Monday, April 26, 2010


The guys were still asleep. I was awake. Quiet. I went downstairs to exercise. Total Strength. It did not seem as difficult this week. Did I not work as hard this morning, or I am getting in better shape?

After a quick shower, Hubby was at work, and Boy was awake. Back downstairs, I started cleaning the kitchen, and Boy asked, "Momma, what are you doing?" Ha! Apparently it has been so long since I really cleaned that he had forgotten what it was.

This week everyone here in my family is healthy and together. With that being the most important thing, my focus now is going to be this house.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

She Phoned Back

I suppose that this will be a continuation of yesterday's blog post because at 9:23 PM yesterday, the friend of our friend returned my call. If the call had gone to voicemail, it would have been much easier. After a duration of 25:28, I finally got off of the telephone (by force). Now I am sorry to say that my previous notions about this woman have been strengthened. HOWEVER, I also now feel a bit more sorry for her.

No, I do not feel sorry for her because of her problems or her situation. I feel sorry for her because she seems not only to have "made friends with the darkness," but to actually take steps to stay as miserable and uncomfortable as possible. This is something that I cannot understand. From the outside it seems that with a few small, easy tasks, she could remove some obstacles and feel so much better. I understand that sometimes things may seem easier from the outside, but sometimes the answers are also quite obvious.

For today, I am going to ask for you to prayer for this woman and her husband. Pray that they find what they need. Peace, comfort, healing...God knows. Right now, just take a minute and say a quick prayer for her.

Then, please feel free to comment and share if you have a prayer request or praise on this day. I will be sure to say a prayer or each comment posted, and possibly others who read your comments will do the same. Thank you, and I hope that you see and feel the Lord's blessings today.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Ugh! Not HER.

There is a woman that I have never met. My first thought was to say that there is a woman that I do not know. However, though I have not met this woman, I feel like I know her pretty well. I do not particularly like this woman. This woman is a friend of a friend of ours. We have been hearing about this woman for years, and this woman seems like a miserable, complaining, selfish, inconsiderate, negative, emotionally draining person (who wants to know why God hates her so much). I am not saying these things to be cruel. I am stating my impression. I am being honest. I am being real.

It seems strange that in the twelve-ish years that we have been friends with our friend, we have not met, or even seen a picture of the woman. However, her antics have caused us stress, inconvenience, heartache and hurt time and again.

Saturday morning, this woman happened to rear her head again. She did not do anything that affected us (this time), but she did pop up. As she was on my mind, I put a little bit of thought into her situation. Something made me suggest to our friend that she invite her friend to join us for church on Sunday. Ugh. I had gone this long without meeting the woman and really did not have the desire to meet her now. Why would I suggest that? Our friend said that she would not come and did not bother to ask.

I thought about it for a few minutes, spoke briefly with Richard, and decided that as much as I think that our friend's friend is a complete drain and a miserable person, if I am going to call myself a Christian, then I should act like one and reach out to this woman. Maybe she needs more examples of Christ in her life. I phoned our friend and chatted with her briefly. She gave me her friend's telephone number. Sigh. Deep breath. Exhale. Dial. Ringing. Ringing. Voicemail.

After I listened to the woman's voice and heard her saying, "God bless," at the end of her message (Huh?), I spoke. I told her that our friend had mentioned that she was not feel well and that my husband and I were talking about her and that we wanted to invite her and her husband to join us for church on Sunday. This Sunday would be a day when a group of us was going to church together, including our mutual friend. I kept talking and said that it would be great for her to attend and hear God's word, and maybe she would even hear something that would make her feel better. She could phone me back or phone our mutual friend. If we did not hear from her, then I hoped that she had a good weekend and felt better. End call.

Do I want to hear back from her? Eh. Do I want her to attend church with us? I can only anticipate the drama that that would bring. Do I want to reach out to her because she is hurting and because that is what Christ would do? (Twisting toe in the dirt.) Oookaay, yes.

Sometimes being a Christian is difficult because it is so much easier to be a human. However, at some point in our lives, we all need someone to reach out to us. None of us is any more important to Him than another. We need to remember that He loves each of us as His children, and we should be treating one another as Children of God. Can we do that? Though difficult at times, we certainly can do our best to love and respect one person at a time, one situation at a time.

Friday, April 23, 2010


It seems that I really had nothing to say on Friday. However, I can tell you that I finally got on a scale Thursday night at Paula's, and I weigh 146 pounds. Since I am trying to tone and not necessarily to lose weight, I am not sure that the number matters, but there it is.

Male Body Image?

