Month: July 2007

My Declaration of Independence from the Old Fat Me…

When, in the course of my life, it becomes necessary for me to change how I handle certain aspects of my life, I know God gives me the strength to do just that.

After all, I was made by Him and therefore have not only the right to be healthy, live to a ripe old age and enjoy myself, but I have a duty to my Creator to be a good steward over that which He has entrusted me with.

I shouldn’t have to feel tired, depressed and unattractive, and I refuse to feel that way anymore. I was created to be energetic, happy and beautiful and I will only allow myself to think on those things which are pure and good.

I know losing weight is hard. There are no quick fixes where weight loss is concerned. When it comes to food, I recognize the fact that I have an especially hard time with planning my meals to be both nutritious and satifying at the same time.

But it’s worth it to me to dedicate myself to the task of losing weight, and I will do what it takes to meet my goal weight of 165 pounds.

I am dedicated to my plan for weight loss, and to get there, I will walk and exercise five times a week. And I will make time for myself without feeling guilty about it or letting anyone else make me feel guilty about it.

Now is my time, and I WILL make it happen. This is my Declaration of Independence from the obstacles I struggle with daily. Let the fireworks begin!

This post is in response to the Tales from the Scales May Day Challenge found here.

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You Know You are Drinking too Much Coffee When…


…you answer the door before people knock.
…Juan Valdez named his donkey after you.
…you ski uphill.
…you get a speeding ticket even when you’re parked.
…you speed walk in your sleep.
…you haven’t blinked since the last lunar eclipse.
…you just completed another sweater and you don’t know how to knit.
…you grind your coffee beans in your mouth.
…you sleep with your eyes open.
…you have to watch videos in fast-forward.
…the only time you’re standing still is during an earthquake.
…you can take a picture of yourself from ten feet away without using the timer.
…you lick your coffeepot clean.
…you spend every vacation visiting “Maxwell House.”
…you’re the employee of the month at the local coffeehouse and you don’t even work
there.
…you’ve worn out your third pair of tennis shoes this week.
…your eyes stay open when you sneeze.
…you chew on other people’s fingernails.
…the nurse needs a scientific calculator to take your pulse.
…your T-shirt says, “Decaffeinated coffee is the devil’s blend.”
…you’re so jittery that people use your hands to blend their margaritas.
…you can type sixty words per minute… with your feet.
…you can jump-start your car without cables.
…all your kids are named “Joe”.
…you don’t need a hammer to pound nails.
…you don’t sweat, you percolate.
…you buy coffee by the barrel.
…you’ve worn out the handle on your favorite mug.
…you go to AA meetings just for the free coffee.
…you walk twenty miles on your treadmill before you realize it’s not plugged in.
…you forget to unwrap candy bars before eating them.
…Charles Manson thinks you need to calm down.
…you’ve built a miniature city out of little plastic stirrers.
…people get dizzy just watching you.
…you’ve worn the finish off your coffee table.
…the Taster’s Choice couple wants to adopt you.
…Starbucks owns the mortgage on your house.
…your taste buds are so numb you could drink your lava lamp.
…you’re so wired, you pick up AM radio.
…people can test their batteries in your ears.
…your life’s goal is to amount to a hill of beans.
…instant coffee takes too long.
…you channel surf faster without a remote.
…when someone says. “How are you?”, you say, “Good to the last drop.”
…you want to be cremated just so you can spend the rest of eternity in a coffee can.
…you want to come back as a coffee mug in your next life.
…your birthday is a national holiday in Brazil.
…you’d be willing to spend time in a Turkish prison.
…you go to sleep just so you can wake up and smell the coffee.
…you’re offended when people use the word “brew” to mean beer.
…you name your cats “Cream” and “Sugar.”
…you speak perfect Arabic without ever taking a lesson.
…your Thermos is on wheels.
…your lips are permanently stuck in the sipping position.
…you have a picture of your coffee mug on your coffee mug.
…you can outlast the Energizer bunny.
…you short out motion detectors.
…you have a conniption over spilled milk.
…you don’t even wait for the water to boil anymore.
…your nervous twitch registers on the Richter scale.
…you think being called a “drip” is a compliment.
…you don’t tan, you roast.
…you don’t get mad, you get steamed.
…your three favorite things in life are…coffee before, coffee during and coffee
after.
…you can’t even remember your second cup.
…you help your dog chase its tail.
…your coffee mug is insured by Lloyds of London.
…you introduce your spouse as your coffeemate.
…you think CPR stands for “Coffee Provides Resuscitation.”
…your first-aid kit contains two pints of coffee with an I.V. hookup.

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Budgeting on a Shoestring and a Prayer…

“On a shoestring’ suggests that one’s resources are limited to the laces of one’s shoe.”

From “Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins” by Robert Hendrickson (Facts on File, New York, 1997).

Although we are currently on a shoestring grocery budget, that does not mean that we have always been, nor do we intend to be on one forever. This is a temporary (Lord willing) circumstance that I don’t really care for, but have to live with nonetheless.

Many of you asked a very important question – “How in the world do you do that?” To which I answer, simply…out of necessity. We do not receive any type of public assistance, nor do we shop the local food pantry. I am a budgeter and a coupon clipper…big time.

I do not purchase most convenience foods (I make exceptions for store brand mac n cheese and hot dogs for emergencies) – which excludes chips, cookies, soft drinks…most snacks of any kind. I make everything from scratch. It takes planning meals and preparation and I must admit I dislike almost every minute of it. On Sunday mornings like today, if I don’t start the slow cooker with some chicken and rice, then there is no dinner tonight…because we have nothing that can just be opened and heated up. (Unless you want some corn or green beans.) I buy almost all our fruits and veggies from the farmer’s market locally (which is VERY cheap) and when my kids get hungry for a snack…they get some carrots or celery with a tsp of peanut butter or an apple cut up. (They do love going to Lulu’s (grandma’s house) because there is usually a phethora of goodies to choose from there).

I buy chicken (dark meat because it’s cheaper) and hamburger. We eat a lot of beans and rice with our meals and I have even learned to cook a lot more frugally, stretching to make one pound of hamburger satisfying for all 5 of us at one meal. Like I said…it’s not all that fun, but honestly, I gain some satisfaction from knowing that I can do it. It’s just a temporary phase in our lives, that’s all. God has really been stretching my faith muscles lately, and I firmly believe that although we have traveled some rough roads in our business, that things will pick up and we will succeed, with God’s help.

Yesterday, I was able to pick everything we needed up from the grocery store and only spent $58. Of course, I forgot the toilet paper (which is almost as expensive as feeding us for two-three meals), so I’ll have to go back tomorrow and spend another $10 on that. Once every couple of months, I stock up on papergoods…so realistically, we probably average out to about $200 a month…but $75 is what I shoot for every two weeks.

Thanks for the comments…but don’t despair about your grocery budgets! I think you all are doing great! Even those of you that spend a lot of fresh ingredients…if I could, I would definitely do that…it’s for the best interest of my family!

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What is your grocery budget? Because I like to know these things…

I’m about to head off to the grocery store to buy groceries for our family of 5 on a shoestring budget, which means I spend about $75 every two weeks, or $150 a month. And I couldn’t help but wonder, what do y’all spend on your groceries every month?

Call me curious…but just once, I’d love to see how the other 5% of US Americans with some real wealth buy groceries. Sigh…just the thought of fresh fruits…all I wanted. I’m tingling, people.

So I want to know. What do you spend?

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