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Thursday, April 30, 2009

measuring up

it's been just over two weeks since i began my shred. and while my scale is evil (i have only lost two pounds) i reminded myself that muscle weighs more than fat, so i took my measurements toward the end of week one (i know, i should have started out that way, but i couldn't find the tape measure). i'm not terribly disappointed, but i was hoping i would drop, not gain inches in my bust! (i know it's not the sisterhood of the shrinking bra, but whatever.) it's just a half an inch, but i already can't see my feet, even the minute increases are not exactly what i was after. i want less of the girls. please!

i dropped 3 inches in my waist (areyoukiddingme?? three freaking inches?? yes. i measured three times) and 1/2 inch in my abs, 1/2 inch in the hips and 1/2 inch in the arms. i managed to gain 1 1/2 inches in my thighs. helloooooo. how the heck is that going to get me into smaller jeans, praytell? (and i measured the thighs three times, too. who knows, maybe the initial measurement was off)

overall, i'm pleased with where i'm heading. i'm still like a crack addict around sugar, but i am happy to say that i have only had one diet coke in 17 days. it's not killing me, but i would be lying if i said i wouldn't enjoy the heck out of one right now.

perhaps it's my elderly frame, but i'm still having trouble with my knees. i did take a day off yesterday to continue to let my knees have a break. the workout today was good. but my knees are achey. i want to go back to level 2 (although who knows why. . . there are too many plank maneuvers for my taste, but then i'm not the exercisey type.)

i've stuck to working out every day (with the exception of a couple of days) and find that if i get it out of the way earlier in the day i'm happier knowing there's not a little evil jillian following me all day. i feel stronger, don't get winded in the work out as i did, and i feel like my arms have a little extra "something" that i'm happy about. heck i can do 14 girly pushups without collapsing on my face!! what about that??

many of you don't know me. but listen. i'll share a little secret. IF I CAN WORK OUT EVERY DAY ANYONE CAN!!! i am not athletic, i have back issues and i've never stuck to anything this dedicatedly (is that a word?) before in my life! i'm fighting through discomfort which is something i've never done the words of bella karolyi, "you can deww it!!"

probably way more than you really want to know about my mid-challenge assessment, but there you go. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


they say time flies, and it does! 

i'm about to head into the shower (thanks to jillian, i'm a sweaty mess, but i'm a DONE sweaty mess, thank you!) and leave to go pick up boy wonder from college. well, technically, i'm picking up boy wonder's stuff. he is staying behind for a end of the year leader's party with young life.

ummm where in the heck did my new college freshman go?? he is now officially a sophomore!! not only was it just last week that i birthed that kid, but yesterday, we dropped him off at school!! 

remember how time flies??

i'm snowed under by may activities and it isn't even may yet! graduation announcements still need to be mailed, baccalaureate still needs to happen in just over 10 days, toss in a little prom action this weekend, graduation, my nephew's baccalaureate and graduation and oh! a whiffle ball banquet that we are catering (at our house) and i pretty much want to take a huge bath.

calgon anyone?

except our bathtub probably needs cleaning. i'll add that to the ever-growing list.

calgon. . . 

and a martini!

(i'm just kidding people. i don't drink until after 2 pm. KIDDING!! i really don't drink much at all. i just like to WRITE about drinking. less calories that way!)

Monday, April 27, 2009

it's a new day

lots of stuff on my mind today (but then that's life with A.D.D.) and i have about a million different directions i want to go, but since i'm trying to get bamagirl out the door for school, the hubster and i still have our morning devotion, i'll get started on the fact that it's monday, and contrary to the typical "gah, it's monday" mentality, i'm looking at the brilliant blue skies, the sunshine peeking over the tree line and i am reminded that 

today is the day the Lord hath made. 

let us REJOICE

and be glad in it.

thank you Jesus to remind me that 

Life is GOOD!! (to coin a phrase)

and thanks to those of you who came to my pityparty and encouraged.

i love my imaginary friends-- my affectionate name for my blogfriends. because really, the hubster totally doesn't get it. 

and don't even get me started on twitter. he completely can't abide by my cellphone being a nesting ground for tweets. and i don't even have but two people tweeting to me directly. . . it's just that one is a rather prolific tweeter. and i would be too if i was all alone in a strange place. i could turn it off, but i wanna know what's going on!! what if i need to pray all of a sudden?

is technology hijacking my already stressed out brain?

and how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie roll pop?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

who needs to walk anyway?

okay, i took the day off yesterday because i was flat-out covered up all day and frankly, my legs, specifically, my knees were really achey.

today, like a dutiful shredder, i got ready to hang out with jillian. and i reverted to level one to save my knees. i had trouble with the jumping jacks (sharp pain on the outside of the knee, down to the upper outside calf muscle), butt kicks and not so much the jumprope. but the static lunges were hard on the knees too.

i know she says to press through, but i feel like i'm regressing, not getting better.

really i'm not whiney (well, disregard the last post) and i want to do this. but my acheing knees!! whaah!! how am i going to get upstairs now!!?


