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Tuesday, July 22, 2014


So, for the first time in a couple of years I am on vacation and actually get to travel! The GEMS Leadership Training Conference is this week in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We're leaving around 8:30 this morning. I really should be in bed now, but I've been busy packing, doing laundry, and just finding a place for everything before I go. I don't get back until Sunday sometime and I know I won't have a lot of time to prepare before going back to work Monday. I guess it's just my way of preparing for that inevitability and to clear some of my mind clutter too.

I have big hopes for this time away. It's a time away from my job, away from my house and away from my family. It should give me plenty of room for some much needed soul searching. I want, no. I need to find my calling. I need to find God's purpose for my life. I don't expect to have all the answers, I just want to feel like I'm on the right path and working towards the right goals. I'm tired of floundering through life. I know I have a great life in terms of an amazing husband, and three healthy, beautiful, unique children. There was a time I thought that was all I'd ever need, but I'm now finding there's still something missing. Some part of me that can't find peace until I am fulfilling a purpose greater than I am now.

Okay, well this post took a sorry turn for the dark and depressing! Sorry about that. I am actually quite excited about my trip and just wanted to take a few minutes to share where my head is at. If there's WiFi I may try and sneak in a blog post while I'm away. If not I'm sure I'll have plenty of stories to share when I return.

Have a great week!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Progress with Primal Strength Systems

As you know I've been doing a fitness class called Primal Strength Systems. I'm in my fourth week now and loving (and sometimes hating) every minute of it. I decided to do a video post since it's been a while.

I've made a lot of progress over the last month and I've proved to myself that I am capable of so much more! I've had some personal bests that have really encouraged me in my journey. Tonight I was able to hold up my own body weight on that damn gym rope. It was only for a short time and only a couple of inches off the ground, but I DID IT!

I'm actually holding up my own weight!
Well, I'm off. I just had to share my excitement and progress with you tonight while it's still fresh and while I can still type without muscle pain!

And in case you missed it and you're wondering what kind of equipment we've been using here's a demo video.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Everything is Awesome....

Today, just for a moment everything is awesome! I am awesome! This morning was my sixth class with Primal Strength Systems and today I kicked ass!

It's getting easier to lift the 75 lbs bag. (I said easier not easy.) I also surprised myself with my improved ability to pull myself up from the ground using the thick rope. (You know the dreaded rope you had to climb in gym class as a kid) We did this one the first class and I could barely lift myself off the ground. Now I can go hand over hand and pull my body up and back down again (my feet stay on the ground). One of these days I'll get someone to take a video or a pic of it to show you.

It's amazing what I've accomplished in three short weeks. I feel like everyone should be able to tell just by looking at me, but there's no obvious physical changes. (I checked. I took pictures to compare. It's only minute changes that I can see.) That will come in time, I just have to be patient and persistent. I am quite proud of myself for what I have accomplished. I continue to amaze myself. Seeing the things that my body is capable of just makes me want to do more and more amazing things!

It's funny on my way home I had so much to say and now I'm drawing a blank. So, I guess I'll keep it short and sweet today!

Have a great weekend!

Friday, July 11, 2014

An Ode to a Mug

Oh travel mug how I loved thee!
And then you went and died on me.

You've been there for me through many cups of coffee to many more cups of tea. You didn't judge me when I changed your contents. You gladly kept everything hot, sometimes too hot! And then I discovered that you kept my cold water, really cold, and I knew it was love! How will I ever manage to live without you?

Today is a sad day indeed. I will miss you Travelly my mug. I took you wherever I went. I'm so sorry about that dent. You've always been a good friend.

Farewell dear one! It's time to buy a new one!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Finding Style

Friday I went to Reitman's to see if I could find a light colored shirt for my fitness class. It's really hot working out in a black shirt! While I was there I tried on a number of dresses. I seriously love wearing dresses. Over the last 10 months or so I've been putting in effort in terms of trying to find my own style. In fact, prior to October 2013, I hadn't worn lipstick in years. I still don't wear a lot of makeup, just eyeliner, mascara and now lipstick. I've learned what colors look best on me and I'm still learning what I like and what looks good. It's still a little weird for me as I go about finding my own style but I am enjoying creating this part of my identity. 

Anyway, I found a couple of dresses I liked but I wasn't 100% sure so I didn't buy them. Sunday I was going to go back but wanted to check out Pennington's first. They only had halter and floor length dresses which wasn't what I was looking for. These stores tend to really annoy me. There are clothes I'd love to wear, but I can't justify spending that much money on one item. My visit got cut short as I was needed at home. I figured I would just go to Reitman's a little later. Unfortunately, by the time I was able to get out again everything was closed and I ended up at Walmart.

The dress selection was slim but I found one I was willing to try on. I was highly disappointed. Can someone please tell me what is up with this new style where a dress is short in front and long in back? It makes no sense to me and honestly I think they're awful.

Could you not decide if you wanted a short dress or a long one and went with both?  
In the end, I managed to buy a magenta sleeveless scoop neck top, sandals, a new bra, and underwear. I always forget how much better I feel when I get new underclothes. Nothing beats having the girls up where they belong! What we wear under our clothes can have such a positive impact on our self-esteem. It's the little things in life that put a smile on my face. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Another Successful Class

It's Thursday already! At least this is a super short week. I don't think I'd survive if it wasn't.

Last night was my third class with Primal Strength Systems. We started the class in the rain and ended by getting eaten alive!

Finally another woman has joined us and this time we all actually introduced ourselves. We are all at various degrees of fitness but what I find fascinating is that each of us has a strength in at least one area. I love my squats!

The other woman in the class is amazing! She's got seven month old twins! And she said one side of her body is weaker than the other (I'm not sure why). But she's truly amazing. She can't do everything so the trainer gives her alternatives and you can see she's really trying. She's my hero of the week! It just goes to prove anyone at any fitness level can do this!

So, I thought we had gotten off "easy" until the end when we had to do that damned bear crawl! I was crawling by the last 5 feet but it wasn't exactly a bear crawl.

It's only been 3 classes and I can see improvement in my strength already! This is where my stubbornness really is a blessing. I had to do farmer walks with around 70lbs in each hand and about halfway I wanted to drop them but kept going just out of sheer stubbornness! The 75 lbs bag is getting slightly easier to lift. I've been able to lift it without falling on my duff and without help. I even managed to do 5 front squats with it.

The best part about this class is that I'm not self conscious. For the most part I keep up with everyone else. And I really look forward to class!

If you're ever interested in joining or have questions please feel free to contact Terry!

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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Lifetime of Searching

Happy Canada Day!

