Monday, July 30, 2007

Let your Yes be Yes and your No be No

I learned today, that people rely on the information you give them and that they have expectations based on what you tell them. Profound, I know...

Today, I told my boss I was going to lunch from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. today and he believed me (sarcasm/tongue in cheek). I had to wait 15 minutes for my lunch partner, so we actually left at 11:15 and got back at 12:15 so I was late getting back to my desk, even though we hadn't left campus until 11:15. (I was still technically on the clock, just away from my desk.)

The point is, my boss had been waiting to go to lunch until I got back. Truth be told, I actually got back to my desk at 12:25 pm because of a bathroom break and mailrun upon my return. I guess he was extra hungry, so he said something to me about it, asked if I had taken an extended lunch, and I said yes, and then I had to send him an explanatory email (he didn't make me, but I felt like I should). He was very polite about the whole thing, but I could tell it had annoyed him, however minutely. I would be annoyed too if I were him. I get cranky if I don't eat when I'm expecting to.

The moral of the moment is this: if you say you're going to be somewhere at a certain time, make sure you are, or make alternative arrangements and let the other party know. It's polite.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Mom and Dad McKee

My parents are coming to visit us this weekend and I couldn't be more thrilled! Well, maybe I could...but I'm really excited!!!! Happiness is knowing that people love you and you love them back.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bilbo Baggins on Getting Older and Being Left Behind While Frodo Goes on His Own Adventures

I sit beside the fire and think
of all that I have seen,
of meadow-flowers and butterflies
in summers that have been;

Of yellow leaves and gossamer
in autumns that there were,
with morning mist and silver sun
and wind upon my hair.

I sit beside the fire and think
of how the world will be
when winter comes without a spring
that I shall ever see.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood in every spring
there is a different green.

I sit beside the fire and think
of people long ago,
and people who will see a world
that I shall never know.

But all the while I sit and think
of times there were before
I listen for returning feet
and voices at the door.

For the "Lord of the Rings" Fans

Resolve and Commitment as discussed by characters created by J. R. R. Tolkien from his book The Lord of the Rings

The following is a conversation between Gandalf the Grey, Gimli the dwarf and Elrond the elf before the Fellowship leaves to take the Ring to be destroyed.

'The further you go, the less easy will it be to withdraw; yet no oath or bond is laid on you to go further than you will. For you do not yet know the strength of your hearts, and you cannot foresee what each may meet upon the road.' (Gandalf)

'Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens,' said Gimli.

'Maybe,' said Elrond, 'but let him not vow to walk in the dark, who has not seen nightfall.'

'Yet sworn word may strengthen quaking heart,' said Gimli.

'Or break it,' said Elrond. 'Look not too far ahead! But go now with good hearts! Farewell, and may the blessing of Elves and Men and all Free Folk go with you. May the stars shine upon your faces!"

Complain Not

I was watching Joyce Meyer preach this morning on TV as I was eating breakfast. She talked about growing as a Christian and training yourelf not to complain. She made some really valid observations and points I'd like to share with you. But first let me boldy proclaim that this is an area of my life that I am currently struggling with...

I have determined that I really don't have anything worth complaining about compared to people in third-world countries. I should be counting my blessings. The struggle against the flesh will be consistant, as long as we are alive.

Joyce said a couple of things that really stuck out in my mind. Kudos to Joyce!

After she pointed out the fact that we don't really have anything worth complaining about as compared to people in third world countries she went on to talk about the flesh and its desires and how those desires come about.

The first thing she said was that if you feed the desire of the flesh, that is the food it will come to expect. In other words, if you consistently feed it trash, that is what it will come to salivate over and desire.

The second thing she said that when we complain and give in the flesh in the process, we are giving the devil a foothold in our lives.

She was preaching from Romans 8. One important thing to note is that if we are saved we are no longer slaves to the flesh, but we are a new creation and now have a choice as to how we live, either to serve our own selfish desires or to deny ourselves and to follow Christ's example. She made a point to say that we should be following Christ's example and not the example of other people.