Saturday, April 25, 2009

pure negativity

maybe i should have called a spade a spade and just named my blog consider the dark side.

i purposefully called this thing pure joy because i so often struggle with the glass. i know there are many who consider it half full, but i've been of the firm opinion that it is half empty my entire life.

my glass isn't only half empty, i think someone forgot to wash it before they poured it half full. and it's chippped. i could cut my lip or something.

i have nothing to be lamenting over. really. i don't. my life doesn't s*ck. really, it doesn't. 

and yet, the clouds. they come in.

and it rains.

i'm wet.

and cold.

it's happened

i skipped.

and i'm okay with that.

my knees ache and i had a busy day.

and i'm okay with that.

so i'll return tomorrow. even though it's my sabbath. 

i'm okay with that, too.

sunny saturday

up early today, got some marketing materials ready for the hubster who is providing tea and water to our church's job fair this morning. and a couple of signs advertising a management position that we have available. i'm really hoping that the folks who are out of a job can find some opportunities at this event. and i'm hoping they enjoy petro's hint-of-orange™ iced tea, too! (and i have an awesome photo, but when i try to upload it, the color is all off. what in the world?? so here is a not-so-great quality shot from our website)

finishing up the graduation invites (most notably, bamagirl's… sort of like the plumber's wife who always has leaky pipes… hers are last b/c i had to get the "paying" customers taken care of first). over 500 hand-made invites! whew!

going to try to do some planting-o-the garden today. it's beautiful and i believe we're in the clear as far as frost goes. they say tax day is the date (although i'm not sure who "they" are, it does sound like a reliable rule of thumb) to aim to begin putting plants in the ground.

then later this afternoon, some of my small group girls are going to the homeschool prom, and i told them i'd like to take pictures for them. i'm a fledgling/newbie photographer and i'm always looking for someone to stalk with my camera. i hope they turn out nicely!

and true confessions time. i went to see gran torino with the hubster last nite at the "dollar theater" (nevermind that it costs two dollars. back when the theater opened, they charged a buck, so it is the dollar theater even though it's not a dollar anymore. you follow?) where we got the combo special… movie + drink + popcorn = 4 bucks. and i'm not going to lie here, i had a diet coke. yes i did.

and it was amazing.

but i'm back on the wagon. (and i only ate about 1/3 of my small popcorn)

and the movie was terrific (even with the vast amount of F bombs).

and my knees hurt (shred day 12, level 2  jillian can take her plank ab jacks and stuff ummmm well, nevermind)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Eight things

Sonya at ladybugs, butterflies and boxing tagged me earlier today right after she encouraged me on my quest to fit into my jeans (and spring/summer clothes). Here's how 8 THINGS works:
- Mention the person that tagged you.
- Complete the lists of 8's.
- Tag 8 of your wonderful bloggy friends.
- Go tell them you tagged them!


getting my office moved from "the cave" downstairs to the spare bedroom upstairs

going to denver in june and seeing family and visiting boy wonder who will be on summer staff at young life's frontier camp

seeing bamagirl graduate in less than a month

losing enough weight to fit in my spring/summer clothes from last year

finishing all the graduation stuff and seeing projects completed

welcoming my niece into our family in july

the day when i don't have migraines anymore

the day when the dogs don't have accidents in the basement hallway 


went to BSF

grocery shopped

shredded with jillian

drove bamagirl to school

ate sushi in the car

worked on silhouetting more of our menu products

played a goofy clothespin game at youth group

listened to the hubster teach on proverbs at youth group


stay focused

sing like my heart feels

play the piano, guitar, and/or cello

take away the pain for those who have lost children

cure cancer


be an ace photographer

hang out with my mom


gray's anatomy

dancing with the stars

american idol

america's next top model

o'reilly factor*


*these are actually the hubster's favorites. i watch with him

sorry, i don't have 8 shows. i really don't watch tv that much.


sarah at sojo life

amy at milkbreath and margaritas

4 little men & girly twins

jane jane

an unpink life


becky at brown m&m

hey mamma, where's my. .. 

does this blog make my butt look big?

i'm about to set the keyboard aside for a little shred with some extra sumpin-sumpin. yeah, level two. i hope i'm not being overly optimistic about my abilities to even do level one without gasping for air (it is a FAR cry from day one. let me tell you it's flat-out amazing how i've improved in 10 days). 

