Monday, December 21, 2009

Glad I'm NOT a Celebrity...

Recently a number of celebrities have been in the news for not so pleasant things. And people have been pretty hard on them.

Tiger Woods...he fell...because he is human. We are hurt because we elevated him to a level similar to God. He could do no wrong. He was the go to man for how to do things. I admit as the news came out I was shocked but then I stopped. Because the reality is he is human. And he made mistakes...in his case multiple mistakes. He is the one who will have to live with those. And there are many consequences that he probably didn't think of when he was in the moment. But he is still human and if he is sorry and asks for forgiveness he should be forgiven. It may take time and we will not forget. (well until the next celebrity does something stupid)

Chris Henry...he and his fiance got into a domestic dispute and in a freak accident he got seriously hurt and died. His family and friends are hurt by the loss. But the circumstances of his death were not pretty. So will we focus on the sorrow his family and friends are feeling or will we focus on the circumstances. He was a 26 year old young man who had a life and a career ahead of him. There is a grief in the loss.

Famous people are not really any different than the rest of us. But they have their lives good and bad paraded in front of them, their family, their friends, and all the rest of us. I suggest we give them a break. They are human. The only perfect person...sits at the right hand of God.

Pray for their families.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Story of US...part 1

J and I are coming up on our two year anniversary of when we started dating in February and as we approach the holidays I thought I would tell you some of the story of how we met.

First some background...

Me: I started dating at age 16. Shortly after I broke up with my high school sweetheart I started dating my first husband. I got married at 21 to a man who was 9 years older. Not a wise plan...he wanted me to be where he was and I was trying to figure out who I was let alone who we were. Needless to say we both had different expectations of marriage and it didn't work out for us. We got divorced in 2004. I then dated an ex for a while...well the old addage is true...they are an ex for a reason. So in April 2005 I was single for the first time since I was 16. I decided I was not going to find the man of my dreams in a bar and where I work there isn't really a dating pool so I went online. I signed up for E-Harmony. (Another story for another day) Then I signed up with Match.com...better but still not working out. So when my friend recommended Yahoo I said "why not" and signed up.

Him: He had been single for years by choice and then thought he found the right woman and got married. Well needless to say it didn't work out. Her loss would be my gain.

In November of 2007 I sent a "wink" to J by December having not heard anything I decided cancel my membership and go another route. Well sometime in January I receive this message back from J explaining that his sister had killed his computer in November/December and he had just gotten it back up. We talk through IM every night learning all kinds of things about each other from family to favorite foods to work. He surprisingly was not thrown off by my working in a church. We decided to meet. From that night on it was set...we went to lunch the next day and talked about religion, exes, etc and determined that we were going to be exclusive with each other. And the rest is history...to follow at a later date.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Easy, Healthy, Yummy Shepherd's Pie

I'm constantly on the hunt for easy recipes to fix when I get home from work...this is one of my favorites.

It is a variation on a Weight Watchers recipe that I improvised with what I had.

Easy Shepherd's Pie (Makes four servings)

1 lb ground turkey breast - make sure it is turkey breast it is leaner
8-10 oz Jar of turkey gravy - I use Boston Market Brand
12 oz bag of frozen peas, carrots, and corn mixture - the one with green beans works well too
4 servings of instant mashed potatoes - last night we made real mashed potatoes because we needed to use up our potatoes
Grated cheese
Pepper & Salt
Italian Seasoning (optional)

  1. Cook the turkey breast until there is no pink left. Add salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning to taste. I use a lot of pepper because we like it. Drain or spread out on paper towel to remove excess grease. (there isn't much)
  2. Put frozen vegetables and gravy in sauce pan over medium-high heat. Stir frequently.
  3. Mix cooked turkey into gravy mixture. Stir to prevent burning.
  4. Make four servings of mashed potatoes while vegetable mixture is getting warm.
  5. Divide gravy mixture among four plates or bowls. Put a scoop of mashed potatoes on top. Sprinkle with grated cheese and pepper.
  6. Enjoy!
Great recipe for when you are in a hurry and it is great this time of year because it is nice and warm. Also it is healthy.

    Grinch vs. Who




    How the Grinch Stole Christmas is one of my favorite Christmas movies because I think it really does show the real meaning of Christmas. And I think the Grinch gets a bad wrap really. Yes he does try to ruin Christmas but then he saves the day and realizes what Christmas is all about. And ultimately Christmas is about forgiveness so I think we can all learn a lesson or two from this seemingly simple Christmas story.

    How many of us at one time or another have had a Grinchy attitude toward something. That we must figure out a way to stop it or ruin it. Or just didn't want to participate.

    I admit since I started working in a church I have a little less of the Who spirit and more of the Grinch until Christmas Eve...then I'm totally Who. We constantly have services, events, etc that seem to cause a crazy amount of stress for all involved but always look great at the end. And it amazes me how in a time of year when we are focusing on God's greatest gift to us we forget and focus on petty issues that really don't mean anything.

    The true meaning of Christmas is celebrating God's love of us and the gift of his Son. And I admit it is easy to forget these things in the midst of preparing for Christmas with shopping, events, gatherings, etc. I myself often forget the true reason for the season. Although I often think it is to eat cookies, baked goods, heavy meals until I can't move it is really all about Him.

    I'll finish with my favorite Grinch quote..."He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before! Maybe Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more!"

    Tuesday, December 15, 2009

    Amazing Husband

    I'm a blessed woman. I know this. God was looking very favorably on me when my husband came into my life. He is a good man. He is amazing at many things. He adores me and does things he doesn't love to make me happy. Last night I get home from work to see Christmas lights on our front porch. Now he hates putting up and taking down lights but he knows I like them so since he got home early yesterday he put them up for me. He also had dinner cooking and almost ready when I came through the door. He is amazing. And he does it with a smile.

    Monday, December 14, 2009

    Engage Brain...Then Mouth

    So this weekend was another full one. J hates how full our weekends are sometimes but it seems no matter how bland I try to make them something comes up. So we'll see what happens this weekend.

    At work we host a Drive-Through Nativity for our community. It is an amazing experience and I hope to put up some pictures of it later this week. It runs Friday and Saturday from 5:30-8:00 PM. We came up Friday and J got to go out and play a shepherd at the Nativity scene. Then Saturday we came up and J (who has a good deep voice) got to sing with the Carolers. He loved it but he was reluctant at first.

    Well prior to that we got into a conversation with one of the youth about going into the military or going to college. As a man who skipped college and enlisted in the Navy J was advising the young man to go to college and then if he wants to, go into the military upon graduation. Well the youth left and his mother asked J and another gentleman if they got him straight. And we explained that we advised college then the military.

    Another woman who is an officer overheard the conversation and put in her two cents about how the young man would hate being enlisted because anyone with an IQ over 100 will hate being told what to do, etc. She recommended going to college, through ROTC, and then onto being an officer. And I made a comment about how as an active duty enlisted man J commented that he wished someone had told him about other options. She said "well I'm not saying your husband is stupid" to which I had to bite my tongue...not to say something about officers. My father is retired Air Force and he had some officers around him from time to time that amazed me they could tie their shoes let alone command a group of men.

    I realize that I'm protective of my husband and I probably took her comment wrong. But it amazes me how people make comments without A) Knowing their audience and B) without thinking about how it could be taken. And my husband was valedictorian he could have successfully gone to college...and he trains officers to do what he does...my husband jokes I'm the brains of the operation but he is very smart and it frustrates me that people make comments like that.

    Friday, December 11, 2009

    Christmas Getting To Know You...

    Welcome to the Christmas edition of getting to know your blogger friends. Okay, here's what you're supposed to do, and try not to be a SCROOGE!!! Just copy this entire post and paste into a new post on your blog, if you have one. Change all the answers so that they apply to you.

    Yes, I know you're thinking "Puhlease, another list?" Yes. Another list. I like hearing this kind of stuff about you all! LOVE IT. I can't wait to read your answers!

    1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I love wrapping gifts but I admit I use gift bags a lot to save time.

    2. Real tree or Artificial? Currently we don't have a tree but I love a real tree.



    3. When do you put up the tree? See above...


    4. When do you take the tree down? See above...


    5. Do you like eggnog? I love it...especially with a touch of nutmeg...and some Captains', some brandy, and a splash of Amaretto.

    6. Favorite gift received as a child? My Little Pony Castle


    7. Hardest person to buy for? My Dad. I often get him a gift card because I don't know what else to get him.


    8. Easiest person to buy for? My Husband.


    9. Do you have a nativity scene? I have a number of them and J has one too so we have plenty.


    10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail!


    11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? All gifts are good because they are given with love.



    12. Favorite Christmas Movie? White Christmas (Always teary at the end) or How the Grinch Stole Christmas



    13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? As early as I start finding things...


    14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? I try really hard not to...I'm not opposed to re-gifting but I think it can backfire.

