Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Weekly Update

I looked at my blog before I started typing and realized my last post was a week ago. At least it's better than I had been doing! Actually, that's a little encouraging when I think about my Book List. I finished The Giver in a day and then started on the Hobbit... which feels like it is taking me for.ev.er to read. I'm almost done with it though! I will probably finish it tomorrow. I don't know what book I'll read after that. Not the Lord of the Rings though... I'm not ready for that. ;-)

I'm getting pretty excited for my trip! Ok, I've been excited since we booked it way back in October, but now it's getting real! Greg is letting me borrow his big suitcase and carry-on for the trip. I picked up the suitcase last night (he's using the carry-on for a business trip to Florida this weekend), and I already started packing!
It looks like I packed more than I actually have lol
One of the many great benefits of going to the Bahamas in February is that most of the clothes I'm packing are not in regular rotation right now. It felt a little odd digging out my shorts and flip-flops when it was 13 degrees earlier today! I think I have everything I need for the trip. Amy and I went shopping on Monday night and split the cost of some to the items we can share like shampoo, soap, room snacks/drinks, etc. Somehow that made this trip a little more real. :-D

In other news, I am currently in the midst of a 21-day prayer fast with my church. We fast corporately a few times a year, and I always learn new things about myself and my relationship with God in the process. I wouldn't say it's fun necessarily, but it is beneficial. My church supports all sorts of fasting; total fast, Daniel fast, media fast, whatever. This time I decided I'd give up all meat except seafood. So far I've learned that I'm ok not having meat, but I don't like meal planning. I think that's where my real sacrifice lies! But I use that time as a prayer reminder so it's all good. However, on Monday the Lord told me to add something else to my fast.

I just want to take a minute to say that when I say the Lord told me to do something, I don't mean that I heard a booming voice in the heavens or an angel appeared before me. It's hard to explain exactly how I know when God tells me to do something, I just know. It's a kind of conviction and certainty that I can't quite explain. Anyway, back to my fast...

Apparently, I'm not allowed to complain/whine/wallow for the rest of my fasting time. That is definitely harder than going without meat. I hate to admit it, but I have gotten into such a habit of texting Amy or Greg when someone makes me angry or annoyed. And it's not to vent so I can move on, it's to get them to agree with me and validate my irritation. And sometimes I will sit and stew in the negativity until everything makes my skin crawl. So I have to stop. That's not to say that I can't speak up when something is seriously wrong or that I can't let people know I've had a rough day, I'm just not allowed to rehash it a million times. I think this will also help me reclaim my joy in 2014. Is it odd that I'm kind of looking forward to the struggle?

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Giver

I’m off to a good start with my reading list! After I typed up my list I looked to see what I could get from the R.E.A.D.S. website. I was surprised to see the Giver was immediately available so I downloaded it and started reading right away (it surprised me because it was recently announced that it will be a movie later this year). 
This book has been recommended to me several times via the “you read this, you may like this” sections on Kindle. Apparently they know what they are doing, because I read it in less than 10 hours. It’s a pretty short book, only 204 pages, but still.  


The Giver centers around Jonas, a twelve year old boy living in a seemingly ideal world. However, when he is given his life assignment as the Receiver he begins to realize the dark secrets of his fragile community. It was recommended to me after reading the Hunger Games and Divergent. Good book, I recommend it. If you enjoyed those,  you should check this one out. As is usually the case when an adult reads a children’s book, it made me think about things a little differently.  

Right now I am eagerly waiting for my friend Leah to let me know the gender of her baby. She held a gender reveal dinner with her fiancee's family and is supposed to let the rest of us know after the dinner. She told me when she found out she was pregnant that she wanted a boy, but I'm fairly positive she'll be ecstatic either way. I hope she posts something soon! The suspense is killing me! :-)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Bibliophile


With my upcoming vacation (23 days and counting!), my brain keeps yelling at me that I need books for my trip. I don't know what it is about a vacation that makes me want to read, but it's the trend. I was telling Amy about my predicament, and she told me to to go for it and we could allocate 40% of our time for reading. You don't have to tell me twice! But that started the cycle of looking through my book pins on Pinterest and jotting down authors and titles that I've wanted to read... 40+ titles later I have a list of books I want to read. Needless to say I'm not planning to take all of them on vacation with me. I decided to keep a running list here on the blog so I can remember what I wanted to read. If I try to read all of them this year, I'll average about one every 9 days. Which actually seems feasible. I'm not making it a challenge because we all know I fail in epic proportions at those. But I would like to spend more time in books and less time doing nothing, i.e. mindlessly browsing social media. Nothing against Facebook personally, but I never seem to get anything productive out of it. At least Pinterest provides me with recipes and book recommendations. :-)

I'm not sure if I'm more excited about my book list or my vacation. Amy and I need to go shopping for our shared items like shampoo and toothpaste. We're entering that phase where I can't really believe that I'm about to go on vacation. This is what happens when I plan trips more than a month in advance; by the time the trip arrives I've been planning it so long I don't know what else to do! the correct answer is start planning another one. Maybe G and I can go some place interesting this year, like a theme park or something. We haven't taken a trip since August 2011, which is far too long to my poor little soul.

*For the record, no, Amy and I will not be spending 40% of our vacation reading... it will be 30%, max.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Sick days

Ok, so I thought I just needed to rest. I thought I had a measly little cold and needed to sleep it off. Nope. Turns out I have the flu. Yay! I haven't had the flu in like 12 years so I kind of forgot what the symptoms felt like. But after sleeping for almost 36 hours, I decided to have Mr. W drive me to the clinic to get checked out. They decided to do a flu test, and when the doctor came back in wearing a mask I knew it was positive. She prescribed me cough medicine, a Z-Pack, and an inhaler. The Z-Pack and inhaler are to help combat the bronchitis that is know to hit those with asthma when they get the flu. Awesome x2! She also gave me a sick note through Friday. Part of me is sorely tempted to use it, but I don't have the personal time to take a week off now when I'm also leaving for the Bahamas in 30 days(!!!) so we'll see. I'm forbidden to go back to work until I'm fever-free for 24 hours so that may make my decision for me.

