Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Online Classrooms and Ashford University (Sponsored Post)

Education is a topic that's very near and dear to my heart. You know, since I'm currently enrolled and all. Even though I took the non-traditional approach and didn't go back to college until I was 30 years old, it's a choice that I haven't regretted for a single moment. (Although, I would kindly appreciate someone pointing this out to me in a few weeks, when I'm in what I like to refer to as "The Homework Slave System").

Going back to college has opened the door to a whole list of possibilities. Not only career wise, but personally wise too. I don't do well in front of large groups of people, and college definitely forces you to learn how to talk to other people, especially if your interested in making good grades and passing your classes.The whole experience has forced me to do things that are out of my comfort zone on a daily basis. I've found myself forced to think in ways that I wouldn't have done otherwise. College has opened me up to a type of innocence by young adults who haven't had to face infertility, crazy in-laws, job loss and the other learning experiences that come with age.

When I began pursuing my options for returning to school, part of my desire to return was to be able to graduate and find a job that I love, not just one that pays the bills. I want to be excited about going to work each and every single day, instead of spending 8 hours wishing I was somewhere else. An online education opportunity, just like Ashford University paved the way for me to have that chance.

What's unique about Ashford University is that they provide extensive options for adults, like myself to go back to college and get a degree while still having the time to work a full time job and raise a family. Let's face it, technology advances so much each and every year that universities that aren't offering classes online being left in the dust, and because Ashford offers a program that you work into your schedule instead of working around, they are giving adults the opportunity to get the education that they have always wanted, that they have always dreamed of.

Even if you aren't interested in going back to college, watch the brief video. If nothing else, it will inspire you to see how the future is changing for many adults, and even fresh out of high school people too. Life works out in strange ways, because college at 30 sure wasn't on my to-do list. I figured that college would always be something I would do 'one day', a pipe dream.  Yet today, that dream is very much a part of my reality.

I spent 18 months at another online university earning my Associates degree, and I loved the online experience, and frankly if Ashford had been around back then, I would have definitely chosen their program! It's truly a wonderful option for someone who wants flexibility and a full time job while going to school.

Online classrooms are the way of the future. The technology at Ashford University is moving towards the future by allowing adults to realize their dreams and finally have an option that allows them to follow through. Online classrooms gave me the confidence to continue my education and helped to ensure that I could be successful both inside the classroom and outside as well.

If you had the chance to do something that you knew you couldn't fail at, would you try it?

What are you waiting for?

Disclaimer: This post has been sponsored by Ashford University, but all thoughts and opinions are completely my own.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Deciding it's a Gift and not a Burden

Our pastor at church is in the midst of a unique series called "Servolution". It's about learning to, and giving us opportunities to serve others. Part of what started this whole thing is a lemonade stand that our church family will be running during the South Plains Fair.

This past weekend, Pastor B discussed how to find your spiritual gifts. My husband elbowed me several times during some of the options.

Yet, as I sat there, my mind wondered, about what my gifts were.

See, I always wanted to do something that made a difference. Apparently I should have been more specific, and I've definitely picked the wrong major if I wanted a career that made a difference. Although, I did pick my career based on something that I love to do, that I enjoy, which makes me excited to sit through millions of hours of classes each semester. Can crazy be a gift?

So as Pastor B talked, I wondered what I'm good at.

I'm a nurturer by nature. I like to do things for other people. My friend Andrea that was diagnosed with cancer this year can agree to that. I've shared the wealth more often than not, that she probably gets tired of the text messages involving care packages for dinner, breakfast, and dessert. Although, I totally love sharing. It's nice to make a cake, and have someone enjoy the other half of it, instead of the creatures that roam the dumpster in the dead of night. I'd rather not think about those creatures, because they have beady little eyes, full of evil, and long twitchy tails, and they are just roaming the streets looking for tasty morsels.

Fabulous, now I'm not going to want to let my dogs out when it's dark tonight. Fan-freaking-tastic.

