Saturday, August 31, 2013

GROOVES For The Soul

The surprise mini-goal. A rare event! A surprise mini-goal with old friends, fun music, and a God moment...Unheard of!

Well that happened!  Today!!

Let me start from the beginning. ..when I started this Journey a year high school and college friend Kathy suggested that I join her for a class..a fitness class called Soul Grooves.  At the time, I said sure. ..but give me a little time to get my groove back! forward to last week. ..Kathy and her sweet family volunteered for Play It Forward.  After it was over, Kathy and I had a conversation about the class again and she followed up with me and we made a plan!

So today at 10:00 AM I met Kathy, her daughter Cloie and friend Kayla for the class. We even ran into another HHS friend...Carrie!  Fun!

Wow...what a class!  Big music.  Lots of grooves and moves. Now please know...I was clueless...and my groove was not so no groovy.   But I slowly began to "get in the groove"
It was another of those experiences that I realized right in the middle of it...that this was no ordinary moment!
The instructor (Tammy)...was a for days....and she had a message.  My First fitness class ever and I get an instructor who is dialed in to God.

Accident? I think not!!

So as the class progressed, Tammy shared about the importance of taking care of ourselves. ..not giving up. ..having a strong faith...trusting our path...trusting God. .all things I discuss as a part of my Journey...only as she shared with this PACKED class.  She was looking straight at me.  She was talking TO ME.

I even joked with my friend. ..asking her if the instructor had been "tipped off" about me...
But no! According to Tammy...she just felt led to say those words AND just felt led to say them to me!

Who knew that God took the 10:00 AM Soul Grooves class at Lifetime Fitness in Humble, TX...

So the Fluffy girl got her groove on with some old friends, a well connected instructor, and God...not a bad Saturday! It was tough, fun, uplifting groove for the Soul!

Before I go...last night was spent enjoying high school, awesome friends, and great kids!
My cousins Wes and Wil and the New Boston Lions won an emotional 1st game and "The Men" both had interceptions!

And my drill team girls danced beautifully. YAY...Jillian and Olivia.  YAY Eagles!

Lastly.  My sweet Mama likes to post fun signs on the door leading from the garage to the house.  OVERCOMER! LOVE IT!

Friday, August 30, 2013

The Fluffy Girl and Texas High School Football!!! A tribute!

IT IS FRIDAY....WOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!! A 3 day weekend ahead and I am ready...It has been a whirlwind the last few months and particularly in the last few weeks and days!!!

I am still so SORE from my "new" workout program...I am afraid that my waddle walk this week has warranted a few strange looks and some laughs...LOL!!! But I have made a very important discovery!  When I am this sore...Groaning loudly when I move is necessary...more like Squawking...But it works...I forget how much it hurts to move when I am obnoxiously loud!!!

So it is a big time here in the Great State of TEXAS...It is opening weekend of Texas High School Football Season...HELL TO THE YEA!!! The Fluffy LOVES FOOTBALL!!!

I will be attending the Atascocita Eagles game tonight to watch the game but more Importantly to watch the Patriettes Dance Team...I got people dancin'...YAY Jilly and Olivia!!! 

Tonight in the great little town of New Boston, TX  my twin stud muffin cousins Wesley and Wilson will be suiting up for their Senior Year!!!  These boys are great kids.  Please keep them in your prayers as they will be playing the first game of the season without one of their teammates...Se'maj Williams lost his life in a tragic accident.  I will keep them all in my heart and in my prayers.  I am proud of them for suiting up and playing the sport that they all love! 


I am really grateful that I have developed so many cool relationships in the last year...I have had so really great opportunities to connect with people all over the country and even a few in other countries due to this experience.  One of those people is a young lady named Karen...She is a BIG Kerri Walsh fan and she and I have connected via Twitter over the past few months...She tweeted this today to Kerri and her partner Whitney as a good luck message for this weekends AVP tour stop in Cincy!  I loved it and told her that I had full intentions of stealing it and sharing it here!

This is included in a lyric to a contemporary Christian song...Given that I will be cheering on, praying for and supporting the Eagle and Lions tonight...I thought these two graphics were perfect!


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Staying in the Lines

Earlier today I posted this on Facebook..."Just so all of you know...There are some days that I just do NOT like being a grown up!!!

I posted something similar on Twitter...Every once in a while...this whole being a "grown up" thing is for the birds...craving a I may need to color!

So clearly I spent a portion of my day whining on my favorite social media outlets...I am SOOO good at it!! 

Today was a difficult day.  More difficult than I can say and  that the day is drawing to a close...I am so very aware that with  prayer, with the loving support of my friends and Mom...with lots and lots more prayers...a few tears and a stomach ache...I got through it!  I put on my Big Girl Pants and I forged onward...

I did not do it perfectly...I made some mistakes...and my hope is that no permanent damage was done.  I made an important decision today that feels like one more step in a positive the direction that will allow me to further take hold of this vision of a more balanced, happier, healthier life! 
As the past couple of  days have flown by...I began to realize that there are times when I miss being a kid...truly not thinking about big things...big decisions..instead my focus was just on things like staying inside the lines when I was coloring.... and having a full box of properly sharpened Crayola crayons. 
I  love coloring...always have and still do...I like to color as a way of relaxing and I still struggle to stay inside the lines...just never was a prolific colorer!!!  My Mom and My Aunt Bobbie are the best colorers I have ever known...they could always stay perfectly within the lines....remarkable!

However...I may have been one of those kids (and adults) that was quite challenged when it comes to coloring inside the lines....It could be contributed to a certain amount of innate impatience!  I was more concerned about using ALL of my colors more than taking my time with each color!!! 

This decision I had to make today required that I do my best to stay within the lines and that I did not use too many "colors" too quickly in my decision making process.  I felt like I needed to be patient.  It was important that I stayed patient and did not rush the process. 