Well, I've gone and done it now. I'm all wired up and need to rant! As you know I've been in this personal funk. I've been in it for so long now it's getting hard to remember what having hopes and dreams felt like. Don't get me wrong, I'm not ready to end it all or anything so dire. I have a pretty fantastic life, but as I mentioned before there's a big hole in my life that I can't seem to fill.

Let's see, where to begin. So, at 17 I thought I knew exactly what I wanted to be when I grew up. I was positive that I would be a reporter. It had been strongly suggested by my high school guidance counselor that I go into journalism and not only did it seem like I had an aptitude for it, but it also fit with my interests. I did a co-op placement at the local newspaper and loved it.

However, journalism in college was a completely different ball game and I realized this was not what I wanted to do. I stuck it out and passed...barely. I did find that I had a knack for layout and design so after a maternity leave contract ended I decided to go back to school once again.

This time I took web design. I rocked that course. I did so well I ended up tutoring other students in my own class. But when I had to face the real world I didn't have the confidence in myself or what I could do and I didn't put a lot of effort into my job search. I did some small business websites for friends, but that was about the extent of it. Web design also took a crazy turn for the dynamic and I was lost in the wilderness. I'm good with design, not so good with learning new languages.

So, I entered the technical support and customer service world and stayed at call centers for the most part over the next 12 years. Once you're in a call center type job it's really difficult to get back out. A couple of years ago, my technical support contract ended and I was able to get into the Second Career program through Employment Ontario.

I ended up taking the Addictions and Community Service Worker program at Everest College. I learned a lot through this program. I was a leader in my classroom. I made really decent marks and when I graduated I was certain that I would be able to find a job this time. I had self-confidence and the perseverance to apply, apply, apply. What I hadn't counted on was a lack of opportunities for full time work in the field. I admit my teacher did tell us over and over again this is not the field to be making a lot of money, but I did think I could find something full time.

I bought into the Second Career hype that over the next five years social service and community service workers were going to be in high demand. There's a demand all right. A demand for casual, part-time employees with no real hope for more.

Social and Community Service Workers Regional Trend
After a year of looking and only being able to get casual part-time work I threw in the towel. Yes, maybe I did give up too easily, but I was heart broken. I'd finally found my passion. I'd finally found what that I felt I'd been called to do. Being a leader in the classroom just doesn't translate to the real world of job searching.

Knowing what you're good at doesn't promise you a job. Maybe this is coming off as conceited but I promise you this is not about my ego. For the first time in my life I've had a glimpse of what I've been missing throughout my entire employment history. This glimpse has taken what I thought I knew and thrown it out the window. I thought that all I ever really wanted was to have a stable job with normal daytime hours and weekends off. And maybe there was a time that would have been enough for me, but I caught that glimpse of more and I can't seem to let it go.

The question is, where do I go from here?

Do I go back to school again, only this time go big or go home and try the university route? I have to admit I'm quite gun-shy about going back to school. How many stories have you heard about recent graduates not being able to find jobs? I know I've heard plenty and I've experienced a few myself. Plus, there's the whole issue of how would I afford it even if I could get in.

Do I attempt entrepreneurship and start my own company? There's a lot of risk there and an initial investment that, let's face it, I don't have. Plus, I have a family to support so is the risk really worth it?

Do I stay where I am even though I feel like I lose another piece of myself everyday? I have decent hours so I can enjoy my evenings and weekends. Except that I'm left so drained at the end of the day I don't really enjoy my time off. Oh, but don't forget the old adage "at least I have a job".

Do I put myself through the humiliation of another job search? I'm a Jane of all trades and master of none. Have you ever tried to look for a job but not known where to even start?

So, I have options. (Insert eye roll here and sarcastic "yay".) Maybe we should be teaching our children that the ideal dream job just isn't out there. Find a job that you can stand, one that doesn't take away who you are, pays the bills and is just...good...enough.

Don't worry, I know that's ridiculous and jaded. Believe me, I want my kids to pursue their dreams and to actually be able to surpass their own imaginations! But I also want my kids to see that I've done everything I possibly could to accomplish my own dreams no matter how terrifying they may seem.

~End Rant~

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Looking Forward and Setting New Goals

As I sit down to write this I can see how far I've come and yet the next part of this journey may prove to be even more challenging. I come to you today to share my success and my failures. On March 6, 2014 I started Isagenix. Around the same time I joined what's called the IsaBody Challenge. This is a 16 week challenge to inspire achieving your goals and a chance to win prizes. I completed this challenge as of last night. In four months, I lost 35 lbs and a total of 23 inches. I planned on adding exercise, but never did quite manage it. So, this release of weight was done without adding fitness.

I dutifully had my husband take my "after" pictures and naturally needed to compare them to the before pictures from March. I'm nervous to post these because there's so much of me in them, but I'm the queen of the over-share so why stop now?

Before and After Photos from March 2014 and June 2014
There you have it. My successes! I am quite proud of myself for sticking it out, but this next leg of the journey I want to make even more changes. Lately, I've done a lot of self-reflecting and I have more willpower and determination that I ever imagined. However, I can see where I really need to put in some serious effort to make lasting changes. My issues with food are far from over. I'm sure my weight loss would have been even more astounding had I managed to better deal with my emotional eating.

I started a new IsaBody Challenge last night. This time I am focusing more on energy and performance than weight loss. Obviously, my ultimate goal is still weight loss, but I need to change my overall focus. This challenge will run until October 18, 2014 and over the next four months I plan to work on my emotional eating as well as getting fit. I've already started a fitness class that I will be doing twice a week for 11 weeks (possibly longer). As for the emotional eating I will be working on awareness and finding new ways to work with my emotions. It took years to develop my emotional eating and it's going to take time to replace bad habits with good ones. I believe support, awareness, and creating a new reward system will be the keys to success in this next part of my journey.

The biggest help to achieving any goal is having a great support system! I'd love to hear about your weight loss journey or struggles with emotional eating. Feel free to contact me anytime! 

Friday, June 27, 2014

Weekend Happiness

Happy Friday!

So, last night we had a visit from our new pastor and his wife. I admit I was a little nervous. I haven't had much of a chance to get to know them. I was a little worried we wouldn't have anything to talk about.

Well, I worried needlessly of course. The conversation flowed easily and they're both quite funny and easy to talk to. My non-Christian husband stayed for most of the visit and chatted easily as well. I really do have the most amazing husband!

I'm really looking forward to this weekend. I have four days off! The kids are done school today. I really pray that we have good weather for the weekend. I am in need of some time outdoors to just relax and get some much needed thinking done. I'm hoping we can get to the beach for a day. I just love being at the water. Maybe I will even manage to read a whole book!

I hope you all have a fun and safe weekend!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

A New Adventure

So, I recently mentioned that I was starting a new fitness regime. Here is a video of some of what I'll be doing with Primal Strength Systems.