I like to listen to people talk. Not necessarily joining in, but just listening and observing. You learn a lot about people that way. Another of my friends, wiggles her hands when she is discussing something she would rather not be talking about. She rubs on her fingernails, and constantly moves her fingers. My husband, avoids eye contact. He looks down when he would rather not have the conversation with you or even glancing away while talking to you. My mother-in-law likes to dictate the flow of conversation. She likes the subject to change when she has nothing else to say about it, not necessarily when the rest of the group is ready to move on. So it makes me observant, and when something interests me in the conversation, I add to it. Or manage to say something that pisses someone off, depends on who's around and how much sarcasm I used. Super powers shouldn't get you in so much trouble, should they?

Back to Servolution. They were asking for volunteers, and frankly I miss church when we don't go. I never regret it. In fact, I have this amazing analogy that will probably have me skinned for making on my blog.

Church is like sex. Once I get there, I wonder why we don't go more often. Or why we don't have sex more often. Not while we are at church, but just in general. My husband goes to bed at 6pm. I have homework. You do the math. It's not easy to do either, but it's always worth it in the end.
Sorry John. Aunt D. My old youth minister's wife. Mom. Dad. Andrea.
 So volunteers. Well, they have this bible study at TTU on Thursday nights. So I thought, you know, maybe if I got to know some of the losers, underage hooligans, babies, youngins, fellow students, I might not feel like I'm all that much older than them. So because I had procrastinated, because let's face it, I'm not a people person. I don't like talking in front of crowds, or in front of small groups either. I don't like being put on the spot, even with people I know. So I hadn't emailed the guy in charge and told him that I would offer up my services. Just couldn't do it. So my husband drug me, by my hair, kicking and screaming to meet with the guy after church.
Here's how much I'm not a "people - person".
"Hi, I'm Abby Normal, and you don't know me, but I'm fantastic and you should."
Yep, totally said that. Still not sure why, but I was nervous, and I say goofy stuff. And that was just talking to him with no one but my husband as a witness. So I spewed out that I went back to school, blah blah blah, did he need help on Thursdays. All the while, praying he would say no. So apparently, the 30th, I'm serving pizza and bottles of water to college students, and trying not to vomit or say something goofy. It's going to be interesting to say the least. Will I regret doing it, probably not. But for the next 3 years, because that's probably how long it will take for me not to want to hurl before I walk in the door, I'll do it. Because, believe it or not, part of me would like to step out of my comfort zone.
The other part of me, well, she would like to find something that makes a difference. Not necessarily so that I can feel good about what I'm doing for someone else, but so that I can feel good about who I am again. Because somewhere along the way, I've lost that girl who wasn't afraid to take on the world. I've lost the girl who wanted her life to matter, not to someone else, but to myself. I'd like to find her, before I get older and have any regrets about what I could have done, if I'd only been less selfish, and less afraid of talking to strangers.

My mom should be so proud, apparently she nailed the "don't talk to strangers" lesson, since it still works on a 25, 29, 30, 32 year old.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Shabby Apple

I've always joked with John that I should have been born during the 70's. Simply because I like paisley, and some of the clothes that are coming back into fashion. Of course, I'm not a fan of the bell bottoms or flare jeans, but I'm short, and those just don't look right on me.

So when I got this email from Shabby Apple asking me to check out their stuff, I'm in love. I'm also broke now, but I'm in love and I'll look fantastic, so it's a win-win.

This dress. Oh, my. It's a wrap. It's a maxi dress. It's absolutely awesome.

This is a maxi too. I love the maxi's they are sooo comfortable. The knot at the top, gorgeous. Of course, because I'm short, I'll have to hem it up, but it's just so pretty, I couldn't resist.

I love the way this dress looks. It's fancy enough that I could wear it to church or a wedding and not feel over dressed or under dressed. It's just perfect. And it's a gorgeous shade of purple. Swoon.
The ruffles. The fact that it's modest and covers more than my panties. (Right now let's pause and imagine my husband cringing as he reads the word panties on the Internet, knowing I put them there.)
It's pink. It's perfect. It's so sad that summer's over. But next summer, I'm totally adding this to my collection of must have swimwear before I go on vacation.
I think my uterus just cried. Some lucky child I know is totally getting this for Christmas. Isn't it adorable. The best part - mom can't totally have a dress that matches. Awesome.