Truthfully...that continues to be one of my biggest challenges along this Journey...Patience...I have certainly talked about it before...but I felt like I needed to address it again today.  You see...for one of the first times in my life...I took my time...Did my best to color within the lines...because it was necessary.  I need to slow down and listen for God's guidance...not be influenced by fear, guilt,  worry or any other reactive emotion.  Now truthfully...I don't mind being a crazy colorer....I like the fact that I color with lots of colors...makes things interesting...But I must admit that there are certain situations...certain moments...that staying within the lines leads to clarity and precision..

My decision today required both clarity and precision.  I could not blur the lines...I needed to be patient.  I needed God's guidance...

So...Now that my decision is made...I think I am going to bust open a brand new box of crayons...Color with every color in the my best to stay in the lines...but if I creep out every once in a be it! coloring was not perfect...but it was my best effort.  Now I must sleep. 

Thank all of you for your prayers and helping me be patient! 

Lindsey, Donna, Claire, Chisem, Tone Tone...thank you all!!! You guys are some sharp Crayolas!!!

My Lindsey sent me this today...I thought I would share it!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

God Centered-Not Self Centered

I think that a lot of overcoming addiction in my case...Is about about trusting the truth.  Trusting my ability to tell the truth, recognizing the truth and trusting the part of me that has all the means necessary to discern the truth in any situation. The last part of that for me is accepting truth at face value...Not twisting it...or distorting it out of fear, anger, or any other emotion that resides in this brain of mine!!

For me, developing that ability...lies solely in my ability to rely on my relationship with God.  That trust I speak of is Faith.  At least that is what is true for me.  If I can truly stay in relationship with God...then I can stay in truth...It is when I meander...and stray a bit that I can find myself searching for comfort.

So when I can't tell the truth or hear the truth...I turn to things that comfort me...I look for ways to distract and of course, FOOD has been one of those pacifiers for me.  I have other crutches that I rely on too...but food...well food has done the most damage! 

So as I march head first into the 2nd year of this Journey...on the heels of a wonderful celebration of the 1st year...I am faced with my least favorite kind of truth...Truth about my feelings...telling the truth when I know that someone else is going to be hurt by it!  Even if I make every effort to be as respectful as possible.  To stay out of my reactivity and stay in God's reality...that is the tricky part for me. 

I find myself with 2 opportunities this week that are both stretching me way outside of my comfort zone AND...I have really shifted back into high gear in my exercise program and food plan.  Not necessarily a easily navigated path for me!!!  Working my body AND my mind at the same time...well...that ain't purdy!!!  HA. 

So despite the success I have experienced and the high I am on from all of the great things happening around me in the past few weeks...I have truth to tell.  Tough Truth. 

I have had to face confrontation in my personal life and I have a big decision to make this week.  Both are causing me pain and I am pretty sure, at the very minimum, have added a bit of stress to other's lives. 

Not to be cryptic...but I do need to be respectful.  Sufficed to say...with every thing going on...I would really like to soothe with food! 

So in an effort to alleviate the emotional cravings..I am writing about it here.  At least to the extent that I feel comfortable doing so.

I am faced with confrontation with someone I have had in my life for a very long time...Someone that has had their own demons to overcome...Someone that I care about very much...however, I find myself feeling angry and hurt. much as I wanted to not even address the issue...My gut..and my heart led me to me to say what I needed to say...though not said very was said.  Sadly, It has been met with silence...which is always hard.  The hard part about the telling the 'truth" is to somehow not have any expectations about how that truth will be received.  The even harder part is accepting that there are times in my life when I have to make painful decisions...accept my part...and let go and truly turn it over to God.  So my pain this week is about speaking the truth and letting go of what that may mean for the future. The not knowing part! 

I am also faced with the challenge of making a decision that could impact this current path that I am on...a path that I am liking so far.  I really need to keep God's voice in the forefront.  For the first time in a lot of years...I have a clear head...not everyday...but so many more days than I used to! 

My Journey is my priority today.  Keeping my Faith in 1st place, My Health and being present in the lives of those that I love and cherish.  Priorities.  Behind those three things...comes everything else...and in a different order depending on the situation. 

Here is the cool part for me.  I REALLY want this Journey to continue with the same vigor...with the same emphasis that it has had over the past year.  I am not losing steam!  I am still so inspired...Now not only by those that inspired me originally but ALL of the other inspirational God moments I encounter daily...and they do happen daily...I have to just be willing to "see" them!

I don't want to soothe with Food..but instead push through with courage...with strength and with a continued spirit that says I will not have my butt kicked by life circumstances but instead...face them and overcome them with ENERGY.  I want to continue to recognize the blessings...the gifts and experience the growth while my physical body slowly shrinks!!

You see...there is no turning back for me. I face the difficult realities of today...I know that the decisions I make have to be about the next stop AHEAD on this Journey.  I know that I have to be God Centered and not Self Centered...(the voice in my head says...Good Luck With That!!!) LOL!!!  My friend Donna will find that particularly funny!!!

I have to make decisions that take care of myself and not of others...because IF I take care of myself...I can be a better person and my ability to truly be present, caring, attentive and honest...all increase when I physically, emotionally and spiritually take care of myself...Not Selfish...But instead Self Care!

Last night I did my first workout designed by Kerri's trainer.  He, of course, is in I do not have the benefit of that my face, kind of accountability one gets with a trainer.  However...I decided that I HAD to be accountable to ME...I had to push like a trainer would push me...I had to think like an athlete...I had to WANT to be better...The cool part...I did that!! I kicked my own butt and today my BUTT is letting me know that my workout was successful! 

I really need to continue to move forward...without the aid of food...or anything other crutch...I need to know that I can finish this a full relationship with God and ALL of the ways that God chooses to remind me that He is with me...every step of the Way!

I will need your prayers.  As soon as you have a minute...Today is a big day!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Experience-New Confidence-New Hope

Slight change in plans...I was supposed to start my new "weight lifting" workout last body had different plans.  I guess you could say that my body was done!  I left work, went home, had dinner and then felt horrid!!!  I think because I do not experience feeling ill nearly as much as I used to...that when I do now...I REALLY do! 

