Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Its All About Babysteps

I feel like I'm on my way. These days, my life has been all about baby steps- the minute little choices we have to make each and every time a temptation comes our way. Some days, I cave. Most days, however, I am able to remain faithful to the course I've set on.

I've had a crappy day. Nothing went particularly wrong. It was busy. It was boring. And I'm tired. Being bored, stressed, and tired are probably the biggest triggers to Mocha-drinking in my life. Before I'd been at work an hour, I was already thinking about when I could get to Starbucks... and it had to be Starbucks because I actually like their iced coffee (with a pump of Toffee Nut) without milk or cream. Then I was ready to shoot on over to Borders to get an iced caramel latte and a snickerdoodle. Talk about DAIRY!

Amazing, I came back full circle again and asked myself this question: Am I committed to this life? Am I committed to remaining vegan for my health and for the planet. Am. I. Serious?

The short answer (at least for this that I asked myself the question) is yes.

So I started plotting my trip to Starbucks again. Thankfully, listening to a few Rawkin Radio podcasts, I gave up on the idea of coffee and decided to bless myself with a green juice instead.

Wonder of wonders! I feel so much better! My mood has improved (although that may be due to the fact that I get off in 5 minutes). I have more energy. Imagine that!

Baby. Steps. Make conscious decisions instead of eating mindlessly. One day, one choice, one moment at a time.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Back on the Wagon

Tomorrow. Hardcore.

Just made some vegan applesauce muffins. Water is on for the pasta dishes I should be eating this week. I'm also cooking lentils for a hearty stew that will also carry me through the week (fingers crossed). Registering at the university gym tomorrow. Yoga with Zelda on Tuesday. And water... lots and lots of water.

I am very happy to report that during a clandestine trip to Costco yesterday, I was fortunate enough to find Jose's coffee selling all their specialties. I picked up 2lbs each of decaf butternut toffee coffee and regular. Mixed them together. Now I can have MORE! Yay!

DH and I have been doing a lot better lately. Its been rocky, but we're actually talking, COMMUNICATING about it, I'm pleased to say.

Missing Colorado... a lot. Missing the beautify of a river flowing between two mountains... rocky riverbeds, green trees, COLD weather... wildlife everywhere. The colors just look different out there. I'm not a beach person, so living in California is kind of disappointing.

Have to get back to it...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Caffeine Update

No surprise here, but I did NOT make the entire 21 days without caffeine. About seven days into it, I finally came to the conclusion that I didn't need to be totally caffeine-free, but I did need to lose my dependence on 3-4 cups of coffee a day. I needed to lose the idea that I couldn't wake up or read my Bible or make it to my break at work without my mind completely wandering off. And so each and every time I want some caffeine, I make a conscience choice to have it or not to have it. Usually, I choose not to. I try very had to make the choice not to have it if I feel that I actually need it.

Hopefully that makes sense...

I totally want to write more... feeling very reflective as today is my "angel baby's" 5th heavenly birthday. However, DH wants to watch a movie and I've got to try and stay away to watch "Battlestar"...

Monday, January 12, 2009

"I Don't Know Where I Stand"

This song often comes to mind when I think of my old friend. Its ironic that I thought of this song this evening when it is so "appro-po":

"Funny day, looking for laughter and finding it there
Sunny day, braiding wild flowers and leaves in my hair
Picked up a pencil and wrote I love you in my finest hand
Wanted to send it, but I don't know where I stand

Telephone, even the sound of your voice is still new
All alone in California and talking to you
And feeling too foolish and strange to say the words that I had planned
I guess its too early, cause I don't know where I stand

Crickets call, courting their ladies in star-dappled green
Thickets tall, until the morning comes up like a dream
All muted and misty, so drowsy now I'll take what sleep I can
I know that I miss you, but I don't know where I stand
I know that I miss you, but I don't know where I stand"

-Joni Mitchell

This song was the theme for our entire relationship. And it still is! Hilarious!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

More Appreciations

1. Today, I am grateful for Facebook. This amazing site enabled me to bring closer to a very important relationship in my life, one that ended 11 years ago, but has still sort of haunted me. I requested to be this person's Facebook friend and he chose to ignore my request. I can still message, so I sent him this:

Dear S. ,

Well, it seems as though you've chosen to ignore my friend request, although I have no idea why. No worries. Just wanted to catch up after all this time. If I had known that the last time I saw you 11 years ago would be the last time I'd ever see you or talk to you I'd have said something like this: I hope you are happy and blessed. Thank you for the impact you made on me. Our friendship was one of the foundational relationships in young adult life. I still think of you every time I hear a Joni Mitchell song. I so appreciate the unique way that you look at life- the beauty you find in the simplest things or the musicality of someone's voice. You are a gift.

Okay, enough of the cheese, however sincerely meant. Good luck to you, my dear friend.

Its just what I wanted to say. Is that part of my life, that still-open wound, that "what-if", closed? Yes. Is he gone for good from my thoughts? Do you ever forget your first love? No. But you can change the way you think about him- you can look back and smile with fondness instead of wondering "what-if". I'm happy with my life and with my husband. Wouldn't change a thing.

