Carbs? Who needs em? ~By: Steph

20160614_094639This is me enjoying my protein iced coffee. Yummy, better than any toast or crackers. Carbs, who needs carbs?  Not me.  I do daycare.  No stress eating there. Easy peasy. See…I didn’t get struck by lightening! Also, remind me not to drink in public.  Does my forehead always wrinkle up like that when I drink??? Why has this never been pointed out to me before.

Okay, I love my job.  I love my kiddos.  They make me laugh, keep me on my toes, drive me crazy and at times exhaust me.  Making meals for mini noise makers and serving up snacks, is tough when you’re trying to eat right and not graze.  Maybe if I fed them seafood, liver, lima beans, and canned peas, I wouldn’t be tempted to sample a bite or two. I totally see the kids responding well to that menu. Anyhow, today, that is my struggle.  I’m not hungry, I’m truly not.  I just want to eat.  Instead here I am blogging during naptime to keep myself from messing up my day!

Have you ever noticed that your kids push your limits right when you are on the brink of snapping?  The second day without carbs is definitely NOT the morning to push your mother!  Kids got up this morning, ran on time, left for their summer program. Then 5 mins. later I get the call. My son is asking me to load the daycare kids up and bring him his glasses that he forgot.  My response was, “I can’t I have kids here and 2 more on the way.  I need to be home for drop offs.” I was calm. I was nice.  I told him that they could walk back and grab them since he was still close to home.  Yeah. Then he did it.  “Thanks Mom, never mind I guess I don’t need them even though I can’t see anything in class without them.”, was his response. Right before he hung up on me.  Whew…deep calming breaths.  Who pays for the phone you just hung up on me with? Who do you think you are being a smart@$$ with me when I am not the one who left their glasses at home?  Where are you going to live when I kick your little butt out?  Let’s hear you say, “never mind I guess I don’t need them”, when I set all your video games on fire with a can of Aqua Net and a bbq lighter! Hmm…I think I was justified in my irritation.  Maybe, maybe not.  However, I also may have been a tad more fired up than I would have been if I’d had a mouthful of crackers.  By the way, he’s grounded from his phone until he learns to be respectful on it. Don’t fear, no bonfires and homeless son. GOOOOO MOM.  Wait, am I the only one cheering for myself?  Oh well.  His sister will think it’s a great plan.  Usually it’s her that’s grounded. My little angels.

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Yesterday went really well.  I ate healthy and made good choices.  Scrambled egg and a small piece (about an ounce) of steak for breakfast. Celery, jalapeno artichoke dip, grape tomatoes, and turkey for lunch. 1/2 cup of watermelon for snack.  Grilled chicken salad for dinner. Frozen PbFit and banana Triple Zero bites for evening snack. 16 cups of water to round out the day.

Still trying to decide on a dinner tonight but, 2 protein coffee shakes, the rest of my salad from last nights dinner, some watermelon and maybe another yogurt later, are on today’s menu.

20160614_075805Day 3 is usually my rough day when I’m kicking the empty carbs.  Wish me luck tomorrow.  If you pray, I’d appreciate a prayer for strength.  I know this sounds awful but, I’m dreading Bible study on Thursday.  They always include a dessert.  I’m usually good and bring my own low carb dessert.  I’m not even in a good spot for a low carb, sugar free, dessert at this point.  I need a couple of weeks without that type of food before I can reintroduce healthier versions of them.

I suppose I should go eat my salad while these kiddos are sleeping.  If I don’t I’ll be holding babies while trying to shove lettuce in my mouth, while they try to snatch it out!

Hugs to you all and here’s to fresh starts and people who understand.

 

 

 

 

 

Hard Times? Yep…I’m back again. ~By: Steph

 

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I hate that I come back here when I’m struggling.  I guess this blog is my subconscious pep talk. Today is day one of back on the wagon.  Repeat after me…Stephanie Kathleen, empty carbs ARE NOT YOUR FRIEND!  Thanks, I feel duly chastised.  I let them sneak in when my emotions are running high and they make me feel loved. Really?  Is that how I feel loved?  I have a Savior who died for me, a husband who honestly values me more than I often value myself, children who love me so much that they drive me insane…er…insaner???…that could be a word, a family who loves me and friends I can turn to.  Nope, every time I try to keep it all locked up and feed it carbs to keep it quiet.  The thing is, when that momentary emotional breakdown passes…I still keep eating carbs!