So, as many of you know, one of my struggles has been "listening" to my body and taking needed breaks.  Last night...I behaved!  I actually fell to sleep at 7:30 PM...I have not done that my whole life!!! I have ALWAYS been a night going to sleep at 7:30 is quite unusual. 

I did wake up for about an hour at 10:30 PM...but managed to go back to sleep!  I think the weekend finally caught up to me. 

Speaking of the weekend, I am still so amazed at how great it was...How fulfilling it was to pull off the event surrounded by my friends and family AND all of the folks that I got to meet!!  I am looking forward to being able to announce the donation totals...but am waiting to finalize a few details before doing so! 

If you would like to see pics of the event...I am posting them as I receive can check them out on our Facebook page.

Play it Forward PHOTOS

So...tonight I WILL be working out and getting focused on the next stage of this Journey!

My friend Donna said something to me that I know I must do...(I am paraphrasing)...She said she does not want me to forget ALL that has happened in the past year and to build on that this year...KNOWING that God is soooo in Charge!!!

After everything that I was blessed enough to experience in the past year has surely been plenty of evidence of the presence of miracles in my life!!! Now...I must be responsible for trusting that evidence and not falling back on my worry crutch and certainly not on my food crutch....Now that I think about it...if crutches were made of FOOD...I would probably eat them!!! LOL!

So..I am MOVING FORWARD with new confidence and new Hope!  I can tell you that I will continue to need the support and prayers and I will need to continue to do all within my power to stay in God's power! 

Back to WORK!!!!  I will soon make a mini-goal announcement!!! 

Here are a few sneak peek pics from Saturday...Please keep in touch with our Facebook page...the planning for next year has already begun...sort of!!!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Get Ready-Here I Come!

So...It is Monday and I am settling back in to the New to speak...Year 2 of what I can only as amazing as this past year of De-Fluffing!!!

Last night...I could barely sleep...I just kept replaying all of the great moments of the day and the entire weekend...and THEN it happened...I began to think of people I did not thank in my post...Now...I must admit that when I started writing last night...I knew it would be profoundly risky given my age and mental attempt to thank everyone that had played a special part in the day...BUT...I really wanted to give as much recognition as I could to those people who made the day even more special!

I went over it and over it before I published the post...and was feeling quite frisky about my ability to think of everyone..until about 4:00 AM...when I awoke with a small list in my head of people...people whom I did not include last night!!!  CRAP!!!!

So for those of you that I forgot last night...I hope you will forgive my by no means is any indication of any other than my aging brain! 

So...I may have  to continue to thank people for the next several days!!! 

  • Thanks to my former employers Paula Thoreen and Gary Hale for their generous support!
  • Thanks to my cousins Steve and Donna James for the making the drive from Crosby AND to my cousin Steve for keeping up with the that is a brave man...reading the daily musings of a middle-aged, hormonally impaired woman!!!  Love you guys!
  • Thanks to Jay Khatani...the newest youngster in my office...for joining us and being so willing to volunteer!!
  • Thanks to Sports Authority for being willing to actually come to our event and hand out cool coupons, wristbands and Koozies!!! Not to mention..they donated cash cards as well!!!
  • Thanks to Stefanie Wisenbaker for her generous donation.
Like I said...It was a risky proposition trying to individually thank as many people as I possibly could..I hope you can appreciate the effort...I meant well!!!

So yesterday...after getting a good nights sleep...I decided that despite my REALLY sore body...I wanted to keep my body moving so that I could actually "walk" today!!!  SOOOOO....I played a little basketball with my 15 year old (Soon to be 16 year old)...cousin Carter...We shot a few hoops and I even won a game of PIG..:)))  We always used to play HORSE when I was a it is PIG...hmmm...can I blame that on the general shortening of all words due to excessive texting???  I figure life must be pretty busy when one has to shorten just K!  So maybe PIG is the new HORSE...who knows...but I had a great time with him!!!

After that...I managed to squeeze in a short 7 mile bike ride with Donna...after that...I was TOAST!!!
So very tired!!

I blogged after that and prepared to start off this Monday with a ready and willing spirit!!! 

Again...this past weekend was yet another amazing experience...I just can't thank you all enough!  I have received some lovely, thoughtful messages and I so look forward to seeing pics and posting those soon!!

Before I go...Today is my Aunt Bobbie's birthday!!! One of the kindest people I know!  I hope your day has been filled with blessings and I am so glad we got to spend some time with you yesterday!!

Love you!!!

OK...I am ready for my new workout...Dead lifts, lunges, weights versus machines and the ROWING machine...HELLOOOO!!!  I am sure I will be able to fill up a post or two about my feelings for the rowing machine!!!  But I am ready to kick it into high gear!!!

Year 2...Get Ready Cause Here I come!!!

Get Ready-The Temptations

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Blessed Beyond Belief

Good Sunday Evening...What an absolutely STELLAR Weekend!!!  Just let me say first that this 46 year old Fluffy Girl is BLESSED BEYOND BELIEF!!!

I know that I spend an inordinate amount of time talking about the Blessings I have received along this weight loss Journey...But let me say...I don't talk about it near enough!!!! 

So yesterday was the culmination of a years worth of blood, sweat and tears...OK..I don't think I actually bled...figuratively speaking of course...I did ALL of that!!!!  Saturday was our 1st ANNUAL Play It Forward-Rally to Serve Charity Volleyball Event! 

What an amazing day!  Seriously...I was surrounded by a team of people that allowed me to just have an amazing day...We ALL worked hard leading up to the event and then the Day of the Event..My team told me to have FUN and to just enjoy this moment along my Journey...How absolutely cool is that!!!  I felt loved...all warm and fuzzy and I felt like a new human being again in that moment...I played non-stop volleyball against a fantastic group of youngsters...Mostly 12-15 year old club volleyball players...that were so TALENTED and so incredibly well behaved!!!  They only laughed at us old people a little!!!!  My geezer friends (wink wink) were equally as AMAZING and pretty well-behaved!

My family was there in force...Thanks to the Crain family, my Cousin Julie for driving 6 hours to support this event, my cousin Lori and kids, Aunt Lois, cousins Vicky and family, Kyle, Julie, Clay, Clint, Georgia, Harper, Carter...and My Aunt Charlotte for coming in from San Diego!!!! 