Last night was my first class with Primal Strength Systems. As with any new thing you try I was nervous upon arriving. I parked where I thought I should park but later discovered a parking lot right next to the training area. As I got closer to the training area (which is on a school football field) I realized all of the other participants were men, except for the instructor's girlfriend. I was quite relieved that she was there! It turns out she was only there this one time.

We started by running from one line to the next and back. We were to do this 10 times. My first lap I kept up, but as each lap continued I fell further and further behind. Everyone waited for me to finish before continuing on which was really nice.

We did some stretches and then push ups and body squats. I managed to do 6 real pushups and 4 knee pushups. I rock the squats! So, at least I've got that!

We did lunge walks which are simple and seem easy until you have to do a few laps of them. Then we did bear crawls. This was horrendous but completely effective! I was practically crawling to the finish line. We followed this with a crab crawl but all I could manage was a scuttle on my rearend. I did another bear crawl instead. After all the bear crawls I was feeling quite nauseous but I persevered.

We did a series of front squats of varying levels. I managed to front squat with the 50 lbs bag and also with a rock that's heavier than it looks. There were heavier front squat options that some of the others did. After the front squats we moved onto pulling the sled. The sled is this weight rack of sorts with a rope tied to one end. I had to take both ends of the rope over my shoulder and pull the sled from one line to the next. Again this seems super easy but it's not. Although once you get your momentum it gets better.

We also did inverted rows on three types of ropes. I did okay with the rings but it's definitely a challenge. Do you remember gym class and having to try to climb the rope? Yup, that's one of the ropes. I could barely pull myself up with my feet on the ground. Then I tried with a smaller rope that you take an an end in both hands and this was a little better.

I impressed myself with the shoulder presses. Again we had different options of varying difficulty. I started with the rock. Then I wanted to try the "log" and the keg. I managed to do 4 presses on each. I got a little cocky with the keg until the water inside of it shifted and made the whole exercise a lot more challenging.

We finished with loaded walks. I did two of the three variations. I started with the 75 lbs bag and immediately fell on my duff. It was funny. I tried again and the instructor helped me get it on my shoulder so I could move it to the front of my arms and then walk with it from one line to the next and back. I also carried a keg that was heavier than the one I used for the shoulder press.

I may have missed a few things, but you get the general idea. So, first off I am proud to say I didn't throw up even though I really thought I would. Second I stuck it through to the end and believe me there were moments I wanted to give up. Everyone was really great at encouraging each other not to give up. I'll finish by saying that you should see a whole new me in 11 weeks because this is kick your ass kind of exercise! I'm also starting to wonder if I enjoy torturing myself because I'm going to be doing this twice a week...

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Renewed Love Affair

My mom recently reminded me that I used to love the rain. Anytime it would rain heavy in the summer I would go outside and just turn my face to the torrential downpour. I remember running in the rain and jumping in puddles. Somewhere along the way I'd forgotten this pure joy.

Yesterday, it rained most of the day. I still didn't think much of it, but I worked all day. I don't have a window so I don't really get to see the weather much. But last night I could hear the rain coming down hard and I went outside. I stood on my front step, turned my face up to the sky and smiled. My daughter thought it was quite funny to see her momma outside getting soaked. I remember the pure bliss of being in a nice warm rain. I remember why I've never owned an umbrella.

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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Where's Waldo?

I've come to realize that I've been over thinking this whole blog thing again. I find when my mind is in chaos I avoid writing. I guess I'm tired of telling the world that I'm a complete mess. I want a happy, positive, exciting blog where people will read it and talk about it. In reality, I want people to talk about me and say good things about me. Ah, the ego is such a fickle thing.

The truth is this, I enjoy writing. I first started this blog for myself and if it helped someone else that would be a great bonus.

The past couple of years have been a time of self discovery. I wish I could say that I have all the answers or even some answers for myself. I truly don't have any answers. In some ways I wish I could go back to when I thought I knew what I wanted out of life. I really thought all I wanted was a stable job, decent hours, stat holidays off. I thought that would be enough for me. What I'm discovering in this journey is that I need more. This is causing me some guilt. Why can't what I have now just be enough? I am truly blessed with an amazing husband and three healthy unique children whom I love dearly. But even this isn't enough. And that makes me feel like a horrible person. If I'm really honest I'd also admit that my spiritual life is in dire straights. At my core I know what I believe, however, I have a nonexistent spiritual discipline. I come up with plans and ideas but have no follow through. I crave a relationship with God and yet I do nothing about it. Again, with the guilt.

So, there you have it. The whole ugly truth. I started this blog to vent my crazies and somewhere along the line I decided people wouldn't want to read about all my mad ramblings. I've become hidden in this bubble of trying to please others and worrying about someone taking offence. Well, I will still try not to be blatantly offensive. I wouldn't want to hurt someone on purpose, but this blog is called Being Elle. It's time to find her again.

Wish me luck!

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Thursday, June 12, 2014

I Once Was Blind....

As you know I've been following the Isagenix program and I've lost some weight. I've lost 35 lbs to be exact! The thing is I haven't felt like I've really lost that much. That is until I came across some pictures from my birthday last November.

I guess being so big for so long I still see myself as 35 lbs heavier even though I know I've lost this weight. And a big part of that is also because I've struggled along the way. I have to constantly remind myself that I didn't gain an extra 100 lbs overnight by creating good habits. It's going to take time for me to develop better habits. I made it this far and haven't included regular exercise (although it's always on my to do list).

I've decided to show you what I can finally see. Although, I admit that this is really difficult for me to put out to the vast interweb. I feel like I need to. I need to show you the progress I've made. If only to record this moment in time for myself.

I've still got a long way to go, but I'm going to give myself this moment in time to just be proud of myself for getting this far.

Way to go me! 

Birthday pictures from November 2013 compared to Progress pictures June 2014
This is what I've accomplished in 3 months. My next three months my focus will be more on getting fit. I've signed up for some super intense training. I'm really excited and completely terrified, but I'll share more about my new fitness regime soon! 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Ground Hog Day

Well, it looks like I've gone and done it again. I've left you all hanging. I think I've figured it out though (by it I mean me). Do you remember the old adage "if you don't have anything nice don't day it at all"? I haven't had a lot of nice things to say lately so I've kept to myself. In fact, I haven't spent a lot of time on social media either.

I have to say the past couple of years have really grown and stretched me. I've learned a lot about myself and my goals. There's still a long way to go, but honestly who can say they're finished? Have you accomplished your perfect self? Yeah, I didn't think so. We're works in progress and under construction.

All of this to say....


