Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wellness Wednesday

So, my last weight situation examination I had come to the conclusion that I need to work harder.  And I have been. 


Not hard.

I have restrained my eating a lot more, but not so much I feel like I won't be able to maintain those healthy eating patterns. 

I haven't really exercised as much, just yoga, not even weights, but more treadmill...a little more.

No change in weight (well, not that I count, as it fluctuates the same 3 lbs back and forth).

In some ways I feel better about my weight just because I'm not being a glutton sloth anymore.  I know I could value my health a little more than 3 donuts in 2 days (even though it was within my tighter calorie allowance).

So, I'm still feeling I should work harder, but maybe not as hardcore as I was feeling I needed to be a few weeks ago.  Despite the lack of change on the scale, I am happier with my attitude towards my weight and weight related habits now, and I wasn't then.

And besides, it's Spring! And the ice and snow is almost gone from the sidewalks (yes it's almost April and we still have to contend with snow and ice!).  And that means YAY! more walks outside!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Living with Less

Living with less has been something I've been working my way towards....slowly (OK, very slowly) but surely.  Only increasing our standard of living if it actually costs us the same or less, not just automatically increase with raises (not that Sean has received a raise in 3 years anyway).  At every opportunity reducing our bills, not increasing them, even if it's just a little at a time. So far it hasn't really resulted in less, maybe just smarter, living....but I hope I'm training us to one day be able to easily live with much less.

Then, there is a whole other 'living with less' we're learning about in the Justice Journey our Church is taking us on. Justice has many faces around the world, one of the huge injustices of the world is poverty (did you know just how often the Bible mentions caring for the poor?), and that is a big part of this journey, especially since we have a team who just landed at our Swaziland care point this week. 

Now I, like a lot of other people I'm sure, sends $30 a month to a kid who's picture is on my fridge and think I was doing my part for the world's billions of starving people. The needs of over half the world are just so overwhelming I feel like I can't really make an impact, and my giving the equivalent of 'a coffee per day' is probably more to make myself feel like I am obedient to "for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat."  Then I can feel OK about changing the channel when World Vision commercials came on. Enter *grimace* here.

You've all seen those commercials, or received the emails, with statistics on the distribution of wealth around the earth.  10% of the world has 85% of the world's wealth.  If you live in North America that automatically puts you in that 10% (statistically speaking). That doesn't really seem to mean a lot to us though, especially when we have richer people around us to compare our finances to, there is always someone who has more than us. We park our old cars next to the brand new SUVs at the store, we brown bag it while our co-workers eat out for lunch everyday, we work overtime on long weekends to pay off debt while our neighbor drives their RV out to the lake, we spend our money on house repairs instead of the tropical vacations our friends are on.

But if you are reading this, you have more than 4 billion people, at least.

Pick out 3 people out of the seven in this picture.

Those 3 people represent the fraction of the world living on approximately $2 per day (Sean and I live on $85/day - $42 each - by comparison; no savings, no investing, no fun money, just bills/surviving).

These people are lucky if they have one meal per day, consisting of approximately; 1 cup rice, 1 cup beans, one spice/flavoring, a couple of tablespoons of vegetables, salt, oil, a little flour, and water (maybe clean, maybe not).

Pick out 1 person out of the six in this picture.

That person represents the fraction of the world living on approximately $1 per day. That's on top of the 3/7ths of the world already living on $2 day.  That's 60% of the world living on $2 or less per day!

18,000 children die from starvation every day, that's the death toll from a tsunami every other day.

Now, in a way, this makes my $30/month feel like I'm providing a fortune! I could be increasing their standard of living by 50-100%!  My giving used to feel like a drop in a bucket, however, I've realized a drop in bucket can have a huge splashing impact (5 loaves & 2 fish). But that isn't the point.  The point isn't to make me feel better about how little I I can go on ignoring those commercials.  I won't pretend I've got it all figured out, but here is some of what I HAVE figured out.
The point should be these are people, not numbers.

photo credit - my friend - Doug Rempel, pictured here

The point should be these are people, not charity projects.

photo credit Doug Rempel

The point should be to partner with these people, not throw money their way.