    15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Cookies and Fudge

    16. Lights on the tree? Tons of them

    17. Favorite Christmas song? O Holy Night

    18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Stay at Home

    19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Most of them

    20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel...we currently have a mechanical one who has issues...she makes a weird shrieking noise from time to time

    21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas Morning

    22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Crazy drivers in parking lots

    23. Favorite ornament, theme, or color? a 1976 Hallmark Train ornament my parents bought the year I was born

    24. Favorite for Christmas Dinner? mint salad...so yummy!


    25. What do you want to do for Christmas this year? Spend time with family


    26. Favorite Christmas tradition growing up? Sorting presents Christmas Eve


    27. Favorite tradition now? Waking up with J and sharing a cup of coffee on Christmas morning

    28. Favorite Christmas Memory? A gift exchange in 5th Grade...we each had to bring a $5 gift and I went out and picked a nice new gift. The day came and I excitedly took the gift to school. When it came my turn to pick a gift there was one wrapped in a paper bag with ribbon. When I opened it I found a slightly grungy, well loved bear and was disappointed. But I took it home to my mom and she looked at it and explained that it may have been a favorite toy of someone and it meant the world to them so it was the best they had to give. From that day forward I have kept that bear. He actually sits on my bookcase at work to remind me that sometimes we just need to give the best we have and not worry about the details.

    Bead Give-Away

    I love beads. I've collected them for years. Many of them are just sitting waiting for the right project to come along so they too can be used in creative ways. And I love any time I can get more beads especially for free. So when I saw Lori over at Pretty Things was doing a give away I had to enter and share. So go over to her site and see the 6 (yes 6) ways you can win beads.

    Good Luck!!

    Friday, December 4, 2009

    Missing Out

    J and I have thoughtfully and prayerfully made the decision not to have children. We have two dogs and four cats, more than enough to keep us busy really. And I won't go into all the reasons for not having children but it was not a hasty or light decision for us. We love children...but we also love giving them back to Mom and Dad.

    I will admit though I sometimes feel like we miss out on some things because we don't have children...whole conversations, firsts, birthday parties, play dates, clothes & toy shopping, etc. Now don't get me wrong we shop for friends kids and for nieces and nephews. But it is a bit odd going to a child's birthday party when you don't have a child. I've done it and I enjoy but answering "which one's yours?" gets awkward sometimes when none of them are.

    We continue to stand by our decision to not have children but I do think there is a separate society of sorts for those with children that has its own language and everything. For now we will brag about our dogs and enjoy our freedom.

    Tuesday, December 1, 2009

    All About Christmas

    So Rebecca Jo over on Knit By God's Hand had this cool post about Christmas and I decided I wanted to do it too.

    (1) What is your favorite Christmas movie?
    How the Grinch Stole Christmas...by far because it has a great message about what Christmas is about. But it is followed closely by Charlie Brown's Christmas

    (2) What is your LEAST favorite Christmas movie?
    A Christmas Story...now I know many may disagree but this movie does nothing to put me in the Christmas spirit.

    (3) What is your favorite Christmas song?
    O Holy Night.... how can you not love it. It is amazing. It is what it is all about.

    (4) What Christmas song(s) drives you crazy?
    Although I'm not a fan of Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer...I despise...the Christmas Donkey song.

    (5) What is your favorite Christmas drink? (i.e. egg nog, hot chocolate)
    Egg Nog for cold...Apple Cider for warm

    (6) What is your favorite Christmas memory?
    Coming into the living room and seeing the tree and our stockings. That and going to Christmas Eve service with Mom.

    (7) What is the best toy/gift you've received on Christmas?
    My blue and white bear. We had a Christmas gift exchange in 5th Grade and we all had to bring a $5 or less gift to exchange. I went out with my mom and picked out a good gift (by 5th grade standards) and wrapped it all pretty to take to school. And it came time to do the gift exchange. I picked a gift in a paper bag and opened it to find a well loved, slightly beat up, grungy bear. I was crushed. I took it back to my desk and took it home to my Mom. She looked at it and said to me that although we had the money to go buy a gift this was probably the best that someone had. It was probably a beloved toy that they gave as a gift because they wanted to give their best. I still have that bear. It reminds me that sometimes we give the best we have and not to compare with others.

    (8) What is the worst toy/gift you've received on Christmas?
    Don't really have one. I love getting gifts and giving gifts.

    (9) What do you LOVE about the holidays?
    The atmosphere of music, lights, hustle & bustle, etc.

    (10) What annoys you about the holidays?
    People's impatience.

    (11) Do you prefer star or angel on top of a Christmas tree? Or something else?
    Angel...but right now because of our pets we bypass a tree and our angel sits on our mantel.

    (12) What is your family favorite recipe at Christmas?
    Mint Salad...my Mom has made this every Christmas since I can remember and I love it. Lime jello, Cool Whip, buttermints, and pineapple. Yumminess.

    (13) Are you a Grinch or a Who at Christmastime?
    A Who...because I just love everything about Christmas. Even though it is chaos in my job.

    (14) Christmas light displays - Love them or Hate them?
    Love going to look at them. But I haven't done one in a while.

    (15) Santas at the mall - Fun times or Creepy?
    CREEPY...I hated them as a child and I'm not too fond of them now. Although our preschool has a Christmas program with a Santa and he's ok because I know him.

    (16) Christmas cards - do you send them, yes or no?
    I haven't in a while. I used to but then I'd miss Christmas and Christmas cards in July miss something.

    (17) What is the best thing about Christmas, in your opinion?
    Jesus' birth. Does it get any better?

    (18) What is the worst thing about Christmas?
    People being impatient and rude while trying to Christmas shop

    (19) When do you put the tree up and take it down?
    Refer to #11

    (20) Out of the 12 days of Christmas, which day and item would you want your truelove to give to you?
    Swans a swimming...I think swans are pretty.

    (21) Why do you think that Grandma got run over by a reindeer?
    Because they needed to have a goofy song

    (22) Who is your favorite reindeer?
    Prancer

    (23) Do you believe in Santa Claus?
    I believe Santa Claus is very much a part of Christmas and we need to keep the spirit of giving alive.

    (24) What is your favorite smell at Christmastime?
    Sugar Cookies...I love the smell of them baking

    (25) What would make you happy at Christmas this year?
    Spending time with friends and family

    Monday, November 30, 2009

    Love One Another as I Have Loved You...

    This is my 100th post...I feel like it should be big, inspiring, meaningful, etc. So I'm thinking of having a give-away later this week but I'm not sure what. And the content of this post is something very dear to me...

    Jesus commanded us to Love One Another...it is considered to be the greatest commandment by many. But I personally think it is the hardest. I can handle the original 10 so to speak... I mean I'm not perfect with them but I get them. They are pretty clear cut.

    Love one another though...not so much. When the minister said love everyone...I wanted to raise my hand and say "Everyone?" quizzically. But I refrained. I know what his answer would have been. He challenged us to pick someone that we feel needs God's love in their life and covenant to pray for them and with them. He had us write it down for accountability. For myself I wrote down a close friend of mine who I felt betrayed by recently and our nephew. I feel that both of them need God's love in their life and need to feel it coming from those of us on earth. When we got to the car I commented to J that I hated sermons like that because they made me accountable. I can't just walk away and say Ok thanks I'm good now. I have to do something with it. Although I told J that God wouldn't have needed to make it a commandment if it were easy and everyone were easily lovable. So for this week and the time leading up to Christmas I'm working on showing God's love. It isn't always easy but God never promised it would be.

    We are preparing the way...

    Tuesday, November 17, 2009

    Sometimes what you need is a good swift kick

    So I've decided once again that God works in mysterious ways. I've always known this but sometimes I forget. And sometimes God wants us to leave our comfort zones for something better. I for one am reluctant. I don't like change in the big sense. I'm good with it in small does (although as I get older I'm finding that I'm not as fond of change) because change is inevitable.

    I have been in a rut of sorts in one aspect of my life. I stay because it works. I stay because I'm comfortable in my rut. I've decorated it (it even has accent pillows). I know where everything is. I know how everything works. I know how to play the game. So I remain in my rut. But recently something has occurred that is pushing me out of my rut. A trusted place has become not so safe so I'm looking at other avenues. I feel that God will lead me where I'm supposed to go when I'm supposed to go there. God has always done this when I listened.

    Now what to do when I get out of my rut...the options are plentiful. When I find out where I'm headed I'll share it with you.

    In the mean time...I will close with my favorite quote...

    "Sometimes you have to leap and build your wings on the way down." This was the quote I had on my dating page when I met my husband. He quoted it to me on our first date. It has been a good mantra.

    Back to working out

    So this morning after a couple weeks of not working out I had one of the best workouts I've had in years. Partially due to some pent up frustration about work (another story for another day) and partially due to hitting my stride. I loved it. It felt great!

    Food wise I'm doing better but not great. Due to a four day power outage we ate out a lot the end of last week and all of the weekend. But this week I've been trying to get back on track with food. We need to go to the store to replenish food we threw away during the storm. But life moves forward.

    Now we just need to find a good chimney and roof company in our area.

    Monday, November 2, 2009

    Getting back on the wagon

    So I'm no longer running along side the wagon...I'm hanging off the back. It isn't the best place to be but I'm on my way to getting securely in the wagon. This weekend I did OK with eating. Friday night we went out for Italian and it was delicious. But there was way too much of it and I ate it because I was starving. I think J and I need to start sharing orders or I need to box up half of it when the serve it. Because if it is in front of me I keep snacking. And I don't need to.

