Thursday, February 28, 2013

Ready for Next Right Step

Early post today...Posting at lunch...Good news though...I do not have time to ramble aimlessly...You can thank me later! tomorrow is Weigh In #28 and the end of the 3rd week of the Cleanse.  The fourth and final week of the cleanse will be the beginning of integrating fats and carbs back in to my diet...not too many of course.  But, with the addition of carbs, I can begin to again, increase the intensity of my workouts.  I really want to hit it hard the next few months (within reason) and push hard for this goal. 

My next Mini-Goal is one week from tomorrow...Enchanted Rock!  I hope they are ready for the newly cleansed Fluffy Girl!!!  I am planning on kicking some big pink granite butt!!!  Plus, I am really looking forward to getting away for the weekend.  I have next Friday off so that we can enjoy the drive and not have to rush to get to the park on Saturday!  It will be fun! 

SO...I have a challenge for all of you...and I do mean ALL of you!!!  I desperately need more ideas for a physical challenge MINI-GOAL for April.  I would like to do something outdoors...while the weather is still manageable here in Houston area.  I don't mind going to Austin...or surrounding areas for the challenge.  If you have an idea...please send it to me...You can comment here or email me at
 Tonight I am back to walking...I am still INSPIRED...So Grateful...So Amazingly Blessed and Ready for the Next Right Step! 

MAWA Inspired!!! God Inspired!  LOVE Inspired!!!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Little Notes of Encouragement

Hello to all.  I hope today has been good and that you are having a lovely evening. 

I am inching closer and closer to the completion of this cleanse and things continue to be going well.  I do have my food challenges but I have to say that so far this experience has been worth the challenge. 

I have been asked several times in the last few days.."What benefits am I seeing from the cleanse?".  I can honestly say that the most obvious is that I feel so much more "clear headed"...I think I have had a brain cleanse!!!  I am generally more energetic and my glucose levels have been really good (especially in the last few days).  I am glad I am doing it and I will do it again.  Probably will give it another whirl in 6 or 7 months. 

Tonight I took off from working out and instead got my social needs met!  I had dinner with a new friend (Camille)...and an old friend (Donna).  It was a really energizing night for me.

  I love people...I love meeting new people and I often find myself missing that in my life.  I think that when I do meet someone that I connect with really reminds me that one way I connect with God is through people.  Through people's gifts, heart and their unique spirit.  I find that connection so uplifting and so rare that I jump at the chance when it presents itself.  It is just another source of inspiration for me.  I probably kind of make a bit of a fool of myself but I have reached a place in my life where it feels really important to tell the truth!  This requires a certain vulnerability that I am not always comfortable with...but here I am...writing about it! 

So tonight was another moment of uplifting inspiration with a little uncomfortable vulnerability all leading to the unique joy of a new friendship and the unique joy of a long time friendship...all in one booth!!!  It gives me another reason to keep working to be a better me.  So heart is full! 

I think that I get little notes of encouragement from God everyday..they come in different forms...but all are impactful.  My job is to keep my eyes, ears, heart and mind open and waiting!


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Fluffy Girl and Sprouted Bread

Happy Tuesday!  I hope all is well in your world.  Things are fine here...just pushing through week 3 of "the cleanse"...I am missing carbs though. 

I think I will find it easier to eat like have been eating these last couple of weeks in the long term, if I can throw in a healthy carb or two.  I worked out last night a little more than I have been...and well, it kicked my hind end!  I was really tired and profoundly hungry after my workout last night. 

Tonight, I will be walking again...not sure what kind of pace I will be on given my shins..but they feel much better so I am hoping that a walk will be just fine. 

I can't believe tomorrow will be the middle of week 3!!  Next week I get to add in healthy fats (avocado, almond butter....YUM) and a few carbs (oatmeal, brown rice and "sprouted" bread)...I know even know what the heck sprouted bread is!!!  I had to look it up!!!  I had a vision of a loaf of bread with a shrub growing out of it!!!  But here it is...looks like bread to me!! 

I bet I love it...just because it is bread!!!  Plus, I get to have almond butter...Love it!  Can you tell I am hungry!!!  At least I am not obsessing over pizza or a burger...Wow...have things changed.  I am excited about sprouted bread and almond butter...Holy Toledo!!!

So my co-worker Amanda sent me the below recipe...I think it sounds as soon as I am free to eat carbs again...I will be trying this!  Thought I would share!

Lauren Conrad-No bake-Healthy Cookie Dough bites

So last night I went to Y...and it was packed!!!  Lots of people!!  I still crack myself up...I get to the gym and I become completely grouchy because I have to park so far away from the main entrance...I mean I get cranky!!!  I will workout...but I WILL NOT park more than 25 feet from the entrance of the gym...LOL!!!! What a goof I am!!

Next thing you know...I will be this person (the one in the chair)

Well...I am leaving work...heading home and then taking my walk in the chilly night air!!! 
I am ready for a great rest of the week!!  Bring on Hump Day!!! 
Have a good night!! Jaime

Monday, February 25, 2013

It Takes a Village to Heal a Fluffy Girl

It is Monday...Yep...and I have had a difficult time waking up today!  Sleepy Monday!  I am not too sure why...I guess I did not get enough ZZZZ's last night.  So....I am hoping to workout after work and get to bed early. 

After writing about Healing last night...I realized that I have a little more to say on the The Healing Continues. 

As part of the sermon yesterday, our minister, Godfrey Hubert, discussed a story from the Bible...a story that I am familiar with..the story of 4 friends of a paralyzed man who carry him on a stretcher to the home of Peter where Jesus is teaching in Capernaum.  When they arrive, the crowds are so thick that they cannot reach the only entrance to the home and thus cannot ask Jesus to heal their friend.  However they are determined...So they carry the man to the roof of the home (I am guessing a roof made of sod) and they begin to dig a hole in the roof so that they can lower the man before Jesus and asked that he may be healed.  When Jesus sees the Faith of the 4 friends...he heals the man.  (Mark 2: 1-12)

Now that is an abbreviated version of the story...but after Godfrey finished reading the story, he asked the following question..."Who are your stretcher bearers...and whose stretcher do you carry?"

The question really struck me!  Of course, I have almost literally had to have stretcher bearers in my life!!  As I have said in the past couple of posts...given my historically lousy health...I have needed lots of help and have received that help many times in recent years.  I can tell you that without that help, I would not being taking on this challenge.  My "stretcher bearers" have carried this Fluffy Girl long distances and God Bless them...I am sure they feel like they have hoisted me up on many a roof!!! 

However, I began to specifically think of this Journey and how many "stretcher bearers" I have now...I began to really think about the number of people who have written a comment, sent a text or an email, given me a hug, or have shown any number of gestures of love and generosity...I realized that I have an entire team of "stretcher bearers" who daily carry me to my healing! 

This made me realize that I am surrounded by people who are actively supporting my healing...and because this Journey has become a truly spiritual Journey for me as well...I realized that I am being carried daily to Christ by my family, friends, co-workers and strangers alike.  Really quite amazing and special.

You know the saying...It takes a village to raise a child...Well, I have amended that slightly...

It takes a village to heal a Fluffy Girl...

Thank you for being my stretcher bearers and I will gladly return the favor...I hope I can one day! 

Friends , Family Inspirational Picture and Motivational Quote

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Taking the Time to Heal

Happy Sunday Evening!  I hope you have a wonderful day full of love, happiness, family and worship. 

Today has been a good Sunday...started with Church...then we headed out to Conroe to see our friends, Pat, Stefanie and Kendall...three generations of lovely ladies!!!  We had lunch and they gave me a beautiful birthday gift and we had some good hang-out time! 

