My Big Life Change!

Picture taken by Abby Austin of 1000 Miles on my own two feet.


To transform my life, with God's help of course, one step at a time.

1. Get healthy & honor God with my body

Created by MyFitnessPal - Free Calorie Counter

2.Become at least 50% sustainable with emphasis on doing our part to take care of God's planet.

3. Live life as an adventure, experiencing new places, things & people.
18 out of 150 bucket list goals accomplished

4. Become debt free & build security for my family, so we can then bless others financially also.

5. Continue to grow closer to God, building My family's faith & sharing the Gospel with those we meet, by using the talents and gifts God has provided us.

6.Continue to make money by creating and sharing my thoughts and beliefs through artistic expression: all the while hoping that my art will impact others. "Holly Kennedy

: All I know is, if you don't figure out this something, you'll just stay ordinary, and it doesn't matter if it's a work of art, or a taco, or a pair of socks! Just create something... new, and there it is, and it's you, out in the world, outside of you, and you can look at it, or hear it, or read it, or feel it... and you know a little more about... you. A little bit more than anyone else does... Does that make any sense at all?" Quote from PS I LOVE YOU

Monday, January 31, 2011

Catch and cradle

A couple of years ago one my dear friends invited me to a Women of Faith Conference. I was wowed at all the great music and speakers. I got to hear Steven Curtis Chapman sing and give testimony about losing one of his daughters and how that impacted his family and life. The lady who played Blair on the Facts of  Life was their and we got to hear her testimony. But the biggest impact on me that weekend came from a speaker named Marcus Buckingham. Marcus has written a few books and has even been on the Oprah show, talking about successful people and how to become one of them. Marcus's job was to research, find and interview the most successful and happiest people from certain companies and figure out what makes them so good at their jobs; so the company could train others to be better at their jobs. I thought what a cool job. He then took this same concept and looked at Women in general, and wrote a book about it called Find your Strongest Life.

Marcus gives many tools in this book on how to be successful, but the most mind blowing technique is called the catch and cradle. First he gives lots of statistics on how it is nearly impossible to do two or more things at once, well. You can drive and talk on the cell phone at the same time but you aren't going to be driving well or paying much attention to the person on the phone. Now this just bothered me. I had always thought that I was good at multi tasking. I have never had a job that didn't require that of me. In fact it is something they look for in interviews and will not hire you for if you aren't good at it. So when he said that the successful women that he interviewed were not multi taskers I was shocked. He explained that the happiest and most successful women were good at catching what ever moment they were in and cradling it. At the conference he told a story about a women that he was at a business function with. And he said that she was fa away from home and during a business dinner this lady excused herself and went outside for about 15 minutes. The same time the next day she did the same thing and this time he followed her out there. Much to his surprise he found her singing into the telephone. When she was finished he politely asked her what she was doing and she said that when she is away from her kids she always sings them to sleep over the phone. No matter where she was or what she was doing. She was cradling the moment.
Now looking back at the story; I think of how many times I rush through important moments in life to get to something that isn't important. Or talk on the phone and watch TV or play on the internet at the same time.  I wonder what I am missing by not cradling these moments. I noticed last night when I spoke with my best friend of 12 years that I didn't play on the internet or do anything but talk to her. I realized that I was cradling this moment with her because she lived so far away and we don't get to talk often. When is it that we go from cherishing simple moments to barely noticing them. My new years resolution is to catch and cradle more moments with my daughter and husband, family and friends. In church and in public. I know that if I were to do this then I will accomplish more of what God wants me to do. After all doesn't He catch us when we fall and cradle us in times of trouble? 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Psalms 6

"O Lord, don't rebuke me in your anger or discipline me in your rage. Have compassion on me, Lord, for I am weak. Heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony. I am sick at heart. How long, O Lord, until you restore me? Return, O Lord,  and rescue me. Save me because of your unfailing love. For the dead do not remember you. Who can praise you from the grave? I am worn out from my sobbing. All night I flood my bed with weeping, drenching it with my tears, My vision is blurred by grief; my eyes are worn out because of all my enemies. Go away, all you who do evil, for the Lord has heard my weeping. The Lord has heard my plea; the Lord will answer mt prayer. May all my enemies be disgraced and terrified. May they suddenly turn back in shame. "

The Psalms teach me how to pray. This is what I read this morning and although I am not weeping like David, my soul longs to be restored. Do these verses mean anything to you? Are you in agony or pain. Come to Him in prayer.

