Wednesday, January 28, 2009

a favorite picture

My uncle (dad's youngest brother) and I circa 1988.  Love this picture... and my uncle.  :)
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Friday, January 9, 2009

Urgent Prayer Request

This is not what I had planned for our company girl coffee, but I'm on my way out the door.

Please pray for my sweet papaw.  He's in the ICU in Dallas.  He's been in the hospital since the week of Christmas.  I'm about to head down there because they have put him on a respirator and a feeding tube, and they're going to do a lung biopsy--they're not sure if he's going to make it.

I know that I will see him again in heaven, but that doesn't curb the sadness my family is feeling now.  Thank you, friends.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Food for Thought

Shaun Groves has an interesting post on his blog today.
Seth Godin, a marketing leader and accidental theologian, writes in his newest book Tribes that fundamentalism is the opposite of curiosity. He says “A fundamentalist is a person who considers whether a fact is acceptable to his religion before he explores it.” He says a curious person “explores first and then considers whether or not he wants to accept the ramifications.”
Click here for more.

Do you feel open to curiously studying what you believe?  What you think you believe?  I am so thankful for the attitude of intellectual curiosity that I got at OBU.  I was genuinely encouraged to explore my beliefs and discover new truths.  There is a staunch encouragement to re-examine what you think you know is in the bible, to discover what's really there, and to be willing to examine all facets of the Christian life and doctrine.  Where do you fall on the continuum from fundamental to curious?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

WFMW: Getting fit!

I have a confession to make: I don't have an athletic bone in my body.  The evidence?  In school, gym was always my least favorite class.  I've never played on an organized sports team (unless you count inter-murals in college... and I'm not sure you could call that organized!!).  In fact, after what would be light to moderate exercise to other people, I've been known to feel faint and even pass out!  

So, when I realized that my weight was creeping up the scale, and dieting alone wasn't getting where I wanted to be, I had a dilemma--how could I go from practically no physical activity to some kind of work out?

For me, the solution was the Couch to 5K workout. (Click that link to get the whole plan).  Thist workout is designed to get you from being a couch potato to running a 5k in just 9 weeks.  It gradually gets you started with interval training, where you alternate walking and jogging/running (jogging for me!!).  This is something even I can do.  Before the holidays, I worked my way up to week three.  Every week was challenging, but do-able.  Then, there was finals, and traveling, and, well... suffice it to say I'm starting back!  Yesterday I did the week 1 workout again, but I think I'm going to move straight back to week 2... week one was actually easy for me!

And--the greatest part.  There are some free podcasts on iTunes by a guy named Robert Ullrey.  These podcasts have techno-ish workout music, and Robert chimes in at the appropriate intervals to tell you when to walk or run, as well as to give some encouragement.  It's great!  If you do a little searching around iTunes, you can also find a podcast that is just silence with someone giving you the instructions.  That way, if you have garageband or a program like it, you can add your own music.  Of course, you don't have to use the podcasts at all if you have a stopwatch or a clock on your treadmill!

Anyway, the Couch to 5k workout is working for me.  So far, combined with eating healthier (a 1200ish/day diet), I've lost 9 pounds.  I'm half way to my goal!

For more WFMW posts, check out Shannon's blog, Rocks in my Dryer!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Meal Planning

In an effort to keep my resolution to keep up with Rachel Anne's Small Things at Home Sanctuary, and because it's Monday, I did a doozy of a meal plan today.  Rachel challenged us to plan meals for the month using categories.

My categories, and the meals they include (Most are links to the recipe!):
Chicken: Chicken Piccata, Lemon Pepper Chicken, Oven BBQ Chicken, Skillet grilled chicken
Beef: Mini-Meatloaves, Hamburger Pockets
Fish/Pork: Salmon, Tilapia, Tenderloin, Pork Chops

And I have some substitutions, too: Rotel Chicken, Honey Mustard Chicken, Quesadillas, PIzza Rolls, Homemade Pizza, and Baked Raviolis

I also have two places for new recipes, because I'm always wanting to try something different.

Then, based on OUR schedule, I plugged the categories into the calendar, and then plugged meals into the categories.  The result is a really nice meal plan with four weeks of meals that our family likes to eat.  I like it!