Food for thought!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Humble Pie

Have you ever opened your mouth and inadvertently inserted your foot? Dang. That's what I did this week on my blog. I had an emotional outburst that could have done more damage than it did. I learned some new things and reinforced some oldies but goodies with this whole retraction process:

1. When emotions run high, reason goes right out the window.

2. Just because you feel something, doesn't mean you should immediately express it, writing, everyone you know.

3. Emotions come and go, but once expressed are hard to take back (like toothpaste out of the tube).

4. That good friends will tell you when you screw up.

5. That it's best to admit a mistake as soon as you realize you've made one.

6. It's good to ask forgiveness when it is appropriate to do so.

7. My sense of logic is consistently impeded by my emotions during hormone surges.

8. I still love my husband, even when we're having issues.

9. Two wrongs, don't make a right (they make a double negative instead!)

10. There are certain things about men and women that are specific to their gender.

I'm sure there are many more things I have learned if I think about it, but these were the ones that immediately came to mind.

Have a great day!

In Appreciation of Friends

A true friend is someone who will tell you the truth in love, even if it's hard to hear it, because they want the best for you and the people you love.

A true friend will tell you if you have a bat in the cave (booger in your nose), or spinach in your teeth, so that you don't walk around like that all day.

A true friend will tell you when you're lookin' a little rough, and tell you it's time to go and get your hair done or to get back to the gym.

A true friend will make time in their busy schedule just to chat, because they know you need to talk.

A true friend listens to your outbursts, sifts through the emotions to the heart of the issue and helps you find and repair the part that hurts.

A true friend will share his/her food supply and not think you are a mooch (but only if you don't do it too often).

A true friend will bear uncomfortable situations to be by your side in your time of need or grief.

A true friend supports you in your crazy ideas (like going back to school) if he/she knows it will be good for you.

A true friend encourages your walk with the Lord, spurns gossip, and looks for the best in the situation when it could be at it's bleakest.

Thanks for being my friend.

Retraction for Perpetually Tired

Dear Friends,

A good friend just sent me an email responding to my post "Perpetually Tired" and under this person's advice I pulled it from my blog. After reflecting on this friend's good advice I realized that it would be more appropriate to handle those feelings privately rather than in a forum that might hurt others' feelings. Even if feelings are legitimate, there is an appropriate forum for dealing with them in turn.

I ask you all to forgive me for my emotional outburst. :)


Thursday, July 19, 2007

In Defense of Harry Potter Fever

I got an email this morning that said my Harry Potter book was ready to be shipped to me. Yes...I pre-ordered book 7. I know...I'm a nerd. I usually go to the movie openers at midnight, the day they open. That's when you get to see alot of fanatic kids and their overindulgent parents at the movie theatre. Good stuff.

I was at Borders Bookstore the other day and I happened upon a book called "Looking for God in Harry Potter" by John Granger. Albeit, I only glanced at it, I was interested to see what Granger had to say, before I zipped over to the coffee bar for my tall, caramel machiato with whipped cream. Though I would like to say I have alot to say about it, my desire for my caramel machiato (with whipped cream) overcame my desire to read excerpts from Granger's book.

So! I looked up the book on Amazon today. Here is the book as portrayed by Publishers Weekly:

"Granger (no relation to fellow brainiac Hermione), a homeschooling Christian father of seven, initially resisted when a friend encouraged him to read the Harry Potter books. But Rowling's novels, sprinkled with literary allusions and strong biblical values, won the classicist over quickly, and he became an avid spokesperson for the series. This book transcends the responses of some other Christian writers (those in support, like Connie Neal, or in sloppy accusations, like Richard Abanes) to offer a serious literary and Christian appraisal of the first five books. Granger begins with the thesis that all humans are "wired" to respond to "stories that reflect the greatest story ever told," including that of Harry's struggle against evil. The best part of the book is Granger's lucid commentary on Rowling's use of language—the insights into character names alone are worth the price of admission—and his keen awareness of word play. Although some arguments are a stretch, and there are a few tiny mistakes (in a footnote, for example, Granger claims that the hero of James and the Giant Peach was named James Potter, like Harry's dad, when it was James Henry Trotter), this is obviously a painstakingly researched book. It is easily the best examination to date of the spiritual legacy of "the boy who lived." Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved."

So, if you have been told that Harry Potter and his creator J.K. Rowling are "of the devil" then perhaps you will give the books a chance and read them for yourself, before you poo-poo them as pagan prose. You might just find a series you will enjoy!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Sometimes You're the Windshield, Sometimes You're the Bug

Do you ever have that paranoid feeling that someone is "out to get you"....Like you are a bug and someone is gunning for you with a giant windshield with your name on it and you just can't fly fast enough to avoid being squashed?

Sometimes I do. It's like that Gary Larson cartoon with those deer talking in the forest. The one deer says to the other deer (who has a large target in red on his chest) "Bummer of a birthmark Hal!"

