Sunday, July 09, 2017

On Turning 40

I distinctly remember the year leading up to my 30th birthday being filled with trepidation about the upcoming new decade. 30, ugh. That was like being a real, real adult. Our parents had been in their thirties when we were kids. Teachers, doctors, business people, you know, mature adults, were in their 30s. It just seemed so OLD. It was a bit ridiculous, looking back now on the whole thing. I already had 2 kids, a mortgage, car payments and bills, how much more "adult" could you get? So, 30 came and went, and then ended up being a lot of fun. There were ups and some pretty low lows, but overall, life was good.

And then 39 hit. And those old feelings of fear and anxiety surfaced. 40, ugh. It's just so old. Honestly, the 3 years leading up to 40 hadn't been as fun as the first half of the decade. At 37, I suffered a compound fracture in my right fibula and tibia, leaving me unable to drive for 3 months, and severely limping for 12. At 34, I had had our third child, and decided to stay home, so there I was, stuck with a toddler, with no transportation or the will to even walk. Every step hurt. I gained 25 pounds and for the first time in my life, I was scared of activity, and trying new things. Breaking your leg in such a fashion that the bone doesn't heal for 9 months does something to you. And just from playing a game of friendly volleyball. (insert eye roll) My balance was off, my heart would pound when I wasn't on steady ground, and I was truly fearful of injuring myself again. Not to mention, the loss of my income was starting to really affect our family financially.

In February of this year, just 2 months shy of the big day, something clicked. I was at a friend's house, when one of the ladies started talking about Keto and how she had lost 16 pounds in 2 months. My ears perked up. I had started to get too comfortable with that extra 25 pounds and I knew that I needed to do something to change my habits soon. You know, 40, no one loses weight after turning 40. Literally, the next day, I cut most carbs out of my life. No bread, rice, potatoes, or sugars. I lost 3 lbs in 2 days. People will say that was water weight, but I'd never dropped like that before, and it was enough to keep me going. Strangely enough, eating low carb wasn't as hard as one would imagine. I wasn't as hungry, and losing the bloat did wonders for my body image. By my birthday, I was down about 15 lbs and today, I'm 5 pounds away from my goal weight. What a difference feeling physically like my younger self has made!

Around that time, I also ordered the book You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero. Sincerely, if you are looking for motivation to become your best self, this book is amazing. Funny, but no holds barred, this book quickly put me in my place about making excuses for the life I was leading. I started focusing on making positive changes to my attitude, and actively pursuing abundance. Physically, I was feeling good and my online business was taking off. My husband and I planned a kick ass trip to the NE and visited NYC for the first time. I continue to work on my anxieties with getting hurt again. If I know I am safe, but just scared, I'm pushing myself to try new activities. Like the ropes course on a cruise ship we were on over spring break. Or even paddle boarding on the 4th of July. Just like when I turned 30, I'm learning 40 is just a number. I'm sure when I'm 49 turning 50, I'll look back on my feelings of being old and laugh. I may as well feel that way now!

Working on changing my attitude and habits have already made this year pretty amazing and I can honestly say that I'm excited to see what the rest of this decade reveals.

(And really, go buy that book. It's awesome.)

Friday, September 27, 2013


Imagine waking up one morning to your coworker's foot in your face. She got scared in the middle of the night, so she drove to your house and thought it would be ok to climb in bed with you. Then imagine walking down the hall to find that two additional coworkers thought it would be swell to sleep in your guest room. They needed breakfast and a ride to work.

Imagine driving to work as your coworkers pushed and pinched each other while calling out various and asunder bad names. You think it will be ok and you can get through it because soon you'll be at work and you can shut your door and work on that important project coming up.

Your coworkers have other plans.

You start the work scheduled for the day, but the first interruption occurs, "Milk, milk, MILK!" You get the milk and return to your job, but while you were fixing the glass of milk, your coworker thought it would be funny to delete a few paragraphs of the report you were writing. You breathe a heavy sigh, and retype the words. The background fades as you become immersed again in your work.

