Saturday, February 23, 2013

happy, happy, happy

"Ugh. I don't wanna go workout. I wanna just sit here, pin stuff on Pinterest and eat chocolate. The weather is just plain dismal. And the last thing I want to do right now is go get my heart rate up. Okay. Okay. I know I need to go. I know I will feel better after I workout. Blah. Dude! Get your head in the game. You got this. Put in your headphones, and just go."

I wrote the above pep talk approximately one hour ago. And now as I am sitting here, feeling the endorphins kick in, I am extremely thankful that I talked myself into going. As you can tell, I really didn't want to workout. But I knew I needed to, and so I went. And let me tell was fan.tas.tic. Like, really. 

I ran 2 miles. 2 miles!! Some of you may be sitting there going "okay? and?" but to me, that is a big accomplishment. I have never run that far before, and I did it in 22 minutes and 11 seconds! So, I am kinda like, really proud of myself right now. The run itself was really hard, and the first 2-3 minutes after I got back I thought I was gonna die, but for the most part it was awesome! :) Next goal: 3 miles.  

I also did this workout that I came up with last night. 

I will admit that I only went through the workout once cause I was running out of time, but it was still a really good workout. Agh! I just can't get over the fact that I ran 2 miles! I knew I could do it if I pushed myself, but I didn't know if I would push myself that far. Folks, this girl is happy, happy, happy. And now she is gonna go eat her post-workout snack. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

the $24.95 box and what it taught me

I still remember the first time I saw it. Sitting there on the shelf, just begging me to play with it. It was the coolest thing e.v.e.r. My brother and I decided that we just had to have it. We immediately asked Mom if she would buy it for us. I honestly don't remember if I was surprise at her answer, but I do think I was a little bit disappointed. She had said no. She told us that if we wanted it, we would have to work for it and buy it with our own money.

At the time, it seemed like we would never, ever, ever get enough money to buy it. But did that stop us from trying? You bet your bottom dollar it didn't. (yeah I know, horrible pun) I don't remember much about the process of saving for it. I don't remember how we earned the money. But I do remember that we worked together. And I do remember that it seemed to take for--ev--er to earn enough money to buy it. Maybe it was only a week. Maybe it was a month. But for us, it seemed like years.

Finally the day came. I'm pretty sure it was a Saturday. We made a special trip into town to get it. I remember sitting in the car, counting up pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters. (No joke.) I remember us handing over the money and finally getting to hold the box. Oh the sense of accomplishment! Oh the sense of pride! Folks, that may have been one of the greatest moments of my childhood. Why? I will tell you why.

It wasn't about the box, or what was in the box. It wasn't about the fact that we were getting something new. It was about the fact that we had done it all by ourselves. Could our parents have afforded to buy that for us? Probably. If they would have though, would it have helped give us a good work ethic? Absolutely not.

Folks, while I remember playing with it after we bought it, it honestly wasn't our favorite toy. What I remember most about it was the fact that my brother and I had to work for it. It wasn't handed to us on a silver platter. It wasn't even handed to us on a dirty, wooden platter. We had to work for us. At that young age, my parents were instilling a great work ethic into us.

Of all my childhood memories, this one always stands out to me. Whenever I see the box sitting there with the other toys, fond memories come flooding back and I get that same sense of pride as when I first held it in my arms. Throughout my life, I have had to pay for a lot of stuff that most kids don't have to pay for. Clothes, cell phone, car insurance, etc, etc. And while it hasn't always been easy (at times it is down right hard), I think it has been worth it. I take better care of my stuff this way, because I am the one who had to work to get it. And I have a sense of pride and satisfaction that I wouldn't have if it had just been given to me. It has also taught me how to handle money with common sense that isn't so common anymore.

I would like to say two things. The first thing is to parents. Please don't be afraid to make your kids work for stuff, even at a very young age. Society will thank you for this, and so will your kids. The second thing is to kids. Don't hold it against your parents if they make you work for your own stuff. It will make you a better person if you have to sweat a little for something you want. Trust me on this. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Me 'n' My Dog

So today, one of my friends wanted to take some pictures. So we headed down to our river and proceeded to get soaked. Actually, Sabrina proceeded to get soaked. I may or may not have voluntarily gotten soaked. But you'll see pictures of that at the end. Ready? Lights! Camera! Action!!

Water. It is truly her best friend. Which makes me feel just great about myself. 

 Someone once said that the most affectionate creature in the world is a wet dog. 
Truer words have never been spoken. 

 My sunshine doesn't come from the skies. It comes from the love in my dog's eyes. 

Boots, class, and a lil sass. That's what cowgirls are made of. 

 That face. There. On the left. I like it. 

#twirlingpictures #photobomb #mydogisthebest #thoseears

 Cute picture of Bri. Not so cute picture of my with my mouth hanging open. Oh well. Who cares. 

 Whoever said diamonds are a girl's best friend obviously never owned a Golden Retriever. 

 Yes, it was my choice to go in the river in the middle of February. 

 Yes, it was cold. 

 And yes, these pictures were totally worth it. 

God, thank you for this dog. Amen. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

because He first loved us

I will admit that I was feeling a bit grinch-ish toward Valentine's Day this year. Going to a public school (okay, it's actually a private school, but it's more public than any school I have ever been in!) and seeing all the couples, etc. can definitely make a girl start asking what the matter is with her. But then I got to thinking. I am glad I don't have a boyfriend. I'm not just saying that so some guy will read this and go "I am going to rescue her from the pit of singleness!" And I'm not just saying that because it's the popular thing to do in the Christian circle when you don't have a boyfriend/girlfriend. You know, the whole "there-is-someone-out-there-for-me-who-is-more-wonderful-then-all-my-dreams-and-I-am-waiting-patiently-for-him/her." Right now, I am honestly happy that I don't have to deal with a relationship. Not saying that a relationship would/will be all bad, but relationships with people take a lot of work.

