CC's graduation

CC's graduation
2nd in our class to graduate

Friday, March 26, 2010

Laugh like your in Junior High

Girlfriends are so much fun. But, how often do you really get good girlfriend time in when there is so much going on with children, work, housework, etc. When we typically think of good girlfriend time, you may think of going out for a cosmo... my mommy friends may think of putting on their "nice" pair of jeans and the shinny danskos with a supportive bra with your hair blown dry. Why are the days of heels, full faced makeup with shinny lipstick, push up bras, pretty skirts and wicked hair gone? At least that seems to be the case in my circle (sorry girls... for the most part it's true).

Ok, so I love to play dress up, but that just doesn't happen all too often - especially carrying a 2 year old, up and down stairs and possibly stepping in mud on my way in and out of my car.

So, my version of a fun girls night is just so junior high. "here let me do your makeup" - "ok, I'll let you do my hair" - "let me try that on" AND TAKE PICTURES. When's the last time you've done that with your besties?

If you look closely... you'll see me laughing my ass off (yes it requires me spelling it out instead of the common LMAO, because I truly did). I am so blessed to have a friend that lives close enough for me to bring my case and play makeup for a couple of hours then plan it just right so the husbands could shake their head wondering just what came over their wives, but faithfully took pictures of two women laughing loudly... and most of all - their asses off.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Today is indeed a new day!

Today there are big things on the horizon - I've worked days on end to revamp my old web site. I worked late into the night ensuring there are no grammatical errors, unlinked-links... now the exciting part: post to Facebook and see what comes of it... I can check my counts like a crazy woman to see who looks, who becomes a fan, who is interested... but ultimately it will be hitting my clientelle. I wanted everything in tip top shape for all the pre-show blogging for
"The One"
A premier wedding show at the Sole Repair Shop in Seattle, WA on April 18th from 3-6pm. I'll be there in person... yep - you lucky blogging, Facebook and emailing friends will be able to see me up close and personal. I'll be demonstrating crazy... well not so crazy makeup advice as well as some practical tips to get your skin in high gear before the big day.

Check out the new site: - the colors are so lovely and classic - Burnt red, black, white and shades of grey. My featured picture is of one of my favorite brides, Andrea (Ford) Waterbury.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"I really shouldn't...." - Then don't.

"I really shouldn't..." - then why did you?

My dear friend brought this phrase to my attention upon talking about her mother in the context of food right around Christmas time. She would announce this upon eating the last piece of pizza, brownie, cookie. No one cared, but she obviously needed a group stamp of approval, and continued regardless of a response and had a conscience issue about it... why else would she bring it up? It occurred to me upon reflecting and conversing with my friend that this is downright sin. Announcing that you "shouldn't" be doing something you are going to do anyway is sin.

Since then, I've caught myself doing the same thing. Just not announcing my choices to a group of people. Oh, I really shouldn't stop by micky-d's... but I just want a cheeseburger (300 calories + 12 grams of fat) and I'm on the run... it would just be so easy. Oh, I really shouldn't get that grande mocha (aprox. 470 calories +16 grams of fat)... but the green logo at Starbucks is so alluring and the cups feel so good in your hand. In my mind I was being "diet-ish" - you know, when you kind of put yourself on a " mental diet" when you kind of feel guilty about something you think you should feel guilty about, but honestly don't know the cost of that decision. Do you know how many calories you should be eating per day? Do the above numbers register for you? Do you say, oh... that's a lot? I didn't.

Context: In the past several months, God has brought just a messy mess into my life where I struggle after struggle seeing my sin, the effects it has had on my relationship with God, my family, my husband my friends. If your not struggling with your sin... are you walking with God? God showed me that I was not really walking the walk, the walk, the walk with him. I was "playing" church, family, wife, home, but not walking with Jesus. This is all an aside to say that after dealing much muck that I've been convicted on - this is just the latest and the most physically challenging to say the least.

