Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I conquered, I panicked, I cheated, I started, and I finished

I conquered:
I am a chicken. Plain and simple! Scary things and I do not mix. Scary things such as riding down a frozen mountainside with two pieces of wood strapped to my feet. Or with both my feet strapped to the same piece of wood. Or like going to the swimming pool and throwing yourself off of building sized platforms into the water. Why would anyone to do that? And I’ve never understood the desire to put myself in a bathing suit (scary enough on its own) and climb a bazillion flights of stairs, only to throw myself onto a wet slide and send myself to my death (okay I probably wouldn’t die, but still….). Seriously, you can ask Liana, my best friend of 22 years, and she will tell you what a wimp I was growing up. We would go to our favorite pool which had a regular diving board and a high dive (although I have since been educated by Mike that what I consider the high board, is not the high board, but whatever. For my story, it’s the high board). I would go up and down the ladder of the high board probably about 20 times until the life guard would finally yell at me and I’d throw myself off the end in embarrassment – yes I would usually scream on the 2 second drop as well.

Well one of the biggest things I’ve always been terrified of – water parks. I’ve never felt super comfortable in the water, and for some reason water parks bring up some big fears. My brother and sister in law invited us to go with them to 7 Peaks on Saturday and guess what; I went on just about ALL the rides!!! Including three of the scariest, tallest, fastest, straight down, weggie givin’ rides they had!!!! This was a HUGE moment for me! My brother took videos of it and you will totally crack up at the screaming! Seriously, when I went down “Free Fall” (could that name be worse?) I screamed so loud that everyone on top thought someone had been hurt and ran to the side to see what happened! Hahahaha. Anyway, it was way fun, and I can’t believe I let all those silly fears stop me from doing something so fun for so long! Watch for a post to come with pics and videos soon!

I panicked:
So I’ve been going along this week, working out this intuitive eating, and I am finding it hard to not panic. I have either not cared, or restricted myself for so long, I realize that my ideas of food are really out of whack. Also, my worth in relation to food is really out of whack. My goodness, from all my posts, why would anyone try this?! Haha. Really don’t judge it off of me. Or maybe do, I don’t know! :D So the panic keeps creeping in as I realize I’m not eating well, and I can feel my clothes just a little tighter than they were. But then I have to keep reminding myself that this week I am focusing on my hunger signals, and that’s all. I’m not making any judgments about my food choices – I don’t have to do that anymore. There is no bad food and good food. There is just food. I do recognize that some food will have much more nutritional value and I honestly and truly believe if I can just stick with this, and not panic, and run away, that my body, heart, and mind will naturally start to gravitate to those foods. I have noticed a large decline in my water intake, and my fruits and veggies. So I am setting a very loose guideline that I get in at least a fruit or veggie with every meal. That doesn’t mean I’ll limit what else I eat, jut that I’ll try to have both. Also, that I at least get in my 8 glasses of water so I stay hydrated. I read an awesome post today from Honoring Health about the first few weeks of doing this (and why people bail), and that made me feel better. Because it’s really hard to distinguish the difference between not restricting yourself, while at the same time listening to what your body wants, not judging that choice, and yet having all these other ideas of food in your head from all the different diets I’ve done over the years. My goodness, I’m just a babbling fool lately!

I cheated:
Because of the whole panicking thing, I cheated yesterday and got on the scale. I’m sorry. I was home alone and it just would not leave me alone. Seriously, it just followed me all over the house calling my name – it was kind of creepy really. I mean who is this scale to think it’s so important that it can have that kind of power over me? But actually, it turned out to be a good thing. Not because the number was what I was hoping for, or because I was down, or because it validated my value as a human being, etc. It was good because amidst my panicking, I had talked myself into thinking that I had gained tons of weight and that I shouldn’t be doing this and that this is all a bunch of hooey. But guess what, that was that little devil, or what Geneen Roth calls the Voice. It was LYING to me. I really hate when people lie. So that stupid voice, it was lying, and I had been listening to the garbage it was telling me. But now… I know what it really was. And getting on the scale was just the feedback I needed to snap me back to reality.

Now I do recognize two things could have potentially gone wrong with getting on the scale – one, I could have been up as much as I was expecting which possibly could have validated my panic and sent me into a further tail spin. I prepared myself for that. I was prepared to be with my body, to be in the moment, to go through those feelings, to see what it looked like and what it all meant. But I didn’t have to deal with that. What I hadn’t prepared myself for was “Wow, I haven’t gained any weight!! Yeah!! Hmm… guess that means I can just keep eating”. Luckily, I was aware in the moment I had that thought, and was able to put a stop to it right in its tracks!!! It’s true that yes, I can keep eating – when my body is hungry!! (Which was not the intent behind that first thought!) Overall, I’m glad I cheated. It’s calmed me down and taken me out of panic mode. I feel better prepared to trust myself, and will do my very best to not get on it again until the 20th.

I started:
So guess who came for a visit! Aunt Flow! It has been a year since she and I have visited, and I have to be honest – I didn’t miss her!! But… it is comforting to know that my body is working still, just on its own schedule. Also it wasn’t lost on me that it happened just as I made this switch to trusting my body and myself. Interesting!

I finished:
I finished Geneen Roth’s Women Food and God book (and I think I can finally remember the title. I kept getting the name all mixed up). Whew. This is a book I will need to read about 3-4 times before I really understand all that I read. It is very deep, so if you decide to read it, be ready for that. Also be ready for some swearing (not a ton, but if you’re like me and not accustomed to any, then even a little can be shocking). Overall, I loved the book. Loved the principles. And am excited to love myself again! So, if you were to ask me, “Should I read this book”? The answer would be yes, I think everyone should read this book. Even if you’re not really into the intuitive eating idea, and even though her ideas on God are a little different, I still think you would find value. Because everyone, no matter what diet they are or are not on, could benefit from learning how to listen to their hunger signals, how to recognize and challenge their “Voice” (those demon thoughts we all seem to have about ourselves), and how to be able to overcome overeating by being with our feelings instead of stuffing them with their food.

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Saturday, August 28, 2010

Accepting Who We Are

"The answer for me is acceptance. I don't need to CHANGE who I am, I need to learn to LOVE who I am. I need to accept myself, everything about myself and honestly be okay with it. I need to do this unapologetically and without guilt."

