Thursday, March 15, 2018

Weight Watchers: Not Giving Up

I won't lie to you: losing weight consistently has been challenging. Life has been challenging. This week I realized that there will never be an easy pass given to me. I have to make this work for me. No matter what happened in the past, I decided not to give up on my goals. 

Most of the success I obtained came because I decided not to give up. This week, I decided to succeed. I can't rely on a program to help me succeed. I certainly can't rely on exercise either. The only person that can help me succeed is myself. 

I had some crazy thoughts on what I should do to make the scale go down consistently. I thought about doing the starvation diet. Then I remembered how much it hurts and how that would not help me on the long term. I thought about juicing. Then I remember how much I like chewing. I'd chew the contents of a juice bottle quicker than I'd agree to drink it for days on end. I decided a long time ago that the issue I need to fix is rooted in self-control. I want to be great at it. I want to be able to walk away from temptation because of it. I know it is achievable. I just have to stay the course. 

The past few weeks (months? more like year...) have been the demonstration that I can maintain a certain weight. The next few weeks, months, year will be the demonstration that I can be successful at reaching my healthy weight.  I just have to finish what I started.

* I thought about going to meetings instead of doing WW online. I simply do not have the time. I decided to stick with online and I've been relying on a few Podcasts to keep my motivation going. One of them is the Cut the Fat Podcast and the other one is Whys Advice with Fat Dagg. I've been listening to the first one for 7 years or so and I recently discovered the second one. There are others, but these guys have been consistent in making new podcasts available. 

Goal for the week: Track 7 days with the ww app. Exercise at least 4 times.
Start Weight: 175 lbs
{Goal Weight:} 136 lbs
{{Current Weight}}: 166.8 lbs

Previously in this Series:
• Transitions 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Jealousy during Spring Break

I am guilty of being jealous of other people. Spring Break is often when I realize this guilt. Here I am, preparing myself for a trip to the Goodwill to drop-off some donations when I see pictures of my friends' fabulous vacations on social media.

I do wish it was me, smiling in those pictures. I'm quickly slapped back to my senses as I remember God's standards for me. The life I choose to live make no provisions for long-term jealousy.

Last Saturday, those standards grabbed me by the heart. I stopped whatever I was doing (coveting my friends' vacations) and I said a prayer like this: "God I confess my sin and I repent from being jealous of my friends. Bless my friends and their families. May they always experience your very best."

I can honestly say that the rest of the week has been very pleasant. I have even been able to look at people's vacation photos without jealousy. Thanks to God, what I am experiencing is joy in my heart for them.

Let me back it up and tell you how this whole process works with me.

The Bible I read so much has a lot to say about how I should live my life. Every time I hear or experience jealousy, I'm instantly convicted by the holy words that live hidden in my heart. I began to heed to the voice of God every time my own heart became jealous of others. I was convinced that jealousy was not God's best for me. I made the decision to repent and move on to God's best instead.

This stuff is not magic. It has taken some time but I am at a place where I want God's best in every area therefore I follow His purpose for every area of my life. It is about choices. God gives me choices and I am choosing His word.

Jealousy is a "sometimes" problem for me. I have learned to take my "all the time" problems to a different level of accountability. If I or someone close to me discerns that I am having an issue all the time, I have learned to submit myself to Godly council so that I can have an extra level of accountability and guidance in the area. The goal is to get to freedom from the issue, which is God's best for me.

I would give you a bunch of scriptures to back up what I have learned to be God's standards for me. I won't because I believe that it is more effective that you read it for yourself and discover freedom your own terms. What I know for sure is that jealousy is toxic. Drinking a small amount of poison is still deadly. I want God's best, no matter how uncomfortable my flesh gets in the process.

Jealousy may not be your problem my friend. I do wonder if you have a different "sometimes" problem God wants to fix. He is brilliant in bringing freedom to our places of bondage. I pray you make room for His brilliance today.  