Damon was in the hospital and quite ill for just about 6 weeks from the beginning of January to mid-February. I looked at myself one day and realized I had gained several pounds. The thought of me walking through the hospital cafeteria to get a meal - on a break from the room crosses my mind. 1. It was a break from the small room we were in and 2. I could "feel" good by the plethora of choices available to me - and Children's cafeteria does have good food. Not only was I over eating to "feel good" - I was over spending. I didn't have $10 per meal budgeted! What was I thinking? Oh... but it felt good. I shouldn't have...

Fast forward to me looking at my belly in February. Yep. Rolls. I was on the loosing streak and just bounced myself back to bigger than I had hoped. I hopped on the scale at my friend's house and was disgusted.

I was also drinking at least ONE glass of wine a day, that was just recently, between December and January, I was having at least ONE margarita with a couple of shots of tequila per day. I shouldn't... but I did.

God really convicted me: my body is a temple of God. What the hell was I doing to it? Well, I got introduced to a couple of things in a really random way and I believe that God truly works in random ways with a huge overall plan that none of us can really see until later.

February 20th, I had run to Costco and yes.... I stopped in *of all places* the "health" area of Costco. They were promoting a supplement and I had seen it before, but this time it clicked with me - it was on sale and I thought, heck, I've never tried anything like this before, so I'll give it 2 weeks and just see what happens. As with anything like this they always recommend a healthy diet as well. I thought that was a little funny, but decided to do it anyway.

February 21st - I started the supplement, I started a new skin care routine and I stopped drinking alcohol. I recorded it on my calendar... just to see what happened. Just to see how long I would stick with it. How long I could "go" with out alcohol.

February 22nd - Monday - I started logging my calories on, using the "my plate" program. I quickly learned just how many calories I was taking in - I was super surprised to see that all the foods I thought were healthy... were absolutely not! Wow - another crazy awakening.

Later in the week, I found out I could "log" any exercise I did. That was really funny to me. I don't exercise. I don't like to go outside and I can't afford a gym. One of my last blogs was about how I love my blankie. Well, my sweet neighbor showed up at my house with her three kids and said... I'm in front of your house... we're going for a walk. Logan started standing in front of the door begging for shoes to be put on his feet and just get OUTSIDE! My 8 year old was having a terrible, terrible day with much crying and I insisted we get outside and just take a walk. He cried the first block, until I told him it was a stress reliever and gave him a goal to race to. When we got back to the house, he had stopped crying and said, "Wow, I feel better, it's just what I needed." Me too buddy.

God reinforced just how important these things were. I viewed exercise as dry and boring, but God showed me that 1. I am enjoying my friend on our walks and Logan gets to see his friends 2. Logan gets his heart ministered to by just getting out - he's now insisted on pushing the stroller the last block (you go Logan) and 3. My big boy loves to get out and race me - this week he raced for video game minutes in 5 minute increments... they added up pretty quick. It's not about me anymore, but I am benefiting from it.

I am now becoming more and more aware of what my body needs and realizing how ignorant I was to calories, fat, fiber, sugar intake. I ate an egg the first day, thinking the protein would carry me through the day - or until the next meal, as I was sure I would be hungry. It was an eye opening experience to find out that the ONE egg I had eaten took up all my cholesterol for the day. How many eggs had I been eating prior to my week of revelation? I had also been eating lots of bacon - duh - bacon is not a weight loss solution, however I did not realize it was maxing my body out on sodium! I walked into Starbucks earlier this week and I was HUNGRY. I used the app on my phone to find out how much that low-fat berry thing I like so much was going to cost me... 350 calories. I couldn't do it. The cost was too high. Luckily, Starbucks had nuts for sale...

When I was having the "I really shouldn'ts..." they were there for a reason. I had a responsibility to explore what that was. I knew that McD's was "bad" for me, but I didn't know why or just how bad. I do now. If I can't remember what I've eaten, I take a picture on my phone so I can log it later.