So, here I am once again telling you I screwed up and now I’m trying to make it all go away.  You don’t see that pile of nonsense I swept under the rug, do you?  The thing is, as well as I can put on the, “Nothings wrong here, nothing to see here, move along.” face.  That pile of nonsense is still there. The evidence is on the scale. Well the evidence is more on my thighs and tummy but, you catch my drift.  You can’t eat crappy foods and graze all day without consequences.  In this case, the consequences are 10 lbs I don’t want to hang out with.

I suppose the reason I keep coming back here to blog my failures, is to celebrate.  Why? Who celebrates their failures?  Me I guess.  If I’m back here blogging through my struggle, that means that I haven’t given in.  I haven’t thrown in the towel. I am determined to persevere and change my situation.  The day I decide to stop coming, “back again” and admitting my mistakes as I dust myself off, is the day I quit trying.  I pray that day never comes.  Maybe some of you will get tired of reading.  Maybe you will think, here we go again. Maybe that’s not what matters to me.  Maybe I do this so that I can help not only myself get back to my plan but, help the other people who have fallen and want to pick themselves up.  I know how alone you can feel and how you can be so abusive in your thoughts about yourself that you can’t fathom why anyone else values you at all.  You’re never alone.  My first stop is always God, then the people I’m closest to, and then it’s you.  Whoever may be reading this and needing to push through a hard moment will know that we have to keep fighting the fight, one day at a time.

It is 12:03 on day one, I am already sick of protein.  I want a damn cracker!  Hmm…have I mentioned I am crabby when I go off of carbs?  I know you’d never guess from my cheery typing. I have had egg, meat and then some more meat so far.  Looking forward to dinner.  I am making a, Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad.  I will use Greek yogurt with my ranch mix.  Grilled chicken breast, 1/2 slice of crumbled bacon, the big red tomato from my garden (I’m so excited!), a quarter of an avocado, and some lettuce and onion.  I love the idea of the lettuce, tomato and avocado.  I seriously can’t wait for them. I guess I CAN wait but, I don’t wanna. I also promise to be good and eat the chicken first. No really, pinkie swear!

I am currently on my third, 32 oz. cup of water today.  That is another thing I let slide when I’m eating poorly. I mean come on…if I filled up by drinking all of my water, where would my crackers go?  Just an FYI, Wheat Thins are a delicious, evil, member of the carb family. They seem sweet and innocent but, don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

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Isn’t she lovely? That’s a bad picture, it’s not her good side, the lighting was wrong, but, she’s absolutely perfect!!!

The weirdest thing about my “falling off the wagon” is that I LOVE healthy, fresh, foods.  I don’t know why I turn to packaged junk when I feel bad. I make delicious and healthy meals all of the time.  I love to experiment and find ways to lighten up dishes.  However, when I’m in carb mode I don’t even want to cook.

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Chicken “Nachos”

A couple of examples of things I have made lately. Chicken Nachos; 1 pound  grilled chunks of chicken breast with a chile spiced rub, 2 slices of crumbled bacon, 2 oz. of shredded sharp cheddar/Monterey Jack cheese, baked butternut squash cubes with a spice rub, and some green onion.  That was enough food for my husband and I to eat 2 meals.

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BBQ stuffed meatball and Caprese Salad in a steamed zucchini boat.

Simple half chicken, half lean beef meatballs basted with sf bbq sauce stuffed with a 1/4 oz cube of mozzarella cheese and wrapped in 1/3 slice of bacon, then baked.  Fresh mozz., grape tomatoes from the garden, fresh basil, and a little balsamic, served inside of a hallowed out and steamed zucchini half. 2 pounds of meat made 16 meatballs.

 

I am perfectly capable of feeding myself properly.  Why don’t I?

Hmm, I do want to point out that those meals were made weeks apart.  I don’t use bacon in every meal I prepare.  Says the lady making Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad, for dinner. 🙂

I end this with a plea to anyone who reads this.  This weekend there was a mass shooting in Florida.  No matter what your beliefs are, what your political affiliation, how you feel about people’s lifestyle choices, please be kind.  I have seen some of the ugliest and most hate filled rants on social media the past 24 hours. When did we become a country full of people who only feel compassion for others, IF THEY SHARE OUR BELIEFS?  It used to be, if you saw someone hurting you hurt for them, you didn’t judge them and spew your ugly hatred.  As a Christian I am so saddened that some of the hate flowing is being touted as, “in the name of God”.  Please realize that just because, some small sect is twisting God’s Word, are louder and more public, that doesn’t mean they speak for the majority. My heart hurts for those who lost partners, sons, daughters, friends, and loved ones.  My prayers are with them. Division will only make the wounds deeper.  If you pray, then please pray for those who are hurting and in need of comfort today.