So, the best advice in the world is quickly grab your mouse and click over and check out their fantastic clothes. They have kids, women's, maternity (which is absolutely adorable, and they look oh, so comfy). They have gifts and all kinds of great stuff. So, start your Christmas shopping early. Or heck, start your "I need a new dress because I'm awesome" shopping now.
Don't worry honey, I didn't spend all of your "lease" fund money. Just most of it.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

8 Day Challenge - Day 3


Read at your own risk.

You've been warned.

Weight today. 068.0  +1.0

9:00 1 scoop, 1 tbsp PB2 powder, 8 oz soy milk. - I'm so stinking tired of these stupid shakes it's not even fun. I managed to drink more than half. Took the next drink, gag reflex kicked in, and I refused to barf. So I stopped drinking. Poured half down the drain.

10:45 1 cheese stick, 2 oz turkey lunch meat. 2 7/8 oz. Barely managed to eat that. Barely. Not sure what's up today. I think I'm having my 2nd day symptoms that most have complained about today. I feel like I've been thrown out in the street, ran over, and then they knew that I wasn't finished, so that back up and ran me over one more time for good measure.

12:30 Actual vegetables.

Salad. Amen.

Broccoli, cauliflower, spinach. I heart vegetables.  HEART!!! Made sure to eat some carbs, thought maybe that would make me feel less horrific. Had strawberries and watermelon, because it's good for you. And I thought maybe the sugar would help too. It tasted fantastic.
How my Tummy Feels Now!

2:30 Nope, still feel half way horrific. I'm exhausted, like I haven't slept in weeks again. I just got rid of this feeling and now I'm completely making myself have this feeling again.

4:00 I've had 20 oz of water today. I've usually had double that by this point in the day. Wondering if I can do this.

5:30 I'm throwing in the towel. By the time that dinner was ready, I ate 2 bites. Didn't want anymore. Sat down, figured up my calories for the day, and I had eaten 400 less than I had yesterday. 400 less. That would have made my total calories today, under 700.

I knew that going into this, it was going to be tough. I'm not a fan of protein shakes. Heck, I'm not a fan of shakes period. I can count on one hand how many shakes I've had in the last 3 years. There would be several fingers leftover. After gaining a pound this morning, probably because I didn't drink enough water yesterday, and waking up feeling awful, I knew that I could get through tomorrow, and Monday, but that Tuesday, well, lunch would have been the end. I wouldn't have drank the shake. I would have nuked a Lean Cuisine, and hoped for the best. I'm so, so, soooo tired of the shakes. I've never hated anything more in my life. At this point, I honestly don't even know if I could have drank the one tomorrow morning.

I'll admit, I figured that it would be easier than this. I didn't know that I couldn't handle the shakes, and it's not because they taste bad. Because with the PB2, and even the cocoa powder, cinnamon mixture from Thursday was fantastic. It's just the drinking in general. Some of my issues could be because of my issues with drinking in general, at this point I honestly don't know.

Right now, it's just not something that I can finish. Even thought I want too. Because I'm very, very disappointed. Very. I wanted to do this. It just might not be realistic for me to do it for 8 days. I might could spend Monday - Friday and be fine. And let's face it, gaining that pound this morning, didn't motivate me to stick with it at all. It made gagging those shakes down last night and this morning, so not worth it.

Right now, I don't know what the plan is. I ended up missing the protein only meal. Let's just say, lettuce, tomatoes and flour tortilla's were involved. I don't feel better, in fact at 7:30 on a Saturday, I have my pj's on and would totally like to go to bed. And sleep until noon tomorrow, or maybe even Monday.  I'm usually still going strong, and I've gotten up 2.5 hours earlier than I did today. I was in bed before 11 last night.

My advice to all of you thinking about doing this.

-Play with the shakes, figure out what you like with the options that you have in order to make the challenges more doable.

-Don't have issues with drinking anyway. If you have to force yourself to drink them and you aren't getting the water, it isn't going to work. You'll just end up feeling frustrated. And you'll end up with soft taco's for dinner.

