Up & Down

Life goes up and life goes down, for all of us.  You know, those days that everything is amazing and then the other days that it is hard to open your eyes.  We all have this happen at one time or the other.

Currently I am trying to understand how to keep the smile on my face when inside it is all torn up.  The worst part is that life is okay.  Nothing is wrong.  But the chemical imbalance does effect the way I think, view things and react.  This part of chronic depression is not only physically exhausting, it is also mentally havoc.  When you can not think clearly then it is even harder to understand what is really going on around you and not let your emotions come into play.

I only know that my emotions are running around like lil electrical shocks.  Hitting me here and there, not really knowing where I will feel it next.  But knowing that no matter all the good around me (and there is plenty of it) that shock is going to take me back another step.  Before you know it, your whole system is on edge and thinking clearly is out the window.

I know I am ranting here.  Forgive me, but at the same time this is my place.  And if I can not sound out here then where is safe.  No nothing is wrong at all.  Just my chemical imbalance having fun with me.  I give up....tomorrow I am seeing my Doctor to check out some medication changes.

Up and Moving

Well it is time for Walk Across Texas once again.  It is a program to help people get up and get active once again.  Every year this is sponsored by AgriLife Extension.  There are teams of eight that try to walk a total of 840 miles in eight weeks.

The first year I did this all alone and did the whole 840 miles.  Last year I captained a team that placed fourth in our county.  This year our same team, "Take A Hike", is hoping to make it up to first place.  The first week just passed and we have made our goal to start off.  That helps us be more determined to move, move, move.

Also I put on a few pounds in the last year.  Hopefully I can take some of it off during this time too.  This last week I managed to take off three of those extra pounds.  So this too makes me feel happy and hopeful.  Now just to keep this up!

Anyway I just wanted to share what we are doing to get up and moving.  If you want to join in you can.  Just get up and go.  You can track your miles at MapMyWalk.com and log on to WalkAcrossTexas.tamu.edu if you wish to compete with us.

Contention

Oh how I hate to tell myself how wrong I am.  Don't you?  I mean when we see that we screwed up and let ourselves get out of line.  Then we have to admit that we screwed up and that we have to fix it.

For me it is that I have become selfish in my heart, letting pride get in the way of a joyful heart.  The Lord loves an obedient servant and that many times our obedience has to rest upon faith.  And tonight I have wrestled with sleep trying to see just this.  That obedience is not always easy but it is essential to keeping those promises you make to the Lord.


If we let pride stop us from doing what is right, we can miss some of life’s greatest joys.  And isn't that just what selfishness is....pride?  Pride that "I" can do it better, "I" am able to accomplish more, "I" all "I"!  When you think only of yourself then you find that you are no longer joyful but most often sad, lonely and hurt.  In that place is where I found that I had done this to myself.  

Now let me clear it up in a way.  Yes, people around me did things that made me have to scramble quickly to help out.  It did create some anxiety in me.  But instead of me becoming full of my own self, I should have looked at the blessing of helping someone else. Feeding on selfishness corrodes our self-image and our peace. It destroys relationships.

It says in the Old Testament, "Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom." Proverbs 13:10  Yes, wisdom is just what I need.  To be wise enough to see that I have been asked to be a servant for someone else for a short time.  And in doing so it made their task easier to carry.  For I am not a servant to them like a slave, but instead as a friend.  Friends help each other carry the load.  Sometimes by grabbing the other side and at times just hefting it up on their shoulders while the other rest.

I am also reminded that "A fool’s lips enter into contention..." Proverbs 18:6.  Here is that little voice that raises up to complain "Why Me?"  Oh how easy it is to get on that soap box and beat our chest as we fuss about how hard something is.  But gosh, isn't it the other way around.  We should be up on that box hollering out...."Hey, how can I help?"  "What do you need?"  or better yet, "I love you!"  Then we can feel happiness and joy in our deeds instead of bitterness.  

Does this mean to lay down and be a door mat?  No, it means to look at your days and find out how your being used to help others out.  And know that the Lord not only blesses us for that joyful spirit that we reach out in but that he commands us to be there for each other.  

And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.  Matthew 25:40

Search, Ponder & Pray

Been a quiet morning here today.  And a long one too!!!  Woke the first time around 1:30 a.m.  Then again around 3, then 5 and then 7.  So it has been an off and on kinda morning for me.  But each time I felt the need to reflect.  So I wonder what God is trying to tell me that my hazy mind is just not catching on to.

Well I do start a bible study today with some local ladies.  I miss getting to study with others as I am always teaching the children at church.  These women were so kind to invite me and we will be reading from 2 Timothy.  This is where my all time go to verse is located at.  

For God has not given you the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

This is how I hang on to the knowledge I am not 'defective'.   That even though my mind may be chemically imbalanced it is still a sound mind.  That I do have power and that love is what should drive me.  So with that being the focus of today....what am I to be learning?  Think I need to ponder this awhile.  

National Popcorn Day

Did you know today is National Popcorn Day?   I learned that and thought it gave me a great reason to hole up with Netflix and my favorite snack.  Then I thought maybe like popcorn, I should share with you too.  So here you go!  Thanks to Colman's Mustard for sharing this recipe.