Sometimes you just have those days where it feels like the world is out to get you...and sometimes you're right.
John 16:33 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

33"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

It's comforting to know that the Creator of the world has everything under control. God wants us to rest in His perfect peace. Life is not all champagne and roses, but God does give us those moments of peace. It's in those moments, when everything slows down, that you can let go, and fall into his presence and really feel comfort and even hope. Hope that circumstances and events and trials are working together for your good... Don't just find that happy place...pray for it. Peace. -Rigel

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Keep Fighting the Good Fight

Hebrews 12:1 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society
Hebrews 12

God Disciplines His Sons "1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

This post doesn't really have anything to do with George Bush, I just liked the fact that he was gesturing, "rock on!" to the crowd. What does the phrase "rock on" have to do with the aforementioned Bible verse? Well...perseverance of course!

My friend Greg emailed me not too long ago. He told me that I rocked. I replied with this picture of George W. Bush that I found on Google images. That's one of my favorite things to do...respond to emails with pictures I harvest from Google. It's really fun. Try it. You likie!

But back to perseverance... Merriam-Webster Online defines perseverance as: "the action or condition or an instance of persevering : STEADFASTNESS ." Keep on, keeping on.....or so the hippie quoth. Fight the good fight. Press onward...

I think of the lyrics to a song I used to sing in church in youth group days, that incredibly, just came to mind. I'm not sure I got ALL the words right, but what I can remember goes like this:

Forgetting what lies behind,
setting our hearts on the prize,
always keeping our eyes on our Lord Jesus.
We're running the race to win,
all the way till the end,
throwing off any sin that would seek to hinder us,
And we'll be faithful to our calling
'cause He is able to keep us from falling.
In His promise, we will trust,
He is faithful to finish the work He began in us.

Cool huh?! Keep on my bruthas and sistas.

Don't Let Anyone Talk Down to You Because They're Stupid

1 Timothy 4:12 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

"Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity."

Timothy said it well. But here is my slightly more cynical/bitter spin on his admonition. "Don't let anyone talk down to you because they're stupid."

Have you ever worked in an academic institution and had someone higher on the food chain talk down to you? I have. You can just feel the condescension oozing out of their pores and dripping off their fangs.

For instance, when you ask a clarifying question, and they reply, "Yes, that's right!" like they are praising their lap dog and about to give you a treat or that they are talking to the "dumb blond"... Ughhhh. I just want to slap them or at least make a rude gesture and shout "Ignoramus!".

Sometimes, it's downright rough being the underdog! Who wants to be treated with disrespect?However! Timothy also eluded to the fact that we are to respond maturely by setting an example in how we live our lives (speech, life, love, faith and purity). Do we HAVE to? The easier thing would be to just b-slap those baddies. Unfortunately, that could get you fired or worse, imprisoned (if they decide to press charges).

I SUPPOSE Timothy is right...I'll be good. At least...I'll TRY to be good.


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Be Wary, Lest We Oversimplify

"Let us who claim to take the Bible as our norm not oversimplify. Our search for truth has by no means ended--although our facile mouthing of formulas could turn away some who are earnestly seeking. We have much to seek and much to learn. We are meant to "hold firmly to the truth in love, and to grow up in every way into Christ" (Eph. 4:14, 15, Phillips, italics mine).
"God is absolute. His Word is authority. Still, it is at the same time anything but cut and dried.

"For the Love of God is broader,
Than the measure of man's mind;
And the heart of the Eternal
Is most wonderfully kind.

But we make His love too narrow,
By false limits of our own
And we magnify its strictness,
With a zeal He will not own."
--Fredrick W. Faber

"As sons of God developing into maturity, we shall expect to be corrected in the process, and though this will be unpleasant, "when it is all over we can see that it has quietly produced the fruit of real goodness in the characters of those who have accepted it in the right spirit" (Heb. 12:11, Phillips). And will reference to the difficulties that are part of our daily education for maturity, Paul says, "Taken in the right spirit these very things will give us patient endurance; this in turn will develop a mature character, and a character of this sort produces a steady hope, a hope that will never disappoint us" (Rom. 5:5, Phillips). That marvelous hope--that we shall yet reach that ultimate end of all creation, fulfillment--maturity in Christ, for "everything that exists...shall find its perfection and fulfillment in him" (Eph. 1:10, Phillips). We shall reach "the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ" (Eph. 4:13, KJV)."---Elisabeth Elliot, The Liberty of Obedience

