Getting Healthy… Again… and after having baby… and I'll spare details of how it changes your body!

Remember  Bridget Jones and the stick insects? I’m not one of them. There are mums like that too ya know, or rather “moms” here in the U.S. We’re so bland.

Anyhow, I have lost 2 pounds. That’s right. TWO stinking pounds. I keep going to the gym, I keep trying not to stuff my face. I drink like a gallon of water a day. Is this what leaning towards 30 does to you? I imagine it only gets worse from here. Andy has lost 12 pounds (granted he started working out like 3 weeks prior to me but he also endured an injury that made him take a break).

All this to say, I’m still going. I’m still trying. And I love the way working out makes me feel. Sweating after a good 40 or 45 minutes and then picking up my baby girl, it’s nice. Definitely more energy, and there’s more sunshine these days too. So here’s hoping that two becomes ten, ten becomes twenty and twenty becomes twenty-something (I think ‘ll be happy with 20)!

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Earth "Week"

Right, I know it’s really Earth Day but it seems that everything and everyone around me are making ways for “deals” or festivals that begin Earth Day a full 5 or 6 days in advance. Not that that’s a bad thing, we should all be more aware of what we are doing to help or hurt the environment around us. Tragically I think it’s mostly hype. The green movement has rocketed thousands of companies to put in to effect seemingly green or green stamped practices to get you to buy their stuff.

Really it comes down to us. Do I use cloth diapers? No. So can I preach? Maybe not. (If biodegradable ones weren’t so dang expensive I might buy those!)

But it’s always a good time to think about what you’re doing. Definitely think about what you’re emitting and if you really need that light on or to go through those seven rolls of paper towels in a week (I realize that might be a tad extreme but that message goes to mostly men who seem not to recognize how to conserve any form of paper product).

I am thinking of going completely chemical free on my cleaning products. I do buy the earth friendly type but I know I could totally make my own and be less at risk for baby girl to accidentally drink something that could potentially have her in the hospital.

So at least have a thought this week about what you can do, and try to avoid the marketing messages if at all possible. (No, if you want me to drive my car across the city and then give you money for something I don’t need then it’s not a green initiative that’s really making a difference. It’s probably just an indulgence to Americans). ;)

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I heart chocolate.

Ah, yes, that sweet velvety smooth cocoa goodness that can calm you on a bad day and treat you on a good. It’s sad that today, when there is so much communication, so much seeming transparency in our interactions, that chocolate producers still find it necessary to use unethical practices in the making of this wonderfulness.

If you buy Hershey’s or ever have, please take the time to read this and decide for yourself if you should continue to do so.

It’s sad, and bittersweet, but it looks like until they can change their practices I am off on a quest for a chocolate peanut butter concoction that can rival that dang egg. PLEASE, let me know if you have any suggestions.

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Getting Healthy….Again!

So, yes, I successfully lost 30+ pounds in 2008. Then in 2009 I proceeded to get pregnant and put back on almost all the weight with the exception of about 8 pounds. But I would say now I’m more determined than ever. I want to be able to swim, hike up Stone Mountain, run around the park and more with my little girl. In order to do that I have to get serious all over again!

It is lovely being a mother, so I know all the curves and jiggles are worth it, but now (most) of them need to go. For reals.

My 1st goal is to lose 12 pounds by May 10th. No, that is not far away but it will probably allow me to fit back into my (non-maternity) bathing suit and take an infant water class with Gems before summer officially starts!

Another thing, I LOVE food! With the exception of some meats I am never going to be a huge “eliminator.” I like a variety in my life and as a Southerner of course I have many weaknesses and loves that are full of fat! Diets DON’T work for me. So here is what I did to get some balance and have a healthier attitude about food and weight loss.

Here are my tips (and how I did it before). I’m posting them here for myself and anyone else who might be interested.

1. Hit the gym AT LEAST 3 times a week (Preferably 4-5).
2. On non-gym days take a walk, do some yoga, something to get that body moving.
3. Eat often, but don’t overeat. Snack on almonds, apples, a little peanut butter with crackers, or a yogurt to get you between meals.
4. Love those leafy greens (and often)! Eat healthy salads (think spinach and bitter greens) with dressing on the side. If you want that fattening dressing, go ahead, but dip your fork and use less than half.
5. Eat breakfast! To be honest I would have a bagel with light cream cheese and a large coffee at least once a week, but it didn’t hinder me losing weight because I kept moving and ate healthy most of the time.
6. Maintain a healthy attitude about carbs, don’t neglect them but don’t make them the centerpiece of all your meals!
7. Eat off the kids menu. Sometimes I wanted something with fries, ya know? Ordering from the kids menu is instant portion control. If you’re still hungry get a side of steamed veggies or a side salad.
8. Have a treat night. Don’t overindulge yourself for a whole day so that you feel gross and run-down at the end of the day. But choose a night and split the cheesecake or have that steak (from a restaurant that serves grass fed beef hopefully) ;) .
9. Don’t think, oh, I can’t eat there or I can’t do that. What I learned? Bruster’s has great yogurt and even the unhealthiest places will let you create your own healthy option (no butter, can I get that with mushrooms and spinach instead of cheese? are great)
10. Drink water!!! Keep a bottle on you and refill it and keep refilling.

Okay! Time to start following my own advice. :) If this doesn’t help you or you think I’m crazy, sorry. Like I said, I’m not a dieter and I’m from the South (unhealthy eating is sometimes a requirement)!