Lord I pray for those who are hurting physically, may they run to you and find comfort and healing. I  also pray for the hurting hearts, may they run to you and find peace and comfort. For those who have been running from you and are surrounded with their sins and enemies, may they take whatever path, no matter how low and dark that leads them to you. I know you can restore hearts minds and bodies. I know that our enemies are your enemies, and although they hurt us, may we find forgiveness and love for even them. Thank you GOd for healing our hearts, minds and bodies. thank you for your words to me today. May I use them with your guidence to bring your Love and grace to others. Amen

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Smelly trash

So as I am sitting here with my baby asleep in my arms, I am thinking what should I write about? I decide that writing isn't going to happen if i don't free up my arms. So I gently place my baby in her crib, turn on the little heater in her room and plug my nose as I walk past the trash can with the poopy diapers in it. Why didn't I take it out? Well we don't have trash service. We have 2 trash cans but no company to pick it up. And since I filled the trash cans last week and John has taken them to his work to empty them, I can't put them out. Oh don't feel sorry for me. I am ashamed to admit that the company that provided their service to us for awhile didn't recieve payment, so they stopped coming. Alas, it is my fault. You see one of the twelve steps is coming out of denial. Denying that I was a victim, that we just couldn't come up with the money. If I am truely honest, buying things and not being able to pay for them is a bad habit I used to have. Like thinking that I will make the payments and come up with the money, but when it is time to pay the piper I come up randomly short. Well no more I say. We have finally finished Financial Peace University and now it's time to pay the Piper so to speak. We are on baby step one gather your 1000.00 emergency fund.

We had started on the emergency fund and had the car break down, funny enough it was exactly 1000.00. I find this ironic that we would have been okay if we had our emergency fund. Once this is done, it might take awhile, we start our debt snowball. This means we pay off every debt that we owe. We can truely call ourselves debt free, when this is done. The third step for us is to gather 3 to 6 months of emergency money, so we will be okay if a big emergency happens. It might take years, it might take months, but we will get this debt paid off.

I have to admit that this financial adventure has gotten me closer to the trash man. Huh, you may say! The big trash man in the sky! God is the only one who can take our trash and haul it off. Leaving us clean and fresh smelling when all the rottenness is gone. Then once we are empty of the trash, he fills us up with His son and the Holy Spirit. Blogging is like my trash recepticle.  After all how are we to get rid of this filth if we don't own up to it. There are many places that you can empty your trash in, church, Celebrate Recovery, and accountability partners are just a few of mine. Where do you empty your garbage? I would love to hear from you.

Thank you God for taking this smelly trash and for making me new. I want to be filled with your holiness and spirit. May I only breathe out your word and clean thoughts. Help me to bring you glory in my home and in my life.

Monday, January 24, 2011


 Last week John was sick and stayed at home from work. John never plays hookie. He rarely stays home when he is sick. Since it was Wednesday and I had a vehicle, I decided to finally take those 4 boxes of old sippycups, clothes, and baby stuff down to my favorite charity. I happened to facebook the lady who runs it and found out that they weren't open. Well I must admit I was very dissappointed. Since my car has been in the shop for over a month now and we were waiting on the money to fix it, I rarely have access to a car. I have been stuck in the house for a while. So, not being able to get that junk out of my house, when I had a car, upset me. So there are 4 boxes on my table still waiting to go to their new home. This morning, after a 20 minute search, I could not find her straw cup. So I dig out the spare and filled that one. 30 minutes ago I spent 20 minutes again, now looking for the second cup. I don't know how she did it, but both of them are missing. I am sure that tomorrow they will creep back up in plain sight, but I cannot find them. So freaking out I am trying to figure how I am going to get milk into my very thirsty daughter and I happen to look at the table. There was a box full of sippy cups. If I had taken all of those cups to donation, I would still be wondering how to get milk down my daughters throat, or worse, feeding her from a regular cup (can you say disaster).

This makes me think of the many inconvienences that go on each day, that undoubtably happen for a reason. How many times has God saved us from a disaster by putting a boulder or storm in our way? In Celebrate Recovery, we hear all the time from people that say them going to jail was what saved their life. Waiting on the Lord can mean five minutes or a lifetime. Sometimes its easier to give over big things to God, but not little ones. After all, its about control. We something is overwhelming or too big for us, we tend to finally give God the reins. But, when we are waiting on a job or are looking for our keys we assume that we are on our own. Since God the father of all universe can command the Earth into existance, I think he can handle my little problem. I know that when I surrender that one thing to Him, he will give me peace that surpasses all understanding. I don't know about you, but that sounds good to me. I heard a story about a lady who prayed before she hung a picture on a wall. Her neighbor saw her doing this and laughed. "Why are you doing that?", he asked. "God doesn't care about where you hang your pictures?" She calmly replied. "Well when I used to decorate the house, I would get very stressed out. I couldn't decide what color to paint or where to hang a picture. I would drive everyone around me crazy and finally be so worn out that I would never get anything done. If I did make a decision, I would wonder everyday if I should have done something else. Finally, I realized that this was something that I couldn't do on my own. So everytime I need to decorate, I pray about it. I hang the picture and move on."  Now that's PEACE! Can you imagine how much time we waste worrying? God is waiting on us to give it over to Him, so he can solve the problem in His way and His time. SO next time I am fretting about something and worrying, I hope that you will help me remember that God has the answer in the box on the table.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Walking on Eggshells!