    But Saturday was much better. J had duty at work so we were up at 5:00 AM. I had a meeting with a florist at 8:00 AM. So I decided since the Y was on my way home from the florist I'd go in my workout attire. Which I think through off the florist a bit. But who cares it was 8:00 AM on a Saturday. So I went to the gym and did 30 minutes on the Arc then I did 45 minutes of weights. It was good to be back. I came home showered and laid down to wait for J to get home from duty. Saturday afternoon we went to lunch/dinner at 5 Guys. Which is not the most healthy but I felt OK about it since I'd worked out and I knew that was my main meal for the day.

    Sunday we got up sent J to duty. I kept the dogs out of trouble. When he got home we got ready and went to church. After church we went to Michael's to pick up our lamps for our centerpieces. We stopped by Wendy's for lunch. I had a Chicken Club sandwich but I only ate half. I had some french fries. But my worst downfall is Coke. I love Coke. I actually think that sweet stuff to me is like nicotine to J. I have to have it...I get grumpy without it...I feel better with it.

    Love is...

    Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-6

    The part of this verse that has been striking a cord with me a lot lately is "it keeps no record of wrongs." I am a firm believer in the philosophy of forgive...but hold onto it forever. I am working on this. I know it is not healthy. I know that you haven't really forgiven if you keep the record of wrongs. When J and I went through our "pre-marital" counseling recently our wonderful Pastor had us read this passage and focused in particular on the part about letting go and not keeping a record of wrongs. But he told us that God played a horrible trick on us women because he gave us an amazing memory. So we have the ability to remember the wrongs but the grace to let them go.

    I think God forgot to give me the grace to let them go. Currently we are dealing with an issue with an acquaintance who shall be referred to as S from here on out. S has a tendency to call when something is needed. And has on more than one occasion made the situation seem like S wants to come spend time with us...but while I'm there can you do? or can I use? or can I...? or can you...? It is tough because I'm not sure S is aware of this behavior but it is causing a wedge. J and I think we should talk to S about this but we're not sure it would do any good. But in communication it is always important to communicate your feelings even if the other side doesn't hear them at least you have done what you could. But S has a tendency to take things a bit personally so we don't want to make it feel like an attack. And we are trying to let go of the past things but at the same time we don't want to be doormats either.

    So we're praying about this situation and how to deal with it. And in the meantime we are trying to forget...as well as forgive....

    Thursday, October 29, 2009

    Creativity is rearing her head

    I've talked on and off about looking into some other creative outlets. I think I've found it. I'm going to continue working with beads and making beaded jewelry because that will always be a passion. But I'm also going to take classes on Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator so I can be more efficient and professional at desktop publishing and web design.

    I think work will even pay for the classes because it would relate to my job. We'll see.

    Wednesday, October 28, 2009

    She has the crud...

    Last week was a bit of a wash for working out for a number of reasons. This week hasn't been much better due to being under the weather. I stayed home from work sick on Monday and have been napping in the mornings after J leaves to try and catch up on my sleep. Perhaps tomorrow I'll try and get there. We'll see.

    We had our pictures taken Friday and although they turned out good I really don't like the way I look. I look dumpy. It is a delusion really...that I've lived under that I look really don't look as big as I do. So when I saw the pictures I was disappointed and shocked at my size. So next week is my restart...

    I want to feel better about how I look and feel.

    Wednesday, October 21, 2009

    I Love Working Out

    So I hadn't been to the gym for the past two mornings because I needed to not wash my hair before my appointment. So vanity won out. This morning I was back...and I did 20 minutes on the crosstrainer and then 40 minutes on weights. It felt good. I was so not prepared though...I forgot my headband to hold my hair back. I forgot my iPod. But they play music and I was able to get my hair back with a ponytail.

    I had something happen that hadn't happened before...I had a Zen moment if you will on the weights where I was in a groove and just kept going it was great.

    Monday, October 19, 2009

    My first 5K

    So this weekend was filled once again...but fortunately not a food fest.

    Friday after work I went to the salon to get my hair back to my natural color. I got there at 3:30 PM. I didn't leave until 8:00 PM. I had dyed my hair black and so it had to be bleached three times to get the color out. Then she put a glaze and a few highlights to brighten it back up again. Apparently 3 times of being bleached is rough on hair... who'd of thunk. But Carol did an amazing job. When I got home J was in a bit of an off mood and I was exhausted. So when he hit me with the idea of going me going to our friends' house to spend time with K while he went to see "Paranormal Activity" with R I thought he was crazy. But it worked out she was exhausted and not up for it so the boys went to the movie on their own. He tried to talk me into going but I knew I would not like scary so I passed. He got home late and said it was the scariest movie he'd ever seen. So glad I didn't go...I cleaned house instead. Much better...

    Saturday we went with our friends Traci and Sheila and Traci's guy, Gary to walk/run the 5K at the Shipyard. J ran it, Traci and Gary ran/walked it, and Sheila and I walked it. All and all we were happy. Then we went to IHOP for breakfast which was good because we were starving. When we got home I showered and went to Pin Ups for my haircut. (It was supposed to happen last night but it was so late it got rescheduled to today) It turned out great...Jackie is amazing. Then I got home relaxed a bit and we went to Johnny and Rachael's for their open house. We had fun and good food. Then we stopped at Tony's for a bit and came home.

    Sunday we went to church...then we stopped by Rod and Kendra's to pick up our heater. We hung out for a bit talking to Rod and Kendra. They are wonderful people. Then we went to lunch/dinner with Mom and Dad at the German restaurant. Very yummy! Then we went to Care-a-Lot for pet stuff and to Food Lion for people stuff. Then home. All and all a good weekend but way too short.

    Wednesday, October 14, 2009

    Pumpin' Iron

    So today was my first day doing weights on my own. I went in and did 20 minutes on the Cybex Arc Trainer which I love because I burn more calories in less time. Whoo hoo. Then I started my 10 machine workout as assigned by my trainer. I worked my arms, legs, abs, and back. It was good. Right now I'm doing 2 sets of 8 reps. I haven't done weights in a while so I wanted to be nice to myself and start out slow. It felt good.

    So my plan is
    • Monday=20 minute cardio + 40-45 minute weights
    • Tuesday=45-50 minute cardio
    • Wednesday=20 minute cardio + 40-45 minute weights
    • Thursday=45-50 minute cardio
    • Friday=20 minute cardio + 40-45 minute weights
    • Saturday=Activity of some sort
    • Sunday=rest
    This week though I have a 5K on Saturday and I missed Tuesday's workout so I'm thinking those kind of balance each other.

    Food wise I'm doing better the past couple of days. But still not getting all the fruits and vegetables I should. But I'm eating better than I have been.

    Tuesday, October 13, 2009

    Weekend Eating Fest...

    So if I wasn't a foodie going into this weekend I am certainly one now.

    Friday night we caught up with some friends we hadn't seen since Easter. We went to dinner at Hayashi Japanese Resturant which was very yummy and not too bad health wise. I had grilled shrimp with vegetables, rice, soup, and salad. And I had a glass of wine with dinner. Then we went to P & J's for wine afterwords. Still not too bad.

    Saturday J got up early and took puppies for a three mile walk. He was trying to let me sleep in but we live near an industrial yard and they were running a drill over the loud speaker. And our neighbor's dog was barking like mad. So I got up...made coffee...and cleaned house a bit. Then J and I had some time to ourselves before heading to the mall. We walked around the mall for a bit. (an hour and a half) We had lunch at the mall which consisted of a slice of pizza (ham & pineapple for me), a garlic roll, and a bit of pasta. Not the best but felt it was balanced by our walking. We went to the bridal shop to check on my veil. I negotiated a sweet deal on it because of a small flaw. Then we went home and napped. Before heading to my bosses' house for dinner. It was amazing...we had filet mignon with cheese on top, with fruit salad, brocoli casserole, salad, and a crescent roll. It was so very yummy. It was probably not as healthy as it should have been but it was a celebration of us getting married.

    Sunday we went to church. Then I got home and Dad and I went to the opera. It was La Boheme and they did a good job with it which was nice since we had seen it before. Then Dad dropped me off and we met Mom and Dad at the County Grill for dinner. It is a BBQ Smokehouse place. And usually I have a modest portion but in this case Prime Rib was the special. And I knew I should go for something else but it was too good so I ate it. Along with sides that weren't very healthy. But I really hadn't eaten much else throughout the day which is one of my bad habbits.

    Monday we woke up at the crack of dawn to go to the YMCA for our "fitlinx" orientation. J decided he didn't really need it because all he is doing there is free weights. So he waited downstairs while the trainer walked me through. He explained a new cardio machine that I liked alot. And then he walked me through ten different weight exercises to complete my training. I did well on all of them. And enjoyed doing them. Then we came home and took care of the puppies. We fixed a healthy breakfast. And we took a short nap before we went to meet J's sister and her fiance for bowling. We had a good time. M and I probably bored the guys to death with wedding talk but we had fun. Then we went to Ruby Tuesday's for dinner. I got a Prime Burger with the salad bar. I ate way too much again because I was uncomfortable when we left. I should have eaten half or split the burger with J. Note for the future. We then went to the store and to a couple other places to walk around for a bit. We headed home and took care of the puppies.

    I feel like the exercise we got countered the food we ate but I would have liked to have more exercise and less food. So today I am working on eating healthier. And I have my clothes with me to go to the gym after work and before my meeting tonight at work.

