How To Have a Marital Conversation

That watching other people exercise and wishing the benefits could magically transfer to you? It’s a real thing! Who knew?

Sweetman knew – that’s who.

Last week, I shared a funny e-card image on The Facebook.  Sweetman, who detests The Facebook, but seems to love looking over my shoulder to see what’s going on, took particular interest in this one.

Health_Benefit_ecard

“Did you know there is truth to that?”, he asked.

“To what?  The fact that “ok is not an acceptable scrabble word?”, I replied (referring to the one I was thinking way too hard about.)

“No. I knew that. (But, of course he did. He’s wicked smaht.) There are studies that have been released that show that people who watch others exercise gain the benefits in the form of…”. He launched into the findings of these studies.

I, however, shut my brain off after those who watch…gain the benefits…, because AMEN! And, also, I didn’t want whatever came after “gain the benefits” to dull the euphoria that this new information was providing me.

But, in true Sweetman fashion, he wouldn’t let me tune out.

“Isn’t that great? Makes you want to exercise, doesn’t it?”, he concluded.

“Oh YES it does!”, I absent-mindedly replied.

Clearly.

“Good. Then that study was worth sharing.”, he said (a little too enthusiastically, if you ask me.).

Wait. WHAT?!? What just happened?

As usual, when I put my brain in park while it’s still on its way to a destination, all kinds of trouble ensues.

The last time I flippantly said “YES!” to something he was proposing, I found myself strapped to a pedometer, walking “at least” 7,000 steps a day with promises of an extra couple of hundred dollars in my anemic wallet if I saw it through for a month. Only to find out, a few days in, that those 7,000 steps would really need to be more like ten to twelve thousand, and for 6 months, in addition to a full health check (which included a BLOOD DRAW and a weigh-in). When I became wise to the extent of this scheme, I informed Sweetman that he could take that pedometer and kindly dispose of it in the nearest trash can. Please and thank you.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I was still trying to process all of this wonderful news and manipulate sort it to my advantage.

And, in addition, now, try to figure out what I had just agreed to.

“Could you remind me what I just agreed to?” (Sometimes it’s just best to ask point-blank.)

“Regular weekly exercise.”, he said.

“That’s exactly what I was afraid of.”

Yes indeedy.

Lesson learned? Pay attention during conversations that you have with Sweetman. He is wicked smaht!

Thankfuls – Maiden Voyage

I’d like to do something new around here.  Maybe you’ll like it.  Maybe you’ll think it’s drivel (I’ve been dying to use that word, lately – thank you Sherlock!).

It’s happening either way.

Every Saturday, I’d like to post a list of things I’m thankful for. They will be serious things, totally inane things, and everything in between. Sometimes, there will be pictures.  Or not. I’m borrowing the idea from my sweet friend, Monica, over at Elevate Ideas. She does a weekly “Thanksday” post that always delights me.  And informs me. And, maybe best of all, helps me get to know her better.

I want us to get to know each other better in this space, too.

Don’t you like the sound of that?

I’ll share with you. You share with me.  We’ll learn some things about each other, gain new tips and tricks, pick up great encouragement and ideas, and laugh along the way.

Doesn’t that just sound like So Much Fun?

Alrighty then… let’s get to it.

For the inaugural Thankfuls List, I give you:

1. This picture that Sweetgirl brought home from Kindy-garten last week? It sums her up perfectly. She makes me smile. glitter_garden_missindeedy

2.  Even before this “get healthy” endeavor began, I had this longstanding habit of putting 2 or 3 tablespoons of Hint Water into my plain old water.  It has no artificial anything and no sweetener – just essence.  It comes in all sorts of flavors, but this is my favorite, hands down.  It makes chugalugging the water that much more palatable. True story.

Hint_Water_Missindeedy

3.  It feels like the whole “Nespresso” wave is taking the world by storm.  I’m still over here, though, enjoying my Keurig, and loving the mug that a sweet friend gave to me recently. It soothes my still-raw spirit whenever I reach into my cupboard for my old favorite and remember how I recently karate-chopped it to death. Indeed it does.

Keurig_Pink_Coffee_Cup_Missindeedy

4. My sister-in-love, The Italian, turned us all onto this Omega-3 supplement that is DA BOMB, I tell you! We have tried so many and they just taste funky as all get out.  This one? Delish.  Sweetboy literally asks me every morning when he can have it again.  Every. Single. Morning.  And if I was a swearing kind of girl, I’d swear it’s improved my mood and helped even out my sleeping patterns.  But hey, I don’t swear. Much.