I'd like to say I'm doing pretty well with my resolutions so far. I wouldn't even be lying if I did say it! My main resolution is to get more organized this year, and I've done ok. G gave me a journal for Christmas, and I've been using it to make to-do lists. Putting my tasks in writing seems to be helping me focus. Some of my tasks have been put on hold this week, but I'm hoping to go back at it this weekend. One thing I really, really, REALLY need to focus on is my meal planning. I found a few planners on Pinterest, now just to put them into action!

Ok, my cough syrup is kicking in, and I'm starting to get loopy. Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Rest

Every once in a while I need to be reminded to slow down, take time to rest, and just relax. Today was one of those days. I have been feeling exhausted since... well, probably since Thanksgiving, really. I've been going going gone all through the holidays and apparently not sleeping well, and it finally caught up with me. I think God decided he'd had enough of my not listening to his commands and knocked me on my butt today. Especially since it was the Sabbath. I have slept nearly all day. I got up at 8:30 this morning to tell mom I didn't feel well enough to drive to church. I pulled up the internet campus on the computer and watched services from home.
Thank goodness for technology
Then I promptly went to sleep from 10-2, ate an orange, slept til 7, then took a shower. I took the shower hoping it would make me feel better so I could mom on an errand. Ha! I was so exhausted from my shower that I didn't even have the energy to get dressed. At that point I decided to get my shift covered for tomorrow. I'm feeling better, but I think another day of resting will help. Sadly enough, I keep thinking of all the things I can do tomorrow since I don't have to work. No! I need to rest! We'll see what actually happens.

I know my posts haven't been very significant lately. I'll work on it. But right now, I'm going to get back to resting. Good night!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Fits of Sleep

Mr. Wonderful got me a new Fitbit for Christmas! I kind of figured he had, but I wasn't sure until I opened it. Anyway, last year he got me a Fitbit Zip, but this year he upgraded me to a Force... I'll try not to run it over with my car. I'm super excited about it and have been trying to get all of my steps in each day. But additionally, this Fitbit tracks my sleep! I think that's what I was most excited about. I haven't been sleeping well since... I don't know when, but it started getting really bad in November. I wanted to see if I noticed any patterns in my sleep cycle that I could address. Really I thought maybe a neighbor was leaving early for work or something. This is my reading from the past week.
I forgot to log Sunday... oops. 
No real pattern that I can see yet. Friday night looks odd because I set the sleep mode, then turned it off to go do something. I don't remember resetting it around midnight though, so I don't know what happened there And apparently I slept like crap last night. Less than 5 hours total sleep? No wonder I feel exhausted most of the time. I'm going to keep tracking my sleep for a while and see what I can come up with. I may have to look into cutting back on my caffeine in the afternoons or something. It's never bothered me before, but something's gotta give here! Speaking of sleep, I guess I should head that way. Rest well!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

I've got the joy...

Joy, joy, joy, down in my heart! (What?) Down in my heart! (Where?) Down in my heart! (Oh!) I've got the joy, joy, joy joy down in my heart, down in my heart to stay! Ok, so maybe that's not the absolute correct way the song goes, but that's how I always sing it. And I sang it quite a bit today. It was my weapon of choice against wallowing in my annoyance. Every time something would happen that would get on my nerves, make me frustrated, or in some way bother me, I'd start singing that song to myself. It worked rather well, actually. It's hard to stay annoyed when you've got that tune in your head. And just in case you don't just yet, here you go.
You're welcome. :-)

I'm pleased to say that my first official Joy day went pretty well. I don't count yesterday because I didn't have to work and I didn't do much that tested my joy... except waiting until 2:00pm for my first cup of coffee. It was actually kind of funny. I couldn't figure out why everything seemed so bright and harsh, or why it hurt to have my eyes open. About 2 minutes after my first sip of caffeine the world righted and I was good to go. You'd think after 25 years of being a coffee drinker, I'd have figured that one out. Oh well. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Bring on '14

It's that time of year again! Everyone's making New Year's resolutions and vowing that this is the year to stick with it. Working at a gym, the "Resolutioners" can be the most stressful part of the job, so I've been a little adverse to making resolutions the past few years. That being said, I decided to make one this year. There is a lot of stuff I need to work on, but I made one all-encompassing resolution: Be More Organized. I figure if I can be more organized with my spending habits, I will save money. If I'm more organized with my meal planning, I'll eat healthier and probably lose weight. If I'm more organized with my time, I'll feel less stressed. Being more organized will help with a multitude of sins.

I have also chosen my Word of the Year. Last year my word was Love. I wanted to love everyone more. It was definitely difficult. I did great for the first few months, then I ran headlong into a wall. That being said, I think I was able to love people more than if I hadn't been trying to work on it. I was more compassionate and understanding, to the point of annoying others who wanted to be mad. Oops. This year, my word is Joy. Amy and I were at the book store the other day and I kept seeing books about finding hope. Finally I said "I don't need hope, I need joy!" and I realized I had my word. I do have hope for my current situation, but I need to be able to find the joy in the midst of it. I think my theme verse for 2014 may be Philippians 4:4-5.
If you're interested, there is a 4-day devotional available here about having a word for the year. I like having a word of the year. It gives me something to focus on. 

I have so much more to share with you, but I'm starting to get exhausted. I hope everyone has had a pleasant start to 2014. Stay safe!
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