    Thursday, October 8, 2009

    Praying in Color

    At work we are offering a study of the book Praying in Color: Drawing a New Path to God by Sybil MacBeth. I decided to take it. A benefit of working in a church...I loved it. We wrote God's name (whatever we call God) in the middle...then we wrote names of people, situations, etc around it. We doodled around the names as we prayed about them. It was an enjoyable experience. As I read the book I'll let you know what I think.

    Tuesday, October 6, 2009

    Keeping at it...

    So I've been a member of the "Y" for about a week. I've been three times so far two last week and once this week. Each time I've gone for 45 minutes on the Cross Trainer (Elliptical). And the best part...I'm not sore afterwords.

    I have my weight machine orientation next Monday evening so I'm looking forward to adding weights to my workouts.

    I admit last Thursday I bailed because I had a late night at work...I was tired...I was hungry...and frankly working out was the last thing I wanted to do. But I missed it...this is good. I need to miss working out. On the weekends I plan on not working out because I'm more active anyway but if we make it there it is gravy.

    As far as eating we are doing better. We are not following a set program we are just eating healthier. We are:
    • Watching portions (I'm only fixing what we will eat)
    • Watching types of foods (More lean meats, more vegetables, less bread, less starches, whole grain, etc.)
    • Watching how I cook (Baking, Broiling, Pan Searing, etc)
    • Watching going out to eat (I've been cooking at home more)
    • Watching portions at restaurants (When we go out I leave food on my plate or eat half)
    I need to get to Fresh Market and Trader Joe's sometime soon to do some grocery shopping but that will probably wait until the weekend.

    Wednesday, September 30, 2009

    It's Official...

    J has officially been told he is going to be stationed on a boat in Japan come next Spring. I knew it was coming but it doesn't make the thought of him leaving any easier.

    Tuesday, September 29, 2009

    We joined the Y

    Last night we joined the Y. The paperwork is done...we paid our $7 for the rest of the month. We have our cards to check in. We have an appointment scheduled for orientation. We are good. We didn't work out last night because J had a soccer game and by the time the paperwork was done it was too late to start a good workout so tonight will be the first night. I'm looking forward to it. I miss it.

    We're also eating healthier. Last night I fixed very yummy broiled chicken that I had marinaded in Mrs. Dash's Lemon Pepper marinade. We weren't thrilled with the marinade it was a little too lemony for our taste but the chicken was nice and moist. I also fixed a Weight Watcher recipe that was really yummy...Balsamic Green Beans. It was easy...I used my Pampered Chef microsteamer to steam some Trader Joe's french green beans (a staple in my freezer) for about 3 minutes in the microwave. Then I melted a tablespoon of butter and mixed in a few teaspoons of Balsamic vinegar. Poured that over the green beans they were yummy.

    I was still hungry a bit later and J said "you're just going to be hungry" I disagreed so I went and got a glass of milk with a squirt of Hershey's...and I was good. We diet differently...he goes to extremes. I can't do that.

    Tuesday, September 22, 2009

    Changes

    Change is good. It is also inevitable. And I am making some changes. One of those is I have decided to cancel my Weight Watchers membership. I've decided to join the YMCA because for me I need exercise to lose weight. With us saving for a wedding I need to start looking closely at the budget and I decided swapping Weight Watchers for the Y is my best plan.

    I will continue to follow a calorie counting diet of 1600-1700 calories a day with exercise. I think this will work best for me. I need a bit more food to lose weight it is weird. And if I get too many days with too little food then I don't lose weight.

    And I'm hoping that my dress won't have to be altered too much so I want to lose some weight and tone up a bit. And I know I need to start exercising some more to get my self in better health. So here we go.

    Tuesday, September 15, 2009

    Weight loss

    So now that I have the dress. I cannot...cannot gain weight. I can easily lose weight and still have it fit but no weight gain allowed. Perfect plan through Thanksgiving and Christmas. lol. So I'm sticking with Weight Watchers and I'm going to go join the YMCA for exercise. While on vacation I didn't really eat too badly because we didn't snack all day which was good and we were moving around alot so that helped too. I go to my meeting Thursday so we'll see where we are. Whoo hoo.

    Monday, September 14, 2009

    So it's been a while...

    Sorry I promise I'm still alive...and everything is great. I went on vacation for two weeks and prior to that work kept me running ragged. So here is all the news that's fit to share.

    J and I went to his family reunion in Indiana. I got to meet the rest of his family I hadn't met. It was great I love his family. I could not have asked for better in-laws...and yes they are now officially my in-laws. J and I got married over Labor Day weekend. It was great. It was religious, fun, casual, etc...and we loved every minute of it. We had a retired Methodist Minster perform the ceremony and we had communion as our first meal with each other and our family. It was great. We are going to have another ceremony in January for my family and our friends. I can't wait. I already have the dress...it is perfect. The kind of dress that when I put it on Mom and I said..."this is it" it fits beautifully and gives me a figure better than I could hope for.

    Friday, August 28, 2009

    Some people...

    People fascinate me. They always have. But some people just manage to annoy me with their obliviousness to others. I stopped at Starbucks on my way to work this morning and there was a young woman behind me in line. She was very fashionable with the maxi dress, cute shoes, the Coach bag and sunglasses. But she was totally oblivious to anyone around her. She seemed like she was in her own little world and functioning there very well. A gentleman was trying to pick up a drink and she was standing against the counter where they put the finished drinks. He tried to move around her but she didn't seem willing to move. He said excuse me still nothing. Finally he said excuse me a bit louder and she moved but just barely. Then my drink came up and there was a similar routine. Now if she'd been on the phone I could see it but nope no luck there. Just oblivious. Now to be fair...maybe she just isn't a morning person and she hadn't had her coffee but she just seemed amazingly oblivious.

    Tuesday, August 25, 2009

    Ready for Fall...

    I'm so ready for fall...I love the cool crisp weather in the fall. Not so hot you can't breathe and not so cold you can't feel your nose to breathe. Cool enough for jeans and a t-shirt during the day but a sweater is needed at night. Football games, orange and yellow leaves, crisp air, the smell of fireplaces burning, hot cocoa, hot cider, chili or stew, baking, cuddling under a blanket, sweaters, scarves, etc. all the things that scream fall.

    And of course for me no journey to a new season would be complete without clothes...some of my favorites...







    Cool weather here we come...

    Monday, August 24, 2009

    Weekend Update

    So this weekend was really quite busy and full...not unusual for us really.

    Friday night...Friday night J and I headed over to Norfolk for a Tides game. It was Navy night so as part of the opening ceremony six young men and women said there enlistment oath. J could recite it right along with them. And they came up the aisle where we were sitting and he shook their hands to congratulate them. Of course he didn't have anything identifying himself as Navy but I thought it was a cool gesture on his part. I admit I'm a sap when it comes to all things Patriotic. The National Anthem still makes me misty. I guess it is growing up military and now being with a military man it is just in my blood. The game was actually decent usually when we go the Tides lose. That night they won 3-2 over the Braves. It was a close game which made it fun. And I got to see a guy in front of me eat a Deep Fried Twinkie. It was gross looking really and it looked like a heart attack on a stick but his son liked it. So I guess it works for some. Then they had really cool fireworks after the game and they had given everyone 3-D glasses to watch them. I thought it would be goofy with the glasses but it was actually kind of cool. Although it felt a little like a Pink Floyd lazer light show.

    Saturday...We didn't rush out of bed because we just weren't feeling it frankly. Then we got up and puttered around the house. I went to the store to get ingredients for the brownies and corn pudding I was making for Saturday night. I ended up going twice because I forgot the corn bread mix. Oh I was ticked. I hate when I have to waste time to go back to the store when I was just there. Then I spent the afternoon making brownies and corn pudding. We then came up to work where J helped me cover the hall bulletin boards that was an interesting task since the wrath of God was going on outside in the form of a thunderstorm that crazy. Then we went to one of two fantasy football drafts that I'm involved in. Poor J was bored out of his mind because we couldn't talk because we had to focus on our next pick. And I thought it might be somewhat enjoyable for him but it wasn't really. So for my next draft I'll either do it remotely online or I'll go by myself. We then went home to two very crazy puppies who really had way too much energy for 11:00 at night. So late night for us with an early morning for me on Sunday thanks to work.

    Sunday...I was up at 7:00 AM so I could go to work to start a slide show from our church's trip to Brazil. (My bosses don't do technology...they love it but it doesn't always love them) And then my Senior Pastor was planning an amazing surprise for his wife, our Associate Pastor. It was their 20 year anniversary and he surprised her with proposing to her again, a gorgeous cross necklace, a renewal of vows with his brother and sister there, and a reception. So I helped him get some things in place for that. Then I met my mom for breakfast. Our relationship is amazing now and it seems to keep getting better. (Not to jinx it) And then I went home to get J so we could go back at 11 for the surprise. It was great she was completely surprised. Then dinner at my parents house later Sunday evening.

    All and all a busy weekend for us but a good one none the less.

    Hanging off the back of the wagon...

    I'm back at Weight Watchers. I decided finally to switch meetings to the leader I really like so I'm going on my lunch hour on Thursdays. So this will probably become a Friday post but maybe not. So I was - .2 lbs. Not really much but since I hadn't been in three weeks the fact that I wasn't up was a victory. My total is now -5.2 lbs.

    I'm doing better with my eating but it is still not where it should be. I've decided not to kick myself over it. Babysteps are good and still steps. So we'll see how this week goes. Frankly I have my doubts since I admit...it is a stressful time right now and I'm a stress eater. Wish me luck.