It was Tone Tone's first social outing since getting out of the hospital...She was ready to vacate the premises and interact with somebody other than me or the fuzzy white beast that lives with us!  It was a nice day. 

I am managing to remain true to the "cleanse"..though today was a bit of a struggle from a hunger standpoint.  Really, I am baffled and not sure why..but I managed to stay on track and not go off program. 

I am heading into week 3 of the cleanse and I am feeling good!  I have made it this far and am thinking that the next 2 weeks will be no step for a stepper!!!

I find myself thinking about the sermon in church this morning.  It was about Jesus-The Healer!  It made me think about the idea of healing and how true healing typically takes least in my experience.  As most of you know, my Mom was recently released from the hospital.  I took her to a follow-up appointment last Wednesday and the Dr. said that for every day she was in the hospital...she will need 4 days to if my impeccable math skills are correct, that is 12 days of recuperative time needed for a 3 day hospital stay!  That speaks volumes to the idea that healing takes time. 

When I speak of healing, I think of all kinds of healing...healing of the mind, body and spirit.  As I work on this new physical shape...I am acutely aware of the "shape" of my emotional health and my spiritual health...and they are changing...AND I have a lot of healing to do...the past several years have been challenging in so many ways and my hope when I started this Journey was that I would lose a ton of weight and my physical body would begin to heal.  I really did not realize that I would find myself six months down the road and experiencing healing on so many levels! 

Healing takes time and I plan on taking the time needed to Heal!  Despite the challenges...physically, emotionally and spiritually, I am committed to feels so much better than I ever expected!  It is work...and it is worth it! 

So...I am heading into Week #28...Ready and open to whatever it may bring.  I have some things I am looking forward to this week and I continue to know that I am Blessed!!!


Saturday, February 23, 2013

Keep the Change

Hello Friends!!!  I hope all is well in your world today!  It was a beautiful day here in the Houston area today...not too hot, not too cold, partly cloudy but mostly sunny...A great day to be outside. 

Donna and I planned to head to the Arboretum at Memorial Park today for a walk..they have some really nice trails, etc...However, we got stuck in absolutely horrible changed plans and headed to a nice park a little closer to home. 

We walked about 1.5 miles when I had to admit that I have some shin splint action happening...I have been walking a lot trying to get ready for my hike early next month.  However, I may have to pick a new exercise for the next few days.  The shin pain is not severe...just very noticeable.  So...I will make the necessary adjustments so that I can continue to workout effectively. 

So once I had realized that I was going to have to stop....Donna forged on and did another mile.  I did do some other exercises waiting for her though.  At least the fluffy girl is still moving! 

After our walk...We headed back to Donna's and Emily and I played a little "front yard" volleyball!  She was a little less than enthusiastic at first...(her Mom wanted her to get out a bit and away from the T.V.), but she warmed up and we had some fun!  I enjoy my time with her...and am glad she still thinks her goofy Aunt Jaime is still cool!  At least "cool" for an adult! 

So the rest of the day has been pretty low-key! I have been tired... Here though, is an ugly fact about me...that has nothing to do with being Fluffy, generally speaking...I HATE to clean house...HATE IT!  However, I NEED to clean...I am truly hoping that as this Journey continues...I will be able to make corrections in some of the things that I just do not like to do...but realistically CAN do!

  But I was thinking...less than one year ago, I was so ill that I really could not take care of the everyday tasks that most people do (if even they do not like to).  I was completely debilitated by pain, infections, name it!  I could not work, I could not cook (even badly), I could not even drive myself to the Dr.  I had to ask friends and family for help just to take care of myself.  I was not able to be there for my Mom and my friends...I could barely walk from the car to the front door!  I could not play volleyball with Emily or plan trips to hike a big hunk of granite...Life Has Changed! 

So today...I will deal with being tired after doing a little cleaning, walking 1.5 miles, playing volleyball, cleaning out my car, cooking, walking the dog...etc...I will Keep the Change!!!

Here are the lyrics from a song by Rascal Flats...the video follows.  I love it!  Goodnight!

I came up, out of the water.
Raised my hands, up to the father
Gave it all to him that dayFelt a new wind kiss my face
Walked away, eyes wide open
Could finally see where I was going
It didn't matter where I'd been, I'm not the same man I was then

I got off track, I made mistakes
Back slid my way into that place, where souls get lost, lines get crossed and the pain won't go away
I hit my knees, now here I stand
There I was, now here I am..Here I am.

I got a lot of "hey I'm sorry"s, the things I've done, Man that was not me
I wish that I could take it all back, I just wanna tell 'em that.. tell 'em that
I've changed for the better.

More smiles, less bitter..I'm even starting to forgive myself
I hit my knees, now here I stand

There I was, now here I am, here I am, here I am
I'm changed. Yes I am.. I've changed for the better
Thank God, I changed.

Rascal Flats-Changed

Friday, February 22, 2013

So Long 240's-Weigh #27

HAPPY FRIDAY!!!!  Yes, it is that time again...It is Weigh In time...Weigh IN #27 sees another 2.0 lbs dropped!  But most importantly it is time to bid farewell to the 240's...yep, I dropped below 240 today and am now weighing in a 238lbs...a little less Fluff goes a long way!!!!

It is nice to be below 240...I am pretty sure I have not weighed less than 240 in quite a few years.  Now...only 8 more lbs before I can say so long to the 230's...that will be my next goal.  I will concentrate on losing the next 8lbs...feels a little more manageable and I know that I can achieve that. 
It does feel a bit funny being excited to weigh 238lbs...I still outweigh a NFL linebacker...however, in the world of a Fluffy is a big change!  It has been hard work...but it has been rewarding work.  I am going to focus on the next month.  The day after the cleanse is over, I will be, along with my friends and my Mom...heading to Enchanted Rock.  I will be climbing the 425 foot dome of pink granite and I am really looking forward to it.  Moving ahead...climbing a big rock...enjoying my friends and family and having a little mini-vacation to boot. 

I want to push as hard as I can (in a healthy way) to reach my goal of 120lbs...I am aware that I am behind however, know that I cannot be discouraged.  I must be optimistic (not always easy for me) and I have to maintain my Faith...even on days when it feels like I have too much to handle.  I really like this quote below from one of the funniest women to ever live! 

"One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn' t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself."
Lucille Ball

 I do have a long way to go...and at times it seems like an impossible task...but if I take a deep breath, focus on my goal and take a few minutes to think about where I have come from...I am reminded that this Journey has been all about overcoming.  Overcoming illness, overcoming self-doubt, overcoming addiction, overcoming my history and overcoming apathy and so far, overcoming 43 pounds. 

I also know another thing about this Journey that I could say everyday for the rest of my life and it would not begin to highlight the importance...I have been surrounded by Love and Support...absolutely amazing love and support.  I am probably going to need that much more over the next 6 months. 
I know that I probably sound like a broken record at times...and as I have admitted before, it does get challenging trying to write something different and fresh everyday...But I have decided that it is just fine to repeat my gratitude everyday...It is good practice!  So as the reader I hope you do not get bored with it or that my words don't sound disingenuous...they are truly heartfelt! 

So again, to all of my family, thank you for your continued support!  To my old friends..thanks for all of your patience, your willingness to go through this change with me and for just hanging around for so long!!!  To my new friends, thank you for adding a new spark to my life, for providing some wonderful wisdom and a great dose of happy! 

So again...I am going to continue to focus on taking this challenge head on, one-day-at a time, full of God's grace and surrounded by unconquerable love!


God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Lunch Lesson

Happy Thursday...I hope today has been a happy, healthy day for all. 

