April 30, 2009

Top 8

eight things I am looking forward to

1. my 5K this weekend
2. seeing my sister, niece, nephew, and bil this weekend
3. starting the new Frank Peretti/Ted Dekker book
4. Mr. Right’s next commission check
5. starting a Roth IRA
6. getting life insurance (which will probably happen next month)
7. snuggling with Mr. Right
8. lunch!

eight things I did yesterday

1. got poked at the health fair
2. had a bone density screening
3. weighed myself
4. worked
5. biking at lunch
6.watched TV
7. blogged
8. read all your wonderful blogs!

eight things I wish I could do

1. a 10 minute mile
2. get down into the 120s
3. love my body
4. be a great wife
5.play the piano
6.be less moody
7. read more
8.grow my blog readership

eight shows I watch on TV

1. LOST
2. Chuck
3. Heroes
4. American Idol
5.Biggest Loser
6. My Name is Earl
7. Family Guy
8. ???

eight people I tag
Anyone who’d like to play along (x8)

April 29, 2009

Weigh-In Wednesday: 5K in 3 days

This morning is filled with good news and bad news.

The bad news first to get it out of the way.

Last week’s weight: 133.8
This week’s weight: 134.4

I’m up a little over a half pound, and I know why. I spent all day Friday and Saturday at a charity event and I was pretty much at their mercy for my meals. I did bring along my low cal salad dressing and fat free sour cream for my salad and potato at lunch, but I did way to much snacking and there were few healthy options available. 0.6 pounds really isn’t that big of a deal though so I’m not stressing too badly.

My plan of action to fix it – be careful to stay on the wagon this weekend, even though I’ll be attending a birthday party.

Also, at today’s health fair I did a bone density screening. I’m at -0.1, which is in the normal range (normal goes from -1.0 to +1.0), but the lady said that for someone my age she’d like to see me higher. She suggested weight bearing exercise (been there done that, lady! I do weights twice a week and run at least 3 times a week) and consume more calcium.

Plan of action to fix it – join the sisterhood in the 3 dairy a day challenge. I typically get 1-2 servings without trying. April will be happy to know that I’ve resolved to drink a glass of milk on days I have extra calories, instead of a doctor pepper.

The main purpose of the health fair is the blood screening, which tests cholesterol, blood sugar, and all the usuals. Last year at the fair my blood sugar was around 40, I anticipate about the same this year. I’ve discussed it with my doctor and as long as I don’t get light headed she’s cool with it. I won’t get my official results for another few weeks. The bad news? They couldn’t find a vein in my arm and had take it out of my hand.

Plan of action – whine and complain all day today about how badly it hurts, then show off my bruise tomorrow.

On to the good news – last night I ran 3 miles in 32 minutes. That’s a 10.67 minute mile! Very much an improvement from my 12 minute miles I’ve been running. Let me tell you 85 degrees is hot for a run! When it starts warming up more I’m either going to have to delay my runs till around dusk or else head inside to the treadmill.

The fact that I ran 3 miles in the afternoon heat means I’ll have no probably running 3.1 miles this coming Saturday morning!!! 

My other piece of good news is my body fat composition. Its gone down 2% in the past month!!! Which tells me that all the people who say that they can tell a difference in my body – even when I can’t – really aren’t full of crap.

I may not be losing the weight as quickly as I would like, but I’m losing the fat which is the icky, gross and unsexy part!!

I’m currently in the “Average” category, but if I keep this up I’ll be in the “Fitness” category by my next assessment in two months!

April 28, 2009

Count your blessings, name them one by one

Quite sad really, how I could have started yesterday off feeling so thankful for my life, and ended wallowing in self pity.

After a doctor's appointment yesterday (a checkup with my allergist), I went shopping. First stop was to the used bookstore. I didn't find as much as normal, and didn't get a whole lot of trade credit for the books I turned in.

