Thursday, September 11, 2014

My Life After Homeschool: Get Healthier

So here we are, four months (thereabouts) post homeschool.  There were several things that I had on my Life After Homeschool bucket list, but today I am going to talk about my health.  Not because it was necessarily at the top of my list of things I wanted to tackle, but because I was just recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes...and also high blood pressure and hypothyroidism (the last of which was some thing that wasn't exactly new, but for reasons I won't go into here, it was kind of a re-diagnosis).  Anyway, because of these "developments" I have had to move the get healthier up the list as far as priorities go.

Being forced to make changes kind of puts a new perspective on things.  Especially with diabetes, I can't just ignore it (well, I guess I COULD, but it would be very foolish to do so).  I can't procrastinate or postpone or take a day off or get to it next week.  It is my reality today...and every day there after.  Which also means that I have to be diligent.  Oh Boy.  This kind of scares me, because I know how I am.  Mediocre should probably be my middle name.

The good thing in all of this is that my numbers aren't horrible...they aren't even having me monitor my blood sugar yet...just medication at this point. So theoretically getting them down shouldn't be too difficult.  But, man all this keeping track and counting carbs and trying to say...figure out how many carbs are in a family favorite recipe that I've made hundreds of time over the last 20+ years...can be a bit overwhelming.

I've had issues with my weight pretty much my entire adult life, and probably the last 10 years or so, I've basically just eaten whatever, and tried not to think about it.  I've maintained the same weight within 10lbs or so all that time.  There have just been so many diet/lifestyle choices out there, and everyone and their doctor seem to think their way is the best.  I just didn't want to deal with all of that.  Being healthy shouldn't have to be so complicated.

Now, I don't really have a choice anymore.  But it's still overwhelming.

CARBS!  Why do you have to be so tasty?

I still want to eat them, but they scare me.   And it saddens me.   I still want to be able to eat pizza, or a bagel...or potatoes.   My homemade chex mix that I make every year around Thanksgiving...that I have a hard time limiting how much I eat of it...that is most assuredly, crazy bad for my blood sugar. :(

My dad was diabetic.  And I remember some of what he did...and he did really well keeping his blood sugar under control.  I wish he was still here so that I could talk with him about stuff.  It didn't seem like he gave up a bunch of stuff.  But there were some things he did stay away from more than others...and I remember how he would proclaim the evils of  "white" foods (potatoes and bread mostly..using the glycemic index as a guide).  But he still ate pasta, and basmati rice.  He did like oatmeal with blackberries...which, I'm not sure I could ever develop a taste for.

And then there is that other dreaded thing.  Exercise.  Blah.  So, I am walking.  But last week I over did it one day and ever since I've been dealing with some back pain...mostly in one particular spot on the right side, that seems to worsen when I'm in bed.  It's frustrating.  I feel like if I could take some advil, I could knock it out...but because of the blood pressure I can't take ibuprofen.  It doesn't seem to bother me as much sitting or walking around.  So at least I can still do the walking...although I'm taking it easy.

Then there is the stigma that kind of goes with type 2 diabetes...that it's my fault.  That I could have prevented it if I had just "taken better care of myself" And even though this may in fact be true, people, society, the media, the medical profession and well meaning friends/acquaintances...(although not everyone) tend to look at you like you're "less than"...or they will offer all kinds of advice about how you can change your lifestyle.  And I guess that for some it is true that they have a lack of knowledge about how to "get healthy" and therefore having loads of people offer their well meaning opinions is helpful.  But, I'm not stupid.  Knowing what it takes to get/be healthy and actually doing it are two different things.  And I want to make changes, and I have already begun making changes, but I will never be someone who gets extreme about it. The thing is, I don't want to go to extremes.   I will never be a vegetarian.  I will never be a NO carb person.  I will never be a paleo person.  That is just not me.  However, with diabetes, I HAVE to be low carb.  Or at least "good" carb.   I don't want to be judged for every little thing I eat or whether or not I exercised that day.

Baby Steps.