If your questioning, should I? The answer is usually no. Also, if you make a statement like that in a group setting. Please understand that I will shut your trap with a response that goes something like "no, you shouldn't" - that goes for the rest of you. Hold the "mental dieters" to a higher standard so that one day it will occur to them that they will need to shit or get off the pot. In saying all this, I am not making a judgement in WHAT you are eating, WHAT you weigh or "should" weigh, but rather holding you accountable to what seems to be a conscience issue. In saying this I don't want any of you to be worried about being judged about what your putting in your mouth. That's your business... but if you make it mine, I'll be sure to let you know what I think.

Since February 20th,
  • I've lost over 10lbs.
  • Dropped a dress/pant/underwear size. They were having a great sale at Lane Bryant last week and I thought I should probably go check it out... then it occurred to me that nothing in the store would fit! I'm below my pre-wedding weight (over 3 1/2 years ago).
  • I have ENERGY. Crazy Energy. I feel great.
  • I am aware of my behavior.
  • My skin looks better.
  • I have not had a lick of alcohol since February 20th and have not been tempted. I don't believe I had an "alcohol" addiction, it just tasted good. I do plan on having a cosmo for my birthday next week.

Last night, I was hungry. Really hungry for the first time since I started all this. I choose to go over my calorie allowance. I have been so strict for so many weeks now and my progress has really shown. I decided that for one night, it was ok to fulfill that true physical hunger - my conscience was clean and I ate healthy foods. I will live a life of discipline, but not live a legalistic life with false guilt and "I shouldn'ts...".

This isn't necessarily about me loosing weight, but God has woven this into my life as an opportunity to obey him about the things I choose to put in my mouth.

Don't be like me - pre-February 20th: on a mental diet with "I really shouldn'ts..." I love the learning process - about nutrition, but also a new journey of conviction that is ultimately reflecting the glory of God in my life. This is one area that I can share with authenticity to those around me - with physical results. Jesus showed the disciples his scared hands after his resurrection so they would "see" Jesus and know him. I am glad to follow his example and say, "hey, I am living out what Jesus did... let me show you how he's put his mark on my body" - I hope the same for you - inside or out.

"I shouldn't..." By God's grace... I won't.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Web Cams: the solution to all your cross country relationship dilemas

Ok, so we (I) had the *brilliant* idea to get all the family members - who are out of state, web cams for Christmas... in the name of relationship building, of course. Well, we got every one set up before Christmas day so we could all talk on Christmas... because of course it is a high holy day and if we don't talk... well heaven forbid the thought. But, how great it was going to be - not only talking on Christmas, but doing it face to face!

There was all this hype created by myself with much self-promotion only to lead to awkwardness and many malfunctioning web cams across these United States.

First we called Dave (Ryan's Dad). Ahh... Dave came out not fully dressed to see us and greet us for Christmas and watch the boys open their gifts. Ryan was kind (and wise) enough to have him go change. Again. Not what I had envisioned. Granted, we called at about 9am. Dave is in Florida time: a 3 hour time difference. It makes me sad to think that he wasn't even dressed by noon time on Christmas day. Well... we'll call that a 1/2 success because Grandpa got to see the kiddos open gifts and we had sound.

Jon and Carolyn joined us on Christmas day - Jon my only brother (out of five kids) and my best friend Carolyn, who happened to marry my brother. So, the moment was upon us: time to make, well receive the big call. We all piled onto the couch and viewed my other sisters, my mom and her brother and his wife all crouching around the computer in Monica's room (my youngest sister). It was a disaster. We couldn't hear each other. We could only see each other. My brother was pacing - just out of view of the web cam saying, "oh this is so stressful" - "oh I can't stand it" - "oh somebody do something" - we all said hi on someone's speaker phone and called it a day... well Christmas day any how.

Since the sisters (Lisa and Monica) were already with Mom... there was no need to make an additional 2 calls.

My point: even the *best* of intentions wind up with not such a great result. We're still trying to web cam with the fam, but honestly it's been difficult to nail down a time when some one isn't on the road, too tired to "hook up the equipment" or some other excuse.

Now that we have web cam experience under our belt, here is what I've learned:
1. Always hide the crap you don't want others to see behind your couch so you appear to have a cleaner house than once thought.