Then it was on to the Ross/Marshall/Old Navy/Target complex to shop for workout clothing. Only I couldn't find anything good. The ON store had some tops, but a friend of mine that I work out with already has every color. I certainly don't want to spend $10 on a tank top that it looks like I borrowed.

The other stores didn't have much variety, so I headed to Kohls. They had even less, and it was more expensive. Then it was off to Wal-mart - they had a few things that I liked, but I got disgusted with my body and ended up not buying anything.

Do you know how hard it is to find a XS workout top? And a size 32 sports bra? As a friend of mine pointed out, they assume that if you're an XS or a 32 that you don't need to work out. Surely I'm not the only XS up top that's a M/L downstairs??

After shopping it was time for dinner out - a friend of mine is a D.A.R.E./School resource officer and was waiting tables to raise money for her D.A.R.E. program. Over dinner I found out that my 100 calorie popcorn that I had for lunch (in an effort to save calories to have pizza for dinner) wasn't 100 calories after all.

Let me take this moment to say that I realize how completely stupid all these complaints are. Like when I feel sorry for myself because my closet is so big I have to dust/vacuum it.

My wonderful husband tried to make me feel better to no avail. One thing I don't understand is how he puts up with my foolishness!

My blessings - lest I forget them again:

*a God who loves me even when I'm ungrateful
*a God who forgives me for being ungrateful
*a God who loves me enough to send His Son to die for my ungrateful attitude
*a God who blessed me with a wonderful husband
*a wonderful husband who loves my body
*a wonderful husband who loves me even though I'm messed up in the head
*a wonderful husband who is patient
*a wonderful husband who is hard working

April 27, 2009

Blessed to be a blessing

While I was excited about Dave Ramsey’s Town Hall for Hope, I assumed I would know most of everything he was going to say. After all I’ve been through Financial Peace University, read the book, and listen to him practically every day on the radio.

What I got was an unexpected message of hope for me. Mr. Right and I are doing well right now – his main business is selling foreclosure cabins. And to be honest, I felt a little guilty about it.

I knew my guilty wasn’t a Godly conviction. Mr. Right is refreshingly honest with his clients and he works very hard for every sale, but the twinge of guilt was still there.

So I very much welcomed Dave’s perspective on wealth. Its not a pie – a common believe that there is only so much money and in order to increase your wealth, someone else’s has to decrease.

Instead it’s a candle – when I light my candle, it frees me to light the candles of those around me.

And that’s exactly what my husband is doing. He’s finding a rental cabin at a great price for his clients, thus lighting his candle. As they rent out the cabin for a profit (Mr. Right runs the numbers before the sale to make sure it will cash flow), the owner’s candle is lit. The owner goes on to light the candle of the rental management company, who in turn lights the candles of the maintenance and housekeeping crews that keep the property rentable. When a tourist rents out the cabin, they bring their vacation dollars to the area to light the candles of restaurant owners, servers, outlet shops, and attractions all over town.

Not to mention when I take a portion of the candle to TJ Maxx for a new outfit.

As long as I bless others while I’m being blessed by God, I have nothing to feel guilty about. That was a message of hope this lady really needed to hear.

If I may brag a moment – Mr. Right and I got our electric bill in the mail this weekend. It was only $27!!! Talk about a financial blessing! That’s about $50 under what the bill normally is. Our weather has been so nice that we haven’t had to run our HVAC unit very much at all.

What way has God blessed you recently?

April 23, 2009

Hope

Edited to add - I used 10 lb weights in toning class today!!!!

*I'm really excited about tuning in tonight for Dave Ramsey's Townhall for Hope. My local Christian station is playing it on the radio tonight, but to find a location for the townhall in your area just follow the link. I listen to Dave every afternoon on the drive home from work and look forward to hearing his message tonight.


*Also - my HR lady told me my pants were too big for me this morning! Okay so she's also my friend and a very incouraging person, but I'm going to retire these pants any way.

I'm planning on going shopping the week before the 5K to buy a new workout outfit. Normally I can't justfiy spending money on workout clothing, when I have plenty of t-shirts and old shorts that use to belong to Mr. Right at the house. I figure for running the 5K I can splurge a little.