Thanks to ALL of Lindsey's family for working so hard!!!!  I so enjoyed getting to spend some time with you guys...sorry I did not get to spend more time!!!

Thanks to our great friends Annette and Chris Michels...for working their BUTTS off...the Food was wonderful!!!

Thanks to two of my VERY first coaches (Humble Middle School)...Renee Neely Crews and Carolyn Farr..for making this day very special!

Thanks to Ann, Larry, Keith, Michelle and Kids...Loved seeing you guys and thanks SO very much for all of your support!

Thanks to Pat Holzshu...YOU ROCK!!

Thanks to Wisenbaker Builder  Services
Thanks to Scott Martin
Thanks to Brigette and the entire McEachern, Westphal, Westmoreland families...for being so kind, giving and making our Silent Auction so KICKIN'

Thanks to Claire, Jonathan, Kyle, Gavin and Family, Matt and Family for being some of the best co-workers ever!!!! Thanks to my boss Del and Earline for joining us...So grateful for the support!

Thanks to Kristen and Stephen for working so hard not only on yesterday's event but for undertaking just about every "mini-goal" I have undertaken!!!

Thanks to my school friend and team mate Tina...for playing volleyball with us...Loved that you were there!!! So important!

Thanks to my precious friend for Mary Dadura...your humor and kindness always make me smile!

Thanks to my sweet Donna, Bill and guys are so important to me!!!

Thanks to Kathy, John Michael, Cloie and Olivia!

Thank you Laura Jean for being there and for your amazing heart and uncanny ability always get me back to God along my Journey! 

Thanks to my precious Mama for being my biggest, best and brightest fan!!! 

A special thanks to Willowbrook Sports Complex for donating an amazing facility!! Thanks to Jeff and Cindy Hill for their generosity and kindness! Thanks to Susan, Gordon, John and Staff for ALL of  your hard work and for being patient with us during our inaugural year!!!  We will get better!!!

Thanks to ALL of the volunteers...referees, silent auction buyers and thanks to ALL of the local businesses that contributed to our event.  Please check out our Facebook page over the next week for a list of our contributors and for some GREAT photos of the event!!! 

And thanks to Kerri Lee Walsh Jennings for inspiring this entire Journey...for taking the time to support this event and for all of the sweet words of support, love and inspiration she has provided along the way.  I am proud to share our story!!/PlayItForwardRallyToServe

We will  be announcing our grand totals over the next week or so and will let you all know when the Donation to Cy-Hope and Good Tidings are presented!

Again...It was a wonderful day...We had roughly 150 or so kids, adults, players and spectators that I hope got to sample the amazing Joy and Blessings I have experienced through all of the wonderful people in my life and through the overwhelming love of God! 

Lastly, Today was a big day in the Jennings Family!!!! Please take a moment to congratulate Kerri and Casey for winning the Women's (Kerri and her partner Whitney) and the  Men's (Casey and his partner Matt)  AVP Manhattan Beach Open today!!! That is a big damn deal!!!  Amazing and I cannot think of more deserving people!  They are living proof of the amazing power of hard work, strong family love and abiding faith!  I admire their strength and courage!!!  So deserving and so sweet!!!

Tomorrow is the real beginning of year 2 for me...Back to Work...Back to Life...Back to the business  of Living in the Light of God's Love!!!  Back to De-Fluffing!!!

Thank you again to EVERY single person  that attended the event yesterday!!! We did it!!! We are making a difference and We are ALL Blessed!!!!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Goodnight and God Bless

Let me say that today was amazing...incredible, I truly loved every minute.. and TOMORROW. ..I will tell u all about it...Tonight I am a good way! So gooonight..God Bless You and Thank You from the bottom of my heart.

All my love...jaime

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Big Day...Play It Forward!!!

HELLO MY FRIENDS! It is  so very late and I have been non-stop the ENTIRE day! 

Tomorrow (today) is the BIG EVENT!!! The big day to celebrate a year on an absolutely amazing, mind blowing, blessing filled, butt kicking, heart changing, gut busting, uplifting, life changing year!!!!

Tomorrow is about SHARING God's precious gifts with others..."Play It Forward"...I, along with everyone involved, will have the opportunity to see our hard work and the amazing work God has done in our lives come to fruition...ACCOMPLISHMENT! 

I had the honor of working with people that I love dearly today to prepare for tomorrow...I got to share the process with my Mom and my friends and with a group of people who are sharing the miracle by donating their facility to us and giving us a space to share our experience, strength and HOPE!

After finishing the bulk of our set up for tomorrow...and after hours of errands and lists...I left the venue, ran home, showered and dressed for a friends 25th wedding anniversary party! 

I really wanted to be there to celebrate with my friend.  She has been an amazing gift...a precious addition to my life  in the last year...A God  gift along this Journey!  She has a precious heart and I felt very honored that she included me in this event this evening. 

For me...though tonight turned in to another one of those moments where the presence of God was so clear...that I left knowing once again...that God is not only working in my life but He is working through the blessings He has given me.  I got to be a part of a very special and precious moment tonight.  I was profoundly touched and was inspired by being there...Inspired by the faith of two young men and their relationship with their precious parents.  God touched my heart through them. 

Again...I AM BLESSED! 

So even though it is really late and I am soooo nervous about tomorrow...tonight was priceless!  A priceless God moment...and provided me with a lovely reminder of the Strength that lies in having Faith!

So boys...I am honored, touched, inspired and am so grateful for the experience. 

Thank you!

Tomorrow will be as it is supposed to be...I hope you will join us...Laugh with me...You can even laugh AT me if  you would  I fulfill my year one PLAY IT FORWARD...BY Playing Volleyball again!!!

Tomorrow...Willowbrook Sports Complex...1:00 PM...BE THERE!  :))))

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Perfectly Perfect

OK...So...Several months ago...I bought a bracelet...A Faith bracelet...I bought one for myself and one for my dear friend Donna...It served  as a daily reminder for me that God is right there with every moment...I just have to believe and have Faith.