This week, we're having:
Oven BBQ Chicken, green beans, rice
Baked Raviolis, buttered corn, salad, sourdough bread
Salmon, brocolli, butternut squash

Sunday, January 4, 2009

And we're off!

(click to see full sized)
Chocolate Fall by Kasia Designs; Tape by Vicki Stegall; Netters Alpha by Scarlet Heels; Paper Tear by Jess Gordon

Have you heard of the Amazing Digi-Scrapping race?  Teams of two digital scrapbookers "race" around the online scrapbooking world, completing two challenges a week to fulfill the requirements set by whatever site is hosting the challenge.  This is my first layout of the race!  The challenge set forth was to rip a picture into at least three pieces, and include journaling on your layout.  Here's my answer!

In case you can't read it, the journaling says: 
During our senior year, Rachel, Maren, Andrea, and I got together for a Grey's Anatomy and LOST watching party every Thursday night. I depended on them to keep the mood light, even when LOST was scaring the poop out of me! Graduation came and sent us in all directions... Even though I'm still in Oklahoma, Rachel is in California, Maren is in Colorado, and Andrea is in Missouri! Now the new season is starting in about two weeks. I sure will miss my girls--I don't know how I'm going to get through watching it alone!
Do you want to see what my partner comes up with, or to follow us along the race?  Then check out our team blog: The Cosmo Chicas!!

Garlicky Butternut Squash

New recipe on my recipe blog... and it's a GREAT one!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

A New Year

Three days ago, laying on a double-sized air mattress with Jonathan and two dogs (don't worry, one belongs to the friends we were staying with), we began to think out our resolutions for the year. I'm not big on keeping resolutions. 

I love to make them--the fresh start of a new year gives me the same feeling as a blank journal, so full of the promise of what is to come. However, just as I tend to write a few entries in my journal and leave the rest blank once it's not new anymore, I usually stick to my resolutions for a few weeks or days, and then they fall by the wayside as the rest of life comes around.

I don't have any reason to think that I'll do anything different this year, but I am going to try. I also think that it's helpful to reflect on the past and look forward to how you want life to be different, even if it's not in the form of specific resolutions to be tackled. There are lots of things that I want to change about myself--I want to cook more. I want to keep a neater house. I would like to be more dedicated to my quiet times. But I feel confident that if I set more than just a few goals, I will fail at all of them. So, here is what I did come up with:

1. I want to embrace simplicity in my life. I want this to be my motto for 2009. Simple. Simple. Simple. Seek it, enjoy it, revel in it. This applies to my home--do I really need another spoon, or that shirt that looks similar to the one I already have? No. Declutter. It also applies to my attitude. Take joy and pleasure in a good cup of coffee, a bird's song, or an open window. Finally, it will apply to my commitments. I want to (as much as is possible) simplify my schedule. If something is required for school, I'll do it. But I'm not going to overcommit myself.

2. I want to scrap 50 pages this year. I hear people making scrapping goals in the multi-hundreds, but I know I would not make it there. This goal gives me a little less than 1 per week, and since I'm doing the Amazing Digi-Scrapping Race (don't know what that is? want to see our team blog? It's right here), I know I'll do 2 pages a week for the next six weeks and get a head start. I want to make sure that Jonathan and my memories are recorded, and I'm going to do that by scrapping more and shopping/surfing less.

3. I want to lose 10 pounds and stay within a 5 pound range of that number. It is amazing what a difference eating smaller portions of healthier food, paired with a little exercise, has done for me. Since October, I've lost 8 pounds (I was down 10, but I gained 2 over the cruise and the holidays... a number I'm happy with)! I want to continue these healthier habits and get back down to a weight that I feel really good about.

4. I want to commit to doing Rachel Anne's Small Things. Have you heard of the small things? Rachel runs a blog, Home Sanctuary, on which she encourages women to make their home a sanctuary for their family. She posts one simple small thing that you can do every day to achieve this goal. Sometimes it's a cleaning task, sometimes it's a word of encouragement to a family member, and other times it's a spiritual truth. She has been posting them for a whole year, and while I faithfully read her blog, I rarely do the small things. This year, I want to do them at least three times a week.

So... Those are my goals. I'm feeling good about them and their likelihood of getting completed. I'm feeling pretty good about 2009 in general, actually. I think it's going to be a good year. Happy 2009 to you. :)