While I'm at TJ Maxx looking for my 5K ensemble, I think I'm going to venture into the size 6 pants and see what happens!!

(Did I mention the 5K is next weekend and I'm getting a little freaked out?)

*Today is my Friday - I'm working an all day charity event tomorrow - so have a great weekend!!

April 22, 2009

Weigh-In Wednesday: Do These Jeans Make Me Look Fat?

Edited to add that a friend saw the picture and told me yes indeed the jeans aren't flattering and to burn them immediately. How's that for honestly! Although I prefer that to "no Brooke, your legs really are that big."

I'm finally shrinking!!

Starting weight: 134.6
Goal: 129
Last Week: 136.4

This week: 133.8!!!!

I attribute a little of that to Aunt Flow packing up and leaving late last week, but part of it has to be real!!!

I'm very excited - and very thankful to the Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans, especially April. (And thanks Christy for pointing me her direction.)

After talking with April at length (once I get going, its hard for me to shut up - even via email), we figured out that I probably wasn't getting enough calories. April helped me figure out where I needed to be calorie-wise on lazy days and on workout days.

I'm still gonna have to work a little harder though. Because I got so use to eating 1200 calories, it was actually hard to eat 1700 on a heavy workout day (running and weight training). I'll even admit to adding a Dr. Pepper for dinner because I didn't have enough calories and I was too full to eat anything else.

Please know that I understand that's not exactly what April had in mind, and I'm working to get my calories more evenly distributed. But the point is it worked. After several weeks of not seeing any results, I up my calories and bam - 2.6 pounds lost!

If any of you are Biggest Loser fans, I'm sure you saw the food diary that Ron, Fillipe, and Kristin made. I understood their frustration when Bob told them all that they hadn't done a good job. Calories are not necessarily the enemy.

(As a side note - anyone else annoyed with Kristin's attitude when she was voted off? She was in the bottom two for two weeks in a row, she deserved to go home!)

This weekend my family went out to eat, as per our usual every month or so. When my great-aunt saw me she said "you've lost weight!"

"No, but I'm trying."

"You have, you're skinny!"

You can tell she never had daughters, she set herself up for this one...

"And I was fat before?"

Taking a look at the pictures, I have to wonder if this was just my bad angle. I think this picture isn't flattering. I promise, my legs are not bigger than Mr.
Right's. They are the same - we measured.

April 21, 2009

Depression Bread - Cooking with Clara...and Tiffany...and Brooke

A few weeks ago I found Tiffany's blog about making depression era bread. She had taken one of Clara's (a 90+ year old woman who lived through the great depression) recipes and made it her own.

I bake it last night and it was great. I think I used only about 6-7 tsp of dry active yeast, and 4 tsp salt.

Now you see why I'm not good at baking cookies and things like that - I'm not an exact cook. I love things that you can just throw the ingredients in and eyeball it.

I made the bread last night, but at the advice of my grandmother left it sitting out (covered with a towel) to rise overnight. This morning I divided it into 6 loaves - baking one and putting the other 5 in the freezer.

I brought a piece with me to work, and its delicious! :)

And at $0.50 a loaf, you can't beat that!

April 20, 2009

Monday already?

I'm still half asleep, so I'll give you a quick rundown of my weekend.

Friday
*Started Black by Ted Dekker
*watched last Monday's Heroes Episode
*did most of my house work so that on...

Saturday
*rode around with Mr. Right while he photographed cabins for clients
*met my family for dinner at a new restaurant
*ran 30 minutes with Mr. Right
*got upset with Mr. Right because he had no problem keeping up with me on the run (I've been working at it for over a month - he never exercises)
*finished Black (thanks Lois!)
*started Red by Ted Dekker

Sunday
*church with my parents
*afternoon nap
*Sunday evening blues
*made Bananna Oat Bran muffins (yuk - threw them out after eating the first one)
*made hashbrown casserole for later in the week (delish!)
*watched Celebrity Apprentice
*got less than 5 hours sleep because of the hubs need to listen to conservative talk radio while he sleeps...which eventually turns into the UFO alien call in hour.