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Have a little Compassion…

Name: Jahidul Islam (BD2190180)

Birthday: November 10, 2002    Age: 7

Gender: Male

Region: South Asia

Country: Bangladesh

Program: Kaunia Child Sponsorship Program

Personal and Family Information:
 Jahidul lives with his father and his mother. At home, duties include carrying water, buying or selling in the market and caring for animals. His father is sometimes employed as a seller in the market and his mother maintains the home. There are 2 children in the family.

As part of Compassion’s ministry, Jahidul participates in Christian instruction. He is also in pre-school where his performance is average. Soccer, singing and art are his favorite activities.

Please remember Jahidul in your prayers. Your love and support will help him to receive the assistance he needs to grow and develop.

Community and Project Information:
Jahidul lives on the plains of Kaunia, home to approximately 5,500 residents. Typical houses are constructed of dirt floors, bamboo walls and corrugated iron roofs. The primary ethnic group and language is Bengali.

The regional diet consists of beans, rice and lentils. Common health problems in this area include viral hepatitis, typhoid fever, asthma and malnutrition. Most adults in Kaunia are unemployed but some work as day laborers and earn the equivalent of $26 per month. This community needs health care facilities, educational materials, schools, employment opportunities and income-generating activities.

Your sponsorship allows the staff of Kaunia Child Sponsorship Program to provide Jahidul with Bible teaching, nutritious food, medical treatment, health and hygiene education, safe drinking water, recreational activities, picnics, tutoring, uniforms, shoes and academic support. The center staff will also provide meetings for the parents or guardians of Jahidul.

Please consider and pray about being a part of Jahidul’s life. You could be a huge difference in the life of this child. Click HERE to sponsor Jahidul. This child has been waiting for a sponsor for more than six months. Credit card payment is required to ensure that this child’s wait ends today. Help make a difference in the life of this child, who is anxiously waiting for a sponsor.

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Have a little Compassion….


Today, give a gift to Gifty. At four years old, Gifty lives with her stepfather and her mother. At home, duties include helping in the kitchen and running errands. Her stepfather is sometimes employed and her mother maintains the home. There are 2 children in the family.

Gifty is not presently attending school. Singing and playing house are her favorite activities. She also attends church activities and Bible class regularly.

Your love and support will help Gifty to receive the assistance she needs to develop her potential. Please pray for her. Click HERE if you are interested in sponsoring Gifty.

This child lives in an AIDS affected area. In Africa, the disease has impacted the entire continent, creating a generation of orphans and vulnerable children. God can use you to help ease the pain of a child in desperate need.

IMPORTANT: A CREDIT CARD IS REQUIRED as payment because this child has been classified “HIGH PRIORITY”. This child has been waiting more than 6 months for a sponsor. Help make a difference in the life of this child, who is anxiously waiting for a sponsor.

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Lend a Hand

Although most of us cannot be there literally, there is way to lend a hand in Haiti’s recent crisis. Give to an organization that you know proves themselves to be true and gives the money you donate straight to the people who need it most. Compassion already has workers on the ground in Haiti. If you would like to give, or just learn more about what they are doing, please click HERE.

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Beautiful Life

All of you who are parents out there know…life becomes all about baby. At least for the first few months. I’ve learned so far that you can’t prepare yourself for anything, immense love does come instantaneously and naturally, and it is imperative to keep trusting God.

You never know if you’re making the right decision, you just have to pray and follow your heart. Pretty much like everything else in this life.

It’s scary, because I see the world moving around you and it almost seems to be moving past me. There is nothing I can do or say to make it slow down and fit with the pace my body and brain seem to be permanently resigned to. However, I see some light at the end. I see my baby girl laughing and smiling more, and I know that eventually, not only will I be able to fully return to trying to live, learn, and give as Jesus called me to (not that I have “paused,” rather I have very little people interaction at the moment), but I will be able to bring another little person with me and show her how important it is to care- about people, the world around her, and most of all the God who blessed us with her precious life.

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Growing Up

I always wanted to…

Have it all together
Establish a career
Go back to school
Be financially stable

…first

However, don’t we all know by now God has other plans. I might have free will, but that doesn’t mean I’m always in control. Two days ago I saw the sweetest little face peering at me from the shoulder of another woman. He looked so peaceful, so tiny, so perfect. And I thought okay, I may not ever be ready, I may never have it all together, but this is something God put in my life for a reason. Not only can I give this child all the love I have but God has placed that desire in my heart. To pass on the immense love and grace God has given me, a purpose and a calling, onto another life.

Train s child in the way that he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.
Proverbs 22:6

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Reflections on Judgment

“You lie.”
“Beyonce’s video is better.”
“We are turning this nation socialist.”
“I want Obama to die.”
“He is a horrible person because he said X.”

I feel that somehow all of these are strangely connected. Based in a society that thrives on pointing out flaws and living on broken systems and never wanting to realize something better. In reality it seems that our plight for individual happiness has made us more upset, judgmental, and unhappy than ever. Our fringe groups bash other systems for having no control over their totalitarian terrorist government regimes then accuse Obama of being Hitler? Do they even know or realize that in these other countries the government bodies are actually the ones doing the raping and pillaging? And I’m not just talking money.

In light of all this it seems highly critical and narcissistic for so many people (Americans really) to be focusing on their own likes/dislikes, i.e. judgments, as the only approach to something. Showing no room for compromise or deliberation points to a God complex of being all knowing, which I can’t say I know of any one person who is even close.

Not only does individual effort have to be made to stop the judgments from coming from our own mouths, but a cry of prayer to our Father for intercession and a global softening of hearts towards others who may be different from ourselves. Sound like a big enough task? It is. But just asking God to change our hearts and looking at everything through the lens of our Father God is a massive start.

The deprivation of our world is only made more apparent by our autocratic need to look out for only ourselves or those like us.

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