Justice - def'n - everything I long for equally available to everyone (as defined by my pastor, Todd, pictured here).

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Why Me?

Why was I...

born in a part of world that favors the colour of my skin and the doctrine of my faith?

born into a society that doesn't diminish my rights based on my sex or wealth?

born in a land where clean water and huge varieties of food are in abundance, excess even?

born in a country founded on freedoms and choices, not oppression?

born in a community of prosperity and systems ensuring the welfare of the poor?
born into affluence where physical health is priority vs perilous?

born into a family free of the cycle of abuse and/or addiction?
born to a father and a mother who as husband and wife planned to have me and love me?
born into a definition of justice that is; pathetic, apathetic, self-serving, destructive, situational, unequal, inadequate.

"do justice, love mercy."

Friday, March 25, 2011

Friday Fill-ins

  1. You would think I'm pretty ungrateful (based on my last post) but really Envy & Justice are hot topics at Church and my Boundaries course lately, and I'm just journalling through some feelings it's bringing up (I'm the opposite of envious in tomorrow's post ;).
  2. How the heck did I end up with so many shoes under my desk at work!
  3. I dream about people, I rarely am alone in my dreams (even when I want to be! don't you hate that bathroom dream where all the stalls don't have doors!)
  4. I like to collect everything! but I'm behaving lately, I've limited my collections to pretty boxes and unique perfume bottles (no, I don't count books, clothes or Stampin' Up! products, only essentially useless items are 'collections' ;).
  5. Something I hope people think of when they think of me is that I'm loving.
  6. Like: listening to my new worship songs I downloaded Love: singing them on top of my lungs
I copied a variety of Fill-ins from various "Friday Fill-ins" prompts, as I usually only like a few of the questions per week, but here is where to find some Friday Fill-ins for yourself.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Fabulouso Fritos

Ok, so I'm getting pretty adventurous with my meals lately, not really sure why, but inspiration hits and I've been running with it! Last week I posted about my Italian cooking discoveries, this week it's Cuban.

The inspiration for this exotic cooking adventure was actually this marinade hubby picked out at the grocery store a few months back, Cuban Garlic Lime.
Now, we had absolutely no clue what Cuban flavor was, not in the least, but it sounded interesting. However, interesting paired with my occasionally lazy cooking habits made for a 'ho-hum, somewhat edible' baked chicken in pure marinade. I tried a little variety, with more garlic and lime, but just couldn't make it taste good.

Then, I was using up some honey, adding it to some other chicken marinades (like BBQ sauce & honey...mmm) I was throwing in the freezer, when I thought of adding honey to the Cuban marinade, balancing the sour/bitter with some sweet, so I poured 1/2 cup honey and 3/4 cup marinade in a ziplock with two chicken breasts.  Then, when I pulled it out the day I cooked it, I drained all of the marinade rather than cooking in it as well, rather I cut up the meat, sauteed it about a tablespoon of oil and teaspoon of chopped garlic, and when there was hardly any pink left on the chicken, I put in about a tablespoon of lemon vodka and simmered on medium until the liquid reduced and the chicken was nice and brown.

Turns out I made my own variation of what's known in Cuba as Pollo Frito. This I discovered when I decided to look up ideas for a Cuban sidedish to go with my Cuban chicken. That's where I found the yummy side known as Boniatos Fritos, or fried sweet potato....mmmm! So I cut up some sweet potatoes into fry shaped pieces, leaving the peel on, which is my preference, and then added in some julienne carrots (cut on the bigger side), and deep fried them in about 3 tablespoons of oil, sprinkling some salt as well.