You know you’ve raised em’ right when… ~By:Steph

21448388b155887fd5d72692cee4f539Hope you all enjoyed your Mother’s Day weekend.  I had a really nice weekend and it actually felt like a real weekend.  That doesn’t happen often.  Saturday we did some shopping and my husband took me to Ulta to ahem…grab a Mother’s Day gift for myself.  I did use the proper mom etiquette and tell the kids, “Thank you.” when I walked in with my gift.  Hey, at least I don’t have to sit around thinking, “Really? This is what they thought I’d like?” 😉  Don’t judge me… you know you’ve been there!

My eating has pretty much been right on track this past week. This is a nice change.  I decided to keep myself focused on Mother’s Day.  Saturday evening I made a Strawberry Cream Cheese Delight on an almond crust & a lemon cheesecake on that same almond crust.  Both low carb, both had no added sugars and both had really nice calorie counts of less than 200 cals per serving.  It always freaks me out when I read “low carb” recipes with 5000 calories per serving.  My Noodle and I cut up a ton of fruit and made a fruit plate for Mother’s Day and one for home.

I figured the kitchen was already messy from all that baking nonsense so I may as well try another recipe out.  I’m pretty glad I did.  I tried cloud bread.  For those of you who don’t know what it is, I will put a link.  I found one recipe that called for sour cream instead of cream cheese and decided that’s what I’d try.  I’d already blown through a lot of cream cheese by this time.  I was a little worried about the whipping of the egg whites but, no disasters occurred and we had stiff peaks! I am NOT a baker.  Too many rules, too many bowls and measuring cups, dirtied. All in all the cloud bread was a success and pretty tasty.  I do need to use a flat baking sheet next time rather than, the 15 year old misshapen one that I chose to use. Although, it would make for less interesting shapes. I’m willing to sacrifice my art. I expected these little breads to be pretty gross and not at all bread like.  I was very surprised.  They browned up nicely, had good flavor and had a mouth feel that was very similar to bread. http://pin.it/x2ChXmY

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Low Carb Cloud Bread Top and bottom views.

 

Sunday the Big Guy and I headed to church early, to serve.  We were actually on time. This may or may not have something to do with the fact that Noodle brought Wild Bee and Monster Boy with her later.  They walked into church with some very pretty flowers and on time.  I was a happy mama!  Don’t you love that book “Llama Llama mad at Mama?”  Oops…sidetracked.  My mom and I showed up at church looking like we were trying to be matchy-matchy.  Totally cool, right?  So, a lovely friend, insisted on snapping a picture.  My Mom-mom attended service, it’s always nice to have her visit the church.  Even had a surprise text from my Lucy who informed me that she and her Ricky were playing hookie from their church and visiting ours.  So I had a lot of people I love to pieces, worshiping in one building.

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Me and my Mommy

Headed over to my Mom’s with the food and decided that the girls needed to take a field trip to Ulta and browse the makeup.  Found some fun stuff  got our “free gift with purchase” which is why we went there in the first place and then headed to Dutch Bros. while the men folk bbq’d for us.  Dutch Bros. on a normal day is insane.  Dutch Bros. on Mother’s Day when moms get $1.00 drinks…COMPLETE AND UTTER INSANITY.  We did not help this situation by ordering 9 drinks while we were there.  WHAT? We had to be nice and take the guys something!  Headed back to Mom’s with my sf strawberry/coconut iced green tea and we seriously got out of there for only $18.00.  Plus they made one of our drinks twice and gave it to us with a smile and a “Happy Mother’s Day”!  WOO HOO, extra sf green tea for Mom and me!  Well, maybe…I’m pretty sure I drank them both. It’s good to get all your fluids in. I wasn’t selfish, I was health conscious!

After dinner which was delicious and full of some really healthy choices, we headed to the other room and did makeovers on my Mom and Mom-mom.  The girls and I had fun playing with makeup and they got pampered. End result gave us a very nice picture with 4 generations in it.  My Mom even put on her “fancy hair”!