if you hear crying from the south, no worries. it's just whiney-ole-me.

stay tuned. . .


can anyone but me hear that rocky theme music playing?? omygracious! i did it!! and i didn't hardly have to stop or modify (except at the the end. i was not quite prepared for the plank abs. i was ALL ABOUT lying on the floor, gasping for air as i "relaxed" and did my bicycle kick abs. nope. not ready at all. but i'll give it a try next time). 

i was afraid i wasn't going to be ready to tackle level 2 after how badly i was prepared for level 1. i'm feeling it each day and pushing a little harder every day.

and i'm on day ELEVEN people without my nectar of the gods, diet coke.

and p.s. margaritas (as much as i love to talk about them) is not really on the diet anymore. it's like drinking a meal in one glass. according to, a margarita has 740 calories. that's actually almost half of your daily allotment of calories, and if you're like me, do you ever stop at "just one?"

so that's why i started drinking rum and diet coke, which has about 66 calories. but since i've sworn off diet coke in favor of water, i've elected to drink vodka tonic (when i feel the need for a cocktail. it's not like i'm some kind of alcoholic fish, mind you) which has 165 calories. really, i'd rather just sip on a lovely, classy glass of chardonay, but alas, all wine plagues me with vicious migraines. and i'm giving up diet coke in hopes of finding a way to have less of a reason to pluck my head from my body. the migraines get old, lemme tell ya!

and to be just super honest here, when i go out, i'm mostly ordering water. and because i want to splurge? i get a lemon, too. but i'm not gonna lie, either. i do enjoy a little nip now and then. but in the words of gladys on the ellen degeneres show, "i still love Jesus!"

and as far as my diet? well, i haven't been counting calories or really killing myself. but i think that's all about to change. i'm going to go old-school and count calories. and kill the desire to eat white things. like refined anything. bread, sugar, ummmm pasta, basically anything good. i'm gonna load up on the veggies (free stuff, because they actually take more calories to burn than i'm consuming). it seems silly to work out and expect results if i'm not willing to make the food changes too. everything in moderation.

so i'm off to go shower and sip on the 64 oz of water i'll be consuming throughout the day. i'm so glad that my body is over the intial wincing agony of squatting. because with all that water, each day was akin to how i felt giving birth without an epidural. 

not too embarrasing when you're at home, but try it at the bathroom adjacent to the nice, quiet sushi bar.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

another baby in trouble

please pray for kayleigh. she is a micro preemie and has been doing so well! pray for her family, especially her God-glorifying daddy who so faithfully maintains her blog. please. say a prayer for kayleigh. she's going to need a miracle.

wakin up is hard to do. . .

they say that wakin up is, 

ha-rd to do,

now i know, i know that it's true. . .

they say that this is the end. . .

instead of makin up we should be wakin up again. . .

or something like that.

yeah. up early today (the hubster had an early morning meeting) and i decided to get my shred in before leaving for my day.

and now that it's over, i won't have jillian's little face in mine saying, "hey, when you gonna get that shred on??"

she's gone. for another whoooooole day!! 

and i'm done with day 10, and have the entire rest of the day to enjoy.

but the last few days my legs have ached. and i'm seriously going to go to the sports store and get 3 pound weights. i've been kickin it crazy style with 5 pounders. i want guns, just not a heart attack.

so there you have it. it's a new day. the sun is shining, stellan is on the road to recovery and my workout is compli. what more could a girl ask for??

now stop that with margarita talk!! it's only 7:45!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

comitments and oaths

it used to be that a man's word was as good as gold. 

is it still true today? 

when we say we're going to do something, do we follow through?

it's something i've taught my children through the years. especially with commitments to clubs and sports teams. "it's okay if you abhor diving, honey. and that the coach humiliated you in front of the entire team. but you made a commitment to the team, and you need to follow through." or "yes, i know being in student council sounded like a good idea when you signed up. and i know the advisor is not exactly talented in running a club, but you made a commitment and you most follow through. see it finished. end of story."

recently i had an occasion to talk with bamagirl about someone in our midst who made a promise to do something with me on a monthly basis (a one hour commitment) and has blown me off two months in a row for really silly reasons. and she didn't even call me to beg off, she sent me text messages at the last minute. grrrrr. i hate it when people can't even be weak and weasely to my face.

but it was a good teaching moment. even at 17, we are still having teaching moments in the car. you know, the place where you don't have to make eye contact and to leave the conversation would result in some serious road rash. i love car conversations.


i told her how important it is to follow through on your word. how important it is for people to be able to depend on your word. to be trustworthy. to have integrity. to be a woman of character.