2. Ken Samples- Sunday school teacher extraordinaire.

3. My MIL's Pot Roast. Yes, I know I'm vegan, but Sunday is my cheat day if I do feel like cheating.

4. My daughter's hair is finally getting long enough to put into pigtails.

5. Sundays in general... they are usually good nap days and GREAT days of worship of our Lord.

6. Self-control. I don't have much of it, but somehow I did manage to not pick a fight with anyone today (and I so wanted to).

7. Mark's grandpa and his constant, cheerful demeanor.

8. My son prays for our meals every night. And he loves doing it.

9. Books. I think I put this in my last appreciation, but its good to say it again.

10. Sleep. I plan on getting a lot of it tonight.

UPDATE: Five minutes after I hit "send" on that email, I got a response. I just wanted to make sure that I hadn't been forgotten. A part of me, rightly or wrongly, still seems to need validation from this relationship that has been totally over for 11 years now. Got a little teary when I read this:

I've had a couple of experiences this week in berlin that made me think of you. i'm lucky that you look back on our experiences together so positively. I sometimes wonder, judging my teenage self.

I confess, I got a little teary. I was a teenager all over again.

Back to the real world, where I live and LOVE and am present, committed, and persevering.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Daily Appreciation

1. A constant place to live. Can't even imagine being homeless, let alone homeless with my husband and children.

2. Family nearby. They are all a tremendous blessing- our backbone.

3. My husband- I am his biggest fan. What an amazing man. Hard worker, faithful lover, constant friend.

4. My children- What joys! So often, I feel like a plain crappy parent. And then Alex runs to get Sophia her own cup of water because she's constantly asking me for a sip out of mine. No one asked him, but out of his own tender heart, he helped her.

5. Good health- more about that coming up.

6. A church home. I can't imagine handling the stress of life without this foundation.

7. The misty cool air of this morning. Makes winter hang on a little longer.

8. The fact that I can listen to music while I work. I'd die of boredom otherwise. Not that my job is boring... but my mind tends to wander and music, ironically, helps me focus.

9. Books. I love books. I love the smell of books, what's in books, buying books, having long lists of books to read. Why I EVER watch TV is beyond me.

10. Battlestar Galactica. Lame appreciation I know, but its there nonetheless. I love having things to look forward too. BSG's final 10 episodes start airing a week from today. I still think Gaeta is the final Cylon, but who the heck knows. Mark thinks its Hera. I love how this brings us together LOL!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Welcomed Discovery

Today is Day 7 of my caffeine-free, vegan journey and Day 1 of a new, no-sugar diet as well. I tried a little experiment this morning. I consciously chose to have a cup of my "Half-Caff" Trader Joe's coffee, just to test its effects. I didn't feel like a slave to the caffeine. I just wanted a cup or real coffee and chose to have one.

An hour after first consumption, my stomach was on fire! I felt like I'd had two or three cups of full-caff. An hour and a half later, I was high as a kite. My eyes were bugging out of my head. I talked up a storm and couldn't stop. I was wide awake and cheerful. Three hours later, I crashed and am fatigued yet again.

All that from under 1 cup of half-caff coffee.

I don't think this will be a difficult journey anymore, at least not where coffee is concerned. Tea is a bit tougher because the caffeine content is half that of coffee and its not as acidic so you don't feel the effects in your gut like you do with coffee. I love a good cup of Irish Breakfast with a teeny bit of sugar and a splash of milk, neither of which I can have right now. So I'm still stuck with no-s0-great tea. I know there's good stuff out there... I just have to find it.

This discovery about coffee is very welcomed. I don't need it- physically, psychologically... emotionally, I'm not sure, but I'll get over it. Coffee is such a social drink and we are big drinkers in my family. Not sure how I can get through a holiday without my Jose's vanilla with a splash of cream... but I'll figure it out.

Have to get back to work. More later.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Don't feel like blogging today, even though today was "Day 1" of my cleanse. I'm a completely sick and even though I don't have a fever, I feel worse than I have in quite a long time. This is my second cold in the last month and it bites! I had the day off from work today and I took one 3 hr nap and one 1.5 hr nap. Totally neglected my kids due mostly to the fact that my being sick has put me in a completely bad mood. My hearing seems to be totally magnified. Everything seems unbelievably loud!

I successfully abstained from caffeine and dairy today. Not going to stay away from the gluten. That's just too much at this point. However, I did have a teeny bit of sugar as I snacked on a little trail mix while dropping off the rent at my landlord's home. Craving sugar. Craving Irish Breakfast tea with milk and a little sugar. Two headaches today. Need more sleep.

Have fallen in love with the "John Adams" miniseries. Not surprising. I started reading the book in force last night after watching the first two eps. Excellent production. Incredible acting. Leaves me wanting more, which is always a good sign.

Okay, I'm going to bed. I do have to work tomorrow, so I can't stay up late tonight... not that I want to...