Barleans_Omega_Oil_Missindeedy

5. And last, but certainly not the least, is the “Frozen” CD.  While Sweetman might tell you he’s going to pull the last remaining 26 strands of hair he has on his head, if he has to hear it one more time, secretly? I think he likes it too.  And there is nothing, nothing, I tell you, like hearing your 5 and 10 year olds belt out songs in unison that make them giggle and smile and sound like a choir of angels. Well, the first 18 times, for sure!

And that’s what I’ve got for you this weekend.

What are you thankful for this week?

I Kinda Wish I Hadn’t

When your day starts like this:

trouble_car_missindeedy

When the gas light is on and the low tire pressure light is on and it’s below 10 degrees… well, it can only go up from there, right?

And then, you know that scene in the movie where the overweight person feels like they’re having chest pains and is concerned because they have so much to live for, so they call their doctor, who sends them to the ER, which is where you they find out that they just have a bad case of gas and a good case of a torn shoulder muscle and that’s the way the day ends?

Yeah, me neither.

trouble_hospital_hospital

Please, hospital staff, ignore the rash that is still All Over My Body. It’s going away, the doctor promised. And it’s not contagious. The doctor promised.

And, in other news, I kinda wish I hadn’t eaten that popcorn yesterday.

What Do You Crave? An Invitation

Do not say chocolate. For The Love, please do not say chocolate!

“Life is not made better because we overindulge in an unhealthy choice.” -Made To Crave Devotional by Lysa TerKeurst.

Well, isn’t that the truth?

Maybe food isn’t the craving you need to overcome.  Maybe it’s that desire to spend even when there is no money to spend with.  Or you long to win at a game you have no business playing.  Perhaps you crave a drink to soothe, or a touch to heal broken places, or a feeling of excitement that’s long since gone.  I get it.  I do.  My own path to greater dependence on God is littered not only with devil dog wrappers, but also with the remnants of desires fulfilled in altogether unholy ways.

And I am aware that the people God has placed in my life, whether lovers of Him or not, are watching me.  They are watching to see what this faith in Him provides that will be of some comfort to them.  Or if My God will bring them some measure of contentment that they do not yet have.

Am I living a life that exudes a dependence on and fulfillment by this God I claim to fiercely love? Does my satisfaction of those cravings demonstrate a dependence on Him at all?

This is not a journey with a definite ending of “Now, I’m finally walking in truth and light and will never need another lesson again.”. It is, however,  one that will need constant reevaluating and course-correcting. I recognize that I’m going to need others with me as I go about attempting to do just that. Deeper dependence on God and less dependence on Other Things will require a strength I know I don’t often possess. It will ask me to mine places I don’t often want to go.

So, consider this an invitation.  I’m inviting you into this place of need.  This place where our need meets His desire to fill it. I need friends to hold me accountable, during. I need encouragement, throughout. I need to know I’m not alone on this journey.

So… what do you crave?

Would you join me? For the next six weeks, you’ll find me over here at Proverbs 31 Ministries’ Online Bible Study as we work through “Made To Crave” by Lysa TerKeurst.  I’ll be joining approximately 34,000 others determined to understand that life is only made better when we see the bounty that already exists in our daily lives.  I’ll be tracking my progress by writing about it, here, each Thursday.

There is safety in numbers.

We are better together.

I need lots of wise counsel.  God said so.

Together_Missindeedy

If this post spoke to your heart about cravings you long to wage war against, or even if you’re just curious what online Bible study is all about, click the button below.  You’ll find encouragement and lots of other invitations there.

OBSBlogHop

Karate Chopping Coffee Cups

I don’t want to brag, but… I can break a finger with one well-placed karate chop to my favorite coffee cup.

take_note_missindeedy

I woke up Monday, the first day back to school for the kids (I feverishly prayed!), and padded downstairs to fire up my IV drip of coffee.  When I opened the cabinet to pull out my favorite coffee mug, it jumped out at me.

Literally.

And, I shouldn’t really brag twice in one post, but… I have super-quick reflexes.

Too quick, in this case.

I threw my hand out to break the fall of the mug. (Have I mentioned that it was my favorite one?)

And I broke my finger instead.

It takes talent, people.

Now, as we’ve covered in my little rash story, I am one in a million. And apparently, this break is so perfectly placed on the top of my finger that there is nothing that can be done for it. It will “heal thyself”.

And they say only Jesus can perform miracles!

My Very Most Favorite Coffee Mug, however, will not share the same fate.  After I iced my finger for a good long while and calmed everyone in the house down, I went to pick up my beloved cup and this is what happened:

broken_mug_missindeedy

I did try to super glue it. And Gorilla Glue it. And pray over it.

