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Ask Ellie: How to control Halloween overindulgence

You’re not the only one. I feel the same way.

Dear Lisi: Here we go again. It’s Thanksgiving Monday and I’ve eaten and drunk WAY too much. My stomach is bloated, I feel lazy and lethargic and I’m trying hard to hold in my gas. Don’t laugh. I’m with my entire extended family.

I told myself I’d have some self-control this year. I reminded myself how I feel after the fact. I looked in the mirror and had a good talk. None of it worked.

Now I’m suffering and I know I’m going to hate myself tomorrow morning when I don’t fit into my work pants. Why does this happen every year? Let’s be honest: every holiday.

I need self-control.

Glutton for punishment

You’re winning the fight already by having a healthy sense of self-awareness and humour. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Life is about balance and enjoyment.

You’re not the first person to overindulge, and you’re certainly not the last. You took all the right measures prior, but in this situation, it wasn’t enough. Learn what works for you and what doesn’t.

I LOVE that you looked in the mirror and had a chat with yourself. Now take it a step further. Here are two suggestions:

1) Write down everything you eat and drink. By doing so, you may see where you can change your intake.

2) When you know you’re going away for the weekend and one night will be a doozy: Go light on your meals for a few days leading up to the celebration. That way you won’t feel so guilty the night of.

PS – You’re not the only one. I feel the same way.

Dear Lisi: My neighbours across the street tore down their house. They dug everything up, and all that’s left is a huge hole and lots of dirt. That was in August.

During the rest of the month and into September, my neighbour and some of his buddies would gather there at night, light a bonfire and drink. The first two times didn’t bother me nor other neighbours I have since spoken with because they weren’t that raucous, it was summer and we thought they were celebrating and were happy for them.

But now, nearly two months later, the get-togethers are larger, louder, and no progress seems to have been made on rebuilding the house.

Did they just create a party pit?

Annoyed Neighbour

In answer to your question, I can only say I hope not. If you have a good relationship with your neighbour, ask him. Talk to him about what they’re planning, how long they think it will take, etc. I would also suggest looking up the local noise bylaw where you live. Then gently mention that the parties seem to be getting rowdier and now that summer is over, you hope he could control the noise factor.

Dear Lisi: My daughter just got a phone. She’s 11, which we feel is young. But she walks to and from school with friends. We have rules regarding the use of the phone, and we discussed them before she got it.

In most everything, she’s pretty good. But the one thing she does that drives me crazy is that she often doesn’t answer the phone when I call. I find it so frustrating.

Here’s the problem: my husband doesn’t answer his phone either. She’s practicing learned behaviour because she knows he doesn’t answer his phone. He’s not on board when I get upset with her about not answering.

How do I get them to understand the importance?

Phone Feud

Write your rules down in a contract, then sit down and read them together. Get all three of you to sign the contract. For her, there needs to be a phone-related consequence if she breaks the contract.


Regarding the woman who “crashed” the bowling club (Oct. 7):

Reader: “What a lonely woman the “bowling crasher” must be. She just wants to belong, but unfortunately she is unaware of how her obnoxious behaviour is making her into a pariah.

“I would approach her privately and explain how the women on the team didn’t just show up. They had been invited. In a very delicate but to-the-point way, I would say to her that she may not be aware of the intensity of her voice and that sometimes she comes off sounding rude. Try giving an example.

“Tell her you don’t want to ask her to leave the group as some of the others have suggested but that you would like to give her a chance. Ask her if she could just try. Give her a hug or hold her hand. It’s possible that no one has shown her kindness.”

Ellie Tesher and Lisi Tesher are advice columnists for the Star and based in Toronto. Send your relationship questions via email: [email protected].