Colman's Mustard Spicy Chocolate Popcorn


1 bag buttered popcorn

½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
¼ cup milk
2 tsp. Colman's Mustard
1 tbsp. light Karo Syrup
Pop the popcorn according to package directions. In a small saucepan add the chocolate chips and heat on low. Add the milk and stir constantly until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Add the mustard and the Karo syrup. Mix well. Dump the popcorn into a bowl and pour chocolate mixture over popcorn. Mix well and let it sit till it cools. 

fresh food snob

I am adding this information to help me remember that can food is not bad food. Yes, I am a fresh food snob too often. Forgetting that I have a wealth of healthy options at my fingertips for a quick to the table meal. This post is not paid for nor did I get any "freebies" for it. It is just information that I thought just might get us to remembering all the goodness we have at our fingertips.

Question: Do Americans families who eat canned veggies get more nutrients than those who don't?

Answer: According to the 2016 "Canned Vegetable Nutrients Study" -- a dietary analysis of 24,000 Americans conducted by Dr. Marjorie Freedman (of San Jose State University) in association with the CFA -- the answer is a resounding "yes."

Consider this:
* 94% of American adults are not eating enough fruits and vegetables
* Adults who eat canned produce eat 17% more vegetables and 19% more fruit than those who don't
* Adults who eat canned produce consume 7% more dietary fiber and 5% more potassium than those who don't
* Canned produce includes low-sodium options and non-GMO veggies like Del Monte Blue Lake Cut Green Beans

These nutritional benefits affect our kids, too:
* 9 in 10 kids don't eat enough vegetables and 6 in 10 kids don't eat enough fruit
* Kids who eat canned produce eat 22% more vegetables and 14% more fruit than those who don't
* Kids who eat canned produce consumed more protein, fiber, vitamin A, calcium, and potassium (but less fat)

Experts believe that canned food has this surprising effect not only because canned produce carries nearly identical nutrients to its fresh-cooked counterparts, but they are also a cheaper and easier way to get recommended daily servings of fruits and veggies -- which can lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and certain cancers.

To make healthy eating goals more attainable than ever before, Del Monte has released a new series of "2016 Healthy Eating Hacks":

1. BRING THE FARMER'S MARKET TO YOUR PANTRY
It's always healthy to eat fresh fruits and veggies, but because Del Monte canned produce provides very similar nutrient benefits to fresh-cooked produce, canned fruits and veggies are a much healthier option than, say, take-out pizza when fresh options aren't available in your fridge.

2. SHIFT THE BALANCE
Pair less healthy foods with a side of vegetables and shift ratios on your plate so that the vegetables take up more room than the more indulgent food.

 3. TRICK YOURSELF (OR YOUR KIDS)
To infuse your favorite comfort foods with more vegetables, find hidden ways to make them higher in nutrients and lower in calories -- such as this Del Monte recipe for Sneaky Mac and Cheese (http://bit.ly/Sneaky-Mac-and-Cheese).

Because Del Monte's fruits and vegetables often go from farm to can in 8 hours or less, they can lock in key nutrients and allow Americans to enjoy the benefits of their favorite produce, even when not in season.

Happiness is...

My toes are all wiggly today.  Just fresh out of a bath and it is 75 degrees outside.  Makes me want to twirl around and dance.

from http://thisvintagemoon.tumblr.com/

Do you get that way?  Where you want to forget your age and act the way you feel inside instead?  Of course we can get away with it when we are home all alone but it is not something we often do out in public.  It is in this time that I turn up the music and dance away.  Yes, I am glad no one can see me but the dogs.  But they like to dance too.

from instagram.com/the.official.happiness.is


Keep Calm

Contemporary rendering of a poster from the Un...

I have been pretty quiet here for some time.  Life gets busy and we divert our attention to other things.  Lately I have been focusing on keeping our home going financially and figuratively.  But Dear Hubby is back at work now and maybe I can slow down some.  Taking more care of our home and more care of me too.

I have been missing out on some parts of my life that are important to me.  Mostly daily scripture reading, daily exercise and time to focus on my home.  Hopefully this will all fall back into place for me.  We are trying to do what we can to keep life calm and peaceful for the most part.  That means mostly knowing just how much we can take on at any given time.  Making adjustments as new things are added and old things are removed.  But also knowing not to get stuck in the ruts either.

So here I am once again looking at another year beginning.  What do I want out of this one?  I think I want a lil more organization.  A lot more downsizing.  And to focus on my spirituality.  Let's see how it goes?

Monday Blessings


I can not begin to believe how blessed I am.  Today is one of those perfect days.  Sun shining, birds singing and joy in my heart.

It has started out with my husband on the upside of being ill.  He is not well yet but he is headed that direction and for that I am grateful.  Next my darling daughter and Other Mom arrived to share "coffee" time and breakfast with us.  After a fun round of cards and a lil visit from the young women from the Jehovah Witness church, we dashed to the store for some medication.

Tons of bargains there where we saved as much as we spent and restocked some of our pantry.  Popped out to deliver a hug and purchase to my father-in-law and returned home to a sweet friend delivering goodies to us from her home.  It included some beautiful rugs for my floors, a carousal horse for the front yard and new bedding for our sleeping quarters.  There was also a sweet bottle of lotion in my mail box from our darling mail lady as well as a note of thanks from a women in our church.  Can you count all the blessings?

Now I am sitting on the front porch, soaking up sunshine and having a bite of lunch with my Dear Hubby.  We are having the poor man's equivalent of pate', cheese and crackers.  I know that tonight we are to have dinner with our missionaries and that is always heart lifting.  Add in loving pets to share our day with and it could not be a better blessing.

You know what?  Life is grand!