-It's important to have a variety of protein. You don't realize how many oz you really have to eat until you have to eat them. You get sick of hard boiled eggs when you have to eat them every few days.

-Make sure you have a fantastic support system. If you have to cook for your family and watch them enjoy broccoli and you just get to eat the chicken, are you prepared to explain to the rest of them why your avoiding something that's fundamentally good for you.

Contrary to what you might want to think, you are doing a very, very low carb, diet. You will feel weird. If you can't live with the fact of how tired you are going to be (and I mean exhausted, like you haven't slept in 6 months) and still have to function, then don't attempt this challenge. For someone who doesn't eat a ton of carbs anyway, today has nearly killed me. And frankly another day like this under normal circumstances and I would have made an appointment to see the doctor. That's how "off" I feel today. Just remember, your results might be better, and you might have an easier time with it than I have. The best advice I can offer, is be prepared, and when you think you are prepared, prepare some more. I have a new respect for the people who have done this multiple times, because frankly, unless I get "stuck" at a weight again, I probably will not attempt another one.

Good luck to everyone who attempts to do this. I'm not completely giving up...yet. Ask me in the morning. If I can gag down the shakes, I might be on board again. If the scale were to show a 12 pound loss, I would be willing to gag down shakes and protein for a few more days.

Friday, August 17, 2012

8 Day Challenge - Day 2

Today's weight. 067.0  Change -3.4

I woke up with a slight headache this morning, but it eased up during my shower, and by 9:30 was gone. Quite sure it was allergy related, as we had rain overnight, and that's normal for me. Plus I stayed up a little later than I wanted (which I've done all week)I had the best of intentions of going to bed, but got a phone call about a possible new customer for one of the 4 brands that I sale, and ended up sending out a couple of emails instead. So I've gone to bed later than usual most of the week now. It was gone by the time I got to work, so I'm still quite sure that it was allergy related, because at that point, I hadn't had enough of anything to eat to get rid of it.  I've heard people mention that they have felt "weird" starting today, from the lack of carbs to the lack of...everything. Yet, I feel fine. I'm not tired, I'm not shaky or anything. I've wondered around the shop twice now, because I felt the need to burn off some energy.

7:45 1 scoop, 1 tbsp of PB2 chocolate version, 8 oz light vanilla soy milk. Shake, shake, shake!

9:34 - having a hard time drinking water (I struggle with drinking anyway). If I'm not thirsty I don't want to drink. So some days I don't drink more than 30 oz. I didn't hit 128 oz yesterday, but that's about what I average, but it's way, way above where I was 3 weeks ago, before my amazing supplements. I might have to start at 70 oz, and each week add more until I make that 128. It's not hard to hit 70 anymore. But maybe that would give me a chance to get my body used to it. I'm getting hungry. It's going to be a long hour.

10:00 - walked around our shop, and not quite as hungry. I think part of it was mental and part of it was that I needed to get up and burn off some energy. I spend most of my days sitting at a desk, but I try to make a lap through the building every couple of hours.

10:30 - 2 hard boiled eggs, cheese stick, 2 oz of mesquite smoked turkey lunch meat. 5 oz total. Yes, I weigh everything all together. It was 5oz on the dot.  Like yesterday, I'm hungry, but not starving. Cheated on the eggs. Seems that I either picked more filling foods than yesterday, because by the time I finished everything, I felt stuffed. Yesterday was perfect, today too much.

11:46 - new plan. Aiming for 80 oz of water from now on. Period. And before you all go sending me hate mail about how I need to hit the gallon mark. If I'm being honest here. There isn't anyway that I could make that today. As of this moment I've had exactly 8.45 oz for the day. I can't force myself to drink water that's just going to make me feel like I want to hurl. So. New plan. 80 oz this week. Adding 10 oz next week. I'll just have to do that until I get to the point that I can do 128 oz. On the days I go over, we will just consider it a bonus. Because in the next 10 minutes I need to have drank 30 oz. It's not going to happen. Thankfully. The good news is, that 80 oz is more than I could drink if I started this challenge when I got my stuff in the mail 3 weeks ago. It's hard when your not thirsty and you have to literally force it down. For those who dislike chicken livers, it would be like telling you that you had to eat 2 an hour every day. I know water is key. But I'm frustrated that I'm not anywhere close to making it.