Wow, does that not just hit you right between the eyes (and heart)? It does to me! I can't even remember how long it's been that I've felt the need to apologize for who I am. So often in prayer I beg that some day I'll be worthy of the blessings I have. Whose to say I'm not? I know that Satan definitely wants me to think that I'm unworthy, unloved, and alone. And even though I had amazing parents who always have loved me and made it known, and have a husband that is lavious and verbal with his love, I still have felt that way. I know that past experiences through out my life have also given me those feelings. That I am less than, that I always need to be sorry for who I am, what I said, what I did. So often I feel the need to apologize for things that I have no control over, that really have nothing to do with me. This year has been all about change. And I am not saying that's bad. I feel like I've come so far this year. But I think I'm just realizing that it's not really that I've been changing per say, more that I've been defining who I really am and finally accepting myself. This step into the intuitive eating world is just a part of that.

So speaking of accepting myself, and to another point, others and who they are. I've had the thought that perhaps some of my readers are not really interested in intuitive eating. That they will no longer be interested in following my blog. I say this, not to... make anyone feel bad or guilty. On the contrary, I say this to acknowledge your feelings and to let you know, it's okay. Of course I hope you'll stick with me. I hope that we can continue to learn from each other and that we can find value in all kinds of ways of not only losing weight, but of coming to true acceptance of ourselves. But if you feel that this is not really something you are interested in, then that's okay. I'll miss you, but I understand. I've kind of had this pressing down on me and I just needed to put it out there for you, and for me. And if there is no one feeling that way, then great!

Yesterday I successfully ate breakfast and lunch by listening to my body's hunger signals. I stopped eating when I was satisfied and it felt great. It never ceases to amaze how good that feels. How empowering it is to know that I fed my body, and nothing else. Even when doing WW, I always felt amazed when I accomplished that. Dinner did not go so well. My blood sugar dropped as I was out and about, so by the time I came home, I ate way too much and totally ignored the STOP sign! Then we had dinner as well. Then I fell asleep into a "I ate too much" coma. The rest of the evening I physically felt terrible, mentally tired, and yet... I wanted to eat more. And did.

This morning I woke up and knew that I needed to spend some time with that. I wanted to know what happened. Why it happened. Etc. I'm still trying to understand this whole process and to do it, but not force it. That's tricky. I find that I want to direct my feelings, I want to label them. But, the idea is to let your body tell you what's really going on. Not to really label, but to feel them, let them be, accept them with kindness and love, and then they will dissipate. Sounds kind of phewy (yes, that's a word, that I just made up, that means... "sounds like craziness, what in the heck are you talking about Sam?". Get it? Good!). It's okay if you don't get it, because like I said, I don't get it yet either, but I'm trying anyway.

I sat on the couch this morning in the complete quiet except for the melodic wind blowing through the aspens in my yard and feeling the warmth of the sun on my back and just felt. I felt my body, felt the feelings from last night. Tried to see what they are and what they are doing. I feel like it was successful and I know I'm not really explaining it right. But I'll tell you this, it was peaceful. I feel peaceful. And what I kind of came to is that I've been really angry with myself for gaining weight back (just like I have every other time). I've been really fearful of the future for my weight loss, that I would just let it all slip away. Fearful to really commit to this lifestyle and what if it doesn't work and maybe I should just do it half way, or just stop being silly and go back to WW. As I sat with those feelings and tried to be kind to them and not judge them I realized that of course I feel that way. My past experiences have taught me to feel that way. But this isn't the past, this is now. And just because that happened in the past does not mean that it has to happen this time too, that is just a story I have told myself. That I always have to do what I have always done. No I don't! Or that this way of living is not going to make me a free person from self cruelty and extra weight. That too, is a story. I think it's a protection mechanism, because what I am embarking on is very scary. I kind of liken it to wearing boxers or shorts with no underwear. Haha. Have you ever done that? You feel all venerable and like you're just flapping in the wind with no protection. That is how I feel. Haha, sorry for the image! :D

I loved that quote at the top of my post, because I think no matter what plan you are on or not on, it still applies to everyone. We need to be more loving, accepting, and forgiving of ourselves. Today, I was able to do that, and it feels wonderful. How about you? What can you do today to love and accept yourself?

 
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Intuitive Eating Thoughts

Can I just tell you how hard it is to listen to your body while not letting your head get involved? Hard!!! Anne, you weren’t kidding! Haha, okay I’ve been doing it for 1 ½ day, and whew, I’ve got my work cut out for me! I still haven’t finished reading the book yet, so I need to do that, and then I need to read it again I think. I want to make sure I have clear ideas of what I’m trying to accomplish. Also, I was thinking I should find some blogs of people who are doing the whole “Intuitive Eating” – so if you have any suggestions of who I should check out that would be great!

I have a couple of fears in doing this. One is that I won’t be able to and then I’ll really feel like a failure. I have to just recognize that it’s just something that I am going to try out and if it doesn’t work, that’s okay; I’ll go back to WW. I am committing to myself to do it for at least a month. If it’s going pretty well (and the scale will not be the only judge of whether it’s going well or not), then I will commit to doing it to the end of the year. And then I’ll look at things again in January. I don’t want to hop from thing to thing, as then nothing gets accomplished. But I am finding that by saying I’m only going to do it for a certain amount of time, it kind of frees up the fear of not being able to change my mind.

Here is the thing with WW, I KNOW that if I follow plan, I will lose weight. I don’t know that with this. I have a strong hope that it will work. This is scarier for me though, because with WW I just follow the plan and hold tight to it, like a railing, and it works. But with this, there is no railing. Just me. That is scary. How do you learn to trust yourself after years of not doing it? I’m not sure there is really a learning curve, I think it’s just a “Jump in and do” type of situation. And probably a “fall flat on your face” situation as well… a couple of times… but then… after getting back up over and over maybe I’ll start to crawl in the right direction, then get up on my wobbly feet and take a few steps. Before I know it, I’ll be running so fast I’ll get to take off in flight! :) Cheesy I know, but as you know, that’s my specialty! :D

So the thing I’ve been struggling with already, is how to know when it’s really my body telling me I want something, or when it’s just because I want it. As I typed that I thought, “Oh duh Sam, just ask yourself if you’re hungry”! I’ve been so worried about what I’m eating, I totally forgot about when I’m eating (well not totally forgot, but I haven’t been giving it as much focus). Maybe I should focus on the when first? I've restricted myself for so long it's really difficult to just, not. She does say in the book that a part of this is giving yourself the freedom to really eat whatever it is your body wants. In the beginning she ate cookie dough for like 2-3 weeks. While I don’t see myself doing that, I do see that if I just listen to my hunger signs first and not worry so much about what I’m eating, that would be a good start. I think in the beginning I can see myself probably not making the best food choices, but that by allowing myself (spirit and body) to see that really there is no forbidden foods, they will eventually lose their appeal and I still to actually crave the foods that give me real energy. See what I mean I haven’t thought this all out. As much as possible, I’m going to do that on here. I think (and hope) that will be helpful for people deciding if this is for them or not. I’ll be the test dummy (don’t get any ideas!).

