fashion friday

Precious Polo
We all love a little Ralph Loren...especially when it is cheap. Ross and TJ Max always seem to have it.

Sister Love in Leather 
H&M faux leather jackets. $19-$49


I have a headache already

Well I made the journey up north. Just me, babes, Mo, and of course a whole lotta baggage. My other half is engaged with work activities and essential gardening. I always feel half complete when he isn't with me. Ugh, wine will have to do.

I've got nothing much to say except this will be another jam packed weekend of shopping, family, friends, unwanted gossip, too much food, rude comments and box wine.

Everytime I come up here, it changes. But I guess it isn't "it" that is changing so much- it is me. Mom and Dad's house gets colder and colder, landscapers now fill the cul-de-sac pruning every yard to perfection (I guess I never noticed them before), the traffic seems to get worse, the people not as friendly, the weather is definitely worse, but on the upside, Target is better than ever.

Have a fabulous weekend!



reshaping my life: week 5

OK, I finally got it back together after a week of fighting temptation. I clung to the same weight last week and today was down three more pounds. Officially down 49 pounds since baby...almost 10 months (with only five of those weeks & 15 lbs reading the book and making these changes.) 

I feel lighter - more than physically - because I have gone and am going about this health transformation in an entirely different way: slow and steady with God as my personal trainer. And a little extra hurrah for my husband who is also at his lowest weight since getting up there in age (sorry sweetie!). A family that eats healthy together, loses together!

We all know, because most of us have tried it, that diets fail. A friend of mine once said that "diet is DIE with a t." I had to laugh. Almost true. We don't feel good when we diet because we are cutting out the good stuff. And then we lose weight and go back to slowing eating normal again and before we know it, the eating habits are back as well as the weight. 

Let me remind you what I go by: "For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it received with thanksgiving..." (1 Tim. 4:4-5). 
I don't know about you, but I'm going with that one. God isn't telling me that I have to avoid pasta, chocolate or wine, but that I should take it, savor it and enjoy it with thanksgiving and in moderation.
I'm not counting calories, weighing food, not eating carbohydrates, not eating sugar, avoiding my glass of red...I have all of those things which makes this so much easier. Furthermore, I'm not forcing myself to exercise hard everyday. I just go with what I feel like doing whether it be a long, challenging run or an easier walk, bike or the day off. Exercise is essential to life, but again, in moderation so that you don't get tired and stop.

While I am making it sound easy, don't hold your breath. Practicing self-control and discipline is incredibly hard for me. Some people, like my husband, decide something and that's that. They don't budge a bit. I found that you have to slow down and listen to yourself. There is usually a fight taking place between "I really want to..." and "I really shouldn't..." in your head. If you are going to feel guilty later about eating that and if you think God will be disappointed, there is your answer.

If you have given yourself to God, you already know that EVERYTHING is easier. You take all those weights you are carrying around - the worry, stress, hurt...- and put them on God's shoulders. Ahh, it feels so much nicer and is what I mean about feeling "lighter." 

But after feeling the weights of life and guilt for giving into temptation this past week, I picked up Cameron's book again. I hadn't opened it at all that week. Obviously avoiding it...

I am always amazed how God works. I open the book to my next chapter entitled, "A House Swept Clean." It was a chapter about how Cameron, during a major climax in her walk of faith, found herself back at the snack drawer. 

I was gasping and laughing, kindly smacking my husband asleep next to me attempting to wake him up about my recent discovery. It was again like God wrote me a letter and said, "Hey, you are doing really good, but I'm going to push you to do better." 

Just when you think you are doing great, your weaknesses that still abound will be tested. When I read and re-read that chapter, I am not someone who allows failure for myself. Knowing that this was a test, I woke up and was back on my A game. 

We can't let those weaknesses get the best of us. Our balance of confidence is as delicate as walking on water. You can't lose the faith or you might sink.

"'Lord, if it's you,' Peter replied, 'tell me to come to you on the water.' 'Come,' he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, 'Lord, save me!' Immediately, Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. 'You of little faith,' he said, 'why did you doubt?'" (Matt. 14: 28-31)

"The rain came down and the streams rose and the winds blew and beat against the house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock..." (Matt. 7:25)

EXTRA TIDBIT: Get rid of all your clothes that are too big. This way, you can't fall back on your big momma jeans. It also gives you a reason to get new, smaller clothes. Although my shopping issues are another temptation and test for another blogging day...


squirrels and trees

A week after moving in, I went for a run. It was a sunny day and I was in such a chipper mood. Having yet not met any neighbors, I decided to duck into the garage of a house nearby whom was having a garage sale. His name is Grandpa Jerry, and boy was he excited to see a visitor. 

His garage sale was the strangest thing I had ever seen. Old collectibles for double or triple the price they should be sold for and some very interesting other items. Such as this. 
The very nice old man said he was "really popular in the area" with his tales and songs. He told me to come back later with my husband and he would have a "welcome to the neighborhood gift." 

So, we went back later that evening and received this CD. My husband and I chuckled at the titles, and it is unknown to me why I have waited this long to listen to it.

Introducing Track 1: Squirrels and Trees (rated PG-13) from Grandpa Jerry's Home Stories

PS: It wasn't long after that we discovered Grandpa Jerry is ALWAYS having a garage sale. Oh, I love this town.


taking lessons

My morning mother's Bible study takes place in the church's children Sunday school room. For the second time, I found myself glued to the dry erase board with a colorful and heart breaking list of child prayer requests. 

Please pray...
"That my dog can live at home and not the pound." 
"That Ian's family won't move away." 
"That Josh's dad finds a job." 
"That my grandpa's cancer is healed." 
"For everyone in Roseburg." 
"That my mom feels better." 
"That Evan's cancer goes away." 
"That we get a bigger house." 
"That I can see my dad soon." 
"That the world gets better." 
"That we can get a dog for me to play with." 
"That my mom can stay home with me." 
"That we don't have to move away." 
"For the families in Japan."

These are little elementary school children and they can pray better than I can. How humbling it is to see a little person's prayer and what is going on in their hearts. They aren't praying for a cool toy or trip to Disneyland (cough cough...done that), they are praying for things that I think they, as children, are oblivious to. Well, they aren't. 

It breaks my heart that they understand why mom can't stay home and play, but they want her to so badly. It breaks my heart that they understand that their friend or family member is sick and will die sometime in the near future because of it. And the most humbling is seeing that they are praying for their friends. 

Here I am praying for a new car and little 4-year-old Jesse wishes that everyone will pray for his friend who is sick with cancer. Crap. Jesse is more grown up than I am. And praying for the families in Japan? Darn...that one has escaped me a few weeks ago too.

As much as we want to shield our children from all the hurt and bad in the world, they know of it. Truth is, they can probably handle it better than us. It is clear they can pray better than the most of us. I don't know about you, but I'm taking lessons from them.

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