Foodie With A Lifestyle Change

Hi, I’m Karen and I’m a Foodie. While most people eat to live, I’m one of those that “lives to eat”. If you have been following my food and travel blog over the last six years, you know that Back Road Journal usually revolves around the food I’ve enjoyed during my travels. My laptop and camera have been a constant companion on trips with my husband as I share our latest food adventure.  I’ve also devoted hours blogging about what new dishes that I have created and shared with friends.

I’ve always felt that if you eat the foods that you enjoy in moderation, your weight won’t fluctuate all that much. If I gained a few pounds, I’d watch what I ate for a week or two and quickly go back to my previous weight.  As I’ve aged, those pesky couple of pounds got harder and harder to lose.

What I hadn’t realized was that when you make a change in your lifestyle, it can also make a big difference in your weight. Before our move to Florida two years ago, I took care of our home in New Hampshire as well as our 13 acre property. I was always busy  gardening, mowing the orchard, going up and down on ladders pruning trees and picking bushels of apples. If I was inside, I seemed to always be going up and down the stairs in our antique colonial home and I was constantly on my feet. I used to say that I could eat whatever I wanted all winter because I knew that the few pounds of weight I might gain would be quickly worked off during the rest of the year taking care of our farm.

No more stairs to climb in our new home in Florida, no garden and orchard to maintain meant very little exercise. Instead I was now spending hours sitting at my computer and it resulted in a slow weight gain of about a 1/2 a pound each month. While it doesn’t sound like much, the overall effect was creating a problem I really wasn’t aware of. My husband was the first to bring it to my attention.

I had developed a constant little cough. My husband mentioned it to our doctor and she to ordered a chest X-ray. It was normal and suggested that I see a gastroenterologist as she suspected that I might have silent reflux. That doctor wanted to know if I had changed anything in my eating habits since the cough had originated. While I hadn’t, I did mention that I had gained almost 15 pounds over the past two years.

The doctor said he suspected a problem called GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) and that I needed to lose the weight. He thought that the occasional heartburn that I was having would then go away. He also suggested that I have an endoscopy and colonoscopy  to rule out any other possible medical issues.

The day of my “routine tests” as an outpatient at the hospital was anything but routine. During the endoscopy, I stopped breathing, stomach fluid was aspirated through the endoscope into one of my lungs, the tests were aborted and I had to be resuscitated. I was put on a six day treatment of IV antibiotics. I also given a prescription for a PPI (Proton-pum inhibitors) whose main action is a long lasting reduction of gastric acid production.

Fast forward a couple of months and I’m doing very well. I take a PPI pill each evening before dinner and it has worked wonders with the reflux problem. At first I avoided garlic, onions, tomatoes, citrus, alcohol and chocolate. I’ve been able to slowly add things back but I no longer have an after dinner cocktail and limit wine to one glass or two if we dine out at a restaurant. I don’t drink orange juice anymore and limit caffeine to one cup of tea each morning. My one little treat at night used to be a little Hersey’s special dark chocolate bite but I’ve given those up for the time being as well. To complete my lifestyle change, I started walking a mile a day and when the weather in Florida gets cooler I’ll increase the distance.

As a result of the lifestyle changes I’ve made, I’m slowly losing some weight. I’m now one third of the way back to my ideal weight. Now you might be thinking that I’ll stop sharing recipes or taking you on my food adventures but that is not the case. In my next post, I’ll be giving you a recipe for a salad that you will definitely want to make for your friends and family. After that, I’ll be letting you know about our fall trip to Europe and the fabulous cities and mountain resorts we will be visiting.

I’m happy to be back blogging and I hope you will follow along.

 

 

 

 

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About Karen

I travel the back roads of New England and beyond, sharing great food and interesting places.
This entry was posted in food, lifestyle, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

150 Responses to Foodie With A Lifestyle Change

  1. Oh my goodness! What a time you have had — I’m so glad you are okay and are back to eating what you normally are able to. My daughter was born with GERD and she suffers from it today- 35 years later — It’s a terrible thing and wish you all the best! xoxo Kelli

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your kind wish Kelli. I’m passing the same wishes on to you…I hope each day you are feeling better as well. While I had to give up a few things I really enjoyed, I’ve been able to add back a few things such as garlic and onions that give food such good flavors.

