Friday, January 3, 2014

2014 Manifesto

Ann Voskamp created her own manifesto and I was inspired. I used picmonkey, drew from Ann's manifesto and created my own. I wanted to post it here as a way to keep myself accountable. I have it printed it out and on my fridge, but when you send something out into cyber space...well...that's a whole 'nother ball game.

My 2014 Manifesto break down:
First things first: Word in. Work out: Word in- to feed my soul with the word of God- something that in years past I have gone through phases. This year I want it to become a habit, non negotiable, just as eating my three physical meals a day are non negotiable.
Work out: physically- get my body moving. Starting off small- but get moving every. day. Five minutes? Ten minutes? Anything is better than nothing. 
Spiritually: Phillipians 2:12 tells us to work out our faith with fear and trembling.  What actions do I need to put behind my words to make my faith stronger? 
Memorize- hide God’s word in my heart, even if it’s just one little verse a month. Again, anything is better than nothing.

Celebrate the season- "To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven” Ecc 3:1. I want to celebrate and be content in the season of life that I am in, whatever that may be. Right now it's being a student and new wife. My husband is looking for a new job and when the fears start to overwhelm I whisper to myself "this is just a season". Godliness with contentness is great gain. Celebrate the season.
Unplug to recharge- turn off the tv, the computer, the phone and read a book, try a new recipe, go for a walk. I need to set intentional times where the screen is off.

Speak words that strengthen hearts- limit words of anger, frustration, nagging. Speak words that breathe life. That encourage, that strengthen.

Count the ways He loves- continue that list of 1,000 gifts, the ways He blesses daily

Savor His creation- look outside the window, examine a leaf, take a walk, snap a picture of the sunset, explore the grooves in a sea shell. I don't want to ever forget that I serve the master Creator!

Stand firm on His promises- I am a Child of God, The Lord will Provide, He will never leave me nor forsake me, I am forgiven

Clean space, clear head- keep the desk, the room, the kitchen tidy so that the physical clutter doesn’t also cause emotional clutter.

Connect: This year I want to really focus on my relationships. I want to call the person I've been thinking of, write a letter, have a conversation without where I am genuinely just listening.  You never know when someone you love will be removed from your life and in the end, what really matters is the people in your life.

Quiet- there doesn’t always need to be background noise. Turn off the tv. Quiet yourself before God. Quiet your own mouth and truly listen to what a person is trying to tell you. 

Grant grace- to the husband who didn’t wash his dishes before he left for work, to the driver who cut you off, to the cashier who interacts with you briskly. Grant grace because grace grants life.

Life is not an emergency- go slow. Ask yourself, “in five years, is this REALLY going to matter?” This year I aim to plan ahead so that I don’t miss out on the small things because I'm too busy rushing around.

Pick you hard: One of the quotes that has stuck with me is "Being overweight is hard. Losing weight is hard. Maintaining weight is hard. Which hard are you going to choose?" I want to get to my goal weight this year and then stay there.

Love well- I'm a new wife and I want to love well, not half halfheartedly. Go the extra mile. Love is patient and kind…1 Cor 13

Intentional stops to pray: something new I am trying this year. I'm going to set some alarms on my phone that work around my school and work schedule. When those alarms go off, no matter what I'm doing, it will be a single for me not stop and pray. 

Explore-Go for a walk! Open a new book! Take up a new craft! Explore and create, because God designed us to ENJOY these things!

Every day, not just every now and then- My goal is to do these things DAILY. By doing them daily I will make new routines and new habits. I'm going to make these things my new normal.

Here's to 2014!! 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

what my family is getting for christmas this year

In January of 2007 my world was turned upside down when my Grandma passed away. When my birthday occurred that April I remember opening the birthday card from my Grandpa and bawling my eyes at the realization that I would never again receive a birthday card from her. My greatest regret is not having kept more of those handwritten notes from her.