1:00 - 1 scoop, 1 tbsp PB2 chocolate variety, 8 oz light vanilla soy milk. I wasn't all that hungry. I could have waited another 30 minutes or so, but that would have made me want dinner later, and I'm not sure my husband, who has been us since 2 am would appreciate that. So, I'm drinking a shake that I don't particularly want. I'm sure that by now you can tell I've found my favorite shake flavor for 8 day challenges. Someone suggested on yesterday's post about trying actual peanut butter, instead of the powder. I might give it a go, but probably not. It will be too hard to do once I start back to school. I'll need something that's easier, but I might try it. Although, the idea of creamy peanut butter makes me want to gag. I'm not a fan of creamy peanut butter, and in order to incorporate it, I would need to blend it, and like I said, that's not realistic once I start back to school. Because the first "glob" of peanut butter would be the end of that 8 day challenge and the beginning of a short love affair with a cheeseburger.

3:30 - 2 hamburger patties with 1 slice of cheese. 6 oz of protein. Not really hungry. But ate it anyway. Kinda like the shake for lunch. Other than that feeling pretty good. Except for the extreme boredom of a typical Friday at work. The only people who call or come in on Friday's are sales guys and telemarketers. It makes for a long day. Thank goodness for the internet, Kindles, and my addiction to pinterest. Like my morning snack, this ended up feeling like "too much". But once again, not really hungry. Yet yesterday didn't feel like enough. But maybe without being as hungry I can avoid my 10:30 snack tonight.

7:43 - 1 scoop, 1 tbsp PB2 chocolate. Tonight is typically date night in our house, so this was a hard switch. I usually enjoy something for dinner tonight (since today is also my weigh in day), that is fantastic and not all that awesome for losing weight. So I kinda missed that, but the results on the scale this morning made it some easier. I can't imagine how hard this would be if I were doing it and my husband was eating something fantastic too. So glad that he is doing this with me, it has made the past 2 days so much easier. I'm tired of the shakes. Starting to wonder if I can make it the rest of the week. I'm not feeling to good, stupid allergies, so I would imagine that's part of it. If my husband wasn't ready for his shake, I probably would have avoided mine for a few more hours, if I even had it.

9:00 - 2 flush. To help me flush. Too bad it won't help me pay my water bill. Good thing I'm saving toilet paper rolls for something I saw on pinterest for Halloween. With all the water, I should have a ton of the things by the middle of October.

10:19 - Tired. Tired of shakes. Ready for bed. A little hungry, so I'm going to eat a cheese stick and go to bed. Tomorrow will be better. Tomorrow WILL be better. I'm looking forward to the actual food and less shakes. I'm quite sure that those shakes are going to kill me. Well, that and the water too.

What I've learned today - Even though I'm doing this challenge (and today has been less of a challenge than yesterday, at least in hindsight), I still have to pay attention to my body. I know it better than whoever designed this challenge. Thus the reason for the late night snacks. If I wake up with a headache, I'll want a Diet Dr. Pepper, and a bacon, egg, cheese, and potato breakfast burrito. Which isn't good for me anyway. I've thought that perhaps I should up the protein amount on my snacks every day, but for this first challenge, I'm not going to change anything as far as those amounts go. I know my body, I know how I feel, and I know me a lot better than someone who doesn't walk around in my body. Because I know that what works for me, might not work for someone else. I also know that in order to stick with something, you have to make it livable for your lifestyle. Without school to work around, this challenge is going fine. But when I do my 2nd one in about 6 weeks, I'll have a full time course load, as well as a full time job to work around. Whatever I do can't add to the crazy that is my life, or I'd only make it through 2 days before caving. I also know that the next challenge I do, I'll swap out today's higher mid morning snack for day 1. And plan for less on day 2. Then again. my allergies are being difficult today, and I usually don't have much of an appetite when that happens anyway.

