Monday, December 3, 2012

Spit and Polish Veneer

Ok, so I just completed 7 days of work in a row, with one lucky day off. And I am coming into the homestretch of my Transcultural Nursing Class, I never knew I could know so much about other cultures, and find nearly 30,000 words to write about it!

With that said, I still get a bee in my bonnet about this time of year. I am once again consumed by consumerism! I'm sickened by the way we spend and forget about the reason we have this wonderful holiday to begin with. I am just as guilty as the next person, believe me, that giant plank in my eye is still festering. I'm just determined to do something about it.

The problem is, I don't know what. 
But I do know it begins with me.

I have harped in the past about having too much stuff, buying things I don't need, selling things, giving to the poor, but the reality is that my life is so busy with other things (work, kids, school, cleaning, shopping :) etc.) that I don't ever get around to my good intentions. I do the same thing with God. I read the bible almost daily, and I am convicted by what I read, but aren't I just like those people in the bible that knew so much about the law and called themselves religious, but didn't live their lives that way? You know who I'm talking about, those Pharisees. 

I would venture to say that more of us live like that then those who actually practice what they read from the bible. Think about it...
At what point do we actually stop just reading the bible and start doing what it says??

I'm frightened by the church today.
I'm frightened by the heart of so many well meaning Christians.
I'm frightened by my own heart, and what I am teaching my children.
I'm frightened by how Jesus described the Pharisees to his disciples:

“The religion scholars and Pharisees are competent teachers in God’s Law. You won’t go wrong in following their teachings on Moses. But be careful about following them. They talk a good line, but they don’t live it. They don’t take it into their hearts and live it out in their behavior. It’s all spit-and-polish veneer."  
(Matthew 23:1-3 The Message)

Spit-and-polish veneer, 
that's what we are, 
I know that's what I am.

I want to be the real deal. Help me please, because I want to change, I want to evoke change in my family and in others. Let's do this together, I want to know your thoughts and ideas. 
How do we start the process of going back to the basics? Back to living the way Jesus said to live. Not just talking a good talk, but really living like Jesus did.


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Aren't we all hoarders?

 Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal.  Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be. 
Matthew 6:19-21


I am thankful for my family, my home, and never needing anything. I find it so hard sometimes to let go of the earthly things that I hoard and collect. I really think many of us buy things and save things because it satisfies some void in our lives. I get soooo caught up in the process of needing (wanting) stuff, that I can't see the forest for the trees. No, I am not a hoarder, my house is not packed with newspapers and books and rotting food from 1986, so much that I have to crawl through the door ways with only a 6 inch opening (true story from hoarders). Hoarders have some sort of psychological issue that they really can't get rid of things and they keep collecting things, but I wonder if most of us have some mild form of this too.

So my question to you is this:

Where are you storing your treasures? 

And what are you going to do with all of the extra stuff you have collected here on earth?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Good-bye my Beloved Enrique

Today is the anniversary of the death of my beloved Suburban #2, loving named Enrique (don't ask, the kids named it). 
As you may recall from a post several years ago, Suburban #1 burned up in a raging ball of fire. Actually, as I was driving home from work, I noticed that my butt was getting warm, and well it was August after all, so I ignored it. But my butt got hotter, so I thought that I must have accidentally hit the seat heater button. After going into the house and remembering that I left my bag in the car, I returned to find the entire car engulfed in smoke! So I did what any sane women would do, I ran inside and yelled for my husband to come help me! Need I say more.... 

Long story short, Suburban #1, Lady Kesha, was totaled.

Enrique met his death last year when we were on our way to church. A new driver, bless her heart, pulled out in front of us when she mistakened (I'm not sure that's a word) the gas pedal for the brake. We were all shook up, but no one was hurt badly.

There is irony here. We were on our way to a Dave Ramsey study. Financial Peace....

Dave doesn't like car debt, we had car debt. I was trying very hard to align my financial life in a way that honored God, with Dave's help. I had plans to quietly pay that car off and promise God I would never do it again. I wasn't thinking that God would just wipe that car right out of my life. But then again, who am I kidding, God almost always has to basically hit me over the head with things to get my attention. I was often labeled "testa duro"(hard head) by my Italian famiglia. So, he took the Suburban in one foul swoop! Gone! Totaled! So I started in a panic to look for another car to replace Enrique. And to no avail, I could not find one. I cried. I would have to give back the rental and drive the forbidden and disgusting Minivan, so aptly named The Grey Turd.