The other part of this is the spiritual side. I’m not talking about religion, although that certainly plays its part, but about spirituality. The relationship between self and spirit, and spirit to God (I just made that up, so if it doesn’t make sense, I guess you’ll just have to trust that I know what I mean. Haha). Taking the time to be aware of my feelings, and then being willing to dig under those feelings to find what’s causing them. And then being willing to swim through past experiences and all that can bring up, to then move myself to a point to be able to let it go. And the theory is that by feeling it, it’s basically like validating those feelings which then allows them to dissipate, thus relieving the pressure to stuff them with food.

Well there it is, some of my initial thoughts as I head down this path. It will be interesting to see how that changes as I go.

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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Big Changes!

There is this story I use to tell my young women (from church) that goes like this (it's been a long time, so bear with me):


Our lives are like a little cottage. We have this image and design of who we think we are and what we should look like. We take that little cottage and do our best to take care of it. We plant a beautiful rose garden, we tenderly grow ivy up the side. Inside we decorate it and make it homey, safe, and comfortable. And one day, this builder comes along and says, "I see great potential here, can I help you with your cottage?" We say yes, and before we know it, our little cottage seems to be in shambles. The roof is ripped off, and walls are knocked down, our little flower garden seems trampled and everything we have worked so hard to make beautiful seems to be in ruins. As we lement what was, we don't really see the big picture of what's happening. We don't see the strong pillars going up, the beautiful new gardens - complete with water fountains. We noticed when they knocked out big holes in the wall - it hurt! We didn't notice that what filled the holes were beautiful colorful stainglass windows. When the builder was finished, he asked us, "What do you think"? As we step back and look at ourselves, we realize that we are no longer a little safe cottage. We have become a beautiful castle (or temple, as the case may be)!

If you haven't guessed, the builder is our Father in heaven. He allows us to go through trials and hard things, not because he doesn't love us, but because he does. He knows that it's only through those things that we can truly become who he knows we can be. This whole year has been about breaking down what's not working in my life, and rebuilding it with the Lord's help to bring me happiness and joy. This journey is so much more than losing weight, that's only a part of it. If you've read the last couple of posts, you know I've been going through some demolishon this last month. :) I'm not done, I still have far to go. But I think I'm ready to start doing a little rebuilding.

First off, I put in my 2 weeks yesterday. I had another opportunity present itself, and I felt like it was the right time to move (as did Mike). My last day at Stampin' Up! will be September 3rd, and I will begin working at Mozy on September 7th. This is a big leap of faith for me. As I've said in the past, I love my job at Stampin' Up!. I love the company and am really excited about the direction they are going! I love my demonstrators, and really and truly, that was the worst part about making this decision. Was knowing that I wouldn't get to talk to them day in and day out. I won't get to be a part of their business and to see them succeed from the inside. I do hope that the friendships I have made with them will last and that I will still get to cheer them on from the sidelines! I will be doing tech support for the customers of Mozy. Although it's an entry position, I will be making more money which will help greatly! And I fully expect there to be new opportunities to move up through the company, and eventually to be in a position to again be a kind of coach. I want to be challenged, to grow, to learn new things, to meet new people, and to have new experiences. I'm VERY excited!

Secondly, I'm not going to be doing Weight Watchers anymore. This has been a real struggle in making this decision as well. Anne, you have all rights to say "I told you so" at this point. :) Through many different experiences I have had lately, I feel like it's time for me to go about my weight loss differently, and to focus more on the spirit and then let the body follow. I've been reading Women, God, and Food. It has really changed how I view this journey. The book is not the only reason I'm making these changes, but it has given me the guidelines I'll need to do what I really feel prompted to do. This will be so challenging, scary, and different. For those of you not familiar with the book, the basic idea is that you don't need to follow a diet. That if you listen to your body (NOT your mind) that you will know what and how much to eat. I haven't really... ever... trusted my body or myself. How sad is that? I trust people in my life all the time. Family, friends, co-workers, people driving next to me, but have never been able to fully trust me. I feel like I'm on a precipce and am about to dive headlong. But as I said, I really feel that this is the direction I'm suppose to go. I haven't thought out all the details of this yet but I'm starting now and will figure it out along the way. I'm sure I'll be talking about this more soon.

Third, I'm changing my over all goal. I'm keeping it to 100lbs, that is still the ultimate goal! But, I'm adjusting my timeline. I'd like to be down 60lbs (from January) by the end of December. I'm not exactly sure how much that really is for me to lose, as I still have not stepped on a scale since the 20th. :)  But I think that if I lose around 6lbs a month, I'll be able to do that. But I guess this is really where the trust and faith come in - both in myself, and that the Lord will help me stay on the straight and narrow.

And fourth, and lastly, I had set my sights on running a 10k in December. But Mike wants to run one at the end of September, and I am going to do it with him. This is a BIG challenge for me, and I probably won't be ready to run the entire thing. But I know I can do it and I am excited to get training. I'm still sticking to my no plan - plan for exercise. So I won't be setting a training schedule. I'm just going to try and get in at least 2-3 jogs a week. I feel really excited about this and am ready for the challenge!

As you can see, big changes! This is definitley not the turn that I expected to have right now, but it feels right. I feel peaceful about it, and am ready to jump with both feet. While those knocked down walls were very painful, I know there is purpose in all things and I am ready to learn those lessons.

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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

This Frog Ain't Boiled Yet!