So then, you ask, why were you feeling all grinch-ish?? Because to me, and I think a lot of other people, the first thing that comes to mind when they hear the word "Valentine's Day" is romance. As in, mushy, gushy, candle light dinners with your Prince Charming or Cinderella. And it feels like without that romance, Valentine's Day has no point. And then I remembered.

"we love because he first loved us"
1 John 4:19

Valentine's Day isn't about romantic love. Valentine's Day is about love, period. And the reason that we can love, is because He loved us first. You know when you're a kid, and you get into trouble and you always try to blame it on your brother by saying the famous words "he started it!"? Yeah well, God started this one. He started love. 

I love so many things. My mom. My dad. My sister. My brother and his wife. My broskie (for those of you who don't know, that's what I call my one brother). My grandparents. My uncles. My aunts. My cousins. My cousins' spouses. My cousins' kids. My best friends. God. Sunshine. My dog. Chocolate. Cats. Cows. Horses. Working out. Hugs. Stilettos. Makeup. Photography. Driving tractors. Mud. Coffee. Rainbows. And the list goes on and on and on and on. 

I need to change my attitude about this day. I need to love this day because first of all, God gave it to us. And second of all, because God made love. And third of all, because I have a list about 500 miles long of things that I love. 

So what is this (very happy) single person going to do on this day of love? I am going to do some of my favorite things today. Some of the things I love. I am going to hang out with people that I love. And I am going to love life. 

Why? Because He first loved us. That's why. 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Running. It's a Privilege.

Today, I went out and ran somewhere between a mile, and a mile and a half. It was beautiful. I wasn't planning to workout today. But the sun was shining, and I was just in the mood to run! And so I did. I told myself that I had to run at least a mile. And I did. 

The last half mile wasn't really easy. I kinda had to talk myself into finishing, but I did it. 

It was such a great feeling. (Okay, the cool down wasn't so wonderful cause I felt like passing out, but hey! in my mind, that just means I had a good workout) The rest of the afternoon and evening I just felt strong and happy, happy, happy!  I kinda want to go for a run again tomorrow! 

(something to make you laugh)

Someday I may not be able to run. Someday I may be to old to run. Someday I may have a disease that prevents me from running. Someday I may have an injury that prevents me from running. Someday something may happen that makes it so that I can't run. But ya know what? Today is not that day. Today I can walk out the door and go for a mile run even though I haven't run in weeks. And for me, that is a huge blessing. A blessing that I often times forget about. So today, I am going to take advantage of the fact that I have an incredibly healthy body that I can push beyond my wildest dreams. 

And ya know what? You should too. It doesn't have to be anything huge. In fact, maybe it is just walking a mile. But take advantage of that fact that you are healthy! "But," you say, "I'm not healthy!" 
Then start to get healthy. Cut soda out of you diet. Do you have any idea what that might do for you?? If you don't drink soda, cut something else out! Like chips, or maybe desserts. Or, you could add something in. Like drinking 70 oz of water everyday. Or eating a serving of veggies at each meal. Whatever it is, start today. Make a change. 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

it's a Duck Dynasty sort of a day

Yesterday was not a good day. I have decided that today is going to be a much better day. And what better way to make sure it is a good day than to watch Duck Dynasty? Or, if you are at school (like I am) and can't watch Duck Dynasty right now (like me), then just soak up the following Duck Dynasty memes.

Your day will now be better. 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

chocolate is my best friend

So today something horrible happened. I craved chocolate. Don't panic, that isn't the horrible part. The horrible part is that there wasn't any chocolate in the house. (insert tears, tantrums and groans of agonizing pain here) My solution? Make brownies! And not just any brownies, my famous brownies. (Okay, they aren't really famous, they are just really good. And I don't say that because I am a good cook, I say that because they are really hard to mess up.) Anyway. Moving on. 

So I decided that I should post the recipe here, in case any of you were experiencing a craving-chocolate-when-there-is-no-chocolate-to-be-found-in-the-house. Enjoy! 

Mix together:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup butter, melted (I use about half coconut oil)
3 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Mix until you have a lovely, smooth, yummy, chocolate mixture. Spread evenly in a lightly greased 13x9 pan. Bake for about 20-25 minutes at 350F. I generally bake it for 20 minutes, but depending on your oven you may have to a little longer, or a little shorter. The secret is to bake them till they are just barely done. This makes sure that they don't dry out. Let them cool a little bit, and then cut them and watch as they disappear!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Hope you aren't getting sick of dog pictures.....

 Despite the fact that I am sick again, the sun was out this afternoon and so I decided that it was time to take some more pictures of my gorgeous (and photo contest winning!) dog. 
 If you interviewed her and asked her what her favorite thing in life was, she would say water. 
 Not the greatest picture, but the look on her face and her ears made it a must-post.
 My baby grew up when I wasn't looking. 
 I actually felt the heat of the sun!
 Best Friends Forever
 "Mud? What mud?"
"You don't mind if I shake all over you and the camera, do you?"
The more people I meet, the more I love my dog.
 Don't despair. Spring is almost here. 

sunrise to sunset

From sunrise to sunset help me not forget all that you've done for me
From sunset to sunrise help me keep my eyes upon your glory
(From Sunrise to Sunset by Paul Wright)