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, January 31, 2012

Week Four of Joy Dares (Counting 1,000 Gifts in 2012)

What a week! What a month! What a year! And its only just begun. Eating wise, I made it up to the Day 14 of my 30 days of no eating out and then I yielded to the stress and pressure that the news of a dearly departed loved one had brought and I ate out...along with husband and son. Was it a sign of weakness? I don't think so...our hearts were torn up with sadness at the news that Davids brother, who had been missing for 28 days, had passed away from a massive heart attack, and had finally been located at a morgue in El Paso, TX. Nobody ate much of anything on Saturday or Sunday...tears, anger, sadness does not create a healthy appetite..but by 8:00 at night we knew we needed to fuel our bodies...we must carry on a memory now of a friend, father, son, brother, cousin, uncle who will be treasured in our hearts and missed so very, very much.

It's hard to lose a loved one...what is about death that gets us so depressed and despondent? Is it the fact that we begin to reflect on the brevity of life, or how I spent my years? How will someone remember me? I can let the news of someone dying bring me down...it has tried to this week...the sadness and grief sometimes feels so overwhelming... or I can be grateful...Grateful that I had a chance to know this person, thankful for their influence in my life that helped to make me who I am today. A person passing leaves a big empty space in our hearts, which will remain void, until we too pass beyond the gates of earthly life into our spiritual life... I will miss my brother-in-law...his wit, his humour, his artistic renderings and writings, and his statuses on Facebook explaining to everyone how he made KartoffelSuppen...you could practically smell the aroma of it slowly simmering in the slow cooker. And until then Mark, I will remain grateful... and I will keep looking for those daily graces...cuz that's what its all about...

Day 22: one grace wrinkled, one grace smoothed, one grace unfolded

64: I look at David and notice the wrinkles around his eyes, his hair that is turning gray and I realize how much I love this man who has made my life complete.

65: I love the feel of clean sheets...the smoothness and the crispiness of getting between the top sheet and the fitted sheet right before bed...makes me thankful

66: I fluff out and unfold the blanket, straight from the dryer, the smell of Downy wafts upon the air as it settles over the bed... drawing me into a warm, restful, peaceful slumber...for this I am grateful.

Day 23: 3 Gifts Found in Christ

67: Salvation - John 3:16 - which gives us
68: that Blessed Hope of
69: Eternal Life

Day 24: 3 things blue

70: Smurfs
71: the blue sky which means a warm day
72: my new Ellie Blue Vera Bradley duffel bag

Day 25: one grace borrowed, one grace found, one grace inherited

73: Cricut cartridges that my dear friend has let me borrow and Cricut cartridges that I have let my friend borrow...it is good to have a friend like that
74: happened a long time ago...but I still remember it clearly...the time when I lost my keys and my dear friend helped me tear the house apart trying to find them...we finally prayed about it and the next day, I found them, in the closet, in the hood of my daughters coat...How did they get there?
75: my love for music, passed on to me by dear, precious Dad...

Day 26: a gift before 9 am, a gift before noon, a gift after dark

76: the sunrise

77: a phone call to my mother

78: the promise of dinner, cooked by a dear loving husband, of grilled chicken and veggies, becuase he knows how hungry I am after a workout and he's giving me such great support in this weight loss and getting in shape venture...

Day 27: 3 gifts that might never have been

79: Marks art

80: me - a survivor of bacterial meningitis for almost 10 years now

81: the free lunch we got at Chick-Fil-A because I made these cows using my Cricut machine
Day 28: 3 graces found in your friends

82: compassion
83: support
84: inspiration and motivation (oh well that was four)...I love my friends dearly

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Third Week of Joy Dare (Counting 1,000 Gifts in 2012)

I made it through 8 days of no eating out! Thanks to the support of family and friends who have helped get dinner done, helped do the shopping and didn't ask me to go anywhere. It hasn't been easy and it has been a stressful week of teaching at a middle school. I have gone through a few withdrawals, felt angry at times, felt sad at times, but always in the back of my head, knew that this is for my good. Heading into my second week of no eating out. The menu has been made, the shopping list written and the recipe cards filled out for whoever is cooking that night. Looking forward to a zucchini lasagna this week, where the zuchinni replaces the noodle.