    Thursday, August 20, 2009

    The Cross

    Rebecca over at Knit By God's Hand has on of my favorite Cross stories on her blog today. Go check it out. It is worth it.

    Wednesday, August 19, 2009

    Neglectful sort of...

    I've been a bit neglectful of my blog of late. Part of it is a crazy schedule thanks to work. And part of it has been some of the stuff going on and not going on in my life of late that I've been trying to wrap my head around enough to blog about it. So here it is possibly disjointed...definitely unfiltered...and completely honest. So be warned...Megan...Raw.

    Diet...Exercise...I haven't been doing so well at this the past few weeks. I completely forgot to log on to Scale Junkie this week mainly because I didn't do my weekly update. I haven't been to WW in a few weeks mainly because of schedules but really because I'm lacking motivation. This week I did go to the commissary and restock so I have good, healthy food in my house. I'm doing better. But due to some stress eating I ate a whole box of coconut clusters. I emotionally eat chocolate like J smokes cigarettes...is there such a thing as chain eating? As far as exercise I haven't been able to work out due to my knee but I've gone to physical therapy. But I feel like it is a rip off to pay $25 a session to do exercises I could easily do at home. So I'm going to talk to my Orthopedic Surgeon about that. And suggest a gym membership instead. We'll see. It is frustrating to me that I have lost my motivation...but I'm working on it to get it back.

    Work...work has kept me busy. It usually does but this week has brought many frustrations due to lack of knowledge on my part. I used to be really good a few programs/things. Now I'm OK at a number of things...I'm dull on my skills. I want to get better. I'm looking into classes for InDesign, Photoshop, etc. I used to know Quark and Pagemaker well but InDesign is the current standard. Besides a Covey would say it is good to sharpen your saw.

    Church...we joined the church the beginning of August in a combined service which both of us determined was not our cup of Joe. But due to other conflicts we haven't made it to our church the past two weeks. We miss it. We miss hearing Pastor Carl. He rocks as a preacher.

    Home...J is up for a new assignment come March of next year. The options aren't looking so great. One of the best to give you an idea is a solo tour to Japan for three years. It means more money. But money can't buy everything. And it would mean three years apart and probably only seeing each other once a year. Which would suck...a lot. So we have some decisions ahead of us that could take a bit of prayer and cause some stress. Also we are headed to his family reunion the end of this month which if he does this will be even more important so he can see his family before he goes.

    Wedding...J and I have been together for about a year and a half. We love each other dearly. We know we want to get married. We are not engaged. But we wrestle with the best way to do our wedding. With his family, my family, and our friends we're looking at around 150 people roughly. And I've got this down to bare bones. He has seven brothers and sisters and most of them have spouses and/or children. So right there we have close to 50 people. So if you have ideas, suggestions, etc. Think intimate, informal, fun, etc. wedding.

    Tuesday, August 11, 2009

    New Starts...

    I've made beaded jewelry really since I can remember. I started out adding beads to friendship bracelets and using a beading loom. Now I have a room dedicated to my craft. I am in the process of getting a business started to sell my jewelry. I want to do it right and completely so it is a process. But I'm enjoying it. So keep your eyes out for samples and updates....maybe even a give away.

    Does trying to get back on the wagon earn activity points?

    I've been MIA but I'm back. A few updates....

    Knee: Good news...no surgery. Bad news...physical therapy. So twice a week I'm going to physical therapy for about 30 minutes for now. It isn't really too bad it just costs me $25 a session and is sort of inconvenient. Life will go on...and I'll heal. The bad news is this puts my walking and other exercise on hold.

    Weight loss: I'm running next to the wagon. (It obviously isn't going too fast) And trying to figure out if that counts as activity points. I have been craving everything doughy, chocolaty, sweet, fatty, etc. and unfortunately I've been eating it too. The past two weeks I've missed my weigh-in due to scheduling conflicts. So I'm thinking I might switch to a week day meeting. Saturdays are just busy right now. And I'm in search of my good friend motivation...if you see him please send him my way.

    Tuesday, July 28, 2009

    Forgive and Forget

    I love football. I play in two fantasy football leagues. And many football players in my opinion are pampered and spoiled beyond what they should be just because of what they do. (this is true of most professional athletes)

    When Michael Vick got arrested for dog fighting I was appalled at the dog fighting and I applauded the NFL and the law for punishing him for his crime. Michael Vick has served his time for the crime he committed. He is now supposedly working with the SPCA to teach young adults about the harms of dog fighting. But apparently PETA does not think this is enough and has been quoted as saying Michael Vick should not be a role model to any child. Now I do not agree with dog fighting in any form...and I believe you should be punished for your crime...but I believe once you have served your time you should be clear. Michael Vick has served his time. The NFL has him on probation of sorts to come back and play. His career may never be the same. At this point I do not think he should be treated any differently than any other player. I think we need to teach children that role models are human...they make mistakes...they are punished for their mistakes...and then we forgive them and go on. Just as we should with anyone else. So Michael Vick may have made mistakes...but I think he can still be a role model assuming he has learned from them and is honestly changing.

    As Christians we are called to forgive...are professional athletes above that?

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 15

    So I guess I celebrated too early. I had a gain of 2.8 this week. Although part of the weight may be the brace I have on my knee...I don't think it weighs 3 lbs. But I also didn't move much this week because of my knee. So I'm guessing it is a combination of things. So this week I'm working on it. Portion sizes are an issue for me right now. I'm not paying as close attention to them as I was. So I'm going to watch that this week.

    Because of my MRI this past Saturday I didn't stay for the meeting but that is another goal for this week. It really does make a difference.
    Next week...I'll have a topic for you.

    Weigh-In

    Weigh-in: + 2.8
    Total: - 5

    Wednesday, July 22, 2009

    Knees and Dogs Don't Mix

    aka what I did this weekend...

    Friday night at 11:30 PM I picked J up from the airport. He looked rough because he and the boys had been out until 3 AM the night before...got up at 6 AM to start work and didn't get home until 11:30 PM. I felt a little bad for him but it was his own fault. So I wasn't sure what we'd be doing Saturday.

    Saturday morning I had a funeral for a friend's Dad at 11 AM and I wanted to go get weighed before that. So I went about my morning while J stayed home with the puppies. I had two friends having picnic/gatherings that day one at 3 PM an hour away the other at 4PM 20 minutes away. We decided since I'd missed the one at 3 the past two years and J had not met all of those people we'd take the dogs and go. We get there all is going well. We decide to take them off the leash since my friend has a big yard. They love it. I love my dogs and they are extremely fun loving energetic animals. My youngest (5 1/2 month old 40 lb) pit bull was running with Eva our oldest when he ran full speed into the back/side of my knee. My knee bent the wrong direction...popped...I fell...threw my drink on J and poor Ares kinda sat down with a "rah roh" look on his face. I got up with J's help and was propped up in a chair with ice for the rest of the day. Fortunately my friend is a nurse and she had Advil and an Ace bandage in her car. I hurt a lot. We ended up still going to my other friend's thing for a bit then I went home and iced it some more.

    Sunday I went about my day...went to church...went to see Harry Potter (more on that in a later post) and went to bed.

    Monday I woke up still in a fair amount of pain...and my knee buckled twice while I was walking on flat ground. So I called my doctor. Went to see her Tuesday she sent me to an orthopedic surgeon. He had the bedside manner of a porcupine. And it turns out all Ares did was twist my knee no big deal. Ice it. Keep off it. Advil, etc. but in the process of checking out the current injury we found out about an unhealed old injury. My knee cap instead of being in the center is way off to the right. He discussed physical therapy or surgery. The surgery would involve cutting ligaments to get it to move back or cutting the bone in my lower leg. Neither sounds fun or good. So I go for an MRI Saturday and we'll go from there. YAY!!

    Monday, July 20, 2009

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 14

    I went to the 11:00 AM meeting Saturday to weigh-in on my way to a funeral so I didn't stay for the meeting. But I got good news at the meeting. I was down 2 pounds and they complimented my face saying it looked thinner. I had had some issues with medications the past couple weeks and I think that was causing bloating. Now they have the medications under control and no more bloating. Whoo hoo.

    Weigh-In

    Weigh-in: -2
    Total: -7.8

    Wednesday, July 15, 2009

    Up in the Air...aka...life military style

    You gotta love the military. It keeps life fun and exciting. And you are always on your toes. Now is no exception...there are a number of things up in the air for us right now.

    First...J is up for Chief again. And they post the results normally around the end of July/ beginning of August. It is a bit of a stressful time because it is a big promotion for him and it includes some nice benefits including a pay increase. Last year we had things up in the air for a while because of him being up for it and he didn't get it. He was disappointed but it worked out well because we got to spend time with his family and I got to meet them. This year we are planning on going to his family reunion the end of August/beginning of September but if he makes Chief those plans go out the window. It is sort of bitter sweet...we want him to make Chief but we have some cool plans for the Family Reunion. Ultimately my prayer is for Chief. But that is in the board and God's hands now. So say a prayer, light a candle, cross your fingers, do whatever you do...keep positive thoughts that J makes Chief. And I'll let you know.