A year later, The Grey Turd and I are friends. It has gotten me everywhere I need to go, and it is paid off. That minivan is a reminder everyday of the fact that God is in control and is literally at the wheel of my life. I love the fact that it has a dent in every side and often tease my up and coming drivers that they will soon have the pleasure of driving it. You know how they love that :)

Thank you Jesus for my life, for my family, and for breaking me down every day so that you can build me back up to be more like you... Amen.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


At what point do you reach the end of yourself? One thing I know for sure is that God is forever in my lifetime on earth working with me. I used to think that I would someday attain this status of greatness never to go no more.. he was done with me ;) That's a lie I told myself, or perhaps it was the whispering of those little evil angels that whisper in our ears and try to convince us of the things that we really know deep down inside are not the right thing to think or do. One thing I know for sure is that God will NEVER, EVER, EVER be done with me.

So I have to look back at the path that I have traveled:
     I have lived in this tiny house since 2005, it was a panicked decision to buy this house, well, the divorce and other circumstances blinded my decision making process. With that said, I have never really connected with this house. In fact I really hate this house! I have always hated this house!! It's a dump in my eyes and somehow I think I have always felt it was below me to live in such a place. It was such a back step coming from my half a million dollar paradise off of Robious Road (if you are local, you know what I am talking about). Because I needed 4000+ square feet of living space with a husband, 3 kids and 2 dogs. I needed to keep up with the Jones-es and the Smith-es, and run around in my little tennis outfit when I picked up the kids from school even though I didn't really hardly play tennis, it was always about the outfit. I needed all that because I worked hard and earned it. I deserved this, this stuff. NOT. But those demon angels convinced me that I did, and so I did.
     Now I live on 10 acres in the middle of nowhere in a barely 2000 square foot house that is falling apart and often looks like Sanford and Son live with me, oops, no, that's just my husband. No wonder I still have boxes that I haven't unpacked in 7 years!
     So for seven years I have somehow been trying to makeup for my "misfortune". I have bought things to put band-aids on the mess I have made of my life. I think we are all caught up in this vicious cycle of making ourselves believe that we need things. I have used shopping and buying things as a way to heal myself, and the biggest revelation I have had has come straight from heaven.

God has kept me here in this stuck place until I change my ways.

My to do list:

1) Stop buying crap that I absolutely do not need, regardless of whether it is cute or I want it. Sorry, Cute Orange Purse all my friends have and I really, really, really want... you will have to wait until all my other 200 purses wear out. 

2) Give the extra crap AWAY! or sell it. 

3) Be content, and wait for God to show me the next step in my journey called life.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


I have struggled with blogging over the past year. I felt as if I was having to pull things out of my you-know-what just to post something...... and well, that's just not a good reason to blog.

I started blogging as a way to process, share, vent, and explore ideas and information. 
       With that said.... 

I have a multitude of information to process these days. Maybe my brain was just storing up thoughts, and now it's time to purge. So let's begin........

Ok, so I started reading this book called 7, you can find it here. (And yes, I do have time to read, people ask me this question all of the time. Between family, work, school, and work, I read. It's how I start my day and end my day. I'm somewhat OCD about it... the morning must begin with coffee and God, and the night always ends with some sort of good fiction book! I digress.)

Let me give some background:
It occurred to me that we have WAY TOO MUCH STUFF! I was preparing the house for painters to come in to paint bedrooms, and it seemed as if the walls were caving in. 
We have too much, an excess of everything!!!
I can't stand it!
I'm even contemplating moving to a bigger house, as if this crap won't follow me there!
So, one day as a way to escape the clutter, I went to the Christian book store to spend the gift card that my work girlfriends gave me last January. And I came upon the book 7. It looked interesting, and after putting down the $90 Beth Moore study, 
I picked up 7, 
it cost $15, 
it would simplify my life, 
what better timing. 
(Beth Moore study, I will buy you later).
And the adventure begins.......

