Saturday, January 25, 2014


FEELING:  I'm 11 days into my sugar detox and feeling great! (Except for the past 3 days when an annoying cold decided to take up residence in my nose, throat, and chest) The detox is immensely easier the second time around, especially when you know what to expect and actually know what foods you like and recipes are winners! I am sleeping better, waking up easier (typically is a fight to get out of bed), no headaches, more energy, and no bloating!

READING:  "11/22/63" by Stephen King. Great book! Fictional story about if time-traveling was possible and what would happen if JFK could be saved.  Good stuff.

"Evolving in Monkey Town" by Rachel Held Evans. This woman is my new hero. Seriously. She puts on paper everything that is in my head.  I find myself agreeing out loud when I read this book because I swear she is inside my head! All about her faith journey and her struggle with doubts, she adds a unique perspective on the postmodern Christian church.  She also has an awesome blog.

"You Lost Me" by David Kinnaman. I haven't started this one yet, but it is sitting on my desk! This one looks at why so many young people 16-29 are leaving the church and rethinking their faith. He talks about how we can help equip them to maintain their faith and embrace it rather than throw it away.

THINKING:  about the purpose in life...why coconut flour is so expensive...

PLANNING:  this week's menu! Crockpot Chicken Chili, Spaghetti Squash, Salmon burgers, and banana muffins!

DREAMING:  starting my photography business, becoming a certified nutritionist, my next solo trip (hopefully to Ireland!), horse adventures this summer...

GOALS:  1 down on the "outside of my comfort zone" goal...I attended an equine seminar on common horse health issues (signs, symptoms, treatment) and had to be extroverted  :) And if you count trying mashed parsnips as out of the box, that would be number 2  :)  but I don't think that counts, albeit delicious.

EATING:  My new favorite snack is frozen banana "frostys" Sooo delcious and curbs my ice cream craving! Try it! 2 frozen bananas (cut into pieces), 1 TBSP cocoa powder, splash of coconut milk, 2 TBSP almond butter, dash of salt, dash of cinnamon. Throw it all in the blender and it comes out looking like this: good.

TRYING:  to still eat more green things. (I hate green veggies...learning to like asparagus though.)

EXCITED:  Jimmy Fallon takes over the Tonight Show February 17th.  Can't wait.  I love that funny, cute, hilarious, awesome guy.

LAUGHING:  this video. 

"Strength doesn't come from what you can do, it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't. "

Sunday, January 12, 2014

21 Day Sugar Detox...Take 2

Today I started the 21 Day Sugar Detox .  This lifestyle change has done just that for me...changed my life.  I first stumbled upon this "non diet" when I was fed up with feeling crappy, feeling lethargic, and not at all happy with what I saw in the mirror.  I knew some things needed to change, and drastically.  I first did the detox (which is really just a fancy way of saying "absolutely none of", not like a juice detox or crazy fad diet like you might have in your head ) back in May of last year.  I will have to post later about my first experience with that, but just let me say that by day 4, I was crying and pretty much willing to sell my soul for some french fries or some chocolate.  However, I got through it successfully and completely busted my carb/sugar addiction and completely changed my eating habits.  Long story short, I have lost 50 lbs in just over 6 months by cutting out processed foods, gluten, refined sugars, and adding in tons of veggies, lean meats, fruits, and good for you fats/oils.  So when Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Netflix-week-off-of-work were over, I knew I had slipped jumped off the wagon and eaten way to much of my drug of choice.  It was time to get back on track.  What better month to do that then January!

I have actually been pretty excited this time around to get going and to get feeling better again.  It is amazing how your body reacts when it has been used to being fed whole, healthy foods and then you instead give it Christmas cookies, nachos, and Arby's mozzarella sticks (not afraid to admit one of my favorite fast foods...) Also, having seen the positive results firsthand and realizing I could get through it, I was rearing to go! I was supposed to start tomorrow with an awesome group of friends that are going to be doing it with me, but I started today! I did all my food shopping and prep yesterday so I was ready to go today! I will spare you the details of what I ate (check out my instagram if you are interested in what I will be eating the next 21 days) but it was a very flavorful and delicious day.  I am so thankful for what this program has jumpstarted in my life and how my outlook on food has completely changed.  I will have to share more on that later, but just in case I post a ransom note in exchange for PizzaRolls and Cookie'll know why.

"If life was easy, where would all the adventures be?"

Monday, January 6, 2014

All Snowed In

Well I told myself I would get a lot done today since I didn't have to go into work due to the 13 inches of snow and 3 foot drifts currently blanketing the metro area...yeah.  I got a few things done, but not nearly everything I wanted to. Gotta work on that motivation to clean my floors and scrub the litter box... I did, however, do some reading today! I stumbled upon a few good articles and wanted to share one I thought was perfect since I have been talking about goals, life, and "what's next" for me.  This article really struck a chord with me, especially when she says, "We reach our long awaited achievement and discover it doesn’t quite meet our expectations, so we set our eyes on the next step." Powerful stuff.  This is totally me.  I am constantly thinking in terms of the next step.  All of my dreaming and goal setting is great and is not a bad thing, but it also keeps me from celebrating today.  The moment I'm in now.  Being thankful and content.  (Talk about a goal, huh?) And as the author says, "Life does not begin when you get married, land your dream job or board a plane to travel the world. It is found in the beautiful, powerful love of Christ, which changes us in the midst of all circumstances, especially the ones we find most difficult. We need only be willing." Word.

