncle Jack and my cousin Jackie who obviously want no parts of me. I mean, what’s not to love? I’m smart, kind, successful and not half bad looking…even with the extra 30lbs…but seriously. What makes people act like this?

I know my grandfather was this big famous band leader, musician and writer, and never legally acknowledged my mother…his love child…but that was 95 years ago! They’ve denied it all my life and now, even when presented with actual DNA evidence, they still reject any contact with me or my family. I could see if I was like Trailer Trash Tammy or something but we’re good, honest, decent, down to earth people. I definitely don’t want anything from them and neither does the rest of my family. I guess some people prefer living a comfortable lie than an inconvenient truth.

Their loss…but it still hurts and probably always will. 

Maybe someday I’ll write a book about it all…

I still want a cat.

My thirteen year old kitty passed back in March. I think I’m over the grieving process for him (gone too soon) because recently I’ve been obsessing over searching for a new best friend. He was so beautiful and sweet I’m afraid I’ll fall in love with some kitty and I’ll end up on that TV show My Cat From Hell. My husband isn’t ready yet. He keeps telling me no way but yes way. It’s going to happen. A house is not a home to me without a fur baby in it.

My Kitty

Well that’s about it for tonight. The evil Keto Flu is kicking my butt.

Nighty Night…zzzzz

Peg

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#Ancestry, #DNA and Wait What? I’m a #Descendant of WHO???

DNA is innocent. DNA has no objective, no motive, no choice and definitely no other reason to exist but to be our building blocks. Last year I found out about all of the building blocks that made me who I am…well, at least physically…as a human being.

First and foremost I’m a history buff. I mean, I write historical fiction and do a ridiculous amount of research so I figured, why not research myself? I knew there were some questions about my lineage (see this post) but due to my DNA test I now know certain aspects of my pedigree were 100% TRUE and I’m good with it. However, what I didn’t know was, was tracing my ancestry would be so much FUN!

Let’s start at the beginning shall we? Below is my DNA Story, aka where all of my DNA came from geographically. Scientifically speaking, I’m kind of a mutt.

With that being said, I wanted more.

I started a tree. Guess what I found out? It does not grow on its own. You have to build it and then, no sleep. All you want to do is keep finding people and not to give away my age here but remember those old Breck commercials?

This thing grows more like weeds than a tree!!!
It goes off in all different directions and then these leaves pop up everywhere and you dont know which one to click on first!
Phew!!! More and more leaves and more and more people and let me tell you one thing, before the pill and other birth control…people had a LOT and I mean a lot of kids. I somehow imagine these families as the first models for baseball teams.

I was exhausted. Its expensive and its terribly time consuming but no, I don’t expect them to compile all of this information for free and once I got the hang of it, it wasn’t so bad. The problem is as a writer, I am constantly trying not to be distracted. Believe me when I tell you, this isn’t only a distraction it becomes an obsession.

A year ago I quit. I set it aside and walked away. I cancelled my subscription and gave up.

2 weeks ago, I decided to see it through. I promised myself no more than an hour or so a night (3-4 hours realistically) and to just try to enjoy it, along with the little surprises along the way.

Here are a few of my favorite surprises:

Poor Sir Richard Epson, my 16th Great-Grandfather.

Apparently he wasn’t a very nice guy. He was in charge of collecting taxes for King Henry VII. This little article here kind of explains what happened to him but the short attention span version is, Henry VII died and his lovely, darling son, Henry VIII was crowned king.

He didn’t like my grandfather very much.

He chopped his head off…not in the Ned Stark way you know, the one who passes the sentence should swing the sword but the end result was the same.

But…as if that wasn’t interesting enough, then I found this guy…

Yep. My 17th Great-Grandfather was a Sheriff of Nottingham and he wasn’t the only one. His son was too.

Despite this, I’m impressed with the fact that I expected to find bank robbers and peasants and instead, my English ancestry is chock full of Lords, Ladies, Knights and royalty. I found this little ditty on the interwebs as well. Its a bit difficult to follow but I’m related to all of these people. I may never sleep again.

Yes, those names at the top are my distant cousins, aunts, uncles etc.
And here I sit in my modest albeit comfortable home in the good old USA, dreaming of my ancestors in their castles and finery.
Damn you DNA. Damn you. 🙂

That Lady Diana connection though? I’ll be burning the midnight oil until I find her in the weeds.

 

More to come…I’m only in the 13th century.

Sir Richard EmpsonSo here’s an update:  Someone on Ancestry used a photo of Sir Thomas More for my 16 times great grandfather, Sir Richard Empson! I’ve since fixed it on my tree but I’m fixing it here as well. Below is my actual 16X great grandfather, with King Henry VII of England their other cohort, Sir Edmund Dudley.