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Positive Thinking... You Gotta Try It!

My 90 day challenge.... To eat healthy (no carbs, no wheat, no gluten), and to exercise regularly again! I feel so much better when I eat like that. Here's my plan: Visalus Shake for breakfast, healthy snack, healthy lunch, Visalus shake for dinner! Anyone want to join me? What's your 90 day challenge?

In addition to sticking to the eating plan, keeping a positive attitude is also important. Having the right mind set is crucial to obtaining your goals!

Did you know there are many health benefits to positive thinking??? 
  • Increased life span
  • Better physical and psychological well-being
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Better coping skills during hardships and stressful times
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Reduced risk of death from heart disease
  • Lower levels of distress 

 SOOOOOO, take a deep breath and put this into action....

Here are some examples of negative self-talk and how you can apply a positive thinking twist to them. (Mayo Clinic, 2011)
Negative self-talkPositive thinking
I've never done it before. It's an opportunity to learn something new.
It's too complicated. I'll tackle it from a different angle.
I don't have the resources. Necessity is the mother of invention.
I'm too lazy to get this done. I wasn't able to fit it into my schedule but can re-examine some priorities.
There's no way it will work. I can try to make it work.
It's too radical a change. Let's take a chance.
No one bothers to communicate with me. I'll see if I can open the channels of communication.
I'm not going to get any better at this. I'll give it another try.

Learn more about positive thinking and stress relief here.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

My 90 Day Challenge

 My 90 day challenge..... Part One

Well let me start from the beginning.....

I'm somewhat of a healthy food freak. I loooooovvveee reading about and learning about ways to get and stay healthy.

I've read books on
     the Paleo Diet,
            the Primal Blueprint,
                 the Maker's Diet,
                     the Blood Type Diet,
                         South Beach,
                              Jillian Michaels,
                                   Dr. Bob,
                                        etc., etc., etc.

I have a good handle on what to eat and how to eat to be healthy. I start most mornings with a breakfast shake or smoothy. I'm always trying different brands to see what tastes and works best. Most days I mix up my own concoction.

So one day, I'm sitting at home and my friend calls me up and tells me about a shake that she just tried. She's a breakfast shake kinda person too. She said I just had to try it.

So I did.

And it was really good.

Hence began my journey with ViSalus. The fastest growing health challenge in North America.

Stay tuned for Part Two tomorrow.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thankful Thursday

Things I am thankful for today:

1) Cherries (I'm sitting here eating a huge bowl of them right now!)

2) My daughters helping me around the house.

3) My first born son who keeps texting me pictures on his adventure to Lake Placid, New York.
4) My baby boy who wants to learn how to fold clothes so he can help with chores.

5) My husband who bought a 1962 Cruiser Inc so he could restore it. All because I saw one and said how cool it was :)

6) Summertime. I love summertime, the 100 degree days and all!

7) A relationship with a God who knows my every move before I even think it, who I grow closer to and understand a little it more each day.

8)  Oh and did I say cherries? Darn these are good!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Return

It feels somewhat surreal to be blogging again. I didn't intentionally abandon my blog, it just seemed to happen. I felt like there was little left for me to say, and it felt forced. I started writing at 750Words. I liked to be able to mind dump somewhere that wasn't in the public eye.

I actually took a break from all social networking.

In the last 5 months, I have spent very little time staying "connected"....
                 very little facebook,
                         very little twitter, 
                                very little blogging.
Even though I am an extrovert by nature, I sometimes need to live the life of an introvert and gain some energy from seclusion. I can't think of a real good reason why I took this sabbatical from blogging, but I do know that I have a lot to write about now that I am back.

And I am looking so forward to catching up with all of you out there!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

There is a reason...

There is a reason for my lack in posting.

Actually several...

1) I couldn't think of anything interesting to write about.
2) Sometimes I need to write about things that are just too personal to post publicly.
3) It seems like everyone has a blog these days.
4) I needed to re-evaluate my purpose.
5) My car was totaled.
6) It's winter, between lack of sunlight and decreased vitamin D, I may as well be a bear.

That's all.