Friday, January 3, 2014

My Best Craziest Decision

So I'm doing this 30 Days of Hustle thing this month with a group of awesome dreamers, led by Jon Acuff.  If you are not familiar with him or his books, or his blog, or his hilarious tweets, check him out! It is a neat experiment/adventure in getting stuff done and actually accomplishing goals.  It is right up my alley and has really gotten me thinking and dissecting a lot of goals, but one in particular, my three things outside my comfort zone. I am such a a planner of plans for planners. If you need a list made or a plan developed, I'm your girl.  I can make an itinerary that will make OCD wedding planners cry tears of joy. (I had a 2 inch binder for my trip to Alaska...yeah) But this planning has notoriously gotten me in trouble.  I battle anxiety and panic attacks and I know a lot of that is due to being so attached to my plans.  If one thing goes wrong, I freak out and get stressed.  I have come a long way in that department and am very thankful for that, but I have a loooonng way to go.  So figuring out how to be flexible, spontaneous, and even more flexible has done wonders for that struggle.  Also realizing that when I make those plans, they WILL change. No doubt about it.  So because of all that, I don't take risks.  I don't go out of my comfort zone, I don't do scary things.  (If they are outside of my comfort zone I have to have color coded binder with printed MapQuest directions on how to get back to my comfort zone...) Hince the 30 days of challenging myself to go outside my box.

As I have been journaling and analyzing my goal, I started thinking about times when I did go outside my box and take a risk.  The number one craziest thing I have ever done in my life was buy my horse, Sadie Mae.  Granted I had been contemplating buying one for about 6 months, but when it came down to making the actual decision, I made it quick and I made it without asking permission, without double checking with people, or without making a pros and cons list.  I went to Tennessee with two of my best friends, rode her once, offered the owner a lower price, got turned down, and I left. As I pulled away from the farm, I couldn't stop thinking about her.  We stopped at Cracker Barrel for dinner and I still couldn't stop thinking about her.  With a little lot of encouragement from my friends, I quickly called up the owner and told her I would like to buy her horse.  I will never, ever forget that feeling.  That moment when my heart finally spoke louder than my brain. And it was the best craziest decision I have ever made.  It has been a ridiculous roller coaster ride and has had quite the learning curve, but I would not change it for anything.  That silly 4 legged animal has taught me more about myself than I ever thought an animal could.  Sometimes taking the biggest risk has the biggest rewards.

It is moments like that that I have to remind myself of when I am trying to figure out who I am, or what I want to be when I grow up.  I have to remind myself that I CAN survive when I go outside of my comfort zone. Not only survive, but be completely changed and experience something amazing! I CAN  take chances and not die. I am not saying all my risk taking will end this way, but certainly I am capable of much more than what is just inside my box, and would never even get to see it if I don't step outside once in a while. What my three things of spontaneity/out of the box/crazy/risky things are? I have no clue.  I am hoping that is the point...I don't want to plan what my spontaneous things are, even though I am fighting every fiber of my being to not do that right now.  But! I am excited to see what happens this month, what crazy thing I will do next, and what awesome things lay just outside my box!

And just so you all can drool at my beautiful horse, here she is!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year, New Goals

This obviously is supposed to be geared towards being a travel blog, but it doesn't look like any travel plans will be in the works for a while...that is one of my goals (which I will get to in a minute) but until that changes, I am going to use this blog for more general type blogging. You know, life updates, ramblings, and more or less just a whole bunch of random. So if you know me and want to follow along, awesome! If you don't know me and stumbled upon my ramblings, sorry...but welcome. Glad you're here.

Since today is January 1st and obviously the best day to start new things (or at least that is what my Facebook feed tells me) I am going to jump on that bandwagon.  2013 was a crazy year for me! I bought a horse, yes, a real one. I tried a 21 day sugar detox that completely rocked my world and I have lost 50 pounds so far. I took my National Certification test for sign language interpreting and failed.  I subsequently reevaluated my profession and my life.  I decided I was overreacting.  I did some self analysis...ok A LOT of self analysis. And I learned to shoot a gun.  So 2013 was a pretty great year! This year I have felt like my brain has been in overdrive just about every day. Dreaming, planning, analyzing, doubting, and processing. I have been doing a lot of questioning and a lot of figuring out just who I am and who I want to be when I grow up.  And in 2013 I came to the conclusion that I have no freaking clue! And you know what? That's ok.  But in 2014? I am going to at least figure out part of that equation.  I don't really have a plan for 2014 or really anything specific in mind, but I have a couple of goals that I want to try and tackle this year. So thanks in part to an awesome group I recently joined called "30 Days of Hustle", I am starting with this one:  In the next 30 days I will do 3 things that are outside of my comfort zone. Maybe they scare me, maybe they make me uncomfortable, or maybe they are just spontaneous.  But I am getting this ball rolling on figuring out what and who I am! (I figured since my current profession was a spontaneous decision based off of a class taken on a whim, this might be a good idea!) So just three new things. I now have 29 days.

I also have the following year long goals:

Successfully complete another 21 day sugar detox! (starting January 13th)
Lose another 50 lbs
Take a trip this year (doesn't have to be big, but take some kind of trip just for my personal benefit)
Go on a date
Continue journaling
Make my 30 before 30 list
Go on tons of trail rides with my horse
Finish decorating my bedroom
Paint more. (Complete at least 3 paintings this year)
Photograph more and come up with a name for my photography business I keep putting off...

I'm sure I could come up with more, but one thing I have noticed is that I am more of a dreamer than a doer so I am also going to try and be more of a doer this year! This year is going to rock, it's going to be amazing, and I am starting today.