So I told myself and you that I wasn’t going to let that +8.2lbs get to me. But I did. It did, it got to me. I fell apart over the weekend and ate everything in sight and when all of that was gone, I went in search of things that weren’t in sight. While it was an awesome weekend because Mike did his first triathlon (watch for pics to come soon) and I was (and still am) SOOOO proud of him, it was not a great weekend for me personally. I have worked very hard to change my habits over the last 8 months, to change my heart, mind, and body. This weekend I fell back into some old habits, I’m not proud of that. So then of course comes the guilt, frustration, self-loathing, and regret. Which leads to… excusing myself to more eating. Sunday, I started to snap out of it. I still ate too much, but I was starting to recognize what was going on and that I didn’t want to let it continue. Let’s be honest though, it’s been going on for longer than this week. I’ve been in this place for about a month. This time it snuck up on me over the space of three weeks. It was like the frog in boiling water. Have you heard that?
If you put a frog in boiling water, he will jump right out! But if you put him in cold water and slowly increase the heat he won’t notice and will stay to his doom. Luckily, I don’t think I’m quite to that point. I’ve spent a considerable amount of time this weekend contemplating my life, the decisions that I’ve made, decisions to be made in the future, and what this really is all about.

I really did not come up with any great reasons why it started. Really, I think I just got complacent. I stopped tracking. The battery in my food scale died, so I stopped weighing. I stopped measuring my food. I stopped counting my veggies. I stopped. And then began. I began justifying splurges and treats. I began listening to my head, instead of my body when it came to hunger. I began to love food for the taste instead of what it's intended for, nutrition and to give me energy. I became reacquainted with that stuffed full feeling. The one in which I hate, and yet, I'm so comfortable there. I started feeding my emotions. And... ta da - boiled frog!

So now I've lost my momentum. I've lost really any chance I had at losing 100lbs in 2010, because honestly, it would be really unhealthy for me to lose about 64lbs (probably more because I've probably gained more weight) in four months. So, I'm left asking that famous question, what now?


Can I just say: AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHa;sdlkfj!@@#JLSafjoasr8t09u4tjgwofgj. (yes, I was very angry and felt the need to yell and hit my keyboard)
Okay, I'm done throwing my temper tantrum.

But... I. Am. Not. Done!

I'm not giving up. Yes, I'm super frustrated, I feel stuck and just... blah. But I am going to figure this out. I am going to push through this and be stronger for it all. Every single time I've come up against a speed bump in my life, when I've allowed myself to go through it, I can look back and know why. I can see the lesson that had to be learned, and I pray this will be no different. It's time for some changes. I know what you're thinking, but let me re-assure you, I'm not looking for the quick fix. There have been some things happening along with all this other stuff that seem to be guiding me in new directions. Still with the same purpose, I'll just be getting there a little differently then I thought. I'll be posting all of that tomorrow, so stay tuned.

And remember how I said I don't want comfort?  I do need it. I do need your encouragement. Your faith. Your friendship. I think I was just afraid of not being to handle it. Thank you for all you do, for sticking with me. I do want you to hold me accountable for my actions. I haven't left a ton of comments lately, but PLEASE know that I read your blogs and I am inspired. I read your about your successes and wins and they give me hope that I can do this and I shouldn't give up. Thanks!

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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Choices, Not Numbers

+8.2lbs

Yep, you read it right, I weighed in tonight for the first time in 3 weeks at Weight Watchers and I'm up 8.2lbs. Uhhh......

Have you been there? Duh Sam, we've all been there. I've been here before, probably will be here again. That's not the real question, the real question is... So what now (you've probably noticed, I like that question)? What are you going to do about it?

Sulk? Nope.

Eat? Nope - well, not inappropriately at least.

Take it out on Mike and pick a fight about something I'm all hot and bothered about (but really I'm just mad at myself)? Nope.

Cry? Maybe. I didn't tonight, but I think that crying is an acceptable option.

Hope that people will feel sorry for me and try to comfort me? Nope. In fact, to be honest, I hope you don't. I made my choices. I need to live with the consequences. I'm reading Women, Food, and God, and one of the points she makes is that you need to allow yourself to just feel a feeling. Don't try and run from it, or stuff it with food. You are not going to die if you feel sad. Or if you feel ashamed and angry. I am willing to sit with these feelings and to process this, but I need to ask that you don't join in. So not to be rude, but please don't try to comfort. (Yes, this is a protection mechanism, I know. Not entirely healthy, but I just don't think I could handle the questions like "Why do you think you struggle so much" or "Why is it so hard for you". I know those are meant well, but please don't ask them.) Thank you.

Acknowledge that I know exactly why I gained that 8.2lbs? Yep.

Acknowledge that it's up to me to choose whether this will be a real speed bump or just a surface one? Yep. I could let this derail me. I could use it as an excuse to eat away my sorrows and weaknesses tonight. Or, I could... not.

Exercise? Resounding YES! I need to burn some steam. I need to sweat. I need to be alone with my thoughts. I need to analyze and feel the pain. And I need to let it go! That's what happens when I run.

I knew when I went in, I was up. I've felt it for a week now. I feel it in my clothes, I feel it in my energy level. And I feel it in my heart. But you know, despite the fact that it's a big number, and it sucks. Yes, it sucks. I'm actually okay with it? The last three weeks I've learned a LOT about myself. From the ah ha moments I posted about in the Proof is in the Pudding, to lessons about forgiving others, relying on the Lord when something is too heavy for me to carry, and knowing that the Lord needs me. Big big lessons learned. And I guess, if the price of those lessons was that I had to have this set back - well it's a price I'm willing to pay.

The other truth about it as I mentioned above, I know exactly why and how this happened. I know what choices I made that led to this, I know. And I am not going to dwell on the fact that I messed up. It is what it is. But the awesome thing? It's not permanent. I can fix it. I can change it. I can make better choices. I can have success and continue to lose weight. I can be who ever I want to be.

Lindsey over at Prior Fat Girl received a challenge to give up the scale and tape measure for a month. To write down what she eats, and how many calories are burned in a day, then to let it go. Not to dwell on the numbers. I was thinking about this on the way home from WW as my leader had said at one point that for a real lifestyle change, this has to be about the choices you make, not the numbers. Not the numbers on the scale, or the tape measure. Yes, those are important feedback, but... they cannot be the end all, be all. Because in the end, that is not what keeps the fat off. It's the lifestyle you get to enjoy and the habits you have made. There is so much more to my journey. The stuff that adds so much more meaning, depth, and discovery to my life. So while I'm not going to stop weighing in completely, I am going to go numberless for a month. I am going to have Mike take the scale to work. I've spoken before about the fact that I feel I have a healthy relationship with the scale - I still feel that way. But I also am recognizing that in the last month, it has become way too much about the number. I am still going to go and weigh in at WW, but I'm going to work it out so someone keeps my book for me and I won't know.

