For the second year in a row, a White Marsh woman has been featured in People magazine's "Half Your Size" issue. Does that mean Nnedi Uzowihe-Igwe weighs a quarter of what she used to? No, but she has managed to keep the weight off.
Uzowihe-Igwe, 32, gained a lot of weight a few years back. She was pregnant with twin girls, and lost them both in December 2002, when she was eight months along. She became depressed, and ate a lot. She became pregnant again, was put on bed rest, and packed on another 70 pounds. By the time she delivered a healthy baby girl, Treesta, in January 2004, the 5-foot-9 Uzowihe-Igwe weighed 330 pounds.
She managed to drop 160 pounds in nine months by sticking to a high-protein diet and working out twice a day, an hour on the treadmill and 45 minutes with weights.
So she should have felt on top of the world when People sent photographers to her home in November 2005. Instead she felt something else - morning sickness. "Right after they left, two hours after they left, I started feeling funny," she said. "I found out I was pregnant."
She was wary of gaining too much weight, but even more concerned about growing a baby on Medifast shakes. "I didn't want my baby to look like a baby who was on a diet," she said. She still watched what she ate and kept her weight gain to 45 pounds. And she was able to lose that after giving birth to her second girl, Savanna, last July.
That's what won her a spot in People's "alumni" section. It's for "people who lost and had a setback and came back," she said. "Regardless of what you go through, you can always overcome it."
Popcorn and a matinee
Two days into the General Assembly, members were ready to kick back and watch a movie in the middle of the day. OK, it wasn't just any movie. It was An Inconvenient Truth.
The House Environmental Matters Committee screened the Al Gore slide show at 1 p.m. yesterday in an Annapolis hearing room. Despite the popcorn machine rented for the occasion, committee Chairwoman Maggie McIntosh meant business.
"This is my fun way to say, 'Hey, let's have fun, but the science is serious and let's move Maryland forward,'" said McIntosh, who plans to push clean-car and oyster-replenishment bills this session.
Main Street's Chick and Ruth's Delly has named sandwiches for state pols since Spiro Agnew was in Government House. But tradition is one thing, sentiment another. When pols leave office, the menu-tributes go with them.
There's only been one exception, said deli owner Ted Levitt. The chopped-liver-and-corned-beef combo is named for former Gov. Marvin Mandel to this day because Chick and Ruth's is a Jewish deli and Mandel was Maryland's first (and so far only) Jewish governor.
Now Levitt has decided to make two more exceptions, for Bob Ehrlich and William Donald Schaefer. The outgoing Gov and comptroller have been such good customers that they've become friends of the family. Levitt intended to kick them off the menu but told me this week that he couldn't go through with it.
Nevertheless, Levitt rejiggered both namesake sandwiches before enshrining them on the permanent menu. Ehrlich's original choice - a plain-Jane turkey breast with mustard on wheat - has been replaced with the funkier crab cake wrap.
Schaefer's pick - it has changed over the years, from kosher hot dog when he was mayor to grilled pastrami as comptroller - now stands as kosher salami with Swiss cheese and onions on rye.
Connect the dots
Yesterday's Washington Post identified three people in a photo as Doug Gansler, Nancy Kopp and Sheila Dixon. But the woman with Maryland's attorney general and treasurer wasn't the incoming Baltimore mayor. It was City Councilwoman Belinda Conaway. If Dixon felt wronged, she could commiserate with somebody else aspiring to the second floor of City Hall: Belinda's father. "Frank Conaway's gonna be the mayor," the city's Circuit Court clerk said. ... The Sun goofed in a listing of Christmas Eve services last month, putting the Episcopal St. David's Church on Roland Avenue under the heading of Roman Catholic. No souls were lost, says associate rector Daniel Meck. "Well, they always call us 'Catholic lite' anyway." ... Now that Maryland is back to one-party rule, Annapolis can leave all the partisan bickering behind and get down to good, old-fashioned internecine jabs. Senate President Mike Miller welcomed Comptroller-elect Peter Franchot to the podium Wednesday with this: "He thinks he's making policy, but actually all he really needs to do is balance the books." ... Among the many pols who made their way to Annapolis for opening day Wednesday: Baltimore City State's Attorney Patricia Jessamy, who is still awaiting her new city wheels. She arrived in a city-owned 1995 Lincoln "pimpmobile" - and told her driver not to try parking in front of the State House. "I was afraid we would be towed - not to impound. To the junkyard."