Someone posted on a local forum about body image and how women seem to be uncomfortable about theirs while men do not seem to care. Is this accurate? As for me...HA! Hubby says that he loves my body, and I tell him that he needs to put on his glasses. Is it that I cannot accept a compliment, or is it that I do not believe him? Do other people see the imperfections in me that I see in myself? Why do I care? Who are they to judge me, anyway? Why do I live at a lake yet do not want to wear a bathing suit? Why do I go out on the boat wearing shorts? Who is going to see me, anyway -- the people staring out of their windows with binoculars? What is wrong with me?!

Well, Ladies, to ease your pain just a little bit, I can safely assure you that men DO have self image issues just like us. Do not let them tell you otherwise. Men are self-conscious about how they look, what their body is like, how healthy is their skin, how their hair looks, etc. Why do you think that men go to the gym? Why do you think that there are so many hair products for men? Why do you think that men have their own clothing stores, their own skin care lines, their own body care products, etc.

Sure, there are men who do not seem to care too much how they look, but then there are women who do not seem to really care either. Maybe they are completely comfortable just being themselves. Maybe we simply do not see their insecurities. Could it be that we see all of the imperfections in ourselves because we are experiencing our insecurities firsthand, because we cannot hide from ourselves?

Fear not, My BlogWorld Friends. You are not alone. You can put your insecurities aside, though. No matter how you look [or think that you look], I believe that every one of you is beautiful!

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Oops, I did not post yesterday. It is Thursday morning, and I did work out on Wednesday. I am feeling it today -- mostly in my back. Yes, RevAbs works your back because in order to build stomach muscles, you need a strong back for support. Now I am gearing up for today's workout. It is difficult to motivate myself, but I force myself to do it because my muscles are not going to get in better shape by themselves.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

You Big Phony!

NOTE: This is something that I actually wrote back on August 8th of 2009, yet after my blog from Sunday, it seems appropriate to repost it. Maybe it will speak to you.

"I wish people would learn to like me for who I'm pretending to be."
-Mike G. Williams,

When I first read this, I chuckled because it was funny. Then I actually laughed because it is funny and true. Everyone is pretending to be something that they are not. Do not deny it. We all are. Even when we sometimes do not realize it, and even though it may not be at every moment, we are phony.

To be clear, I am not talking about intentionally doing something to appear to be something that you are not. I am not talking about gals holding in your belly and pushing back your shoulders to look taller and slimmer or guys sucking in your gut and flexing your muscles to appear to be in better shape than you are. I am talking about the unintended times when we possibly are not even being true to ourselves.

Maybe you are pretending to be happy when you are not. Are you keeping up appearances because you do not want to bring down those around you? Are you hiding behind a smile because you are uncomfortable with attention and just want to avoid the possibility of someone noticing and asking you if you are okay? Are you keeping what bothers you bottled up inside because it is easier than dealing with it? After all, fake it 'til you make it, right?

Maybe you are pretending to have a good relationship with your family when you do not have as good of a relationship as you -- or they -- need. Do you spend quality time with your husband or wife, or do you spend more time with your computer? Do you make time to focus on your children, or are you too focused on your job? When you spend time with your loved ones, is it time that counts, or is it just sitting in the same room watching television?

Challenge yourself today to set aside an hour or two today with no television, no radio, no computer, no distractions, and just enjoy your family. Talk with them. Ask them questions. Listen. Learn about what is on their minds. Appreciate one another. Remember to hug each other. it again tomorrow.

Speaking of family, do you keep in touch with your parents (and siblings)? Do you see them or speak with them often because you love them, or do you only bother to contact them when you need something? Will you be satisfied if your children are the kind of children to you that you have been to your parents? If not, what can you do today to change that?

Maybe you are pretending to be blonde. Well...actually...I have nothing to say about that.

Maybe you pretend to be a good Christian. Yes, I said that. Perhaps we pretend because we do not want people to know what we are really like. Do I pretend? Am I a good Christian? I mean, I know that I am not a perfect Christian because there is no such thing, but am I at least a good one? ...or am I just pretending? Why would I pretend? Am I putting on an act to try to make others think that I am good so that they will like me? What if I am not good? Am I afraid that they will not like the real me, the me that sins and hurts and fears and questions? Am I not satisfied enough with who I really am to just be genuine? What would make me not be satisfied?

What good would pretending do, anyway? The Lord always knows the truth. I mean, do think that I can fool God? Ha! Who do I think I am?

So often in our lives we are pretending. We are trying to look smarter, happier, more attractive, funnier, richer, poorer, whatever it is that suits the situation. We try to impress people by being something that we are not. Why is it so difficult for humans to just be who we are?