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I have to say that by far the most interesting part of my Mother’s Day was my Monster Boy’s gift. A little background…my son hates to draw or color and has questionable handwriting.  When we got home on Sunday evening he pulled a paper out of his backpack.  I stared at it for a bit and then said, “Thank you, it’s beautiful.”  I was holding a very neatly handwritten paper with my name on it (spelled incorrectly), tulips drawn on it and colored. He smiles and says, “The teacher gave us time to make our moms a card.  I had my friend ‘A’ write it for me, ‘B’ draws cool things and I picked the design for him to draw and then, ‘C’ colored it because, she had colored pencils.”  I guess you know you’ve raised em’ right when they contract out your Mother’s Day gift in the 5th grade! My little CEO in the making. 😉

 

A fun weekend, had my dessert and stayed on track, got presents…I like presents, and spent time with my crazy butt family!  Wins all around 🙂

Do You Ever Ask Yourself, “Who am I?” ~By: Steph

Today I am in the zone.  Well, my own zone which is not for everyone.  I caught myself in the midst of doing something strange and thought, “Who does this stuff?” I know I’m quirky.  I know I come across as closed off until, you get to know me.  I know I have my struggles.  I know I’m a smart ass like my Papa before me.  I know that I’m a fairly decent wife…YES Big Guy I am! I know that I’m the Meanest Mom in Fresno (M.M.I.F.), just ask my Noodle. I know I am a child of God and that I’m incredibly blessed to be His.

What didn’t I know? Technically I knew these things but, never really thought much of them.  I’m weird, thrifty, totally irrational at times, overly emotional in good and bad ways, and I know that my mind often is like a canoe stuck in a whirlpool. I think in circles and often talk in them too.  Often during a conversation, the worst possible responses pop into my head at extremely inappropriate times and I have to shove them away. I’m pretty sure I get THAT from my Papa too.  He was the sort of guy who said things like, “You’re a good ole hefer.” to the lady who spent an hour dealing with us and hooking my electric account up. Leaving her giggling and blushing.  Anyone else who said it would have probably gotten punched in the nose!  I at least usually have the good sense to think but, not say these things. I’m not as adorable as Papa was so I’m pretty sure I’d get punched.

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Yesterday my Big Guy informed me that the container that grinds the Himalayan pink salt, had melted.  I checked the store for a salt grinder to transfer it to.  Totally refused to pay $12 for a new one.  This morning I was staring down that salt grinder and wishing it ill. Ten minutes later I had the electrical tape out and was “fixing” it.  Who tapes a salt grinder back together? Especially when it’s one of those cheapo ones that comes with the salt! Me, that’s who.  Hey, it matched!  You never would have noticed if I hadn’t pointed it out.  I’m fairly certain of that because, most of you wouldn’t have been in my kitchen.

I can not say that without saying this.  Today wasn’t my first rodeo with tape.  Two full years ago, Bailey our sweet little pit mix decided that she was going to help me decorate the house. She decided to eat the back off of BOTH leather end table/storage cubes. You guessed it.  I contemplated buying new ones and ended up breaking out the duct tape.  Taped the entire back of both of them and then to top off my awesome ingenuity…I spray painted the duct tape brown to match the cubes.  We still have them.  I still roll my eyes every time I see the fraying edges of that tape masterpiece.  The couch now has electrical tape on the back of it to close the seam in the leather that the daycare kids were dropping toys into.  I’m the kind of person who really wants new furniture but then I think, “It’s just going to look the same way as the old furniture if I allow the kids to even breathe by it.”  No Big Guy, that does not mean I don’t want to get new furniture! I would prefer it if the Furniture Fairy would drop off some indestructible, free, furniture one night.  Not holding my breath.

I am scatterbrained to the point that I think if you look hard enough you can see my brain jumping around.  In my mind there are always about 15,000 things running around.  Kind of like ants. No not like ants, they are pretty organized.  More like bees buzzing around a hive.  I am also busy.  Who isn’t though?  This is why, I will now confess that this blog was started TWO days ago.  So when I say that I taped the salt grinder, “this morning”, what I really mean is 2 days ago. If my blogs jump around, it’s partly due to the fact that I rarely write more than one paragraph at a time.  More like one paragraph an hour or, six hours, or 48 hours…whatever.

I come across as closed off because, I’m trying to take in all of my surroundings and still speak coherently.  I have a hard time with crowds, windows, background noise, or any other distraction that may be taking place during a conversation.  My co-crazy Becky, likes to shout, SQUIRREL, at me when this happens. I don’t mean to seem standoffish, it’s just that there are so many things happening and that makes it hard for me to focus.  Call it ADD, ADHD, Sensory Processing Disorder, whatever you want.  I call it life.  My Monster Boy was lucky enough to get this from me.

If you’ve ever read my blog you know the “struggles” I have.  I am pretty blessed that God helps me to manage them.  I did not say they are under control. If they were under control, they wouldn’t be struggles, Silly.

I’m over emotional.  Enough said or else, I’ll get mad and cry.