I'm really working on being aware as previously mentioned. Aware of my thoughts, feelings, words, and what I eat. I would like to add listening to my body more. Listening to my energy level, the way my clothes fit, they way the foods I eat effects my moods, etc. I think this is the perfect challenge to go along with that.

My mini goal I was working toward was to lose 17lbs by Mike's birthday. I'm going to have to put that goal on hold. I would now need to lose more than would be healthy to do that, and I'm not going to push myself just so that I could feel like I failed. So I'm changing it to going scaleless from Aug 20-Sept 20. Also, I want to go on the Above and Beyond Hike at the end of September. This is a hike I have wanted to do for years but have never been healthy enough. It is a 13 mile hike that goes over 7 mountain peaks. I'm going to do it.

A part of any hard journey, is falling down sometimes. And the real test is whether you get back up or not. I'm getting back up folks, I'm getting back up.


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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Have You Ever...

Push Play

*Tried a different grocrey store than the one you normally go to? Try it! You will start seeing all sorts of different foods you never noticed before!

*Told someone how much you've lost and been so proud and at the same time kind of embarrassed?
*Eaten so much food in one sitting that you literally thought about trying to throw it up to escape that feeling?
*Have you ever put a piece of clothing on and thought "People like me don't wear things like this" and then wore it anyway?
*Wanted to binge, but instead, chose to exercise?
*Wanted to binge, and did it?
*Allowed yourself to really dream? And dream big?
*Had the perfect eating day?
*Smiled at a stranger and looked them in the eye?
*Believed your husband (or significant other) when they told you how beautiful you are?
*Thought to yourself "You know, I think I can actually do this"?
*Achieved a goal, even a small one?
*Allowed yourself to get swallowed up in the pain and hurt, and allowed it to take over?
*Dared to do something risky, something new, something you didn't know if you could do - just to find out that you could do it?
*Ran so fast you practically flew, and you just knew that although your heart may burst -you just don't want to stop because you never knew you could feel this good?


If you said yes to any of these, then you and I are on an amazing journey together!! Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!
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Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Proof is in the Pudding

Yesterday I mentioned that I'm on a low point in my journey. I've been struggling against emotional eating and in myself. Because of the yucky eating, I haven't felt good. I've felt lethargic and tired. I hadn't realized how good I was feeling, until it was gone. Yesterday I was kind of feeling like I had lost everything I had worked so hard for. After posting about my struggles, I got up and cleaned the rest of the house. That feels SO good, you know how that really affects my mental state. Then, as I came back here to check comments (which I am totally addicted to. And while I'm on the subject, can I just say thank you for all the kind thoughts yesterday, they really meant a LOT to me!!!) I watched 266's Anniversary post. If you haven't seen this, you need to go watch it! It was so moving and just made me realize how bad I really do want this. How I know I'm going to have to fight for it... still... and how I am going to do just that. I went and put on my running clothes and in the middle of the day went out and jogged two miles straight. No stopping to walk. Granted it was just barely above a walk - it was that slow. But still... I did it. And it helped me realize I have not lost everything. Because you better believe at the beginning of this journey, I could barely come up my basement stairs, let alone jog 2 miles straight. It helped me to feel a lot better about myself and about things.

I started analyzing what happened, how I got off track. About two weeks ago, some big things happened. Some were emotional and hurtful and I don't want to dwell on them. So yes, that played it's part. But the other part was that I started thinking "I need a plan. I need to kick start things again, re-dedicate and motivate myself". So I started thinking of how I could do that. I immediately went back to what I've done in the past - to do a no sweets/fast food for 30 days. And to have an exercise plan. You know what I mean right? I'm going to do such and such on these days, and I'm going to do this on this day and blah blah blah. Well, without even realizing what was happening, all this "planning" had me thinking things like "I'd better eat this doughnut, because I won't get to for a long time". Oh and "I'd better have a burger and fries (and don't forget the fry sauce!) because I won't get them for a while either". And I just stopped working out, because the "plan" hadn't gone into affect yet, and I was waiting for the "plan". Yesterday I had some real eye opening ah-ha moments about myself.

I do need a plan. But... there needs to be some limits to the amount of "planning". When I try and regulate myself way too much, then it just doesn't work. I recently posted a comment on my good friend, Anne's blog. And I still agree with those comments. But I also see the benefit and strength in going off of what feels intuitive for your body, and I do it more often than I realized. I liken it to living the Law of Moses and the Gospel that Christ taught when he was on the earth. Both were meant to bring about the same thing. One was just super in the details, and the other was more about the spirit of the law - which actually can be harder. I think it's a good thing I was born now, and not during the time of Moses, because I think I would have really struggled with that way of living. And the same thing happens when I try to give myself all these strict laws. I can't do it. So I rebel, and then I feel like I gave up (which I did) and that I'm a failure (which I'm not) and that I can't do this (which is SO not true). As I look back over this year, I realize that for the most part I have been living the by the spirit of the law. I have followed WW for eating, which has given me some guidelines. I do need some guidelines, because honestly, I'm an addict. I'm addicted to food. Hello, my name is Sam and I have a food addiction. So the guidelines help keep me on track. But they don't really limit me. I'm allowed to have treats, I'm allowed to eat out, I'm allowed to enjoy food. I haven't had any kind of plan for exercise. I have just known that I want to do it, therefore, I did it. And, each day, I would do what I wanted to do on that day. Not because it was organized or appointed, but because it sounded fun. I'm finally acknowledging that that kind of living works for me. I think it's something that I could do for the rest of my life. The problem was that I gave into the panic of "I have to do this now because...". The truth? The truth is I don't have to do anything. That is just Satan's way of thinking and I allowed it in. Silly me. :)

So, what has come from all this? I'm bagging the idea of a workout plan. I'm just going to work out when I can and when I want to. And what I want to. I'm going to tighten up on my WW guidelines. Yesterday I bought a new cookbook (with a birthday gift card from the president of my work, love that Stampin' Up - thanks Shelli!)- the really big massive one put out by WW. I'm so excited to dig in and try some new recipes. That to me brings the food part back to life - makes it exciting! And I'm going to focus on being in tune with my body, thoughts, and words more often. I want to be more aware of what I eat and how much, I want to take more care about what I think about myself and others, and I want to be more thoughtful in what I say to others. In how I treat them, and in being a better friend. So there you have it, my not plan "plan". :) I feel really good about this. For the first time in almost a month, I feel like I'm back on my journey and going in the right direction.

