Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sundays are for Thanksgiving

I try – at least a bit – to make Sundays a Sabbath, not just a day for prepping for the week ahead.  It’s a bit of a balance, resting and chilling out but not TOO much, because if there is too much rest, there is also no sleep on  Sunday night.  (Aging can bite me).

This last few weeks has been a major drama fest at my house.  Lots of crazy with employer related stuff.  It’s settled down for now, praise the Lord.  I got a Word from a couple of the ladies at my mentoring meeting yesterday – the first was that God was listening to my prayers, and that all He wanted me to do was praise Him. (Seriously, folks, I started to cry – I’ve been praying for years about these issues).

The second was:

Isaiah 51:7-8 “Listen to Me, you who know righteousness,
A people in whose heart is My law;
Do not fear the reproach of man,
Nor be dismayed at their revilings.
“For the moth will eat them like a garment,
And the grub will eat them like wool.
But My righteousness will be forever,
And My salvation to all generations.”

Speaking of things for which I cannot POSSIBLY give enough thanks, my church is freaking amazing.  I don’t think I’d ever have known the joy of close relationship with the Lord if I hadn’t found this place.  (Yeah, like I found it…)*   The beauty of the body of Christ working together holistically and naturally, a place where you feel completely comfortable walking up to someone and saying, “can you pray for me, please?” – and getting prayer, right then at that moment – it’s amazing.    You hang out with us, you WILL see the power of God at work.   And that’s so encouraging.   I’m not saying that every Calvary Chapel is this amazing – how would I know?  I’ve only been to this one.  But this church – oh, this church.  This is a GOOD place.  Like a clean, fresh mountain spring – this church is a *good* place.  And I’m very grateful.


*How did “I find my church”.  Ha.  I didn’t find my church.  God sent someone to come get me, because I was ready.   I hadn’t attended the church I grew up in much since I came back from college – it wasn’t the same place I’d left.  And my husband didn’t like it (he grew up there too, bad memories).

I’d come back to God on my own after my son was born.  Not like I ever really LEFT, I could still hear Him, but I was singing the La-La song and marching to my own beat.  Anyway.  After I had our son, I started understanding the Bible a lot more.   But my old church was still weird.  I’d go sometimes, and it wasn’t right.

So a couple of years later, I was working out regularly at a gym, and the lady who worked out with me most days struck up a conversation.  She said she just loved her church, and told me how awesome it was.  I gave it a go – and dived in.  You know, I hardly saw her after the day she delivered that message.  I see her from across a crowded sanctuary sometimes… she’s one of the elders’ wives.  I don’t think I’ve spoken to her since.   (Not that she’s not cool, but sometimes I’m weirdly shy).

What our church specifically is known for is 1) love and 2) prayer.   It’s a GOOD place.   God keeps the senior pastor alive by the skin of his (nonexistent) teeth.   He … I just don’t know how to explain how right it is.  It’s not the preaching, though that’s fine.  It’s the fellowship.   It’s the life.  My church is NOT dead.

Anyway.  I know I gush about my church everywhere, in all the comboxes, and here sometimes.  There are reasons.   And today is Sunday, and today I am talking about things for which I am grateful.   And I am very, very grateful for my church home.  It’s a good place to be.


Adventures in the Good Mall

San Diego is a fairly diverse county, with a lot of socio-economic strata.  My city tends to be a bit down-market.  So when I dress – especially the way I’ve been dressing lately – I get the “dang you look CUTE” from all sides.  And I feel fierce… until I hit a mall in one of the up-market areas of the county, where I clearly do NOT fit in.

It’s interesting.

I was very happy to hit the expensive mall, check out the expensive stores.   I found good-quality clothes!  Very exciting.  I didn’t find anything that I fell in love with, excepting the overall quality.   That was encouraging.  (Not finding anything to try on was good for my pocketbook).

But I did clue in that it’s time for me to stop being such a fabric hoarder and start getting to work with the good stuff I have in stash.   I think we’ll start with that silk tweed I have … I don’t really HAVE to make a jacket a la Chanel to the tune of a month of hand-sewing.  I can just sew it up normally.   My biceps aren’t going anywhere.  (Coach has been having us do a lot of upper body this season).  Kind of holding fire on clothes for the lower body, I’ve changed shape without losing weight and everything looks a bit odd right now.

No more cutting corners or saying, “well, that enhancement would really “make” this … but it’s so expensive”.  Snork.  Trust – it’s not that expensive compared to what’s in the mall made out of natural fibers with a bit of skill.