This is the bracelet...and given that I bought one for Donna so that we could have Faith can only imaging how bad I felt when I lost it...the bracelet that is!  Heartbroken!  Even worse..I could not find another  just like it!  So...I have been moping around for a couple of  weeks saddened by the loss of the bracelet...But acutely aware  that despite the loss...I still had my Faith!!!  Thank Goodness. 

Though as this event got closer and closer...I was aware that it would be really fantastic to have that gentle reminder on my arm...just  that little nudge during the day to boost my Faith mojo!!! have had a renewal of the form of this:

 I went out today and bought this for myself...As a reminder that Faith has seen me through every single step of this Journey...Even when it did not seem  like I had any faith at all...The Faith God has blessed me with is always right there!

So as I prepare for the launch of the 1st year of Play It Forward-Rally to Serve...As I prepare to celebrate with my family, friends, co-workers and community the miracles I have experienced over the past year...I wanted to be wearing a symbol of what this Journey has meant to me...a RENEWED FAITH! 

Faith in myself, Faith in God, Faith in this Journey, Faith in my friends and Faith in ACTION. 

So this bracelet will stay on my arm...hopefully for the long haul!  It will be that gentle reminder that everything is already OK...

So...when I purchased this bracelet today made by came with this card and these words:

"This is for the one who has found her way, and the one who is still searching.  For the one who counts her blessings, and who is a blessing to others.  This is for the dreamer, and the dancer, and the music  maker.  For the one brave enough to jump, and the one still standing on the edge.  This is for the one who takes the path, and for the one who creates her own.  For the one who fights, believes, creates and inspires.  THIS IS FOR  YOU"

I so LOVED this...I shared it with my sweet friend Kerri...and she said this...This is perfectly perfect!!!  She could not have been more correct.

It is perfectly perfect...Just like Faith...Faith that we are exactly where we are supposed to be...even if it is not where we want to be...That we are ALL perfectly Perfect in God's Eyes...and that regardless of the path we take...We are ALL in the protective arms of God and that we ARE LOVED! 

As Saturday rolls around... I am nervous, excited, hopeful, scared...etc...that I am going to do justice to those that have inspired me... so I will have this Faith bracelet in place and ready to remind me that All Glory Goes to God and that all is Perfectly Perfect!

For those of you who have painstakingly read every word of this blog..shared your hearts, tears, laughs and love.

This Is  For You!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Do Unto Others

Less than 3 days away...HAS ANYONE SEEN MY SANITY!!!  On top of being a complete doofas today, I am starting to get performance anxiety!!!  HA!!!

When I sang professionally...I almost ALWAYS got nervous before I took the stage...Even several years into performing...BUT...I will say this...the few times that I was NOT nervous before a performance...I was lousy!!!  So I am hoping that my performance anxiety for this event means that I will be on my to speak!!!

I am really starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel!  Some of the big outstanding issues we had have been resolved!  I have a few million small things to do...but hopefully the big stuff is resolved...PRAYERS PLEASE! 

I  know all of you will be REALLY glad when I move on from this topic...but don't get too comfortable...I will find something else to talk about incessantly...Don't you fret!!!

I find myself thinking that If we can pull this off this our 1st year..that this could become an annual event that really strives to raise awareness about being active, healthy and providing the means for kids who might be a little less fortunate an opportunity to experience the joy of learning, playing and growing in a healthy environment! 

I am hoping that this kind of work is included in my lifelong Journey...not just the short term Journey to Defluff!! 

So...I do hope you will JOIN us!!!  I am going to keep asking until it is over...and then...I will start asking for next year!!!  So...who's IN!!!!

I do want to stray a bit from the topic above.  I am aware that while I am engrossed in this part of my Journey...there are others in my life  that have struggles...dips on their own Life roller coaster. 

I have a friend who is currently experiencing something that is presenting a huge challenge for her...and her sweet family.  I will not disclose the details respect for her privacy. However, I do want to address what she is experiencing. 

I think that sometimes we all take ourselves too seriously...I am the poster child for that!  And at times...we find ourselves in an environment where other's self importance, self-righteousness, etc...begins to have a direct impact on our lives...I am sure that I have even been that imposing person...when I get too caught up in my own world to see how I impact those around me. 

My friend is experiencing a lot of unnecessary pain because of someone else's decisions and actions.  I pray for her and her family that they remember that God is with them in every step of this difficult time...even when it does not feel like it! I hope she can discern from the reality of others and trust the reality that she is a Child of God and loved beyond the capacity of anyone else's judgement or misplaced anger. 

My prayer for her will be that she rely on the strength and courage that she already has inside her and that of her family and a group of friends that truly know her and her heart!  My prayer is that she trusts that God will not leave her and that everything DOES happen for a reason in God's perfect plan.

The lesson in this for context to my this...I must continue to turn my life over to on my faith and truly keep life in perspective.  The reminder for me...always treat others with respect and dignity...Do unto others! are a few more year one pics, sayings..etc..things I love as I continue to recap Year One!!!

My Fall Volleyball girls-Praying!

 My Fall Volleyball girls ALL signed a ball for me!

 Christmas Dog...Oh Christmas Dog
 Jesus Calling passage about Worry!! Thanks Barb!
Another step on this Journey...Reaching another Goal!!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The Lessons of the Journey

4 DAYS...4 DAYS until the Biggest Mini Goal yet....Pulling off a charitable event for the very 1st time.  I am pretty sure that once the fog lifts and the chaos is under control...once the food has been served, the volleyball has  been played and the money donated...This will be one of the  best experiences I have  ever had.  Being able to work with a group of  people that I  love and admire to acheive a goal that is about Giving Back...I know, will be one HUGE Blessing!!

It already is...I am just too stressed to fully grasp the magnitude of the whole thing!

I do know this...This team of people I have assembled amaze me everyday and this Event is going to be fun, exciting and fulfilling. 

I got a cool message  from a former Coach today and she reminded me of something that is very important...It is important to appreciate the Journey...savor it...learn from it yes...but  ENJOY it more!! Here is what she said...