This morning I got a little curious about how much I've really changed. I feel the changes on the inside. I'm a different person than I was 8 months ago. But I was also wondering about my appearance. So I pulled out some pictures and did a comparison. While the difference really does thrill me, I am so much more grateful for the spiritual and personal growth that I've had! And for the friends I've made along the way. Thank you to all of you, you are very near and dear to my heart!!


Oh, and Willow wanted to share her progress too!!


 
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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Forget Yourself

I've not been a great place the last two weeks. I've given up on my healthy eating about 1/2-3/4 the time, and on the exercise. I've been overly emotional, a little hormonal, and 100% selfish. I've focused on me me me and allowed myself to be swallowed up by the heaviness of my feelings. Things happened, and things were said that hurt me and frustrated me, and rather than processing those and letting them go, I let them send me into a tailspin of pain, doubt, anger, and a lot of eating. This weekend I've been doing a lot of thinking on how I can overcome this and move forward. Although I've lost some of my momentum of good things in my life, I haven't lost it all - and I don't want to. As I was surfing my usual blogs, I came across Dawne's post from It's My Time. It broke my heart and gave me a huge wake up call that my life is easy. I mean really, I do not have much I should be complaining about. That's not to say that I don't have real trials in my life. I do. Or that my feelings don't matter. They do. But the difference is that I'm allowing them to take over and hurt myself, and those around me - and that is not okay. The only thing that dwelling over these things has done, is make it ten times worse, then it really is. Nothing good ever comes from dwelling.

So..... It's time to move on. I've said my prayer, asked that these hurt feelings be taken and that I'll be able to do what I need to, to be able to get past this. I have to be honest, I'm at a very low point in my health journey. I can feel the difference of eating bad for two weeks, and it will be a challenge to get back to where I was. But I will do it.

As I work my way back, I plan to focus outward on others. Serving those that I love, serving people I don't know, and doing what I can to make this world a better place. I think too often, I focus on me and that has got to stop. I think the Lord knows that and has been trying to open my eyes. Finally, they are open. And we'll see what the future brings!

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Friday, August 13, 2010

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Outdoor Adventure 10 for 2010

(This really wasn't number 10, but I'm behind, so I'm just saying it's 10. Just had to put this in for my own record. :D)

Yesterday was an awesome day!! Liana and I hiked 11.4 miles!! WOW!!! A couple of weeks ago, we hiked to dog lake. It's about a 2.5 mile hike in and the same out. We got to take Willow with us and play in the little lake, it was really fun. Here is a video of us trying to get her to go in the water and swim. She was pretty hesitant about it. But she really wanted that stick! :) I thought it was a great analogy how there was this one stick she wanted, but because of her fear, she kept going for lesser smaller sticks that were easy to get. How many of us do that? Settle for something less than what we really want, because it's easy. Something to ponder. :)




So from there, there is another lake you can hike to, called Desolation Lake. When we were in high school, Liana and I tried to hike it with a buddy of ours and almost died! One, we were SO out of shape. Two we hardly took any water with us. Kind of funny really. Anyway, we've always wanted to go back and yesterday, we did.

There are two trails up to dog lake, one that is shorter but steeper, and one that is longer but a little more steady in the rise. We went with the longer one, which was 3.1 miles to dog lake. We cooked it up that and made it in just over an hour. Then it was on to Desolation lake which was another 2.6 miles. This is where things got tough. Right after leaving dog lake you descend for .5 of a mile. That wasn't too bad - but I KNEW that coming back up it was going to kill me. At the bottom of that .5 you take a small turn left and start going up. And up. And up. And up!!! Finally it leveled out and wasn't too bad. But oh my goodness, can we say BEAUTIFUL!!!!! There were so many open meadows we went through and it was just gorgeous. The flowers are out in spades and we even saw a deer.





We finally got to desolation lake and it was so clear and divine! Liana said she has wanted to come here since she was 12, so this was a life long dream coming to pass. I was just happy she would finally let me sit down! :)

Here is Liana fulfilling her long time dream! Congrats babe!

After we found a rock to sit on and ate our lunches, it was time to head back. The journey back wasn't too bad really, except for two parts. One, that .5 descend I mentioned - well I was right - on the way up it, I almost died! Seriously, I almost died!!! Haha. My leg muscles were all cramping up on me and I could hardly breath. It was the longest longest longest .5 I've ever walked! About 1/2 way I thought, I'm not going to make it. And then I thought, YES I am!!! I started thinking positive affirmations about myself and my muscles. I know it's cheesy, but it was really the only reason I made it too the top. And it really did make a difference to get my focus off the pain in my legs - which was severe - and focus on my strength, power, determination, and dedication. It was a tiring, but very awesome experience! The only other problem was that on the last leg from dog lake was that our feet really started to hurt. Mine felt like they were raw and all the skin had been rubbed off.

All in all, it was the best hike ever and I'm so glad I went! I did a lot of thinking, praying, and listening. Liana and I also did a lot of talking about all things in life. I love that we've been friends for like 22 or 23 years, and yet we can still talk four about 4 hours straight. Oh yeah, and I wore my heart monitor watch and so I know that I burned 3,332 calories!!!! Woo hoo!! I do plan to turn these pics into scrap pages, but it probably won't happen soon, so I wanted to share some of the pictures now. Enjoy! :)

Desolation Lake

Dog Lake

This poodle dog we met along the way had dreads, it was too funny!


I can do hard things!!

Don't let this freak you out, but some of the leaves were turning colors!! AHHH!

