Monday, October 1, 2018

Ten Days In

Wow!!! I can't believe today is the tenth day of my healthy lifestyle journey !!
I'm happy to report I'm down 3.4 pounds.  I can't say I can tell that I've lost weight, but I can really tell I am getting stronger with my workouts.  

I still can't do the entire Level One of the 30 Day Shred without taking a quick breather once in awhile, but I can do MORE than I could before.  I can do more pushups than I could and pushups have always been hard for me.  I have worked out every day for the past 10 days, except yesterday. I have read that the body needs one day of rest per week, so I didn't do the workout on Sunday.  But I was up early this morning and exercised before work.  I still don't like it when that alarm goes off, and probably never will, but morning works are the hardest to skip because there just isn't an excuse to NOT work out.  And oh it feels SOOOO GOOD when I'm finished!!! 

I did have a couple Diet Cokes over the weekend, and they sure tasted good.  But I have had FAR FEWER Diet Cokes the last 10 days than I would normally would have so I'm considering that a win.

I'm trying to eat healthy foods, smaller portions, and trying to eat fewer carbs.  

My mom has been gone 11 weeks this morning.  I still can't believe it.  I know she is in heaven, healed and whole and that makes me smile.  And yet I go out to the cemetery and look down at the grave and my heart breaks all over again.  I still cry every day.  I miss her terribly.  I just want the old mom back.  The mom before she got sick.  I'm going on with life, but man, oh man, this hurts.

Our daughter-in-law is feeling great and our grandson is due one month from today!We're beyond excited.  Please keep the prayers coming for a healthy baby and an easy, uneventful delivery.  Those last 4 or 5 weeks of pregnancy are just no fun, so please keep the prayers coming.

Please pray for our country.  Pray for our leaders.  Pray for your church and your pastor. I'm praying today for you.  Asking God to show you specifically the path He has for the rest of your life. His way is always best.

Blessings from Missouri!! 

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Day Five

Today is my fifth day of working out every day.  I started doing the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred DVD on Day Three and I love it!! You can check out the details of the 30 Day Shred HERE!

I snapped this picture from my front porch this morning just after I finished working out!!  What a beautiful morning here in Missouri!!!

I'm doing Level One and I use 5 pound weights.  The workout is 28 minutes from warm up to cool down.  The movements aren't complicated.  Just physically challenging since I'm out of shape.  I still can't keep up the entire time and I do have to modify the pushups (think girl pushups on my knees!).  I still have to stop sometimes and catch my breath, but I only stop for a few seconds then pick right back up.  I know I won't see any results standing there watching her exercise, so I keep going!!!

My muscles are sore, but a good kind of sore.  I can tell I'm getting a little bit stronger each day.  I've done a little research and it seems like most people spend 10 days on Level One then move to Level Two.  Right now Level One is plenty for me.  I'll let you know when I move up to Level Two.

I'm doing pretty well on my goal of eating less and eating healthier food. This morning I had a protein shake for breakfast, and I have baked chicken with broccoli for lunch.  For my evening meal I try hard to eat no carbs.  My body just can't handle carbs very well so I don't eat them often.  That's tough for me cause I love potatoes!!!  But potatoes attach themselves to my hips so I rarely indulge.

I am not swearing off Diet Coke forever, but I want it to be a treat, not just something I drink when I'm thirsty.  Focusing on drinking lots more water.  I haven't had a Diet Coke since last week!!

I'm five days into this journey and I'm excited.  Do I love setting my alarm 45 minutes early so I can exercise before work?  Honestly, no.  I am NOT a morning person.  But for my life, exercising in the mornings just works better.  If I wait until after work it's easier to make an excuse to NOT work out . . . and believe me I speak from experience.  In the mornings I have NO excuse but my own laziness.  I don't inconvenience anybody but ME in the mornings.  So I'm committing to setting my alarm and getting up early and working out in the mornings.

As I said in the beginning, I promise to be honest.  If I skip a workout I will let you know.  If I totally blow my healthy eating for a day I will share it.  And I will share my progress on losing weight.  I weighed myself this morning and I'm down 2.2 pounds since Day One.  


 **Disclaimer - This is NOT a paid advertisement for Jillian Michaels or 30 Day Shred.  She has never heard of me.  I purchased this DVD on Amazon and paid for it myself.  Just giving you my honest opinion.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Day Three

Today is Day Three of my healthy lifestyle journey.  Here's an update.

On Saturday morning I did a 30 minute workout at home.  I didn't think I'd really done much until I tried to go down the steps from our porch late morning. My legs were shaky!!  I'm really trying to make good food choices but it isn't easy for me.  I love food.   For breakfast I had overnight oats made with unsweetened almond milk.  I also attended a baby shower for my beautiful daughter-in-law Saturday afternoon.  I had already eaten lunch so I skipped the sandwiches and dessert.  Instead I opted for a small salad and some grapes.  I drank water.  For supper I fixed pork steak and a salad.  I ate a small portion of the pork steak and a big lettuce salad. 

