Welcome to My Blog

Time to get serious!

1. I need to lose the last 30 pounds to get to my goal weight.

2. I need to grow as an Independent Close To My Heart Consultant.

3. I need to start writing - prolifically

You are cordially invited to join me as I share my successes and obstacles, my thoughts and feelings, and my love of card making, scrapbooking and other crafty things.

I welcome your opinions, advice and inspiration.

Come ON! Let's GO!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Why I Scrapbook

I'll admit it. I am feeling in a funk today. Asking myself if there is something more than just waking up every morning, working as a "guest teacher," going to the gym and working out trying to get over a plateau. What am I doing wrong? Is it really just what I eat? Am I not giving enough effort? Daily questions, I continuously ask myself.

I like my job but I do get bored. I like working out. I like my new trainer but why is it that the fitter one gets the harder they have to work? Ouch!

Losing weight took a lot of learning to change my habits towards the life I really want. I am not there yet but I can honestly say - the past three years, I have felt like an onion...peeling the layers off one by one of bad habits and negative thoughts and replacing them with new ones and positive ones.

I am not there yet. I have more to learn and more to do and more layers of the onion to peel. But I'm getting there. I honestly have to say - I'm getting there.

I feel blessed to have this Guest Teacher long-term position as a Sped Resource Teacher. I love my kiddoes - even though I only have 3 on my caseload. I love my new trainer/s who are taking me farther in my workouts than I ever thought I could achieve.

And these past 30 days through the 30 Day Challenge by Megan Elizabeth. I have learned that I really want to encourage others and to be an inspiration and to help others be successful and to be there for them when they start to peel back the layers.

That is why I like to scrapbook so much and why I became a Close to My Heart consultant. Because as you peel back the layers - you can take your pictures from your past and share your story and EVERYBODY has a story to tell. And as you tell you your story through your pictures of your childhood, wedding, your children and grandchildren, friends you have made, places you have been, you find yourself smiling - even through the peeling of an onion - layer by layer. You begin to realize that you have been blessed beyond measure and the feeling of being in a funk fades away.

  I want to help people share their stories. So I am asking you if you read this - would you have a workshop in your home? I will come to you and show you how to share your story. And yep, I would even travel.


Monday, September 8, 2014

Monday and New Challenges

Monday, Monday - oh how fast the weekend doth quickly fly by.

Back to work again.

I tried a new blogger site - WordPress...but after trying it, I still prefer BlogSpot. It just seems more user friendly.

Starting on September 1st, I joined a 30 day Challenge by Megan Elizabeth from Above Rubies Studio. There are three areas of life that we are working on improving during this time – spiritual, health and growing our business. Getting the word out there about what we are doing. Sharing your stories. I read a quote today that said, "A picture without stories are memories lost." I really like that. In a nutshell it explains why I love to scrapbook. Thank you Cindy Cleaver (http://yourremarkablejourney2.com/2014/05/26/5-reasons-to-share-photos-on-facebook/)

This challenge is not getting easier. My goal during this challenge is to break a weight loss plateau and gain a few Close To My Heart customers and gain a few Team members. And right now - I'm beginning to feel like quitting. The excuses are rambling through my brain like a freight train full speed ahead...
Have you ever felt like quitting? Why am I working? Do I really need to work?  Why is it the more fit you become the harder you have to work out? I have a great husband who is an awesome provider. I could be satisfied with where I am at in my weight. But then I would never know if I could do it. And isn't that what Yoda says? "Do or do not - there is no try." The more I think about it - the answer is No - I don't want to quit!!!! (extra exclamation points for emphasis)  Quitting is the easy way out. I will get through this and come out on the other side - shining as bright as a diamond that started as a lump of coal.

Will challenges ever go away? Nope!
As Miley Cyrus sang - There's always going to be another mountain. I'm always going to want to make it move. It's not about how fast you get there. It's not about what's waiting on the other side. It's the climb....

And as Katy Perry sang - I am a champion and you're gonna hear me ROAR!!!

This week - I noticed the school's scrapbook is falling apart. I am going to ask the principal if she would mind if I fixed it up. That's what I do.

