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3 1/2 years and 2 days

via 3 1/2 years and 2 days

This post was originally written 3 years ago.  Paul and I have now been married for 6 1/2 years.  I am eternally grateful that he still chooses me every day.  I love being yours Paul Christie.

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Ten Minutes: Living in My Body

Do you ever think of your body as a friend?  Do you have compassion toward it?  What would it look like for you? -Shauna Niequist

This was the question at the end of my devotional this morning.  It really spoke to me, so I knew that I needed to write about it.

From Sunday to Tuesday, my youngest Noah and I have been away at church camp.  I thanked God for my body so many times over those 48 hours, just as I will today and did before I left.

I am 37 and probably, realistically 15 pounds over weight.  Up until 2 weeks ago I held a desk job where I could see the fat just building on my body like never before.  Since then, I have been working hard to get my steps in for the day.  Even if it means walking around in circles in my bedroom while watching TV because it is raining outside.

While Noah and I were at camp we kept track of how many steps we took.  Every time we had any down time, we hiked.  Lucky for us some of the other kids and their parents who were at the camp with us, also liked to walk and go on adventures.  We weren’t alone, had wonderful talks and the chance to see nature all around us during this time.

On Sunday we went 10560 steps, which for me is the equivalent of 4.74 miles.  On Monday we went 14207 which was 6.39 miles and last Tuesday it was 8416 steps for 3.79 miles.

I thanked my body over and over for being able to move through those trails.  For being able to sleep on a bunk-bed without much trouble and no stiff joints the next day.  I thanked my body for being able to tolerate camp food.  Lastly, I woke up Tuesday morning and had to made a bee line for the bathroom.  My stomach was really upset, after going back and forth from my room to the bathroom for about an hour and half, my body allowed me to push through the camp day without much problem.

It is easy to look at the imperfections in our body.  But, what about all the amazing things that our body allows us to do?  I mean, first and foremost my body allowed me to carry 3 beautiful babies to term and deliver naturally (so I mean, that is pretty much the greatest gift you could ever receive).  It still allows me to run all over, move quickly, climb up and down, fuel it the way that I need to, consume a million ounces of water, swim kids around in a lake, paddle a canoe to give kids the ride of their life, sit on a tractor to endure a trip to the barn and stand up to do the motions to so many camp songs that I can’t even count.

So one more time I will say, thank you body.  I keep treating you right and you do not disappoint and you continue to return the favor.  Like a true friend, you are there for me when I need you and you know that you can count on me to treat you as I want to be treated!

#alltheyeses, #MakingTimeForMe, 2018 Blog Posts, When Life Gives You Lemons

Embrace the Joys of Summer

My devotional today is about embracing the body that God gave to us.  Not sitting on the side lines because of what we think that we look like.  Truth is…hardly anyone is actually even paying attention to what it is is YOU look like.

“I want to find any and every excuse to stay covered, stay inside, stay invisible.”  Shauna Niequist.  There are certainly many people who feel like this, but where does that get them.  Probably in a bigger state of shame, with more reasons to stay covered or invisible.

I don’t have my best body.  That was probably about 12 years ago.  The fact of the matter is too, now after 3 children, I’ll never get back to that body.  Even if the scale reads the same as it did back then.

I joined a weight loss challenge with some friends 2 weeks ago though, went back on my low-carb diet that I did last summer and have been purposefully moving more.  There have already been more days this summer where you could catch me in my bathing suit or in shorts then would have happened in the last 4 or 5 years.

“I’m going to live in the body that God made me, not because it’s perfect but because it’s mine.” -Savor

That is is, that is really all that needs to be noted!  Take that truth.  I am here and while I am healthy enough and lucky enough to have the ability to move, run, dance and swim, that is exactly what I am going to do.

I will not take one minute for granted.  Even though today is my weigh-in day for this challenge, I am going to be grateful for whatever the scale says because I feel physically better than I have in years.


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First Day of my 2nd Act!

For the last month or so I have been calling my current stage in life my 2nd act.  I am 37, I will be 38 in August.  So, it is probably pretty safe to say that I am in the 2nd part of a 3 part life.

The last day at my 9-5 was last Wednesday.  The kids still had school both Thursday and Friday though and I had other things going on.  Today though, the 5 year old is home and he will be home with me all day.

I won’t be passing the duties off to someone else in an hour or so, so that I can be on my way to work.  I don’t have to drop him off at daycare to be cared for by someone else while I work.  Nope, not today, not this summer.