We did it!!!! Whew!! Nap time! :)






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Friday, August 6, 2010

Breath, Just Breath

Inhale 2, 3, 4, 5.... and let it go 2, 3, 4, 5. Doesn't that feel good? I seriously needed that. I've had a rough week. I've made bad decisions. Some of those decisions went from bad to worse. I think I'm having a non-period, so I'm all sorts of hormonal (what is this you ask? Well, it's a period without the bleeding. :D I swear, it's a real thing (although I don't really know if it is or not). I get all the normal side affects, I just don't have an actual period - I should look it up). Which leads to eating, munching, and I'll say it... binging. This week I began something amazing and that will change my life (which I'll tell you about in a minute), but I know that Satan doesn't want me to do it, so he has been working double time on me this week. And that worse decision I mentioned? It's because I gave into those temptations. Because of my diet this week (diet as in what I ate, not as in a "diet") made it so that I was lethargic and exhausted, and didn't exercise. So all of that combined led to a huge fight with a loved one, in which I instigated. And to top it all off, I made a big choice last week, and this week, I did not get the outcome I had hoped for. My demonstrators will not like reading this, but last week I applied for a new position at work. I didn't get it. So I feel frustrated, rejected, and a little downhearted. Oh yeah, and my pride is hurt, so what am I doing? Throwing a pity party. Okay, so there it is. All my reasons, all my excuses, all my rationalizations, and all my BS. Did you buy it? Neither do I! However, excuses or not - there is some real stuff here that I need to process and let go of.

It's been a while since I really let myself down, but this week, I totally did. And tomorrow, I'm going to pay for it. Liana and I are going for a 10 mile hike and it's going to kick my butt. The last time I ate horribly and hiked, it was HARD. So I expect tomorrow to do me in. But I'm going to do it anyway.

So.... Let me break a few of these things down. Mostly, I'm doing this to help myself process these thoughts, feelings, and experiences. I need to get past this. So, if you want to come along for the ride, I'd love the company. :) Just maybe I'll help someone going through this too.

Being hormonal flat out sucks. There is just no getting around that! The one good thing about actually having a period, at least you know what's going on. You can prepare yourself for it and take steps to manage it. For me, 1/2 the time I don't realize what's going on until it's been about 4 days. Case and point - this week! But... I have always been a believer that you do not get to use your hormones as an excuse to be a witch on wheels or rather, a broom. So... if I have hurt any one's feelings this week - and I know I have - I truly apologize. To the person I fought with, I'm so so so sorry (don't worry, I also apologized in person, numerous times). And now that I recognize whats going on, I'm going to work on being aware of it and manage it.

The really great thing that has Satan at my back? In my church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints, the members handle all of the administration and teaching. So we are given what are called callings. Every Sunday I teach in the primary and Mike works with the young men. Well we were recently given another calling that is very special. We were asked to work one day a week in one of our temples. This is such a privilege and we are really excited about it. We will be at the Jordan River temple on Tuesday evenings. So this week we had our orientation to learn about our responsibilities. It was a great experience. As mentioned, Satan has been working hard on me and the whole day before we went I was feeling awful. I kept having thoughts that I didn't want to go or do it. I even misplaced my temple recommend (a piece of paper that admits me into the temple). But... finally everything was settled and I was there. And it was quiet. And peaceful. And reverent. And really the only good thing that came out of this week. At one point there was a woman speaking to us and she bore her testimony of God and Christ. And how she felt inadequate to do what the Lord had asked her to do (ever feel like that? I do, almost daily) and her husband said something to her that I just loved. He said "With Christ, you can do anything". Isn't that powerful. I was so touched by the spirit, my heart filled with it. I instantly felt His love for me, His strength, His peace. I knew that He loves me, I felt of His happiness at the path I'm on, and His desire for me to continue and that He will help me. And continue I shall, in spite of this hiccup this week.

And lastly, the job. You know, I really debated about whether or not I should apply for it or not. It was a ssupervisor position over the team I am currently on.The truth is I love what I do. But I do want to grow, make more money, and have a bigger impact. It was a really really really hard decision. Especially because it wasn't just about me. I had to make sure that I was doing the right thing for yes, myself as an individual, but also for our family, for my demonstrators, and for my co-workers. In the last hour right before my interview, I finally decided that I was going through with it. I nailed the interview! Then we waited.... these things always take time, right? Every day, practically every hour, I would think, "Did I do the right thing"? And sometimes the answer was yes. And sometimes it was no. By the time I received the call today to speak with the manager, I was so tied in knots, I didn't know what way was up. As I walked in the room, I knew. I knew I didn't get it. And I also knew that it was the Lord's will and that the right person was chosen. Doesn't mean it didn't hurt, or that I didn't feel rejected. Or that my pride (stupid pride) won't need some time. So for now, I move onward and upward. I work through the emotions, I do what I need to to support the new supervisor, and look for other ways to have impact and to grow.

Well, the truth of it all? I sold out this week. I let other things matter more than my health and my goals. I hurt loved ones, I let myself down, and maybe even you. At this point, all I can do is ask for forgiveness. From those I hurt, from myself, and from you. The hardest is myself, we're always the hardest on ourselves. I wonder why that is? Maybe it's because we know. Deep down, we know we could have done better. We could have managed our feelings better. We could have thought before we spoke. Or before we raised the food to our mouths. And we didn't. Well, this life is about making mistakes and learning, right? Well apparently I needed lots of lessons this week. :)

Thanks for listening, sorry for the downer post. I'm going to sign off and go clean my house. That always makes things brighter! And then, I'm going to go hiking in the morning and burn off all the extra calories, and some steam. Hopefully I'll find some perspective on that beautiful mountain and get to share it with you tomorrow. Have a good night!

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Thursday, August 5, 2010

A Gift for You!

You may need to click on the image to read the text. Thanks! :)


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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Nincompoop!

That’s what I feel like after yesterday, a nincompoop!

You know, I have had an awesome July! It’s been so busy with so many fun things. We have done a lot outside (probably won’t be until this winter before you’ll get to see the pictures! :D), had some great little trips, had an amazing Stampin’ Up! Convention and got to see my lovely demonstrators! I also did really well with my eating and exercise. I’ve been running farther and a tiny bit faster than I ever thought possible. I got a heart monitor watch for my b-day that I just love! I have consistently lost weight and even eventually hit that mini goal to lose 15lbs. Woot woot! I turned 29, and have embraced where I am at in my life at this point with joy and much hope for the future.

So… all this is to say – I’ve been in a really good place! So why do I feel like a nincompoop after yesterday? Because I went off the deep end and ate everything I could lay my hands on. Literally! I don’t know where it came from, or what caused it. As I look back on it, I didn’t feel sad, or mad, or stressed, or… really any of the emotions that typically lead to those kind of actions. It just… happened. And today, I feel AWFUL! Physically, and mentally! I want to ask myself why, so that I can understand it, but… in the end, does the why really matter?

