Friday, March 23, 2012

Sleep Fight: Daddy vs Baby

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thankful Thursday: Snuggles & Sprouts

**Workout challenge: I decided to switch things up a bit and just focus on arms. I challenged myself with more weight and did 3 sets of 15 for the following: Barbell Curls, Hammer Curls, Rope Curls, Machine Curls, Forearm Curls, Triangle Tricep Extension, Overhead Tricep Extension, Rope Tricep Extension, Close-grip Chest Press. Also if you have time, get in a 30 minute walk!
You certainly don't have to attempt to complete that entire workout, but I would encourage you to do something active today for 30 minutes!!

It's thankful Thursday time! We all have so much to be thankful for and we love to take this opportunity just to write down each and everything that comes to mind. Please take this time to share with us what you're thankful for as well. If you have a blog expressing your thankfulness, please share the link! Without further ado, here's what we're thankful for:

Mandi's List:

I'm thankful for snuggles....even if they're in the night. Mckenna is back at it. She's up every few hours in the night to eat. Who knows why! She's been sick, so maybe that's contributing. She's not eating much during the say, so maybe that's contributing. She's a baby, so maybe that's contributing? Ha! But I have decided to change my frustration for thankfulness. She won't want me in the night for very long. One day, she'll sleep through the night and not look for her momma to snuggle her and nourish her. And while that day will mean more sleep, I'm sure I'll look back in 10 years and think, "aw she was so sweet and snuggly in the night as we drowsily nursed together. I miss that." So I'm just going to embrace it. She'll only fit in my arms for so long.

I'm thankful for coffee. I think after my first paragraph, my love for coffee needs no explanation! I look forward to my dose of caffeine in the morning after a long night with my hungry monster. 

I'm thankful for new developments. Mckenna is sitting up all on her own. She started doing this while Ronnie was in the hospital. But now she doesn't even need to use her hands (like a tripod). She will play with toys while sitting. She'll reach for things and alternate hands grabbing them. It is so fun to see her sitting like a big girl! I can't believe she's already 5 months (and 5 days) old!

Ronnie's List:

I'm so thankful for clear blue skies. We had one day of overcast and rain here this week and it just made me appreciate our clear blue skies even more. Yeah, I don't mind the rain once in a while and even cloudy days are cool once in a blue moon, BUT my body definitely doesn't dig it. I can tell before I get out of bed whether or not it's rainy or cloudy. I feel it in my bones as they say and it's so much tougher to get going. There's no doubt that Arizona is the place to be for me!!

I'm thankful for the first little sprouts of the spring season. As I said last week, we got the garden planted and are now just awaiting the arrival of all of the fresh goodness. I'm happy to report that just yesterday we saw our first sprouts of the season. The winner? Our carrots! The green leaves are barely poking through the soil, but it was such a thrill to go out there and see progress.

I’m thankful for a sleeping baby. It's not that I don't think that Mckenna is the cutest thing in the world when she's awake, but I seriously just want to eat her up when she's asleep. She looks SO peaceful and beautiful. I often catch myself marveling at what God has provided when I watch her rocking back and forth in her swing while her little chest moves up and down with each breath.

So, what are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Fill to be Filled

Have you ever noticed how fulfilled you feel when giving your time to someone or something less fortunate? There was a time when I wondered what in the heck I was going to do for the rest of my life (like I'm sure most of us do) and generally it would end with something sports related or in a field that made a bunch of money. Problem was, I was looking at careers that would fill me and make me happy (so I thought). I wish I would have realized sooner that the only way to feel full in this life is to live a life that is filling to others.

My word of advice to anyone who feels empty or like "something is missing" is to volunteer and give of your time with no expectation of a return. The greatest times of my life are in service to others. Don't know where to start? Opportunities won't always fall right into your lap, but there are people all around you that need help. You just have to be willing to keep an open eye out for that person or situation and be ready to join and fulfill that need at a moments notice. If you're anything like me, your opportunity may come out of nowhere.

I used to have a hardened heart for the homeless. I would say "life is choices" when I saw someone begging on the street. It wasn't until God softened my heart and called me to serve at a homeless shelter that I started to see things a different way. Yeah, life is still made up of choices, and many times the homeless make terrible decisions that land them in their current situation, but, it's deeper than that. Their story isn't as black and white as I used to think it was. Sure, they made bad choices, but all that did was make them have something in common with me.

I've made terrible choices as well. The difference is that I've had people in my life that were willing to pick me up when I was down or be by my side to see me through a mistake that I had made. One thing I learned about many of the homeless - they had no one. They were one mistake away from being homeless. So there they were. No one to turn to. No one to pick them up. No place to go. And eventually, no one to be.

It was through that experience that I realized how important family was to the outcome of one's life. It was through that experience that I felt obligated to give my time to others who only get one shot at this life. I serve a God of second, third and eighty-second chances. The least I can do is give my fellow human a couple as well.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tired vs. More Tired

As I boarded the plane on Friday afternoon to Cincinnati, I couldn't help but think how Mckenna's doctor appointment would turn out. She was burning up earlier that day and was just "off". She wanted to snuggle even more than usual and was very content to snooze for hours and hours in our arms. She's a very loving and snuggly girl, just usually, not that snuggly and loving. I finally got the news when I landed in my destination - Influenza A. Mckenna had 103 temperature and now we knew why.