But another coworker needs help with their project and won't you stop what you are doing RIGHT NOW and help them? Never mind the fact that it is their work and they should have gotten help earlier in the day. You stop and try to be patient, but you haven't done this part of the job in at least 20 years, so things are a little foggy. After doing some research, you finally figure it out and the coworker is happy, or at least not mad anymore.

As you return to your work, another coworker comes in and it seems he's having bathroom issues and would you please come and wipe his bum?

You decide to be nice and take your coworkers to lunch, but they have trouble agreeing where they want to go. A place is finally picked and food is ordered. One coworker has issues sitting still though and prefers to climb all over your lap or run around the restaurant. You spend most your lunch trailing behind him.

After lunch, you continue to work, but your coworkers are having a party and screaming very loud. You put a slideshow on for them for entertainment, but then immediately feel guilty because shouldn't they be working instead?

The end of the day finally rolls around and you think you've actually gotten something accomplished before realizing that another coworker colored all over your walls and threw trash all over your floor. You hurriedly clean up before your boss walks in and get ready to go home.

You think you can maybe relax NOW, but your coworkers have nowhere to go, so they decide to come eat dinner with you, and can they bring some friends along? THERE IS NO ESCAPING THIS.

The evening rolls along much like the day as your coworkers don't like what you've prepared for dinner and they voice this opinion very loudly. And again with the screaming.

As you finally get everyone settled into bed, you receive a telephone call. It's your boss letting you know that there's been an issue and you are no longer getting paid for your job, nor is any payment coming anytime soon. He hangs up without even saying thank you.

And tomorrow you get to do it all over again.

(This should go without saying, but here it is, I love staying home, I don't want to go back to work, but I just needed to get this out.)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Peyton: The Middle Schooler

Oh, Middle School, I was so scared of you. I've been scared of you since Peyton first walked through the door to kindergarten. Puberty, eighth graders, changing classes, and extra homework loomed over my head for 6 years before Peyton even stepped foot on the middle school campus. I may be shooting myself in the foot, but so far, I've been so, so pleasantly surprised.

Peyton has walked out the front door every morning so far with nary a complaint. He has walked home every day and not once called me to come pick him up halfway. HE CLEANED HIS ROOM this past weekend and it looked as good as when I did it. He's gotten his homework done without a fight. I should have sent him to middle school YEARS ago!

The first day of school was rougher on me than him. I had gotten up early to take Shey to school, so I could walk him to his class, and as I was pulling into the driveway, Peyton was already outside, dressed, with his friends ready to take off. I sputtered, "Did dad take your picture?" Yes. "Do you have your lunch?" Yes. "Did you eat breakfast?" No, but I'm ok. "No, wait here, I'll get you some money."

Anything to slow down his leaving for just a minute, so I had time to process.

I stood there in the driveway, watching him walk out of the cul-de-sac and an unexpected wave hit me. The tears welled up and I fought the urge to get into the car and follow him. I've been dropping him with others since he was 12 weeks old, but watching him walk away, seemingly all grown up, broke my heart a little. It was a huge reminder that my time with Peyton living in my house is on the downward slope. I've been so wrapped up in caring for a newborn, baby, then toddler, that he's matured without hardly a notice. I've got to get better at that.

I know middle school won't be all fun and games and life will be difficult at times, but I know we can get through it together.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Elizabeth: A Myriad of Months

I'm so glad that I faithfully documented Elizabeth's first year, but a little disapointed in myself that I let it drop from there. I'd tell myself that I'd remember all the little sweet and sour things that she does, but it's hard and I know there is already so much I've forgotten. I am going to get better at documenting our lives, even if it's just for me and my ever failing memory.


My sweet girl, where do I begin? Staying home with a toddler has been an adventure, to say the least. Especially a very independent, strong willed and loud toddler. Shortly after her second birthday, Elizabeth's vocabulary exploded and she gets very frustrated if you don't understand what she is trying to say. We often quote the scene from Little Nemo when Marlin is talking to Squirt and says, "You're really cute, but I don't understand you." While words are becoming more and more discernible, E still has her own little language. A precious little language that I'll miss as she grows older.


Right now, she is "painting" her nails with a highlighter. And such is life.

