Sunday, June 28, 2009

Operation Beautiful

Having recently found the blog of Operation Beautiful, I have a place to click that guarantees that I will be smiling in minutes.

On this site, readers are encouraged to leave post-its in public places. These little love notes are to promote healthy self-image and counter the media perception of perfection.

I liked it so much that I posted one for myself, on the bathroom mirror:

Please ignore the outfit - I was up at 4:30 a.m. with plans to garden all morning. But you know what? I really am all of those things but I need reminding quite a lot.

In the fight against negative thoughts, I ventured into other spots:
What's that little note in the kitchen? Could it help me fight the thoughts I have about my cooking?

Well, YEAH! So what if this morning's muffins tasted just a bit too "flour-y"? I baked them from scratch with lots of love and thought for my family's health. Will this help me to enjoy cooking more as I fight the thought that I'm a bad cook? I think it's already working.

And what's this? A mirror in the laundry room where I too often see myself in housewife array - and judge my homely appearance?

Now I'm reminded not to let those thoughts prevail over the loving things I do.

Daughter loved the site and idea too. So she actually put up the first sign on her bathroom mirror:
But I admit, it sure would be nice to hear these things from someone besides myself. It would've been nice if someone else could put little love notes around the house for me.

Well, do unto others....
So I posted this one on the mirror beside Daughter's other note. She loved it and moved it to her room mirror "so I can see it in the morning when I get up."

So who else do I love around here? Little love notes for someone else...
On the bathroom mirror,

and above his dresser...

Who's day can YOU brighten?
Maybe your own?
Maybe a family member's?
Maybe some young girl who looks up into the local stuff-mart bathroom mirror?
Maybe a fellow blogger in their comment section?
I dare you.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Good gifts

I've been dieting since February - basically taking spurts of starving myself, recording my food intake, and doing a lot of inner evaluation (and brow-beating) of my weight issues. (About 4 months worth.)

Now, 15-20 pounds lighter but having hit a "plateau", I am beginning to wise-up. In my diet notebook, I've drawn analogies between hunger and a forest fire, food and guns, and written down lots of Bible verses and motivational quotes.

But nothing compares to this newest realization (and so simple that I feel quite slow.)

I can eat all day long. Yep. I've been doing it this week and the pounds have been melting off. I haven't been hungry once. I haven't even exercised other than daily housework or normal garden activities. I have craved junk food and naps on occasion, but I know it's only because my flesh is revolting against the weight loss and that my upcoming weight maintenance will be much, much easier. It has been obvious that these occasional comfort-food cravings are not REAL hunger when I KNOW I just ate enough food that I would be miserable if I had a piece of cake too!

What am I eating, you ask? One thing is milk and eggs from free-range, country animals. Raw milk has stopped my old milk cravings (that needed cookies to go with it, right?!) I suppose that's because the raw milk still has all the vitamins, minerals, and natural enzymes intact. During the times that we've switched back to store-bought milk, it just doesn't satisfy! See the connection? Once glass of raw milk, one vitamin-packed egg, and I don't crave more and therefore don't eat more than I need.

Also, lots of filtered water. And snacking on all the fruits I want. Veggies all I want! Yogurt, raw cheese, salsa from the gardens of friends, nuts & seeds when I want something crunchy. Nearly every breakfast is a toasted slice of whole-wheat, sourdough bread drizzled with local honey. No more skipping meals!

The key is to not let yourself get hungry! Stay full on healthy stuff - the stuff God gave us and not the stuff that factories have taken and processed for shelf-life (like ramen noodles, white flour, corn syrup-laden products, NASTIES!) This way the ravenous fire of hunger meets a barren place where it cannot burn and demand fuel that will flash fire!Purple tomatoes in pots with our garden spot in the background.

More than ever, I understand that no diet product, no exercise dvd, nothing is as good as wholesome food. I can't even describe how these 4 months have changed my tastebuds. Food of empty calories just don't satisfy me. Milk chocolate tastes like wax now - only dark chocolate will do. Pasta and bread must be whole wheat or else it tastes like paper. Rice too.

I am still in-process and wish that I could help you if you are in the same weight prison. However, I can only offer you the encouragement that if you change your thinking and your eating habits (eating to live not living to eat) then your body will change too. And although I still have approximately 40 more pounds to lose to be at a healthy weight, I am no longer going to rush it with starvation (don't deny God's good gifts!) or diet gimmicks, or exercise bulimia (that steals my energy from my more joyful activities!)

I'm gonna eat, eat, eat, and drink REAL milk and lots of water and enjoy where I am at. And give all glory and praise to the Lord that He has heard my prayers for wisdom and good health. To deny His good gifts, well, that's just plain rude!

(Note: free clip-art from Penniwig's. Thanks, Dearie! See her link in my sidebar.)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

June in Bloom

My hubby just let me know that he misses my posting to this blog. How odd! I really didn't think he (who hears every tiny detail of all my days) would have such an attachment, but he likes to "check in on" me from work sometimes. LOL! I love you so much, sweetheart! You're the best!
On The Cheek
Last night we went on a date, rare but fun time alone. We ate at a nice restaurant, had ice cream sundaes at Baskin-Robbins, then watched The Great American Balloon Race. This is the kick-off to the annual Great American Brass Band Festival. It was so magical. I apologize that I have no photos to share. When I pulled out the camera the batteries were completely dead. So we just concentrated on being in the moment. As the hot-air balloons landed in fields and yards near Junction City, we did the unusual act (for us) of driving around to watch - kinda like ambulance-chasing without the morbid factor. It was so fun.

I've been crocheting again. Here are a few photos of recent projects:
You can tell my niece LOVES her crocheted gift...LOL!So I had to make her little sister one too.
I've made dolls for the youngest ones, to match their own features.

I'm currently working on another pillow cover for the niece above.

We went camping last weekend at Levi Jackson State Park. The camping part wasn't the best (having come from a nature-rich & quiet farm to a park in the middle of the city, what did I expect?) However, I highly suggest you visit the park on a day trip. The working grain mill, the Mountian Life museum, and the picnic spots are excellent spots for history and relaxation.

I plan to do a post on this visit so I'll just give you a nice taste for now...We've also been busy with a newly formed Kentucky Junior Historical Society in our county. Field trips monthly have been exciting and educational. I could really get into state and localized history as a career!
Daughter and her best-friend in the Osage Orange tree at Fort Harrod.
Also recent, my interest in family genealogy and gathering information from cemeteries.
A grave of an early ancestor to settle in Garrard County, Ky? Very possibly.
And last (but not least) we have a new addition here on the ridgetop. During the last week of May, a stray cat found her way (of COURSE it's a female) to our porch. We swore off any more pets. No more! But this one was obviously trained to tug at the heart-strings to ensure survival:

See? Even Olive likes her. So, after a trip to the vet to ensure her health, she has been give the name.....

(drumroll, please......)


May the Stray.

She will remain an outdoor kitty. We were able to draw the line there as a cat's life expectancy is 12-18 years and she is less than a year old. And I'm so tired of cat hair in the house from Motor and Maggie already, no matter how cute they can be...Maggie asleep with a ball of yarn.