our words have meaning. the tongue is the strongest muscle in our body (well, our jaw muscles, really, but it's all connected to the mouth). and it has the potential to bring great joy and encouragement or to destroy and wound in a second.

i wish i was a pillar of great examples in the former category. but i'm afraid that my sarcastic, quick-witted mouth has gotten me in more trouble than has blessed others. i am guilty of desiring a laugh rather than an "awww, that's so sweet." i am guilty of aiming for the instant gratification of the afirming "yes, you are so clever, and hilarious!"

so while i haven't been the best example of sweetness, am delinquent in praise and am too often critical, i am fully commited to being a woman whose words can be trusted. 

and this oathness, these words, this pubic forum where i pledged 30 days of shredding? well, i can't tell you how much the words of encouragement from my few followers (and that completely slays me that people actually follow my blog) are keeping me going. knowing that i am not going to go back on my word. i don't know you, my imaginary friends out there in blogland, but for some reason, i don't want to let you down.

so let me put aside my keyboard while i grab my remote. it's time for jillian to kick my a*s.

Monday, April 20, 2009

wear orange

yeah, in my part of the world, everyday is wear orange day. what can i say? we're an orange kind of town!
but tomorrow, i'm all about orange, and i'll be sportin in for my man stellan. he's having a tricky ablation (hey mckmama isn't the only one who likes to throw down a medical term or two!!) done on his ever-lovin tiny boy heart tomorrow, and us stellan-followers are going to wear orange in honor of him. and to honor his ever-patient mommy, throw in a little pink. (and don't forget pink gum, just for mckmama!).
but that's tomorrow. today, i'm just a little concerned about him, but at the same time, i'm excited. could it be that jennifer might be able to get back to the thawing tundra, hug her msc while nibbling on woodland creature food? that is exciting. and to think how the msc will practically body-slam their mommy and brother when they first see them. i hope someone will have a camera (duh, they always have a camera on hand!). what a day of rejoicing that will be!!
i was able to scrape some of that overflowingness off my plate over the past couple of days. i have all but finished the graduation invites (500 hand-made invites, and that doesn't even include bamagirl's!), have purchased a few wedding gifts, made the cards, and am fairly set in that regard. baccalaureate is winding down, but there are still many loose ends flapping in the breeze (mainly the performances. .. think happy thoughts. . . think happy thoughts!) but will hopefully be resolved by next tuesday.
i'm on day 8 of my shred and am feeling really great (and four pounds lighter, thank you).
i think it's a little of this one day at a time think i've adopted over the weekend. and asking for help (heaven forbid!). i asked bamagirl to help with the yard, and voila! it worked! i can't do (and shouldn't) everything. one day at a time. one project. focus (yeah, right, remember me, the queen of A.D.D??) and then there's this little word i'm learning to say. . .
i'm learning to get over myself and realize that i don't have to do everything that comes down the pike.
am i the only person who struggles with overcommitment?
learn to say no, and it's amazing how the panic attacks are fewer and further between.
imagine that!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

seven for seven, even on the sabbath

no rest for the not-so-skinny! as much i would have like to take the sabbath off, i decided that it's a 30 day shred, and i can do 30 days.

today i wanted to work out in the afternoon, but then boy wonder and his GF came back early from lifeguard training, beaming with their new certificates, and spent some time chatting before they headed back to school. seemed a bit rude to say, gee, i'd like to visit, but i've got this urge to shred. what??

so i chatted, and then my small group was due over, so i made cookies for the girls (yes, i'll admit, i had two) and we finished up about 8:15. so i began my workout as soon as they left. 

while i still can't make it through all of the pushups on the second round, i am a far cry from a week ago! and i used to have to beg off a few jumping jacks and jump ropes (it's a calf-burner, for sure!). not any more! and at the end when it's time to do butt kicks, jumping jacks and jump roping, i have more energy to do the cardio than i do in the beginning.

so i'm seeing progress. 

as for measuring, i'm logging my measurements and will report back in 10 days. my last set of measurements were from a few months (and 8 pounds) ago. i want an accurate-ish account. i didn't get my measurements on day one. it was more like day 6. blah blah blah. i'm logged in and i'll be reporting back about midway through the 30 days. 

i'm just pretty pumped that i've made it the first week and haven't skipped (not that i haven't wanted to). 

day 7 without diet coke, and i'm alive. whoo hoo!!

on to week two!!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

abbreviated day 6

ran out of time, but i still did 2/3 of the workout. still sweating like uhhh a glass of lemonade on a hot august day (that's ladylike sweating, right?).

didn't get the grass cut. boooo. 

didn't get the cards assembled, but i did get some cute ovenware and 8 ramekins for the wedding gift. included my recipes for easy creme brulee and calhoun's spinach maria. (another post perhaps). i also made a card, so all is not lost!