If you need any help with your photo's and preserving those memories or have a story to tell with your photos.... Let me know. Call me, message me, text me.

#keepgoing, #30daybyME, #scrapbooking, #ClosetoMyHeart

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

100 Positive Things About My Life Part I

Today, my fitness trainer gave me a challenge to write a list of 100 positive things about my life. I don't know if anyone has noticed but I have been kind of a Negative Nellie lately. Too many negative thoughts bounding through my brain, from David being in Afghanistan, the house going back into foreclosure, and whether or not I look "fat" in a tank top  - and it has led to some serious depressed moments.
Well, I am sorry. I didn't mean to cause anyone any discomfort if I have been too negative and I will take my fitness trainer up on this challenge and write this list of 100 Positive Things About My Life. (Feel free to skim - this may get boring).

See?! I did it again!!! Negativity!

Okay - here goes

1. David loves me (at least I think he does).
2. Jesus loves me (this I know)..
3. Jubilee my little Malti-Poo likes to curl up next to me when I am sad.
4. Journey, my little Chihuahua boy, likes to do the same
5. They cheer me up and I love them.
6. I can run now - before I couldn't.
7. I can swim now - before I didn't know how
8. I have lost 115 pounds to date
9. I only have 30 more pounds til I reach my goal weight.
10. I like avocados.
11. I love raw spinach!
12. I really really like protein smoothies with berries or cherries.
13. I have a really comfortable bed.
14. I have a roof over my head.
15. I have a car that runs - even though the engine light keeps coming on and going off.
16. I have a blender that works good.
17. I have a beautiful granddaughter.
18. I have a beautiful daughter-in-law who loves my baby boy.
19. I have two adult children that still live with me - which keeps me company when David is gone.
20. My kids living at home while David is gone keeps me from going "batty"
21. I have a lot of Vera Bradley stuff and what I don't have I can borrow from Kimberly.
22. I am creative.
23. I am really good at crocheting.
24. I have a lot of healthy food in my fridge.
25. I am learning how to budget my money and control my spending.
26. I have some really good friends on Facebook.
27. I have some really good friends in Colorado and Virginia and Arizona and Oklahoma and Florida and Missouri and all over... 
28. I have an awesome sister - who is also my best friend.
29. I have a great and Godly mother.
30. I have three brothers that care about me.

(Okay - this is getting harder)

31. I have my own scrapbook room
32. I have a lot of ideas to grow as an Independent Consultant with Close to My Heart (I just need to follow through with them).
33. I have a good job as a substitute that gives me flexibility so I can go to the gym and workout and lose this weight.
34. I have a really good fitness trainer - who has been there for me during some difficult times and has helped me through a lot (He will be missed)
35. I have a lot of good support at Lifetime - who will keep me on the straight and narrow after my fitness trainer moves.
36. I have a new touch screen laptop - which I like.
37. I am starting to figure out Windows 8.
38. I feel healthier now that I have ever felt in my life.
39. I do not have to use my emergency inhaler at all anymore.
40. I have not had to take allergy medication in over a year because I have not needed it.
41. David bought me a video camera for my birthday.
42. David bought me a Cricut Expression 2 for Christmas
43. I have made some new friends at the gym.
44. Elaine is my friend and my movie buddy.
45. I met Gloria yesterday at the gym - who has to walk with a cane. She asked me for my help and I was glad to be available to her. We sat and talked for over an hour. She is a retired school teacher of over 50 years. Who knew?
46. I live in America - which is still the land of the free and the home of the brave.
47. I have lived in Alaska, Missouri, Virginia, Iowa, Colorado, Arizona and Tennessee.
48. I have leadership capabilities - if I change my attitude
49. I can be an inspiration to others.
50. I have a desire to be a writer.

I am going to have to continue this in part 2.... This is not that easy.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Nutrition Challenge to Myself

So last night, after my pity party of having to be gluten, egg and dairy free, I got to thinking. How can I make this nutrition way of life more enjoyable? Food sensitivities has become an integral part of my life. Since finding out that I am sensitive/allergic to gluten, eggs, dairy, yeast, malt, bananas, carrots, asparagus, etc. and eliminating them from my diet, for the most part, I feel so much better. I do not have the digestive issues or asthma problems that I used to have .However,  I do have moments when I kind of stray from not having any food sensitivities and the same old problems flare up again. I have also found out that spiking my carbs and increasing my sugar intake can cause some major depression.

