Friday, November 30, 2012

Will You Join Me?

December Photo a day Challenge copy

Sometimes I think about what my parents generation ever did before Facebook, Pinterest, Etsy, Instagram, etc. I mean seriously. How did people keep up with everyone? How did they make parties really pretty and come up with new recipes and such? This is the total millennial coming out of me right now. 

Anyway I was pinning the other day. Which by the way I love that term, pinning. My father-in-law asked me one day what in the world I was doing on my phone for so long. My reply...pinning. The confusion in his face still makes me laugh. So I was pinning and I came across this pin. Photo-a-day challenge, capturing December. What fun way to document my month! I am on board. 

So tomorrow I am going to begin my photo-a-day challenge. I am also going to get Zeb to do it and then compare our pictures at the end of the month. I think it will be a fun way to see how different we see things. I know he will just love it! This is my sarcasm coming out. But he will do it because he loves me and well that is what you do when your married. 

So you should join too! If you do decide to participate than use #capturedecember so I can see your pictures too! 

Have a beautiful weekend! I am off to Florida on Sunday for a conference and will certainly be enjoying some wonderful beach time! 


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

December Challenge

 I love this time of year. I have probably mentioned that before. I love the music and the lights and the giving and the food. Oh how I love the food. I am telling you. I get weak for fudge, peppermint bark, heavy home cooked dishes. I love it all. You know what I don't love? The pounds. The "oh crap my jeans are a whole lot tighter feeling". So with Thanksgiving behind us and December only a few days a way, lets make a pact shall we? Are you ready?

Do some sort of physical activity for 30 minutes a day at least 21 days out of the 31 in December.

Did you get that? 5 days out of every 7 for the month of December MOVE for 30 minutes. Take a walk. Go for a run. Go to the park with your kid. Dust off Jillian Michaels. Do something!

Sorry I don't mean to yell.

If we can commit to movement over the next month, than we will be ahead of the game. We can laugh at the thousands of people rushing to the gym January 2nd to begin what we already started a month ago. And we might even have less to shave off because of it. Not only that, we can enjoy all those wonderful goodies people bring around this time of year even more. It feels much better to drink an entire shake when you know you burned that much in calories too. At least for me it does.

Are you in?

You can do it.

I believe in you. 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Redefine Your Connections

Social media is a funny thing. In fact the entire way technology has changed how people communicate and interact with one another is interesting. I think it is so strange that I can be "friends" with so many people on Facebook and yet very few of those individuals I would actually call friends. Yet, I want to be connected to them in that way. Whether it is an old friend that I really wish I still talked to or just someone I once knew that I like knowing how they are doing from time to time, on Facebook, I have LOTS of friends. 

I bring this up because it was social media precisely that presented the issue when life took a turn for the worst 2 weeks ago. I was talking to my Mom about it actually a few days after we lost the baby. I told her how strange it is because when we first found out we were pregnant it was exciting and it was easy to tell all my "friends" via facebook. However, when something like this happens. Something so tragic and not exciting, how do you tell those same friends? Who really wants to read a Facebook status about a miscarriage? I mean, it's awkward right? But, it's life and we are friends, right? 

I still haven't figured that out. Any of it really. How to tell people, friends, the sad things as easily as the happy things. How to not be friends with people who clearly have no interest in ever going to coffee with you or be involved with those kids lives you hope to have one day. How to truly have relationships outside of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and text messaging. Because when something like this happens, you crave relationships and not status updates. You crave hugs from people who really care and not just a thumbs up on the world wide web. You crave conversation and hearing the words that they care and understand. You crave life beyond a screen. 

I have learned a few things over the last two weeks. First, God's timing is everything. I have learned not to base whether you are ready for something on your age or where you are at or where your friends are at. God could still be seeding you to prepare you for your harvest when you are trying to push forward. How can you possibly experience the harvest without proper preparation? Secondly, relationships are so important. Not the Facebook kind. The kind your great-grandparents had. Because when life changes you via hardship it's the relationships that keep you going. When I feel that pit in my stomach thinking about what May 15th won't bring, it is my relationship with Christ that keeps me going. When I am crying at night before bed because I am sad, it is my relationship with my husband that calms me. When I want someone who gets me or to make me laugh, it is my relationship with my family. When I just want good girl talk because they don't judge me for just wanting to rant about how much this sucks, it is my relationships with my girlfriends. Relationships matter. They carry you through happiness and everything else that matters in this life. 

Maybe, today, call someone you haven't made the time for. Go to coffee with your sister. Rekindle that friendship you miss. Reach beyond the screen.    