The Liberty of Obedience

"We may not say now that we have the answers. Questions of how to conduct oneself as a Christian, or how to serve as a Christian, must be answered by life itself-- the life of the individual in his direct, responsible relationship to God. This is a dynamic, never a static thing. And how can we speak at all of the true meaning of conduct and service if we do not speak first and last of love? For it is love which sums up all other commands. The one who loves knows better than anyone else how to conduct himself, how to serve the one he loves. Love prescribes an answer in a given situation as no mere rule can do.
"The man whose life is lived in love does, in fact, live in God, and God does, in fact, live in him."
-Elisabeth Elliot, The Liberty of Obedience

Friday, July 6, 2007

Refiner's Fire

I don't know how the Lord chooses what trials to lead us through, but I do know He does it to mold us into his likeness. It is a painful inferno, our Refiner's fire. Sometimes it seems unbearable. I lay awake and ponder some of the trials God leads us through.

We watch our loved ones get sick and die. Sometimes they are pulled from us unexpectedly in different stages in life...some very young, others old, but we aren't ready for it when it happens. We rarely are.

Some of us suffer financial losses or lose our belongings to flood or fire. We lose precious mementos that cannot be replaced, like wedding photos or beloved home movies, even pets. Many of us have known these losses.

Sometimes the loss is personal. Perhaps it is our own health that suffers, or our own body that is unexpectedly mutilated and we are overwhelmed. How could God allow this to happen? What did I ever do to deserve this?

What indeed?

We live in a sinful world, a fallen world, one separated from God. This world is unholy, dying and diseased, separated from perfect fellowship with God in the garden of Eden. Our reconciliation to God is through the belief in the power of the blood of God's only son Jesus Christ and His forgiveness of our sins. It is only through the gateway of death that we can experience eternal life. We all have that final threshold to cross through and we must each cross it alone believing that Christ saves us, acting as a mediator on our behalf.

While Christ paid the penalty on the cross for our sins, that does not diminish the task that lays before you and I. The task is your life in refinement. And it burns us. Understand that in this world you will face trials of many kinds. But take heart...He has overcome the world. God did not promise us a life of happiness, but he promised to save our eternal souls. We still live in a fallen world.

Christ's suffering on the cross did not erase the present sinfulness of man as a race or cease the inevitable downward spiral of moral decay that grips our planet. God only tells us He loves us and showed us through His death on the cross that He was prepared to suffer the most agonizing death if it meant reconciling us with God and living in obedience to His Father.

His grace is sufficient and God is sovereign. That means that God gives us what we need to survive His refining process and that He knows best on how to shape us into being our best person- in the likeness of His son Jesus. If he didn't care He wouldn't have sent Jesus and He would have left us to die alone. No reconciliation. No heaven, and what's worse, eternal hell.

I cannot pretend to know the pain you are feeling during your refining process. I only know that God personally knows what you are living through, because he has plans for each of our lives. Look at what Job endured, without cursing God! Unfathomable!

When you feel like you are being sifted, it is tempting to want to blame God and curse Him for your suffering. The rain falls on the just and the unjust. The refinement occurs not only in the midst of our suffering but in the way we choose to respond. In the knowledge that God has allowed you to endure hardship in His efforts to refine your spirit and to make you more beautiful in grace and strong in character, can you say that you trust His wisdom? Can you proclaim His sovereignty? Do you still seek His face? Do you recognize God's hand amidst your suffering or are you feeling overwhelmed by loss?

We still have to grieve. We would hardly be human if we didn't feel sadness, even anger at times. But do we dwell in anger leading to bitterness or sadness that leads to despair? Some losses shake us to the core, upending our world and everything we thought we knew to be true and good. Our bearings are gone and we are numb and adrift in a world we thought we knew, but have come to realize its not safe anymore. Anything can happen now. Remember that other shoe? It just dropped, and it flattened me like the house on the Wicked Witch of the East from the movie the Wizard of Oz. My toes are curling just thinking about that. Have you ever had a house dropped on you or someone you love? What did you do? How did you react? What did you say in response?

It is our response that is the true test of our refinement. Have we learned to trust in God's sovereignty? Do we boldly proclaim His ownership of our lives? Do we choose to glorify God in the midst of our suffering by pointing others to Jesus? We find the strength to do this, not in ourselves but in Him. Can you find the strength? Do you see His image reflected in your vessel by the light of His fire?

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Do Over

Have you ever wanted to have a "do over"-A moment in time when you could repeat a scene in your life and do things differently than how you did them the first time around?