Did my normal thing: work, workout, know the same ol' same ol'. 

For some reason, I am feeling overwhelmed though.  Really tired tonight!  As I sit here, trying to put my "day" into words...if feels like more of a challenge than normal.  Tonight, I struggled with my walk...I did manage to complete 1.5 miles and I felt like I was wearing concrete shoes...or for those that remember the T.V. show "The Munsters", I feel like I am wearing Herman's big platform shoes....just clunky and slow! 

I am managing to stay on track with the cleanse...I am not eating outside the scope of the "rules" of the program.  We had an office luncheon today and I felt like I needed to go despite the fact that I knew eating at a Mexican restaurant would be quite challenging. know...I just asked for what I needed.  I gave the waiter very specific instructions about how I wanted my chicken oil or butter...dry..just dry and a salad with no "good stuff" cheese, egg, salsa, sour cream, avocado, etc... and I got what I asked for!  Not bad. 

There is a lesson in that for me.  I asked for what I needed, I communicated it clearly and my needs were met.  Now I am not so naive that I think it is always that simple..but there is such truth in that for me.  Trust is way easier to ask a waiter to make sure my food is cooked the way I like it...than it is to ask for what I need in more personal matters. But...the "Lunch Lesson" reminded me that I know how to communicate what it is I need.  It just takes a little gumption...a little courage and a lot of Faith...It is not always easy and I have to be clear that I am asking for what I need and not just what I want. 

As I have quoted before...the immortal words of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

You can't always get what you want...
You can't always get what you want...
But if you try sometimes, you just might find
You get what you need!

Tonight, I need rest and from you, I need prayers, please.  Prayers for strength, prayers for courage and prayers for continued Faith that I am on the right path, taking the next right step and have all that I need to complete this Journey! 

Also, please keep my Mom in your prayers as she continues to have health struggles. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Medical Mania

Good Evening to everyone!  I hope you have all have had a great Wednesday. 
Today has been all day medical mania!!  Poor Tone Tone had 2 Dr. Appts...both lengthy and tiring for her!  She is just not feeling her best.  More Dr. appts to come too.  Bless her heart...she hates all of this medical stuff!

I am grateful that I was able to be home so that I could go with her.  Another blessing... that I have the flexibility to be able to be there for my Mom.

It was a crazy, busy day.  However, Donna and I did get in a 2.8 mile walk and in record time for the Fluffy Girl...40 minutes!  Woo Hoo!  Walking with my tall friend helped boost my time!!

Just 2 more days until another weigh in!!  I am hoping for another big loss!  The Cleanse is still going forward and I am FORGING ON!

Before I go, I want to say that despite the current life difficulties, I know that God is right here with me, with Mom and leading the way on this amazing Journey!

I must get some rest!  Good night my guys give me strength! 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Practice, Practice, Practice

Happy Tuesday!  Here we are in Week #27 of this battle of the bulge and Life is moving right along. 

My Mom is still not feeling we will be seeing all of her doctors tomorrow to hopefully find some solution!  Please keep her in your prayers.

So my day is a little got really busy...really quickly...No surprise!  I have got car issues...AND  I forgot part of my lunch at home...My favorite part...The chicken... NO Dead Bird!  Oh well...I will is another day that I get to practice patience, practice perspective and practice what I have been yammering about off and on over the past 6 months...Faith! 

So much about what I am doing is about practice...practice eating differently, practice healthy living, practice my faith, practice patience, practice love, practice writing, practice truth and honesty, practice changing, practice courage, practice belief in self, practice, practice, practice.  I am not of the belief that practice makes perfect...but I do believe that practice makes me stronger, better prepared and allows me confidence in whatever it is that I am trying to accomplish.

I love the following quote by Martha Graham, one of the most prolific dancers/choreographers in American dance history...but this quote is about everyday life for me...

“I believe that we learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. In each, it is the performance of a dedicated precise set of acts, physical or intellectual, from which comes shape of achievement, a sense of one's being, a satisfaction of spirit. One becomes, in some area, an athlete of God. Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.”
Martha Graham

I love the idea of being an "Athlete of God"!  I want to continue to strive for that...I want to be an Athlete of God.  So I will keep practicing...practicing all of the things that I can in order to accomplish my goal.  Though I do not think that practice leads to perfection..I do believe it can lead to whatever form that takes! 

Have a blessed day!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Simple Realization, Complex Situation

Stormy least it has been in these parts....I hope you all have had a great day.  Today was pretty decent for a Monday.  I went into the office and had a moderately busy day.  No major stress or drama...which is nice! 

I am still forging on with the cleanse...It really has not been bad.  I think the most difficult part for me is drinking just water...and drinking enough on a daily basis.  Just not a water drinker...but, I have gotten better!  Maybe by the end of this I will be a happy, drinker of water!!!

I have gotten a little creative with my veggies...I even cooked Kale that I liked.  A little carmelized onion, garlic and olive oil.  Cooked the Kale until is wilted and then finish with Balsamic Vinegar...not bad. 

I have also made yellow squash, sauteed with onion, fresh garlic, mushrooms and organic canned tomatoes (unsalted). I add a little Italian seasoning, olive oil and a splash of Ms. Dash...also quite yummy. 

My plan is to generally maintain this eating plan post cleanse...only adding back in some carbs and healthy fats!  We shall see.  I feel like I need to really push these last 6 months.  Plus...I do think I feel better eating this way.  Less processed food, no sugar, no caffeine...

I told Donna tonight that I actually think I feel more clear headed.  Don't hold me to that...but I think that has been the biggest difference I have seen so far. 

So for several blog posts now I have discussed being Still and Trusting God's plan and the difficulty I have at times just stopping...slowing my to speak!  I am often uncomfortable when I am not busy.  So when the opportunity arises and I am forced to "slow my roll", that is when I become uncomfortable in my own skin.  One of my closest friends said it this way (paraphrased)...when she slows down and is not busy, it forces her to think and FEEL(my interpretation).  That can be painful. 

I am realizing that by doing this cleanse...I force myself to slow down in a way.  Because of the restrictions of the program...I am not eating out...I am not eating for enterainment and I am forced to deal with my thoughts and feelings...just like any addiction.  Simple realization...Complex situation. 

But God has a plan...despite my weaknesses...God has a plan.  That plan may at times look like a limitation and not an certainly at times feels like a limitation...a bind!  However, in having a conversation with a friend last night, the following passage was pointed out to me...she suggested that I read it and I immediately knew I wanted to share it with all of you:

From Jesus Calling by Sarah Young (Feb. 16):

Thank Me for the conditions that are requiring you to be STILL.  Do not spoil these quiet hours by wishing them away, waiting impatiently to be active again. Some of the greatest works of My kingdom have been done from sick beds and prison cells.  Instead of resenting the limitations of a weakened body, search for My way in the midst of these very circumstances.  Limitations can be liberating when your strongest desire is living close to Me. 
Quietness and trust enhance your awareness of My presence with you.  Do not despise these simple ways of serving Me.  Although you feel cut off from the activity of the world, your quiet trust makes a pwerful statement in spiritual realms.  My Strength and Power show themselves most effective in weakness. 

Zechariah 2:13, Isaiah 30:15, 2 Corinthians 12:9


Sunday, February 17, 2013

Whooah...We are Halfway There...Livin On a Prayer

Hello to all!  Happy Sunday.  We are still in a state of recuperation around here.  Tone Tone was not up for church so we had living room church.  By that I mean, we watched FUMC Houston on TV and stayed in our jammies.  She is taking it easy...trying to let her blood pressure stabilize and getting lots of rest.  These hospital stays typically take it out of her...So rest is has been the order of the day. 