April 17, 2009

The Dave Ramsey Kool-Aid is Particularly Tasty

Living like no one else is hard work.

That’s why no one else is doing it.

Last night, I went to the hospital to visit a friend that had a baby. 9 lbs and 7 oz of natural child birth! I don’t envy her!!

Ordinarily I would have used it as an excuse to not work out and to get fast food. Instead, I pulled two containers of soup out of the freezer (beef stew for Mr. Right, chicken chili for myself) to thaw for dinner.

After work I changed, ran 2.5 miles then headed to the hospital. I think that the run actually helped out – otherwise I would have been stuck downtown in 5 o’clock traffic.

A mutual friend, who was meeting me there, offered to pick up fast food for me on the way. She was getting food for the proud parents and said she didn’t care to get something for me as well.

I’ll tell ya, I was tempted. Instead, I laid out a Fiber One bar to eat during the drive (I knew I wouldn’t be getting home until late). Now I will admit to finishing off the fries that were leftover, but I had extra calories for the day so that didn’t hurt anything.

I have goals for myself. Neglecting exercise and buying fast food just don’t figure in. I want to:

1. Lose 10 lbs this year.
2. Pay off the mortgage on 5.5 acres of land Mr. Right & I want to build our dream house on.
3. Get life insurance on the two of us (when you are married to a tobacco using hemophiliac, that’s not as simple as it sounds).
4. Open a Roth IRA.

I am determined to meet my goals this year. (The land is more of a 2-3 year plan. We owe $33K, so unless he sells a monster cabin with a huge commission, its not happening this year.) I will meet these goals.

I also want to say a big “Praise God” for the blessings in my life. I know that I’m fortunate that these are even possibilities. He’s been so good to me, even when I don’t deserve it.

April 16, 2009

Giveaway Winner!!

I wasn't really dragging my feet on drawing a winner of my giveaway - I had a vision in my head of how I wanted to do things. I thought drawing out of a cup for my first vlog would be perfect.

I got my pen and paper ready.



I wrote out all your names.



And had the prize on hand.



I had planned on doing all of that on camera, but for file size sake, I just did the drawing itself. My apologies, I promise I'm not a 12 year old - however I may sound.

video

Congrats Amy! And thank to everyone who participated.

April 15, 2009

Quitters never win...

...but at the rate I'm going neither will I.

Shrink into Summer challenge
Starting weight: 134.6
Goal Weight: 129
Weight every week since: 135
Today's weight: 136.4

I'm seriously considering just giving up. Eating whatever I want, my weight stays steady at 138. Why should I push this hard for 3 pounds that I don't even notice missing?

Ii'm going to spot myself 1.5#s this week, since I'm scheduled to saddle up on the cotton pony and ride into the hut tomorrow. Even still - I have just maintained this weight.

I'm not going to allow myself to quit...yet. This week I'm too emotional with PMS, but if the scale doesn't start moving (the right direction) soon I'm going to throw in the towel.

Yesterday during my total body toning class, I saw myself in the mirror doing military presses and I looked scary! I could see the definition in my arms and I looked like I could kick some serious booty!

Mr. Right agreed with me, my arms are getting more toned, he says my torso was so small to begin with he can't tell a difference.

When I asked about my legs he said that he didn't know because he hadn't seen me in shorts lately. Apparently seeing me naked doesn't count.

April 14, 2009

Easter Pics

I'm excited because I found some of the princess with her back turned - that way I can post some egg hunt pictures, without disrespecting my sister's wishes about her daughter's face being posted on the internet.



This is a shot of part of Papaw's farm. When his parents were dividing up their estate way back in the day, land in our area wasn't worth anything. Most of his siblings (there were 9 of them) wanted money. Only Papaw and two of his brothers wanted the land - they loved to work it (Papaw still has cows and of course Inez the donkey. He also plants a garden every year). To papaw, this land was priceless. its easy to see why.



