Saturday, February 27, 2010

one week and counting

thoughts on this week:
1. I am okay.
2. I can handle a week of high stress.
3. I love teachers convention.
4. it was really great running into some old friends.
5. I am happy that our new house now has a roof and windows.

6. ty is the only one in this house that loves my pumpkin muffins as much as I do.
7. I threw a perfectly good cupcake in the garbage today.
8. I was down 2.8 today.
9. I really wish my belly liked quinoa.
10. the things I do with my life have an impact - I can choose if it's good or bad.
11. I like seeing my name on my door every morning.

12. I really like that one of my kids went to starbucks for me at lunch the other day.

13. I am so thankful that the days are getting longer. I can roll up to school at 7:15 and it's light already!

14. I think the olympics have rocked this year. and yes, I am biased. GO CANADA!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

when the night feels my song

so, today is my official first day of no dairy, no red meat. I have been easing myself in this week, however. can't do the whole "cold-turkey" thing. plus, I needed to use up my pricy, yet tasty, goats cheese! I did discover something today [unfortunately for my diet]. peeps are dairy free. full of sugar, but dairy free. this, my friends, is a bad, bad thing. at only 28 calories per peep, and totally fat-free, that is 0 points. bad, bad peeps. on the other hand, I've been cooking more. and today I found a recipe for a mediterranean pizza that is dairy free [crust by scratch] that I think I am going to try making next weekend. I can be this girl.

I think if this lenten season proves anything, it will be the importance of living with intention. I am re-discovering the necessity for reading labels and assessing what I can eat or not eat. this week I am going to focus on trying some new recipes - something with quinoa, if I can manage it. and maybe next week I'll spend some time being introspective about my hunger [as in, is it mental hunger or is it stomach hunger...that takes some post-report card time, not to be done pre-report card!]. I also want to be down 2 lbs this week. I know this is going to mean really tracking and remaining conscious throughout my stress. I can do this. I need to do this. for me, for my family, for my health. good riddance already. dean mentioned an important point in church today - that lent is to help steer us back on course. one or two degrees off doesn't make an initial difference, but over time it can pull things right off track. I need to be back on track. course plotted. intention set.

Friday, February 19, 2010


I am so thankful for my sweet husband. he is kind and caring. and he really is my anchor when my day has been seriously insane. I get to come home to a peaceful place every night. and for this, I am truly thankful.

[I edited this photo with my iPhone using the camerabag filter "1962". love the retro/shaft look!]

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


so we have some walls. and for this I am thankful! [we're on the LH side]

Monday, February 15, 2010

there is a plan...

so after posting last night, I got word that the kids at church will be doing a giving chart thingy over lent - which is something John & I can do with the kids. problem solved! in addition, today I bought groceries that will support me as I phase into a no-dairy plan. I have pumpkin muffins in the oven and am excited to start transitioning into this lent season this week. [yes, I am giving myself a week to transition - no "cold turkey" over here!!].

in other news, canada is having the party of her life over in vancouver and I am loving all the olympic action that we get on the ol' telly. I had a moment when the anthem was played tonight at the medal celebration tonight. alexandre bilodeau. I'll be wearing my canada t-shirt tomorrow.

sigh. I think I may just head to bed and tape all the tv I "need" to watch tonight. too tired to think.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

things are changing around here

I started my last post with a bit of a personal rant on my self. starting today, things are changing around here. and I am going to do these changes in honour of lent. here's a link to some wiki intel on the whole lent thing. not all people who practice lent are christians, nor do all christians celebrate lent. I however, have never had strong feelings about lent either way. I didn't grow up with this tradition and I've never been super strict about it when I did decide to join in the excitement! this year is going to be a bit different. I've done some reading and have discovered some of the symbolism behind the tradition - it's about renewed vigour in three areas: prayer [justice towards God], fasting [justice towards self] and almsgiving [justice towards neighbour]. so this is what I am taking on, as of this week. I am choosing to fast from a couple of significant things - dairy [excluding eggs] and red meat. I am choosing these two things for a couple of reasons - I think I have some intolerance towards both of these food groups and need to just do this to feel better, but I also need to be this extreme to detox my system from all the things that are causing me to feel sluggish - mainly all the sugar and high-sugar carbs that I eat daily. the no-dairy thing will get rid of many options in my eating. and, it's my life philosophy to go big or go home. so I'm going big.

then there are the other parts - prayer and giving. I am making a plan in that department and will keep you posted. I am toying with a thankfulness journal for my prayer implementation. and the giving part is eluding me right now.

regardless, I am hoping that all of this has an impact on my body, but more importantly, on my soul. I need to honour my creator and be grateful for the life I get to live. and it starts here. for the next 6 weeks.

although I know darn well that I cannot commit to blogging the whole time, I know that this will be my thankfulness forum.

join me?