 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

The Time Has Come

The end of our homeschool journey has finally arrived.  As of this Tuesday, May 20th 2014, Bridgette will officially be a high school graduate!   It's hard to believe that it's been 8 years since we started on this adventure called homeschooling and that we made it through 4 years of high school!  This year she was able to get in LOTS of theatre activities and has worked on plenty of art work!  She has been in 3 plays and just started rehearsals for her 4th (Disney's The Little Mermaid Jr. opening on June 20th - she was cast as Carlotta (the headmistress in Prince Eric's castle) and also an ensemble sea creature (dancing/singing clam for at least one song "Under the Sea").  Plus she was in two Out of the Box shows (as a volunteer helper for the special needs theatre group).  And has completed close to 2 dozen art projects...with a few still in progress...including her first paid commission!

It's been a busy Senior year and we are glad to be done!

We took this photo early so that we could get
announcements printed up and sent to friends & family.
 
 

By way of celebration, we have a couple things planned.  First we have reservations for the Hoop Dee Doo Musical Revue at Disney, which we are super excited about...the last time we were there was on our 2001 vacation to Disney (before we moved to Florida) when Bridgette was in kindergarten.  It seemed appropriate that since we were there at the beginning of her school years, we should go again at the end!  Then this summer the three of us are going on vacation up to New Hampshire (our home state) spending a week with family, then Brian goes home and Bridgette and I are staying for an extra week and spending some time with my best friend (in Maine) who, with the exception of a few hours in 2009, I probably haven't seen since Bridgette was a baby.  I can't wait to spend time with her...we email a lot, but it's not the same as hanging out together! 

So what's on the agenda for her future...well only God knows the answer to that...but in the meantime as she sees how things play out, she plans to take some time to enjoy more of the things she loves (theatre, art, perhaps even finish those last two chapters of her novel she started in 10th grade?)...after this summer she may take some acting and/or voice lessons.  She has a week after we get back from vacation before her 2 week summer camp starts.  This year's Show in Two Weeks is going to be Schoolhouse Rock...so that should be lots of fun!  I'm sure at some point she will need to get a job, but we'll get through our busy summer first, before thinking about that.




Thursday, March 6, 2014

Long Time...No Post

Man, I really suck at this lately :P  Not that it matters probably...I don't think many people read my posts.

Anyway, sorry about the absence...we've been in the South Pacific the last couple of months!  Ha Ha!  Yep, my girl was in South Pacific (the musical that is) and now it's done and over with.  Sad, because it was pretty awesome...yet glad because it was a long run (compared to what we're used to).  It ran for 3 weekends...for a total of 11 performances (including the preview night and a private show on the last Saturday for a volunteer group).

This is Nellie and her Honey Buns :)
(Bridgette is second in from the left in the flowered romper)

Mom & Dad with their "special nurse"

She's in love, she's in love (repeat like a gazillion times) with a wonderful guy!"

The Cast of South Pacific (minus a couple nurses)
(Bridgette is the 4th nurse in from the right)
 
 
And of course Bridgette is still plugging away at her senior year of high school...despite a major case of "senioritis"!  As of today, she has 52 days to go!  We hope to be finished by May 23rd!
 
 
The other BIG event, is that we are now parents of an 18 year old.  GAH...where in the world did the time go...wasn't she just 18 MONTHS old, like yesterday?! 
 
Technically, we are only parents of a 4 1/2 year old though...because she's a leap day baby we get keep her "young" for a bit longer than most people!  lol   She is celebrating with her 2 besties this weekend...it's a Muppet Madness Party...everything is letter M themed, (Muppet is her nickname) from decorations, to food, to what they do (mostly watching movies that begin with M and playing Mario kart)!
 
Our Leapling!  Happy "Half" Birthday (2/28 - 3/1/2014)!!!
 
The picture above in the blue, is from the first part of her senior photo shoot.  We are going to do some more soon, as our first day was really cold and windy...and we had wanted to do some in another outfit.  This weekend is supposed to be nice weather so I think we'll probably stop at a nice park on the way home from church to finish them up. 
 
Well - that's about it for now.
 
OH...ps: this happens to be my 400th post...what do you know!
 

 
 

 


Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy ALMOST 2014!

It's been quite a while since I've blogged, but since my daughter drew a new blog header for me for Christmas (isn't it adorable?!), I figure it's time to get back at it.  It's almost a new year and I'm thinking I should try to blog more, but I'm not sure what direction I should take things.