    Second...in March J will move to a new assignment. He is done with shore duty...which has made life very nice for us. And he has to pick a new assignment...the options aren't plentiful so right now we are looking at an overseas assignment for a year, a European assignment for three years, or an East Coast assignment for three years. His plan right now is that overseas and Europe would be unaccompanied. And a year I can handle...I'm not so sure about three with a visit every six months but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. It may be that none of them pan out. So we sit and wait. Gotta love the military.

    The joys of Churchy and Her Sailor :-)

    Tuesday, July 14, 2009

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 13

    Ok so apparently I celebrated a bit too early on my weight-loss victory last week. Apparently I didn't do so well this week. Although they changed my medication again so I'm going to my doctor Thursday to see if that is part of the problem. And Mom made a good point...I'd have to have eaten 10,000 calories extra this week to make up the 3.2 lbs. I know I didn't so I'm going with water weight thanks to medication, not enough water, and Virginia summer. I know it sounds like an excuse but I did eat well this week.

    Weigh-In

    Weigh-in: + 3.2
    Total: -5.8

    Meeting Topic: Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables
    I admit I love fruits and veges but I'm bad about eating them. She discussed some ideas for getting more. Homemade salsa, strawberry salsa, mixing them in sauces, salads, Caramel Apple Salad, etc. Most people admitted they got tired of eating the same fruits and vegetables over and over again so she suggested picking up a new fruit or vegetable or using a different recipe for a common one.

    After the meeting...I had a few other errands to run one of which took me over by the new Fresh Market. If you have one of these near you you must go. They are wonderful. The produce department could have kept me entertained for hours beautiful vegetables and fruit. Cherries, plums, peaches, apples, bananas, leaf lettuce, celery, artichokes, baby artichokes, asparagus, white asparagus, etc. a wonderful blend. So since I had just learned about getting more fruits and vegetables I went a bit crazy. I bought some fresh raspberries, celery, carrots, cauliflower, organic french vanilla yogurt, whole grain granola, Happy Belly juice, and some spinach/artichoke dip for a dinner I was going to later that night.

    And next time I go I'm definitely getting some of the wonderful meat from the butcher. It was so fresh looking. I think for J's birthday we are going to get some of the filets and grill them.

    Monday, July 13, 2009

    How Relationships Evolve...

    This weekend I took J to the airport for a work trip. He and about 3 other guys go for a week to do some training. Last year about this time I dropped him off at the airport and his buddies were already there. Basically he handed me the keys...kissed me real quick...said "love you" kind of quietly and said "see you in a week." Now we've been together almost a year and a half...we got there early, parked the car, went and got him checked in. One of the other guys was there so I asked J if he wanted me to wait with him or go head out. He said "we could get coffee and sit for a bit" so we did. And I commented to him about how times had changed compared to last year in our relationship. I reminded him how last year it was "kisses, love ya, bye" instead of sitting, etc and saying good bye in the airport. At first he tried to deny it...then he admitted we were still new etc last year...and he's grown, etc. and that he liked the current method better.

    He is great. I love him. And he fits me perfectly. And I him.

    Free Stuff over at Confessions of a Control Freak

    Like manicures? Who doesn't? Check out Confessions of a Control Freak for a really great give-a-way of manicure stuff. If you don't know...OPI is one of the best nail product companies out there. Good luck!

    More to follow later about the weekend.

    Thursday, July 9, 2009

    Light Bulb Moment

    I love when I come to a realization that has been staring me in the face. I eat much more when I am frustrated at work. And right now my co-worker is on vacation...we cover many aspects of each other's jobs when one of us is gone. Right now I'm tired and stressed and eating candy like I'm in the Willy Wanka factory. Not good. The day is almost over. Good.

    But I do have a recipe to share....

    Crescent Pizza Rolls (Point value depends on toppings)
    1 pkg. reduced fat crescent rolls...I used Kroger brand last night they worked great.
    1 pkg. light Jimmy Dean Sausage (could also use Canadian Bacon or Turkey Pepperoni)
    1 cup shredded mozzarella
    1/2 -3/4 pizza sauce
    sliced black olives
    sliced mushrooms

    Preheat oven to temperature on the crescent roll pan. Cook the sausage and drain well. I spread mine out on paper towels to absorb grease. Mix cheese and olives into sausage. Unroll crescent rolls on a cookie sheet. (I unrolled mine so there were four down each side with the wide part facing the center) Spread pizza sauce over the wide part of the crescent and a little up the narrow part. If using mushrooms lay them on the wide part. Divide your sausage mixture evenly among the rolls. Roll the narrow part over the mixture and "tuck" it under the wide part. Bake rolls for about 10 minutes or until golden. Let sit for a minute. Enjoy! I think kids would love these. I know J did.

    Wednesday, July 8, 2009

    Puppy Love...




    I haven't talked about my "babies" in a while so I thought I would share photos and a funny anecdote...

    The top picture is a game of tug...Ares gave it all he had and Eva just stood there looking at him with a "why are you here?" expression. The center picture is of Ares when we first got him...he wanted everything Eva had...her bone...her tug toy...just like kids. The bottom picture is my babies now...Eva is a year and a few months...Ares is about 5 months. Both are as adorable as can be and totally lovable. I love them. They are my children.

    And they are brilliant...Eva even rescued me in a time of need...J and I were cleaning out my house before I moved in to his. I was in the hall bathroom and he was in my master bathroom. I was out of toilet paper...he called Eva...attached toilet paper to her harness and then told her to find "mommy"...she did and I was rescued!! Gotta love my brilliant girl.

    Monday, July 6, 2009

    I'm Just Saying

    I work in a church. I am not a pastor. I have designed worship bulletins and even planned worship services in a crunch. I like to tell stories to people. I would ultimately love to become a public story teller. Possibly a pastor but I don't think so...but I am going to share one of my favorite stories...

    "Lost and Found"
    When I was little probably around 5 maybe 6 my Mom and I went to the BX (base exchange) one afternoon to do some shopping. Now as a child I liked to explore, wander, walk off, etc. whatever you want to call it. But I was usually pretty good at keeping Mom in eye shot. On this particular afternoon I wandered one direction and Mom obviously wandered another. When I turned to find her she was gone. I started to look for her but could not find her anywhere. I began to get concerned...about that time a nice lady found me and took me to the front of the store to the staff people. I explained I'd lost my Mommy. They assured me it would be fine they would help me find her. The real thing was I hadn't lost my Mommy at all I had wandered away from her and gotten lost. The very nice clerk asked me what my Mommy's name was...my response "Mommy" she said "yes but what is her real name"...again "Mommy." So she thought she'd try a different approach "what does your Daddy call her?" I stopped and thought (probably giving a glimmer of hope) and replied "Your Mom." The clerk was just getting ready to try another approach when my Mom showed up. She had been looking for me the whole time. And she decided that the front of the store was the best place to find me. She came to me. I think the clerk was relieved because she didn't have to figure out who my Mom was from my vague answers. And Mom was relieved that I was OK.

    The beauty of this story for me is that this is a perfect illustration of my faith journey. I started out with God. We were doing great. I might go exploring but God was always in my eye line. Then one time God was no longer in my eye line...but not because He had moved because I had moved away. And I admit it took me a bit to get to someone who could help me get back to Him. But the beauty of the story is I didn't have to find God. He was looking for me...I was lost but now am found. I admit the song "Amazing Grace" makes me teary every time. "I once was lost but now am found, twas blind but now I see." We do not have to find God. He is always there even when we do not see Him and particularly when we don't want to see him. I admit I often chuckle when people say "I've found God" or "I've found Jesus." I want to look at them and say "I didn't know they were missing." I am glad that God and Jesus are in their lives don't get me wrong...nothing brings me more joy. But I want them to realize...they were lost and God has found them not the other way around.

    The Lord has promised good to me.
    His word my hope secures.
    He will my shield and portion be,
    As long as life endures.

    It is through my faith that I have made it this far in my life. And I'm not sure how you do it without faith.

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 12

    Wow what a difference a week makes...the past two weeks I'd gained 2.4 lbs each week. I admit I was not happy. So I decided to start over...I went back and re-read the week 1 materials. What a difference it made. I went back to following the program much more faithfully. It paid off...

    Weigh-In
    Weigh-in: -4.2
    Total: -9

    I was so excited I almost did a dance. But they were busy so I didn't want to delay those behind me. But it works when you work it. Now this past weekend I didn't do as good but I have this week to get back on track.

    Meeting Topic: Surviving the 4th
    I usually go to the 11:00 AM meeting on Saturdays...because of the holiday my meeting place was closed on Saturday so I went to the 11:00 AM meeting on Friday. I had a great time...it was a bit crowded because of them being closed on Saturday but the leader was the same leader I had my first (maybe my second) time I did WW. It was great. She is a great leader...she's fun...she's knowledgeable...she's frank...and she runs the meeting well. I loved it. I can't go to her meeting at my center on Friday's at 11:00 AM unfortunately but there is a meeting led by her at 12:30 PM at the center by my office so I think I may switch over there. We'll see. I'd love to be back with her.

    As for the meeting...we were all given a paper plate and asked to draw to scale the food items we'd be eating at our picnics and to guess the points. Well most of us guessed high...high. And when she told us how much we actually eat and what the points were we were surprised. I liked the plate trick for planning. I'm a visual person and so seeing it in actuality works for me. I was surprised at some of my overestimating on points. I don't think I underestimated one thing on my plate which is odd for me. Usually I think I'm not doing that bad and then when I calculate it it is horrible. I think the tools are really working for me this time and my mindset is changing. Finally!!!

