Category Archives: Healthy Lifestyle

It’s not about quick fixes, it’s about a way of life. Living healthy is a daily and moment by moment choice. The benefits – amazing!

Jumping Ahead

When you are used to being active and involved in everything, being sidelined is almost a fate worse than death. So you can imagine my anticipation and eagerness after a corrective surgery to get back on my feet and get back in the game. Oops, a little too soon and a little too fast.

The good news is that the evil adhesion mass has been removed and once I fully recover from the surgery, look out world here I come! I’ve longed to do so much that my hunger and thirst for it drove me harder, faster, more – and just a little bit of overdoing it.

There are things I’ve promised myself – no more sitting around and doing nothing! Getting out and doing things again and saying yes to more invitations. But I’ve come to realize that being sidelined has an impact on more than your physical ability. It creates new habits, new routines, new ways of doing things. I’ve already faced a couple of situations where activity was available, but the habit of staying home and drawing into myself reared its ugly head and sometimes won out.

The biggest battle I face now may no longer be physical pain, but the kind of life I accepted while I was in so much pain and whether or not to continue coasting along. God give me strength to no longer find coasting along as acceptable!

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The Forgiven Restaurant

There is a saying that goes something like this: You fool me once, shame on you; you fool me twice, shame on me. No one likes to be snookered. Those who have been burned once often make sure they can’t be burned again. Who can blame them? I was determined not to get burned twice – at a “terrible” restaurant.

I have been a vegetarian for more than 20 years. I can assure you, that unless you lived in some “pocket” of vegetarian population, there just weren’t many options for vegetarians 20 years ago in restaurants. Grilled cheese or Mac&Cheese are good fail safes for most, but since my body can’t process cheese (thanks to Crohn’s surgery), I had even less options than other vegetarians. The last thing I needed was to eat at a restaurant that insisted on penalizing me for getting my dish without the meat.

That’s exactly what happened one day at lunch with my coworkers. I asked for a salad without the meat. I’m willing to pay the full price still, I just don’t want the meat. The server told me I would have to pay an upcharge for the change. Seriously? You guys can use that meat for something else and I’m going to pay you to do that? I bit the bullet and ordered the salad so my friends and I didn’t have to find another restaurant on our already short lunch break. But the restaurant made it on my list of places never to return to service.

About a year ago, a “Get Healthy Marshall” program came to town. Many experts came talking about the health benefits of a simpler, plant based diet. The Mayor of Marshall, Texas, was all for it as he had seen his own health issues improve after adopting a more healthy lifestyle. Several restaurants in town went public with offering special menus to be in accordance with the new “plant strong” lifestyle. And it is very popular in Marshall, Texas!

Karl and I went for lunch today. To the “terrible” restaurant as they are now on the list of establishments offering a healthier fare. I went with full knowledge that a “better” restaurant down the street was available if this terrible restaurant still tried to penalize people for being vegetarians. The options were few. Other restaurants have a lot more plant strong offerings, but it was delicious! The atmosphere was perfect for our lunch and the service was spot on. When paying for our meal, I told the owner about giving her restaurant a second chance and being glad that I did.

When she heard my story, she admitted that whoever had insisted on charging me extra for leaving off the meat was probably someone without much food service experience and who didn’t work for her for very long. She was grateful that I had given her restaurant a second chance and thrilled that we enjoyed our experience there today.

I walked out of that restaurant having no desire to carry a grudge about what had happened in the past, and thankful for grace. I gave that restaurant grace and a second chance. But God had given me grace, extended forgiveness to me when I was unforgiving toward others that had harmed me. God reminded me that I’ve had my share of second chances.

Was there a risk that I would have gotten “burned” again? Of course. Life is full of risks. But God risked everything to extend grace to me. I’m glad He prompted me to extend grace to this restaurant. Besides the beauty of forgiveness, I tasted one of the best veggie sandwiches ever!

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At Peace or War

I’m really enjoying the Creation Health classes I go to every Thursday. Our topic today was rest, emphasizing mental and spiritual rest as well as the expected physical rest. Did you know that losing 3 hours of sleep a night can cut your immune system in half? Adequate rest is so vital to our health.

When it came to spiritual rest, the Creation Health plan describes it this way: spiritual rest is being at peace with God. We were asked to say what that meant to us. My mom, also in the class with me said it best.

If you’re not at peace with God, then you are at war.

Where are you at in your spiritual rest? Are you at peace with God? Or are you at war?

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10 Weeks

So I’ve embarked on this new 10 week program called Creation Health. It talks about your whole health by looking at C R E A T I O N, Choice, Rest, Environment, Activity, Trust, Interpersonal Relationships, Outlook and Nutrition. It is going to be an interesting journey.