He is already awake, I have already received cuddles and he is drinking some juice.  Relaxing a bit before our plans to go to the zoo (his choice).  We have a zoo membership and it is only about 15 minutes away from our house, so this is one of the few things we can do daily that doesn’t cost us anything.  We pack our own snacks and drinks, we get our steps in and we enjoy each others company.

I still got up with my husband’s alarm.  I mean, it is the least I can do to get the coffee ready and pack up his lunch.  After all he is the one busting his butt in his 9-5 to make it so that I can be home with our family.  I have already done my yoga for the day, made a list of things from the grocery store and now I am enjoying my cup of coffee.

I will not waste these next couple of months.  I will truly enjoy the time, play games and pretend and do all the silly things that my kids want me to do with them.

Life is Good!  Here’s to the 2nd Act ❤ ❤

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Finding the Plot again…

I am one of the most high strung people you will probably ever meet.  Anything that I do, I do it the very best way that I know how.  I don’t sit down until all of my responsibilities are checked off the list and even then, I will probably add a few more just to feel like I am not being lazy.

Everyone has the same 24 hours in a day, it is up to us how we choose to use them.

I definitely let this slip away from me, over the last 6 months for sure, but probably more like the last year or two.

Not working out like I should be, not playing with my children like I should be and not eating the way that I should be.  I was just living life fast and hard and not taking enough time for all the stuff that really truly mattered.

Over the last few weeks, I have felt amazing again.  Taking time to do fun little things with the kids, like taking walks, playing games and helping to pump tires and balls for them to hang outside.  I have moving A LOT more, thank you to SHIPT.  My part-time gig has me grocery shopping, which means I get so many steps in compared to my desk job.  Without excuse I have been walking to take the kids to and from school.

Then last week, I started a “Let’s Get Healthy” 8 week challenge.  I weighed in last Friday at 167.4 and today I was down to 164.  A little focus on what I was eating, a lot of focus on how much water I am consuming and how much I am moving and I already weigh less than I have in all of 2018.

I have brought myself back to my quiet, reflective mornings.  Reading a devotional and a couple of days a week, yoga.  Well today in my devotional was this idea of losing the plot of my life.  What helps you to recover?

My mindset…that is what helps me to recover.  I do a reset and realize that when I can be calm, rest and relax (for any amount of time in my day) I am happier.  When I look to the kids to guide me sometime, instead of my guiding them all the time…I am happier.  Choosing to stay far away from negativity, encouraging positivity and wearing a smile daily…I am happier.

We get to choose.  We get to choose how we look at our day, at our life and at our circumstances.  Happy Friday!

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Today is the Day

After nearly 6 months of it being on my mind.  2 1/2 months after confirming with my husband that this was something we could do, today is my last day at my 9-5.

In about 2 hours, I will officially be a Stay at Home Mom.  With no boss, but me!

Here is all that I want to say…8 years ago I was a stay at home Mom.  Then life changed, I changed and things had to be done differently.

Every day for 8 years I have worked my A$$ off to get back to this place.  Sometimes, I worked at 3 different jobs just to make ends meet.  There was a time when I was on the Bridge card and my children got health care from the state.

Penny after penny was saved.  Bill after bill paid off.  We trimmed, we put money away, we lived without and we have done the best that we knew how for 8 years (7 years of Paul and I together).

This is my reward.  A summer of not paying someone else to watch my children.  A summer of memories with them at the park, the zoo, the beach and the pool.  Enjoying them and hanging with them, when they still want to be seen in public with their Mom.

Finding my Joy in life again, taking it back, playing before I lose all ability to do so.

**Thank you to my amazing husband, without which this crazy dream of mine would be impossible.**

P.S.  I am still working that side hustle…SHIPT shopping for the WIN!!!  But…then I get to work when I want to work and bring in that money so we can still live our best life ❤ ❤

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Ten Minutes: I finally did it!!

It has been a long time coming.  I first brought it up to my husband back in January.  Then I kept mentioning it, getting a feel for if he could tell I was serious or thought it was just an idea that would pass.

I have been at my current job for 4 years.  Each summer for the last 4 summers, hiring someone to be home with my children while I work.  Paying too much of my hard earned money out, all so that someone else could spend their summer vacation with them.

Not this year, this year Mom is staying home with them.  This past Thursday I put in my resignation at my job.  I love what I do for a living, but it isn’t worth it any longer.  I want to spend the summer with my children before they are too old and too cool to spend the summer with me.