    Monday, June 29, 2009

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 11

    I set goals last week. I was going to do better with my eating and start getting exercise in more often. I didn't do either very well. I had some really good days followed by some really bad days. I drank more water but I also drank a fair amount of regular Coke. I ate more fruits and vegetables but I also ate brownies, cream cheese filled pretzels, York peppermint patties, ice cream, Arby's potato cakes, raisinettes, Taco Bell Nacho's, etc. (sometimes all in the same day). I will say I enjoyed all of them. I did not enjoy what they did to me on the scale. So in honor of the 4th of July which was a new start for our country...I am starting again. This is the point where I would usually give up on Weight Watchers and go back to eating what I want...not this time. I will get over this hurtle. (Maybe not today I've had an OK day eating but not great.) I want to lose weight...I want to be healthier...I want to have more energy...I want to look at myself in the mirror and go "Dang girl, you look good" I know I can get there it will take time and effort.

    Weigh-In

    Weigh-in: +2.4
    Total: -4.8

    Meeting Topic: ????
    To be honest I'm not sure what the topic was at the meeting. I got there a little bit late and the leader was talking about her health again. J and I had some things to get done that day so I decided to head home instead of listening to the health update. I think I will be looking for a new meeting. So today you get to hear a topic that I think is appropriate.

    Megan's Meeting Topic: Just Say No
    I am horrible at saying "no" to food, people, my dogs, my family, my friends, etc. If someone says "Meg can you...?" I usually say yes. If someone offers me food that I like I usually accept. And sometimes have additional helpings. One of my biggest downfalls is food in our workroom. If there is cake, cookies, bread, etc. I will have some...usually multiple times. I need to learn to walk away. My friend says weight loss is as simple as will power. If you know you shouldn't eat it don't eat it. (she said this as she was eating a bacon cheeseburger) And I argue if it were really that simple we would not have a nation with a weight problem. I know what I should not eat. I know what happens when I eat it. Yet I still eat these things. I think that it is also deciding which is worth more...the calories from the food and enjoying it momentarily or walking away and losing the weight I want to lose. I also think it is about planning, time, desire, energy, self-worth, and many other things. We often try and oversimplify things...eat less...exercise more...lose weight. If you have will power you'll lose weight. Yes both of these things are true but this isn't all there is to it.

    As a nation we are horrible about taking care of ourselves. We often wait until it is too late or we are in crisis to do something. I know for myself I take on way too much for other people from actual physical tasks to worry. It is not my worry to take on but I do. So I've decided I need to start saying "no." I will be respectful...it will be a polite no...not a "heck no are you crazy" but it will be a "no." Recently some friends of mine and I were out to dinner...one of them ordered a high fat appetizer. She didn't eat it all because she was depending on the table to help her...we didn't because we had our own food. She then said she was going to box it up and send it home with me. I politely said no because J and I are both on Weight Watchers and didn't want that type of food in our house. She seemed a little thrown but as someone who had lost a lot of weight she took it for what it was me trying to be healthy not something personal. I all too often worry about offending people when I say no. I don't worry about how it affects me. I am going to start thinking about myself in the process. This week we have a cake in the workroom. I may ask my co-workers if we can put it across the hall where it isn't in front of me all the time. I'm not sure how this would work for them but I figure it can't hurt to ask. The other advantage to saying no...I can get back to some of the things I used to do with my time saved. I miss some of the things I used to do when I had the time. I miss my beading. I enjoy my beading. And if I said no to a few things I could get back to it. So "just say no" it is ok to take care of yourself first.

    Friday, June 26, 2009

    I'm getting older...

    So I'm not sure when this happened but I'm getting older. How do I know this? Well the obvious signs...gray hairs, youth that I babysat when they were 5 years old are now graduating from college, music and tv shows that were new when I was young are now "classic," clothing I wore is now making a "come back", and of course looking at myself in the mirror. Although I've been told I really haven't changed much since high school.

    OK...pictures...see for yourself...

    My high school graduation picture...1995....

    My profile picture from 2006. You be the judge...lol








    Another major thing that is telling me I'm getting older...friends parents dying. I'm not sure when my generation got old enough to start losing parents. Some had died due to cancer but now we're losing them to age. A friend of mine's (from youth group) mother died this week. I hadn't really talked to my friend or her mother in years but I adored her mother. She was the kind of woman who brought enthusiasm and joy to everything she did. She was a teacher and taught many both in and out of school. She will be missed. And my heart and prayers go out to my friend. I can't imagine losing my Mom. The thought makes me teary eyed. I know that her mother is in a better place but I'm sure my friend would rather have her here. Life is short...tell those around you that you love them often. And pray for those who have lost loved ones.

    Thursday, June 25, 2009

    I've learned that...

    Sometimes I'm in a bad mood and I don't know why. And sometimes in a ironic joke that bad mood coincides with my "monthly visitor". I have to tell you that the consequences of this crossing are bad... "Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together... mass hysteria!" (Ghostbusters quote) bad. And the worst part of it is that J often gets the brunt of it because he's the one I go home to. It isn't fair to him I know this so I try to keep it under control. But last night I couldn't control it...and he dealt with me as he usually does. He balances me the way I balance him.

    And it is interesting because although we have days where he is a jerkish or I'm a bit of a witch we get through them because we respect each other, love each other, and talk. Sometimes in the moment we seem lost but we always get to the other side. Both of us have been through divorce...I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy it sucks, but it was also one of my best learning experiences about myself, other people, and the world. I try to take the wisdom that I gained from that experience and pass it on to others. Sometimes they listen, sometimes they decide to go the trial and error route, and sometimes they tell me to shut-up. (Mostly they say thank you.) And so for today I want to share some things I've learned that...

    • If you have something to say...say it to the person not about them. No problem is solved by triangulating someone else into the equation. Deal with the person. It will help you and them. (Exception: I believe professional counseling can help in a lot of cases...and recommend it to people often...a neutral third party is a blessing.)
    • It is not always just the other person's fault. All too often in life we try and put the blame on someone else...our parents, siblings, friends, significant others, etc. The reality is a relationship has two people...which means two people bring gifts and two people bring challenges. If you think it is all the other person's fault take a good look at yourself and see what have you brought to the situation...is it all good? (Exception: In the case of abusive situations it is not the victims fault...it is all the fault of the the abuser. Get out of that situation.)
    • You cannot truly love someone if you don't truly respect them. And vise versa...if someone does not truly respect you they can't truly love you. Don't put up with people who don't treat you with respect. Address the situation (calmly) and if it does not change reaccess the situation and see if it is worth staying. Sometimes people cannot respect you because they do not respect themselves. And realize you may still love them and that may not change. That is OK.
    • Change is good...but be aware not everyone will like it. Change is inevitable. And it can be exciting, frightening, challengeing, growth inspiring, and benefitial. But sometimes personal change will occur in spite of what is going on with the other person. Respect where they are...they are not where you are but that is OK.
    • You have to have faith. Some would say have faith in something...I say have faith in God. God is an amazing God. No matter what happens God is there and will never leave you. God wants to have a relationship with you. How you have this relationship is personal but for me it comes from my art, my work, and prayer. For you it may be totally different...that is OK.
    • Patience is a virtue. God does not work in our time. If we got everything we wanted when we wanted it the world would be in chaos. And if you want to make God laugh...tell God your plans. The cliche is true...good things come to those who wait. "If you rush a miracle, you'll get a bad miracle." Mad Max, Princess Bride
    • There are good people out there. Unfortunately the reverse is true. But have faith that the good will prevail. And don't give up hope. Even if you have encountered bad people in your life don't become cynical...continue to love and trust just be a bit more picky about who you trust. Assume the best not the worst.
    • COMMUNICATE...COMMUNICATE...COMMUNICATE I have a degree in Communication so I admit that I feel very strongly about the importance of communication. But I cannot emphasize this enough...so many problems can and would be resolved if people communicated. Don't assume that you know what someone meant...talk to them and confirm it. Don't assume they know what you meant either. You know what happens when you make assumptions.
    • Forgiveness is the best gift you can give. There are people in your life who will hurt you intentially and unintentially. You at some point need to forgive them even if they don't ask for it. Yes this is hard. No I won't pretend that I'm good at it. But when I have truly forgiven people I feel better. And I remind myself that Jesus was betrayed by the very people he came to save and his final words were to ask God to forgive them.
    • Laughter is wonderful. A serious life is a wasted life. "Those who can laugh at themselves will never cease to be amused." (not sure who said that) I believe that laughter can heal and that laughter gets us through a lot of crap. J makes me laugh often sometimes at him and sometimes with him. It is one of the many many things I love about him.
    • You need to take care of yourself. Eat well, exercise, relax, pamper yourself, read, do what makes you happy at least once a day. You are of no use to others if you don't take care of yourself.
    • Last but not least love.

    Monday, June 22, 2009

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 10

    So blogging keeps you honest. And checking in keeps you focused. I went to the early meeting this week. Our regular leader was out so we had a substitute. I liked her a lot and I liked going to the 8:00 meeting because then I had the rest of the day. My results on the scale weren't so good. But I admit I'm not surprised. Last week was a rough week food wise. I worked late a lot and had a stressful week and I did what I do best...stress eat. And it caught up with me. But that is OK. I will work on it more this week. And weight loss is a journey. There are ups and downs. I plan on going back and rereading my materials from earlier weeks to help me restart. And I also know part of the weight could be related to girl issues. But I think the food is more likely.