2. Create great lighting - a friend who shall remain nameless at this point has taken a picture of herself with a web cam and is excited because she thinks it looks like her "goth days" (that were 15 years ago. That is not the look your going for. Trust me. We want to see your pretty face.

3. If you take a picture of yourself with your web came, please make sure you edit it. Again, good lighting makes all the difference.

4. Have a point of conversation before you start. There is nothing more uncomfortable than having a conversation with some one with out having something to say.

5. If you decide to show off your living space and give tours, please make sure you can hold your laptop in a steady position, as to not make the web cam viewer ill.

6. Watch what you say - you never know who is in earshot and who may be listening, just out of earshot.

I will say, it has been great to see my sisters in real life. I have not seen Lisa for almost two years, so to see her animated and alive... well it was great. My how all their hair styles have changed, their expressions, goals and desires - you just don't get that on facebook.

To summarize: The web cams were a disappointment. Like so many other things... I get hyped up about something I believe will be new and exciting that will surely change your life - and that was clearly not the outcome here.

The intent: good. The outcome: not as expected.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My Blankie

I love my blankie. Yes. I have a blankie. I sleep with it absolutely every night. Not many people know this. If they catch me with one... it isn't the real blankie because I have it always hidden when people come over or I spend the night some where else. Craziness I know. Who else out there has a blankie? One of the books we read to Logan (2yrs) has a line that says: cozy dozy sleeping space. It shows a little boy all cuddled up with his blankie, bear and ready to get to some cozy dozy sleeping. Love it. That's how I feel. All ready for a nap and totally relaxed. It's better than a glass of wine: it's warmer and softer. Better than an anti-anxiety pill... I'm never anxious under it. Nope - I don't even have a favorite pair of pajamas or pillow or jeans. I have a favorite blankie.

I won't tell you which one... you can keep guessing next time your at my house, but it is my favorite thing in my whole house and the most private thing too. Now, I wouldn't let you see my undies, but I also wouldn't let you see my blankie unless you were in total and absolute security in the "circle of trust" - few of you are. But... oh... how I wish I could bring it out when we talk. I'll stop my lovely from talking just to get situated in my blankie. Is anyone else like this? Does any other adult need their blankie to hold them close and tight to sooth them to bed, to get though a tough conversation, to enjoy a movie more? Dam and I even snug on a very regular basis. I love it when he says... "mom, I need to snug" - ahhh snugging with my boys. Logan isn't much of a snugger, but my Damon boy sure is.

More about the blankie. When choosing a blankie for the maximum comfort you need to consider the following: softness, is it totally snug-able and feels oh-so-good on your skin? moldable: does it mold and cling to your body just right? I've tried out a few and mine is perfect for this. Size. Yes, I've tried to be a minimalist on this, but really... larger... but not too large is better. It needs to go up to your neck and down past your toes so it can totally wrap around them when it is extra cold out. Color... well I can't comment on this b/c then some of you might enter into the circle and be able to spy my blankie secret based upon my description and advice here. I will say this: knowing me... you wouldn't guess this as my blankie of choice. Another note about size: you need to decide if you are going to be sharing this blankie with another person AND if that person is an adult or child. Remember: children grow. What once fit me and a toddler... fits me and an 8 year old very differently... I do need to laugh at this point, for it was truly not part of my consideration when my relationship with my blankie started.

Ok... there is a second blankie. Yes, it is a backup blankie when say, perhaps, a child has spit up or puked on the primary blankie. And... it is the blankie I will most likely cuddle up with in front of people.

Sharing: sorry. I don't share very well. If you are cuddled up with my blankie... I will ask for it, but I will always offer something in it's place. I'm kind of polite like that.

Now, I've come to the point where I must sign off and realize I sound quite a bit like Junie B. Jones, but oh! - I must continue.

Please contact me if you would like additional information on what you should consider before starting a relationship with a blankie BECAUSE... a relationship with a blankie is one that will last a long, long time. Trust me... I have strayed and tried a few, so based on my experience and yes my relationship with my blankie, I feel the above is reliable information for the basis of a blankie-adult relationship. I have different criteria for a child's blankie... a different post all together.