Who knew nutrition was so vital to our wellbeing? It affects everything...health - physically and mentally, performance, endurance, etc

So last night, after being less than perfect with my nutrition this weekend and feeling "blah" again...I got to thinking, how can I make this gluten free, egg free, dairy free way of life more enjoyable and bring back my happy self? Then I remembered this cookbook I had bought by Tammy Credicott called The Healthy Gluten-Free Life Cookbook ( 200 Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free and Soy Free recipes). The Cookbook I am Using She wrote the book because her husband had Celiac Disease. I decided that like Julia, in the movie From Julia to Julia - where she cooked all the recipes in Julia Childs cookbook - I would cook most of the recipes from this cookbook. (Some of them I can't yet...like Honey Glazed Carrots or Banana Bread - at least till I get to my goal weight - 30 more pounds - whoohoo!)

So I browsed through the book and chose a few recipes that I will make this week.
Blueberry Teff Scones
Mini Meatloaves
Holy Cow Short Ribs
and Balsamic Vingarette

Made a shopping list this afternoon and took myself off to King Soopers to find ingredients. What I couldn't find there I wound up getting at Whole Foods.
Came home and made the Blueberry Scones.  And did they ever turn out Deeeeeelicious!!!!

I love when I make a gluten free, egg free and dairy free recipe and it doesn't turn out taste free!
I am also really glad I had already invested in various types of gluten free flours. (I really recommend investing in gluten free flours if you are interested in gluten free baking and don't forget xanthan gum)  The only one I had to go buy was Teff flour - which is more of a grain - and loaded with protein.

The recipe made 12 scones. Me, JD and Kim tested one so I had 11 left - which I stuck in the freezer. In the morning, I will pop one out, put it in the microwave, add a dollop of my vanilla goats milk yogurt and cook two pieces of uncured bacon for my breakfast. Can't wait.

Anyways, for those of you who requested the recipe...here it is.

Teff Scones

Dry Ingredients
1 1/2 cups Teff Flour
1 cup Sorghum Flour
1 1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca flour
2 tsp xanathan gum
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp sea salt

Wet Ingredients
1 c coconut oil melted
3/4 c organic evaporated cane juice or 1/2 c honey or pure maple syrup
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 c coconut milk or other nondairy milk of choice (I used almond milk)

Add in
2 c frozen fruit of choice (I used blueberries)

1. Whisk together dry ingredients
2. In a stand mixer, (I used my Kitchen Aid), mix oil and sugar together, add the vanilla
3. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the coconut milk to the sugar/oil mixture until off the dry ingredients and milk have been used. Mix well. The dough will be very thick, but should be moist and hold together. If the dough is crumbly, add 1-2 Tbsp warm water and mix briefly.
4. Add 2 c frozen fruit of choice and mix briefly to incorporate. Don't mix too long or the fruit will break apart and your mixer will whine because the dough is so thick! You can also knead the fruit into the dough by hand.
5. Scoop dough into approximately 2 1/2 inch balls, or about the size of a baseball... and place on parchment lined cookie sheets.
6. Press down on dough balls firmly with palm of hand to flatten slightly, making approximately 3 1/2 - 4 inch discs. Press more frozen fruit into tops of scones if you see bare spots that need more yumminess. Lightly sprinkly organic evaporated cane juice over tops of dough discs.
7. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. When they are done, the edges should be ever so slightly browned and the center firm but giving to the touch.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Deborah Marie: Who Am I?

Deborah Marie: Who Am I?: What's on my mind? My identity. Since I started this weight loss journey over 2 years ago and have lost over 115 pounds and feel heal...

Who Am I?

What's on my mind?

My identity. Since I started this weight loss journey over 2 years ago and have lost over 115 pounds and feel healthier and more active than I have ever felt in my entire life.. I keep asking the question over and over again to myself - Who Am I now?