All in all, I like who I am.  That isn’t something I could have said a few years ago.  I am learning to embrace my quirks, my struggles, and my ability to live a joyful life, with them. I have my days, and sometimes they feel overwhelming but, I get through them.  I wouldn’t change them if it meant losing the lessons I’ve learned, the family I have, or my faith in God.

I hope you enjoy your quirks and embrace who you are and where you are.  It kind of stinks to always be looking for something better, or more “normal”, than who you are.

Hugs and go tape something up!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Am I Self Defeating? ~By: Steph

Hmm…I am not sure about you but, I am indignant, self righteous, self critical,judgemental. Not really sure why. Not really sure at who or what I am these things.  However, I am indeed indignant, self righteous,self critical, and judgemental.  Sound familiar?  If you’re honest I bet it does, at least to some degree.  I mean come on…Target restrooms, who bakes a wedding cake and who doesn’t, the presidential candidates, dogs with painted toenails, teens with saggy pants. I’m a bad motger/wife/dog owner because, my Monster Boy and Big Guy need a haircut, Noodle didn’t clean her bathroom, The Wild Bee could pass out and be lost for a year in her room and there’s no way I could find her under that pile of clothes on her floor, my bad dog is trying to kill the other dogs by dehydration, need I go on???

Do you ever just wake up and instead of thinking, “THANK YOU GOD, for being my Savior, for another day with my family, for forgiving my self righteous internal rantings, for allowing me to have healthy kids, for giving us a home to raise our family in and providing work for my incredible Big Guy and I.”?  You instead think…”WATCH OUT WORLD, I’m in a mood!”

I have been in a mood quite frequently, lately.  I think it has to do with the conscious decision I have made to focus on my subconscious attitude and thoughts.  It makes me mad! I am a crotchety, grouchy, 119 year old porcupine on the inside.  I am not the sweet (okay stop laughing), thoughtful, semi proper, mostly sane, people pleaser, that I often present myself as.  Come to think of it, that sort of kind of makes me a big stinking liar. So now, I just realized that I’m an indignant, self righteous, old porcupine, liar.  Well that’s great!

The end.

 

 

Yeah…you know I have way more nonsensical, rantings before this blog is complete.

I think I’ve mentioned a couple of dozen times, that our current message series at church is about changing our thinking to change our behaviors and thus, transforming our lives.  (UGHHHHHH…the pricelessness of realizing as I type this that tonight is Thursday and I DID NOT DO MY BIBLE STUDY!  Guess what I’ll be doing next?  I really don’t mind because, it’s a good study but, I don’t enjoy being so last minute and rushed.)  Who am I kidding? It’s daycare naptime and I will not be doing anything except tending to waking babies after (possibly during) this blog. There’s always the 15 minutes of free time between when the kiddos leave and I have to leave for church.  🙂

Anyway…I’m pretty much rambling today.  I know…you hadn’t even noticed but, it’s true.

I have a very negative internal dialogue.  I have put myself down before other people could do it for me, for as long as I can remember.  I have incredibly poor self esteem and not a whole lot of faith in my own abilities.  Yet, I totally believe in Christ’s ability to do all things.  So, don’t those things cancel each other out?  I mean, if I believe that Christ can do all things, and I also believe I am without worth or ability then, how does that work?  He chose me, I did not say, “Woo hoo, I’m going to just run out and believe in Jesus, after spending my life being pretty hatefully against the idea of “religion.” Nope, He pretty much reeled me in, kicking and screaming.  I had no desire to “find God” but, apparently and I am so grateful for this, He had a desire for me. If I believe the God of the Universe chose me, then how do I think that I am so lacking? He makes all things new, He makes all things beautiful…well except for me.  Is that how this works? I’m the ONE exception to the rule?  Pretty big ego I have there. Right?

Focusing on my internal rantings is like holding a very dirty mirror up in front of myself.  I think that in some ways I want to be all of the ugly, hateful, thoughts that I have about myself.  It’s comfortable. It’s the home where I’ve lived for so long that I have become a part of the structure. I want to feel bad about things, about myself. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this.  We are surrounded with negativity. Righteous indignation. Moral indignation. Sexual orientation indignation. Racial indignation.  Short people indignation.  Fat people indignation.  Indignation at those who are not indignantly inclined. We almost feel good when we are mad at the waitress who dared forget the lemon in our water, the guy who cut us off when we are so obviously in more of a hurry than him, the parent who takes 27 extra seconds saying goodbye to their kid and holding up the drop off line at school.  Now take all of those feelings and multiply them by about 1,010. That gives you about the level of indignation I feel at myself on a regular basis.  I am fairly certain I am not alone in feeling like the person staring back at me from that toothpaste splattered mirror is not so great.  I really need to clean that mirror.