  2. So sorry to hear of your health problems and pleased to hear you’re on the mend. I’ve wondered why you’ve been quiet and look forward to reading your posts again. Take care and all best to you.

  3. Glad you are better and back…..that is scary. I have GERD as about 50% of adults will as we age according to my Dr….not eating 3 hrs before bedtime and an elevated head to our bed helps me….there are many remedies to use and I have been successful in finding them….I also find drinking ice water when I have a flare up immediately stops any burn. Looking forward to your recipes.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Donna, It was a scary ordeal especially for my husband. Sorry that you too are dealing with GERD. Yes, no late dinners anymore and thank you for all of your suggestions. I’m happy to be back and I’ll be posting recipes real soon.

  4. Cocoa & Lavender says:

    A good wake-up call, Karen. We found similar things when we moved from Maine (with an 1806 farmhouse, 5 acres, and three floors of house, and three floors of barn) – one floor living has its advantages, but it has its pitfalls, too. We work on a treadmill to make sure we get a cardio workout, and take steps at work and anywhere we can. Acid reflux was an issue for us, but we have figured out what to do to avoid it, and that includes bigger meals at midday and small salad-based meals at night. Unless we are entertaining, and then we just try to watch our potion sizes..

    I am glad you are on the mend – I know giving up garlic must have been tough for you (from your recipes, I can tell how much you love it!), but I have been there and can never go back (mine is an allergy). Glad you got to bring most things back!

    • Karen says:

      Hi David, Yes you certainly can relate to this post in many ways…it has definitely been a lifestyle change for all of us. I’ve been eating smaller portions at night as well and earlier than before and that really helps. Thank you for your nice comment, it is much appreciated.

  5. Karen, I am happy you have returned to blogging and that you are feeling better!

  6. Gerlinde says:

    I am so happy to hear from you . I am sorry to hear about you having such a scary and dangerous thing happened to you doing a normal procedure but I am glad you are getting better and making lifestyle changes. I have also gained over ten pounds in the last year and need to eat less and exercise more. I can’t wait to hear about your upcoming trip to Europe.

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your kind words Gerlinde, thank you so much. Yes, those pounds creep up so easily don’t they. All our trips have been nice but this one is going to be really special and I’m looking forward to sharing it with everyone.

  7. Oh my Karen, what a scare! So pleased you are now back on track! I will toast to your health this evening. I need to limit my 2 glasses of wine a night to 1 too.
    Have a super week. Also, can’t believe it has been 2 years since your move to Florida!
    🙂 Mandy xo

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Mandy, It really was a scare especially for my sweet husband. Wine is one of the things I’ve had to cut back on but one glass doesn’t usually bother me. Yes, it will be two years next month since we moved from New England to Florida…time does fly doesn’t it.

  8. Madonna says:

    So glad you are getting a handle on your health issues, because I love your food. How odd that it started with a cough. Good thing your doctor was on his/her toes. I have been struggling with extra pounds that have crept on little by little. I lost some, but plateaued. I was pretty frustrated. While at the doctor I mentioned it and she said decrease one carb and increase my walk time by ten minutes. It seems to be working.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your sweet comment Madonna, you gave me a big smile. I’m always happy to hear when someone enjoys my recipes. I know what you mean about hitting a plateau, that can get discouraging. I’ll have to try your doctors idea…thanks.

  9. Wow! Feel better Karen. What a scare for you! I admit during these oppressive hot and humid days in central VA, I tend to draw the drapery, turn on the ceiling fan and spend my late afternoons watching assorted DVD’s on loan from the local library…and I too have 15 pounds to lose, despite my small meals and forced turf mowing/weeding. So low calorie meals from you will be an inspiration! Diane

  10. barbaralilian says:

    Oh Karen, I’m so glad that you went to have tests to find out the problem. All such little things but if not checked out could spiral on to something even more serious. So pleased you are now getting back on the road to recovery. Take good care & I look forward to reading about your trip to Europe. Will be thinking about you.