i got the photos for work completed, envelopes for the senior invites purchased, and i even bought me a snappy new dress (and shoes) for the wedding.

all in all a pretty dang good day!

my plate runneth over

today is going to be beautiful. 

beautiful in that the Lord is blessing us with cornflower-blue skies, a spring green that will knock your socks off, and mild temperatures that are nice enough if you wanted to lay out (like bamagirl will be doing, against her mother's wishes, but when i was that age, i worshipped the sun-god, too), but not hot enough that you'll even crack a sweat.

have i ever mentioned that i love spring?!

but i'm shunning a lazy day to soak up God's spring bounty for a day of running around franticly. well, i'm not sure if frantic is the right word, but in my heart, it feels frantic and that's what happens when i have too much on my plate.

stop one:

head to petro's (the family biz) to take the last few product shots. i've learned to silhouette objects and apply a drop shadow, so i feel like some photoshop rockstar. i'm just about done with this project, and it makes me (and the boss) happy!

stop two:

purchase clever, precious wedding gifts times 4. i know each one should be tailor-chosen, but i'm too pressed for time, and it needs to happen. oh, and did i mention: budget?? because that is the optimal word here, folks. on. the. cheap. any ideas would be most welcome!

stop three

home again, home again, jiggedy jig. assemble graduation invitations that i did for bamagirl and ten of her friends. seemed like a perfectly logical idea when i posed it back in january. not so much now that graduation is less than 4 weeks away and everyone (including myself) waited until the last minute to order. it's busywork, and i enjoy it. it's just that i have other stuff that needs to be done too, and that is what causes the heart palpitations. seriously!

stop four

the yard. springtime is beautiful and rain is a blessing. but this time of year, our yard grows like a fiend!! it's supposed to rain tomorrow so if i don't get to it today, it'll be lose-a-dachshund-long. who knows when the rain will stop? (ummm too lazy to check the weather forcast) i could get the hubster to do it, but then again, he's on a retreat and will be screaming into the driveway in just enough time to shower and prepare for:

stop five

wedding. luckily it's literally three minutes from our house. yikes. i have no idea what to wear. all the spring clothes are in the attic. another job i abhor is the switching of the wardrobes. it's not enough to have a gift and a card ready, but i have to look nice too? gah!

stop six

shredding. gotta get that in sometime today, too. it would be logical to do it right now at 8:20 in the morning, but i've already showered and i'm preparing to go do my shoot before it gets busy at the store. 

stop seven

padded room. i hope they serve chocolate.

and margaritas.

five for five

didn't have time, but made some time. sweatin & shreddin. better than yesterday, and just like jillian said, i've got way more stamina than day one (like that is saying alot). but i did it. and i'm happy to report that i really don't ache much at all anymore. 

and it felt good. (only a slight exaggeration)

sisterhood of the shrinking jeans? i'd settle for being able to fit in my jeans without losing the feeling in my legs.

so i'll be back at it tomorrow. only 25 more days to go!!

no diet coke today. i sacrificed and had a margarita. ha!

Friday, April 17, 2009

watching and waiting

it's the hardest thing, really.


gah, i really don't enjoy it! i'll drive out of my way to avoid standing still in traffic (even if it requires more time to get to where i'm going that it would have if i had just exercised a wee bit-o-patience!), and i bristle in lines at the department/grocery store. heck. i hate having to wait for microwave popcorn to finish it's poppin, and high-speed internet sometimes just ain't high-speed enough!

i don't have to wait for a song to finish. i don't even have to suffer through the songs on an album that i don't really care for because a) if you don't like the song on the album/cd, don't download/purchase it, and b) creating a playlist negates having to listen to anything that i don't really want to listen to. i'm old enough to remember albums. and it was next to impossible/too much of a hassle to skip to the song that you liked. or to listen to the song that you liked over and over. and cassettes weren't much easier. the ipod has really changed the way we listen to music.

oh, but i'm rambling. you know me. a little trip with me n' A.D.D. is always adventuresome!

oh yeah, waiting. 

don't like it. 

not. one. bit.

what made me think about the agonizing (i don't mean to over-dramatize, really) process of waiting was stellan. 

the mckmiracle baby we've all been watching and waiting with/for.

and how desperately mckmamma has been waiting. hoping. that her little baby would settle and his heart would rest so that he could grow… wait some more before they would have to do the ablation. and yet, being weary of waiting, wanting something to change so she could go home with her nicely healed baby and hug on her many small children, eat woodland creature food and return to the controlled chaos that is life with four children four and under. 

and so we wait. and watch. 

and what do we see?