Had to go get more soy milk, and it was tempting to have Subway for dinner. They were baking bread and it smelled like heaven. Little fluffy pillows from heaven. And popcorn. Bastards. So make sure that you don't go to the store for anything. It was, REALLY, REALLY tempting to have Subway for dinner, and if my husband hadn't been with me, I probably would have caved. I'm just hoping my results the end of the week are going to be worth this. I know they will be great, but I just need a little kick of motivation. Hopefully going to bed at a decent hour and sleeping in will help with that.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

8 Day Challenge - Day 1

Here's my beginning stats:
Weight: your kidding right - here's the last few digits 70.4 (this is the lowest I've been in 2 years, down another pound from last week)
waist - 59"
Right thigh - 30.5
Left thigh - 31.5
Right Arm - 17.75
Left Arm - 18

I have pictures that I took, that I'll post after the challenge. I made sure to wear some snugger fitting clothes so that I could not only see (hopefully) a difference, but I knew I would notice a difference in how they fit.
6:45 is way to early for my alarm to go off. After a couple of snoozes and 15 minutes later I'm up, the dogs are out and I'm headed to the kitchen for 2 Xyng and a 16.9 oz bottle of water. I might drown before the day is over with. Drinking isn't my strong suit.

7:50 1 scoop of Lean mean protein shake powder, 1 tsp cocoa powder, because chocolate for breakfast, count me in! 8 oz light vanilla soy milk. Taste test. Can't really taste the chocolate (so I thought) so I added a couple of sprinkles of cinnamon to the top. Headed to work. Very vanilla still, might have to try plain soy milk. Although it tastes like vanilla bean ice cream.

8:00 found the chocolate. Now my shake totally tastes like the frosting on this cinnamon chocolate cake that my mom made when I was a kid. Freaking fantastic.

9:45. I'm hungry. Good thing, my snack time is coming up soon, otherwise I wouldn't make it too lunch. Might not be a bad idea to try 2 scoops of protein tomorrow. About to force myself to drink the rest of the bottle of water I started out with this morning.

10:30- Amazingly so, the majority of the bottle of water helped with being hungry.  I was still hungry before the snack, but not starving. I was worried that this wasn't going to be enough food, and that I would eat it and still be starving. I forced myself to eat slowly, and to take my time. I tried to focus on what I was eating instead of working, but that didn't work out too well. 2 hard boiled eggs and a cheese stick, plus an ounce of beef . Based on weight in oz, 5 oz of protein. I cheated on it. And slightly salted and peppered the egg. I'm not hungry. Now I'm off to drink lots of water. So far I've had 16.9oz + some. Not near enough to make 128oz for the day without spending half of my night getting up and going to the bathroom.

12:53 - 1 scoop, 8 oz light vanilla soy milk, 2 tbsp PB2 powder, the chocolate flavored kind. Holy, mother of shakes, batman. I'm quite sure I'm drinking a Reese's peanut butter cup. I'm hoping that no one will notice when I start licking the cup clean. This is freaking fantastic. FANTASTIC. Guess what I'm having for dinner? Of course that would mean that I had chocolate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Oh darn. That's a shame. :) I'm not sure I can every drink another shake any other way ever again. Ever. Still working on the water. I've had about 40 oz of water. Aiming to finish my 50.7 oz bottle before 5, as well as start on another one.

3:30 - 1 hamburger patty with colby pepper jack cheese. 4.5 oz of protein. I was still a little hungry so I had 1 oz of beef jerky. 

3:45 - make the water stop. Gah, I don't have this much trouble drinking on the weekends, but get to work, and its a royal pain. I'm quite sure that there is a little hamster in my body that is sandbagging the doors, and has on a life jacket and life preserve.
6:50 - 2 scoops of lean, 2 tbsp of PB2 - chocolate baby! 16 oz of soy milk. It's weird to be drinking my dinner. I'd feel better if I had just had dental work done. I'm having flash backs to my high school years and braces. As I'm typing this, there is still about 1/4 of the shake left. I was afraid of starving, but 2 scoops is way, way too much food. Way, way, way too much. So my ideas of a 2nd scoop in the morning are a no go. Plus I still have about a bajillion ounces of water to drink. I ended up pouring about 1/8 - 1/4 of a cup down the drain. I just couldn't finish it.