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

let's make that selfless love...

...not sacrificial love. they are close, but not the same. still having the same issues, but hey, I'll work through them! I was having a bit of a talk with myself as I was straightening my hair tonight. [yes, new hobby. as a lifer on the curly hair circuit, it's time well spent...I GET TO HAVE STRAIGHT HAIR!!!!] I am sucking the life out of my happiness, with my loathing, "edmonton-in-february" blues. and in the words of some 80's hair band, "we're not going to take it anymore". I am done with my bad attitude. for real this time. time to get this fat arse off the couch and start moving and taking care of myself. how, you may wonder, does this even relate to my issues of having to talk in church on sunday? well my thought was this: if I can't love myself in a selfless manner [wow, deep.], then how can I love anyone else with any measure of selflessness? just a heads up, I am coming from an extraordinarily christian perspective as I write. be offended if it makes you feel better, or just take it for what it is - my theological perspective on something I know very little about. bottom line, christian or not, feel free to engage me in conversation on this topic. I'd love the feedback.

so, I am going to go to the lovely "frayer" model, as we call it in social studies. I'll give you a definition, an example and a non-example. then we'll talk synonyms.

I started by going to the ever trusty and got this as a definition: having little or no concern for oneself, esp. with regard to fame, position, money, etc.; unselfish. there is a little scripture in the bible that reminds me of a story that I heard in sunday school - of a hen gathering her chicks under her wing during a barn fire and giving her life for her chicks [matthew 23:37 reminded me of this story]. like I said in my last post - the "put yourself in front of the moving bus" kind of love. these, in my opinion, would be an example of selfless love. a love that has no concern for oneself. an unselfish love. this example is one that transcends culture and time. the story of ultimate sacrifice. the giving of one's life for another. and, there are nothing wrong with these stories. they exemplify the divine. philippians 2:6-8 says this:

6Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
7but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

selfless love is divine. well then how the heck am I suppose to get even close with my wee efforts in love?? oh, and I found this just a few verses ahead that drove the point home for me just a bit: "do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. each of you should look not only to your own interests but also to the interests of others." very interesting, considering my non-example coming right...NOW!

let's get to the non-example. I am going to be really vague here, because I don't have a clue who reads this. and it is a true story. when push comes to shove, it's about not loving a child for reasons of personal pride, all in the name of the same divine who chose to love me so much that he was "obedient to death" on my behalf. there are stories everywhere of personal pride and selfishness that so invade a person's heart that they cannot love in anyway that remotely mimics selflessness.

so in all this I come back to a series of words: selfish, proud, justified, egotistical, prejudice, self-centered. and a series of words that describe the woman I would like to become: selfless, humble, non-judgmental, giving, including, christ-centered. if selfless love is a picture of the divine, then I want be a mom, a sister, a daughter, a wife, a friend who exemplifies this not just under extraordinary circumstances, but in ordinary, daily existence.

and in this, I'll tell you a story about my dad, one that I will tell at his funeral [hopefully 25+ years from now!]. I remember being about 13 or 14 years old and my dad and I had a HUGE fight in the car on the way home from somewhere. we were driving south on st albert trail and there was a huge sign on the corner across the trail from the old dairy queen [if you're old-school st albert, you know where I'm talking about!]. he swore it said "yard sale". I swore it said "garage sale". and we had a HUGE fight about it. needless to say, by the time we got home, he was yelling at me, I was yelling back. doors were slammed and feet were stomped. I went to my room and cried. about an hour later, my dad knocked on my bedroom door and asked to come in. and he apologized for his behaviour. he owned his part and said sorry. and in that moment, I learned a valuable lesson - as an adult, you can put away your need for "being right" and "winning the fight" with your crazy 14 year old daughter and just be selfless in the ordinary daily existence that is our lives. he put aside his pride and ego and just made things right and in that moment, showed me what selfless love looks like when it's in human relationships.

it's in those moments where ego and pride are shelved, and your child comes to you broken and alone. it's in those moments where selfless acts are done in secret as to protect a friends reputation. it's in those moment where we choose to do the right thing and defend a sibling without thought of retaliation. it's taking the time to love as christ loves us. unconditionally. no strings attached.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

sacrificial love

I need to talk in church on sunday about this topic. I'm not too sure if I even know anything about it. yeah, there are the stories of the parent who puts their life ahead of their child; we get versions of this story through email spam on a regular basis. I need something else. I need something me. when it's personal, or needs to be personal, I have a hard time coming up with an example. sheesh. HELP ME!!!! as of right now, I am teeming with non-examples, and stories of how pride gets in the way of sacrificial love. how personal agendas and preservation of a life we think we have gets in the way of truly loving others. maybe I need to keep my mind on that angle and not on the whole "my sister's keeper" angle. when I get the whole mess done, I'll post it.