Lent Day 31 and 32

I’m sipping homemade ginger tea this morning…so yummy! and thinking about the past couple days…

Friday (Day 31) was the usual Friday coffee party issue…However, it was my departments turn, so I brought fresh veggies and dip that I’d made. The big change that occurred on Friday was the Hungry for Change movie…my husband and kids watched it during the day and I watched it in the evening. To say it changed our thinking is an understatement…It inspired us to change our eating habits for good, not just Lent…I write more about how I spent my Saturday morning on our Simple Spring Cleanse blog: Letting Go of Poor Eating Habits

Friday Menu:

Breakfast: smoothie

a.m. snack: veggies and dip I’d made

Lunch: crackers and the last of the guacamole

p.m. snack: canteloupe

Supper: BLT sandwich on one of those triangle whole grain buns

Dessert: a refined sugar free cookie that one of our friends made to share at movie night

Saturday (Day 32) We were happily surprised with a visit yesterday afternoon from my parents. We talked a lot about food actually, which was cool. We were so lucky growing up to have fresh food from the garden, milk straight from the cow, eggs from our chickens and pork and beef that we’d raised ourselves. I will strive to give my kids as close to this as I can.

My parents eat very traditional foods; but they are learning to branch out and enjoy others. For dinner yesterday I shared our quinoa salad recipe with them. I’m pretty sure my Dad had three helpings of it… 🙂 and Mom had a couple as well. The kids were excited to share this very cool and very good for you food with their grand-parents. It was a really great visit. I’m also only drinking 1 latte per day these past few days…

Saturday Menu:

Breakfast: smoothie

a.m. snack: missed this

Lunch: we juiced some of our yummy fruit

p.m. snack: snacking on veggies!

Supper: turkey breast, spinach strawberry salad with homemade raspberry vinaigrette and Greek quinoa salad with feta and lemon balsamic dressing that we’d made

Dessert: coconut chocolate pudding that I was showing mom how I make and I did sneak in have a hot cross bun that mom had brought! 😛

I made some lime zest water and drank a lot of that yesterday too! Stay tuned for the post for today: Day 33!

Our yummy, colorful grocery shopping trip – this was what we brought home:

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Life is Beautiful

It is the first day of Spring 2012, here in Olds, Alberta.

I rushed along, stuck behind someone who thought the speed limit through town is 20KPH, late and no parking spot and so many things demanding my time. I felt the cold on my hands where my forgotten gloves should have been. My body aches from yesterday’s tough workout and my sluggish brain complains of the lack of caffeine that my sleeping in resulted in from only one latte today…

There are many things to grumble about, there are many changes to be afraid of, there are many things that don’t go the way I’d planned. And yet…I have it all:

1. My beautiful family who give me reason to press on

2. A warm bed and loving husband in a house in a quiet neighbourhood where my family is safe

3. Parents who allowed me to spread my wings and fly wherever my heart takes me

4. Friends who love me the way I am, who are always there when I fall

5. A job that lets me do what I do best: help people, every day

6. My body that is strong and able to feel the cold and the sore muscles because I am alive and well

7. Dreams that may seem crazy to some but I believe in them anyway

8. A hope and faith that there are so many more special moments and days ahead of me
I read an email early today that said: “Spread love everywhere you go: First of all in your own house … kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness.” ~ Mother Teresa and then I saw this video:

All of these thoughts came flowing out of my heart and I had to write. I had to share. Regardless of the consequences. I just had to share in whatever way I can.

Life IS beautiful…We have it all

Lent Day 28

The sun was shining today, and the wind felt a little cool…spring is trying so hard to push through and arrive!

The girls and I had a great work out today: Nike Training Club app on my phone. 2 kick-butt mostly lower body 15 minute circuit style work outs. Let’s just say those damn burpees were involved so it wasn’t easy, OK!!??

I planned better for eating today:

Today’s Menu:

Breakfast: I made a melon/banana smoothie with hemp hearts, flax seed, greek yogurt, magnesium and that Uno’s oil stuff (or whatever it’s called…LOL!).

a.m. snack: greek yogurt and saskatoon berries (which are drying out in the freezer…Note to self: Use these in smoothies ASAP!)

Lunch: I made a BLT on very dark rye bread: a ton of lettuce, 1 piece of bacon, 4 slices of tomato and one slice of cheese

p.m. snack: the rest of the tomato!

Supper: Bruce made flax coated cod (which I still don’t like, but eat anyway because fish is good for me…) quinoa and mixed veggies.

I then spoiled myself by making that homemade coconut chocolate pudding from raw young coconut, cocoa & a little agave. I also drank all the coconut water. Opening the coconut and scraping all the coconut out burned more calories than I consumed in my opinion! I didn’t have the handsome hubby to help, so it was tricky!!

Here’s a photo of the pudding (I saved a little for Bruce when he’s home from work later):

It’s pudding you guys…!! Seriously! 🙂

Lent Day 23

Winding down for the night…gotta go and pick up my sweetheart from work in a couple minutes…

Today, we said goodbye to my faithful old car. We dropped her off at the auto-wreckers. We had a lot of travels together! I also had a wonderful evening with my “Be the Change Circle” ladies. So inspired, so connected!

I was up at 5:15 this morning (no alarm clock) so my body has finally figured out the time change. I had a great yoga session and spent some time focusing this morning. The day zoomed by; split up by a tired 3K run at noon (I’d forgotten my snack, so I was a little sluggish)

I thought of my Gramma today as Johnny Reid popped into my head with “Today I’m Gonna Try and Change the World”. I sure do miss being able to fix her computer and have a coffee with her. I miss inviting her over for lasagna (one of her faves). I know she’s there, cheering me on, reading my words like she always did…

A good day to end with a quiet meditation, prayer and blessed sleep next to my true love.