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Lent with Kids: chocolate cross

"Are we going on an Easter Egg hunt?" my little one asked excited.
I rolled my eyes but I unrolled them when I remember that chocolate for Easter really made me happy as a child.
I gave her the best answer I had at the moment.
"Sure, we'll find one. Just remember that the reason for Easter is found in the Bible."
You could see her little brain turning.

We don't celebrate Lent as most people do, yet, I jump on any bandwagon that encourages me to seek Jesus' truth. 
This year, one of my friends sent me a printable lent calendar and we've been using it. 
The goal this year is to read all the stories surrounding the resurrection of Jesus with the kids.
The goal is also to teach them to find new facts they didn't know before. I'm teaching them to learn something from the text every time we read it.

chocolate crosses 
40 days of lent is a long time, even for adults. 
The calendar helps us to see how closer we are to Easter. 
The Bible stories help us to get our info straight from the source. That's right, I'm not using a special book because I am hoping to teach Bible literacy. I also hope to take away any hesitation the kids might have to reading the Bible for themselves. 

I went to my favorite chocolate store last week and I saw they had an Easter corner. I couldn't resist buying chocolate crosses. 
I didn't want to wait until Easter to give them to the kids. After we read a Bible passage, I asked them to close their eyes and think about what they read. 
When they opened their eyes, I said, "remember that each passage we read, leads to an empty cross." 
They were super excited to get the chocolate. 

Growing up in Brasil, we got huge chocolate eggs filled with truffles for Easter. I miss those days. I'm glad it's okay to be both a Jesus lover and a chocolate lover. Haha! 
Here's the moral of the story: I will teach Bible literacy and insert a little fun here and there. Jesus will for sure take are of the rest. 

How do you celebrate lent with your kids?

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Dia Internacional da Mulher 2018

Minha mãe em sua formatura.
Ser mulher em 2018 é bem popular.
As notícias sobre o movimento "Time's Up" e as ações de justiça pela dignidade da mulher, ajudou essa popularidade na mídia.
Todo 8 de Março, eu lembro dos ensinamentos da minha mãe.
Ela sempre nos dizia, "parabéns mulher"! e como criança, essas palavras me faziam pensar no significado do que é ser mulher.
Além de palavras, o exemplo da minha mãe me ajudou muito a entender o que é ser mulher.
Eu aprendi que minha rocha é Cristo Jesus. Sem Ele, a vida não faz sentido.
Aprendi que ter dignidade vem de dentro, e não de fora. Mesmo como criança eu vi um exemplo de dignidade, perseverança e fé na vida da minha mãe.
Hoje em dia, eu tento passar os mesmos valores cristãos para as minhas filhas e pro meu filho.
Minha oração é pra que minha vida possa refletir a minha fé em Deus.
Minha esperança é de que no futuro, eu veja a reflexão de Cristo na vida das minhas filhas e do meu filho.
E você, quem te influenciou e te ensinou a ser mulher?
Hoje é um bom dia para agradecer e dizer, "parabéns mulher"!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Spring Break Staycation ideas

Spring Break is quickly approaching in this side of the world (yes!). Here are a few ideas for you.

Log on to the Cheapo sites - there are a million out there. Every city has a resident writer who does all of us a favor and looks for the deals and freebies. A word of caution is that some sites are completely for advertisement purposes so do what’s best for your family.

Make a list and check it twice - our family has a mental list of place we’d like to go. One of them is a famous Ethiopian restaurant. The kids keep asking about it so that will be on my list of things to do. Writing things down guarantees that you will have plenty options for the question what should we do today.

Get some rest - Remember how tired you were during the holidays and after they were over? Spring break week is a good time to rest. Sleep in. Take a siesta. Give your brain a break from the news cycle. It is important to feel recharged after Spring Break. Your health always benefits from rest. 

Declutter - If you have an area of your home that’s driving you nuts, Spring Break is a good week to Declutter. You don’t have to Declutter your whole house. Even if all you do is to switch your kids wardrobes from winter to Spring, count it as a win.