The worst part of all of this is that I cool down and I realize I’m being ridiculous for being mad or hateful to those other people.  I don’t let up on myself.  I don’t say, “Hey, she’s okay.  Maybe she was just having a bad day. Look at how hard she’s trying. There’s no reason to be angry with her. She’s pretty okay for the most part.”  I never say those things about myself.  Almost as if I am the worst of the worst people in the universe. Why do I think that my own vision of what I am is more accurate than God’s?  He knows things about me that I will never realize about myself. He created me and He loves me.  Am I a better judge of character than Him? Pretty sure I’m not.  I have demonstrated questionable judgement in the past.  Perms, big poofy bangs, acid washed jeans, 18 layers of mascara, and white high top aerobic shoes with Velcro. Oh crap…I demonstrated all of those 7 days a week for about the entire 4 years of high school!

Changing my mindset is something I’ve written about often.  It’s something I have thought about often.  I just really never took the time to pay attention to what was going on in my head.  I would lock on to one specific thing and it would get all of my attention.  At least until I forgot about it.  This time I am trying to stay vigilant and pray about the many things I catch myself thinking. My plan is to start writing down the negatives that go through my head each day.  That plan has been in place for about 2 weeks.  It’s a definite plan. I plan on implementing this plan.  That’s the plan. Well…at least I didn’t lie to those of you in Blog Land and say I already started on the plan!

Here’s an example of what I caught myself doing on Sunday morning, as I was getting ready for church.  I have had an outfit pinned on Pinterest for over a year.  I fell in love with this outfit and wanted to do my own spin on it.(If you don’t know what Pinterest is or think Pinterest is dumb then, I can find a Pin to send you that will educate you.)  Saturday night I picked out my clothes and laid them out.  I looked at my Pin again and decided that I had done “okay”. Sunday morning I got up, showered, got ready and got dressed.  Immediately I started comparing myself to the girl in the picture.  She’s gorgeous, that’s why the outfit looks good on her.  I didn’t use the right color of jeans, right color of shirt, my sweater is brighter, my jewelry is different, her shoes are cuter, her thighs are amazing, she’s taller, she’s curvier, I can’t compare to her.  I almost took the outfit off and just said, I can’t do this because, obviously everyone else has my Pin in their head and will know I totally butchered her outfit and look like a clown. Sat myself down, prayed and told myself that I was going to church.  It wasn’t about what I was wearing, how I looked, or if my outfit looked clownish. It was about God, not about me.  I needed to get downstairs so we could go.  My Big Guy who is generally not all up in my fashion or lack there of, declared the outfit a hit.  Without prompting he volunteered how much he liked it.  Then I had him take a pic for some friends on Facebook who like me have lost weight and often will recreate a look and show a side by side on our site.  They loved it.  I got, only positive responses.  I received several compliments at church and even my Noodle who had stated her hatred for my ugly yellow sweater, admitted it looked good.  Not one of these things outshined the fact that I had just shoved my negative self talk down and embraced how I looked, before walking out of the house.

My take on the Pinterest outfit :)

My take on the Pinterest outfit.  I was told that her blog is called, Curves and Confidence.   I am going to check it out 🙂

I know that many women are hard on themselves and have a negative body image.  I  know personally that it can become overwhelming if I allow it to.  We often see who we were in the mirror and not who we are now.  We see every flaw, every imperfection and we narrate every negative comment that anyone could throw our way, in our heads. Sunday’s message was about how that in itself is ego.  We are so full of ourselves that there is no room for others or most importantly God, in our head and hearts.  We are placing ourselves above all. So yes, I was in tears by the time service was over because, it went along perfectly with what I had felt while getting ready that morning.

I’m not really sure what this has to do with weight loss but, it has a lot to do with me. As stated above I obviously have a lot of ego! I hope that we can all take a moment and stop being upset by the things that don’t really matter.  Take an inventory of what should truly be important to us. Say kind things to ourselves and be thankful for what we have in our lives.  No strings, no if only’s, no I’ll be happy when’s, just be at peace with who you are, and the fact that you are loved, beautiful and not at all the most horrible person on earth.