Well, I have to say I am quite impressed with my improvisational Cuban cooking because this meal was magnífico!! The chicken turned out with a really great blend of the flavours. I'm definitely adding this entire meal to my cookbook, just had to document it here before I forget though....and to share with you my adventures in cooking (and pretty simple cooking at that!).

By the way, here is a great place/blog to check out more homemaking and house-wifery!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

so after I wrote Mundane Monday last week I stumbled across Miscellany Monday, much more fun and bloggy official :)

~ I started work on the design of my next tattoo while I had my faith symbol touched up (yes 13 months after I had it done....busy artist, so that's why I snuck in a consult on my next one).

~ scored FRONT ROW tickets to see two country artists hubby and I have really wanted to see, Aaron Pritchett and Gord Bamford.

~ seemed to have hit a road block on my memorizing Philippians, got first chapter 95% memorized, just can't seem to fit even the first verse of the next chapter in this ol' brain of mine...grrr!

~ am getting excited to start planting seeds inside soon for my potted garden

~ we're debating cute lil' doggy sitting until July, I just have to work on hubby a little more ;)

~ am no longer as determined to vacation in Vegas this year, I know it will be fun but there, and that it will be hot, and cheap, but there are other places that could be fun for just as cheap, right? debating Chicago now, maybe Houston, a few places that are easier for hubby's best friend to meet us at but are still interesting places we've never been to.

~ ran one of my 'big dreams' by Sean the other day, relating to a possible ministry at Church and he totally has the same passion, we're now talking about how we can bring this to fruition in our own Church! so exciting!
~ I'm so in love with the Roots zip up sweaters I found at Costco, for $16!! that I bought five *blush*. But I'm always feeling too cold or too warm, needed some nice, versatile, layering sweaters and these were perfect for both work and casual wear, I just needed one in every colour!

~ I've been having a really good time mentoring a table at our Church's Boundaries course, seeing people opening up and really beginning to desire change and healthy relationships, and also re-learning it myself. mentoring this time around has been much easier.

~ we finally bought a really nice dishwasher and it's getting installed next weekend, yay, no more handwashing dishes!!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

These messages brought to you by....

I'm not prone to 'commercials' I just had to share this amazing find with everyone! A fabulous little store  in my neighborhood, called Savoire Faire.

And it's not just because it's a really good friend of mine's aunt who owns the store (whose aunt is also an aquaintence of mine).

And it's not just because she asked my sister Tami to sell her lovely crocheted hats on consignment in the store. *Look for Trims & Brims by Tami Friesen*

And it's not just because she's giving a platform to my Stampin' Up! home decor decals on the walls of her store.

Seriously, if I had a fortune, I'd be spending it there, the little treasures, and big, all made by Canadian, mostly Manitoban, artists! So far, here are some of my fav finds!

Tree of Life necklace - this picture barely does it justice

 And this little purse (yes I like trees!)

You really must swing by, and tell her Lori sent you!

Friday, March 18, 2011

New Look

So, considering I like changing my IRL (in real life) looks a lot, I found it interesting I hadn't changed up my blog appearance for awhile, especially being that I love playing with my digital crafts so much! So I thought it was high time for a change.

I actually received some inspiration from my mom who received an email ad for this book, and I thought that was a lovely design and it inspired me to create my new look.  Hope you like!

Pardon the look - Under construction

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day

So, for someone who is neither Irish nor likes beer (never mind green beer), St. Patty's Day has a pretty special place in my heart.

It started when I was about 10-11 years old when two things happened.  The first was, we moved to Manitoba and therefore closer to my extended family, including my grandma who was born on March 17th and who's favorite colour was green.  My memory is a bit foggy, I don't even recall for sure if grandma really celebrated St. P's day even, but in my mind I've always connected her with it since then.
This is the first ring I picked out of her jewellry when she passed away (all us female children and grandchildren were able to pick our favorite pieces from her collection), because I remember her wearing it often and it reminded me of her birthday.
I try to wear this as often as I remember on St. P's day.