I have heard people say that the old Debbie is gone forever and now I am a "new Debbie". And then I have heard some people say bring back the "old Debbie"...the one that was happier. Well what do they want? Does it matter what they want? Was there something wrong with the old version of Debbie, besides the weight and the health problems? Why is the new version so much better? Am I not - still me?

For the past two and a half years exercise has become my life. I have gone from barely being able to walk on a treadmill to running a 5 mile race in Garden of the Gods, a 1/2 marathon relay and a few 5k's. I never thought I would ever be a runner - but I guess I can say I am. I don't have asthma anymore...(well, unless I bury my face in a cat's fur, then there may be a problem.) I have gone from working out three days a week to working out about 6 days a week and I beat myself up if I miss a workout or, heaven forbid, just feel like relaxing.

 Even my thoughts of food are changing. The fast food places and all you can eat buffets no longer hold the appeal they once did. I make treks to the store because I am out of almond milk to make my breakfast smoothies. I find that the healthier I eat - the more I want to eat healthy. And the anguish from the guilt I feel from eating out or eating a food sensitivity is sometimes overwhelming. The "old Debbie" would've said, "Fast food? Bring it on? Not just one but two." The "new Debbie" says, "Fast food? Gag!"

I still struggle with a lot though. When the numbers on the scales stop going down and start staying steady, the reinforcements of whether I am doing the "right" thing begins to considerably slacken and I begin to doubt myself. No one talks about the plateaus or the parts where you are left with "loose skin" and the feeling that the person you see in the mirror can't possibly be "you."

The "old Debbie" would've given up by now. The "new Debbie" is in this until she gets to her goal weight and then for the rest of her life - even it means having to stay gluten, dairy and egg free in order to stay healthy. The "new Debbie" is still a work in progress just like the "old Debbie" was. I am still the same Debbie. I am still me. I don't like pulling weeds. I still complain a lot. I still battle with negative thoughts. I still am very high strung. I don't like to sweat but it's not so bad. I still like to stay in bed all day writing and reading. My body still aches as much as ever. I am still creative and witty and love God and my friends and family. But I have learned what I can do and I have learned that I am never giving up!

I'm not where I want to be. I'm not what I 'm gonna be. But Thank God I'm not what or where I was.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Monday Musings: Last Weeks Revival Meeting

Last week, Friendship Assembly of God held revival meetings, from Sunday through Wednesday night. I was able to attend Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday night. The speaker was Wes Daughenbaugh. (I think I spelled that right). Sunday night was the night that I got the most "take away.". The sermon was about the 12 Concepts of Faith.

1) Every problem becomes a potential miracle.
2) Any problem, big or small, has grace mixed with it.
3) Never be afraid of external problems
4) God is Always in Control
5) Miracles are found
6) God has preplaced possibilities all around you.
7) The bigger the problem, the greater the grace and the the bigger the miracle.
8) When God gives you favor, you can obtain help from others.
9) Faith is served on a platter.
10) There is always a choice between faith and fear
11) A big pitcher can be filled with a lot of water.
12) No matter what God names, you only get as much as you claim.

What did I get from all that? Grumbling and complaining and having a bad attitude never solves any problems. God wants us to be problem solvers. When we have the right attitude, miracles can and will happen. There are two kinds of problems. Internal and external problems. When a problem happens we need to ask ourselves if it is happening because of a bad attitude, greediness, stress..some kind of inner turmoil. If it is we need to take care of the internal problem, then the external problem, which happens for our good, can be taken care of. I kept looking around for my nutritionist, because I could just hear her saying, "Debbie, control the controllables."

I could really relate this sermon to my weight loss journey. Many times, when I am not losing weight, it is because I have a bad attitude, becoming fearful or having an Eeyore attack...poor me, nobody cares, pity party attack. When I learn to control my bad attitude, I can usually pinpoint more accurately that I have not had enough water, or eaten enough protein or had too many carbs. I can then control the external problem and fix the situation and the weight starts to come off again. Off course, without the grace of God, there is no way possible I could have even attempted to have begun losing this weight. It truly is a miracle, one that I have sought for and worked for. I know that God wants us all to be healthy and I am claiming a complete get to my goal weight, weight loss.

Well...that's how I see it.