I managed to rest right along with her...I had a rough night..physically.  Just did not sleep well and was REALLY nauseated most of the night.  So I did not exactly jump in to action today.  As crazy as this may sound...I could hardly bring myself to eat anything for a better part of the day.  I finally had my shake at about 2:00 PM.  Not exactly on program..but it was the best I could manage today. 

I decided to take another walk!  Today was so nice. It was a great temperature outside...a little windy...but doable.  Lots of people were out today...I like that! 

Before I went on my walk (2.2 miles today), I listened to the sermon on T.V. that we recorded for Living Room church!  It was about building our lives on a solid foundation...the foundation of God's word.  As I listened, I thought about these words in relation to my Journey.  Specifically, regarding changing the way I eat, my habits around food, my emotional eating, etc...I thought about how I am "building" or "re-building" my life from the ground up...when it comes to food.  I keep saying that this Journey is about so much more than just losing weight...and as I listened today I am aware of the new growth..the new foundation that I am having to learn about as I make this trip. 

My cousin Barbara wrote the following comment to me...I wanted to share it with everyone because it is a wonderful acknowledgment of my experience so far.  Not really anything of my doing...but of the gift of God's Guidance and Grace on this Journey.  I told you guys I have a wonderfully supportive and strong family...I am so blessed!  I am proud of my family.

I know this Journey Started out as a goal to lose weight and better health, but as I read each day, it's clear that it is also a spiritual walk, leaning on God for strength to meet the goal each and every day. I truly think it's caused you to know yourself better. Your a strong person. I am very proud of you. Barb.
So...this is the 6 month anniversary of the start of this Journey...The Halfway Point...and the only thing in my head right now is Bon Jovi...

Whooah, we're half way there
Livin on a prayer
Take my hand and we'll make it - I swear
Livin on a prayer

If you have told me that someday I would say out print...that a Bon Jovi song lyric would be the perfect soundtrack for my life...I would have laughed my butt off...Instead...It IS the perfect soundtrack for this moment in my Life and I AM laughing my butt off...hopefully.
But really..I don't think there are better words...We ARE halfway there and I AM Living on a Prayer...ok, I am living on multiple prayers...but prayers nonetheless. 
I must admit that the time has flown by...I am thrilled that I have made it this far and I am horrified that I only have 6 months left to meet my goal.  However, I will keep praying, keep believing that this Journey is Divinely driven and I will keep looking for inspiration, keep hanging on to the inspiration that got me started and trust that God has got my back! 
I am AMAZED at this experience so far...Amazed at the support I have received, the people I have met, the love I have been shown, the gifts I have received and challenges I have overcome.  All in 6 MONTHS!  Wow...As always I thank all of you for your contributions, the time you have taken to read the daily mutterings of a Fluffy Girl, the words you have shared with me and the wisdom you have shared. 
To all of my family...thank you for taking this to heart and believing in me.
To my friends...old and new...God Bless your patience and your willingness to join in on this Journey.   
To Kerri Walsh Jennings...thank you for tolerating my weekly tweets, for taking an interest and making me feel quite special because I have 3 time Olympic Gold Medalist in my corner!  Sweet!
I have had so many "God Moments" in the last 6 months...I could not even begin to count them all. 
BRING on the next 6 months...There is more de-fluffing to be done!!! 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

I Wait Quietly

Hello to all. I hope you have all had a good Saturday.  It has  been a quiet day around here. 
I think the last few days took it out of me a bit.  I am so grateful that I have had the energy to do all that needed to be done...and today I am tired. 

Mom is recuperating and I guess in a way, I am too! 

I did manage to get in a decent walk tonight...though it was rather chilly outside.  I enjoyed the crisp air....head clearing!

So today...another lesson in being Still....not really easy, but necessary.  It always feels like a struggle to just BE! I am not always comfortable in my own skin...that is kind of hard to admit.  Thus, the concept of being Still...being OK with stopping all of the activity and just allowing myself to stop.  I think I discuss this as much as I discuss losing weight.  I really believe that they go hand in hand.  I believe that as I continue on this Journey...I will have to learn how to be comfortable in my own skin and the stressors that impact my eating behaviors will subside.  That will take some serious Faith and some practice on my part.  I will keep practicing...being Still and trusting my gut.  Trusting God's plan. Listening and Learning. I wait Quietly!

The cleanse continues-Day 8...I have been hungry today...but I am managing.  20 days to go!!!  I plan on kickin butt!   Still Inspired and Still Motivated! MAWA!

Have a blessed Sunday!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Weigh IN #26-Prayerfully Prioritizing

Happy Friday and Happy Weigh In #26.  TGIF!  Tone Tone got to come home.  She is tired and needs to rest in her own bed...but is doing much better.  Thank you all for your prayers, calls and well wishes.  She is beyond glad to be home and we are both grateful for the support.

So Weigh In #26 was a big success!  I lost 4lbs this week so it looks like the "cleanse" is paying off.  I made it through week has had its challenges but generally was doable.  Three more weeks to go...weeks 2 and 3 are generally the same just with different supplements while week #4 will see the introduction of healthy carbs and healthy fats back into my diet.  I am glad I am doing is an interesting experience and I am curious to see how my food decisions change after one month on this plan. 

So this week has been challenging.  I am glad that Mom is home and am I looking forward to getting back on my workout schedule. I have taken the last couple of days off...just needed to focus on other things.  I am truly learning that I cannot do everything.  I have to prayerfully prioritize and trust that the decisions I make are the best for that day and then just move on!  Prayerfully Prioritize...that is not always how I approach my priorities...but I am learning that it helps me feel more comfortable with my decisions.

I have now lost feels good to be in the 40+lbs lost category!  Though I am still off pace...I feel so much closer this week.  I guess it is just starting to really feel like this is happening...I am losing this Fluff!!!  So Bring on Week #27! 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend...filled with lots of fun, healthy living and lots and lots of LOVE!!! 

Thank you again for supporting me and for taking time out of your lives to read my words...Any feedback, comments, observations are always welcome. 

Also, as I approach the 6 month mark in this Journey...It would be really great if you could share this blog with your friends, family...anywhere.  I would really like to raise awareness and gather more of a following in hopes that I have the opportunity to host a successful Charity Volleyball Game on August 17, 2013.  As the event draws closer, I will share more details.  If any of you have any suggestions, comments, etc...regarding the charity event...I am OPEN for suggestions! 

Reminder:  I can be contacted directly at

Again, much love to all of you! 


Thursday, February 14, 2013

I Turn To Love

Happy Valentine's Day!  Happy Love Day!
So you can imagine...given my love of LOVE, I have a particular fondness for this day that celebrates all things  L-O-V-E!

Unfortunately, my Mom is still in the hospital.  Not a fun day to spend Valentines Day for her...but she did get a cute teddy bear!  I tried to make it a bit festive for her!

She is improving...but her stay in the hospital will continue at least for another day.  Please continue saying prayers.  We need them! 

So as I started to think about my post tonight...I must admit the first thing I thought about was CHOCOLATE! YEP...not Love...but CHOCOLATE!  However...once the reality of my current situation...(my quest to shrink my fluffy frame) hit me as I ate my apple, I turned to LOVE.

I turn to love...I like the sound of that phrase.  I TURN TO LOVE.
I think most people associate Valentine's Day with romantic love-which makes perfect sense. Me too! However...since Matthew McConaughy mistakenly chose another to be his wife...I look at this day slightly differently.

Seriously has seen me through many a tough day, love has been a reason to smile from ear to ear, love sounds like my favorite song, love makes me laugh, love fills my heart completely.  For me, love takes on many forms.  It is a true "one size fits all" kind of thing!  A fluffy girl's dream. 