 

 

 

Honesty Sucks Sometimes ~By:Steph

Reset

I think I have “reset” myself on this journey about 5016 times…this month. Okay maybe these past 4 years.  I am happy with the fact that I do indeed have the desire and the drive to reset.  I am grateful for the strength I find in the Lord, to not just chuck everything and dive into a carb filled pool of deliciousness for the rest of my life.  Sometimes I even entertain the thought of just giving up and eating what I want and quitting the healthy rollercoaster ride.  Just when I feel like I’ve got things under control and I have changed my thinking and relationship with food, ABRACADABRA…something happens.  I know this is something I need to figure out and I’m honestly trying.

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I definitely have always had issues with depression and anxiety.  I take medication and feel okay most of the time.  Prayer has helped immensely with this struggle.  I think that if I am going to blog, I have to blog the good and the bad.  I have to share my HONEST experience not just the healthy recipes and victories. So here goes, I fell off the wagon.  Actually, I think the wagon jerked to a stop, slung me out in front of it and then ran over me. Do wagons have reverse? If so, I may have been backed over too.  I had a family member diagnosed with cancer…again.  I thought I handled it well.  I prayed, I focused on the positive, I said all of the right things to myself.  However, on the inside I think, it hit me harder.  It brought up thoughts of another family member’s diagnosis last year, and all of the emotions of that time. Depression lessens my will to resist carbs.  For the past several weeks I have been indulging in things I hadn’t eaten in months. Things I know better than eating.  I pushed through the dumping and got to the point where sugar didn’t get to me or at least I didn’t physically feel awful when I ate it.

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On Saturday night, I realized I was really struggling. I gave myself a pep talk, I prayed and decided I had to fix this.  On Sunday I heard the best possible message preached for my state of mind.  So, guess what?  RESET…again.  Yesterday went pretty well. Today is more of a struggle but, I’m doing fine.  I do admit though, I am craving those foods I am pushing out. I know that if I can get through a couple of weeks, the worn out, headachey (yep headachey), feelings of withdrawl and cravings will go away.  I just need to actually DO THIS for 2 weeks.  I think that now that I am fully aware of what was in the back of my mind and focused on it, I will be okay.  If not, I’ll be honest about that too.

That was the bad news.  The good news is I know that my God is bigger than the problems in my head.  The other good news is that my Big Guy and I actually were able to go on a very unexpected mini getaway weekend before last.  Left Saturday morning and came home Monday afternoon.  We hit a lot of coastal towns in that short time frame. It was our first getaway without the kids in 2 years. We were in need of a little couple time.  We had beautiful weather, gorgeous beaches, antique shops (yes, I’m 80 yrs old at heart), time to relax together and reconnect.  Despite my humidty hair, it was an amazing weekend that almost didn’t happen.  First I didn’t want to ask for time off on such short notice.  Then we didn’t know what to do with the kids.  Thank you to my Noodle for being an awesome big sister and watching the Bee and the Monster Boy for us.  Last, it was our month to serve as greeter’s at church so I felt super guilty calling people last minute and asking them to cover us.  It all worked out and we had the help of some really gracious people who encouraged us to go and enjoy ourselves.

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I’ll end it with this, I’m grateful that I have an amazing Big Guy who supports me and encourages me.  I have good friends who care and listen when I need to be insane for a moment.  I have healthy, amazing, pain in the rear, kids who I love to pieces. I have a family who are a blessing. I have a God who makes ALL THINGS POSSIBLE.  Even things like helping me overcome my self defeating thoughts and internal dialogue.  I am blessed beyond measure and need to focus on that and not setbacks. 

Hope you are having a wonderful week.  If you are interested in the current message series that I have been talking about, please leave a comment or message me.  I will get you the links for our church website.  Changing our thoughts is difficult, NOT impossible.

Take one small step and focus on a way to be kind to yourself at least once a day this week.  These little steps add up.

 

 

Better late than never :) By Steph

IMG_20130814_103913 This is me right after our vacation in the stripes. The other two are pics of clothes I wore TIGHTLY prior to weight loss.

Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me, happy birthday dear Meeeeee, okay you get the point. Well, I am a few days late but, better late than never. Right?

I did my big kicking re-gain’s ass weigh in on Wednesday my 40th birthday. In the 5 weeks between my challenge of getting back to logging my food, working out and eating better, I lost 13.6 of my 16 pound regain. Leaves me with a mere 2.4 pounds to lose and put this nasty little episode behind me. I’m proud of the outcome. No, I didn’t lose 16 pounds in 5 weeks but, I kicked butt and did it the right way. A lot of exercise, meal planning and praying for help. There is nothing to feel bad about there, in my opinion anyway. Oh wait…mines the only one that counts since, it’s my body, my challenge and my life! Okay God gets ultimate claim to it but, still for all accounts and purposes, I’ll claim second on that list!