Sadly, it just would not heal thyself.  (Although I left it out overnight just in case Jesus wanted to surprise me with that. I’m always on the lookout for the miraculous!)

Nope.

So, I’ve made a note never to attempt karate chopping coffee cups again.

And, not to overstate the obvious but… I clearly have a very powerful karate chop. Because, I’m pretty sure that when I’ve opened the cabinet each morning this week, the rest of the coffee cups have trembled at the presence of my powerful hand.

Pretty sure.

One In A Million

You may remember we had back-to-back episodes of Strep Throat in this house last month.  Well, it’s the gift that keeps on giving…

What started as a strange little rash on the backs of my legs two weeks before Christmas has spread like wildfire all over my body. Not. Even. Kidding. And I would have lived with it…happily. And stayed covered head to toe in clothes that would not only guard against these single digit temperatures we’ve been experiencing up here in the Northeast, but also hidden the effects of some of the leftover Christmas cookies I may or may not have consumed recently.

But, once I discovered they were making their way upwards and started to see them in my hairline, I put my foot down.  You do NOT mess with a girl’s hair!

Amen?

Now, when my general practitioner initially took a look at this little rash those four weeks ago, she had no idea what it could be.  “Maybe an allergic reaction to the amoxicillin? Why don’t you stop using it and let’s see what happens over the next 2 weeks.”, was her suggestion.

She then kindly sat down on the bench next to me to thumb through her manual of Every Horrendous Rash Ever. I became more woozy with each turn of the page as she kept murmuring things like, “Hmmm, certainly not that.” and “DEFINITELY not that!”.  I may have gagged a few times and danged near passed out, but she was not to be deterred. “We” looked through far too many pages of that blasted manual of ailments. Ailments, I’ll have you know, that I may need CIA level brainwashing techniques to ever remove from my mind. (I don’t know if the CIA does that sort of thing, but if they do and any of y’all “know someone”, please, help a girl out! )

So, back to the doctor I went. But this time, I was rerouted to my dermatologist. Now, I love my dermatologist.  He reminds me of Mr. Magoo and he always has a mischievous twinkle in his eye.  Plus, he’s seen me naked and never batted an eye.

Anyhoo, he saw me and instantly lit up with a huge smile and shook my hands warmly as he asked me to what he owed the pleasure of seeing me again so soon. I threw off that glamorous johnny quicker than a woman on fire and pointed to my head. “Look at this! This rash is creeping up into my hairline! You’ve got to help me get rid of this rash, Dr. G.!”  Now, I think the nurse might have snickered a bit at the fact that I didn’t mind standing practically buck-nekid while I feverishly pointed to my hair, but I didn’t give two hoots.

“Hmmm…”, he said all calm-like. He then asked me exactly 2 questions before solving this mystery.

“You just got over a couple of bouts with strep throat?”

“Yes.”

“Do you have a history of psoriasis in your family?”

“Yes.”

“Guess what you have?”, he asked as if he was dying for me to know the answer and just couldn’t wait to tell me.

“A rash?”, I gamely replied.

“Better!  A STREP RASH!”, he excitedly said.

Me?  Not so excited.

I am apparently “one in a million” people who get an All Over Body Rash from Strep throat. Yes indeedy.

It turns out that I’m allergic to Strep Throat.

Perfect.

“Look! Look right here!”, he pointed to HIS manual of Every Horrendous Rash Ever (what IS IT about me that makes doctors think I’m up for seeing that business???).

Strep_Missindeedy

My poor Sweetman doesn’t know whether it will make me happier to love on me or to not touch me all. My Sweetboy is “too worried that I’ll catch it, mama!”, to let me love on him.

But, as usual, God got the last laugh in this situation because Sweetgirl? The one who I could use just an ever-so-teensy break from? She’s all over me.

Like a rash.

Me Neither

You know that moment when you are reprimanding your five-year old for over-dramatizing her cough so as to freak her brother out with a pending pretend puke and in that moment where you are showing her what you do not want her to do, you gag yourself?

Me neither.

You know that facebook status update where you share with The Lord and all His people that you had left-over birthday cake for lunch and are happy about it? But then, the next day, you come down with Strep and jokingly hop back on to tell folks that it was the cake’s fault, but then people agree and provide you with information about how sugar depresses the immune system and now you feel like dirt on top of feeling like mud?

Me neither.

Have you ever had The Sick so bad that your husband had to come home mid-day and your quirky child refused to be on the same side of the house with you for fear that he would “catch” whatever you had? And you start thinking that if a Big Disease is ever in your future, it’s going to be awful hard to love on a child that insists on remaining 135 feet away from you at all times and so you start crying and praying that never happens all while it feels like a spiky golf ball is stuck in the back of your throat?