She loves her brothers fiercely and they are referred to as "My Peyton" and "My Shey". She's a big fan of Henry Hugglemonster, Team Umizoomi, and Dora. I admit, we probably watch a little too much TV, but hey, she can count to 12 in English, 5 or so in Spanish and she knows her shapes and ABC's. Go Disney!

Her smile is contagious and everywhere we go, she steals the show. The other day, we spent two hours at the orthodontist and the office loved her. They even "kidnapped" her for a bit so I could actually pay attention to the plan for Shey's teeth and sign my life away. If someone does make the mistake of not paying her any mind, she will stare at them like, "Hello! Look how cute I am!"

And now, I'm getting the highlighter manicure

Oh, E, you are my Joy!

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Holy Hiatus, Batman!

Where does the time go? I happened to pull up Blogger last night and realized it had been since January that I posted last. How odd, when for so, so long, blogging was a part of my everyday life. Apparently, I had a lot more free time working than I do staying at home. Or maybe staring at a computer all day just lent itself to spewing forth my thoughts for the World Wide Web to see.

I've missed you, little blog of mine. I promise to pay you more attention in the future.

I'm not sure how much catch up I should try and cram into this post. Maybe I'll just make a point to sit down once a day or so and fill in the details that way. Starting tomorrow. Ha. Today, I actually have quite a bit going on starting with doing a little P90 x then dropping off my first thirty-one order and finally meeting with my direct upline for thirty-one.

Wasn't that nifty how I got that in? Yes, I'm now a consultant for thirty-one gifts. (Poor Tamara, that's all I talk about anymore and now she has to read it on my blog too). Here's a quick link, if you're interested, then I promise to let it go for at least a few posts. Erika's page

Woot! Woot! For blogging again!

Monday, January 28, 2013

ING Half Marathon

I doubt many people sleep well the night before an early morning race. Anticipation and knowing that your alarm is set for an ungodly hour generally has one checking the time throughout the night. Add in the fact that most of the time you're in a strange bed makes the idea of running 13.1 miles even crazier than it sounds on its own. And yet, here I am, signed up for 3 races in 3 months. Well, two now as I thankfully made it through race one yesterday.

I spent Saturday night with my friend and her husband who were also signed up for the race and we headed out at 5 am Sunday morning. The ride was a little nerve wracking, not knowing how traffic would be closer to the start, wondering if I'd have time for that last bathroom break before the starting gun and once again rethinking my decision to participate in the craziness. I should have known better. There were plenty of bathrooms open and once you're in the corral, there is the 30 minute wait as the 25,000 people slowly make their way to the line.

My initial plan was to run the first 3 miles at a slow pace and then start my training intervals of run 3 minutes, walk 1. Word of caution, those first 3 miles, you will feel really good, great, in fact, and your idea of a steady pace increases exponentially until you find yourself beating your previous 5k PR by 2 to 3 minutes. I was so pleased with how I felt that I kept right on running more than I planned. I kept telling myself to take it easy, but the adrenaline and the fact that my friend is a runner not an interval-er, beat out my good sense. She had promised to stay with me and I didn't want to let her down. Never again. I'm not sure how much it would have helped, but walking more earlier may have helped me at the end. At the time, though, it actually felt better to do a slow jog than the intervals.

At mile 5, I ate a couple of GU blocks and for some reason, they didn't set well with me and out of the blue, at mile 6, I hit a wall. My legs felt good, I was breathing fine, but my stomach felt weird and quite honestly, I just wanted to sit down and quit. I expected to feel some of this around mile 8 or 9, but it hitting me so early really threw me for a loop. The thought of not even being halfway made me want to cry. And this is where runners will tell you it gets mental. I just kept telling myself I was fine, that I had run this many miles, and more, plenty of times without incident. And I soldiered on.

THANKFULLY, by 7.5 miles, I broke through the wall and the next 3 miles went by smoothly. I was feeling good again, even jogging more than walking. Oh, but then miles 11 and 12 came and my legs decided they were done playing nicely. If I jogged, my legs felt better, but the bottoms of my feet were a ball of nerves and I could feel the nice new blisters on both of my toes. If I walked, my feet felt better, but my calves and hamstrings rebelled and tightened to the point of some serious pain. Even though I had hoped to finish strong, I walked most of the last mile with short bursts of speed. My time was still about where I wanted it to be, so I thought better to be able to get across the finish line upright than to stop with one mile to my goal. One poor woman I saw must have been having a similar and worse problem because she was leaning on her two friends and her legs were locked straight. I felt really bad for her. Sucks to go all that way to have something like that happen at the end.

