Category: fitness

You did it! You made it through January! Before we say another word, go ahead and give yourself a high-five.

Can we all agree that January is one of the wonkiest months of the year?

Is that just me?

The holidays are over and for some some of us that means we’re still barely processing the feelings and experiences that came with them, the bank account is still smarting, the goals and intentions for the new year have been set but it’s too soon to tell which ones we’re actually being successful at, the weather is cold and gray, and some years it all just leaves me feeling a little weird.

On the bright side, I do love me a fresh start, and January is the basically freshest start of all. It’s Day 1 of 365. Full of promise and possibility.

Whichever way you slice it, one thing is for sure- we made it through.

Go us!

I’m so proud of us.

Before we roll into February I wanted to write you a letter to fill you in on the highs and lows of our month over here.

Not just the highlight reel, the real reel too.

This is the stuff I share with my closest friends over coffee, but since most of you don’t live within a 30 mile radius of me (which is the exact distance I’ve deemed worthy of traveling for food or drink. *see last post regarding chipotle burritos*) I’ll just leave it here for you to read at your leisure.

These letters are a little longer and more personal in nature. I only write them once a month because I value your time and don’t want to waste it, so I choose to keep the blog more focused on encouragement and entertainment the rest of the time. But hey, maybe some of my regular day-to-day experiences will resonate with you, and maybe that will encourage or entertain you too. Who knows?

So let’s lead with the fun stuff, shall we?

For starters, we brought two more little baby goats home to the farm and I am low-key obsessed with them.

They’re Nigerian Dwarfs so they’ll stay small, only growing to be about the size of our dogs.

They were aptly named Todd & Margo by our 8 year old son, after our favorite line in Christmas Vacation…

“And why is the carpet all wet Todd?

I don’t KNOW Margo!” Read More…

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about blooming.

I know, how deep, right?

Thinking about blooming in the springtime?

Call someone call Oprah! Tell her to get out the overstuffed chairs and place them in the forest! It’s time to sit down and talk about how deep and unique I am for having a revelation basic to the human existence! (Btw, I never planned on referencing Oprah so much in my writing. It just happens sometimes so I’m rolling with it.)

Anyway, blooming- I’ve been thinking a lot about it.

Which is sort of new, because I don’t exactly have a green thumb- In fact, I’ve killed every plant that I’ve ever owned. Every single one. Even the succulents on my front porch, which I assumed were basically indestructible. After 15 years of attempting to have greenery in my home, the plant-killing became too much for my conscience to bear so I finally gave up.

I’ve never even been one to notice flowers, much less learn their names, how to care for them, or appreciate their unique beauty. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m not some kind of cold, cynical monster who landscapes her front yard with exposed aggregate instead of grass, I guess you could say I’ve just never exactly stopped to smell the roses.

Until lately.

Last week flowers made me cry.

They weren’t even flowers that someone picked or bought or presented me with. They were just out in the wild. And by “the wild”, I mean that one island of trees in the middle of the parking lot at my kid’s elementary school; the one that runs the length of the carpool lane.

There were cherry blossom trees in full bloom there, in the middle of all that asphalt, bursting with so many pink petals that they covered the entire surface of the ground below.

It probably feels like I’m about to ramp up here into some metaphor about life springing up out of dead places or something, but that’s actually not where I’m headed. (Although, maybe it should be a post for another day? ??‍♀️Please mark yes or no and put in locker #7.) Read More…

Today I’m writing from beneath the comfort of my favorite new blanket. My friend Megan gave it to me for my birthday and I love it because it is the exact weight that a blanket should be. Just heavy enough to feel cozy but not so heavy that you feel trapped. Lately I keep wrapping up in this blanket and staring out my window while I wonder what to write about.

I think I’m still experiencing a little bit of burnout after writing every single day in the month of October. But I’ve taken a long enough break and now I feel all the words brewing again so I need to just start getting them out (because word-constipation is a real and serious affliction y’all).

As usual, life has been busy and full and hard and hilarious. I’ve written a bit lately about some of the heavier things happening in my heart but luckily for you, today I don’t feel heavy. Today I’m happily wrapped in my good blanket and I’m getting very excited for Christmas morning- mostly because we have a big surprise for the kids this year.

A few days after Christmas we are flying to Hawaii to join our best friends for a week of sun, fun, and hopefully not getting terribly sunburned. This may be asking too much for a family of palies who’s skin is basically the color of blue iced milk, but whatever. As long as there are cocktails with umbrellas I shall soldier on, regardless of what shade of magenta my skin is.

This plan was hatched over a year ago which means that I have kept a secret for an entire year. If you know me at all, you know that this is basically the biggest Christmas Miracle of all. I am not good at faking or lying or keeping exciting tidbits to myself. I’ve almost blown it in front of the kids at least a hundred times. If I can just keep a lid on it for 5 more days it’ll be arguably the biggest accomplishment of my life.

I keep daydreaming about the children’s reaction, envisioning them jumping up and down, squealing, and thanking us profusely while maybe a single tear falls from their unbelieving eyes the moment we tell them, but I should probably reign that in because more than likely they’ll be over-tired or overstimulated after opening presents and their real life reaction may not live up to my theatrical standards.

I’ll let you know how it goes.