  11. Angela says:

    Sorry you had such a hard patch but glad to hear that you’re on the mend. I have similar issues re exercise. Two years ago, I added Pilates—at the urging of my kids—and it has made a huge difference in how I feel and how flexible I am. Six months ago, I requested a Fitbit for my birthday, after making good-natured fun of people who wear them all of the time. Surprise! It really motivates me, and I feel ever so much better. Perhaps it would help you to keep moving as well. Good luck!

  12. ahhh Karen, I feel your pain…well maybe not the near life threatening experience you recently suffered but I have lived a life of reflux, acid reduction meds with having decided that after almost 20 years on them, I needed to come off as perhaps they were now causing more harm than good.

    Endoscopy last week shows active inflammation and gastritis…..
    it’ll be back to the meds and like you will need to cut back on alcohol and all that is acidic—ode to my summer love of tomatoes…..
    Glad you’re back in the saddle and feeling better!!!

  13. lulu says:

    Gosh, Karen, what an unexpected consequence of moving. I am so glad you are doing better and wish I were close enough to walk that mile with you. Oh, we had the olive oil cake at our last gourmet dinner and it was a big hit.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Linda. How nice it would be to share one of my walks with you. I’m always thrilled when someone lets me know they made one of my recipes, I’m happy your gourmet group enjoyed the olive oil cake. 😀

  14. Diane says:

    I am delighted that you survived all the problems and that you are back to blogging again. I developed a cough after pneumonia (3 times) and they thought it was reflux but it seems not and the niggling cough continues. Loosing weight is not easy. I put on wight while on holiday in South Africa earlier this year and it just does not come off as easily as it used to. The weight also sits in different places to what it used to!!! Best of luck and good to hear that you will soon be back with some great recipes. Take care and have a good week Diane

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Diane, I’m glad I survived too. What happened during my endoscopy is exactly what Joan Rivers died from so I consider myself very lucky. You are so right about not only it being hard to get rid of the extra weight but how it goes to new places as we get older. I always joke that if I could hang upside-down for a year, everything would shift back to where it once was. 😀

  15. So glad you are feeling better. I can totally relate. It is not easy to control your weight as you get older, either.
    I was wondering why I had not seen your blog lately and now I know. Looking forward to that salad recipe.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jovina, It appears we are not alone in this battle to control our weight as we get older but it certainly isn’t fair, is it. I think you will like the salad recipe, I’ve made it twice for my husband and he loves it. When you get a man to love a salad, you know it’s good. 😀

  16. I am right with you! Gaining weight in Florida and waiting for some cooler weather, though I am building a garden which should burn some pounds off I hope. Had wondered what had happened. Best of luck looking forward to more posts.

  17. Nice to hear from you again, Karen, and I am very happy you are doing so well after your ordeal and look forward to your upcoming posts and recipes. Take it easy and enjoy your gentle walks and exercise. Swimming or gentle water-aerobics should help you too if it is too hot to walk; I did that while I was pregnant and couldn’t run any more: great fun too! All the best. ❤👍

    • Karen says:

      Hi Fatima, I feel the same…it’s nice hearing from you. I hope you and Adonis are having a wonderful time on your European adventures. Water aerobics are a good idea and I think maybe I’ll give them a try at the hotels on our trip this year as almost every hotel has a pool. 🙂 Thank you.

  18. Ingrid says:

    So sorry to hear about your overall ordeal. I know how challenging and frustrating diet issues can be. Welcome back to the blogosphere and hope you’re feeling better.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your wish Ingrid. Yes the ordeal is now behind me and I’m very happy to be blogging again. I wish the weight gain was as easy to take off as it was to put on. 😀

  19. Karen Im happy you come back! I was worry by you!! Welcome back and hope you feeling better!!

  20. A_Boleyn says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about your health issues. I’m glad things are getting better health wise and those pesky pounds are coming off slowly but surely. Looking forward to future recipes.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Boleyn, Slowly but surely the weight is coming off. I’ll have a nice salad recipe up next week…and without one single olive. 😀