7:40 - I hope our water bill doesn't go up from all the flushing. Shouldn't have waited this late on the water. Oops. Hopefully I'll get better about water. I keep hoping I'll get used to it and not have to force myself to drink.

9:00 - 1 flush down.

10:35 - Headed to bed. I'm feeling good. Tired, but that's to be expected. I'm also slightly hungry. So I'm going to grab a cheese stick (so I don't wake up with a headache) and head to bed. It will be an extra 3/4 of an ounce of protein, but I've got to be realistic if I'm going to make it 8 days. I can't starve, or this will be my first, and my last challenge. That's why I like Weight Watchers so much, no food is off limits, and if you make smart choices, you don't starve to death.

Day 1 is in the books.

What I've learned: Even though I'm worried about being hungry, I'm really not. 2 scoops of lean is just too much. Won't make that mistake again. I've heard of people feeling weird from the lack of carbs, but I'm fine. I haven't felt any different than normal. Although the later it gets the more tired I am, but not sure if that's from staying up too late last night or from today's activities. Like I said, I'm also a little hungry, and simply because I don't want to wake up starving and miserable, I'm going to eat something. I've got my shakes ready. I've got my snacks ready. Day 2 is going to be a piece of shake!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

And in the Beginning...There was Fat

In the beginning there was fat.

Hopefully the ending will be different.

No, I know the ending will be different.

A few months ago another blog that I follow shared how she was losing some serious weight, without extreme unhealthy measures. Since I've fought the fat battle most of my life, and lost, I thought I would give this a try. I caved. I ordered, I waited, I prayed. Then I got the stuff, and I half assed it.

I've been stuck at the same weight for a few months. I've maintained this weight in the past for a couple of years. Just wouldn't budge. I tried everything to get the scale to move, and it just wouldn't happen.

Then in April I decided that I could lose the weight. If I could go back to college and be successful at that, then I could add losing weight to the mix too. So I joined Weight Watchers. I counted points until I'm quite sure I looked at everything with a points value. My car, the dog, stamps, gummy bears. I counted it all. Then I hit those blasted numbers and the scale has spent the last two months laughing at me.

Tomorrow, I'm going to wipe that smile off it's face. I'm starting my first 8 day challenge. The beauty of that is that my husband is going to take that little journey with me. He's lost 60ish pounds since February (boys suck) just by starting a new, very physical job. I'm slightly jealous. I would even go to work with him if I wouldn't kill over within an hour. But I would die. So he gets to do all the hard work and I'll keep my cushy office job with very little pay.

So between Thursday and next Friday, I'll post every single day. Because I want to be able to share with some other people who are in a group with me, following this amazing program. I want those who are on the fence about how they can't do it, or how they don't want to do it to take a walk in my shoes and see, that if someone with my crazy schedule can make it work, that they can too. I want them to have someone telling them what they ate and what they drank to give them some ideas, and some support. Because let's face it, losing weight is hard. You get in a rut and you don't know how to get out.

So to my regular readers, things are going to be interesting for the next week, and I'll make sure to post something good next week for you besides weight loss. But for the rest of you, it will literally be like your following me around. I'll post everything. I'll even post updates on Twitter, so you can follow along there.

If, you have questions, or want more information, use the contact tab and shoot me an email. I'd be happy to share how in just 3 short weeks, this program is changing my life.

Tomorrow is the beginning. The beginning to kicking fatties butt.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Planned Leap of Faith

Several days ago a friend on Facebook posted something that I’ve pondered about for days.

She took the scenic route home one night, and had her two kids in the car. They approached a red light, and saw a homeless man holding a sign asking for money for McDonald’s or Wendy’s because he was hungry and homeless. Her oldest boy (who is 3-4 years old) wanted her to stop and get the guy some food. He kept pointing out the McDonald’s and Wendy’s locations where she could stop. However, (no judgement here) she didn’t stop. She told her kids that their dad was waiting and maybe some other time.