There were two thoughts that entered my mind as soon as Mandi told me the news: 

I'm glad that we have an answer as to why she was off.
I'm glad that I'll be away from her for a little bit...followed by asking Mandi to find my Tamiflu prescription. 

Mandi was told to give Kenna some liquid tylenol to break the fever as well as some Tamiflu of her own to try to stave off some of the symptoms. It seemed to work almost immediately as Mandi saw improvement the next day. I got back into town on Saturday night and Mckenna seemed to be steadily improving through Sunday. She's definitely not 100% as her sleep has been disrupted more and she's not totally interested in eating, but we are seeing a lot of improvement.

I started taking Tamiflu the night I got back to do my best to avoid any of the crud, and so far, so good...I think. I did wake up with a sore throat and an ear ache, which has lasted throughout the day, but I don't have a fever as of now. I was also pretty devoid of energy all day, but that's pretty common for me after a couple days of travel with such a short turn-around time. Needless to say, I had a major case of the Mondays plus whatever the heck, if anything, was going on.

The last thing I wanted to do was exercise. Through some dumb motivational luck, I ended up seeing this post on Facebook:

Its days like today that I need you guys the most. I am physically tired and still sore from the run the other day. I would usually skip exercising because I am tired. But I know I need to stick to my schedule that I made. My schedule is to exercise mon wed fri as long as I am not coughing up blood. So being that I am tired and unmotivated, what are some good exercises that I can do that won't make me too exhausted????

To which I responded:

When I'm tired or exhausted I think to myself - will I get more tired if I exercise? Which is followed by, what's the difference between being tired and more tired? That's generally followed by whatever workout I planned on doing that day :)

Hearing my own advice is just what I needed!! There's no way I could "preach" without following through in my own life. Right after I typed that out I asked Mandi if she'd like to go for a walk. We ended up doing a 20 minute walk which was followed immediately buy a 25 minute run/walk that I went on while she fed Mckenna at home. 

As is always the case, I was so glad that I pushed it and did my regular workout even though I was feeling a bit under the weather and tired. I've said this many times, but it is so true - You'll never regret doing a workout!! My natural instinct is to want to shut it down and rest, but I've been led astray by my natural instinct before. It's just SO IMPORTANT that were moving as much as possible. This is especially true when we're sick. The last thing we want is for whatever is going on in our head to make it's way to our lungs. 

It's times like this that we must do anything and everything to keep our lungs breathing deeply and with purpose. You don't have to do everything when you're sick, but you should definitely be doing something!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Finishing WELL

At church yesterday we had a guest pastor speak. He spoke to something that really struck a cord in me and got me thinking. He spoke to the concept of finishing well. Not just finishing, but finishing well. And we looked at 1 Corinthians 9:24 that says, "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize." The key to that verse is "run in such a way as to get the prize," he said. This really made me do some self reflection. Am I living in such a way that I would get the prize? I'm not just talking in my walk with Christ...which is obviously the most important. But in my life in general I'm not so sure. about a depressing thought for a competitive girl who likes to win. I am so good at starting off strong when I do things. I'm passionate. I get fired up. I jump into things with both feet, often times without thinking (isn't that right mom and dad? They had to watch me work out the kinks of this eagerness as I fumbled my way through mistakes in middle school and high school).

As I sat in the sermon I thought back on many things in my life that I started great, but didn't finish so well. Of course there are times when I've finished well, but am I finishing well the things that truly matter? Will I look back on 30 years of marriage and feel like I was as good of a wife in year 29 as I was in year 1? I hope so, but judging by the fact that I'm already not as helpful, and eager to please in year 2 than as in year 1...I'm not so sure...unless things change. Will Mckenna think I was as loving, fun, attentive and on fire as a mom when she's in high school as she does now (ok maybe looking back on her high school years, she'll probably hate me for a period as her curfew is earlier than all her friends and "she can't do anything"...haha!). I hope so, but I'll have to make the conscious effort to continue to give it my all.

In sitting and reflecting on his words, I realized just how hard it is to finish well, judging by the fact that so many times I haven't. But I think that's why it's so important - especially in my walk with Christ. I think the things to be the most proud of are the things that most people can't do. I think the things that brings God the most joy are the things that He knows take work and sacrifice. And the biggest thing I realized is that of course He cares if I finish well in my relationship with Him and in doing His work, but I think He also cares that I finish well all of my worldly commitments also. I think He wants me to start my exercise regime with gusto and finish it that way. I think He wants me to be a good friend to someone, not just in the beginning, but always. I think He wants me to lay on my death bed having finished strong as a sister, wife, mom, daughter, etc.

So I'm choosing today to start well...AND finish well. Yesterday's sermon gave me a new fire to continue the things I have continued to do well. And to pick up the slack on the things I have started to let slip. I want the prize!!