  21. Kiki says:

    Oh my, not something anyone wants to go through. I’m glad to hear you’re getting better, even if it’s slowly. I’m really looking forward to hear about your next trip to Europe – where will you be going this time?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kiki, I totally agree…at least I live through it to tell about it, thank God. One country you know we will be returning to is your wonderful Germany…this time the Bavarian Forest, the Black Forest, and outside Munich. I’ll surprise everyone with the rest of the itinerary in a couple of weeks. 🙂

  22. Glad you are feeling better and back on track to enjoy your new home and lifestyle. 🙂 I’ve had one of those summers myself. So, here’s to good health. 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Judy, good health is something I think many of us wish for. Boy I wish I was in New England where summer morning walks were so very pleasant…it is very hot and humid this summer in Florida.

  23. Sorry that you have been having such a rough time, but glad that you on the mend Karen. GOOD to see you update the blog!

  24. Mad Dog says:

    How terrible – I’m glad you’re recovered and back blogging 🙂

  25. Gary Lum says:

    It’s good you have a diagnosis and you’ve started to lose some weight. Hopefully with extra activity, the symptoms will lessen and vanish completely.

  26. Oh dear! What an ordeal you went through. So happy to hear that you are doing much better and the weight is falling off! I agree as we age we need to stay active and watch a bit of what we eat. Sounds like you’ve got a new plan that is working!
    Where are you going this fall? We are leaving for Netherlands, Belgium and Paris day after tomorrow. I am excited to blog about traveling as well as food for the next few weeks!
    Keep feeling good!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Linda, I wish the weight was falling off…it is more like a slow drip, drip, drip. 😀 Do enjoy your trip, it sounds like you are going see some wonderful places.

  27. Penny says:

    So glad that you are on the mend Karen. I’m sure it was a scary situation. Getting older certainly has its challenges. Looking forward to more of your recipes and your European trip. We are heading for France in late September. I’ve been thinking it was time to hear from you! Glad you are sticking with all of us.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Penny, I’m definitely sticking with all of you…I’ve missed my blogging friends. I know you will enjoy your trip to France, I’ll look forward to reading about your adventures. Will motorcycles be involved again?

      • Penny says:

        Not this time. A week on a Viking Cruise on the Rhone River and then a week in Paris. So nice not to have to deal with helmet hair.

      • Karen says:

        Sounds like a dream vacation. I know all too well about helmet hair, I road on the back of my husband’s Harley for years. 😀

  28. Hi Karen, pleased to here you’re on the mend. Strange how these things creep up on us. One brilliant way of losing weight is by digging up your garden and building two patios, a fence and a concrete raised bed. Only bad is bit is I don’t have all day to cook delicious pastries.

    • Karen says:

      Hi David, It sounds like you certainly don’t have to worry about weight with as hard as you have been working. I’m sure all the hard work will be worth it. Thank you for your nice thoughts.

  29. Really wish you well. I thought your breaking your foot was bad enough! Was it a breakage? Seems so long ago. Anyway, glad you’re back.

    • Karen says:

      So nice to hear from you Johnny, I hope you are doing well. You have a good memory, yes I broke my foot two years ago…right before our move. At least that was life threatening. 🙂

  30. Eva Taylor says:

    Oh my goodness, Karen, I am so happy to hear you are on the mend. I had a similar situation last February just before our trip to Arizona, although mine never escalated the way you did, I sure am glad you are better, looking forward to reading about your trip and recipes.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Eva, Thank you for your sweet wish and comment. I’m better and looking forward to sharing more recipes and this year’s Europe trip with my blogging friends.

  31. Lovely to see you back. Take good care of yourself Karen. I too am struggling a little with those extra pounds but luckily the health is OK…damn that menopause, that’s my problem!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Tanya, I really working on getting as healthy as possible. Those extra little pounds creep up so easily, don’t they. Thank you for your nice thoughts.

  32. Debra Kolkka says:

    I hope you are feeling much better soon.

  33. flippenblog says:

    Glad you are back on track. It is a constant battle I know…..