I can relate. A lot.

She continued on about why didn’t she trust.

I can relate. A lot.

I’ve pondered over what she wrote for days. I’ve thought about the last few months, heck the last year of my life and wondered when I quit trusting. I’m not talking about not trusting that the homeless guy wouldn’t hurt me or my family, but when did I quit trusting myself, my husband, my marriage, my relationships.

I’m hard on myself. Really hard. I like things to go according to plan. I like things to be perfect. I like to know the future and make sure that something is doable. I even like to plan out all the steps to my leaps of faith. But that makes it not a leap, but just the next step. Yet, when the tiniest thing screws up my “plans” my world is completely turned upside down. There is no room for error, or even to recover, so that tiny pebble in the road, suddenly becomes a boulder, and everything else seems more difficult and more complicated than it should have been.

A few days ago we purchased a new car. After prodding from a friend the night before not to worry so much and think about things so much, I told my husband to just do it. He was rather surprised. Okay, scared the hell out of him is probably a little more accurate. He was so confused by the very sudden, change of heart. He was right, we needed to do it. We needed to quit relying on my parents and their patience with the use of their additional car. So, thankfully I didn’t freak out while he was signing the papers, but the payments were a little more than I wanted. Only $40 more, but still. When we had the total amount of our monthly payment, I added it up with our rent and our truck payment. I very nearly cried. It’s a lot of money. It’s a lot of money when you are terrified that something will go wrong. It’s-a-lot-of-money-when-you-only-work-part-time-and-if-your-husband-loses-his-job-you-will-be-homeless. So I might have freaked out after we left the dealership. I said might have. However, if questioned and even tortured I will deny everything.

When did I stop trusting? Why didn’t I have faith that things would be okay? That God would provide for us? He most certainly did when my husband lost his job in January. We didn’t have to borrow money from anyone to pay the bills. We got by. I was trying to focus on school and not worry so much, and things turned out fine. In fact I told my husband when he was offered one job that the pay was slightly above minimum wage, that if he wanted to hold out and see what happened, he could. I’d like to find that girl. I’m quite sure she only shows up in periods of sleep deprivation.

I’ve always hesitated. I’ve always planned. It takes months of planning for something most people can decide in a few minutes.

I am scared.

I listen to the doubts that creep into my mind of all the possibilities and of all the things that can go wrong.

At what point did that become okay? What about all the other things I make excuses about because I’m scared of what the outcome might be? That list is long. What about all the things I'm afraid to try to attempt because I'm scared of the outcome? That list is very, very long. Which is unfortunate, not only for myself but for John, and for our friends and our family, because they are missing out on the wonderful experiences that I'm too afraid to follow through with.

There is so much going on in my life that I’m terrified of failing. There are so many things that I want the outcome to be good. No better than good, amazing, magnificent. Yet, those excuses keep popping back up.

I’m never good enough. I’ll never graduate. I’ll never pass all my classes. I won’t lose the weight this time either. I won’t be enough. I’ll let my friend Andrea down. I’ll let my friend Amber down. I’ll say the wrong thing. I’ll do the wrong thing. I'll never measure up. I'll never be enough.

I won’t trust.

Them, or myself or anything.

Sure, I’m still terrified, I still want to “what if” every single decision to death. Yet, if I don’t trust myself, my husband, my friends, or my family – then what am I doing? Other than adding gray to my hair and wrinkles to my face, which my husband does an amazing job of pointing out.

There are a variety of things that have nagged me for months. That have tried to push me into taking that leap of faith. Yet, I've resisted. Even the sermon at church yesterday was motivated at me following through and trusting myself. Talk about divine intervention.

So I'm trying. I'm trying not to think every single situation to death. I'm trying not to let that little voice that tells me I can't, or that I'm not good enough just ramble. Then when I get so tired of it, I'm stuff a bandanna in her mouth and sending her to the corner.

Borrowed from Mt. Hope Chronicles

I need to learn how to be a good friend, a good wife, a good daughter. To stop hesitating. To stop second guessing. To stop letting the excuses control my thoughts and my actions. Before I realize that it’s too late.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...