well, besides some eye-popping awesome pictures, we see a family living out their lives wearing their faith on their sleeves. showing us what it looks like to cling to the King. to live life with Hope. to rest on the knowledge that God is in Control. that Jesus is Alive. He rose from the Dead and Reigns!

so while i'm here in the waiting room, tapping my toes, slightly impatiently, i am so blessed to be in good company. knowing that there are thousands who join me here. with our hands clasped in prayer. resting on the Truth of the Gospel. what a delight to wait and see how God will be showing up. and how many will see. and may His glory be shouted from the rooftops, from the halls at boston's children's hospital (where i once spent three weeks when i had my complete spinal fusion), from the living rooms and offices and libraries and wherever else people are checking in on this little guy…

we are waiting with you, jennifer. holding our collective breaths. and so thankful for the technology that not only allows little hearts to heal, but to allow us front-row seats in the waiting room.

on the front lines of the battle.

holding hands.

and praying.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

shred day @#$&% four

okay, i was feeling really great all day today. i didn't get to my workout until just a minute ago, in fact, i'm sweating and still breathing a bit harder than usual as i type this. but i did it!! 7:35 pm and i did it. not. going. to. give. up! (as if i could on day stinkin four!!)

my body has recovered nicely from the initial onslaught, and really, now that it's over, i think it went well. i'm only skipping a couple of butt kicks and arm raises with the weights. i guess my good workout yesterday had me thinking i'd be kickin it jillian style tonite, but not quite. and i'm sure that a long day had something to do with me not quite feeling energized like i did legs are feeling stronger, and i'm gonna get little guns. and did i mention i'm in the sisterhood of the shrinking jeans?? yeah, and i'm bankin on it. measurements come this weekend. whoo hoo!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

i like to move it, move it! day 3

okay, maybe that is a slight exaggeration, but the shredding is going pretty well. . . i can feel my endurance improving, but i also feel my pecs, my glutes, my quads, eh! and unfortunately, drinking 64 ounces of water requires a lot of squatting (sorry, overshare) so i'm getting a work out all day!

seriously, this is something that i can fit into my schedule, jillian keeps it moving and i may not even hate her after 30 days!

so let this be an encouragement to you. . . shredding is doable! (not fun yet, but i am hopeful)

and day 3 without diet coke?? not as bad as i thought it would be!


day two in atlanta was more interesting than day one. not that going to the target superstore and IKEA is a bad way to spend the day!! throw in a little cheesecake factory action and you've got yourself a winner of a day! it's always interesting when half of atlanta tries to blow away, too. the serious bad weather stayed a bit to the north, but we kept getting texts about the weather back home the entire time we were in IKEA. . . a mom and her 9 week old baby died in a tornado that day in murfreesboro, so it was a bad day for tennessee.

the hubster made it through 1/2 way through the showroom. you should have seen his face when he realized there was still another floor to see!!

later, we drove all over downtown atlanta in the middle of a thunderstorm with lightning blazing all around us. it would have been helpful to remember that we had a GPS on our cellphone at this point in our trip rather than the afternoon we were LEAVING atlanta. it only took us about 45 minutes to get to the buckhead diner in (ahem) buckhead, which should have taken less than 20 minutes. oh well, at least i'm not married to someone who won't stop to ask for directions!

the food was worth waiting for and we had a great meal. (seriously, i think i ate my way through atlanta!!) 

saturday morning was still a bit blustery, but at least it wasn't raining any more! we spent some nice unhurried time at the hotel enjoying a killer breakfast buffet (again with the eating) and then began our day at a suit store where the hubster and boywonder got a seiously great deal on a suit for each. my baby has a real big boy suit! i about cried.

i really did about cry. it took them flippin FOREVER to pick something out, and then daggum ETERNITY to get measured for tailoring. i swear, bamagirl and i ran out of places to shop in the area and ended up chilling out in the car. zzzzzzz. they returned and we (finally) proceeded on to a late lunch at pf chang's (my all time favorite, any city, anywhere, anytime).

we took our mapquest directions, took a big breath and headed back downtown to go to the coke museum. i'd always heard it was really cool. it was. awesome artwork, amazing memorabilia, cool history, entertaining/informative videos and a rockin assembly line. highlight of the tour was the tasting room with over 60 different soda varieties from every continent (well, i'm not sure about antarctica, but you get the picture). most of the flavors were really good (mango, lemon, creme soda, etc) but if you're ever in italy, you must certainly avoid this: 

no doubt, the worst thing i've ever encountered. i'd rather drink cow's liver puree with a robitussen chaser. for real. carbonated nastiness. i'm just sayin.

and bamagirl agrees, although i missed the aftertaste face. this was during. should have seen it after. i'm. not. kidding. not. pretty.

highly recommend the coke museum. cool stuff and tasty!

this got us yelled at by the security guy. "take the picture and get down!!"