Me neither.

That moment that your husband rounds the corner with a steaming bowl of soup broth and his iPad and a tv tray so that you can watch your favorite comedy while sipping merciful goodness to soothe your sore throat and your heart swells with gratitude for the gift of this man and you love him more now than you ever did, but as you are thinking that and getting emotional, your throat threatens to revolt by making it so that you can never ever swallow again, so you have to squash the thought for pain’s sake?

Me neither.

You know that beautiful moment when your medication finally kicks in and you can slip off into blissful slumber?

Yeah. That.

 

I Like To Guzzle Hot Tea

After it has completely cooled and almost every positive effect has worn off, I like to guzzle hot tea. Clarification – it is good.

Sweetman decided, approximately 12 months ago (not that I’m keeping track – because love never does that), to introduce a cup of hot green tea to our evenings together.  And he was determined to add it to both of our nightly routines.

I must give him props for this.  He married the girl who is also in love with The Devil Dog (Oh, my sweet Devil Dog – you have finally returned to me!) It was a mighty undertaking on his part.

I wasn’t sold on the idea, at first.  I mean, we’re talking about something that threatened to come between me and my other nightly ritual, which is decidedly unhealthy.  Not on my watch, people. Not. On. My. Watch.

Not one to give up easily, however, Sweetman made himself two cups each night and plunked one just close enough to me that I could easily grab a hold of it, should I get the wild hair to do so.

He’s wily, that one.

You see, he also assailed me with articles and studies about the benefits of drinking hot green tea.  Of course, he knew good and well that he had me from the moment he explained how a cup of green tea can potentially erase the negative effects of one of my beloved Devil Dogs.

I wisely decided to give the hot green tea a go.

And, SHOCKER! I didn’t hate it. (I try to keep things positive around here.)

So now, I sometimes have two cups of green tea a day, depending on the kind of day it’s been.  Some of you know exactly what I’m talkin’ about here, don’t you! I did the math, you see.  1 devil dog + 1 cup of green tea = 0(Aren’t my math skills somethin’?)

To recap, a steaming cup of hot green tea is set before me each night by the one who loves me.  And, my heart is forever grateful.

Yes indeedy.

tea_and_devil_dogs_missindeedy

Are you a tea drinker?  Got any delicious flavors or brands to share? I’m all ears… now. 

Exercising Together

big_little_sneakers_blog

The yoga pants and I are gettin’ tight again.  Sorry, what I really mean, is that they are getting tight again.  When you find yourself spending five minutes workin’ up a sweat just trying to wrangle on last years jeans, you know something’s gotta give.  And, unfortunately, the spandex in my jeans has about given me all it’s got.

Y’all! This winter is about to do me in!

So, I’ve begun the exersizzle regime. Again.

Only, this time?  My Sweetgirl has taken up exercising with me.

And I have proof.

Enter, exhibit A:

Exersizzle_ing_blog

May I explain?

1) I am quite pink and apparently wear a red cheer-leading bow on top of my hair to exercise.  (I do get very red, but I draw the line at wearing a bow over 40.)

2) My not-quite-five year old likes to dance on table tops behind my back. (She does not. Unless, of course, the coffee table counts. She likes to be “as tall as mama.”)

3) We let butterflies roam free in our house. (We do not. Sorry.  I know. That would be pretty exciting, but I think dancing on coffee tables is enough excitement, no?)

4) A purple person in a box watches us exercise. (Nope. But, I do exercise to DVDs. Which, obviously, I follow along with on the TV. But our TV is not purple. Nor is the Instructor.  Although, that would be interesting, wouldn’t it?)

My little shadow likes to proclaim how “tired from all the ‘sizing”she is about four minutes in.  I do too. But, alas, I must be the adult and keep going.  I’m trying to show her how important exercise is.  And, I can’t do that if I punk out and grab a can of salt-n-vinegar Pringles snack with her.

Wait! Can I?

No. I know. Sigh…

So, she usually grabs a snack and watches me finish out the last 40 minutes.  I suppose it’s kind of like watching the Biggest Loser. But, in real life.  And up close and personal.

But, I will prevail.  I refuse to buy the next size up jeans.

And, it would be nice to be able to wriggle in to my current ones without so much effort.

So, if you need me, I’ll be workin’ up a sweat while my back-up dancer Sweetgirl does, too, on the coffee table behind me.  Because, everyone knows exercising together is way more fun.

Yes indeedy!