I did ask that question as I drove to work today, and I really could not pin point anything that could have set me off. The only thing I can think is that I just decided – I don’t care today. I think that the truth is I get to that point slowly, a day at a time. Which means that even though I’ve been feeling good about things and my weight loss, I have been sliding backwards in some other areas. And I guess that in itself is the why. The reason I say it doesn’t matter, is because sometimes knowing why – or wanting to know the why – can be a booby trap! I think sometimes we want so bad to understand the deeper meaning, that we get stuck there. We think that we can’t move forward and make change or let things go – until we know. But sometimes… there isn’t a deeper meaning. And if all we do is sit and try to figure it out, we won’t move forward and we lose momentum we may have had.

So what do I do next? I recognize that today is a new day the next day in my journey. And it is a clean day with no mistakes in it (yet, because I will invariably make mistakes, that's what makes me human). So I can focus on my skills that I’ve been learning this year, commit myself to eat clean today, and forgive myself for my overeating yesterday. In the beginning of this year, and really throughout pretty much my whole “weight loss” life, I would always get stuck in this cycle. It looked like this:

Think about losing weight
Plan about losing weight
Plan about losing weight
Plan about losing weight
Put plan in action lose about 20lbs
Celebrate 20lb loss with a nice binge celebratory dinner
Next day, feel sick about it, but hey, the week is shot, so I’ll just eat whatever and “start again” on Monday
Monday comes and goes… and yeah… I’m still eating!
Feel frustrated for the next two –four weeks as I pretend to still be “on plan”
Week four, finally admit it – I’ve given up
Depression sets in, I hate being depressed – I know what will make me feel better – FOOD!
3-6 months later, after gaining back the 20lbs, plus some, decide, it’s time to lose weight again
Cycle begins again with… planning about losing weight!

The good news is that even though I did this a little at the beginning of this year, my time frames were much shorter than in the past. But in the last three months, I’ve really been working on cutting out this cycle. I’m now to the point that when days like yesterday happen, I no longer think – Oh no I ruined the week, I’ll “start over” on Monday. I no longer think I’ll “start over” tomorrow even. The truth is I’ll NEVER “start over” again! Yes, there are going to be days when I mess up, or when I don’t really follow what it is my heart wants so bad. But I have found that in the “start over” frame of mind, it’s too easy to rationalize my way to more bad behavior. So instead, I acknowledge the fact that I fell down, learn from it if I can, and then pick myself up and keep going the very next day or even the very next meal if I catch myself that soon. It’s like going on a hike. If you went on a 10 mile hike (which I am on Saturday! Wish me luck!), and were almost ½ way there, and you tripped on a root and fell down, you wouldn’t say “Ohhh crap! Well, I guess I better go back to the beginning and “start over”.” No, you would pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep going until you reached the end. And hopefully you would learn to watch more carefully for roots!

I’m pretty excited about this shift in my thinking, because I really believe it’s has been one of my biggest downfalls in the past. But as I said, it no longer will be! So, I plan on today being a great day, and no matter what the scale says tomorrow, I’m going to make it a great weekend. One of my favorite blogs, Prior Fat Girl shared some amazing insight that she recently gained during a yoga session. If what I’ve been talking about is a struggle for you too, you should read her post. It really touched my heart and taught me that although I’ve been doing the technical things; I have not been as dedicated in the things that really matter! Focusing on patience, compassion, perseverance, and letting go. So thank you Jen for reminding me what I need to do and encouraging me to do it!!

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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Catching Up & An Award!

Whew, it's been WAY too long!! I have really missed blogging! I seriously have missed your blogs and in getting to put my thoughts on paper (or... well you know what I mean!). Today and yesterday I read every single one of the blogs on my blog roll and left everyone a comment! And can I just say, you all ROCK!! Afterward I felt so inspired and charged! Thank you again! I also was able to finally add a few new comers to my blog roll as well! One I was SERIOUSLY excited about is Heidi from Hi-D Fit by 40. She is the friend I made during my first 5k!! She started her blog and is kicking butt! Do me a favor, let's all help her get going by giving her some followers! Will you stop by and check out her blog and offer her the same killer support you give me?!? Thanks!!!

So a LONG time ago (well okay, on July 11, which is practically a month ago - where is this year going???!!!) I was given the Versatile Blog award, and I never posted about it! I think two people actually nominated me, but I can only find one. So if you are the 2nd person, tell me so I can give you proper thanks!


So here are the rules that go along with this particular award:

1.Thank the person who gave you the award.
2. Share seven things about yourself.
3. Nominate 15 newly discovered blogs.
4. Let your nominees know about the award.

So.....

1. THANK YOU Brittany!!! I feel so honored!!! I just love her blog, she shares great ideas, lots of adventures, and has the best blog candy going on right now. BUT wait, I WANT it, so DON'T go to her blog right now... go later... after I WIN it!! :) Thanks again!

2. Seven things about me? Okay... here goes!
    1. I'm a terrible house keeper, especially in our office - it's the dumping ground!!
    2. I was once on probation with my drivers license - too many tickets!!
    3. Part of the reason for number 2, I received two speeding tickets 30 minutes apart from each other!
    4. I have my first tan EVER this summer from being so active outside!!! I cannot even tell how exciting this is!! And that is even in spite of the fact that I ALWAYS wear at least 50spf sunscreen.
    5. I was an awful maid of honor to my best friend Liana. But as she now fits in her wedding dress again, she is having her bridals done - so I get a 2nd chance! Woot woot!
    6. I play the piano - not well - but I do play it. I also played the guitar, flute, and oboe in high school. Okay, those last three I barely played, and really only for a guy. Ugh, the things we do!
    7. I bought a size large shirt and wore it this week!!! :)

3. I nominate the following blogs (not all of these are newly discovered for me, but I want YOU to discover them if you don't already follow them, because they are FANTASTIC and MOTIVATING!!!):
    8. Brandi from http://lavidasubida.blogspot.com/
    12. Sarah from http://fatlittlelegs.blogspot.com/ who by the way just hit her 100lb mark recently!!!
    14. Dawne from http://dawneandgreg.blogspot.com/

4. Done!! :)


Thanks again Brittany!!!

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