Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Weighing the Good & the Bad

Yesterday when I was at Balanced Life, I took a photo of 5 pounds of fat. I put a quarter next to it for reference. Then, I took a photo of 5 pounds of lean muscle. WOW.

The exercise routine they've set me up on will help me turn all my fat into lean muscle. Woohoo!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Next step in the journey

Well, I took the next step in my journey today and boy, was it painful!! LOL~I joined "Balanced Life" today. It is a local, for women only, nutritional and fitness center. I did two, slow rounds on the fitness equipment today and boy am I feeling it! It's going to be slow going for me, thanks to my painful spine, but slow-going is better than no-going, right? I need to dig out my back brace...the one I'm supposed to wear daily...and take that with me. I will probably stick with one round on the equipment until I get some strength in my back. Every part of me got measured...including my ankles! Then, I had a Body Composition Report. I learned that I have 47.2% body fat (UGH!) and 52.8% lean muscle (YAY!). I also learned that I am dehydrated and need to drink lots more water. (UGH!). My target weight loss goal is 76.2 pounds. Holy cow! lol For me, a really cool part about this place (besides the absence of men!) is that the owner is a Christian family and they blast upbeat Christian music for you to workout to. I think that's awesome!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Craftaholics Anon

Craftaholics Anonymous

12 Step Program

Newly Revised to 13 Steps

© 2001 by Shirley Thomas @

1. I will not stuff craft supplies in every corner of my house.

2. I will not keep nine projects going at one time.

3. I will not pick up more buttons, lace or fabric when I have a ton at home.

4. I will not let my crafting area look like a condemned area.

5. I will not relegate the kitchen table to crafts.

6. I will not attend craft shows just to pick up more ideas.

7. I will not stock up on more craft supplies just because they are on sale.

8. I will not go off on a tangent when anyone mentions that little word "import ".

9. I will not let my crafting distract me from fixing dinner.

10. I will not stay up all night crafting.

11. I will not save dryer lint, empty cereal boxes, detergent scoops, etc.

12. I will not buy every craft magazine I see.

13. I will not make promises I cannot keep. See you at the craft show.

Having too much fun around here

Brrrr....It's cold today! 19*! And, it looks like we might be getting a good snowfall starting tomorrow. It's about time! lol The newspaper said that our year to date average of precip is 1.12" and we've had almost 5.00" of rain so far these first couple of weeks of Jan. Ugh! I'm ready for some snow!!

I've been super busy cleaning out the master bedroom closet. It's a walk-in and my goodness does it hold a lot of stuff!! Ha! That is where we hid all the clutter over the holidays. I spruced up our master bath with plush rugs and a few other neat things. This morning, Fred said being in our nice, clean bathroom made him feel like he was on vacation! lol Now, I've got to tackle our bedroom, which is where I put all the extra stuff from the closet! I've found lots of stuff to give away, so I'm excited about that! I even convinced Fred to part with a few ties and a ball cap! It's a miracle!! lol

The chemo pills are working great for Snoopy's skin ailment. Gosh, they're expensive! $210 a month. Gulp. But, he was so miserable before. His hair was falling out and he was digging himself to the point of infection. Poor baby.

Tonight we are going to a "banquet" of sorts. Every year, our church has an offering contest between the men and the women. The offerings go to Mother's Memorial, which buys appliances for our foreign missionaries, supports Bible School scholarships and more. So, which ever side loses the offering contest has to serve dinner to the winners!! The ladies won last year so we are looking forward to chilling out tonight while the men do all the work! Woohoo! We also will be treated to entertainment, etc. Can't wait!

The year before, the ladies lost. We had SO much fun putting on the dinner! I decorated the fellowship hall with rusted out car parts, including an old bumper. We hung rusty bed springs and tools from the ceiling with fishing twine. The table center pieces were rusty paint cans, etc. filled with weeds. All the ladies wore flannel shirts, those muu-muu housecoats and slippers, etc. Some had rollers in their hair. LOL Then, I printed up a menu. The front read "Road Kill Cafe". Inside the menu were choices like Awesome Possum, Wheels and Grease, Cluck & Worms and tons of other really gross names. The men HAD to order off that menu and they had NO idea what they were getting!! Other options were a pick and a shovel (fork and spoon), so if they didn't order those things, they didn't get any silverware!! It was hysterical!! We had a visiting minister who is so deadpan serious and he was so afraid to order off that menu that he only ended up with mashed potatoes, green beans and a spoon! No meat, no bread, etc. It was so funny!

For entertainment, we did some "You might be a redneck..." jokes that were personalized for our congregation and we had a pig calling contest! Too much fun!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Winter came & Clutter left!

After 5 or 6 straight days of rain, it's finally gotten cold and we got a little bit of snow. Tonight, the temp is 11*. Thanks to all the rain, homes have flooded and roads have been closed. The week of rain and darkness was really getting to me!