At the foot of the hill is my parents house, the house I grew up in. I lived there from the time I was born until I packed up for college. Growing up, I always wanted to move around a lot. Looking back, I'm glad we never did.



Okay now that we've got the sentimental crap out of the way - on to the egg hunt!

My Mamaw hiding eggs:




My BIL helping the Princess and my cousin with the hunt:



My Mamaw, aunt, cousin, and the princess:




Okay so I promised no more sentimental crap but too bad! See how the princess's hair is crimped? Back in the day my parents didn't have a lot of money. Instead of wasting it on a crimper, my dad would crimp it the old fashioned way. He'd braid our wet hair, we'd sleep on it overnight, and when the braids were taken out the next morning - voila! Crimped hair. My sister does that to my niece's hair now.




The adults looking on - I'm the one on the far right. My mom is on the far left, then my sister and aunt. Seeing this picture, I understand why Mr. Right almost smacking my sister on the rear while we were on vacation was an honest mistake.

April 13, 2009

Weekend Update

As usual for Good Friday, my family and I take our day off of work (being a government worker is great!) and go shopping. Not exactly the most mournful, respectful activity, I'll admit. We did have a very real, scary moment of darkness that day.

By the time the tornado that went through Arkansas and Middle Tennessee reached us, it had calmed down significantly. However it was still strong enough to knock the power out as I stood looking through the sale racks at Sears.

I'm a big baby when it comes to thunderstorms, so I was very fortunate to have Mr. Right by my side. When the lights when out, I grabbed ahold of his hand - almost tight enough to draw blood. Thankfully it came back on within seconds, and we took the escalator down to meet up with my parents just in case it went out again.

We also hit Williams Sonoma so Mr. Right and I could use a $50 gift card we received as a wedding gift. My man is a math whiz - we were careful to use every penny of the gift card without going over too much. Our total at checkout? $50.08. We only spent $0.08 out of pocket and got the following:

Jalapeno cornbread mix
4 dish cloths
a loaf pan
a spoonula

All of that for $50 sounds expensive to me, but for $0.08 I can't complain. It made my Sams Club deals pale in comparison.

Note to self: never take Mr. Right to the warehouse store again. He doesn't seem to understand that a house that never gets below 78 in the summer just isn't cool enough to keep a 50 lb bag of rice from going bad.

Saturday was low key - Mr. Right had to work, so I just hung out at the house cleaning, getting my dish ready for Easter. Once I got all my chores taken care of, I went for a run. My 5K "training" called for a 25 minute run without stopping - I amazed myself by actually doing it!

About 3 minutes in, the house keys that I had put in my pocket fell down to my ankle. Unfortunately not only did the track pants I was wearing have a hole in the pocket, but they were also lined.

So when the keys fell out of the pocket and to my ankle, they didn't fall out of the pants. They just sort of flopped around between the lining and the outside of the pants annoying me. When I got back to the house, I had to lift up my leg (very difficult when they feel like jello) to get the keys to fall back toward the pocket so I could fish them out.

Easter was great - I'm waiting on Mr. Right to email me pictures, and I'll share them when he does.

I hope you all had a very blessed Easter weekend!

April 10, 2009

My checklist

...or Confessions of a list addicted dork.

I have a confession to make. Its Thursday. And I’m going to hold this post till Friday. Shhh – don’t tell on me okay?

I appreciate all your thoughts and comments yesterday…erm…Wednesday in regards to my weight loss problems. Several of you had some good ideas, and so I’m going to try them out and see how they work.

Not very scientific, since I’m going to try several things at once, but here we go.

1. Upping my calorie intake.

Back in the day I lost 8 pounds (down to 126) on 1500 calories. This included no exercise. So why, weighing more than I did then, am I exercising 3-5 times a week and eating 1200 and seeing no results? Maybe I am being too hard on my body.