On Sunday I again had the overnight oats for breakfast.  They really are tasty.  For lunch I ate a small piece of the leftover pork steak and a salad.  For supper I fixed 2 small beef steaks and I ate one small steak and a salad with ranch dressing.  I had a banana for my snack, and some cashews.   I walked 1 mile Sunday afternoon and did a 25 minute workout Sunday evening.  I'm still making up my workout as I go along.  I'm doing lots of arm lifts to the front and side and over my head with the 5 pound weights.  And I hold the weights while I do squats. Ouch.  My legs are SORE!!  I have an exercise DVD I bought months ago.  I've never even opened it.  Tonight I'm going to open it and try to work my way through it. 

I did some meal planning over the weekend so I have 5 portions of chicken tenders and brown rice, enough for every day for lunch this week.  I brushed the tenders with a little bit of olive oil and sprinkled everything bagel seasoning on them.  The brown rice is just plain, made with water.  

Speaking of water, I read that a great weight loss tool is drinking half your body weight in ounces of water each day.  This is tough for me.  I'm not a huge water drinker.  I love Diet Coke and tea with artificial sweetener.  But I'm trying to make better choices so my GOAL is to try to drink NO DIET COKE this week, and to drink very little tea with sweetener.

I promise to be honest with you all.  If I skip a workout I'll tell you.  If I blow it and make a horrible food choice (like pepperoni pizza or a bowl of ice cream) I'll tell you.  I'm very serious about these next 97 days, but I'm also human.  I won't be perfect. I'm not vegan or vegetarian and my idea of "clean eating" will probably look different than yours.  But I'm really hoping that the accountability of making this very public on my blog and on Instagram will KEEP ME FOCUSED ON MAKING BETTER CHOICES!!!

Had a great sermon yesterday at church!!  We studied Rahab and how courageous she was.  Courageous faith.  That's what I want to have.  Courage to stand for Jesus no matter what.  

Snapped this picture Saturday evening.  Psalm 19:1  "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands!!"

Have a blessed day!!!!

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Day One

Just being honest, I have not taken very good care of my body these past few years. I have not exercised.  I have eaten too much of the wrong foods and not nearly enough fruits and vegetables.  I have not made my health a priority. Ten years ago I lost 30 pounds. I have gained it all back.  I’ve tried everything in the book. Weight Watchers. Atkins. Starvation. Beach Body.  Low fat. No fat. High fat no carb. I have literally tried it all. And it all works ... for a short time. Then the diet stops and the weight comes back on. A vicious cycle. So today I find myself overweight and out of shape AGAIN. It’s so frustrating. Maybe you’ve been there. Maybe you’re there now.

I have found a young lady who has inspired me to quit dieting and get healthy the old fashioned way. Moving more and eating healthier. Her name is Marga Banaga and she lives in the Philippines. You can find her on YouTube and other social media.  She has a 20 minute video on her initial 100 day journey to eat clean and work out daily. She lost 30 pounds. She looks so healthy !!  So strong!! So amazing !!! So I’ve decided if she can do it, so can I.  Now her clean eating looks different from mine. She eats shrimp and salmon. No other meat. Hello, I live on a cattle farm in Missouri so my clean eating definitely includes meat. But she eats lots of fruits and vegetables and healthy carbs. She drinks a ton of water. And she works out every single day. Nothing fancy. Just moving her body in good old fashioned exercise.

So today is my Day One. I’ve done a 30 minute workout on my own this morning. In my living room. I tried to remember some basics from every exercise class I’ve taken. I have a mat and a set of 5 pound weights and my floor. That’s it. No gym membership. My muscles are sore already. But I’m committed. Today starts my journey toward eating clean and working out. A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE. Nothing extreme. Nothing difficult. Just CONSISTENCY!!!  I can do this. And by making this public I’m holding myself accountable.

I promise to be brutally honest. I’ll share my successes and my failures. What worked. What didn’t. What I’m eating. What my workout consists of. Some meal preparing. And I’ll share my progress. This morning was hard. I’m out of shape. But I did it. And you can too.


Friday, August 17, 2018

Three Angels Haiti Needs Your Help

I have mentioned before that I sponsor at child at Three Angels Children's Relief in Haiti.  If you follow Layla Palmer over at The Lettered Cottage you know that their precious son, Steevenson, was adopted through Three Angels.  I have sponsored a child at Three Angels for many years now and it is a wonderful organization.  They are a Christian orphanage and also a Christian school, totally legit, so all the money really goes to help these kids and all donations are tax deductible.