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

sweatin day two

i've been a member at curves for over a year. i'm all about the "thirty minute workout," but i have to tell you that jillian and her 30 day shred is the real deal. i'm sweating, burning and working it, but not about to die. it's the same theory as curves in that you are working muscles in bewteen keeping the heart rate up. . . only jillian is working small muscles (like bicep curls with hand weights) while working the large muscles (deep knee lunges). killing (emphasis on the killing) two birds with one stone. about the time you think you can't take it anymore, she switches to a couple of minutes of cardio (jumping jacks, jumping an imaginary jumprope), and then a minute or two of abs, then the circuit starts over. 

i just finished and i am sweaty, but feeling energized. my pecs hurt (from yesterday) and my quads are a bit sore, but overall, it feels good. and seriously, it's less than 30 minutes. 

i know it's only day two, but i'm going to go take some measurements and see where i am in thirty days. it can't hurt (well, not too much). and if nothing else, i'm on a water diet. . . meaning i'm shunning diet cokes.

now if that doesn't kill me, nothing will!!

Monday, April 13, 2009

shredding. day one (updated)


ummm my shoulders are beginning to ache and i feel a killer headache coming on. note to self. drink lots-o-water BEFORE the workout. but for now, i'm sucking down the water to try to flush the whatever it is your muscles leak out when they cry.

and speaking of crying. . .

ummm. yeah. i'm getting a grip. and i'm not crying. (well, we'll see what happens when i try to get out of bed tomorrow.)

*original post*

okay, i lived. but ask me tomorrow when i can't feel my arms. 

i will be drinking my obligatory 64 oz of water (slosh). only 3 more water bottles to go!

it's nice to know that i can hang in there without having a heart attack, and that if i keep it real, i'll see results. not bad for a 26 minute workout! 

grillin in the midst of vacationing

as i go about recollecting our weekned in atlanta, i'm taking a brief spell to participate (tardily) in tina's grillin' goodness, just a random little get to know someone better. you can check out tina's blog in case you're up for some more randomness...

1. What's one of the best things you've seen lately?

well, it's been awhile since i've seen boywonder and bamagirl duking it out in public. being siblings just 18 months apart, they oftentimes get into it, but haven't lately since boywonder left for college. and every other time they've had extended time together, the boy has been recovering from major surgery (hence the little vacation-ette in atlanta). so it was super great to see them fighting again. (but it was all in fun!)

2. Has Spring brought you something you don't like?

other than taxes, not really! i am blessed to be allergy-free. and in a pollen factory like our neck of the woods in a valley, it really is a blessing!!

3. What kind of sandwiches do you like?

I'm not a fan of sandwiches in general, like i would never think to make myself a sandwich for lunch if i was hungry. but if i'm going to eat one, i like a simple turkey on wheat with lettuce tomato and mustard. hold the mayo, please!

4. Do you carry GermX with you at all times?

I do not, but the hubster is obsessed! after the "meet & greet" at church?? out comes the bottle. and a quick squirt and we're all good. i carry one in the car for yukky encounters. but for the most part, i'm not a huge germophobe.

5. Does each person in your house have their own hamper or do you have a central hamper for everyone?

i have two teenagers. so the hubster and i have one in our room, and the kids have a floor. seriously, they each have a hamper, but the floor works better. clean clothes on one side of the room, dirty ones on the other. i'll probably not be winning mother of the year anytime soon, but that's okay. i gave up that fight about laundry a long time ago. i have three hampers in the laundry room, so as people bring down their stuff, they can sort as they go.

6. How often do you balance your checkbook?

balance a checkbook?? do people still do that? i keep up online pretty regularly. if i need to balance my checkbook, i just open a new account! LOL (except i'm not really kidding)

7. What's the hardest thing you've done lately?

hmmmm. not alot is what i would classify as "hard" but i would say that shepherding my children through a betrayal has been an exercise in what it looks like to live our faith out. what it looks like to forgive. how to forgive someone who has hurt someone you love. having standards and boundaries. good teaching moments. i guess it's never easy when your children's hearts are involved, and it's painful to watch them live life and get hurt. 

8. Are you a texter?

omg, u bet i am! i have teenagers, remember?