I know those who get a lot of traffic are ones who post things every day, and while I'd like to have more readers/comments, that probably requires more effort than I want to put into it.  At least right now anyway.  Perhaps when we are done school.

I'm moving into a transitional phase of my life.  Only 5 months left of homeschooling Bridgette.  That's it. FIVE months and she'll officially be done with high school.  So, I'm still considering what sorts of things I want to pursue in my post homeschool life. 

I'm sure I will still be involved with Bridgette's life.  She's become more and more involved with theatre the past 6 months, and was recently cast in her first "main stage" (as opposed to youth theatre) show of South Pacific, albeit just in the ensemble...but still it's all very exciting.  I joke (kind of), that I am her personal secretary...keeping her theatre schedule straight and making sure that she gets where she needs to be, when she needs to be there!  I think she needs to make it "BIG" so that I can get paid for my services (retro-actively of course!) ha ha!

Other than that, I should really start focusing on life after homeschool.  I have thoughts that perhaps my house will be cleaner (ha ha)...but we'll see about that.  I'd like to work on my scrapbooking.  Maybe get into photography more.  Ideally, I'd like to find something that maybe Bridgette and I can do together as a business...to make a little money, so that she can have some income, but still be able to pursue her theatre passion.  There are no plans for her to go to college, and I am more than happy to have stay here at home for as long as she wishes...we've been separated from all of our family (through death or moving) that I think the three of us are clinging to each other for dear life!

And then of course there are spiritual endeavors to work on...getting into God's word more and listening for whatever it is that the Lord wants me to do in the coming months.  I've sort of let the posts of that nature slide the last few months...not sure what direction future posts may go...but I hope to do more at some point.

Anyway...wishing you all a blessed & happy new year!


ps:  I'm going to try creating some "signatures" for my blog and see which I like best...here is one...what do you think?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Trying To Hide From God

Genesis 3:22   "And the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever."

*from the footnotes in my Life Application Bible: "If they had continued to live in the garden and eat from the tree of life they would have lived forever.  But eternal life in a state of sin would mean forever trying to hide from God."

 Hmm - that's interesting…a state of sin = trying to hide from God?

 Is that what I do?  Try to "hide" from God?  When I think about the times that I avoid reading/praying by "forgetting" or neglecting to take the time, or being busy…is it that I'm sub-consciously thinking that maybe if I stay away from reading the word and praying to God, I can "avoid" God's…discipline, judgment, correction…in a sense "hiding" from him.  If I don't read about it or have a conversation with him about it, can I pretend that everything is okay - that there is nothing in my heart, thoughts or actions that need changing?

This reminds me of when Bridgette was little and we would catch her doing something wrong and give her an opportunity to change her behavior before getting a spanking.  We'd start counting and before we would get to 3 she would cover her butt with her hands to avoid the spanking (trying to "hide" from being disciplined) instead of acknowledging the wrong and changing the behavior.  As an adult I can see my own version of trying to "cover my butt", when really I just need to face things head on and allow God to do whatever it is he needs to do in my life in order for me to change my behavior (repentance)…even if it means a momentary sting of pain.  

Hebrews 12:11 "No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it."

In reality though, I cannot hide from God…he sees and knows everything that concerns me!  And while in some respects that seems scary, it is also comforting to know that despite God knowing everything about me…he still loves me.  In fact he loved me enough to send his only son, Jesus to die for me…the Lamb of God who takes away not only the sin of the world, but MY sin…so that I could have eternal life!  Why would I want to hide from a God who has promised me that?  I don't want to hide…instead I want to be running toward him!  We used to sing a song at church years ago called Where We Belong that reminds me of this! 

Lord, help me to fight the urge to want to hide, and instead fill me with the desire to RUN to your throne, where I belong!