As recently as November I was eating fast food every day. Then I switch to sack lunches and exercising for 5 and have only lost 3 pounds? Maybe it was too much of a shock and now I’m stockpiling fat. (Although its good to know I’m set if I ever really do experience a famine.)

2. The Wendie plan.

I don’t do WW points, but I count my calories on LiveStrong – Daily Plate. You enter your body weight, activity level, and how much you want to lose, and it tells you how many calories you can consume. To lose 2 pounds a week my number is 1250.

Since I really don’t have a range (as described with WW points) I’m just gonna have to wing this a little. I think that 1250 should be my very low day and somewhere around 1600 should be my high.

I knew that you weren’t suppose to do the same work out all the time or else your body would get use to it – I’m sure diet is no different.

3. Only having one cheat day.

Like Christy said, if I add more calories spread throughout the week, I should be able to do this no problem. No need to wait till Saturday to have the ice cream sandwich, I’ll just save a couple hundred calories for it tonight. That way come Saturday I’m not pigging out on everything.

I’m leaving Sunday as my cheat day, not only because this coming one is a holiday, but mostly because that’s the day that eating is a social occasion. Either lunch at the Cracker Barrell with my grandparents, or at my parents house, eating one of my mom’s grilled cheese sandwiches – the best ever made.

(Seriously, they are. Just ask Mr. Right. Only don’t tell his mom, because that would hurt her feelings.) Not to mention the popcorn and never ending supply of Pepsi in my dad’s “office fridge” (the one in the garage – kept at such a low temperature the Pepsi gets ice chunks in it.)

Some Saturdays, especially if I stay at home, I only have 800-900 calories. I try my best to sleep through breakfast and just snack for lunch.

4. Drinking water

I think I’m pretty good at this, but I need to track it to be sure. Except for the days I'm lazy and don't feel like going to the bathroom as much as proper hydration required. More on my bathroom laziness in the fiber section.

5. Measuring portions

For most dishes that isn’t a problem. My Del Monte fruit cup tells me that there are two servings in the container, so when I eat the whole container I know that I’ve had 140 calories. I measure my bran flakes this morning and found that I’ve been eating a serving and a half. Its only 55 extra calories, but adding 50 here and there will start to add up!

And Lastly…

6. Fiber

Honestly, this one scares me. If I’m not trying, my body gets around 10 grams of fiber a day. I wish I were kidding. The bran flakes will change that somewhat, but I need to be more conscious about how much I get. Today I’ve got 495 calories left and have already consumed 34 grams of fiber!

I’m a little nervous about what kind of effect that might have on me…but eventually my body will get use to it. Right?

April 09, 2009

Things I Love Thursday - giveaway!!



I've read several bloggers who have mentioned that they are a BZZ Agent, and I thought it sounded cool. Basically, you get free products and are encouraged to share your honest opinion about them with others.

Diet Mountain Dew is my first campaign. I was looking forward to getting my samples - I'm a Mountain Dew fan, but skeptical of diet drinks with artificial sweeteners.

Monday night I tried Diet Dew for myself - big mistake. I don't consume a lot of carbinated beverages and my system wasn't ready for that much caffeine that late at night.

It was completely my fault, because the packaging talked about Diet Mtn Dew giving you that burst of energy without the sugar, I guess I just underestimated it.

I was still up and 10 that evening, my typical bedtime. It gave me more time to read, but I was tired the next day.

As far as flavor goes, it was great! Next time I should see if they make caffeine free diet dew (although my pastor says that just complete defeats the purpose! :P ) because I love the flavor of the drink.

Now for the giveaway - I'm giving one lucky reader a coupon for a free 12 pack! Just leave me a comment and you're entered!

Also, Bzz Agent likes feed back from people who've been "Bzzed". Just log on to chatthreads.com and enter conversation ID 101-683-466080. From there you can enter to win a $100 Amazon gift card. Not sure how good your chances are to win, but if you have a few minutes it couldn't hurt to try.