  34. Cathy says:

    You know Karen, I was thinking only this morning that I hadn’t heard from you in a while, and then I opened my emails and found a post from you! Thank goodness you are getting back to normal – that must have given you and your husband quite a fright. I hope you are feeling better and can get back to a healthy weight before your autumn travels, and I wish you a great time!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cathy, thank you so much for thinking about me. It was quite frightening indeed but I’m putting it behind me now. We are looking forward to our travels this year, this should be a wonderful trip. We are spending a few days of our trip in the Bavarian Forest which I think is the area where you are.

  35. Norma Chang says:

    Welcome back! So glad you are on the mend, have things under control and are doing very well. Unexpected surprises do creep up on us as we age,
    A friend of mine who has acid reflux drinks lemon water to help with her acid reflux. Apparently small amount of lemon juice mixed with water can have an alkalizing effect that help neutralize the acid in the stomach. Perhaps you can ask your doctor about this.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for the welcome Norma, it is nice to be back. I will definitely check about the lemon. I drink it in my tea and had actually cut back on the amount I use…thanks.

  36. Louise says:

    Hi Karen,
    Delighted to hear everything has worked out for the better. I too have become aware of that infamous saying, “your health is your wealth.” So scary especially as you say for your husband. Sounds like you are on the road to improvement. Who knows you may even be able to “sneak” in one of those Hershey bites at some time.

    I’ve made quite a few lifestyle changes myself. All in all, I think it’s coffee I miss the most. It just doesn’t seem to agree with my “sick” pancreas. So glad you are back to blogging. I’m hoping one day I too will be back. I miss everyone!!!

    You take care Karen and thank you so much for sharing your experience with us…

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your sweet comment Louise. We both have had to make lifestyle changes and hopefully they will all workout for us both. I’m happy to be back and hopefully you will be in the near future…it was so good hearing from you.

  37. kitchenriffs says:

    Gosh, so sorry to hear about your health problems! I was wondering why you haven’t been blogging lately. Gad to hear you’ve got a workable plan in place to help get you healthy again. And look forward to many more posts to come!

    • Karen says:

      Hi John, It is very gratifying to know that I’ve been missed in the blog world of ours. I’ve missed my many friends out there and will be trying to catch up with everyone real soon. Thank you for your nice comment.

  38. arlingwoman says:

    I’m glad you’re better now and sorry you went through that! Yeesh. It does help to move. Good luck with your walks, and congratulations on taking off the first third!

  39. Jane says:

    Oh, goodness, Karen. You really have been through the mill. While I don’t think a 15 pound weight gain is really significant, it genuinely brought your attention to your overall health. I’m glad you sought medical treatment in spite of the complications that ensued. And I applaud you for making the necessary changes. I have issues with portion control and a very sedentary career in newspaper journalism. It’s not easy for a city girl like me to get outdoors often but I’m finding that summers at our lake house provide for some great activities and I have a beautiful and serene place in which to do my writing.

    All the best, Karen. Please keep us up to date with your travels and food—as long as you are feeling well!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jane, It seems that we both can appreciate how important it is to get health issues under control. Thank you for your lovely comment and I’m happy to know you are looking forward to new posts.

  40. Eha says:

    Karen – Had thought of you so many times and am so glad to see you back. I have had GERD and gastric ulcers for over 20 years and, unfortunately, been on PPIs all that time instead of taking them for the maximum 3 weeks they are ‘safe’. Please, please try to do things ‘naturally’ as soon as possible reading up on university-sourced research on PPIs easily available [I’m on Prilosec]. At this late stage I am doing all I can to lower my dosage and go onto natural remedies entirely as soon as practicable. Your cough was heart-related: early sign of failure – weight loss and walking should greatly ameliorate that. All the very best and so looking forwards to your posts.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Eha, I’m sorry that you have been dealing with similar problems and for such a long time. Yes, I do know that the PPI’s can cause problems over a long period of time. My dosage has already been cut in half and hopefully in a couple of months I’ll be able to switch to something different. Luckily, I don’t have any hear related problems but naturally it is something we should all have checked during our health checkups. Thank you for your kind comment and wish.