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." -Dr. Suess

Monday, April 19, 2010

RevAbs Day 1

Rev it high. Rev it low. I am strong, committed, and ready to go...and now I am too tired to do anything else. Hehe.

As I committed to do, I started my RevAbs exercise program today. After working in the yard for the past two days, I was ready. My muscles were in "use" mode. I started with Total Strength and then did Mercy Abs. Why is it called Mercy Abs? That is because it has you begging for mercy. Gasp, gasp.

I did it, though! I pushed through and completed both workouts. I am physically exhausted, but I am feeling pumped.

Please do not be shy about leaving comments on my blog. I relish the comments, the support, the encouragement, and even the accountability, so feel free to scroll down to catch up on my posts and comment! Thank you, Friends.

Now that I have burned all of those calories, I am going to find some food. Do not laugh at me! Nourishment is important. Now where are those Double Stuff Oreos? Hehe...kidding. Ta!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Convicted! Crap.

Our church had its Sunday service at its new location for the first time today, and we did it without our pastor. Pastor David and his wife had a baby yesterday afternoon, and we had a guest speaker this morning. She was an eighteen year old girl from our congregation. That may seem weird, but this young person is amazing. Jackie spoke of her recent mission trip and what she learned and how she was affected. How she was affected. Ha! A good many people were affected by included. I cannot believe that I was brought to tears by her testimony and by how the Holy Spirit was moving through her. It was a wonderful kickoff service for our church's new location.

One of the things about which Jackie spoke was her fear to be herself. The more that I thought about that, the more that it made me think. I do not think that I have ever shared my testimony in its entirety. Usually, I just blow off an opportunity to share my testimony with the excuse of not being able to remember much of my youth due to a head injury -- which is true. However, I have now been compelled to take a deep look at myself, and I have been convicted. I have not been completely honest. The fact is that I CAN remember my life as I got older. I just do not want to. It scares me. It embarrasses me. It makes me feel stupid. I do not want to think about it. Additionally, I suspect that if a lot of people knew who I really am, they would not want anything to do with me anymore.

With that realization in place, Hubby and I had a long discussion last night. For now, I am going to let me fear continue to cripple me. However, I can with confidence say that I now have less fear. It is a step forward.

After church, Richard, Boy, Phil, Connie, and I went to Daddie and Mommie's house for lunch. Their home is like a retreat, set back in the woods with a pond full of fish at the bottom of the hill and a gazebo to enjoy it. Sitting outside on the screened in back deck enjoying a meal and chatting together is so relaxing.

Back at home, we got back to work on the yard. Richard and Boy worked mainly in the back. Connie and I worked mainly on the front. I am excited about our new lilac plants and ivy, which I am hoping to watch climb the bricks. Again, we got a lot accomplished, and, again, there is still much to be done. The main thing that is left is getting plants into the ground before they die. Time works faster than we do, though.

Today I had work done of my spiritual fitness, my mental fitness, and my physical fitness. All in all, it is safe to say that today was a positive and productive day. Tomorrow will be the first day of my RevAbs exercise program. Life is good.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

What a Day

WOW. We accomplished so much today. There is still much to be done, but we worked so hard today, and we made so much progress that I am thrilled. Boy was such a good little guy all day long with no nap at all. Hopefully he will sleep well tonight and feel good and refreshed tomorrow. Marjorie and Allen and Charlotte spent a good part of the day here helping us, and we are blessed to have had them here. They certainly were a big help with the long list of tasks to be completed.

Except for the sunburn, I am feeling pretty good. We got about fifty canna lillies, twenty-one calla lillies, eighty-ish day lillies, four rose bushes, fourteen pansies (I think) and begonias, two lilacs, a bleeding heart and who knows what else planted. We got about a ton of dirt moved. We weeded, we stacked rocks, we made a new garden, we raked, we swept, we worked.

The best parts of the day were watching Boy work so hard to help. He shoveled dirt from the truck bed into his "Boy-sized-wheelbarrow," and he hauled it, he dumped it, he raked, he planted flowers all by himself! He was such an adorable little man.

We also had a grilled hamburgers and hot dogs to eat at some point. We had ice cream cones at another point. Some of us laid on the cool grass and enjoyed time spent relaxing in the shade. We all enjoyed good conversation. We all enjoyed the company of friends.

Life is good.

We set a lot of unplanted plants in the shade of the house to wait until we get home from church Sunday afternoon. As dark settled in, Connie brought over some ivy and other plants to share. How wonderful is that? It feels so good to be making progress and getting our yard back into shape. Sooo...guess what we will be doing tomorrow. Hehe.