If you've kept up with Being Elle at all, you may remember that I started a program called Isagenix on March 6. Through this process I've given up my favoritest thing in the whole wide world. No, not my kids....I gave up coffee. I've had one cup at a family dinner at the beginning of May, but other than that, no coffee. I dropped it cold turkey too. It's funny, when it's the right time to do something it can be extremely easy. I don't have any explanation as to how I've done it short of it was the right time and this is coming from a now former coffee junkie.

Okay, so here it goes...the good, the bad and the ugly.

When I started this journey on March 6, 2014 I weighed 267 lbs. This is the heaviest I've ever been and it scared the hell out of me. (I may have gone up to 270 but I hadn't weighed myself regularly.) After my first month following Isagenix I lost 20 lbs. It was fantastic.

And then I hit an emotional wall. I still maintained my weight and lost a pound here and there, but I really wasn't following the way I wanted to. What I did do, however, was reach out to my Isagenix team for support and while I still struggled it definitely helped get me on the right track. I'm overweight for a reason. I didn't put this weight on with good eating habits now did I? And I certainly didn't put this weight on overnight. I need to cut myself a little slack and just keep trying.

As of this morning, I have lost 33 lbs! I've reached one of my biggest goals which was to get below 235 lbs. I was at 235 lbs for a long time until I got pregnant with my daughter (who's almost 7 years old). Now, I've got to work on my self image. I still see myself as 267 lbs. Losing 33 lbs doesn't feel like very much, and yet - it's 33 lbs!

I'm so very thankful for the people around me who support me and encourage me along the way. My family definitely deserves a prize for putting up with me! I think what scared me the most was when people started telling me I was an inspiration to others. Who? Me? No way! Now, I am completely an extrovert, so my reaction was a surprise to me. I've always wanted to be an inspiration to others, but to actually be an inspiration was and is totally terrifying. I think that's why I decided to come out of social media hiding and start sharing my journey again. It's like I'm Punxsutawney Phil poking his (or in my case her) head out. I'm not going to let my shadow scare me back into hiding even with whatever bumps and bruises I may run into along the way. I'm here to stay.

We're getting a group together to do a 30 day challenge to get ready for summer. If you're at all interested I invite you to email me or check out the Facebook page Summer Ready in 30 Days. There's a great group of people to support you!

What have you got to lose other than pounds and inches?

* Enroll with a 30 Day Isagenix Cleansing and Fat Burning System (or equivalent) or have equivalent system on hand prior to May 31 (to start June 2) or June 5 (to start June 9) - you must have active membership. Takes 2 to 3 days to receive product.*

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day!!!!!!!!

Good morning! Happy Mother's Day!

Spring has finally sprung, my furnace is finally off and it's a beautiful day.

On this Mother's Day, I'm grateful for so many blessings. I have an amazing husband who loves me even when I'm completely hormonal and irrational. I have three very individual children who are healthy and show me they love me every day. I have an amazing church family who I can lean on through the good and bad.

I have a mom who faithfully prays for me and supports me in all that I do. She's always just a quick message or phone call away! And she's a pretty great Gramma too! I love you Mom!

On this Mother's Day, I pray that you have an amazing day. For those who do not have children or who've lost loved ones: it is my prayer that you have a day filled with joy and happy memories.

Happy Mother's Day!

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

From Mad Ramblings to Clarity

WARNING: Female content below.

I debated posting my ramblings of a mad woman from yesterday,  but decided I would save you from the crazy rant and just give you a brief overview.

It started Sunday night. I hit a severe low. I went to bed and cried and cried. My poor husband didn't know what to do. He's a fixer. Try explaining that you don't know what's wrong to a fixer. It doesn't work very well. Still, he held me and thats what I needed.

My low mood continued throughout most of yesterday. I've known something was off for a while. It seems to come and go. I spent time writing all of my crazy thoughts down and I talked with two of my closest friends. They don't sugar coat it for me and tell me when I'm being ridiculous. Making a doctor appointment was strongly suggested. Which I did. I go on May 9th.

By the time I got to making the appointment it started to dawn on me. All of these problems that I have relate back to one thing, my period. It seems I have yet again "forgotten" that I have a real medical diagnosis. I have premenstrual dysohoric disorder (PMDD). I'd somehow convinced myself that by losing weight, lowering my caffeine intake and eating healthy all my symptoms would go away. I'd also convinced myself the only trouble I had with my period was just the heavy flow which I've mostly been managing. The thing is there's so much more to it than a heavy flow. My mood fluctuations, my food cravings, migraines, and even the times I'm downright exhausted to the nights I can't get to sleep. All of these can be explained by PMDD.

I don't want to use PMDD as an excuse and I think that's why I go back to thinking it's just all my fault that I can't control these things. Which leads me to feeling like I'm failing at life or that I'm somehow deficient as a human being. Why can't I get my act together? What is so wrong with me that I continue to fail at these things.

In remembering that I have PMDD it helps me to see that I'm not some horrible person who enjoys causing havoc in my home or annoying my friends with yet another crazy rambling. I'm sure ny friends say to themselves "Oh, there she goes again" *insert eye roll here*.

So, all of this to say: Hi! My name is Elle and I have PMDD.

I'm going to act accordingly and work on managing my PMDD as a whole,  not as separate problems. I will try my best not to use it as an excuse for being an unpleasant human being at times. But if I've got a bit of a 'tude please, forgive me.

Here's and excerpt from a website, Medicine Plus, that explains PMDD:

The causes of PMS and PMDD have not been found.

Hormone changes that occur during a woman's menstrual cycle may play a role.

PMDD affects between 3% and 8% of women during the years when they are having menstrual periods.

Many women with this condition have:

Severe depression
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)

Other factors that may play a role include:

Alcohol abuse
Being overweight
Drinking large amounts of caffeine
Having a mother with a history of the disorder


The symptoms of PMDD are similar to those of PMS. However, they are generally more severe and debilitating and include a least one mood-related symptom. Symptoms occur during the week just before menstrual bleeding and usually improve within a few days after the period starts.

Five or more of the following symptoms must be present to diagnose PMDD, including one mood-related symptom:

No interest in daily activities and relationships
Feeling of sadness or hopelessness, possible suicidal thoughts
Food cravings or binge eating
Mood swings with periods of crying
Panic attacks
Irritability or anger that affects other people
Physical symptoms, such as bloating, breast tenderness, headaches, and joint or muscle pain
Problems sleeping
Trouble concentrating


A healthy lifestyle is the first step to managing PMDD.

Eat healthy foods with more whole grains, vegetables, fruit, and little or no salt, sugar, alcohol, and caffeine.

Get regular aerobic exercise throughout the month to redue the severity of PMS symptoms.

If you have problems sleeping, try changing your sleep habits before taking medicines for insomnia.