If I did not know the above before...I certainly do now.  This  JOURNEY has been a lesson in love for me and again it has shown itself in many many different forms.  I am completely blessed to have grown up in a family that was not afraid to love...openly...big huggers! Most importantly, I was taught the importance living in God's Love.

That foundation has helped me to learn that no matter what I do, no matter what obstacles I face, or how much self doubt creeps in, through hurt feelings, important decisions, waning faith, big dreams....that if I Turn To Love...I can do anything!

We Love, because He first loved us.
I John 4:19

Happy LOVE DAY! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Full Contact Fluffy Girl

Hello to all definitely is a hump day!  Wednesday may be the new Monday. 
So this morning...I leave for work and am five minutes from home when my car overheats! So Mom called the tow truck for me...I called the office...said I would be working from home...but strangely this turned out to be a blessing.  Had my car not broken down, I would not have been home to take Mom to the hospital. 
Yep...Tone Tone and I are  sitting in the ER as I write. 
Bless her heart, her kidneys are not functioning well...and she appears to be dehydrated.  So we are here to hopefully get her re-hydrated. I was writing that last sentence...I get a call from Emily saying she is locked out of the I ran to let her in and got back before they even took Mom back.  Wow...what a day!

Mom and I have spent quite a bit of time in emergency rooms over the past several years.  We have even been in the same emergency room at the same time.  Long story!

But as I write this, I am acutely aware that I feel stronger, emotionally and physically.  Many times in the past...I myself was in such bad health that I was not able to handle everything I had to do.  I am a full contact, hands on kind of girl and there were a couple of times this last year when I was completely unable to be there for my Mom...that was hard. 
But am here...I am not sick or overwhelmed!  I am here! Full Contact Fluffy Girl!

I am also acutely aware that without God's strength and without all of the amazing support I receive from my family and friends...I would not be here!

Again, I know this Journey continues to be a blessing even amidst the tough spots!
Again, thank you all for loving me through this Journey...each in your own, unique and special way!

If God is for us, who can be against us.  Romans 8:31

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Kale Fail

Good late evening to everyone.  I have had a busy day...not bad though.  Back to work, working out and Day 4 of the cleanse.  So far, so good. 

Don't get too comfortable though...I have found something I can whine about...the one thing about food that I don't like...COOKING it! (or even preparing it)...It is true...the Fluffy Girl loves to eat but hates to cook...OK hate may be too strong but I really only enjoy cooking a few things and only when the Moon is in the Seventh House and Jupiter Aligns with Mars...just before the Dawning of the Age of Aquarius!!!  In other words, occasionally! 

So I am spending a ton of time chopping, measuring, blending, cooking, cleaning and then after all of that...I get to eat!  Good Lord People...I have figured out how to lose weight finally...because after all of the chopping, measuring, blending, cooking and cleaning...I am too damn tired to eat!  I need people, cleaning people...unfortunately, I can only afford myself!  I work cheap! 

So...I am trying to "embrace my inner chef"...LOL!  Not really...I am just trying to stick to my commitment to myself to do this for the promise of a healthier me!  That IS my motivation.  My inner chef is way in the back of the line behind all of my other "inner selves"  Take a number!!! 

I will say this...I have only had one total cooking "fail"..Kale Chips...or as I refer to it "The Kale Fail"...This is one of those moments where my Inner Fluffy Girl (first in line) wants to rear her ugly head and say...There should only be 2 kinds of chip...a potato chip and a Chocolate Chip!!!  HA!

Most of the other recipes I have tried have been pretty good.  Nothing Food Network worthy..but not bad! 

After work, I came  home to check on Mom (who is battling Diverticulitis) and eat a snack before taking a 2 mile walk.  Donna joined me on the walk...which is good!  It gives us some catch up time and I enjoyed the company!  It was a nice, crisp, chilly evening...also good for walking! 

Now I am back at home...having cooked and sufficiently I am ready to relax.

Day 5 is in view and I am ready!!

Before I go...please say prayers for my Mom...that she feels better! Also, I have a few folks in my life who are battling breast cancer and given that I believe in the remarkable power of prayer, I hope you can find a few moments to pray for each of them (Eva and Randa).

Lots of moments to be grateful for:

More unexpected Will Power
Unexpected Strength
The Joy of a New Friend
The Comfort of an Old Friend

This is an Amazing Journey and despite the fact that parts of this Journey are scary and a little overwhelming...I can't wait to see what happens next. 

 Live authentically,
and savor each previous moment
of your journey,
because the moment you arrive
at a destination,
another journey begins.
Joe Keane

“Don’t worry that you’re not
strong enough before you begin.
It is in the journey
that God makes you strong.”

Monday, February 11, 2013

Peddling a Little Faster-The Power of Inspiration

Happy Monday!  I hope all of you have had a great start to the week.  I did!  I had a vacation day!  Woo Hoo...It was a cold, dreary day here  in Houston...I had planned to get in a good outdoors, drink in some sunshine...but NO!  So, I got up...had my morning shake...watched a little T.V. and did what any self-respecting human with a rainy day off would do...I napped!!! 

I thought about cleaning out a closet or cleaning house...but napping was so much more attractive.  After my nap, I did manage to get myself to the gym for a workout..nothing too heavy.  My blood sugar levels are adjusting to the, my blood sugar has been taking a dive after my workouts.  I am trying to find the right balance so that I can avoid that feeling for the rest of this process. today is DAY 3 of the "the cleanse"...I am actually less hungry today.  This is good news considering that last night I dreamed about eating candy...not even good candy...some chewy, red, licorice type candy...that I would never actually eat anyway!  Last night, Riley (white dog) was begging for my steamed carrots and cucumber and red pepper salad...Really...I told her that if she was not careful...I was going to eat her food! (She had chicken Vienna sausages and carrots for dinner)...How is that for hungry!!!  But today has been better in general.  Headache is minimal, hunger is doable and I am adjusting to this whole veggies and fruit only thing.  But you can know this...though I am on a path to healthier eating...I have not reached the whole "no more meat thing"...I LIKE MEAT!!! 

So as I said above...I went to the Y today.  I was OK going but was not feeling "inspired" about my workout.  So, I did some stretching and decided to just do the bike.  I had been on the bike just a few minutes when I noticed a gentlemen working out on a machine.  I must admit he caught my eye because he seemed to be struggling.  I had just glanced in his direction before I realized that he had some obvious physical impairment.  I did not want to stare, obviously...however, I felt so compelled to watch...not because of his physical impairment but because of the amazing effort he was putting forth to exercise his body.  His limbs were twisted and it clearly took so much effort for him to just grip the weight machine handles.  Yet...I watched him painstakingly pull that bar to his chest...back and forth.  I did not want to continue to watch him in fear that he would see me and feel uncomfortable, so I averted my eyes...but in a few moments I watched him walk (with much struggle) across the room to a treadmill.  He stood looking at the treadmill for a few moments before he finally made the effort to place his foot on the belt.  However, he clearly could not lift himself onto the machine and after a moment or two, he walked away.  He did not stop though...he continued across the room to another machine.

I felt a number of feelings as I watched him...but the one that stuck out most was this...I felt inspired!  I watched this man...who had so many valid reasons not to subject himself to the gym...who clearly struggled to just walk across a room or open a door..I watched him "work" his body...take care of it as best he could...I watched him, I said a prayer for him, thanked God for my health and I peddled a little faster. 

Tomorrow is day #4...back to work and hopefully, ready for managing this cleanse within the confines of my normal daily activities.  I am feeling confident!