As I type this, it may be around thirty-three hours from the start of my RevAbs exercise program, but there is no doubt that my body worked out today while working on the yard from about 10:30 AM until about 9:00 PM. I feel tired. I feel achy. I feel good. Sweet dreams, Friends.

Friday and Counting

Friday morning I went downstairs and did something goofy to my husband. I do not even remember what it was. He looked at me and said something like, "You are definitely feeling better." Hehe. I was...about 90% better. Thank you to those who checked in on me and offered Richard help with Boy.

Since I felt well enough, Boy and I went grocery shopping to pick up all kinds of freebies and cheapies. By the way, if you have this past Sunday's paper, there is a coupon for $5 off of any two of certain brands of allergy meds. We got Benedryl Anti-Itch Sticks for the summer (bug bites) for FREE since they were only $2.38 each at WalMart. Oh, and Harris Teeter has Perdue chicken for B1G2 FREE until Tuesday. If they run out, you can get a rain check for later.

If you have been following my posts here, then you know that we are just two days from the restart of my exercise program, RevAbs, and I am feeling great antici-. (Only RHPS fans might get that.) Feel free to pray that I stay healthy. The workout for day one does not seem very hard when you look at it, but doing it is another story. I felt the burn in my muscles for several days afterward, and it was fantastic! I am very much looking forward to Monday's workout.

You may be wondering about my challenge to myself from Thursday. After going through the day, I realized that Bonnie's comment was right. It seems that these kind deeds come naturally to me, so it is difficult to consider anything "extra." However, I am reminded by Aesop that "No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted." I did offer a way to make a little extra money to a friend who is out of work, and that one needed some thought.

Today we plan to work on the yard. What a beautiful yard we used to have before we moved to the beach for a few years. Our hearts still break when we look at the condition in which the yard was returned to us when we came back. No worries, though. God is good, and His beauty grows again all around us again and again. Working in the yard will be good for both my physical fitness and my mental fitness. Hmm...maybe even my spiritual fitness.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Continuing the Journey

After going to bed thinking (hoping) that I might feel better this morning, that did not happen. While I actually wound up feeling worse than yesterday, it has not been as bad as Tuesday, so I suppose that part is positive.

RevAbs, the exercise program that I have chosen, gives the seventh day as rest. Since Sunday is our day of rest, anyway, I decided that since we are already nearing the weekend, the best thing for me is to let myself fully recover from whatever this is, wait until Monday, start fresh, and then work my abs off! (Yes, that other part, too, but I said, "Abs."

Meanwhile, there is no reason not to continue my fitness journey in other areas over the next few days, right? For now through tomorrow, Friday, I am giving myself a little challenge to do an extra something kind for seven people. Sharing goodness with others is fantastic for my mental attitude because I enjoy seeing others happy and blessed.

Your comments are welcome. Feel free to hold me accountable!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Day After

This morning was slow starting for me because I still felt miserable. However, as the day progressed, I was able to get vertical for longer periods. From upstairs, I heard Boy say, "Can I have a huggy?" Aw! My baby is speaking in full sentences, and it makes me smile. I made my way downstairs to the couch around mid-morning. I have been able to get up a few times and even cook and eat lunch. Yay! Hopefully by tomorrow I will be back to feeling like me. I have no idea what this yucky sickness is/was, but I am ever-so-grateful that it only lasted less than two days.

You may be wondering about my exercise program. As of today, I am even more confident that it will be effective. Specifically, my back and my triceps were hurting this morning. They were not hurting in a bad way; they were hurting in a way that told me that I was definitely using them during yesterday's workout. Woohoo!

Since I barely got started, when I am feeling better, I am going to start over. After all, the workouts will be less effective if I do not do them daily and keep my body exercising. Being sick can be so miserable, and yesterday was tough. I do not know how I would have gotten through it without my husband. It would have been okay, though, because God would not give me more than I could handle, right?

Bull dinky!

People say that so often, and I see it written in fancy letters on cute cards or some such places. It has become such a common saying, but why? Who said it? God did not. It is not in the Bible. The fact of the matter is that, as frightening as it can be, He will certainly allow you to have more than you can handle.

Huh? What? Why would I say such a thing? Frankly, I do not believe that the Lord wants us to handle everything on our own. He wants us to turn to him. We are His children, and He wants to guide us and comfort us in the same way that we want to do those things for our own children.

Think about it. If your child was so independent that they never turned to you, even when they needed to, would that not hurt you immensely? Would you cry to see your child suffer because they were so stubborn? In that same way, imagine how we hurt the Lord's feelings every time that we neglect the fact that He CAN help us.