  41. Dawn says:

    So happy that you are back, Karen! I’m very sorry that you had to go through so much over the past few months. I’m also very grateful that you shared your story with all of us. You have taught me how important it is to be aware that a major lifestyle change, from a very active to a more sedentary life, can have health implications. It is certainly something we must all be aware of in years to come. I’m looking forward to your salad recipe! Enjoy this extra-special vacation, Karen! ♡

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your kind words Dawn, they are much appreciated. I almost didn’t do this post but felt that it might make readers aware that little symptoms might be an indicator of a bigger problem. I’ll have the salad recipe up next week…I think you will enjoy it.

  42. Helen says:

    I’m glad that the GERD was discovered and that you are finding relief, Karen. These things creep up on us but sounds like you are going to have a much healthier time now!

  43. What a frightening ordeal, Karen! I’m so happy you are doing better now and have a diagnosis to work with so you can keep healing. Even the smallest bit of daily exercise makes all the difference in keeping fit, I know that is very true for me too. Counting my steps everyday is one of my “hobbies”. Looking forward to hearing all about your upcoming trip to Europe!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Marcelle, I’m happy to have the ordeal behind me and am working on the exercise part. My husband got my a Fitbit and today I walked over four miles. I’m happy that you are looking forward to following along on our trip. Thank you!

  44. I Wilkerson says:

    Wow, glad you are on the mend! After years of relative stability, my weight has also started to creep up and the normal adjustments aren’t working for me either. I will think of your story when I am tempted to put something extra in my mouth!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Inger. It sounds like there are a lot of us having a hard time getting rid of those pesky pounds that creep on so slowly that we don’t really notice them. I do hope my story will be helpful to many of my readers. 🙂

  45. So sorry to hear about your health issues but glad you’re on the mend. As you know, I’ve had my share of issues these past couple years and have missed blogging. Like you, and Arnold, I’ll be back, too.
    Take good care of yourself, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Rosemary, You certainly have had your share of health issues and I know that your posts were an inspiration to many. I’ve miss you my friend and look forward to when you will be blogging again. Thank you for your lovely comment and take care.

  46. NativeNM says:

    I had wondered about your absence from blogging and so glad to hear that you are okay! I too have had to change some eating and exercise habits resulting from GERD. Mine came about not from food but as a result of taking too much over the counter pain meds for migraines over a period of time. I have learned that regular exercise and letting go of the spicy foods especially in the evenings help with the GERD. Still have the headaches, but that’s another issue. I look forward to your upcoming experiences, recipes and fall travels. Stay healthy and take care!!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jan, I had know idea how many of my fellow bloggers are having to deal with health problems from GERD, I’m sorry to hear that you are one of them. I’m happy to know that you will be following along on our adventure. Thank you for your kind words.

  47. Karen, I was wondering why you hadn’t posted for awhile- good luck on your healing and I look forward to your next recipe posts!

  48. pamela511 says:

    That’s too bad, Karen, but it’s great that you’re feeling better. Take care!

  49. Oh my goodness, Karen! What an ordeal to go through, but glad to hear you are on the mend. I can’t wait to read about your trip to Europe, and am cheering you on as you focus on your health!

    • Karen says:

      You gave me a smile, Laura. I’m happy to know that you will be cheering me on…the support will be wonderful. I’m glad that you will be following along on our trip to Europe. We are going to some wonderful new spots and I can’t wait to share them with everyone.

  50. Lovely to see you back .. and sorry to hear that you haven’t been well. Hoping that you are feeling better and well done on the weight loss .. I’m looking forward to the salad recipe … 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Julie, It is nice to be back. The weight is something that will take some time to get off but I’m working on it. The salad recipe will be up this week, I hope you will like it.

  51. reggiorif says:

    Great to hear you’re back on your feet! I look forward to reading your next posts. Keep up the good health 🙂

  52. Oh my goodness Karen! I’m glad you are ok and doing much better. What a scary wake up call! I know I sure have put on the pounds in the last few years. It’s hard, but it sounds like you have this under control. Welcome back!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Debbie, From the comments here, it seems that some extra pounds is a common problem for a lot of us. I’m working on that pesky problem as good health is very important. Thank you for your lovely comment.