As a coach, you know that I think goals are great and very necessary. However, always remember, "it's all about the journey"! How you get there is SO important. Hearing about your hikes, kayaking and travels lets me know you are enjoying the journey! Keep up the good work, make healthy decisions, take time to smell the flowers but look for the flowers on the other side of the mountain!!! Great job, girl!

I think that is perfectly said!  Thanks Coach!!! 

It is important to have goals...AND if the goal gets in the way of the lessons the Journey teaches...then for me, the best part of the experience is lost. 

SO....I have to let go of the "success" of this event from  a fundraising perspective...and focus on the "success" of this event as a collaborative effort to make a difference, to  connect with our community, to help others, to laugh with kick  off another year of wonderful adventures and to in some small way...mirror the Love that God gives so freely. 

I am proud of this "team"...We are learning, growing, overcoming and sharing our hearts along this Journey within a Journey! 
That IS Success!!!

Of Course...YOU too can still be a part of this is NOT too late!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Looking For an EASY Button

Hi there!!!  We are in the final week of preparations for the Play It Forward-Rally To Serve event...and like anything that requires extensive planning...we are hitting a few bumps in the road...So we are having to fasten our seatbelts and HOLD on....

I hit the panic button about 2 or 3 times a day...I would like to get my hands on one of those EASY Buttons advertised on T.V.  That would be sweet!

Truth be told...I  could use an Easy button for a number of these next 55+ lbs...BUT...there is something to be said for accomplishing something important through hard work, faith and the help of fortifies my soul!!!  Builds my character and is ultimately what gives this Journey so much meaning...If I had an Easy button that worked for could be nice...but I would not be stronger for having it and it would obviously require very little work and limited faith!

So despite hitting the panic button and torturing myself about the details...I would rather work for a solution...grow through my hard work...find strength in others and trust in my Faith...than to push a big RED button...(at least most of the time)...:)

So with less than one week to go...We are having some success with registration for the event and we have gotten through most of the major kinks...with the exception of ONE more big deal that I am hoping we can resolve tomorrow. 

I am SO ready for the fun part though...Seeing old friends, new friends, my family and of course celebrating with this group of people that have worked so hard to make this event a success...My Mom has been a HERO...My sweet Donna and my youngsters Lindsey and Kristen have been amazing and of course..My sweet friend Brig and her amazing family!!!  You guys help me cope and remind me why I am doing this daily...You ALL are the reason this event is even happening!!

Thank you for putting up with me through my stress, mini crisis moments...nuttiness and sheer, unadulterated panic!! 

OK...A bit of Year 2 news...I had an amazing conversation today with Kerri's trainer that I worked with when doing the CLEANSE back at the beginning of the year...He spent time with me on the phone creating a workout/food plan that I am excited about starting...Most of the food plan is pretty similar to what I have been attempting to do for the past year...I just needed a "refresher" conversation!  He really shed some light on a workout plan that feels like a move in the right direction for me! 

I am aware that though I attempt to push myself harder..without a plan..I just come up feeling a bit short of my goals.  So to have a conversation with someone who fully understands what I am trying to accomplish, is really supportive and just as kind as his client who referred me, is an amazing way to kick off Year 2...

I am ready to start right now...

SO....The last week of me FIERCELY promoting PLAY IT FORWARD -RALLY TO least for a while!!!

I hope you will consider joining us...It is going to be RAD!!!

Here are a few more of my favorite pics from the  last year!!!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Day 2 Year 2

Day Two of Year 2 is in the books...Church and a FULL day of getting ready for this CELEBRATION!  ONE WEEK AWAY...

It is a celebration after all...a celebration of a year of miracles...a year of inspiration, a year of awakening from a sickness...It is a celebration of a collection of inspiring moments, kind loving people, hurdles cleared, shared words of wisdom, God moments galore.

It is a celebration of ALL of you!

I am ready to celebrate with you! Celebrate the close of the 1st year and the start of the next stage of this big ole defluffing process!!

I have more goals to reach for...more hurdles to clear...a bunch of LOVE to share...more room to grow and lots to learn.

Actually...I can't wait to be able to put my full effort back into the business of losing weight! After this Celebration is done...all the fun has been had and the volleyball has been played...I can't wait to dive back in...all 200+ pounds of fluff! Back into ALL of it...Back in to being a LOSER!

I am ready for new health and sharing ALL of that with you.

Thank u for all of the sweet "anniversary" messages...Loved each and every one!

Hope to see you Saturday...MUCH LOVE!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

One Year!

Hi there...This is IT....One Year Today...
One year ago today...I got brave...was inspired and was perfectly clear that I was ready to be WELL...Ready to be HAPPY...HEALTHY...AND Ready to put myself out there. Bare my soul...share my guts and lose it! :)

I prayed about my decision and the answer became clear...How do I lose accountable to myself...stick to my plan and open my heart to God's plan.

BLOG ABOUT IT! OF COURSE...Lol...never thought I would be here.

I sent a Facebook message to a group of people that spanned the course of my 45 years...some I had not seen in years...some knew how difficult my life had been for years, some did not...I took a risk that all would have an open mind and heart.

I shared with my closest friends and my family the purpose of my goal...I went for it!!

I started at 6:00 am on a hot Fri. Morning walked one VERY long mile...and it begun!! With my friend friend for 18 years...who has seen me at my worst!
I shared my idea with my youngsters..and were (are) Amazing!

I knew I would need accountability measures in place...everywhere.

I also decided to take to Twitter and step outside of my
comfort zone and share this Journey with my inspiration...Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May Treanor...

I had the strong Faith and love of my Sweet, Amazing Mom! Always!

Everything was in place...I had been inspired for the 1st time in a long damn time! God had taken by both hands and pulled me up and said...It is time Fluffy...Let's do this!!

Over the last year I have lost 65lbs..done two 5Ks...climbed a big granite rock...completed an 8+ mile hike, conquered the Evil Elliptical, climbed a 100 FT sand dune that I am pretty sure is also a volcano. I have Kayaked, biked, run, swam, lifted, climbed, fallen and gotten back up!