Where We Belong by Hillsong

There is no height or depth
Neither life nor death
That can take me from all that I find
Here now in Your Glory Lord
No other powers or love
The things of now or to come
There's nothing on earth in this life
That could ever separate us Lord

Your Love is never ending
To your hands we surrender
Where all our sins are washed away
Your Grace beyond reason
Has paid for our freedom
We're made alive in You

We run to Your Throne
Where we belong
Every heart will sing
That Jesus is Lord
Casting all else aside
For the joy of our Christ
Let Your Glory fall
Our hearts are filled with Your Fire

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tubby Little Cubby All Stuffed With Fluff

Apparently I forgot to post this back when I first wrote it...But as I mentioned in an earlier post, Bridgette was Winnie the Pooh in Lakeland Community Theatre's youth theater production of The House at Pooh Corner a couple weekends ago (September 20-22)!  Here are a couple of pictures :) 

Isn't she the most adorable Pooh Bear!

We are so proud of her...she did an AMAZING job!
 
The Cast and Crew!
 

Staying within God's Pleasant Boundaries

Genesis 27…(the whole chapter...go ahead read it...I dare you! :o))

The first thing that came to mind was that I sort of felt sorry for Esau in a way.  Here is this guy, who I can only imagine was probably made fun of his whole life because he was "red & hairy" and apparently he didn't smell all that good either.  And I can relate to how in chapter 25, Esau was so hungry that he would do or say just about anything for something to eat..including stupidly giving away his birthright.  He was careless, but I can understand.  But the part where I really felt sorry for him was when he was crying out to his father after his brother Jacob had stolen HIS blessing right out from under his nose…"Bless me - me too, my father!" in vs. 34, and then in vs. 38 "Do you have only one blessing, my father?  Bless me too, my father!"   Can't you just hear Esau's desperation.  The realization that  his brother had deceived his father and stolen what should have been his.  BUT…it wasn't really supposed to be Esau's blessing, at least not according to the word God spoke in chapter 25 when the Lord said to Rebekah in vs. 23 that "the older will serve the younger".    However, it seems to me that  Esau didn't know this…nor does it seem that  Jacob did either…only Rebekah knew this and it looks as if  Jacob was essentially being a "mama's boy" and took advantage of the situation.     The situation was a little different  with Isaac and Ishmael…I'm sure that Ishmael knew and understood from the moment Isaac was born that the blessing  wasn't his to have and so it seems that his anger was unjustified…in other words he had no right to be angry, because after all he was just the son of Sarah's maidservant Hagar.  But with Esau, despite God's plan it seems to me he had a right to be angry.  His mother & brother had conspired against him, and were deceitful in order to "make God's plan" happen.

Which brings me to my next thought - Was this how God intended for things  to play out?   No, I'm pretty sure that God's plan did not include deception.   Obviously, he knew how it would play out,  but it surely wasn't how he desired it to happen.  It's kind of like Abraham with Hagar - people knowing what God wants, but because they don't see it happening in the way they think it should or in the time they think it should, they then go and take matters into their own hands.

I see one of two extremes that usually take place.  We either respond like in these two situations (Abraham & Hagar…Rebekah & Jacob), and try to take matters into our own hands thinking  we know better how things should be done.  The "oh I'll just help God out with this"  or "God obviously doesn't know what he's doing" type attitudes.   Or we go the opposite and sit back and do nothing - much like the humorous story of the man who believed that God would rescue him from a flood, and waits on top of his roof as he refuses the help of 2 boats and a helicopter offering to rescue him…all because his expectation of how God will rescue him is something different.  Then when the flood consumes him and he meets God in heaven asking why he wasn’t rescued…God replies, "I sent you 2 boats and a helicopter, what more did you want?!"

Why do we do that as people?   There is a fine line I think,  between taking over and doing nothing.   I struggle with this…trying to find that "middle ground".  That place where, I'm not trying to be in control, but I'm not just sitting back passively hoping that God will perform miracles either.   And yet despite the times when I find that I'm out of balance…when I've gone too far to one side or the other, the Lord always leads me back to the path I need to be on.

Romans 8:28  And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Psalm 16:6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.

These two verses tell me that even when I mess up, and start heading off in directions I shouldn't, that because I love him, and have been called according to HIS purpose, God will work all things for MY good.  And keeping in mind the delightful inheritance that awaits me, gives me more of an incentive to watch out for those boundaries, knowing that God has placed them "in pleasant places" because he loves me and wants me to keep walking towards him!

Lord, help me to better stay within your pleasant boundaries…not straying to far to the left or the right, keeping my eyes focused straight ahead on you, because you have my best at heart!