Menu:

Breakfast: homemade oatmeal

Lunch: (missed my snack) 1/2 gypsy salami sandwich on whole grain

p.m. Snack: two friends gave me delicious home made, refined sugar free energy bits/bars that they each had made! YUMMERS! Thanks K and L! You guys saved me today!

Supper: Lucas really wanted tacos – it was his turn again, so that’s what we had.

You’re a Perishable Item

“You’re a perishable item. Live accordingly.”

Ashley from The Middle Finger Project posted this on FB today, and it really resonated with me….actually, it was weird all the emails and posts I saw/read this morning that we’re about living life. Well, I guess not really that weird since that’s what I subscribe to…still…. 🙂

This morning, I woke up with my sweetie at 5:00 a.m. so that we could sign up for the Melissa’s Road Race. A 10K run in the mountains that I love. It will not be an easy run. I barely run 10 K on a straight road. It is a goal and I will train hard. The bonus is running with some of my girlfriends and running with my hubby (well, he’ll be far ahead, but he’ll still share the experience with me!)

If you would have tried to tell me that I would be running a mountain 10K this fall a few years back, I would have laughed in your face. I have never been a runner. I am a mediocre athlete at best. But…I am an athlete now. I may not be a winning athlete, but that’s not why I do it.

I do it to feel my heart pound and the wind in my face. I ride my bike to feel the freedom of the road. I lift weights to see my body change in shape. I do crazy Nike workouts because I am able to move. I do all of these things because I am alive. Because I am alive and well. And that makes me very blessed and very thankful.

I have come to believe that it is my God-given right and privilege to experience life. As Ashley put it today…I am perishable, so I’d better get off my ass and freaking LIVE like I am. I’ve wasted waaaayyyy too many days moaning and groaning. I likely will again…but something (or someone) will kick my ass and I will be up and moving again.

For today, I am living, I am listening to my heart, I am alive!

The song that keeps playing in my head while I write this…

 

I Can Feel It

I can feel it…

Sometimes it feels like I’m racing towards a cliff and the brakes don’t work…and I kinda don’t want them to.

Sometimes it feels like I’m trudging across a desert; up and down over dunes – no horizon, no end in sight- just the constant heat and unending desert, and I just want to collapse and let the sand take me.

Sometimes it feels like I climb over one obstacle only to have another crash down in front of me, bigger than the last and I clench my jaw and feel the tears come.

Sometimes it feels like I’m drowning in a raging river; my battered, exhausted body slamming over and over again into the rocks and I think about how it would feel to just slip under.

But….

I can feel it…

Sometimes it feels like the open road stretches in front of me; I cannot see my map, but I know it is there and I feel the wind in my hair and the anticipation in my heart.

Sometimes it feels like I can see the summit of the mountain and hear the soaring birds call my name; urging me forward and I feel myself take flight and join them.

Sometimes it feels like I’m walking through the dense forest, but its quiet settles my pounding heart and I press forward toward the light that beckons me.

Sometimes it feels like I’m on a stage with so many faces turned to me; listening, waiting, needing my voice and I am inspired to sing to them.

I can feel it…

The changes

The peace

The gratitude

The faith

The love

Life’s Seasons

This morning, at a very early hour, I am up again to read and reflect. I have started to find this early morning time for me is a relief and respite from the craziness that I seem to be in this month. What is it about June?

I started a new devotional book today: Inspiring Women Every Day. The beginning of something new. This month has been full of “newness”, yet at the same time, some “oldness” has come back to haunt me.

Both my husband and I started new positions for work. Exciting, yes, but I’ve found myself having a hard time adjusting to his new schedule. It brought back a ton of bad memories that I have of an earlier time in our relationship when things were…on the edge. I don’t know why; it’s certainly not fair to either of us. No one needs to dwell in the past.

What I think it means is that I have needed to really face it. I pushed all the hurt and fear down inside me so that I could carry on. I did not allow myself to heal. I was not honest with him nor with myself. And so, in these new times of weariness and missing him, all the darkness pushed it’s way to the surface. The fear and the hurt tried to rush in.

This time though, I am stronger. I have learned a lot about who I am and what I am capable of. I have more faith that God will not give me anything that I cannot handle. He has given me the resources and the willingness to hurt, accept and then heal. To know that I cannot heal without first letting myself hurt.

And so, I read, I pray, I talk, I cry and finally, FINALLY I starting to feel like I can move on.

I am no fool. I know that I will be tested so many times. But now I’ve learned that these are just the ebbs and flows of life. That it really has nothing to do with me at all. It is just the seasons of life. I should have understood that from being raised on a farm!

Sometimes, the winters are hard and long but the spring always comes. There have been magical winters full of memories and special times. Summers are brilliant and easy most of the time, but there are summers when disaster has struck. Fall always seems to feel like a time for reflecting and harvesting of all that we’ve learned. Each year, we move forward a little more.

What I mean to say in my ramblings here this morning (I was up before 5, so cut me some slack! LOL!) is that there is always, ALWAYS those difficult long winters or stormy summers in our life. But there are also blissful. quiet winter evenings by the fire and lazy, hot summer days where all the world seems perfect. It’s how we grow and how & what we choose to harvest from them that really matters.

Look back over the week and heal those hurts and then move on. Today, a midst another rainy day, find the moments that feel like summer. There is so much joy in creativity – take the time to create something; do something you love. Turn off the noise and breathe. Just breathe. It may only be for a tiny piece of the weekend; don’t worry about how much time you don’t have. None of us have much time here. Our seasons are not that long…