So... when I saw this idea online I knew that I wanted to jump on that band wagon.

This woman took handwritten recipes, scanned them, and then sent them to a company to get them printed on fabric. She turned that fabric into these beautiful tea towels. 
I raided my family's recipe boxes, as well as my boyfriend's family's recipe boxes. Those near to me are going to get some tea towels with recipes in their loved one's handwriting.

I may not ever get a birthday card in my Grandma's handwriting again but having a sample of her writing displayed in my kitchen will be a way for me to honor her memory and cherish the few samples of her hand writing that I do have. :)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

1000 Gifts List #1282-1296

Six years ago my very favorite relative went home to the Lord.

My grandma was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer. The last time I went to visit my grandpa he gave my mom a list that my grandma had written after her surgery. My grandma was so worried that she would lose her ability to read and write after having her surgery.  The very first thing my grandma did after having brain surgery was to write down what she was thankful for.

I don't have brain cancer. The very least I can do is to write down a list of the graces He has given me. I'm sure my grandma never thought that anyone would keep that list. But we did, and it is a testament of both her faith and His faithfulness.

And the gifts just keep on coming...

1282) my brothers and their girlfriends all home- everyone together
1283) wonderful co-workers
1284) date nights with my lovey
1285) dark clouds and distant rainbows
1286) cute fabric for a new skirt
1287) surprise summer showers
1288) little old woman in wheelchair at Disneyland wearing sequiny red ears 
1289) blue moons
1290) staying up late watching tv and laughing with my brothers
1291) handwritten recipes
1292) new baby-sitting opportunities
1293) getting to work with one of my favorite students
1294) little boys and hatss
1295) memories of my grandma
1296) her gratitude list

"Every song you love, every memory you cherish, every moment that has moved you to holy tears has been given to you from the One who has been pursuing you from your first breathe in order to win your heart. God's version of flowers and chocolates and candlelight dinners comes in the form of sunsets and falling stars, moonlight on lakes, and cricket symphonies, warm winds, swaying trees, lush gardens, and fierce devotion." John and Stasi Eldridge

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

WFMW: weight watchers points plus

I recently (re) joined Weight Watchers. I had been successful on the plan before, when I actually followed the plan. But...I got lazy... and didn't follow the plan and started gaining weight which made me not want to go to meetings which made me quit. That was three years ago.

A wonderful friend of mine wanted to start losing weight early last year and asked if I'd like to join her. I was able to lose weight on my own with changes in diet and exercise for about a year before I started to plateau. I knew I needed to do something differently so I went back and rejoined Weight Watchers. I figured it would be the same as when I had joined three years ago. Well, things have changed so I figured  I would write a little bit about points plus in case anyone was curious.

How it works: food assigned a points plus value based on 4 things: total fat, carbohydrates, fiber, and protein. In the past points were determined by calories, total fat, and fiber. However, researchers at Weight Watchers determined that not all calories are the same. For instance, on the old plan, I could eat a banana for two points or I could have a 100 Calorie Pack of cookies for two points. Which do you think I chose? 

However, on the new plan banana are 0 points (as are all other fruits and MOST vegetables) and a 100 Calorie Pack is 3 points. So now, when I want to grab a snack which do you think is more enticing? The one that cost me nothing, or the one that cost me three points? 

Every person is allotted a daily points plus target. This is your set daily goal of how many points a day you are allowed to eat. Your goal is determined by your current weight, age, and sex. Therefore, as you lose weight, or as you age, your points target is apt to change. 26 points plus per day is the lowest points you can ever get, that is the base. 

In addition to your daily points plus target you get 49 extra weekly points to "spend" however you want. You can use them or not use them. You can spread them out over the course of the week or you can use them all in one day. It's up to you. 

So...what does one eat when they are on Weight Watchers. Because that's what anyone really cares about, right? 

I took pictures of everything I ate today to give you an example of one way you could use your points. I'm not saying this is the right way or the best way, simply showing you how I used them today. 