    Weigh-In
    Weigh-in: +2.4
    Total: -7.2

    I admit it is only 2 lbs. It is not a big deal. It can be lost again. And I am learning what things work and what things don't. That is important. And I know I will never be perfect about it but that is the reality of my life. Perfection is impossible.

    This week I'm going to add activity. I've been trying to do that for a while but it hasn't worked. Mainly I haven't made it a priority. This week I'm going to try and get a 30 minute workout in three times. I'll let you know how it goes.

    I'm also trying the Berry Weight Watchers smoothie. It is their summer flavor. I'll let you know how it is.

    On the journey.

    Meeting Topic: Breakfast

    Your Mom was right...breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It gets you going and more importantly it gets your metabolism going. So here is how the session went...

    Excuses
    The most common excuse was lack of time. Here is a list of ideas in 5 minutes or less.
    • smoothies (WW of course)...lovin' the WW Berry Smoothie...very summery
    • oatmeal w/fruit
    • wraps
    • fiber cereal with milk
    • yogurt
    • waffle
    • pb, nutella, banana wrap
    • string cheese
    • hard boiled eggs (made ahead or bought)
    • whole wheat muffin with egg & cheese
    ~~Preparation makes a difference. ~~

    Ideas (from fellow members)

    • cereal
    • cheese toast
    • eggs, turkey bacon, 1/2 bagel
    • egg mcmuffin
    • WW oatmeal
    • ham & cheese egg roll
    • cheese tortilla
    • already cooked bacon
    • pancakes
    • waffles
    Variety

    Make sure you change it up. Your body gets used to food...you get bored...that can lead to disaster.

    Filling Foods


    Go for filling foods they stay with you longer.

    • grits
    • oatmeal
    • eggs
    • cream of wheat (for me this goes fast...crazy fast)
    Fuel Up

    Just like you wouldn't go on a long trip without filling the gas tank of your car you shouldn't go on your "long trip" without filling up your tank. You need food to have energy. Food is good.

    Sharing Favorites

    The leader gave us a recipe for a "baggie omelet" you put your omelet ingredients in a freezer bag and put it in boiling water for 13 minutes until cooked. She said it was good for a camping trip and/or on the go. (I myself think this seems like more work than doing it in a pan or the microwave but that is just me.)

    So eat your breakfast. It is good for you. And Mom was right.

    Believe the Love Story

    J and I go to a great church. The church family is welcoming and encouraging, the pastor is a wonderful preacher and counselor, and they have a great choir. We started attending there in October and just finished our membership class recently.

    Yesterday morning our Pastor was on fire while preaching. He was preaching on the scripture from Mark 4:35-41...the story of Jesus calming the storm. His title was "Have You Still No Faith?" related to the question Jesus asked the disciples because they were afraid and concerned about their safety during the storm. They had been with Jesus through so many things and yet they still were afraid of what might happen and unsure of the outcome.

    I admit this makes me feel better about my own faith. If the men who walked on earth with Jesus and knew first hand of God's love had concerns and doubt then me having doubt is normal right? Pastor C went on to talk about how God is with us in the storms of life...both the literal hurricanes that hit our area but more importantly the storms of life that aren't predicted. The loss of a job, financial struggles, the loss of a loved one, a child gone astray, difficulties in marriage, divorce, etc those are also storms in our life and God is with us. I needed this sermon. I have a great life...I have my faith, I have a wonderful family, I have a good job, I have an amazing boyfriend, I have a great group of friends, etc. I am not in a major storm. I have been through some in my life but not right now. I am however in a minor storm. And I realized that I need to have faith. I need to trust that God is there and will be there. Life will be fine. God has never let me down and I don't see it happening now. I have faith. For some this sounds cliched. For me this is a fact. I don't know how you do it without God. I don't want to find out.

    Pastor C gave the following quote as a summary of his sermon..."Faith is not a human action but it is a reaction to the love of God." God wants us to believe the Love Story. God loves us...because God loves us we have faith. All love begins with God. My love for others is a reflection of God's love for me.

    I am loved. I have faith. I love others. God loves you.

    Monday, June 15, 2009

    Weight Watcher Weigh-In Week 9

    OK so this week at the meeting was a bit uneventful weight loss wise...other than the fact that their computers were down due to scheduled maintenance which seemed silly to me on a Saturday. But what do I know. I did not go down...but I didn't go up either. So I call it a victory. I know one of things I need to work on this week is my water intake. When I'm good about my liquids my weight goes down. I know this...I plan on focusing this weekend.

    Another cool thing that came about...I made a WW buddy. A woman next to me was lamenting that she was horrible at tracking and just needed someone to keep her honest. I offered to text her daily to check and see how she was doing. Also a friend from college is in my meeting too. And another friend is considering joining with me. I like having people there that know I should be there it keeps me honest.

    Week 9

    Weigh-In: 0
    Total: -9.6

    Weekly Meeting Topic: Burn Calories Not Cash

    So this weeks' meeting was supposed to be about "Ways to get fit for free * or cheap" and she had a list of ways to save money on the chart...here's the list.
    • Take a walk $7,834
    • Ride a bike $7,714
    • Buddy-up $1,300
    • Watch TV or Web $1,200
    • Clean-up Clutter $3,600
    • Make Your Gym $1,200
      work for you
    We got through part of the list but not all in the hour I was there because our leader took the first 20-30 minutes to talk about her personal health problems. Which to be fair she has some serious issues but I felt like we were a captive audience. So to be honest I'm not exactly sure how these save you money according to Weight Watchers but I'll give you my take.

    Take a walk...It costs very little to take a walk. You need a good pair of shoes and that is about it. Now in my case my trip to work is not walkable or bikeable but I have been known to walk to the 7-11 near my house. Now that our weather is getting hotter and more humid walks become a little bit less likely but still doable.
    Ride a bike...if you live close to work, errands, etc take your bike. It certainly costs less than putting gas in your car.
    Buddy-Up...if you know that you have to meet someone you are less likely to skip a workout which means if you've joined a gym you're not wasting money. And it keeps you dedicated.
    Watch TV or Web...if you already have a Monthly Pass with Weight Watchers there are a lot of workouts on the website you can use. Or just google workouts...there are a lot of free resources out on the web.
    Clean-up Clutter...first off this gives you activity points. But you can also turn around and sell it at a garage sale, eBay, Craigs List, etc and make some money.
    Make Your Gym Work for you...I can't tell you how many resources most gyms offer that are often overlooked by members. I love the Y for some of the extras they give and many other gyms offer classes, screenings, leaders, dietitians, etc. as resources. Find out what your gym offers and use it.

    Friday, June 12, 2009

    Possible name change...

    for the blog not me...

    When J and I first started dating a good friend of his referred to me as "churchy." Not in the adjective since but as a nickname. I haven't let him live this down. I actually thought it was kind of cute since I work in a church. And have thought about renaming my blog..."Churchy & Her Sailer" we'll see.

    Hope you have a great weekend!!!

    Thursday, June 11, 2009

    Temptation

    So my post today is about temptation. And usually I discuss food temptation but today I'm also going to discuss other temptations.

    Temptation # 1 ~ Food
    I am learning a lot about myself and my relationship to food as I go through Weight Watchers. I am very much an "if its there I'll eat it" kind of person. I have a very hard time resisting sweets in particular. Today I thought I was doing better. I went to Starbucks to get myself a non-fat latte (one of my favorite ways to get my milk) and I decided in a moment of weakness to order a toffee bar. Well I get back to work and before eating it I decide to check the points value. And it came out to be a whopping 9 on the points value. I decided I still wanted some but would only eat half....yeah that didn't work out so well. I ended up eating the whole thing. Fortunately I have a healthy dinner planned so I'll be OK point wise but I get frustrated when I do stuff like that. But I remind myself no one is perfect and learn from this and go on.

    Temptation # 2 ~ Judging People
    Matthew 7:1-2
    1
    "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." 3 "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in someone else's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from the other person's eye.

    I like many people have a horrible habit of judging people for things I would never do while ignoring the multitude of things I would do. I do this with J and his smoking although I had an epiphany about that and have been much less judgmental about his smoking. Although I will admit I think $5 a pack is insanity...until I think how much I pay for Starbucks, etc.

    Lately I have had some issues with friends feeling the need to judge other people's behavior. You know as my co-worker says...before you judge walk a mile in their moccasins. And if you don't want to be judged don't judge others. I have a good friend who has gone through a pretty major transformation physically, mentally, and emotionally. I'm very proud of her and how far she's come. And she gets frustrated with people who judge her for how she's living her life and then turns around and judges others. I'm working on a nice way to say...hey now Ms. Pot...speaking as a Kettle I know it is hard to stop and easy to do. But you have to be careful judging others because you too may get judged.

    Temptation #3 ~ Spending Money
    I am horrible at holding on to money. I love to give it to people. Spend it on things. Waste it. I've made some very unwise decisions money wise over the years and I'm working to fix that. But it is tempting to burn through my money. I don't know where I get it from either. My parents are very good at handling money. And so is my brother.

    Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. ~ The Lord's Prayer