Before I go...I saw this prayer today written by Kelli Mahoney.  I thought I would share it.

Thank you, Lord, for the blessings you have bestowed on my life. You have provided me with more than I could ever have imagined. You have surrounded me with people who always look out for me. You have given me family and friends who bless me every day with kind words and actions. They lift me up in ways that keep my eyes focused on you and make my spirit soar.
Also, thank you, Lord, for keeping me safe. You protect me from those things that seem to haunt others. You help me make better choices, and you have provided me with advisors that help me with the difficult decisions. You speak to me in so many ways so that I always know you are here.
And Lord, I am so grateful for keeping those around me safe and loved. I hope that you provide me with the ability and sense to show them every day how much they matter. I hope that you give me the ability to give to them the same kindness they have provided to me. I am just so grateful for all of your blessings in my life, Lord. I pray that you remind me of just how lucky I am, and that you never allow me to forget to show my gratitude in prayer and returned kind acts. Thank you, Lord. In your name, Amen.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

As My Body Shrinks...My Heart Grows

Happy Sunday to all!  I hope today has been filled with blessings, fun, family and of course, tons of

We started our day typically..Church...with a very grouchy, sleepy and less than enthusiastic 12 year old! She brought her friend Riley at least she had someone to help her  through Confirmation class.  In Emily's defense...she was running a low grade temp.  My girl suffers with allergies from time to time!!!  Anyway, after church we took the girls home and Emily gave me my birthday present.  She made a small latch hook rug for me with a rainbow and a heart!  Very Sweet!  She was very proud of her too! 

So now typically on a Sunday after church, we go out to eat...however, the "cleanse" changes things.  I was starving!  I made a shake for breakfast..but by lunch, I was ravenous!  I am talking clear the area, take cover, do not get in my way kind of hungry!  The kind of hungry that greatly diminishes my ability to be patient and well-behaved.  So having to go home and cook...well that pretty much sucked!  I did though!  I made a sauteed squash, onion, organic tomato soup with a fresh garlic.  Not too bad.  I am doing it. I am making the effort to take it ODAT and hope that at the end of this metabolism is rockin'. 

So after finally getting a little food in my belly...I felt like I could get a few things done around the house!  Did that... then I went for a 2 mile walk in Donna's neighborhood...It was nice.  As I have said before, I like to walk without music.  I like the opportunity to be noise...other than the sounds of Sunday in the "burbs".  Lots of birds, kids, squirrels, dogs barking, an occasional leaf blower or lawn know...just neighborhood sounds.  I find that I can walk and kind of immerse myself in this kind of quiet.  I can think...pray, focus, say an occasional hello to a passerby...I like it!  It is peaceful to me.  Not really truly quiet...but definitely peaceful. 

As I start this "detox" of my body...I am reminded that it is just as important for me to maintain a healthy mind and spirit.  Almost everyday I am reminded that this Journey involves the total package.  I am not just a fluffy girl, or a Christian girl, or a 46 year old woman, or a daughter, friend, employee, etc...I am all of those things and ALL of those parts of me require my attention.  I want to DE-FLUFF...YES!!  That is definitely the obvious goal of this Journey.  BUT, I want other areas of my life to grow throughout this Journey.

 I want to honor where I am at in my life and make decisions that best support me being a better human being.  I want to be a better person, a better friend, a better daughter, cousin, niece, etc...I want my life to reflect my Faith in a way that there is no question.  I believe that my primary responsibility is to live by example and trust me, that is not something I consistently have done or do well.  I have a lot of room for growth.  I also believe that in order to grow, I have to make room for that growth.  I have to take responsibility for maintaining my emotional and spiritual health. I have to let go of the things that keep me from that growth. 

I said this to someone the other day...As my body heart grows.  That has really been my experience.  As I work to improve my physical health and lose the fluff, my capacity to appreciate other parts of my life has grown by leaps and bounds.  Thus the reason why I have been ALL ABOUT THE LOVE lately.  Despite my recent obsession with the "warm and fuzzies", it is has always been challenging for me to share my heart with such a blatant, open way.  Risky! But I have decided it is a risk worth taking! 

I have another vacation day tomorrow...hoping to give myself some space to get through Day 3 without much stress!! 

Ready for Week #26!  MAWA INSPIRED STILL!!!

Proverbs 3:3 3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.

Saturday, February 9, 2013


Hello to all and Happy Saturday! 
So today it begins!  It did not exactly start as planned as I woke up with an off the charts migraine. 
So moving or eating was not an option.  So I started at lunch and made my 1st was not too bad.  That was good news...I was a little concerned that I would not be able to drink the shakes!  I am a bit of a wimp when it comes to weird beverages.
Given the intensity of my migraine, the day has been a little more challenging than I had hoped BUT...I have managed to stick to the plan and so far...things are going much as I expected.  I AM HUNGRY!! LOL!!!  Actually, it really is not horrible and I am feeling a bit hungry.  I do eat quite a bit of protein daily and that has diminished I am guessing my body is wondering where the heck is the chicken..or dead bird (as I call it). 

Kerri Walsh did share with me that the 1st few days are the most difficult and that it is O.K. to snack  a lot!  Donna started today as well..though she is a pro...this will be her 3rd or 4th time to do this cleanse! 

I will be taking things One Day At A Time...I feel good about this process and feel like this will help me with the last half of this Journey.  So...all prayers are welcome...I will need them...For those of you that are required to see me face to face...I may be grouchy...I will do my best to behave! 

As I said briefly last night, my birthday was very enjoyable and I received so many wonderful messages, cards, calls, help me celebrate the day.  I am feeling quite loved! 

I have a few pics to share with you guys before I go...I am keeping things kinda short tonight in hopes that this migraine is gone tomorrow and I will be back to my normal, long-winded self. 

Have a blessed Sunday!  Much Love!!!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Birthday Weigh In

Happy Friday...or early Saturday morning as it were!  It has been a great Birthday and a successful Weigh In #25!  Lost 2lbs this week...Woo Hoo!!! I was quite happy to go into week 26 and the 1st week of the cleanse down 2 more pounds!  Nice!

So I did not work today which was also NICE!  I spent the day doing just what I wanted to do. When I got home last night...My sweet, sweet Mom had decorated the house with signs, decorations!  She had presents on the table and everything was so sweet! 

She made me breakfast this morning and then I headed to spend a couple of hours with someone who is very special to me and who never fails to make me smile and warm my heart.  After that, I headed  home and Mom had beautiful flowers for me and my birthday "cake" was my favorite...a pumpkin muffin top from Panera Bread-complete with candles!

I decided I wanted to get all of the fresh veggies, fruits, etc...that I will need to start this cleanse we got that done!   Headed home...where I became engrossed in all of my Facebook birthday messages, texts, emails, I even got a message from Kerri Walsh!  Wow...everyone was so phone was "blowin up" as the youngsters say!!!  LOL!  I got calls from family, friends...Emily sang a song over the phone...Happy Birthday to You....You're One Hundred and Two...You Look Like a Monkey and You Smell Like One TOO...So touching!!! :)

I got to talk to my lifelong friend Amy (in MO)...AND  I spent the evening with Donna and Mom...a girl's only birthday party.  I devoured a steak...had a drink and even had a bit of dessert!  We went to see Identity Thief (with Melissa McCarthy and Jason Bateman) freakin funny...certainly off-color but really hilarious! 

So it is 1:15 AM and I am feeling every bit of 46!  This girl is tired.  I do have a few pics to share...but that will be for tomorrow.  I also have some other birthday details to share.  Just am gonna leave all of that for tomorrow. 