The next event that happened around that time was, since my dad had a new job in Manitoba he now had a conference every year that happened on St. P's day weekend and so me and my sisters were babysat my a young couple in our Church at the time, and he was Irish, like directly from Ireland just a few years before (and has moved his family back since). He and his wife would make us the most delightful green meal every year, green mashed potatoes, peas, green kool-aid, cupcakes with green icing, it was fantastic! It's been a tremendously fond memory, of both them and the fun celebration, that I've treasured since. 

I've tried in my own way almost every year since then to make St.P's day a fun celebration.  However, since my grandma passed away just before her 84th St. Patrick's day, the day has brought a twinge of sadness and I haven't made such a big deal of it since 2005.  But last year, when it came and I completely forgot until I was teased about not wearing green I realized I didn't want to lose that celebratory feeling each March 17th, especially since now it should be a celebration of the life my grandma had. So, today I am rockin' the leprechaun look, wearing grandma's ring, and I bought some St.P's day goodies for my office, enjoying the old memories and making new ones :)

Wishing you all a little luck and lots of green fun today!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Wordless(ish) Wednesday

Some cuteness I get to shower my nieces and nephews with, great deals at Costco = spoiling aunty :)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Italian Job

I am a big fan of all food Italian, Olive Garden is one of my fav restaurants, you could give me just about anything on that menu and I'd love it.  My own Italian Jobs (jobs=dishes) at home though have been pretty boring...ground beef, marinara sauce, mushrooms, pick-a-pasta, cheese....same ingredients, different varieties.  Until now!

Lately I've discovered the joys of using Italian sausage (mild, ground) instead of ground beef.  I mean, hello, making an Italian dish SHOULD include Italian sausage! It's great since you don't need to add ANY spice, it is already deliciously pre-spiced! Time saver, *Like*!  Also, less fatty than ground beef (except for really lean) since it's made with pork.  Healthier, also *Like*! 

Now, this has inspired me to get even more experimental with my Italian Jobs (IJs), adding more veggies! I've occasionally thrown in a few stewed tomatoes, or a sprinkle of onions, or spinach in my previous IJs, maybe some red peppers once, but I'm usually averse to more veggies than meat and sauce. So this time I decided my IJ was going to look more like Rachel Ray's than my own, I threw in onion, stewed tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms, roasted red peppers, green peppers (ack! I may start liking this veggie hated since childhood!), hardly any sauce, mostly just mixed it with juices from meat and from stewed tomatoes.

And then, the piece du resistance, I know RR, being a good Italian, likes to throw Pancetta in to a lot of her authentic IJs, so I fried up some bacon (basically a fattier, less smokey, version of the same) and tossed that into the pan as well! Hubby's going to love me! Simmered that all together for awhile and boy the smell was enough to drive me crazy.

The smell did not deceive, this was the best IJ I have made to date! Delish! I didn't even smother it all in cheese like I usually do (trying to save calories) and I barely even noticed I was missing cheese! Whoa! Even the extra juices at the bottom of the pan....I slurped them up *blush*. Those drippings would make for a most fabulous soup! I'll have to remember to make some soup with it next time :) Cause there is definitely going to be a next time!

By the way, here is a great place/blog to check out more homemaking and house-wifery!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Mundane Monday

Not a lot to share but here's just some random nothingness from the life of Lori.

~ it hasn't been nearly as difficult getting used to framed glasses again as I thought it would be.

~ gave up Facebook for lent this year, and instead of just sacrificing I am also adding something to enhance my spiritual walk, I'm continuing a 30 day challenge our church just had - the commitment to intentional prayer at least 10 min. per day 5 out of 7 days in addition to my normal chats with God and calls for help throughout the day. so I'll only see you there on Sundays (although I can see email notifications so I may answer back in email....and I didn't give up blogging in case you hadn't figured that one out yet ;)

~ my cousin's house was recently used to film a horror movie in B.C.....can't wait to find out the title cuz' I've gotta watch that!