One of the beautiful or scary, depending on how you look at it, aspects of Creation Health is the personal evaluation. We take a short quiz to assess where we are at now and then again at the end of the 10 weeks. Why? To see if we’ve managed to learn anything and more importantly – apply it to our lives. Why? Because they want to know they’ve made a difference in offering this program to us.

Think about it for a moment. Isn’t this true for all of life? It can’t just be something we’ve learned, but something we’ve put into practice. What if everything we did had a before and after evaluation so we could see if it was really making a difference or not? Ten weeks on the Parent Teacher Organization, Defensive Driving Class, Fill in the blank Disease Awareness (I can recommend two if you don’t know any: ADEM and Crohn’s Disease). At the end, are we any better off than when we began? Did we take the time to put it into practice instead of merely learning it?

Ten weeks. I’m going to see what happens. God help me put what I’m learning into practice! If you’d like to know more about the program yourself, visit http://www.creationhealth.tv.

 

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Time Out Gets a Bad Rap

I am here to speak up for that often misunderstood gift of Time Out. Someone in the marketing department should have gotten fired for promoting this solely for disciplinary purposes in school. It’s about time we saw the other side of Time Out. Please bear in mind, this is coming from a woman juggling too many things and about to drop them all. Time Out is the only place you can set them all down and not get in trouble for it.

How Time Out should really be marketed: Are you running at capacity? Are your shoulders no longer broad enough for the burdens you are carrying? Did one more thing just get dumped in your lap? You, yes even you, can leave it all behind during Time Out. This special place leaves all the external stimuli behind so you can just be alone and get your thoughts together once again. Some of the world’s greatest leaders highly recommend Time Out. Read this excerpt from that Nazarene Radical – Jesus, “Come apart and rest awhile.” Call now and we’ll even throw in a special Time Out box, with great pictures inside of remote places of serene beauty to help you get the most out of your Time Out experience.

With truth in advertising – this is the way Time Out should be promoted and right now, this busy pastor’s wife, mother of three and very poor juggler is in line to be one of the first to get my very own Time Out!

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The Crock Pot

What’s for lunch? Ask Michael, he’s in charge of it today. For these words, I got two looks of surprise! How fun to be a mom of creativity.

Michael was stunned into practically pleading for me to take care of lunch, which I of course did. Afterward, however, I asked him what he was going to do in the future. After all, he had plans for grad school and then work as an engineer – no thoughts of getting married. After a small amount of discussion, Michael revealed his plot to buy family size frozen mac and cheese that has to bake in the oven. He plans to eat on the leftovers for at least a couple of days. Lasagna also appeared on the horizon in this manner. Enough homage to Italy though, so I told him at least he knew how to open a can of beans and season it some so he could make burritos for himself.

That was a definite no. Michael said he would never open a can of beans. He will buy a crock pot and cook my famous beans from scratch. He will not eat canned beans. Wow. Pasta can be frozen, but he’ll buy a crock pot and cook the beans. You know you’ve done something right when a young man destined for life as a bachelor eating frozen dinners says there is one tool he needs in order to cook mom’s famous beans. At least I know what to get him for graduation now.

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Sans Gloves

It has been a long project and it still isn’t “done.” My husband got the garden boxes built for Mother’s Day, but we had to wait until today to get great soil from an heirloom gardening place in town. It is rich, dark and looks like it can grow anything. For people like me, we need all the help we can get.

Everyone in the family has work or gardening gloves except for me. Karl asked me again this afternoon, are you sure you don’t want some gloves? I assured him that I would be fine. I don’t mind getting my fingers dirty. I know how to use a nail brush, soap and running water. I’ve never seen “in the bag at the store” potting soil that looked anything like what we got today. It is so beautiful and it felt wonderful to work that soil with my hands.

The children had helped in various stages of the project. Michael, Matthew and Greta have helped build boxes, seal boxes, water seedlings, pick out starter plants, shovel the special soil and maybe a few other things. But I’m the one that took the plants out of the starter pots and placed them in their new homes, working that rich soil. We’ve all had contact with it and hopefully that will make the taste of the fresh produce that much better. I’m looking forward to tomatoes that have taste and strawberries that smell good, look good and taste good!

I’m praying for God to bless our gardening efforts. We need it. I’ve failed many times before. We keep trying to improve, like getting good soil and using starter plants instead of trying to grow from seeds. I’ve already been blessed, getting a connection with the soil that will provide the environment that will grow plants that will feed my family. What a process. What a gift that God has given us – to be connected to the world He placed us in. Resting in all of God’s goodness and what He had provided was our first duty and gardening was our first job.

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