I’m going to start with a sewing project for my dad.  He’s turning 75 this year, and I seem to remember that he said he thought that smoking jackets were the last thing in cool.  Anyway, he’s not really a cardigan guy, but he is enjoying slowing down a bit and … it’s time for a warm, cozy wrapper.  One with style?  Yes please.

So I scored some washable wool + polysatin at Fabric Mart, and I’m going to sew up the jacket from Folkwear for his birthday gift.

That’s actually what I’m going to start working on today.


Snow Peas, Sweet Peas, Weeds and Flowers

Spring has sprung!

Everyone remember my “fall” garden, that according to the seed packets, was supposed to be producing food around Christmas?  Well, apparently my seeds can’t read, because they weren’t having any of that nonsense and the plants didn’t really get going until the days started lengthening.

But now we’re getting rain (late) and I’ve finally got peas!  Of course now I can’t get up there to pick the peas very often, because climbing a steep hill made from clay while wet is a *very bad plan*.  I got these during the first bit of dampness in the latest storm.  (No, this SoCal gal is not complaining about rain – never!)  The chard and kale and lettuces are doing okay.  Not wildly excited, but okay.

The weeds are doing fabulously.  They too appreciate the rain.  In the few weeks since I’ve gotten up for a proper weed, they’ve grown knee high in spots.  ARGH.  Oh well, with the rain they’ll be much easier to pull when it’s safe to climb the hill again.  I knew the hill was going to be a nightmare of weeds this year – we did so much last year, but we didn’t have time to plant (or mulch) every square inch.  C’est la vie.

The sweet peas were mostly a bust – I have a pile of the color of sweet peas I like the least, and the rest of the plants were eaten by an enterprising ground squirrel.  I believe the culprit was eventually eaten by my cat, so there is some justice in the world, but I’m kinda bummed – I adore sweet peas and I worked hard to get them.  I think I planted three multicolor packets to an 8 foot stretch of fence!  All for 2′ of solid warm purple.  -sigh-  Well, I have some.

Next year I’m planting peas and sweet peas no sooner than Christmas.  Might make a pleasant task between Christmas and NYE.

The wisteria has started blooming.  It’s been a wet March, and I forgot that Easter is just ’round the corner, and we always have wisteria for Easter.  I picked a bit to put on my desk – they don’t last, water or not, so I just plop them where I can pick them up and sniff on them as I feel like it.


Not a bad first harvest, and the plants are 7′ tall and happy as clams, so I should have a good few meals of peas (we eat them in stirfry) this year.   I think I’ll use the stalks as mulch – I keep hearing good things about legumes and nitrogen.

In other news, I’ve been continuing to push like a madwoman on the business end of things.  Lots of blogging.  I’m narrowing down my focus.  Might re-design my pro page this weekend/next week.   And it’s Spring Break for the kids, so no driving duties for me – so I will be doing some scouting expeditions to various malls.  Ah, time!

Hoping all are having fun…………………….

Changing Merging

So, this is kind of interesting.  One of the things that I was confronted with the reading I’ve been doing is the “work vs home” attitude dichotomy, and how it’s really not at all that useful for someone who is in business for themselves.

And that’s one of the things I’ve been struggling with.  Because my work persona (18 years ago, cough, cough) is hyper efficient, hard working, hard driving and goes home on the dot.  I come in, I do the work, I come up for air briefly and smile, I dive back in and work harder than any two other people you have, and then I leave.  Bosses *love* me, co-employees tend not to.  I just… I don’t schmooze at work.  I’m not there to have fun, I’m there to do something and then go home.  Never could get over the subconscious belief that if I got through the stack of paper, I’d be able to leave early.   Waddle slowly through my day?  Horror.  I don’t want to be doing this, the last thing I want to do when doing something I don’t want to do is do it *slowly*.

My home persona is the one you know.  The one who has time to stop and have a cup of tea with everyone, the one who is relaxed and takes an interest, the one who really will stop and smell the roses.  She’s pretty amazing at self-care, and spreads the nurturing around.  And since housework continually replicates itself, she doesn’t stress out about “finishing” it (excepting big projects).

So, this week I decided to try hard to treat my business LIKE a business and spend serious hours working.   And I noticed what I should have known already – I’m pretty darn busy, without the job.   It’s only that I’ve been coasting through that I feel like I don’t do anything (well, that and spending a minimum of an hour/day in the car schlepping my kids, which takes a lot of time but doesn’t make me feel like anything got done).    My life got more efficient – I started getting things done right away instead of leaving them for later, because I wanted my to-do list empty.   And that changed my energy levels – you know, pushing is harder than coasting!   I spent my week either running flat out or collapsed in a corner.