I’ve had some motivators who probably don’t even realize they’ve motivated me. A lady from church is on her own weight loss journey and reading her check ins, ups and downs, has kept me realistic and focused on the fact that we all have our struggles and our successes. A great friend since high school has stopped taking a backseat in her life and made proactive steps towards improving her life. I see her looking to the Lord, taking a leap of faith and finding a new job, getting out there and coaching her little girls soccer team and just being an all around inspiration. My husband’s faith in me and my capabilities, even when I’m doubting them. The way he works for our family which oh yeah includes me! If he thinks I’m worth working for, shouldn’t I think the same way? My bestie co-blogger (well yeah we suck at the quantity but, it’s all about the quality…right Clint?) and his own struggle with and then stomping all over of re-gain! Plus the numerous other successes he’s had lately. Another friend who has been through the wringer off and on lately and just keeps smiling and moving forward PLUS, joining me on a get our butts in gear challenge and she lost quite a few pounds herself in this time period! If you look for it there are plenty examples of why perseverance is so important to us. We easily recognize it in others but, some of us…OKAY ME ME ME…find it hard to see in ourselves.

Went to the coast camping with my hubby and our 9 month old Bear (okay technically he’s our German Shepard puppy) and still managed to get a lot of movement in, cook some seriously healthy and delicious meals and enjoy ourselves. Let’s see some highlights from the trip…Bear barked and protected us from oncoming traffic for about 30 miles before Joe lost it and decided he was riding in his kennel in the trailer the rest of the way to the ocean, I made it to our pit stop without wetting my pants (I drank A LOT of water and iced coffee on the way there.), Joe got pulled into the ocean by Bear and I laughed hysterically, I got pulled into the ocean by Bear and laughed much less before just giving up and enjoying it, I stepped foot in the ocean DURING SHARK WEEK (I know pretty daring since I’m sure the sharks were very aware what week it was!), spent alone time with my guy and Bear of course, took some amazing walks, relaxed, reconnected as a couple, and of course still managed to LOSE WEIGHT on vacation.

The past couple of weeks I reconnected with my inner tomboy and realized I love riding my bike! Joe took us to the park where they have all these hills, jumps, and courses for BMX riding. I have a beach cruiser and a 40 year old body…neither has any kind of shocks! We rode for hours burned a gazillion (yes I logged it and it said a gazillion 😛 on MFP) calories. It was so much fun going on the course and track. It was incredibly awesome realizing I was CAPABLE of doing this! I had so much fun and we went back the following week too. So last weekend was our second week and the highlight was me going down a huge hill and hitting the track at a bad angle and too fast, thus flipping me off my bike into another hill! I was a big girl and there were no tears…I cannot say there were no bruises though. I am still sporting some pretty nice mementos of the “trip”. We kept riding another 2 hours after that and it was a great family day. I am now on the search for a mountain bike because, well shocks would be really, REALLY, nice to have if I’d like to keep my knees and spine in decent shape (I’m sort of fond of those two things sooo…). I am way into the idea of a new bike but, someone is going to have to mud wrestle me to keep me from taking my big booty seat off my beach cruiser and putting it on the new bike! I like it, it’s very comfy…we’re friends.

ResizedImage_1377897957164 Family pic from my birthday dinner. Can you tell my son has his daddy’s smile? lol

For my birthday went out for dinner and had a nice time. Oh plus the restaurant sang happy birthday to me in Japanese and gave me a dessert that my 3 children promptly ate all of. When we left I decided I required some ice cream so we headed to Coldstone Creamery and I had a half of a kids cup of ice cream after dinner, before deciding I probably should stop eating it because, no one likes puking on their birthday and it wasn’t “that kind” of party sooo…I tossed the ice cream instead. It was delicious though 🙂

I am now on my way to achieving my goal weight. I am keeping up the food logging, exercise and healthy choices (most of the time). I’m not giving myself a timeline because, as long as I am moving in the right direction, I really don’t care how long it takes. I’m happy where I am and I feel wonderful so if I lose more living like this, that will be great. If I don’t, well you know what? That will be great too. 40 feels pretty amazing from my vantage point.

Thanks for listening to (okay yes technically reading) my ramblings and hodgepodge of giddy goofiness.1238185_3447216314959_244113364_n

Hugs and good choices,
~Steph

P.S. I should have just kept eating the ice cream and got sick on my birthday. I’ve been sick since the day after with some kind of tummy thing. I have no clue what is up. Yes, this is me feeling sorry for my tummy! lol