But let me say this...I have some amazing friends and family.  I had a truly great day!  I am truly excited about this next year.  I can't imagine all the blessings that God has in store.!

Thank you all for your love and support.  Thanks for being gifts EVERYDAY! 

Thursday, February 7, 2013


It's Thursday...My FRIDAY!!! YAY!  I am taking Friday and Monday shortly I will on the happy bus to a 4-day weekend. 

Since I will not be in the office tomorrow, we all went to lunch today to celebrate my Day O Birth AND I ended up with 2 DESSERTS...However, I did not actually eat both!!!  My sweet friend Lindsey made her fabulous Lemon cake for I chose to eat that instead of the restaurant dessert.  Tone Tone will be getting that (AND) a piece of the office cake. 

So tomorrow I will be 46 years old and in much better health than I was in last year at this time.  Nothing wrong with that!!! 
Since I am not working tomorrow...the day will be filled with fun things capped off with dinner and a movie (Identity Thief)!  I am looking forward to the day and the 4-day weekend. 
Of course, for those of you following along most likely already know that the big 28 day cleanse starts Saturday.  I am going grocery shopping tonight and will be ready on Saturday!!!!  I am hoping that these next 28 days wake up this tired old metabolism of mine and help me finish off the last half of the Journey...
I can't believe it...but Feb 17th will be the HALFWAY point on this Journey!!!!  I may need an extension!!!!  Do I have to file paperwork for that????

Despite the fact that I am not exactly "on track", the changes in the way I feel, how my clothes fit and of course, the immeasurable amount of LOVE and support I have received have made this Journey quite remarkable so far. 

I am looking forward to the "rest" of the Journey.  I do hope you will continue you on with me!!!

Before I is a list of a few other people who were born on Feb 8th as well!!! Just for fun!

  • John Grisham-Author
  • John Williams-Composer
  • Mary Steenburgen-Actress
  • Jack Lemmon-Actor
  • Lana Turner-Actress
  • Jules Verne-Author
  • James Dean-Actor
  • Alonzo Mourning-NBA Pro
  • Ted Koppel-Newscaster

  • Kathy Heagy Mizell-Esteemed Humble High School Alumni and Former Humble Wildcat Twirler -Graduate of Southwest Texas State-Go Bobcats! Wife, Mother and of course,  Friend of the Fluffy Girl!!!! 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Where Happy Little Bluebirds Fly

It is a dreary Wednesday here in Houston...lots of gloominess.  That made my commute this morning "extra special"...Wowza!! 
So here I am at lunch and ironically, I am thinking about rainbows...just a few posts removed from saying that this blog will most likely NOT be about rainbows, fluffy clouds and unicorns in tall green grass.  Funny enough...I truly did not remember saying that until I actually typed the word "rainbow"...I REALLY am thinking about rainbows today.  Maybe not in the most traditional sense...but I am thinking about them.

 However, holding true to my previous statement...I will NOT be discussing fluffy clouds OR unicorns in tall green grass...I WILL be discussing MY fluffiness and the promise of rainbows. 

So everyday at work...I plug in my headphones and listen to my Pandora station of choice...For the past several work days I have been listening to my Eva Cassidy station which consists primarily of female my opinion, real singers...not just music artists.  But Eva Cassidy...if you have not heard her story, she is the inspirational voice for me.  In part, because she achieved acclaim AFTER she died of cancer at the age of 33.  But more so because of her family, friends and her small following of faithful fans that did everything they could to make sure the world heard her sing.  But the primary reason I find her inspirational is the heart with which she sings. 

So today I am working and I hear her version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow.  One of those songs that just speaks so far beyond the original meaning of the lyrics...especially the way the she sings it. 
The lyrics of the song have special does the song itself.  I always wanted to perform this entire music career.  I actually did the passing of a long life on this Earth...a celebration of that life...which was a perfect place to sing this song. 

Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high,
There's a land that I heard of
Once in a lullaby.

Somewhere over the rainbow
Skies are blue,
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true.

Someday I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far
Behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me.

Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly.
Birds fly over the rainbow.
Why then, oh why can't I?

If happy little bluebirds fly
Beyond the rainbow
Why, oh why can't I?

When I read the lyrics I think of the Promise the Rainbow represents...for me.  In my opinion, for Everyone.  God's Promise.

As I have struggles along this Journey to literally lose a portion of myself, I continue to believe that  while I "lose" I will gain so much more...I will find parts of myself, hidden behind the fluff...Somewhere over the Rainbow!

I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Genesis 9:13

If you have a moment to take and listen/watch the below recording...I think you will be touched by her heart. 

Somewhere Over the Rainbow-Eva Cassidy

SO...back to workouts tonight....Only a few days left in Week 25 and only a few days left of being 45 for me.  I told a friend that I would be 46 on Friday...and I am feeling younger and younger everyday!  Not kidding!!!

What God does for us-He does in us~ C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Mystery of Grace

Hello and Good Evening...I sound a bit like Dracula...Good it is approaching 11:00 PM on Tuesday evening.  I went back to work today.  Still feeling a little "off" but am better. 

 I have actually started some new job duties at work and I like the change.  It may not last forever but for now I like what I am that is a nice change from the last several chaotic weeks.  Several of my co-workers and I (more so for them) have really faced some rather daunting work challenges and the stress levels in our office has been off the charts.  They are so young and bless their hearts...I am NOT.  I have BEEN there and DONE that and watching them struggle is quite challenging.  Unfortunately, the part of me that worked 60-70+ hours per week, weekends, national holidays, etc...well, she be gone!!! 

I worked 50+ hours for several weeks and was emotionally and physically drained.  So as I approach my 46th birthday...I aware of something for the 1st time.  I am OK not being the overachiever in my professional life.  I am not large and in charge.. just large! ( I could not resist).  I do my job with integrity, honesty and I do work hard.  But I can longer sacrifice my sanity for a paycheck.  I have spent many nights turning off the lights in the office and still do at times.  This makes me unhappy and it is not fulfilling.  So as I continue on this Journey to lose weight, regain my health, find balance in my life, I must accept that I must work to LIVE. and not the other way around.  I like my job and I love my co-workers and I have to have a quality life outside of the office.  My life depends on it. 

So do not ask what got me on that...just thinking I guess.  This is all new to me in many ways and you guys are my often my sounding board.  I am taking these thoughts that I have...these little "light bulb" moments and putting them on paper (virtual paper)...maybe I will turn them into something bigger one day.  SPOILER ALERT AND WARNING:  I may have other "soap box-esque" moments to share as I approach another birthday...You have been warned!! :)

I am done for tonight.  Time for the Fluffy to get some sleep!  I must say that I am still amazed by God's Grace.  It is quite mysterious.  I often don't recoginize it until it washes over me and I very rarely see it coming....I found this quote today and shared it on Facebook...I want to share it here too! 

"I do not at all understand the mystery of grace--only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us"~Anne LaMott

I heard the below song today...I don't think I have ever heard it before.  I loved it.  It is haunting and touching. 

Alison Krauss-A Living Prayer

Monday, February 4, 2013

The Fluffy Girl and Being Vulnerable

Hello and Happy Monday!  I hope today has been healthy, happy and productive.

My Monday was spent at home.  Not feeling well today so I stayed home and took some time to recuperate.  I am actually feeling a little better this evening.  NO workout today though!  Giving my body a rest. 

In the past few days I have received some really precious thoughts from friends and family and I am so grateful that amidst a rather tough several days for me,  that they have taken the time and had the courage to share with me those thoughts.  It gives me strength and hope and proves that God is right there with me...through every step of this Journey. 