That won’t change.  My job isn’t going to be the cake in the money-making of this marriage, not for years.  It’s meant to be the icing (and we won’t get me started on how the taxes worked out – I was one solitary sprinkle this year…), so therefore it continues to be reasonable and proper that I do the things that I do.  (Although I’m going to start having my entirely capable teenage children pick up a chunk of the work, based on the fact that there is no better preparation for Real Life).  So… I have to find balance.

And there are things I just don’t want to give up.  Time with friends (though I have to schedule it in), sewing, etc.

I’ve about gotten used to the concept that I won’t be someone who does things “every day” or the same way every day – ever.  I’m a blast then flop person, a “do things in cycles” person.  As long as I touch all the spinning plates in suitable time, it’s all good.

And … Jane Hyperefficient needs to come out of the basement, but not get as crazy as she was back in the day.

So.  Changes.  Good changes.  Weird to be changing though.  And, since this is me, nothing is ever fast enough (although honestly it IS fast enough, because adjustments have to be made).


Splish Splash

Still swimming here.  Increasing my protein consumption (radically) has (radically) decreased my appetite, so win.  The numbers on the scale are starting to trend downward.   (FINALLY).

Speaking of personal change, I’ve been spending serious time listening to Dave Ramsey online.  No, I don’t need a “total money makeover”, but I do need a different perspective insofar as being an entrepreneur.  So, Dave recommended a book by a Rabbi called, “Thou Shalt Prosper” and I’m about half way through – and it is kicking my BUTT.  In a very good way.  Lots of attitudes that I *know* are counter-productive for someone in business for themselves … and this is pointing them out and giving me some perspective.  Biblical perspective, which I have a lot more respect for than generic.  (I don’t have a lot of use for “vision boards” of cruise ships or $$ shoes or whatnot).

I’m sure I’ll be writing about that soon.

In other news, spending more time writing for the pro blog, doing social media, etc.   Still working out, though now my knee is mad at me.  People, DO NOT COMPENSATE FOR PAIN.  It only leads to more pain, elsewhere.  Oy.  (Ironically, working out is the best thing for my ankle/knee – it’s the only thing that makes me feel better the next day.  It’s much more useful than sitting on my butt.  Very counter to what my doctor would tell me about “resting”).  Fewer calories = less energy, which is annoying, but whatevs.  I show up, I do my best, I go home.  Cutting isn’t the time frame to expect to get stronger.  :p

Hit the Good Marshalls the other day and scored bigtime.  Got eight pieces – mostly tops, another pair of jeans (yes, armageddon next week).  I’m not immune to the need to wear the right clothes to change my mindset.  And that’s what all this is, and I guess it’s okay that I’m uncomfortable.  This is CHANGE.  I’m changing who I am.  I’m dragging a potential Hearth out of the basement, dusting her off, and letting her go.   It’s not like this isn’t part of who I always have been… but it’s not been valued or used.

Seasons of life.  Y’know.  And yes, these are big changes.  Going from a nice homeschooling mommy to a woman operating her own image-consulting business IS a big mental jump.  Maybe that’s the first hurdle, being okay with that… being okay with “I’m changing, and that’s okay”.  And it’s okay to be scared and uncomfortable, because change IS scary and uncomfortable.

Yeah, thinking to do tonight.  🙂

My favorite!

Swimmy swim, people.  Swimmy swim.

Swimmy Swim

I think things are going fairly well.   Including a cheat evening/week has improved my mental stability – but I think I need to fine-tune the diet the rest of the time.   I’m going to try to hit my protein macros and let the rest of the food take care of itself (so long as I stay on program).  Hoping that reduces overall appetite/calorie intake.

So, why do I have a problem with the whole, “just count calories” thing?  It’s a fair question, and it has two answers.  1)  I have been on one too many diets and now I’m to a place where logging my food stresses me out.  This is stupid, but it’s true.   2)  I get really freaked out when I am hungry/not getting the right nourishment for long periods of time.   And you can forget hungry AND tired.  Nope.

It’s weird.  I can fast just fine.  I mean, discomfort here and there, but I don’t wig out at all.    But just TRY to tell me that I should be “full” because I’ve eaten a large cubic volume of salad and I’ll snap.  No, I’m NOT satisfied.  I’m temporarily full and yes, I can feel that I’m still hungry.  Don’t lie.  (I can even feel what I should eat to give my body what it needs, whether that’s protein or carb or fat).