My eggshell party was fun. Some how God always gives me what I need, not more or less, but the right amount. I am always amazed when not many people show up to my adventure parties. In my head it is going to be a huge blow out party and everyone is having so much fun that they never wanna go home. Well, my old self(pre-Celebrate Recovery days), would have been disappointed. But I am so truely happy! If everything turned out how I wanted it to it would be a disaster. I mean who really enjoys having hundreds of people around? I am a crowd-a-phobic! If people stayed too long, I would pass out from exhaustion. Because true me, spends the day before an adventure or party cleaning like mad and tring to get everything ready. And I am plum worn out afterwards. The cleaning started yesterday morning and ended about 9:30 last night. I made a 10:00 run to Walmart and got my last supplies and groceries. Made coffee cake last night so it could be ready for breakfast. My husband had to work today so I wanted him to get some of the breakfast treats.
Today I got up when my Joslyn alarm woke me up around 6:30. We went back to bed (like normal) and played, trying to wake daddy up but he was snoozing pretty hard. So after about 20 minutes, we got up and let the dogs out. I set out to making the rest of my dishes. Quiche Lorraine, is a pretty way of saying eggs with bacon, swiss cheese and onions. YUM! Spinich Quiche was next, made with ricotta and Parmesan cheeses. Then I made Hashbrown Casserole, which is a staple at our house. We had cantalope and honeydew, always good to have a little fresh fruit at a brunch. Lastly, I made a ham egg and cheese pizza. I didn't think the pizza turned out very good.
While I was cooking the bacon, Joslyn had a major blowout diaper which called for a bath. Thank goodness my wonderful other half was around to help with that! After the diaper clean-up and the bath, he feed Joslyn breakfast, so I could concentrate on cooking. I am so lucky to have him and sometimes I take that for granted. Gotta work on that!

So all the food got done and I had barely used a dozen eggs. We had purchased 4 dozen for the eggshells to walk on. And me as a food addict, we will get to that later, couldn't stand the thought of wasting the eggs. So I decided to hard boil the eggs. So my friends pull in just in time. My friend Toni and her daughter Shannon and her two adorable kids Sam and Jimmy came from the city. Becky and Diana came too! So there we were 5 adults and 3 kids. We ate the spread, it was well worth the wait until 11:00 to eat breakfast! After eating we spent sometime talking and peeling hard boiled eggs. Once we had a good amount, we placed a cheap tablecloth on the livingroom floor and set out the broken eggshells in a line.

So here comes the truth! Walking on eggshells in real life is nothing like doing it figuratively. I thought it would be more painful! After all, when I look back at my childhood and see the major damage physically and emotionally that I had from walking on eggshells all the time; it can't compare. I remember sitting at home having to be quiet and feeling like I would rather runaway or die then to feel like this. My home, growing up wasn't always bad, but there were too many moments when I couldn't be myself. I think that kids that grow up in toxic environments will spend most of their lives searching for who they are. Working with youth for awhile, I have noticed a few things. Most people know that teenage years are when kids find their identity. Most teenagers will try on a few different "hats" or identities, searching for who they are. This is why having kids in church and youth programs is so important.
I remember struggling with trying to find myself and if it weren't for my church group and my supportive mom, I would have suceeded in suicide.
I know this is tough stuff, but I wonder how many teens are out there in toxic situations? Look anywhere on the news and you will see the hurting teenagers. Suicides, pregnancies, bullying. These are classic signs of kids who are walking on eggshells everyday and finally they can't do it anymore. SO they run to ....?

I think its the same for adults who live with abusers. Whether it's physical, emotional, verbal, sexual, etc...  Living a nightmare day to day, walking on eggshells. It makes me so sad. God is the only one who can heal those hurts. If you are walking on eggshells everyday, please consider the long term costs. Call me, visit a Celebrate Recovery all over the world, join a support group. God will ease the pain and use your situation to help others, he did with me.

One thing I can say for sure is it feels so good to be walking on solid ground again!