Yesterday, I spent hours sorting through my scrapbooking supplies, crafty things, etc. Some of it hadn't been unpacked yet from our move. I could NOT believe all the supplies I had in boxes. It's embarrassing. This is some of the stuff I got rid off (some of it had already gone out to the trash & missed the photo opp. lol).

In case it doesn't look like much, that pile on the left is 4 feet high!! In all those boxes, I found over 50 packages of UNOPENED stickers!!!! OH my gosh! Now, for those of you who know me well you probably know that I LoVe stickers. And for all those packages that I found, 95% of them were purchased on clearance. But, the truly sad thing is that they've in boxes for more than a year. Unorganized. Unused. Unappreciated. So, what's the point, you know? I got a big laundry basket and started throwing the stickers in that basket as I came across them. Then, later on I organized them all in my sticker binder. And, guess what!? Today, instead of buying Valentine cards, I made them and used up about 7 packages of those stickers!! Ye-haw! LOL

I LoVe getting...and being...organized!

Only 200 more boxes to go!! LOL

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Weird winter

This has been the weirdest winter around here! For the most part, it's been very warm with little snow to speak of! And that is NOT a typical Indiana winter! We've had enough rain to make us think we need to go buy a boat to get around in! When it rains for days on end, all I want to do is sleep! Which is exactly what I've been doing this week. I slept 12 hours last night alone and just got up from a 3 hour nap! Geesh!

I'm throwing my body into shock...I started taking a multi-vitamin today. Plus, since I've been sick for months on end, I'm taking extra Vitamin C and drinking Boost, a nutritional drink. I intend to get healthy!! I'm still waiting to get a promised call from the dietician. It's been 2 weeks. Maybe I should call and see what's up. I'm ready to get my first appointment scheduled!

For those of you who know my beloved 10 year old Black Lab, Snoopy, he has suffered terribly with some type of skin allergy the past few months. We've tried everything- a special diet from the vet, special shampoo from the vet, shots, creams, etc. Nothing. Last week, he got started on a drug that is used by chemo patients. I'm not sure how it helps people, but it has worked wonders on him the past 7 days! The vet said if it helped, he'd take it the rest of his life. The only downside is the cost- it's $7 per pill! But, seeing as how Snoopy is our only child, we consider it worth it!

Snoopy, back in the spring

Friday, January 12, 2007

Breaking Your Bonds

Whether your weakness is overeating, substance addiction or simply well-worn patterns of poor personal maintenance, you are in bondage and unable to lead the life God intended for you until these things are dealt with. God has an awesome plan for you, but it requires you to learn the power you have as His child and begin exercising it. You can break out of old patterns that are destructive and start living the new and exciting life of freedom that God has for you. This is a terrific responsibility, and some people fear it. We may instead prefer the ease of our familiar bonds. A prisoner who feels safe in his cell may stay in it, even when we fling open the door to his freedom.

I have discovered that only one thing is more frightening than change, and that is the thought of never changing.

Genuine and permanent change concerning the truth about why we are not taking care of ourselves may require some deep soul-searching, and not everyone is willing to do that. Only the truth sets us free (John 8:32) but truth is not always easy to face.

In fact, facing the truth about ourselves is one of the bravest things we can ever do.

Soul-searching, facing truth, and making necessary changes will be unbearable, so long as you try to "bear" it yourself. The bonds are too strong, and the powers arrayed against you too formidable. Only God is strong enough to lift that burden.

"But they that wait up on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint." ~Isaiah 40:31 (NKJV)

~Joyce Meyer

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Truth About Willpower

"You know willpower. It's that thing that makes us dismiss the chocolate fudge sundae that's sitting in front of us, though every cell of our bodies screams for us to dig in. Willpower is that thing that CEO's and professional athletes tell us they use to trounce the competition.

Willpower sure sounds like a great thing. We are led to believe that we have enough of it to fight off every temptation that comes our way. And sometimes it works. But let me tell you a little secret about willpower. Willpower is your best friend when things go well, but it's the first friend to check out when you get weary.

The Bible says we are to be led by God's Spirit. We are never instructed to be willpower-led, we are told to be Spirit-led!

Willpower and discipline are important and vitally necessary to a successful life, but willpower alone won't be enough. Determination gets you started and keeps you going for a while, but it is never enough to bring you across the finish line.

"Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit says the Lord of hosts" ~Zechariah 4:6 NKJV

Now, what happens if, instead of turning first to willpower in your time of need, you turn to God instead? God releases His power into your willpower and energizes it to bring you across the finish line. Willpower does not get the credit for our success, God does.

Willpower and determination will get us started, but they've been known to quit in the middle and leave us stranded.

God never quits in the middle.

~Joyce Meyer in "Look Great Feel Great".