Keep a diary or calendar to record:
The type of symptoms you are having

Antidepressants may be helpful.

The first option is usually an antidepressant known as a selective serotonin-reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). You can take SSRIs in the second part of your cycle up until your period starts, or for the whole month. Ask your doctor.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) may be used either with or instead of antidepressants. During CBT, you have about 10 visits with a mental health professional over several weeks.

Other treatments that may help include:
Birth control pills may decrease or increase PMS symptoms, including depression
Diuretics may be useful for women who gain a lot of weight from fluid retention
Nutritional supplements -- such as vitamin B6, calcium, and magnesium -- may be recommended

Other medicines (such as Depo-Lupron) suppress the ovaries and ovulation

Pain relievers such as aspirin or ibuprofen may be prescribed for headache, backache, menstrual cramping and breast tenderness

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Happy Birthday Shakespeare!

Today marks William Shakespeare's 450th birthday. Normally, I wouldn't even notice this kind of thing. I just happened to hear about it on the radio. But, this got me thinking. Where would we be without Shakespeare today? I am no Shakespearean expert. (The fact that I even know the word Shakespearean is quite miraculous.) I have to admit that he's had a profound influence over my life and the lives of a great many of us.

Can you imagine a world where there were no Romeo and Juliet type plays, books, or movies? Of course, there are a great deal more of his works that influence our lives today. What I am trying to get at is that 398 years after Shakespeare died he is still a huge part of our technologically advanced society. He's still relevant. Man, I'm not sure how relevant my life is now, let alone 398 years from now. Will anything I do matter in a year, or 20 years or 400 years from now?

So, my hat's off to William Shakespeare for continuing to be relevant in a world vastly different from his own. Happy birthday ole chap, somehow I think you'll still be relevant 500 years from now!  

Friday, April 11, 2014

Mental Spring Cleaning

So, I know it's been a couple of weeks since my last update. I sorta got stuck in my own head. I'd been feeling really weighed down by negative thinking. So, I retreated into myself and too stock of where my head was at. 

What I found was that March was a month of changes. I stopped drinking coffee, started eating healthy with the Isagenix program and I started blogging again. I kept myself so busy that what I really want got tangled up with a bunch of other things. 

It's taken me a couple of weeks to work through all of this. I did some mental spring cleaning and figured out what really matters to me versus what I do out of obligation. Once I sorted through the clutter I could clearly see where I want to go from here. 

Through this process I missed a couple of weeks of church and last week I felt like I had to go. I'm so glad that I did. The sermon spoke right to my heart. I totally cried. I talked with a number of friends and a couple of them prayed with me. I left feeling a lot lighter. I forget how cathartic tears can be. 

I think today's been the first really mentally clear day that I've had in a few weeks. I'm so thankful to have the support system that I do have. 

In other news, today marks my 37th day on Isagenix. To date I've lost 22.5 lbs and 12 inches. My clothes are now way too big for me which is both awesome and super annoying. I've got to look into getting some in between clothes. 

I'm excited about the future again. I can't wait until I'm ready to share my dream with the world! 

Have a fantastic weekend! 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Random Thoughts

What a long day. As you may have read in my last post; I had a challenging weekend. I thought I'd worked through most of what I needed to, but today I was hit with a "new" challenge. It's really the same one I've been struggling with for months, but usually something sets me off. Some mishap or maybe even hormones. Alas, there was none of that today. I was completely overcome by a desire to walk out, which of course I couldn't do, so the result was a crying jag in the bathroom. I was able to compose myself until I got home and cried some more until I composed myself and made dinner. My foul mood persisted through most of the evening, but it made me start researching my mystery project again. If I hadn't been feeling so down I may not have found what I've been looking for! My mystery project is within my grasp and at an affordable rate. 

Friday will mark Day 30 on Isagenix and, might I add, my 30th day without coffee. It's still amazing to me that I've gone so long without coffee. I've had my moments where I really wanted to just have a nice hot cup of java, but I resisted. I still have some work to do when it comes to potlucks and big family dinners. I also realized that I haven't been turning to food for comfort. I really wanted to today, but I was completely aware that my foul mood was making me want to eat. Writing and talking are my biggest outlets for my emotions. Instead of turning to food I turn to my phone and reach out to those closest to me. When at home, I find it helps to write a blog post or do research on my mystery project. All of these are helping me get over the really bad food habits I've developed over the years. 

Well, I'm off to bed. I've been trying to get to bed at a decent time the last couple of nights. Getting enough sleep is a part of a healthy and balanced lifestyle! *insert eye roll here* But it's true. I need my beauty sleep. 

I'm going to bed feeling a lot better than when I woke up. I call that progress! 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Very Jekyll and Hyde Weekend

I feel as though I'm at a crossroads of sorts. I went to an Isagenix training Friday night. It was great and it was tough. I was faced with some realities and I think my scaredy lion came roaring back. I feel like tucking my tail between my legs and giving up. You see the speaker at this event is an Isagenix millionaire. Would I like to be a millionaire? Sure. But that's not what I dream about. I dream about being a successful woman. I dream about being a leader in my community. I dream about helping people with my God given talents. And those talents ARE given to me by God. So, what I realized within the first few minutes was that this speaker is all of that. She is a woman. I, however, feel as though I am a mere girl, playing dress up. As the speaker shared her story I pulled so many similarities from my own life. What ultimately blew me away was that we are the same age and this hit me harder than I would have expected.

You see, I've made it to a point in my life that I can honestly say that I love myself. I deserve love and happiness. I am worthy. What has blindsided me is that those feelings of unworthiness have crept back in. Only this time it's related to success and business. I feel unworthy of being successful. There. I said it. All of my doubts and fears are weighing me down. I'm stuck in this in-between place where I know I have these skills. I know I could be really good at it. But I've got all of these doubts. I couldn't run my own business. Why would a client pay me to help them? I'll never make it.

I wrote the above last night. Since then I've had my biggest fan give me one of his speeches. My husband is my biggest supporter and he's always on my side. He tells me the truth, not just what I want to hear. One of the things that I didn't want to hear was that I have too many things on my plate. I know it's true. I just don't want to hear it. I've got too many things on the go and I don't want to drop any of them because I don’t want to disappoint anyone or let anyone down. Here's the thing about juggling too many balls at once a lot of balls get dropped. Because I have too many items on my agenda I'm not able to put in the effort I would like and a lot of things get put off or even forgotten about because something else came up that was a priority. With all of this in mind I came to three decisions. I decided to let one thing go immediately. The second one I will start the stepping back process until I can completely bow out at least at this stage in my life. The last one is to focus more on my health and well-being, which ultimately is the whole idea of letting go of some items on my agenda.