All the sudden, I looked up and holy cow, it was the finish line! I ran as fast as my poor legs could carry me that last tenth of a mile and finished with an official time of 2:48. As soon as I crossed the line, I could have broken down and sobbed. The pure relief of completing the race hits you in the face and many people were wiping their eyes. To be honest, I was not feeling well at that point. Where was my high?!

I found my friend (we had gotten separated at mile 10) and she took one look at my goosebumped arms and started shoving food at me. It was the strangest feeling, like I was going to pass out or throw up. Now that I look back, I didn't hydrate enough leading up to the race and being sick the week before probably didn't help either. At this point, I was seriously reconsidering my plan to complete two more halves.

Once again, thankfully, the feeling passed within 10 minutes or so and then Finally,the high started setting in. One day later, I'm still excited that I have two more races to do. They will be fun for different reasons, but I definitely will do better leading unto the day of the race.

I don't want to scare anyone who may be training for their first race, but moreso let you know that yes, it may suck at times, but you can do it and it will still be amazing.

Friday, November 09, 2012

And Love Some More

Whew, so how about that election? That sure brought the crazies out, didn't it? I'm not sure why people think angrily blasting their opinions on Facebook will win people over, but there you go. To me, it becomes less about the candidates or even the issues and more of a "I'm right and you're wrong."

When I was thinking about writing this post, I was incredibly frustrated and even angry. In a round about way, I found a status of someone that I'm no longer "friends" with that professes to be a Christian and a preacher too. The status was about the two candidates and quite frankly was incredibly racist. I was horrified and my initial reaction was to fire back a response, but I didn't. I've been trying to work on opening conversations with people, but I've tried before with this person and it just became a spitting match. I then thought about posting a scathing status myself, but that's not really appropriate either. So lucky reader, you get my thoughts.

I know I've mentioned before that I'm studying and slowly reading the New Testament to establish my own belief system. I've also been reading the history of the times and how the scriptures relate to what's happening. I've been wanting to write my thoughts but like any good English major, I've wanted to conduct research and check things before putting my thoughts to paper. Let's be honest though, the chances of me having time for all that and the energy are slim, so here are my initial observations. Actually, it's mainly just one: love.

Everything comes from love.

John 3:16 - For God so Loved the world . . .

John 13:34 - A new commandment I give to you, that you Love one anoher . . .

Galations 5:22 - But the fruit of the Spirit is Love . . .

Romans 13:9-10 - For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

I Corithians 13 - But the greatest of these is Love.

I John 4:7 - God is Love

In the New International Version of the New Testament, the word love appears 232 times. You know how many times hell is mentioned? Roughly 23. And some of those appear to refer to a physical place in Jerusalem that was the city dump. The area was always on fire.

I don't know about you, but 232 seems a little bigger than 23. And consistently, the scriptures refer to Love as the greatest, the most important, the first, etc. First and foremost, this is how you are to act. You are to love those around you, so they know you are of Me (God).

I am so tired of the phrase Love the sinner, hate the sin. If you love someone, truly, you don't treat them that way regardless of the sin. I love my children, I would not say the things that are being said about fellow humans to my children. I love my friends, we may disagree, but I would never attack them the way some of our fellow humans are being attacked. It is amazing we are able to bring any of the lost to Jesus the way some of these "Christians" are acting. Here's the thing, folks, we are ALL sinners. All fall short of the glory of God. My sin of over indulging on food, or alcohol, or gossip is no better than this or that person's sin of gambling or promescuity or lying.

We need to come together and say, hey, maybe this other stuff doesn't matter so much; we should all strive to take care of the "least of these". The people who don't have fresh water, the children without families, the families without homes. The people who need our help. Let's focus our attentions on that for a while.

There's a part in a Casting Crowns' song that says, "They're on the way to You, but they're stumbling over me." Let's show the love of Jesus and let God worry about the rest.