~ another cuz (above cuz' brother)  is being interviewed on Dragon's Den.....we'll see if he actually gets on t.v. but his product is Beer Gut Body Wear.....some pretty funny shirts.

~started online prayer journalling with website, it's pretty cool and has helped me with my prayer challenge, especially with my internet addiction. I'm finally using that addiction against/for (??) myself (online prayer, online Bible, Bible study blog) to enhance my spiritual walk, haha!

~ new dish at Olive Garden - pear gorgonzola ravioli with shrimp....amazing! and it may cause funny sleep talking episodes as hubby mumbled and then clearly said 'gorgonzola!' and then back to mumbling, then sleeping silence.

~ I think something happened to the earth's gravity in the last day or so, I decided to try harder at weight loss this week, ate 1800 calories less than last week (and 1000 less than most of the weeks before), exercised 1 hr more, some of that even back on the treadmill (after a 3 week hiatus)! and what does the scale reward me with?!?! 4 lbs gained, what?!?

~ new message at Church started this Sunday about justice, tying into our care point in Swaziland....I'm actually excited about a beans and rice fast in a few weeks (fast is encouraged as part of the message series) and I think I'm also going to fast from all technology they don't have in Swaziland as well.

and on that note

~ I'm hating living without a dishwasher (I know, boo hoo me)

~ I'm loving my hubby, just cuz

~ I find it baffling that I had 24 blog visitors from Latvia in the last month!?! not to mention quite a few from Russia, China, Australia, Ukraine, and several more from Brazil, India and Poland. I'm perplexed and honoured :)

~ I REALLY miss the kidlings so I'm travellin' to Steinbach tonight to see them, glad the skies are clear because I'm going no matter what!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Perfect Posture

People do not naturally gravitate toward life long commitment, great communication, intentional decision to love regardless of reciprocation, humility, forgiveness, or daily consideration for the needs of a loved one above yourself, in other words, what it takes to have a successful marriage.

Yet, we attempt it anyway, we seek it out anyway.  With enough effort and perserverance, some reach marrital success.  What drives those people to make it work?  That kind of love is so rare that when it is found we are driven to do whatever it takes to make it last. The kind of love that can only be found in committment of that magnitude, the kind of love offers ultimate security, the kind of love that offers complete freedom in who you are, including the unwaivering belief in your potential and the the forgiveness of your failures.

Even with every proactive effort to sustain this love, going above what we give any other relationship, we are still imperfect and fail.  If you know this kind of love, then you know how aweful it feels to discover you have caused pain to your partner, it can feel like the worst kind of failure. I have felt it and sometimes I think it hurts me more than it hurts him. Despite your rock solid commitment, it can plant seeds of doubt that you created a crack in your foundation that could eventually lead to a rift, or worse.  You can begin to beat yourself up over it, detesting whatever it is in you that caused their pain, but that will lead you to make good changes.  It will spur you to learn and grow from that, cutting out that hurtful character, determined to patch up any weakness in that foundation and never to make that mistake again. Whatever it takes to make it last.

Strange how we can be driven to such devotion for an imperfect love with an imperfect person, yet a relationship with our perfect God  in his perfect love rarely seems to produce such results.

"People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord."
—D.A. Carson

Our human relationships are love-driven, we give something tangible and we get something tangible back. But in the absence of the physical, the measurable, how can we succeed at a relationship with God on a love-driven basis, when the love is much more abstract? And that's why I feel this quote is bang on, we have to be grace-driven to reach the same kind of devotion to God, because even though God's grace can't be quantified, it is something we can qualify.