  53. Daphne says:

    Good Afternoon Karen, I am so very sorry to hear that you have been so unwell. How traumatic for both yourself and your husband. It is dreadful to think that a routine investigation could turn your world upside down.
    I am so pleased that you are feeling better and that the medication you have been prescribed is helpful.
    I have to say, I find if I do not walk each day, those pesky pounds tend to creep onto my hips. I do understand how difficult it is to walk in such a hot climate as when we lived in Cyprus, July and August, were so hot we just had to give in to the heat and wait for the cooler weather to arrive to exercise.
    How exciting for you…. a trip to Europe. Enjoy yourself and I look forward to hearing all about your gastronomic adventures when you return.
    Best Wishes to you.
    Daphne

    • Karen says:

      I have to agree with you Daphne, I had no idea that the tests which are considered routine could go so wrong. The weather hasn’t been so hot for the last couple of days so I’ve up my walking to between three and five miles. Thank you for your kind thoughts and wish…we are looking forward to our trip.

  54. My Gosh Karen! Thanks for the update. I can’t believe you had to be rescescitated (how ever the hell you spell it!) Anyway, glad to hear you’re on the mend. Keep us posted.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Lea Ann, Thank goodness I was unconscious during the whole ordeal. 😀 I’ll definitely keep everyone up to date. I appreciate your kind words, thank you.

  55. reg45 says:

    What an unwanted adventure this was Karen! I totally understand the lifestyle change as I moved to Yucatan, Mexico in 2004 and it was here where I found you (no you are not a Mayan ruin…LOL.) I still follow you, but have continued my blogging of our travels, published two books in the US and for the last four years, I have been working on my recipe blog buenprovecho.me here on WordPress. I am not quite as sophisticated as you with your blogging, but I have over 100 followers who, from time to time check in to see my current 325+ recipes. We try to keep in shape by going to the gym five days a week with our trainer. Otherwise we would kill ourselves with food.

    FYI…tonight I made your Grilled Pork Chops with Orange Ginger Sauce and my spouse thought they were the best. The key I think was the brineing in salt and sugar. Keep on blogging. Has anyone introduced you to Seminole Coleslaw yet?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Reg, It is so very nice to hear from you! You gave me a laugh, some days I feel like I might be a ruin. 😀 Congratulations on all that you have accomplished…I’m very happy for you. For all the years I’ve spent in Florida, I’ve never heard anyone mention Seminole coleslaw although I have heard of Seminole salad dressing. I’m glad to know that you both enjoyed my grilled pork chops recipe, thank you. 🙂

      • Karen says:

        BTW, I’ve tried several times to get on your blog but the link only takes you to 2011.

      • reg45 says:

        Seminole Coleslaw Recipe
        Half of a cabbage shredded
        4 green onions sliced diagonally
        1 package chicken Ramen noodles
        1/2 pkg. Sunflower seeds

        Dressing
        1/2 cup oil
        2 tsp. Sugar
        1/2 tsp.salt
        1.5 tsp. Red wine vinegar
        1 tsp. Black pepper

        Blend salad ingredients. Toss with dressing

  56. Oh my Karen, what an ordeal you and your husband have been through (it’s painful for care givers too). We’re all happy you’re on the mend and back to blogging. I remember I came back to blogging after being gone for 2 months (downsizing, moving, etc.) and then you disappeared. I knew something had happened. I hear you about getting older; my activity level has fallen off since leaving my 1 acre yard with a 2-story house and lots of beds to take care of to a beautiful detached condo on 1 floor (not including the basement) and an Association that does all of the yard work. Anyways, welcome back and I look forward to more recipes and posts on your travels 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Judi, Yes when we down size life gets easier but it does mean we are less active. It was definitely hard on my husband. The doctor called him and toldl him I’d stopped breathing…I was still blue when he first saw me. Thank you so much for your kind thoughts and I’m happy to know you are looking forward to my future posts. 😀

      • I know it was hard on you and then of course recovery. Having been a caregiver for Gene so many years I could feel your husband’s anguish as it is very hard to experience a loved one’s serious health issues. Keep smiling and enjoying life 🙂

  57. Happy to hear you are doing well, Karen! Like others, I was wondering about your absence and have missed your presence around here!