My points plus daily target is 26 points. 

one small bagel  2 points
1 tbsp. regular cream cheese 1 point
1 tbsp. jelly 1 point
1 banana 0 points

Total: 4 points

Lunch: I purposly pack a large lunch because I leave straight from work and go to school. I eat about half of my lunch at work and I save the other half to snack on during class. If I didn't do this I would get hungry at school. Hunger at school leads to snacks from the vending machine. Snacks from the vending machine mean I buy something like gummy bears which is  labeled "healthy choice" joke. "Healthy choice" vending machine snacks lead to weight gain. I think you get the picture. :)

one piece of bread 1 point
two ounces of turkey lunch meat 1 point
one slice of provolone cheese 2 points (sandwich equals 4 points)
10 pretzel crisps 3 points
1 mini light babybel cheese 1 point
grapes 0 points
1 tbsp. Olive Garden Italian dressing 1 point
2 sticks of celery, cut in thirds 0 points

Total: 9 points

I've found these delicious cinnamon roasted almonds (SO yummy) that make a good snack for throughout the day. I like to if I can find something small to nibble on throughout the day it helps me to control what I eat. 

1 ounce cinnamon roasted almonds 4 points

After I got home from school I started making dinner and I really wanted cornbread. Part of the reason why I love Weight Watchers is because nothing is offlimits. If you have the points, you can eat it. I was hungry as I was making dinner so I ate a very small (4 inch) banana (that I forgot to take a picture of) to curb my hunger until my dinner was ready. 

1 cup progressive soup 3 points
1 cornbread muffin 5 points
1 Weight Watchers carrot cake piece 2 points

Total: 10 points


 Total daily: 27 pointsI used my 26 daily points and one extra point so that I could have dessert. Because I love dessert. :)

Some of the reasons that I like Weight Watchers is because nothing is off limits. A couple of weeks ago was my boyfriends birthday and we had donuts at the house. I ate one. Not one of those healthy baked kinds. Oh no, this donut was fried to perfection! And it was worth every darn extra point. :) The points however prevented me from eating more than one donut. 

I also like that you don't have to buy any special foods. I chose to buy the weight watchers cake slices (which are REALLY small...but so worth the low point values) but other than that I don't buy any Weight Watcher brand foods. With your little points calculator you can look at any nutrition label on any can or box and figure out the points plus value. 

I love that I can still eat out. With restaurants putting their nutrition info online it makes it super easy to calculate how many points a meal out might be. And, if I go somewhere with high points values I can use my extras. 

The meeting that I attend is wonderful. The leader is super down to earth and everyone who is there has the same goal in mind. It's a wonderful environment. 

I hope this will help someone who's interested in learning more!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

sacrifices for lent

I'm not catholic but I greatly admire the honor and respect that they give for the Easter season. 

I baby-sit for a wonderful Catholic family and they have a beautiful tradition that I would love to incorporate into my future family. 

Each Lent the family has an empty jar and some pinto beans. It is a sacrifice jar. The point is to teach your child about how Jesus was obedient to the Father and sacrificed Himself for us, even though it was hard. 

 As children (and adults!) go through the Lenten season they add a pinto bean to the jar each time they make a sacrifice. 

Then, on Easter morning, when the kids enter the kitchen they see their jar filled with jelly beans! 

You can then explain, on Easter morning, how God can take our obedience, even when it is a painful thing, and turn it into something beautiful! I think another good thing would be to make sure that you use a large jar that you know your family would never be able to fill on their own with the pinto beans. Then, on Easter fill the jar to the brim with jelly beans. You can talk about how there are more jelly beans than Easter beans because God gives us grace; something that we can never earn. 

I think the important thing would be to focus on Jesus, not the "good deeds" we can do. However, I do believe that it is a beautiful visual, especially for children. :) 

Friday, February 17, 2012

WILMM: love conquers

Why I love my man reason #22