Thinking about turning 30 has forced me to look back on my life thus far, and to think about how much time I may have left (on average40 to 50 years) and to take stock of things up to this point. I realize that there are so many opportunities I've let slip by because I was "afraid to try" or "worried about looking dumb." There are also situations in which I didn't comport myself in the best way possible. I've said some stupid things to people that have hurt them. I said them to win an argument, or out of revenge, or just because I didn't think through the ramifications before I opened my big mouth. All moments in my life, I wish that I could re-do.

Take the time I had the opportunity to go para sailing for free...

My in laws, some cousins, aunts, uncles, and my husband and I were at Lake George in upstate NY. My father-in-law was paying for those who wanted to go para sailing because his mother who was in her late 70's early 80's wanted to go. It was one of the things she wanted to do before she died. My mother-in-law and I were the only ones to stay behind because we feared to leave the ground. (Incidentally, we are both control freaks) Everyone else chose adventure, and I chose shopping because I was too chicken to leave the ground. Boy did I miss an experience! The next time I'll choose the para sailing...I hope.

Sometimes, I am compelled not only by guilt and remorse, but by a desire to make up for a less-than-spectacular performance or because I perceive people will/have thought less of me. If I can't look back and say, "that deserved an A" I'm not comfortable. I don't like making mistakes, and what's worse, I don't like it when people point them out to me, rubbing it in like salt in an open wound. Dang. It prompts this weird, yet common response in me....making excuses. "Perfectionist" you say? Perhaps. I do love to critique and to be critiqued. I don't like being torn down. There is a difference between admonishing someone and criticizing them. However, it is through learning through our mistakes that we become stronger people.

By screwing up and being humble and learning from our mistakes we develop character, make amends, forgive, achieve, grow and do better the next time around. We endure the pain of defeat, or we repent of some awful sin we have committed and we grow! It's amazing. Life is a series of negotiations and committments. I want to be a better person and to carpe diem a bit more and hang back on the sidelines less often.

It's like that Tim McGraw song, My Next 30 Years. I leave you with the lyrics to that song:

I think I’ll take a moment, celebrate my age
The ending of an era and the turning of a page
Now it’s time to focus in on where I go from here
Lord have mercy on my next thirty years

Hey my next thirty years I’m gonna have some fun
Try to forget about all the crazy things I’ve done
Maybe now I’ve conquered all my adolescent fears
And I’ll do it better in my next thirty years

My next thirty years I’m gonna settle all the scores
Cry a little less, laugh a little more
Find a world of happiness without the hate and fear
Figure out just what I’m doing here In my next thirty years

Oh my next thirty years, I’m gonna watch my weight
Eat a few more salads and not stay up so late
Drink a little lemonade and not so many beers
Maybe I’ll remember my next thirty years

My next thirty years will be the best years of my life
Raise a little family and hang out with my wife
Spend precious moments with the ones that I hold dear
Make up for lost time here, in my next thirty years In my next thirty years

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Personal Literacy Statement

I have enjoyed reading and writing since I was very young. I still have volumes of phonetically spelled stories I wrote in kindergarten in a scrapbook at home (thanks to my mom). I also have multiple diaries I kept through high school and some into college.

When I was a child, my mother took my sister and me to the library all the time (it was only a short walk from our house growing up). Mom read to us often and I became interested in fiction and storytelling from childhood.

I remember that in 3rd grade we had a book worm made of construction paper that stretched all the way around our classroom. The segments of his body were multicolored circles baring the name of a book, and the child’s name who had read it. I used to get a thrill every time my name and a book would go join the book worm on the wall!

Besides my mom, I had several influential teachers who not only read to us, but also encouraged us to read independently and out loud in class. I remember being transported to C.S. Lewis’s land of Narnia again and again. I visited the prairie with Laura Ingalls Wilder and I solved mysteries with Nancy Drew.

Today I continue to enjoy reading and writing. I read independently whenever I have the opportunity, and I maintain a personal Blog. I find that reading and writing not only relax me by allowing me to vacation from the pressures of life, they also help me to express and process my feelings and give me an outlet for my thoughts. I cannot imagine life without these abilities. They have helped shape my life.


"Goooooossssshhhh!" Have you ever regretted doing a stupid thing? Have you ever woken up the next morning after doing something totally against your better judgement, but something at the time looked like a lot of fun, and ponder, "What was I thinking?!" I did.