Once I made my decisions I did some spring cleaning to help with my newly decluttered mind. I went through my very cluttered inbox that held over 1200 emails and brought that number down to 59. In the process I rediscovered the Harlem Globe Trotter tickets that I received as a Christmas gift. The event is next Sunday! Can you imagine if I hadn't gone back through my email in time?

Then I moved into the kitchen and organized it as well. You see, we were given a pantry a few days ago and I still hadn't cleaned it out. It's clean now. My spices and baking supplies have filled the pantry! And now I have so much cupboard space!

It's amazing how quickly your viewpoint can open up once you make a decision. What holds me back is the indecision. Indecision leads me to overwhelm and procrastination. What this looks like on the outside is a lot of tv watching and laziness.

I am a woman of many interests and I try to take them all on at once - like any good "superwoman". That is until I gravity pulls me crashing back down to the real world. I can't do it all. I can't learn everything at once. I can't volunteer for everything little thing that interests me.

This weekend was a good bump in the road. It helped me around some hurdles that were blocking me path. I can see clearly again and I am at peace. Or at least my current version of peace. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Updated Workspace Continued

 A couple of weeks ago I went to a lot of trouble to update my work-space and within a few days I received this big beautiful desk. It's taken me some time to finally get to cleaning up my new area, but I finally did. My space was in dire need of organization. It never ceases to amaze me how decluttering a physical space helps declutter your mind space.

So, here you go. My before and after pictures. I've got so much space to work with now! Maybe I'll actually get to do some real work this weekend.



Tuesday, March 25, 2014

21 Days to a New Habit

Don't worry I haven't forgotten about my writing every day challenge. Over the weekend, I realized that I have 28 posts in 22 days. So, I took a break. I've accomplished what I set to do - to reestablish myself as a blogger and to refresh my love of writing. 

Here we are on March 26th and I'm feeling more like myself again. I'm even excited about starting a new phase of Being Elle through video blogging. I'm working out a few more kinks and then I was thinking I'd post a video once a week. 

My first vlog went over really well. I'm so thankful to all of you for your positive comments and encouragement. I really appreciate it. 

So, today is day 21 on Isagenix. They say it takes 21 days to make a habit. I've lost 16 lbs so far and I feel amazing! Okay, a little tired today, but the last two nights I've stayed up beyond late. So, It's a product of my own making. I find everything is just a little bit different. I have more energy. I find I don't yell at the kids nearly as much. Food tastes different. My next video post I will talk about some of those differences. I watch 98% less televison than before. Some of the not so fun parts of my day are a little easier to handle. (Stil not enjoying it though.) All of this and it's only been 21 days. Can you imagine what I'll feel like in 3 months? 6 months? A year? 

The world feels full of possibilities. And I've really gotta get more sleep. I look forward to sharing my journey with you. Maybe some of you will even join me! 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A Day in the Life of Being Elle - IsaGenix Style

Good morning and happy Saturday to you! I hope you enjoy some rest and relaxation today. Here's a glimpse of what we woke up to in Ottawa today.
Nothing says spring quite like a snow storm!
I had grand plans to do another video post today, but it'll have to wait until I've got a tripod for my camera.

After yesterday's post I realized that I rambled on and on about this program called Isagenix, but I didn't really go into the details. So, I thought I'd do a day in the life of my Isagenix plan through pictures.

Isagenix Corner
Welcome to Being Elle's Isagenix Corner. It's my little corner of health and wellness. I keep all of my products together for easy access. The extras I store in a cupboard.

So, let's take a tour of my day with Isagenix.

When I wake up I usually have a cup of water and find my way to the kitchen. I start off with 1 oz of Ionix Supreme and yes, I do take it from a shot glass. Why not make it fun?

Ionix Supreme is a nutrient-rich herbal tonic infused with natural vitamins, minerals and plant-based Adaptogens. 

Then I make my breakfast shake. I use my shaker cup to measure the water and I add a few ice cubes as well. I pour the water and ice into the blender, add two scoops of the IsaLean Shake, and blend for about 30 seconds.

IsaLean Shakes are a complete, 240-calorie meal replacement that perfectly blends 24 grams of no compromise undenatured protein, low-glycemic carbs and healthy fats to reduce your caloric intake without depriving your body of much needed nutrition. 
IsaLean Shakes are clinically shown to: 
  • Burn fat and support lean muscle 
  • Reduce cravings and keep you full longer 
  • Increase energy and recovery 
  • Soy-free with active enzymes to aid digestion 
  • Less than $3 per meal, no artificial colors or flavors

I also take one Natural Accelerator capsule with my breakfast and one with my afternoon snack.

Support your body’s ability to efficiently metabolize fat with Natural Accelerator. Natural thermogenic ingredients such as cayenne, green tea, cinnamon and ginseng have been shown to possess fat-burning qualities, which can kindle metabolism and support weight loss. 

  • Excellent for Cleanse Days 
  • Helps reduce appetite 
  • Helps boost metabolism and burn fat 
  • Stimulant free and will not cause the jitters
I enjoy two shakes a day. One for breakfast and one for lunch.

Now, you may be wondering about snacks. Well, I have a morning snack and an afternoon snack. The snacks don't look like much but they really do work.

Isagenix Snacks are the perfect balance of taste and nutrition. Contain a perfect balance of nutrients to help naturally curb your appetite to keep your weight loss goals on track. These wafers are the perfect balance of taste and nutrition to help take the edge off of hunger. 

  • Great for Cleanse Days or any day of the week 
  • Naturally curbs appetite 
  • Maximizes weight loss 
  • Dairy-free option also available

The IsaDelights are the most amazing part of this whole system. These chocolates have saved me through this journey. I don't feel deprived because I still get to eat chocolate. Currently I've got the dark chocolate, but next time I'm going with the milk chocolate. I've tried both and while I'm a huge dark chocolate fan I'm finding I like the milk chocolate IsaDelights a little more.

IsaDelight Plus are a delicious, guilt-free chocolate that satisfies hunger and sugar cravings. Milk or Dark Chocolate. Your Choice. When your brain is low on “feel-good” chemicals, it seeks out sugar, junk food and caffeine to artificially boost your energy and mood levels. IsaDelight Plus is specially formulated with green tea extract, amino acids, antioxidants, B vitamins and minerals to help ease those cravings. The creamy Milk Chocolate and delicious Dark Chocolate squares also boost your energy, mood and fire up your fat-burning potential. 