For more great products, head on over to the Diaper Diaries.

Edited to add the giveaway will close Monday at 5PM Eastern Time - Good luck!

April 08, 2009

Shrinking into Summer...only I'm not Shrinking

Previous weight: 135
Current weight: 135

I'm really not sure what I'm doing wrong. I'm consuming around 1200-1400 calories 5 days a week, and I'm working out at least 5 days a week.

I'm training for a 5K, so I run 3 days a week. Plus I'm faithful to my Tuesday/Thursday lunch time toning classes. Some weeks I'll even throw in a spin class or afternoon on the elliptical to mix things up.

The only place where I slip up is on the weekends. I allow myself Saturday and Sunday as cheat days (and have between 1800-2000 calories). Honestly without a cheat day, I wouldn't be able to realistically stick with the eating.

Maybe I should cut it back from the whole weekend to just one cheat day and see what happens.

Any other suggestions from you weight loss machines out there??

This weekend at the grocery store - I did induge myself. I typically try to catch breakfast food items on sale or to figure out what items are the cheapest.

Instead, I bought a box of bran flakes just because I was craving them.

$1.99 for a box of Kroger Bran Flakes. I'm such a rebel!

For weight loss encouragement, head on over to the Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans. I'm sure some of those ladies will have incredible losses for the week.

April 07, 2009

Thankful

I know the upcoming holiday is Easter and not Thanksgiving, but thinking about the sacrifice Jesus made for us all makes very thankful for my blessings.

*Salvation
Its what Easter is all about.

*my hardworking husband
I don't know how he does that all that does. say an extra prayer for him today, he's working on an important project.

*the beautiful mountains in my areaThis morning, on my drive to work, the mountains were covered in snow.

*familyI have great parents, a wonderful sister & BIL, and of course the princess and little man.

*my in-lawsThey love me as if I was their own - I couldn't ask for better in-laws.

*my job/benefitsThe health insurance is incredibly, not to mention free use of the gym and getting paid to work out!

*good healthI have my share of complaints, but I'm blessed that they are nothing major.

*a love of readingI started another book last night...and am half way through it already. I think I might be addicted.

*the ability to accomplish life long goalsNot only have I completed my bucket list, I've hiked the tallest mountains...well in this area at least.

Here's a view from the top of Mt. LeConte - 3rd highest peak in the state of Tennessee. Never mind the bulky layers, it was October and cold! (Random fact - My parents and I hiked Mt. LeConte the day after Mr. Right and I met for the first time.)

April 06, 2009

The Visitation

I had one goal in mind this weekend - chill out and read. Next up on my list was The Visitation by Frank Peretti.. Since its a 500+ page book (and I'm too much of a neat freak to completely abandon my Saturday cleaning schedule) I expected it to slow me down on my goal for the year, but I really enjoyed the last book of his I read so I wanted to give this one a try.

I had envisioned a relaxing evening Friday. At work, I had a major project, and my 5K training program had me running for 20 minutes without stopping! I wanted to be able to come home, poor a glass of wine, fill my jetted tub and relax.

Once I left the gym, I saw that I had several missed calls from Mr. Right - returning his call upset all the plans I had for that evening. A client of his had invited us out to the Dixie Stampede.

We had a great time, but I was only able to read about 15-20 minutes waiting on Mr. Right to get home. I figured Saturday would be perfect for it - I could have my housework finished by noon and I'd have all afternoon to read my book.

Only we slept until noon, and I was cleaning until around 5 Saturday afternoon. When I finally finished, Mr. Right was still in the garage piddling...um cleaning it out. I grabbed a chair from the front porch and sat outside reading for a while.

I kept dinner simple (chimichangas from the freezer with queso dip on top) and read for the remainder of the evening. I wanted to finish the book, but I had around 115 pages left and I just couldn't keep my eyes open any more.

Sunday's ritual is always church, lunch with my parents, then an afternoon nap. I forgot about the nap and finished off the book.

