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February Letters to the Editor


Offering a free physical, mental, external and nutritional makeover drew dozens of responses. Below are some of the compelling, heartwarming appeals, but in the end, we wanted to give Morgan Ralph and her fiancée, Stefan, a postive start on their new life. Follow them over the next six months as they journey to nuptial bliss on our blog at yellowscene.com.

And the Winner is…

While some make resolutions, mine has more of a deadline than most. I am getting married on Labor Day and my fiancée and I really want to change our lifestyles before we start our lives together. We have terrible habits. Neither one of us really knows how to cook, so we constantly are eating out or frozen foods. And while clothes aren’t a big problem, I really have no style. I wear jeans and a comfy fleece to work pretty much every day of the week while everyone else comes to work looking stylish and cute.

And our fitness leaves a lot to be desired. We are both skiers, but we are hardly “in shape.” But mostly we want to look good for our wedding and beyond! And finally, stress is probably the single biggest issue in our lives. Stefan (my fiancee) is in business school at DU and is constantly worrying about that. And my job demands constant attention, so I stress about that. And wedding stress is getting to both of us (okay, me!), as we are about to make the biggest commitment of our lives!

That’s why we want a makeover.

Morgan Ralph, Louisville

I believe I deserve these services because I just had abdominal surgery and feel like my belly is a cross between a sponge (albeit colorful) and a zipper right now! I’m on weight-lifting restrictions so I’m limited as to how much exercising I can do to get the belly back in shape, but I’m ready to tackle the challenge full-on once my doctor gives me the green light.

I thought getting surgery (not cosmetic, for medical reasons) would leave my belly nice and flat, but was I disillusioned. I may have to WORK at getting those early-20s abs back, not to mention getting my thighs back in shape for skiing. At least I can work on that part while my belly scar is healing. Getting a little help from your generous professionals would sure be appreciated!

Lorrie , Longmont

When I read your article I thought how wonderful these professionals are to donate their time for motivationally challenged people, of which I am queen of this sad group.

In 2005-2006 I lost about 60 pounds and was feeling pretty good about myself.  I had been a certified nurses assistant for three years, caring for the elderly and the terminally ill. But one day, while moving a gentleman, I injured my back terribly. My career came to an abrupt end and I have been out of work for over a year now. Despite numerous visits to doctors, chiropractors and a pain specialist, I have gotten no relief.

I gained back the 60 pounds I lost due to eating poorly and my inability to exercise.  But as horrible as this has been, the worst came in June when my 30-year-old daughter was diagnosed with a serious mental illness and was placed in a state facility.  With psychiatric therapy and medication she is on the road to a better life and now lives under constant supervision.

Without the help, support and knowledge of my sister has from working the mentally ill, my daughter and I would never have made it through this nightmare.

As much as I would love to win this makeover for myself, I am reminded of all the things my sister has done for my daughter and me. Therefore, I wish you would choose my sister, Gayle, for this makeover.  She is the most amazing person, and I love her.

—Thank you,
Brenda , Westminster

My name is Betty and I would like to look as good as I now feel, but I need a makeover. I have been working hard this last year changing my overall health. After graduating from high school I began training as a dental assistant and have worked in the dental industry for the last 35 years.

I spent six years caring for my mother, who was diagnosed with Lou Geherig’s Disease (ALS). Shortly after she passed, I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. At first I thought, “Why me? I’m a good person, why did I get breast cancer?”  Then I realized, why not!  I’m no different than the thousands of other people diagnosed with cancer every day.

Surviving cancer is one of the hardest things anyone can do.  It makes doing anything else easy by comparison.  I knew that somehow I had to get healthy and I had a million excuses not to, but it was time to take care of myself or I may not be around later for the ones I love.

I never thought I was neglecting myself, but I had to admit I was overweight. I was on high blood pressure medicine, lacked energy and had no idea how to proceed.

Taking the advice of my daughter, I joined a gym, hired a trainer and with his guidance I have taken personal responsibility for my health and I have a plan that will keep me healthy for the rest of my life.

In the past 6 months I have lost more than 38 pounds, my blood pressure has fallen from 152/85 to 115/67, and I no longer have to take medicine to regulate it.  I also dropped my body fat from 42 percent to 22 percent. I feel fantastic and have more energy than I’ve had in years!

But it’s not enough! I am proud of the way my body looks, but the eight chemo and 34 radiation treatments (not to mention age and menopause) has taken its toll on my skin and 57-year-old face. I want to look as young as I feel.

Can you help me find a whole new me?

—Floss on,
Betty, Denver

My name is Tara and I’m a working single mom in Lafayette. After a trying 2008 in which I had to rebuild my life after an unexpected divorce and start over in a new town with my two young daughters, I am looking forward to a 2009 full of new beginnings.

There is not a lot of time for me, and money is always tight, so doing things to pamper myself is not high on my list of “needs”. I recently started trying to fit me into my own schedule, but it has been a struggle. I haven’t had a haircut in months, could stand to lose 10 pounds, desperately need to tone up this aching body, find some style and, most importantly, manage my stress and get my life back in balance.  I’d love it if you would consider me for your makeover.

—Tara , Lafayette

After almost 10 years of marriage to a wonderful man with whom I have raised a beautiful daughter (now in the third grade), I have found myself in a rut. I’ve gained weight and I haven’t changed my hairstyle since high school; that’s almost 15 YEARS!!!  I used to turn heads; now I don’t even get a second glance. I want to be the best I can be, and I need help getting there. Please help me!

—Stephanie , Louisville

I was so excited when I read about this contest! I am a 43-year-old single mom to two beautiful, healthy girls.  I have struggled with my weight my entire life. My mom had me on some kind of fad diet or another since I was about 10, so I have no desire to go down that road.

I know that good nutrition and regular exercise is the ONLY way to lose weight and keep it off, but that’s easier said than done.  My health has been relatively good, but I have been struggling with staying in shape. I bought my first home this past year, which was a good thing, but I have much less discretionary income available for “extras” like a gym membership.

Also, I sprained my ankle pretty bad a couple of times last year. As a result, I have gained a few pounds and just don’t feel very good about myself.  I haven’t had a new haircut in a while, can’t seem to find my “personal style”, and would love to learn about eating better (on a tight budget) and how to establish and maintain a good exercise routine.

Thanks so much for considering me!
—Sharon , Longmont

Doh! We slipped up on the cover of our Dec 08/Jan 09 issue. The new pARTicular Art Gallery is, indeed, in Lafayette, not Louisville. YS regrets the error.

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