Day 15 - one thing you wore, one thing you gave away, one thing you shared.

43. I wore a pair of underwear this week that went south...first day of sub teaching at a middle school, right in the middle of class, whoop! There they go! Made me grateful though... cuz I AM LOSING THIS WEIGHT!
44. I gave away some stuff for the thrift store. Thank you God for the ability to let stuff and junk go.
45. I shared a Cutie Orange with one of my students. I had already had one and had one left and I gave it to one of the students who doesn't get much time to eat lunch.

Day 16 - 3 ways you witnessed happiness today.

46. Seeing the scales go down another 2.8 pounds
47. Watching my dogs chase each other around as if they haven't a care in the world.
48. Watching the mom at the store interacting with her child...they were so wrapped up in each others love.

Day 17 - one gift that made you laugh, one gift that made you pray, one gift that made you quiet.

49. Jelly, Kims chihuahua, made me laugh, she went to jump on Kim's leg and totally missed and kept going.
50. When two of the students in the class I was teaching got into a fight. I prayed hard. These students are a gift...show them Dear Lord...your paths...the path of truth and peace...keep them safe.
51. Giving my all during a workout...

Day 18 - 3 Gifts from Gods Word

52. I will both lay me down in peace and sleep...for Thou Lord, only, makes me dwell in safety. Psalm 4:8
53. I will never leave you nor forsake you...
54.  Stop with those shouldas, woulda's and coulda's...you know where they come from and the devil will not win...He will not get the victory! Thanks Laurie for that reminder

Day 19 - A grace in the kitchen, a grace in the weather, a grace that might never have been.

55. My daughter cooking a great dinner of Pork Loin, with apples and onions, long grain wild rice and pan fried green beans.
56. The weather warmed up so nice this weekend...it gave the promise of spring.
57. If David had never gone to Germany, I never would have become good friends with Dani, I never would of heard about Lifetime Fitness, I never would have gotten the best fitness trainer ever....Alex Beeding

Day 20 - 3 gifts you saw only when you got close up

58. Dog noses
59. The price of a supplement I have been wanting to get...doesn't cost so much as I thought
60. My students were doing their work!

Day 21 - one thing in the sky, one thing from your memory, one thing thats ugly-beautiful

61. The three Air Force planes, I saw flying in the sky in formation, fascinating!
62. my dad... I miss him...oh, how I miss him
63. Me..."If there ever were dreams that were broken and shattered...those were my dreams at the start, and the hopes for lifes best, were the hopes that I harbored down deep in my heart...but my dreams turned to ashes, my castles all crumbled, my fortune fell to dust...so I wrapped it all in the rags of my life and I laid it at the cross... and now.... AND NOW....there's something beautiful...."

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Second Week of Joy Dares (Counting 1,000 gifts in 2012)

So the Broncos lost to the Patriots. Usually, I am not a big fan of football nor do I watch football very much or any other sports. I am, in fact, finally learning the difference between a touchdown and a home run... but this football game meant a lot. I had entered into a bet with my fitness trainer, Alex Beeding, which was if the Patriots won, I would give up eating out for one month. If the Broncos won, he would have to wear a Denver Broncos jersey all day to the gym and Tebow in front of all his TEAM classes. HA! That would've been fun to see... I don't think he is a big fan of the Broncos. Lucky for him - huh? Lucky for me? Eating out is a really bad habit of mine. I looked at my accounts tonight after I lost and figured that giving up eating out will save me about $500 a month. Wow! Anyways, Tebow might never know that the loss of this game was a "grace given by God" to me, which is one of my 1,000 grateful gifts as you will see later on if you keep reading...