This has taken a lot of planning.  I have a few side jobs (some side hustle) already scheduled to bring in some money during the summer, but it won’t completely make up for the lack of the full time job.  Pre-paying for activities to keep us busy during the summer and continually coming up with inexpensive ideas for all of us to enjoy.

I have 3 weeks left at my 9-5.  It took a lot of praying, a lot of self-discovery and a lot of communication with my husband to reach the decision that we did.  I just know it is the right decision for us and our family.  We maybe not be able to do this any other summer, so I am going to fully enjoy this one (while obviously secretly hoping I get more).

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Healing Words

My devotion today is about the power of words.  How they can often hurt, but we need to consciously use them more often to heal.  Think about what you say before you say it.

Is it True, it is Kind, is it Necessary?

The charge for the devotion was to reach out to someone with some kind words.

All I want to say today is I hope that today is everything that you want it to be.  I’m sending positive vibes and love out into the universe, for each and every one of you to grab onto should you choose.

Today is going to be a great day!

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Ten Minutes: Sabbath

A day of rest, who has time for a day of rest?

I was out of town for the last 5 days.  Wednesday through Sunday I was at an early childhood conference a couple hours away.  I had a hotel room to myself for 4 nights.  No kids, no pup, no hubs…it was pretty terrific.

Now, I missed my family like crazy, but you can understand why it sounds awesome.  Anyway, I left the hotel about 8:45am yesterday.  The weather out here was a mess.  Mix of snow, rain and freezing rain.  So many cars off the road, with emergency vehicles to help them.  The drive home was a slow go, but we made it home safely.

After that drive though, I thought man I wish I had tomorrow off too.  I wish I had a day to just sit and relax.  You know the whole idea of needing a vacation after your vacation.  I wasn’t on a vacation, on a work trip, but the idea is the same.

This morning my devotion in 100 days to brave was “Sabbath” do you work in six days so you can rest on the seventh.  Right after I read this devotion, I got the notification that my son’s school is closed today.  Due to the crazy weather, there are power outages all over town.  So, my day of rest was granted to me.  Noah and I are still in our PJs snuggling each other and our puppy.  Watching TV and chatting about what happened while I was out of town.

Thank you Jesus for answering the prayer I didn’t even know I had sent up!

Happy Monday Everyone!

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Ten Minutes: Find Your Rest

It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone.  Don’t you know he enjoys giving rest to those he loves? -PSALM 127:2

Last night, Paul and I went to bed at 9pm.  This is what we do.  When we are done with all of our work for the day, if we are tired, we don’t pretend not to be and we head to bed.  I think that we were both in bed for about 7 minutes before we had both drifted off to sleep.

Somehow, someway in 2018 I have been able to sit and rest a bit more.  Still not as much as my family would like, probably not as much as I should, but more than 2017 or the previous 10 years.  I let dishes sit in the sink for a minute, or a dry load of laundry hang out unfolded overnight.  Yes, these are the things in my life I have a hard time with.

I have a hard time relaxing when all of my “responsibilities” aren’t done.  My husband says though, that I am the only one who cares if they are done in the time frame that I have created.  Which is probably true.  I mean we can all agree that we need clean dishes and we need clean clothes, but they don’t have to be cleaned, dried and put away the instant that they are dirtied, they can sit awhile.

This weekend, well starting today actually is my “resting” weekend of the year.  This will be the fourth year in a row that I have headed off to a conference about 2 hours away without my hubs or the kids.  I have a hotel room to myself from tonight until Sunday.  I can go to bed when I want, wake up when I want.  Watch whatever TV I want, I am taking 3 books with me (yes I have high hopes).

I will be at the conference with co-workers, but I can spend time alone in my hotel room if I choose to.  I usually go and walk around the city by myself early in the morning.  Enjoying a cup of coffee and the fresh air.  I will get to see my sister tonight and other dear friends on Saturday.

Thankful doesn’t even begin to describe this life that I live.  My children in my household and all the millions of things that I need to get done in order to feel like I can rest.  I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the whole world.  The supportive husband that I have, who kisses me goodbye, asks me to be safe and tells me that he is going to miss me.  Who will be at home with 3 of our kids and the puppy, will have a great time doing things in a much different way than me (and that is OK).

I will be finding some time to rest over the next 4 days.  Should be reasonably early being by myself, no laundry and no dishes!