The book has left me with a new problem - it was so good, everything I pick up now pales in comparison.

Are yall reading anything really good right now? I'm about ready to put the library on my list of after work errands, so suggestions would be appreciated.

April 03, 2009

Answered prayer

My friend took her son to a neurosurgeon to discuss removing the the growth on his back. The doctor looked over everything and told my friend that surgery was not necessary.

The "growth" wasn't a tumor on his spine, and it definitely was not the cause of him having pains/losing feeling in his legs.

I'm not sure if God healed my friends son, or if the original dianosis was just wrong - either way God heard the prayers of His people asking for health for Dominic and peace of mind for his mother.

Praise the Lord!

And thanks for all your prayers.

April 02, 2009

Bloggy Book Review

First off – to clarify the prayer request from yesterday by “growth” I think they mean (but don’t want to say) tumor. They’re going to try surgery to remove it, but that itself is dangerous. I’ll be sure to give an update as soon as we have more information.

I’m skipping Weigh-in Wednesday. I felt skinny on the way to work, then got on the scales and didn’t like what I saw. I’m up 3 pounds from last week.

On to a goal I have a chance of actually reaching. I set a generic goal of “read more books” at the first of the year. Hard to define “more”, but I knew I wasn’t reading much so anything would be an improvement.

I've since modified the goal - I want to read 52 books this year, or the equivilant of one a week. I'm on pace to meet this goal right now.

One of the reasons I love not having cable TV is that instead of settling for a mediocre TV show on an obscure channel, I turn the TV off and read a wonderful story.

I’ve even been keeping track of the books I’ve read in the margins of my blog – they range from Chick-lit fluff to serious Christian non-fiction.

Right now I’m on a more serious book kick – and it all started with Graham Greene’s The Tenth Man. It’s a story about a group of prisoners in World War II, held captive by the Nazis. One night the German guards tell the men that in the morning 3 of them will die – only its up to the prisoners to pick which three.

They decide casting lots is the best way to choose. One of the three unlucky men is a wealthy lawyer. He offers his entire forture to the man who’ll take his place. After some consideration, a poor man takes him up on his offer. He has a mother and a sister to look after, and they could do well with that fortune.

I would highly recommend this book. I haven’t given anything major away, as most of the book deals with the fallout of the wealthy man’s choice. Once I finished that book, I found it hard to pick up a fluff. So since then I’ve been reading a weightier material.

Yesterday’s novel (I started and finished it the same day, but remember I was riding in a car for 2 hours) was The Pearl by John Steinbeck. For a piece of secular literature, I was amazed by the lesson God taught me.

Instead of praying for her son’s illness to be healed, the matriarch of this story prays for a pearl big enough to cover his medical care. This was a good read, so I won’t ruin the ending to prove my point. Steinbeck isn’t a hard read, and at only 117 pages it’s certainly not too long.

Why didn’t she pray specifically for what she wanted, instead of praying for a way that she could fix the problem? Because we’re afraid to give God total control. I can fix my problems if God would only give me _____ to help out.

But God doesn’t want to “help out”. He wants me to cast my cares on Him. And let Him fix them. Or not. He wants me to trust Him, and when we insist on fixing things ourselves, that’s not trust.

April 01, 2009

O Baby!

Is it horrible that I emailed some friends and told them I was pregnant?

Happy April Fools day everyone!

Rach over at In His Hands is hosting a baby picture party.

I'm not sure if I've shared this one with you guys, but its a favorite of mine.



In this picture I'm 6 weeks old and well on my way to my first diet.

My aunt lives in Tampa, and my parents wanted to take my sister to Disney. They dropped me off with my aunt and headed out for the day.

Aunt Ann told me this story this past year. She said I cried for the first part of the day, so much so that her neighbor came over to check on us. The neighbor told her I was hungry and to give me something soft, like a banana to eat.

So she did, and I was quiet the rest of the day.

Only she worried that she'd done something that would kill me which was why I was so quiet.