I think that stems from having malnutrition as a child.  If you’ve bounced to HHH you’ve seen the entry about Hidden Beauty.  China was (and likely still is) a land of exquisite craftsmanship and beauty.  But in 1980, it was a country without enough food to go ’round, and that includes Foreign Experts.  We had ration coupons.   In one year, I lost 1/3 of my hair.  I’m likely a few inches shorter than I would be if I hadn’t been there.  I always had a full belly – and I was always, always hungry.   (My folks lost a lot of weight too – BFF couldn’t get into a dress, at 15, that my mom had made for her right before coming home).

There’s nothing I can do about any of that.  I have to take weight loss very consistently, very slowly, and very deliberately, taking my health into consideration the whole time.  It’s not fun at ALL.  It’s not fast.  It’s frustrating and makes me feel badly about myself.  I swear to you that except for my one cheat evening/wk, I don’t touch sugar.  I’m not eating grains (okay, there were the potstickers DH asked for and I made from scratch, and I put 2tbsp of flour in the paprikash…) except that night either.   It’s not low-carb (I eat a lot of potatoes and yams and fruit) but it’s a solid diet.  -sigh-

So, a tune up.  Not a change, just – make it a little better, little tighter.

The good news is that the workouts are the bomb.  My coach takes amazing care of me.  My ankle is substantially better – I have my range of motion (mostly, still getting used to wearing shoes for lifts) back.   BBC is actively good for my ankle – I feel better after each.  CF is not so much, but I’m there.  Cardio capacity is … well, I’m showing up and doing the work.  It will come back in time.

Today I found out that “cluster backsquat” actually was two moves – a “cluster” and a backsquat.  What’s a cluster?  It’s a squat-clean straight into a thruster.  Would you like your heart rate to soar?  K.  Thrusters.  Clusters too, I guess.

Instruction:  Clean the bar, dropping into a full squat.  As you stand up, press the bar above your head in a smooth push.  (It’s *not* a clean & jerk, which allows you to reset at your standing position for the above-the-head part of the move).   Not terrible.

Now do several of them in a row, no rest between each.  It’s the pumping action of dropping, squatting, then standing/pushing a weight above your head… that’s why your heartrate goes into orbit.  (Wall-balls do this too).  It’s *not* the amount of weight.  I mean, that makes it harder and your muscles work more.  But it’s the pumping action that will get you.  You can do this with 5lb weights and feel it.

Oh.  It’s crossfit.  “lifting weights faster”.  So… my time for 9-6-3 clusters/backsquats (first you do your nine clusters, then nine backsquats, then back for more clusters) at 65lb was 5:50.  That was over the time limit of 5 min.  Oh well…. sometimes I get too disappointed in myself and them I’m like, “what are you THINKING”.   Only at crossfit with the insane people (my husband claims I’m one of them) is this slow.

One day at a time.  But that’s where we be.

Just Keep Swimming

Finished W30.  3lb off… which is good, but not great.   Asked DH if I was looking any slimmer. * He said I was more compact, but not slimmer.  That kind of matches the 1/4″ increase I measured on my biceps.   (I do feel a great deal better).

This is the thing my body does.  FIRST we add muscle.  Seriously.  I hurt my achilles tendon, have had to do upper body or veryvery careful lower body… so what’s the best response my body can offer?  More muscles.  (I think my back/chest may have increased too, but I refuse to check).

If I were a guy, this would be super encouraging.  But I’m not a guy!  I was trying to get smaller…

I remember from this summer that I lost more weight the month after W30 than I did the month during.  Just keeping my diet clean.  I HAVE to remember that, because I want to be grumpy and throw in the towel.  But no more!  I’m going to just keep swimming.  Because first we add the muscle, then we’ll start taking off some fat.  It’s like my body runs its own weird bulk/cut cycle.  (Wish it would process more of the latter, oh well).

Work stuff going more or less similarly.  I’ve learned some things, going to make some changes.  Grateful?  again for DH and pushing me.  I was feeling discouraged, he got me to work on setting up for a vlog.  That was useful.  I figured out some lighting issues (my home suffers from a paucity of good places to videotape).

Anyhow.  I’m going to mix it up a bit today.  Supposed to go to ASG and listen to a presentation on applique, but I really don’t want to sit and listen … I think I’ll get up on the hill and weed out my garden.  Better for the soul.

Just. Keep.  Swimming.




*I know this is a mean question to spring on your husband.  Mine will, however, tell me the truth.