  58. I was thinking that I hadn’t seen any blog posts from you for a while. I’m sorry to hear about your health issues and the scare with the endoscopy – how frightening! I’m glad you’re doing much better now and I’m looking forward to reading your posts again. 🙂

  59. Eileen Sim says:

    Hi Karen, I hope you feel better and better every day with your lifestyle changes. As a fellow “live to eat” person, I’m making lifestyle changes to get to my ideal weight while still enjoying food.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Eileen, Thank you for stopping by for a visit and to leave such a sweet comment. It is nice to meet another person that “lives to eat”. 🙂

  60. So very sorry for all you had to endure Karen! I am so very happy you are feeling better. Take it slow and know you were very missed! ♥

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Didi, It is heartwarming to read all of these lovely messages. I do have so many wonderful blogging friends and appreciate your kind words.

  61. So glad to hear you are doing better but sad to read what you’ve been through. Yikes, the resuscitation sounds scary! I have a very good friend who developed a nagging cough and it turns out she had the very same thing. Best wishes to you and your weight-loss journey, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Susan, I’m really doing so much better…thank you. I had no idea about the silly little cough being the sign of something much more problematic under I went to the doctor. I appreciate your lovely wish, thanks.

  62. Marlene says:

    Oh my gosh, Karen, I’m so sorry to hear you’ve gone through such an ordeal! Thank goodness you’re back to good health. I know all about creeping poundage and have had my experiences with acid reflux too. These things aren’t fun, and pose real challenges for us food bloggers. I need to get back to more salads, so I’ll look forward to your next post. Good health to you, my friend!

  63. Karen says:

    Thank you Marlene, I’m happy to have the ordeal behind me and am looking forward to catching up with what all of my blogging friends have been up to. It is so true, food bloggers tend to all have the same issue with creeping pounds being a problem. I hope you will enjoy the salad recipe, we had it twice and my husband loves it.

  64. Great post and I am happy you are adjusting to your move. Such pretty photos as always.

  65. Liz says:

    Hi Karen- I’m so happy and relieved to hear you are okay! That was a scary situation but I’m glad that the dietary changes and exercise have been helping. Sending positive thoughts and prayers for continued health!

  66. Hi Karen, I am sorry to hear about all of that ordeal you went through but delighted to know you are on the other side of it now. It is amazing how our routines and habits, including what and how we eat, influence our health. I’m glad you are doing better and of course I look forward to more food posts! Take care of yourself 🙂 Dana

  67. Tricia Buice says:

    What a scary time for you Karen. Very sorry to hear about the troubles but so glad you are on the mend. I know it’s crazy hot in Florida right now – hoping it cools off soon. Take care and welcome back. You have been missed.

  68. mjskit says:

    Oh Karen, so sorry to read about your GERD problems and thrilled you were able to get it under control. From personal experience, I know it’s a daily battle but certainly not one that can’t be won. Well, you look GREAT!

  69. Hi Karen! I’ve been popping in over here every once in a while and I’m so glad to see you are back! I’m sorry about the health issues and glad you are able to get the GERD under control!! Take care!

  70. all the best with getting healthier and that sounds like a scary experience, so pleased your ok

  71. Oh my, Karen! What a trying time you have gone through. I’m so glad to hear to are healing and getting back your health. Keeping you in my thoughts, and praying Irma doesn’t cause havoc!

  72. I’m so happy you’re back to being healthy! And I love this post!

  73. Oh, my gosh, I’m so sorry you had to go through this!!! I’m glad you’re OK and that you’re on the road to recovery. Whew!!!

  74. Debra says:

    Karen, what a story! I had noted you weren’t blogging and thought that perhaps a busy life in a new home just changed your interests! I’m so glad I stopped by today just to “check” in on you! It has to have been very stressful for you and your entire family as they’ve watched you struggle. Truly frightening! I’m so glad to know you’re on the mend and cultivating new and healthy habits. I wonder now if you were spared during Hurricane Irma? I certainly hope you continue to do well!

  75. So happy to hear you are slowly getting back on track, Karen. Hope you get well soon and I’ll be looking forward to your posts.

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