  • Curbs cravings on Cleanse Days or any day 
  • Low in sugar, equal to 1/8 of an apple 
  • Helps burn fat 
  • Only 60 calories per treat

So, there you have it. A day in the life of me. Dinner is whatever I make, but I try my best to stick within the Isagenix recommendations. I make sure to load up on the veggies at dinner and I don't snack in the evening at all. I drink a lot of water throughout the day and a lot of herbal tea. In fact, herbal tea has become my new obsession. It's been a journey just to find the right herbal tea but I think I finally have. Through the process though I've amassed a lot of tea. Maybe I need to have a tea party!

My favorites are the Peach Mango White and the Chocolate Orange

Friday, March 21, 2014

Vlog: An Overview of my Introduction to Isagenix

So, here it is. My first official vlog. (Okay, it might be the second attempt.) I decided that I would start posting videos about my Isagenix journey. Sometimes it's easier to talk about than to write about. Although in this case maybe I should have written about it. At least I could have edited my words a little better. This is naturel...No editing. No retakes. It's 6 minutes and 12 seconds long. If you can sit still long enough to watch me embarrass myself.

If you can't get the video to work go to this link:

Okay. Okay. Go ahead and laugh. It's really awkward watching yourself talk. Ah my favorite embarrassing moments to mention are when I say "Jump in with both feet head first" and then while talking about energy I actually say "I'm full of it".
Yeah, I'm full of something alright. I think I advertised Blackberry quite nicely even though it wasn't intentional. It's just my biggest cup these days.
All in all. I feel really awkward, but I'm gonna post this anyway. Why not jump in with both feet head first?  

March 21: Refresh (Chapter Eleven)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Don’t think balance will happen overnight—or even over an eleven-day challenge. It takes practice, and practice takes time. Spend a few minutes reviewing what you’ve learned throughout this challenge and what you hope to continue implementing in your life. Then blog about how you can keep persevering and working toward balance after the challenge has ended. Share encouragement for those who might feel they’ve failed at balance.

As I'm sure you've discovered the dream of a completely balance life does not exist. Life is a series of constant changes. Some days you'll feel like you've achieved balance only to have disaster strike the next day. You're not alone. Dare I say, you're even normal.

Over the past eleven days I've had my ups and downs. I had days that I could write and write and other days I wondered why I signed up for this challenge. In the end, I am glad that I've taken the time to do each challenge. I've learned a lot and I hope I maintain most of that knowledge. I thought I'd finish up with a brief overview of my Balanced Challenge.

Day 1
Make your family a priority. Take a look at what is most important to you as a family. What do you want to accomplish as a family? Where do you see yourself in five or ten years? For my family, I hope that we be close as the kids grow older.

Day 2
Find ways to make working at home work for you. Create your own space to work in. Make it comfortable, inspiring and functional.

Day 3
How can you get your kids involved in what you do? Get inspiration from your children or ask them for ideas. Explain what it is you're doing.

Day 4
Believe God. God made you uniquely you. He gave you gifts that no one else has. Believe that God gave you these gifts for a reason and use them for His glory.

Day 5
Create a schedule by ranking your priorities. What is truly important? What has to be done? What are you doing just because you think other's expect you to?

Day 6
Do what you can. Use those small windows of time to be productive. Sweep the floor, fold a load of laundry, fill the sink with soapy water for the dishes to soak.

Day 7
Seek Support. It's okay to ask for help. It's even okay to hire help where needed. The upkeep for a family is a lot of work and doesn't need to fall on the shoulders of one person.

Day 8
Make your day amazing! Give thanks to God for your blessings. Sing His praises. Take the time to appreciate each member of your family for being unique. I had a mini dance party with my 6.5 year old daughter.

Day 9
Find inspiration and rest. There is F.R.E.E.D.O.M. in following your dreams. I am finding peace and joy in researching my dream!

Day 10
Eight. What are your eight life themes? What matters most to you? Music. Family. People. God. Friendship. Play. Laugh. Appreciate.

Day 11
Know that there will be ups and downs. True balance comes within. Let go of the things that really don't matter in the long run. Remember to go to God first instead of as a last resort. Spend quality time with the people you love and delegate whatever you can. Live in peace even through the chaos of our every changing lives.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

March 20: Eight (Chapter Ten)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Read chapter ten and come up with your list of “eight.” Then write down those eight themes on a pretty piece of paper and post it somewhere you’ll see it often (bathroom mirror, refrigerator, bulletin board, etc.). Then take a picture of it and post it on your blog.

Music, singing, worship. It's how God reached me and music is what kept me coming back. I was not blessed with a beautiful voice, but I love to sing. So I do. All the time and I think it brings joy to the Lord.

Family is what you make it. There are those you're born to, those you are drawn to and those you draw to you.

People matter. Get to know the people in your community, whether that's at work, at church or in your neighborhood.

Serving a higher purpose. There's nothing more rewarding than knowing you've positively affected someone else's life.

Friendship is a gift. Treasure your friendships. Nurture your relationships so they can blossom and grow as you change throughout life.

Take time to play. You're never to old to have fun. Always be young at heart. Life is short.

Laugh at yourself. Laughter is the best medicine. Have you ever done something ridiculous or really embarrassing? The quicker you can laugh at yourself the better you'll feel. Don't waste time scolding yourself - it'll only bring you down.

Be thankful. For all the little things. Those are what you miss the most when they're gone.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

March 19: Inspiration and Relaxation (Chapter Nine)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Give your mind a rest and a dose of good, old-fashioned inspiration. Carve out some time today to implement one of my tips about finding inspiration and enjoy the feeling of creativity. Then come up with your own list of ways you can find inspiration and share those on your blog.

Find time to spend with God. This is an area I continually struggle with. I find I have been talking to God more lately and that's progress from where I was a couple of months ago. I definitely need want to carve out time in my day and dedicate it to quality time with God.

Research the area you want to pursue. I've started doing this. I keep collecting information. I've amassed so much that I need to find time to sort through it and keep what's good and get rid of the rest.

Expect to make adjustments to your schedule. I'm married, have three kids and work full time...I definitely expect to make adjustments to my schedule, especially since I want to start my own business. Research and planning is all done in my spare time.

Enjoy the process of striving toward your dream. I admit that this is an easy one. When I do get some solid time to work on my dream I find it completely uplifting. I do get a little frustrated when I don't get as much time to work on things as I'd like. I need to go back a step and expect to make adjustments.

Develop relationships with others who share the same talents and goals. Relationships come naturally to me, although I do find it difficult to purposely network in real life. Online is so much easier and yes I suppose safer as well. No doesn't hurt as much while online. Although I have also met some amazing people online who share similar talents and goals.

Openly communicate your dreams to your family, and ask them to share theirs. I try to be as much of an open book as I can be. There have been times when I've had ideas and friends or family have shot those ideas down. Yes, maybe some really were ridiculous. Some of my dreams however could have been worth following. Would they have taken a lot of work? Absolutely. Is there risk in following your dreams? Yes, of course. Can I accomplish my dreams? I can, if it's part of God's plan.