As a society we have such a poor understanding of what 'good' truly is that by comparison our definition of 'bad' is equally watered down. But only God is good. That means the rest of us who aren't God, yup, you guessed it, that makes us bad. So, if we think of every bad action we've had to forgive, or be forgiven of, it is but a drop in the ocean of forgiveness God grants us daily, because our bad actions are in fact every single thing we choose to do apart from him.  You may love many people whom you have had to forgive, but do you love and forgive every single person who has ever hurt you, and for every hurt they have ever inflicted on you?  God does.  A simple comparison of our own efforts in forgiveness proves the immeasurable grace God showers on us.

His grace, the perfect security, the perfect acceptance, the perfect faith, and the perfect redeemer.  If we let it drive us that is.  Will we let the depth of that grace devote us to the same quest for a solid relationship with Christ? The same commitment to change anything necessary to stay close to the one you love?

As the first Martin Luther tried to get the Church to see nearly 500 hundred years ago, repentence should be the whole life of the faithful, not an afterthought. "When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said “Repent,” he intended that the entire life of believers should be repentance." Repentance is to be the Christian’s continual posture.  Hundreds of years later and we still don't really understand repentence. Maybe it's in the way we define it?

Until recently I've associated repentence with regret or remorse, which are both reactive....they happen after the wrong doing, and quite frankly they are a bit passive, they don't really require any action. But our pastor studied the origins of the word repentence and part of the meaning was to abhor the committed sin, and abhor means to regard with extreme aversion. Now that's taking action, being compelled to proactively avoid sin!

Does sin make you go 'oops!' or 'never again'? Will you hope for better luck with temptation next time, or will you cultivate a loathing for all that is apart from God?  If we can take a stance against that which threatens our marriages, we can posture ourselves to protect our commitment to our groom, Jesus Christ.

The only way I know how to even begin assuming that posture permanently is on my knees. And this is my prayer:
O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Top Ten Thursdays - 10 things you want to renovate/change in your home

 Since I have a list of big and small things I want to do in my home, here is a list of each :)

Small Changes (couple hundred $ or less):
1. Re-frame the windows, not only are they old and disintegrating, we've got white breasted nuthatches trying to making hatches for their nuts!
2. Touch up all the small chipping paint bits in the living/dining/kitchen areas.
3. Finish the decor for my upstairs bathroom, just waiting for one frame to be finished, then for Sean to hang them all.

4. Hang the two collage frames I received for Christmas, all the pictures are in, just need my handy man to hang it.
5. Remove the bush in the back corner of our garden, it's attracting weird, flat, red bugs (not to be confused with pretty ladybugs) that eat all the foliage. Plus, I want that pit of dirt for composting :)
6. Plug up the garden and try growing my garden in several large pots this year instead, in preparation for the patio in my next list :)
7. Add a word art vinyl to one of my walls, just not entirely sure of the words or the wall yet, haha.

8. Manoeuvre a downspout to avoid my lilac tree (the one I just discovered I had last year, until then was going to yank it!) and direct it into a rain barrel, over the old garden.
9. Get a standup freezer rather than a chest freezer, all the stuff buried on the bottom get's forgotten and I hate reaching way down into the depths of the coldness.
10. Move my craft space upstairs from the basement, so that I'm not feeling so far away from everything going on in the busy part of the house, and can get more crafting done without bringing a quarter of my craft room upstairs/per project. Kinda dependent on a big project though, also on my next list.

Big Changes (several hundred $ or more):
1. Replace our dishwasher that just went kaputz.
2. A new, big, flat screen t.v.  Been wanting something bigger than a 26" for several years now, but will also need a new t.v. stand to go with since our current one is modular and each open space is 26" or smaller.

3. Put down a complete brick patio over half our yard, the brick would replace our current trecherous sidewalk, the make-shift back porch, house a BBQ pit, and maybe even become a half-fence. I want to surround it with some solar patio lanterns, oooh pretty. Then my potted garden can be positioned anywhere on the patio :) Got the idea from Buccacino's and Fude in Osborne Village.