I did these things with the amazing support of people ranging in age 11 to 86...
Friends, family, strangers and a 3 time Olympic Gold Medalist.

I have laughed, cried (more than I knew I could), prayed, griped, talked...more than I should...

My body has shrunk, my heart has grown...My relationship with God has blossomed....MY LIFE HAS CHANGED!

I have reconnected with old friends, learned how important my "people" are...I have been blessed my strangers and am proud of the new friendships I have started...all God's blessings.

Next week...I will celebrate with all of you...Giving back to my community in your honor...Friends of The Fluffy Girl and in honor of my precious Mom...Toni Patteson..that is how the donation will given to CY HOPE.

The donation to Good Tidings will be given in Honor of Kerri Lee Walsh Jennings...and her special people...Casey, Joey, Sundance and Scout!

Know this...I am truly blessed by each and every one of you...even if we have never met...or if I see u every day!!

I am ready for year 2...God will see me through..."His Eye is on the Sparrow...I know He watches over me!"

Here I am a year ago.

And here I am today after an 8.5 mile bike ride!

I am learning to trust my heart...not to be afraid to share who I am and what I want become...

A special thanks to those of you that have gone above and beyond.

A. Charlotte
Lo Lo
A. Bobbie
All of my Marys
Laura Jean

And of all you that have sent me encouragings words and prayers...

I love you all!!


Who's ready for year 2....MAWA!!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Belly full of Butterflies!!!

As this event draws closer and closer...I seem to be "growing" a full crop of butterflies in my stomach!!!  Wowza!  I am nervous!  I guess largely because I am trying to pull off something I have never done a very public way...Just like this Journey...

At the time I started this Journey...I thought that playing volleyball front of anyone...would be a big deal...but now...I am not worried about playing volleyball...but in fact, trying to get a whole bunch of people to play volleyball and raise money doing it!!  Though I will say this...I am proud of this team I have assembled...We are working very hard to make this event a success AND my "team" is working very hard to invest in "Me and my Vision"...not always an easy job.

I am also proud that we have taken a small goal.. (me...playing VB again) and turned it into something bigger..something that has the potential to pay (or PLAY) forward all of the amazing love and support I have received in the last 12 months. 

So as always...PLEASE...keep this entire Journey in your prayers...Great things happen when one or more gather in HIS name!!!  I want to share that!!!

So...tomorrow is the beginning....OF YEAR 2!  So...I am STILL adjusting to the fact that this "year long journey" in fact, going to a be YEARS long journey...BUT strangely, I am kinda excited about continuing this process...looking ahead toward the possibilities of another year of dedicating myself to a better life...a better me! 

Here are a few more "Flashback Moments"

This was a gift from Emily and Harper...and a perfect depiction of how I felt "starting" this process!

Me and Em...the weekend I tried Kayaking for the 1st time!!!

My sad, sad very RED face after my 1st 3 mile walk!!!!

MY KNEE...after my very 1st 3 mile walk!!!!

Getting better!!!! Less tomato...more smiles!!!

The MAWA Inspired 1st 5K for The Houston Food Bank!!!  I finished and NOT in last place!!!

Always battling with drinking arch nemesis!!
Everyday of this Journey has been Amazing...even the days that feel like defeat...because I have discovered that I can rise above the defeat and when I do that...IT IS A VICTORY!!! 
See you tomorrow!!!!!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Reliving the 1st year! A Recap!

Hello to all!!!  I am two days away from one year on this Journey!  Wow!!!  It seems surreal...Over the next few days...I have decided to recap the last year over the next few days.

It has been a remarkable 1st year and after I the Rally To Serve event is complete and in the books, I am looking forward to losing the rest of this weight...getting healthier...striving to be med free, striving to share this Journey with all of you, with my family, my friends (old and new) and I look forward to the continuation of this Miracle.  I pray that the next year of this Journey will be a mirror of God's Love and His blessings. 

Before I get into my recap...Today Is Kerri Walsh Jennings birthday!!!  A National Holiday in my world..:))

I have sent her a private message; however, I want to wish her a Happy Birthday here...It seems appropriate since she has served as a spark for this Journey...a conduit of God's Grace and just an absolute Joy.  I truly am blessed that our paths crossed as they have and that I have an opportunity to share this Journey with her.  So Happy Birthday Kerri!!!  You completely and totally rock!  My thanks to your parents for bringing such an amazing human being into this world!!!  :))  Here's a hug!!

So Now to the recap!!!  Let It Begin..These thoughts and pics are just a mere glimpse at the past year...Some of my faves!!!
The JOURNEY BEGINS August 17th 2012.

"The winds of Change are Blowing Wild and Free, You ain't seen nothing like me yet"~Bob Dylan
I have already had to retire these shoes...and that headband is in the Journey 120 archives...LOL!
 I hope that you will follow along and enjoy my journey. I hope you will laugh with me, pray with me and WILL me to a better, healthier life. I need it!!!!

Tomorrow is the DAY...the new beginning of what I hope is a life-changing journey. I am excited and nervous. Excited about making a change and nervous about....making a change. Funny but true! an effort to give a warm send off to my old eating any good, loyal Fluffy girl would do...I ATE! I had one last unhealthy Hurrah!!! 