As I read some of the thoughts my friends have shared...I began to realize that vulnerability is an important part of this Journey for me.  I am choosing to be vulnerable.  I knew that when I made the executive decision to document this process DAILY.  Especially when I realized that I was not going to be creating a blog filled just with healthy recipes, exercise tips and that what I really would be talking about was the physical, emotional and spiritual journey that I was embarking upon.  It did not take too long before I realized that this would be a risk.  By being vulnerable, I open myself to the reactions, feelings and truthfully, judgement of others and to my own reactions, feelings and personal judgements.

 I share things here ( in writing) that I have not been able to verbalize in the past.  I did not know HOW vulnerable I would allow myself to be here and I can tell you that at times I have major risk remorse after sharing some of what is happening on this Journey.  But it has occurred to me that by trusting that God is with me and going ahead and taking that risk, the results...the gifts I am receiving are priceless.  I am finding that other people are taking that same risk and by doing so, they are modeling Faith and Courage.  What a terrific gift. 

I know I do not write with great eloquence or say things in the most clear manner, but I am grateful for the words I do have as they are serving as freedom for me...Freedom from all of the things that have kept me stuck for so long. 

Thank you to those of you that have taken the risk to share with me your own Journey.  I am blessed by your words.


My Uncle's birthday is tomorrow and my birthday is Friday...So here is what you all need to know.  Birthday's in my family have always been about some extent.  We all have our own "birthday meals" and favorite cakes.  We don't just celebrate the day...we are often a birthday "week" kind of family.  SO...this is my first birthday to celebrate along this Journey to LOSE weight.  My challenges will be many this week.  But I have decided to not be reasonable in my food choices but not crazed!  I figure the timing will be perfect leading up to cleanse month!  I WILL PREVAIL...LOL!!! 

Love to all of you and thank you for sharing your hearts with me!!!


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Making an effort to just BE!

Happy Sunday to all...It has been a somewhat low-key day in these parts.  Church, errands, more errands and a nap for me.  I am feeling a bit under the weather tonight and am hoping that it is just allergies! 

I have made an effort this weekend to disconnect a bit, take a break and get some rest.  I think I was able to accomplish that to some extent.  It is good sometimes to take a step back, breathe and make an effort to just BE.  

I have a busy week ahead and have several things to look forward to this week.  I am hoping to get in a few good workouts and continue this Journey with the same intensity and inspiration that I have had from the get go! 

As I have said many times, this blog is not always going to be pretty...with rainbows and fluffy clouds and unicorns dancing in tall green grass! But it will be as honest as I can be within the context of this Journey.  So having said that, despite the fact that I am having a bit of a bumpy ride for the past several days, I am still fully committed to this Journey, still inspired, still dedicated and still human...which means that I will have triumphs and stumbles along the way. 

I hope you will all bear with me and know that God is in charge of this Journey...despite my efforts to take over! 

I am ready for this week #25 and am willing walking into the next chapter of this year long Journey! 

I received an incredibly kind, heartfelt message from my dear, college roommate extraordinaire today on Facebook.  It really served as a reminder to me that I have so much amazing support and God has big plans for this Journey and ALL that means. 

I talk a lot about knowing that this Journey is about so much more...than just losing weight!  I believe that with every fiber of my being!  It is evident to me in so many ways and if I ever start to doubt that or seems that I receive something like this...a note from a friend or even a stranger.  I have learned that if I listen closely...I can hear God!  So thank you Marian.  I hope you do not mind that I am sharing an excerpt of your very kind message with everyone.  You can know that your words are priceless and that today I heard God in your words.  Thank you for walking this walk with me...You have reminded me and are proof..that I am just a very small part of what God has in store!

You are going through this weight-loss-get-fit-for-life journey and we are all pulling for you. Somedays, I feel like I'm on it with you and that's exactly what I'm trying to put into words. You make others around you want to be with you on this journey. It isn't a conscious thing, I"m sure, it's just who you are. Here I am over a thousand miles away from you and I am moved by what you write, changed by what you are going through, and reminded that life is so very precious...

I am so thankful for your blog. It has pulled me out of some real "poor me" days. I read it and I know that you are experiencing some rough days and somedays wonder if you'll ever reach your goal. Well, I don't doubt that you will, not for one second. It might not be in the exact time you planned, but I think God has you on a Journey of Discovery. I think that you are learning more about yourself and what is good for you...and I don't just mean healthy food and exercise. In the process, your journey, as you share it with others, has had that ripple effect. YOU are changing our lives too! 

Before I go, the sermon at church this morning was about Jesus being The Good Shepherd.  We are his flock and though the below scripture often reminds me of death (I have heard it at funerals all of my life) as I listened this morning...for me, it is really about life.  I read it with that in mind and as Marian says above...Life is so very precious and if I follow the Shepherd..."surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life"

Psalm 23

King James Version (KJV)
23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Short and Sweet

Good Saturday Evening to you all...I hope today has been quite lovely! 

In an effort to give myself a bit of a "brain break", this post will be short and sweet!  I did get in a 3 mile walk today and my co-worker/friend Kristen found a dog for Mom and I to get for my Uncle Mike's birthday (next week).  Kristen was out and about in the Heights and came across a young Chihuahua mix named Jessica (now Consuela..aka Connie).  She texted me and we hopped in the car, bolted to the Heights and adopted her.  Thank you Kristen for your help and hanging out while we got the dog!!!!  The dog is really sweet!! 
I will have pics to share later.  He was thrilled and I know she is going to have a good home. 

This day has been long and I am tired.  I hope you all have a glorious Sunday!!


Friday, February 1, 2013

Weigh In #24-Nothing Lost-Nothing Gained

TGIF!!! In a big way!!!!  I am not sure what difference a day makes...but I am hoping for a big difference. 

It has just been a trying week and as I weight lost this week.  DAMN!  Oh well...maybe my muscles got bigger!!  Nothing Lost...but Nothing Gained!!!

So I am so over this week.  Mentally, I checked out yesterday!  I feel like I am literally counting the minutes til this workday is over and I can stare into space for the next 48 hours.  I am not even particularly excited  about the Super Bowl!!!  I may be ill!!! :)

I am looking forward to keeping a low profile and maybe getting outdoors a bit! 

I am hoping for a better Week #25...The "cleanse" starts next Saturday...Did I mention it was 28 days long...Can you say CRAZY!!!!  I think I am ready and I have one more week to mentally prepare. 
I am such a typical Fluffy girl though...I am going out to dinner on Wed AND Friday of next week...Stockpiling FOOD!!! 

I had a co-worker tell me today that I was going to be grouchy during the cleanse...I don't know why he is warning me...HE is the one who should be worried!!!  LOL!!!  I think we ALL know the dangers of removing carbs from a Fluffy girl's diet.  Be Afraid...Be very Afraid. 

I did have a better workout last night...
  • Did a warm-up on the Evil Elliptical (one mile)
  •  60 crunches,
  •  a kettle bell/free weight arm workout. 
  •  3 sets/10 reps on horizontal leg press at 160lbs,
  •  3/10 at 60lbs on vertical row machine,
  •  3/10 at 60lbs on lower back machine
  •  3/10 at 50lbs-leg curls
  •  3/10 at 50lbs shoulder press
  •  Walked a mile
Took about 1.5 hours...was trying to work off some stress...

So as I enter this next week...I will be focusing on my goals, preparing for the next challenges and mini-goals and looking forward to this 28 day cleanse (in theory).  Most importantly, I will be focusing on being Quiet and Listening for God's instructions!

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend...Here are a few Blessings before I go:

A sweet note from a co-worker

An impromptu clarinet concert from my Sweetest Pea!
Have a great rest of the day...See you tomorrow!  JLP