4. Replace my kitchen cabinets with roll-out drawers, what a much better use for the space! Had them at our old house, especially for such deep cupboards, much more efficient for stacking and retrieving.
5. Put in a fancy double sink with accessories like filtered water on tap, hot water faucet, a straining insert, and all that fun.
6. Replace kitchen counter tops to a much more pretty and suitable material, I'm thinking a brown stone of sorts. Right now it's a cheap, dark grey top that every scratch and piece of dust is visible on.
7. Creating a new storage space in the room my craft room occupies currently, replacing the old storage room downstairs to make room for another big change.
8. Renovating to move the laundry room into the current downstairs bathroom area, to accomodate the next big change.
9. Move master bedroom downstairs, renovating to create a wall between the exercise area and den area and forming a huge master bedroom, a large walk-in closet in the current storage area, and a master ensuite bathroom in the current laundry room. Finally, room for a tub I can fit in!!

10. A new, heated, over-sized double garage, but only because we want to build an apartment above it to rent out.  Have a BIL who really needs a safer yet afforadable place to live and would love to help him out in this way, but also renting out an apartment has also been one of those things on my 'dreamer' list.

What things do you dream about changing in your home?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Now and Then

Just for kicks, a look back at the tranformation of the exterior me over the last 4 years.

June 2007

May 2008

January 2009

January 2010

March 2011

Monday, March 7, 2011

The OK Corral

I heard about a syndrome last weekend that has to do with people's ability to achieve great feats, it's called the OK Plateau, where we become content/satisfied with an 'ok' result and then just plateau there.  It was actually at Church and our pastor was applying this to our spiritual lives, although he was using an example of brain Olympics where people try to memorize accomplishments like reciting a whole deck of randomly ordered cards in 62 seconds (or something like that) and how these people don't have photographic memories and they aren't savants, but they can accomplish magnificent feats by pushing past the OK Plateau. He said it doesn't take super Christians to become more righteous, the key is being able to Do Hard Things, pushing past the 'just ok' spirituality (he wasn't referring to the book I linked, but too funny I have this book on my shelf, been wanting to read it for a few years, just haven't got around yet).

Since this principle happens in all areas of life it actually hit me on the head that this is where I am at with my  weight too.  Worse than a plateau, I feel like I am 'corraled' into my ok-ness, like I'm trapped by the same lack of motivation I had before my big gain and big loss.The whole reason I had the will power to drop 28 lbs was huge health factors, the expense of plus sized clothes, the big lack of energy, and giant chasms it created in my self-confidence, but even after some hiccups in ALL motivation, and gaining 8-12 lbs back (it keeps fluctuating the last 8 months), the same motivators no longer exist.  I know if I completely slack off they will come back, so I have that motivation to maintain, I'm at a pretty good consistent calorie and activity level, but I've become ok with 'just healthy/energetic/attractive enough'.

Even with new tools, like Lose It, participating in weekly motivators to commit to one healthy change for just a week, daily commitment to daily yoga & weights, I just can't get motivated to try the necessary amount of harder.  My calorie allowance is only 50-250 per day higher than the allowance I had when I really shed the pounds.  My exercise amount for the week is only 30-70 minutes less than the height of my fitness.  I just can't find the reasons to try that much more for so much less. And it makes me feel like I'll be trapped at this weight forever.

The other thing about 'ok' in weight is that eventually it is healthiest to be ok with your weight.  Unlike spirituality, there is such a thing as pushing yourself too far, having a focus and effort on your weight that is unhealthy.  I know that I'm no where near danger of going too far, but, what if I'm not THAT far off...what if it is ok to be just shy of this weight?  BMI is not a completely reliable tool because it doesn't account for my thicker bones and the weights I do that add to my muscle mass.  Size is not much better, as height has a lot to do with how you look at a size.  So, what do I use to tell me I need to break free of this corral, or be content with how much I have tamed my health?

Of course, the only reliable gauge is God. Right now, I'm pretty sure he wants me to value my body a little more than I do right now. Well then....that means *deep sigh* it's time to move on to doing hard things.
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