 Harper and Emily...helping with the GIANT ECLAIR
You are going to see a phrase or "slogan" I guess you could say...that I am choosing to use as a daily reminder of my original fun inspiration to make this change.. Misty May and Kerri Walsh used the hash tag or team name #Mawa during the Olympics...I have "borrowed" that and added it to my little motivational slogan: #Journey 120-"Mawa Inspired"

" So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we summon the WILL, they soon become inevitable"~ Christopher Reeve
Here is to the Inevitable....
so I sent a tweet to Kerri today (again...) asking her to check out my blog and the start of my Journey 120-"MaWa" inspired adventure. Now I must say Twitter is a very limiting tool for a girl like me...a girl who has very little capacity to keep her thoughts to 140 words or less...I am probably the only person on the Earth that will spend 30 minutes trying to make something concise...but I did! So I had crafted what I had hoped was a well worded, to the point statement that might get a response from her...and guess what..I tweeted and asked her to check it out and she responded...just 2 words... Will do! I was goofy excited!! I am such a dork! But I was thrilled!
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
–Albert Einstein
I know this is the first week and and that there are 51 more to go...but so far..I think this is the best decision I have ever made. Journey 120-"MaWa" Inspired!!!!
So...that is just a taste of the total recap...over the next several days...I plan to share more of my favorite, quotes and joys from this Journey...
Please remember that we are less than 2 weeks away from an event that will mark ONE YEAR on this Journey..It is going to be a celebration and another Mini-Goal along the bigger Journey...I will play volleyball AND have an opportunity to give back to my local community and will be donating to Good Tidings Foundation in honor of Kerri! 
I hope I get to see you there!!  Much love to all of you and again, Happy Birthday Kerri! xoxo!!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Taking things In Stride

To be or Not to be...honest!  I am sitting in a bit of a stupor...I am wanting to tell my story about my day...the truth. But as I sit here...I am acutely aware that my truth is laced with disappointment and anger.
I firmly believe in honesty...even when it is uncomfortable...but telling my "truth" may not always represent everyone else's truth!!

So as I sit here REALLY wanting to vent my frustration about something I am experiencing...I know that spewing my "truth" not necessary...telling everyone here that I am frustrated and dissapointed is plenty of honesty...

I don't wear disapointment well!  It reads on my face and in my voice with so clearly...and when disapointment is joined with any other emotion....things can get ugly!

So I am sitting here...refusing to let my disappointment rule my head and my heart...praying for the strength to turn this challenge and seemingly big hurdle over to God. 

I can do this...with God's help! There is no hurdle that can't be overcome...even with my short legs...I just have to take this in stride...

Have you ever watched a great hurdler run a race?   They do not "jump",over the hurdles...but instead have a beautiful, fluid stride that propels them over the hurdle gracefully!! If that stride is broken and they react by jumping the hurdle...they often trip and fall.

I am a jumper by nature...reactive to the glide in the know what I am sayin'!

From the beginning of this Journey, I have prayed for Grace....receiving God's grace and living that same grace... Sharing that with others!

So I am a work progress...I still have quite a way to go!  Trying not to jump...

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Time Flies When You Are Losing Fluff


Seriously...I am one fraction of a step from either laughing hysterically or sobbing...Hopefully...I can go to sleep before either happens..though I certainly choose laughing if it happens!
So tonight...Donna, Brigette, Lindsey, Kristen, Mom and I met at the facility that has been kind enough to donate a great gym facility for our event...Willowbrook Sports Complex.  We did a "planning" tour hopes of getting all of our questions answered so that we can be prepared for set up in less than 2 weeks!!!! AHHHHH!!!  Thank God...I am surrounded by smart people!  Everyone asked good questions and I think we are pretty clear about what needs to be done next!!! 
I am excited about this event!  I have a lot of emotional investment in it!  I really want it to be a mirror of the kind of amazing blessings I have experienced in the last year and I want it to model..good healthy, active fun...Something I am really working to make a "habit" in my life! 
As most of you know...I have really tried to create an enviroment for this weight loss Journey that includes fun adventures...physical challenges and the potential for big accomplishment amid the daily grind of trying to lose weight!
Truly, if I just got up everyday...counted calories, walked in circles around my neighborhood did the same gym routine everyday...I don't think I would have stayed as dedicated!  Even though the benefits of living a healthier life probably should be incentive enough...Having these me something to work for inside the greater goal!!! 
So this event is one of those mini-goals...with maximum effort!  But it truly is like a snapshot of this whole process for me...Having a goal, surrounding myself with people to keep me focused on the task and then further "invite" others to help me accomplish the goal by being involved reading this blog..or following along on social media...or just listening to my story in a chance meeting...ALL roles are essential to my success and my HOPE is that I can GIVE that back with this event...I want people to "see" with their own eyes...what this Journey has been about and will continue to be about for the rest of my days.
So this EVENT is a culmination of my 1st year of living longer...of being happier...of celebrating ALL of those people who have invested even ONE moment of their valuable time in my Journey! 
I hope you will consider being a that I can thank you personally for your dedication! 
August 17th will be ONE YEAR!!! I can't believe it...Time Flies When You are Losing Fluff!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Learning is Growing!!!

The clock is ticking...our Event is 2 weeks away...We got quite a bit accomplished over the weekend...and there is lots more to do!!  We have had some great news today...The Backyard Grill is supplying the brisket for our event!!! YAY...that was one of our biggest expenses to take care of for the event!!  Thank you Backyard Grill!!!

Such a relief!  All of us are working hard on the event....My Team!!! You know who you are!!!  We all have stretched through our discomfort...made long drives...long meetings...and we still have 2 weeks plus the event to go!  I am proud of this team!  They have jumped in and worked hard to make this very 1st Play It Forward-Rally to Serve Event a success!!!

Having said that...We need others to help!  We need volunteers for our event and we still need donations!  I had someone say to me that folks with charitable organizations can be really persistent, even insistent.  I fully understand that and it is true...However, I have a new found respect for people who choose to put their heart and soul into helping others...raising money, planning events and organizing fundraisers...It is hard work...BUT...I also understand WHY they do it!!  It is worth it! 
I think that this is a part of God's whole plan for my Journey and I just have to trust that it will provide and bless those (including those of us planning, organizing and hosting the event) that we are serving!!!  I know I am better for the experience!  Learning is Growing!!!!

I ask for your prayers for all of us and for those we are working to support! 

We are going to have a great time...I do hope that if you are and can be in the area that you will join us! 

I am attaching a few random pics...some of us working on the silent auction last night...dinner, and me riding a bike with a long streamer of toilet paper in tow...Yep...that happened!!!  :)) I even included a sneak peek of one of our auction items!!!

 Linda and Brig
 Sneak Peek!!!

Me...Bike Ride...Toilet Paper...The Winner!!!!