We ask God for the not-so-important things all of the time. "Lord, please help me be on time for the movie even though it starts in three minutes, and I have not even left yet. Please let it be a sunny day for my day off even though there is a forecast of rain showers. Oh, and while you are at it, Lord, I did just buy a lottery ticket...." It seems so easy to take for granted that He will hear us and [hopefully] give us what we want. If we do not get what we want, though, then it is not such a big deal since they are not important things, anyway.

What about when it is not so trivial, though? What about those times when we want to just crawl into a hole and wish the world away? What about those situations where it seems that there is no possible "fix" or solution? We feel so lost, so afraid, so alone...but are we?

Remember that we can rely on God for everything. He loves us. He wants to show us His love, His mercy, His grace. He always answers our prayers. Are we praying to Him when we need Him the most, though? We may not get the exact answer that we want in that moment, but God knows exactly what we need.

Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:3-6

Now if I can just remember that and put it into practice every day, I will be more spiritually fit already!

Day 1 -- Sort Of

My husband and I decided to work together as a team to get in better shape. We have friends who use Beach Body products and rave about them, so we took the steps to get on board with Beach Body and are supporting one another. Since my goal is not necessarily to lose weight but to get in better shape, I have chosen RevAbs for my exercise program.

RevAbs arrived Monday, so Tuesday morning, I got started. I was pretty worn out but just chalked it up to not getting much sleep the night before (maybe four hours?). The first thing that I did was take my measurements. So long to the days of being young and fit and blessed with a 36-25-36 physique. Now I am getting older, have had a child, do not eat as healthy as I could and do not exercise like I used to at all. goes...exhale.

Chest: 35"
Left Arm: 11.5"
Right Arm: 11"
Waist: 29"
Belly: 32.5"
Hips: 38"
Left Thigh: 22.5"
Right Thigh: 22"

Now, before anyone starts giving me a hard time about not being fat, I am not. I know that I am not. If you will remember, from the beginning, I said that my goal is not necessarily to lose weight but to get into better shape. My journey is still going to be a big challenge, though, because I am so out of shape. With the obstacle of exercise induced asthma, I know that the workouts will be challenging, but I am determined to succeed.

The next step was to measure my fitness level, and while I did fine with some of the exercises, I really did not do great at the others:

1. Squat Hold (goal of 1 min.) = 1:03 - Yay!
2. Push-Up (goal of 10 in 30 sec.) = 13 in 0:20 - Too many, too fast? Did not make 30 sec.
3. Jumping Jacks (goal of 30 in 30 sec.) = 35
4. Plank (goal of 1 min.) = 0:41 (Hard!)
5. Cobra (goal of 1 min.) = 1:18
6. Crunch (goal of 30 in 30 sec.) = 33
7. Leg Drop (goal of 20 in 1 min.) = 14 - These hurt my back so much.
8. Side Plank on Right (goal of 30 sec.) = 0:20
8. Side Plank on Left (goal of 30 sec.) = 0:14 - Had a weird cramp and could not fight it. Was it from a previous exercise? Either way, I bombed on this one!

As you can see, physical fitness is not my strongest suit. I am supposed to do these same things to measure my physical fitness again on day 45 and on day 90 of my RevAbs exercise program to see how my fitness level progresses.

Oh, I almost forgot. I had to measure my body fat, too. How embarrassing. The tool measured 22 mm, and I looked at the chart which told me that at my age, that means that I have about 31.5% body fat. WHAT?! Can that be right? Maybe I read it wrong. I will ask Richard to help me later. LOL.

Once I had measured myself and determined my fitness level, it was time to get started on my first workout. For Day 1, my workout was Total Strength because you cannot build your muscles without building your strength.

Still tired, and not feeling too hot, I popped in the DVD, pushed play, and got started. This workout was apparently in three rounds. I got through the first round weakly. The more I was getting up and down, the more I felt yucky. Finally, I realized that I was not feeling so poorly purely from lack of sleep. I was sick.

What started as fatigue and a bit of vertigo turned into me being in bed almost the entire day and night with more and more symptoms popping up as the hours went by. I managed to sleep for a few hours, too. For those who know me, you know that I almost never sleep in the day time, so the fact that I napped is really saying something about how badly I felt. Woe.

Later in the evening, I dragged myself downstairs and curled up on the couch with my guys to watch the season premiere of Glee. How could I miss it? LOL. We had baked chicken and mashed potatoes and carrots for supper. I did not eat the carrots. I should have.

Straight back to bed. Sleep. Would I still be sick tomorrow, or would I be able to resume my barely begun fitness journey?

A Weary Dawnmarie

PS Yes, I typed this on Wednesday because yesterday I was too sick to even look at the computer let alone think about starting my journal.