"There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:"-Ecclesiastes 3:1

Friday, November 16, 2012

Life Will Change You

I wasn't sure if I would write about this, but I have felt an urge to get words down today about it. When life happens in a way you least expect and it hurts as bad as this does I don't know what the proper response is. How do you mourn? And how do you tell people without it being awkward? No one knows what to say and I don't expect anything profound. But I appreciate the heart, prayers, and love that is offered.

Monday was a sad day. We found out that we had lost the baby. It's heart had stopped beating a couple weeks ago. I knew it. I was more scared of the doctor confirming it than anything else. All the energy I had suddenly gained. The lack of pregnancy symptoms. I knew something was not right. But the second the doctor said became real. A reality I was most afraid of.

Since Monday I have thought a lot about why and how and what I could have done differently. The doctor was clear to make sure I understood it wasn't my fault. I have found comfort in words I needed to both hear and read from friends. Zeb has been INCREDIBLE in terms of support along with both sides of our family. It's the silence and the moments alone that hurt me. When the enemy creeps in and whispers lies. When I am fighting that internal battle of believing God's promises over Satan's lies. And it is a battle, even when I know that my God is good and his promises are real and above all else I have to trust in Him who works all things out for the good of those who love him.

So today I am doing what I can to find the joy. I am clinging to all I have to know that it will get better. That there will come a day when it doesn't hurt so bad. We can overcome this and we will with time. If there is 1 good thing that I can come away with, it is that I have never felt closer to Zeb than now. This week is by far the hardest week we have experienced to date and it has brought us the closest. I am thankful for that.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Running for the fun of it!

This last Sunday I ran my first half marathon. Most of you know I set out to complete this journey in January.  My initial plan was to run the 1/2 marathon in OKC. However, when Zeb got laid off in February we were immediately thrown into job search mode and ended up moving to Lubbock the weekend of the half. At the time I was mostly relieved because I had injured my knee on my first 10 mile attempt and to be honest was terrified of the half marathon.

Once we got settled in Lubbock, I immediately picked up running again. I found a local run club who I have fallen in love with and that made running easy. By the end of June I had done some searching and eventually decided I would run the Lady Speedstick half marathon in Phoenix. I thought it would be a great run given the time of year and I could see my family. I was committed in my head, but had not committed monetarily until literally 2 weeks ago. I had put off actually registering for a lot of reasons. I was scared. I didn't know what my doctor would think of running with a little one growing inside me and well I wasn't sure I could do it. I have overcome all of that!

My doctor thinks running is great for the baby and encourages it. Check! I overcame my fear at the start line. Check! I proved I could do it at the finish line. Check! One of my friends had told me it would be emotional at the end. I didn't believe her, but it turns out she was right. When I came around that corner and I saw my family on the side of the finish line and I heard all the noise of the music, it is all kind of a blur, but emotional I was! I felt so proud inside.

I finished in 2 hours 33 minutes and 6 seconds. I never stopped once the entire race. These are two things I am happy about. My longest distance prior to the race had been 11 miles. That was 2 weeks ago and it took me 2 hours and 25 minutes. I figured the race would take me about 2 hours and 50 minutes. Between the adrenaline of the race and the end of my first trimester though, I had picked up a little bit of speed. I felt great at the end and wasn't even too sore the next day. It was a great race!

To be honest, if you had told me 5 years ago I would run 13.1 miles someday and pregnant to boot I would have laughed in your face. I have never been a runner. I mean NEVER!! I remember dreading running in high school. It was something I had picked up in college and have just done progressively more of it over time. I have become passionate about exercise and the benefits it has in your life. Some days I can hardly believe I used to way 60 pounds more than I do now. Thanks to this race I now have the runner high, officially. I enjoy running. It is true. Even for 2 and a half hours. Yours may not be running, but I would encourage you to find that element of exercise that makes you feel better than ever before. For your health and for fun. You can do it. Start with 1 mile, 1 min, or whatever makes sense for you. Just start.

I have got some pictures from my phone. Enjoy!

Zeb dropping me off at 5:30am. I was so nervous at this point!

My bib! 

Thanks to my sweet, sweet husband for all of his support over the last 11 months! Post Race with my medal.

All my gear the night before!

1 of the 5 hills over the course of the race. This one was cake. 

This would be the 4th hill right after mile 10! I did not want to run up it. 

Oh and the last hill of the race after mile 11! Are you kidding me?!

Thanks to my beautiful sisters for going to the expo with me to pick up the packet! I was so excited and glad they were there to celebrate with me. 

Thanks to my wonderful parents for hosting a pasta party the night before my race. Carb loading and good times with good friends!

And waiting before the race started. 

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all my friends as well as my awesome family for all the support. I could not have done any of this or enjoyed the process so much with all of you!! I feel so so blessed. And thank you to my Lord and Savior for keeping me healthy along the way! It was the first of what I hope to be many more races to come! 

Happy hump day!