There are three more things that bear mentioning here before I crawl out from under my blanket and start doing productive things that require me to move the rest of my body. Read More…

For a long time I completely ignored my desire to write. It lay dormant, buried deep down in my heart where it was safe. It felt too outlandish to acknowledge it. I knew that once I gave it merit, I would then have to make a choice as to whether or not I was actually going to do anything about it. I suppose ignorance really is bliss sometimes, but that only works for so long.

Slowly and surely I’ve felt God drawing this desire up to the surface of my heart until I can no longer ignore it. It’s been uncomfortable, like a needle pulling a thread up and through, piercing my heart as he weaves it more and more into the fabric of who I am. It’s uncomfortable because each tug of the needle is pulling me in a direction that leads right out of my comfort zone.

When I signed on to take this challenge to write for 31 days straight, it scared me to death because it wasn’t just outside of my comfort zone, it was a million miles away from it. I knew it would be hard. I knew I might falter. But I also knew that I couldn’t keep playing it safe and expect to experience any growth. I knew I needed to get comfortable with being uncomfortable if I was going to do this writing thing at all. I needed to lean in.

Tomorrow is the last day of October and this challenge, and while it has been intense, I know without a doubt, that pressure has brought about growth.
Read More…

Today’s guest post is from one of my dear friends, Megan Baker. Megan and I go way back. Like all the way back to high school and the 90’s. From cheerleading and homecoming dances, to motherhood and ministry, over the years she continues to be someone I value and respect. Plus, let’s be honest- there’s just something about growing up in an era of pooka shell neclaces and high waisted jeans (before they were retro) that cements a friendship in a unique way.

She is open, funny, wise, and talented. She sings, she writes, and she has a rare ability to create comaraderie among women. Megan and I were recently having a conversation about “gifting” vs. “calling” and she had a lot of insight on the topic so I asked her to share it here.

Megan writes over at Up, and you can find her on Facebook and Instagram.


It’s all the rage nowadays to be nurturing our unique gifting and making it our calling. Many of my peers are chasing their dreams, taking life by the horns, and basically rocking it. I see it happening all around me. Sometimes I feel like I’m in that group and sometimes I doubt it.

So how do I know what my gift or my calling is? Read More…

Humiliation can come in many forms for a third grader, but apparently I was in rare form yesterday because all it took to humiliate my third grader was to walk her into her classroom in my slashy workout pants.

It is the second time this school year that I have worn these pants. I know this because the first time I wore them to drop her off, some boy teased her all day about it. “What was your mom wearing? What’s up with those pants? Why are they all slashy? That’s so weird.” Etc. etc. etc.

Kids are jerks, man. Read More…

I told you guys how I used to love cardio. Until the day came when I hated it. What can I say, I’m fickle. But if there is one love I will never deny, it’s my love of carbs. Some people have a sweet tooth. I don’t. I have a carb tooth. I don’t know why, but no one seems to acknowledge this as a real problem. I can turn down dessert 99 times but put a bowl of pasta or a breadstick in front of me and I’ll malfunction every time. I’ve never met a flour tortilla I didn’t love. Yesterday we talked about exercise, and today I want to talk about food.

Before we go any further though, I think it’s important to say that I think there are a hundred different right ways to be healthy and that it will look different for each person. Every person is unique and good grief, there is no one-size-fits-all. Read More…

I’d love to say that I’m one of those women who doesn’t bother with worrying about her weight. One of those women who has it all sorted out and who doesn’t waste time or energy on such banalities. I’d love to say I’m a woman who loves my body solely for it’s capabilities and views my soft edges and C-section scar with fierce pride.

Instead, I’m going to tell you guys the truth: That ever since my body has carried, delivered, and nourished two humans, since my body turned 30, and since I discovered the taste of wine, I have become a woman who is, at any given point in time, trying to lose anywhere from five to fifteen pounds.

What a snooze.

What a tired, cliche’d story.

I hate to admit it, but the truth is that my relationship with my body has been a bit of a bumpy ride since I first gave birth 8 years ago. There’s been ups. There’s been downs. I’ve worn a bikini proudly after Baby #1, but I’ve also stood in front of my bathroom mirror after Baby #2, surveying the damage and crying hot tears that dripped all the way down to my obliterated waistline.

For most of my life up til then I’d gotten away with eating carelessly and my body remained naturally thin. Unfortunately this fostered terrible habits and little self-control, so when my metabolism began to change, instead of helping to fuel it, I foolishly damaged it further. I would yo-yo between throwing caution to the wind and eating whatever I wanted, and extreme restrictions that made me miserable. I foolishly often didn’t eat enough calories, thinking I was doing the “healthy” thing when really I was putting my body into starvation mode.

I also did cardio like a maniac.

I used to love cardio. I always preferred an intense cardio session where I could really sweat it out as opposed to, say, a yoga session- which everyone knows is just rolling around on the ground. I mean, Who has time for that? I’m a busy lady. I need to get in, work hard, and get out so I can move on with my day.

For years I would march like a zombie to the same cardio machines at my gym, grind out a 30 or 45 minute workout and leave. I would make myself miserable between cutting carbs and boring workouts until I would finally get thin enough that all my soft bits didn’t fold over onto each other. It would last for a few months until I remembered how much I loved good food. Then I would slowly, inexorably begin my descent into those extra ten pounds. Okay fine, fifteen. No need to split hairs, here.

Wash, rinse, repeat.

Finally I decided it was time for a different approach. After all, the very definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. By the way, don’t fact-check that definition. It’s just something I heard.  Read More…