Day Eight - light that caught you, a reflection that surprised you, a shadow that fell lovely
22.. The light of Gods love that caught me at 8 years olds when I first believed and at 14 when I surrendered my life to Him...
23. My reflection in the sliding glass door, which made the dog bark. Wow! Thats me?!
24. The shadow of the mountains at the end of the day

Day Nine - A gift in your hand, a gift that you walked by, a gift that you sat with
25. Holding a heart shaped Reeses Peanut Butter Cup in my hand and realizing that I don't need it, giving it to my husband and telling him that he could have my heart...
26. Walking by Otho's Cookies in the mall, which has the best cookies anywhere, and having the willpower to not stop.
27. Sitting with my friend, Laurie, at the gym the other night so I would not have to walk around the mall for 2 hours waiting for my daughter to get off work

Day Ten - a gift that's sour, a gift that's sweet, a gift that's Just Right
28. Lemons, they are sour, but they sure make my water taste good
29. Cupcakes, cant eat 'em but I like how they look
30. My children, a gift from God that is Just Right

Day Eleven - 3 yellow things that strike you as fresh mercy
31 - bananas
32 - sunshine
33 - rubber duckies

Day Twelve - something above you, something below you, something beside you
34 - angels watching over me
35 - my craft room in the basement of the house
36 - the love of my life, my hubby

Day Thirteen - 3 sounds you hear
37 - the fan blowing
38 - the dog burrowing under his blankets
39 - any minute now the sound of Dave snoring

Day Fourteen - 3 ways you glimpsed the startling grace of God
40 - the many friends and family who have reposted the news about Davids missing brother Mark
41 - The Broncos losing their game tonight because now I have to give up the habit of eating out, which will hopefully not only make me healthier but wealthier too
42 - through the eyes of a child

Saturday, January 7, 2012

My First Week of Joy Dares (Counting 1,000 gifts in 2012)

So this year besides the challenges from my fitness trainer, I decided to take the Joy Dare challenge (counting 1,000 gifts in 2012)...at the end of 366 days, if I consistently write down what I am grateful for...I will have 1,000 gifts. The link can be found here: http://www.aholyexperience.com/2012/01/the-1-habit-your-new-year-cant-do-without-giveaway/ if you are interested in doing it with me... I thought I would share my giftsfor which I'm grateful once a week on my blog...

Day One: 3 things about yourself you are grateful for
1. my health
2. the energy I have to get done the things I need to do - like workout
3. I'm Me!

Day Two: A gift outside, inside, on a plate
4. Outside, we have a VW Passat, Jeep Liberty, Ford Edge and a GMC Envoy and a Suburban in the driveway and they all run...which reminds me I have a great husband who knows how to keep them that way
5. Inside, there are nine dogs curled up on the couch...they may be annoying and noisy at times, but they all love me unconditionally
6. On a plate, I have a no-carb dinner, grilled chicken, steamed veggies and a salad, which will help me become healthier

Day Three: 3 lines you overheard that were graces
7. Alex Beeding - "you shouldn't even want that!"
8. Friend at the gym - "we were talking about you the other day...about how funny you are"
9. Ben - "I love you, Mom."

Day Four: One gift old, new and blue.
10. Old - the music box of the girl playing the piano that my Dad gave to me on my 16th birthday...to me it's priceless.
11. My sign from Kim this year at Christmas that says...Keep Calm and Have a Cupcake
12. My snuggly, warm Smurf blankie that my friend Bobbie Sue made me for my birthday...

Day Five: Something you're reading, you're making, you're seeing
13. The Carb Lovers Diet Book...there is hope that life does not have to be carbless
14. the afghan I am crocheting for my friends wedding...
15. My little Chihuahua boy lying at the foot of the bed, sound asleep...

Day Six: One thing in your bag, your fridge, your heart.
16. Apple Pie Dessert gum in my bag
17. Bags of salad mixes, baby spinach, hearts of romaine, broccoli and cauliflower in my fridge
18. I really want to do these ten challenges... and lose this weight in my heart.

Day Seven: 3 graces from people you love (or like a lot or just have a heapin dose of respect for).
19: all the prayers from many of my friends who are praying for Mark and that he will come home soon
20: that Alex Beeding may actually care... when he writes in my journal - "No eating out!!!!"
21: the hug I got from my husband tonight...wrapped in his arms...what could be better?