I recently received an e-mail from them asking for help.  It's back to school time in Haiti, and the kids need some new books.  I never thought about it until I read the e-mail, but schools in Haiti aren't air conditioned, so the oppressive heat and humidity takes a toll on books.  You can read all about the need on their website.  

Three Angels 

Please prayerfully consider either sponsoring an orphan, sponsoring a student, or making a one time donation to Three Angels.  I have no affiliation with Three Angels, other than being a sponsor.  If you can skip a few trips to Starbucks or one meal out per month, you can sponsor a student.  If sponsorship won't work for you, then please consider making a one-time gift.  All of the details can be found on their website . . . THREE ANGELS HAITI. 

They are 100% funded by donations and these kids need our help.  And James 1:27 is pretty black and white about our responsibility as Christians . . .  "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."  I can't go to Haiti, but I can send money to help.

So click on the website and make a difference in the lives of some really awesome kids.  I did.  

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Where Do I Go From Here ? ? ?

It's been two weeks since my mom gained heaven.  Two weeks since her faith became sight.  To say I miss her is an understatement.  I have shed many, many tears.  I tell her I love her and miss her every single day (no, she doesn't answer me, but it makes me feel like she's still here).  I've gone to the cemetery a few times and it makes me sad.  She's not there.  She is in heaven healed and whole and more alive than she ever was here on this earth.  I believe that with all my heart.  I feel selfish missing her because she was so sick and I'm so very thankful her suffering is over.  She fought hard to try to stay here with us.  But there is a hole in my heart that will always be there.  I will always miss her because she was such a huge part of my life.  I know there are people who aren't close to their moms and that makes me very sad for those people.  My mom and I were very close.  I cherish the memories I have of her.  She was wonderful and I am so very proud to be her daughter. 

So where do I go from here?  Frankly I had considered not blogging anymore.  Mainly because for the last two years the only thing I have blogged about is my mom.  I don't know that there are very many people who even read this blog anymore, and that's OK.  I blog for myself anyway and I still have things to share and stories to tell so I've decided I'm going to keep Down On The Farm going if for no other reason than I enjoy it.

I'm in the process of simplifying my life and I'm starting with my house.  We've lived here for over 20 years and we've accumulated a lot of stuff.  I'm not a spender.  I don't get up on Saturday mornings and feel like I have to go shopping and buy myself something.  But in the last 20 years our house has gotten really "full."  So I'm purging and donating and organizing.  I've cleaned out a small closet that had become the equivalent of a junk drawer and I'll be blogging about that soon and posting before and after pictures.  It's amazing what purging, and a few bins from Marshalls can do for a small closet!!  I cleaned out just one drawer in my bathroom but OH THE JOY of that one empty drawer!!!  It's the little things people!!!

Our daughter came by this weekend and took the final load of items from her old room.  So I'm going to do some switch-a-roos with closets and bedroom furniture and I'll be blogging about that as well.  Our interior walls need painted and everything just needs to be REFRESHED!  Nothing major.  Not knocking out any walls.  But we've really done very little to our house in the last 20 years and it's time for an update.  I'm looking forward to doing that and sharing the process with you.

My sweet grandson will be here in late fall and my goal is to be able to spend as much time with him, and our kids, as possible.  And NOT to be stressing about all the closets I need to clean out or all the drawers I need to empty.  I'm on a mission to get everything cleaned and organized by the end of the year.  And hopefully it won't take me that long!!!  My house isn't that big and I'm not a hoarder so there really isn't THAT much to do.  But I do have several drawers and closets that need to be emptied out and organized.  My theme is -- if I don't need it, use it or love it IT'S GONE!!!!  

I really do want to say thank you for sticking with me through the two most difficult years of my life.  Your prayers for me and my family and my beautiful mother have been appreciated so much.  It made a difference.  No, the outcome was not what I prayed for my mom, but I trust that God knows what He's doing. Knowing that my mother is in heaven waiting for me makes me smile through my tears.

So if you've come this far with me and you're ready to go a little farther please  keep visiting Down On The Farm.  There will be LOTS OF PICTURES of my new grandson (YES, I'M GOING TO BE ONE OF THOSE GRANDMAS!!!).  Pictures of "before" and "after" of drawers and closets and walls.  Stories about my mom and my husband and my kids.  Stories about my life surrounded by cows and turkeys and dust and mud and flies and manure.  Posts about my faith in Jesus and a few sermons cause I can't keep silent about His love for me!  Maybe some recipes and some funny stories and the day to day life of a 54 year old wife and mom and soon to be grandma trying to make the REST of my life the BEST of my life.  I want to be a better servant of Jesus, a better daughter, sister, aunt, friend, mom and wife.  I want to be the very best ME that God created me to be. 

Blessings from Down On The Farm!!!!