Make daily appointments with God to ensure you are on the right track. I often forget to consult with God and when I do everything seems to go askew. I wanted to come up with the right business name. I couldn't move forward until I had the right name. I made several attempts. A few times I thought I had it right. And then I got God involved and suddenly a couple of words popped out at me and I was able to put something together. I'm still not 100% sure about it as the name, but I know the words I found are going to be the foundation of my business. I know it will be a solid foundation.

How do I find inspiration? 

I find inspiration in my day to day life, in the people I meet and the things that happen from one day to the next. Music helps a lot too. Listening to loud music and singing along is my happy place. When I do come up with ideas I have a friend that I run to for advice on whether it's good, bad, just plain crazy. The best part is no matter how ridiculous my ideas are she's always honest and encouraging.

As a side note I also tend to get my best ideas while in the shower or while washing the dishes. I'm not 100% sure why that is. I assume it's because I don't need to think about the task at hand and I can let my mind wander. All I know for sure is it works.

I'd love to hear about ways that you find inspiration!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

March 18: Make Today Amazing (Chapter Eight)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Take one of my tips to make today amazing (toward the end of the chapter in Balanced) and implement it today. Did you notice a difference in your attitude? What changed? Blog about it!

Oh, Tricia continues to stretch my limits with the Balanced Challenge. I'm expecting that monthly visitor and it's been quite difficult with today's challenge. Here are the highlights:
  • I sang Psalm 51 while in the shower. I actually sang it off and on throughout the day. It's such a blessing to have a song of God in my heart!
  • I had a nap in my car. Yes, this was a highlight. It was quiet, peaceful, and warm (heated seats).
  • I took a few minutes to listen to Furious by Jeremy Riddle (Bethel Church). Okay I played a couple of versions and replayed them a couple of times. God loves us furiously!  
  • I took a few minutes to lay on the couch with my head on my husband's lap.
  • I hugged each of my children and told them I love them
  • My kids put away their clothes and the boys did the dishes!
  • My daughter and I had a mini dance party
The mini dance party is really what made my day truly awesome! May I suggest your own mini dance party?
Here's what I was singing in the shower this morning:
Have Mercy on Me, O God
Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
and cleanse me from my sin
You cleanse me from my sin
Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy,
the joy of your salvation.
O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise
O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will declare your praise

Monday, March 17, 2014

March 17: Teamwork (Chapter Seven)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Many hands make light work—and moms, you shouldn’t feel the need to do everything yourself. Schedule a quick family meeting today to talk to your kids and spouse about the responsibilities you all can share to make your load a bit lighter. Blog about what task was given to whom.

Well, it's our wedding anniversary today so our schedule this evening was totally off. I drove home from work to pick up the kids and my husband. We dropped the kids off at the in-laws and went for a lovely dinner at East Side Mario's.

By the time we got home it was after 8 so I got my six year old daughter to bed. The boys, however, I asked them to clean the kitchen. Of course, I got the usual hesitations.

So, I took some time to talk to them about how we are all a part of this family. We're a family of five living in a nice home. If each one of us helps out around the house it benefits all of us. We keep trying to give them a specific "chore" but this doesn't always work out so well. Instead, we're just all going to help with what is needed.

Tonight, what was needed, was the kitchen to be tidied up. The boys did a great job of doing the dishes and making sure the kitchen was presentable. I'm sure tomorrow morning will go more smoothly having a clean kitchen!

Good night and God Bless!



Today is my wedding anniversary! I'm so blessed to have a husband who loves me beyond measure and treats me like a princess. I married my best friend and soul mate this day 8 years ago.

Happy Anniversary to the Most Amazing Husband!
I love you always and forever!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Isa Update - Day 11

Good afternoon! What an amazing day. It's a beautiful and chilly day outside. For those of you keeping track. Today is Day 11 on the Isagenix program. It's also my 11th day without coffee! Day 11 is the first official weigh and measure day since starting the program.

I've lost 12.5 lbs and 8 inches!

I am so happy! This has been such a great journey so far and it's only been 11 days! I have so much energy. My positivity is at an all time high. And let's face it. It feels so good to say I've lost 12.5 lbs!

Friday I did my first cleanse day. It was quite challenging. I did okay for most of the day. The real challenge was feeling hungry through the evening. Thankfully, a friend called and I went to visit her which helped occupy my mind.

Saturday I learned something that totally amazes me. I had my usual shake for breakfast, a.m. snack, shake for lunch, p.m. snack and then I went to my small group for a potluck dinner. Here's what I've learned from this experience. Number 1...don't plan a cleanse day before a potluck (maybe cleanse days should be the day after a potluck). Number 2...eating a little of everything would have been enough. I guess the combination of feeling deprived for a day and a lot of really good food was just too much temptation. Number 3...being overfull changed my entire mood. I wasn't bouncy anymore. I was left feeling lethargic and ho-hum. Thankfully, today I am right back on top of things and feeling amazing. But seeing how my whole being was totally off after such a big meal really opened my eyes to what I've been doing to myself all these years. That is what amazes me. That I could see the difference so quickly and so thoroughly.

I'm off to enjoy my shake for lunch and run some errands before I get to making a beautiful dinner for my family and a guest tonight. So, have a great day! I'll see y'all tomorrow!

And for you parents out there...March Break is OVER! Yes! WOOT! Kids are back to school tomorrow! I don't know about you, but my kids NEED to get back into their normal routine.

Happy End of March Break!

March 16: Do What You Can (Chapter Six)

This post is part of the Balanced challenge with Tricia Goyer—and you can join, too!

Do you have an extra fifteen minutes before you need to hop in the car to pick up your kids? Make the most of them! Do a little laundry, organize a stack of papers, do a quick sweep of the kitchen. Those five, ten, and fifteen minutes add up throughout the day! Take advantage of them today and write about your experience and all you got done in today’s blog post.

Well, today is Sunday so it's already a little less harried than a regular week day. I woke earlier than I usually would and decided to stay up instead of going back to bed for an hour since I did get enough sleep. Today was weigh and measure day for the Isagenix program that I'm following. So, I did that first thing. Then I organized the mess in the kitchen so at least the dishes are soaking and the kitchen looks clean. By this time the kids woke and I set them up with some cartoons. I have a friend coming for dinner tonight so I've taken the meat out of the freezer. Brought up the clean laundry and started the washer to rewash the forgotten load that was in there. Now I'm back to organizing my workspace again. We got a new desk and I now have a real space to work at. I managed to get some of it done, but I still have some stuff to go through.

And now we're off to church. Have a blessed day!