Last night I went to see the new Transformers movie at 9 pm after having being awake since 6 a.m. or so. Waking up this morning I am exhausted and I have to go to work. It's going to be another pony tail hair-day. If that's the worst thing I've ever done and regretted I realize that I'm not doing so bad. I liked the movie, but I missed precious sleep.
At the time, I knew I was going to feel this way today. I've done this sort of thing before, only this time, I'm older, wiser, and I anticipated feeling like this today. On days like today, the coffee bean is my life saver.
I've been sitting here typing this post with my toothbrush poised in my mouth, half asleep, thinking about the movie Napoleon Dynamite and how he probably would have gone with Kip to see the Transformers movie too. Kip would have gone on about the "hot babes" and Napoleon would have told him to shut up. Great stuff! The stuff that exhausted day-dreams are made's time for coffee. Have a great day! Peace.

Monday, July 2, 2007

My Final Frontier

When are you too old to try new things? I don't think there is an age where it becomes inappropriate to try new things, but there has to be some truth to the old adage, "You can't teach an old dog new tricks".

The older we get the less likely we are to want to try new things. We become "set in our ways." We have preferences and definite likes and dislikes. We know which restaurants we want to patronize, we have a set schedule for going to the bathroom, and we don't like change.

We like to know that we can expect to go grocery shopping on Saturday mornings, that Friday night is "ladies night" and that someone will always be there to greet us when we come home. But things don't stay the same do they? Change is inevitable.

One day we will reach our final frontier, and begin the last chapter of our lives, but while it remains unwritten, let's seize the day and make the most of it, while we can choose to shape how it will end.

Getting Pregnant for the Right Reasons

Are there definite right and wrong reasons to get pregnant? If so what are they? As I have talked to my husband Jeff about having kids, we ponder the acceptable circumstances for bringing a child into this world. Number one we ask ourselves, "Why?" and number two "When?"

Some possible "Why" answers:
We should have a child because:
We're getting older and we want to see what our children will look like before we die.
We want people to be around to care for us when we die.
We want the experience of having a family.
We want to follow the Biblical directive to "be fruitful and multiply."

Some possible "When" answers:
When we have enough money
When we're old enough
When we're established in our careers and settled in our house
When we're ready to stop being the babies, and to start making babies...:)

How much money is enough?
The biological clock is tickin' here people...
Will I ever be "established?"

When is the right time, and how do we know we are ready to be a parents?
What do you think?

Fourth of July

Do you know why we celebrate July 4th?
Visit these fun websites for Independence Day trivia and fun facts:

10 Surprising Facts About the Fourth of July

Independence Day

Wikipedia Defines Fireworks

Best Fourth of July Movies

Have a Happy 4th!
God Bless!

The Great Weight Loss Adventure AKA, Developing Self-Discipline

Anyone who has ever tried to lose weight has failed, at least once. That's my theory. I need to discipline myself. I have to deny my self gratification and have a rebirth of mind and soul before I can have one in body!

I cannot even tell you the last time I darkened the door of a mall store that sold womens' clothing, but I can tell you what my visit was like. I was unable to fit into anything they sold because I have ballooned to a size 14. A sedentary lifestyle will do that to you! I am too fat to wear the trendy clothes of people in their 20's and still not fat enough to shop in the plus size store. I am at that crossroads in fatness where I can choose to discipline myself and lose weight, or I can give in, say "The heck with this!" and just get fatter and fatter, letting frumpiness envelope me like fat folds.

Unfortunately, I can't just wish it away, or drink diet soda and hope that will be enough (I've tried and it doesn't work). Neither does going to the gym three times a week for a half-hour. I have to develop a new way of where I have the frame of mind that weight loss is more important than school, more important than housework, yard work or even sleep.

The only way I will successfully lose weight and not continue to be fat in my 30's is to prioritize my weight loss goal. I must manage my diet and get regular, vigorous, sustained exercise. I must get regular sleep. There are going to be some serious changes taking place.

"Lean protein and vegetables," is my mantra, followed by, "That which does not kill us makes us stronger"... I'm hoping that's what happens when I strap on my too tight workout clothes (that I have grown out of) and start exercising again in yet another effort to revisit my size 12, and dare I say, size 10 pants and size medium tops.

I don't want to look back on my life and wish I had been thinner! I have already noticed some unpleasant changes in my body and I have to stop this degenerative progression into fatness and obesity before it's too late.

Fatness happens gradually. It starts with small changes in behavior that develop into poor eating habits and a decline in activity, compounded by a change in metabolism. Before long, you're looking in the mirror flapping your arms that hang heavy with clap-fat, counting your chins and grabbing your own love handles!