Friday, April 10, 2009

a little family time

i am happy to report that i am with my family on a much-needed little vacation-ette to beautiful atlanta, georgia. well, i'm sure it it wasn't torrentially raining right now, it would be beautifuller, but since i'm not enticed to do laundry (as if you need to entice me, why you can't keep me from the piles of laundry that mysteriously appear on a daily basis!!) or clean (again, try to pry that swiffer from my fingers... i dare you!). it's just good to get away!

we stopped by UTC to have dinner with boy wonder and his girlfriend. we ate at a lovely place in the historic bluff district. the place is managed by an awesome staff (and i say that because they were brilliant enough to hire boy wonder) and the food was great. then it was over to his dorm to pick up his stuff and off we went.

we slept in this morning and managed to miss the full (and by full, i am talking made-to-order omlettes, french toast, pancakes, bacon, sausage, and of course grits), FREE breakfast by ten minutes. we were able to scrounge up 4 bowls and pounced on the cereals before they too were carted off. we won't make that mistake again tomorrow!

since it's raining today, we are going to head over to IKEA, sort of a house and garden amusement park. the bamagirl is very interested in decorating her dormroom, so we'll go experience that (and it should be an experience because boy wonder and the hubster are going, too) and then maybe head to the mall (because we don't have malls where we live, afterall. i mean not ones big enough to be classified as their own cities!!) and to a movie. gotta love it. head to a new city and do all the stuff (well, almost) that you can do from whence you came.

tomorrow we have more exciting plans. really. we do.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

should be sleeping

story of my life. 

i can't sleep.

and i am border line panic attacking these days. 

too. much. on . my. plate.


my 30 day shred DVD arrived in the mail today.

great. so now i can have a heart attack and won't be able to call 911 because i won't be able to feel my arms.

i should wait until i get back from our easter outing to atlanta before beginning my 30 day challenge.

but maybe i'll do it tomorrow. . . 

nah. . .

it'll just prolong the pain. 

monday morning. shred time.

and maybe that will burn a little stress.

and then maybe i'll be able to sleep.

now there's an idea.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

dogwood winter


in april.

mr. tulip. you were wise to wait for spring. shoulda waited longer.

snow capped japanese maple

bah! i want my spring back!

i'll be covering the plants tonite, and then hopefully, putting out the plants for the garden. april 15 is typically the "green light" day. and i'll be bankin on it.

chill out, tender columbine!

enough of winter already. and if you're not gonna snow enough to close school?? well then, why bother?!!

be still my bleeding/freezing heart!

Monday, April 6, 2009

life. seriously

I wanted you to know about this publication I’m a part of called Serious.Life Magazine. They just published a new issue today, and I am in their Featured Blog Directory. It’s a very high quality magazine… you’ll really like it.

The magazine includes a lot of great content from bloggers you’ll appreciate, as well as great features, photos and other content. The magazine is owned and published by a family who have seven kids, three adopted and one who has Leukemia ( The magazine gives away a bunch of ads to charities and ministries. Besides great articles on interesting people, there is a lot about family, adoption, personal finance, spiritual life, humor… all sorts of “life” topics.

Again, the subscription is FREE, and I know you’ll enjoy the magazine, so take a minute to check it out and sign up to get future issues.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

ode to the dogwood

i was pondering the dogwood, as we heralded the beginning of the 49th dogwood arts festival on friday. after more rainy days than not over the past few weeks, the beginning of the festival was greeted with cornflower blue skies and balmy spring temperatures. just a spectacular spring day.

the dogwoods are in full bloom, meaning they've transformed themselves from a little ball of husks to beautiful white (or pink) petaled blooms. it almost looks like snow is kissing the trees as you drive down the streets.

i've been a fan of dogwoods since moving here in the early 80s when i ventured south from the frozen tundra in order to attend college in a campus that would not be buried beneath snow for half of the school year. i experienced my first dogwood spring that year, and was captivated by their beauty.

i have also been interested in their transformation, as the dogwood doesn't have a typical bud blossom and explode from there. it's a slow process that i've enjoyed watching over the last two wet weeks.

did you know that there's a christian legend that claims the cross used to crucify Jesus was constructed of dogwood? apparently, the dogwood tree in Jesus' time was larger and stronger and was the largest tree in Jerusalem. after his crucifixion, Jesus shortened the dogwood and twisted its branches so it could never be used for the construction of crosses.

He also fashioned the bloom into a representation of the crucifixion—the four white petals are cross-shaped, representing the four corners of the cross. each bears a rusty indentation like it had been impaled by a nail, and the red stamens of the flower represent Jesus' crown of thorns. in the fall, the brilliant red berries and red-tinged leaves represent his blood.

the term dogwood winter is one which we are well familiar with in these parts. two springs ago, we experienced such a hard frost in the spring that not only did the dogwood blooms get zapped, but all of the new tender leaves were killed overnight. i remember raking dead black leaves off our lawn that april, and it took a heavy toll on our bee popluation and our trees took an entire year to recover.

wouldn't you know. after three glorious spring days, the forcast is not for just dipping temperatures. they're calling for snow. oh, how i hope they're wrong!