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


I am reading an awesome book by Joyce Meyer called "Look Great Feel Great." I love this part under the topic of "The Wisdom of Investing in Your Health": "I hope to reach many different types of people with this book. One group is the people who have given up on themselves, who consider themselves so little that they've stopped caring if they are tired, overweight, or sick, or if life passes them by without them ever enjoying it! In fact, some of them have given up on everything! They think it is easier not to expect anything good than to expect and be disappointed once again.

In truth, things aren't easier when you give up, because you then have to spend the rest of your life feeling like a failure and making excuses to God for why you aren't using the gift He's given you. What if your mother gives you a beautiful painting but you never get around to framing it? Every time she comes over, you feel guilty, bad, and lazy. You make another excuse, but deep down you know the truth is that you just do not care enough to do it. Well, guess what? God's coming around every day. He knows and sees everything, so it is time to stop making excuses and start making the most of the life God has given you.

Taking care of your life is not an indulgence." ~Joyce Meyer

Just one thing

Are you always dogged by the fear of failure and the sense of worthlessness? Yes? Me too. But I must hide it well as I can recall someone at church asking me "Don't you ever struggle with anything??" And I can remember saying that yes, I did; but I remember thinking, Oh honey! You have NO idea!! lol I guess this goes back to an earlier entry where I mentioned that my DR told me I put myself at the bottom of my priority list. I have learned that you can only cram so much stress down inside you before it starts manifesting itself in some other form.

Think of all the things in your life that cause you stress. You ( and I) can eliminate a lot of stress by cutting out just one thing from our lives that isn't bearing any fruit. This can be a hard task!! What am I going to eliminate?? Hmmm...thinking...I think I'll start with clutter. I have a lot of clutter and that is SO stressful! Clutter is a type of security for me...however, truthfully, it's extremely stressful!! I will go one room at a time and start getting rid of things I don't really need. The hardest part for me, though, will be not filling those spaces back up with new clutter!

What one thing are you going to eliminate to ease your stress level? Let me know!

Tuesday, January 9, 2007


"Come to the edge."

"We can't. We're afraid."

"Come to the edge."

"We can't. we will fall!"

"Come to the edge."

And they came.

And he pushed them.

And they flew.

~Guillaume Apollinaire

When I read this, just for an instant, it took my breath away! I reread it, but when I read it that second time, the words had changed and I saw in my mind's eye:

It's time to make changes in your life.

I can't. I'm afraid.

It's time to make changes in your life.

I can't. I will fail!

It's time to make changes in your life.

And I said OK.

And I started the journey.

And I succeeded!

Why the journey?

I'm not beginning this new journey just because it's a new year. I'm beginning this journey because I'm tired of being less than God intended me to be! A little history for those of you who don't know it...I began married life in 1993 and only a couple of months after the wedding, I started having lots of "female" problems. I got sicker and periods, weight gain and more and went from DR to DR looking for help. Would you believe it took 8 years to get the diagnosis of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome? PCOS messes with your insulin...which causes the weight gain and a myriad of other symptoms and by the time I was diagnosed I had enough insulin in my body for 5 adults!! I'll save my journey through infertility, through PCOS treatment, etc. for another post. But when I was diagnosed in early 2001, I was at my highest weight ever. I'm not quite ready to post that number yet...maybe in the future. =) Once I started treatment ( I take meds that I'll have to take for the rest of my life), I quickly dropped about 20 pounds and I vowed I'd never again weigh what I weighed in early 2001. I needed to lose about 75 more pounds.Well, 6 years later, here I am. The past 6 years have been filled with lots of stress, death, illness, a move, a personal diagnosis of a degenerating spine and a spine full of arthritis and more. Did I mention I'm only 35? At a DR's appt. last week, I was weighed. I was shocked to see that I not only weighed that dreaded number from the past, but I had added almost 7 pounds on top of that! I spent lots of time talking with my DR and that talk has set in motion my "life" makeover. No, this blog isn't going to be just about weight loss, but that's part of my "life" makeover. My DR sat knee to knee with me and looked me in the eye and said, "Michelle, you handle things in your life daily that are much bigger than your weight issue and you handle those things with grace. You are very capable. You can do this too." I told him that my weight issue (coupled with the ovarian disease and chronic spinal pain) seemed insurmountable to me. He told me that yes, I am concerned about my weight, but I put everything else and everyone else in front of myself. That I consider myself the least important. Wow. I never thought about that. Do you value yourself or do you put yourself at the bottom of the totem pole? If we don't take care of ourselves, eventually, we won't be able to take care of anyone else either.

Let the journey begin!

Wow! I cannot believe very own blog! lol I'd never thought about having a blog before, but after inspiration from a new friend, Alison, I decided to give it a whirl. I thought it would be a fun way to keep in touch with friends and family, because our lives seem to get busier and busier. But, I'm also doing it for another reason. I'm beginning a "life" makeover and I figure if I share the journey, there will be some accountability involved. But I'm also hoping that something I read, something I hear, something I do, etc. will be a blessing to someone else...will inspire someone else to be the best they can be! Let the journey begin!