Monthly Archives: January 2013

Journey Journal: Day 29

Day 29: Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Today was a good day. I started with sitting down with two large glasses of water and my Bible. It was a great start. I had a cup of multi-grain cheerios and a handful of almonds and dried fruit. At work, I had some coffee with a little almond milk. Lunch was a slice of lean meatloaf, a few potato wedges, and a leafy green salad with strawberries and a few almond slivers. My snack was a couple squares of 85% dark chocolate! After work, I stopped by the gym and sauna for about 40 minutes with my friend Leigh. I had plenty of water today! Dinner was a Trader Joe’s salmon burger on my homemade multi-grain bread with a little lite mayo, mixed greens, tomatoes, and onions, some baby carrots, steamed green beans with sautéed mushrooms, garlic, some bacon, and a little bit of diced potato, and some fresh pineapple for “dessert.” I made my calorie goals again today, so I’m pleased. I feel full and good, and my workout was refreshing and stress-relieving!

Dinner is served! Who says healthy isn't delicious?!

Dinner is served! Who says healthy isn’t delicious?!

Journey Journal: Days 25-28

Day 25: Friday, January 25, 2013

Today was likely the coldest day of the year so far. I got sent home early from work because of icy roads, so I had a chance to get in some R&R, including baking some multi-grain bread with flax, sesame, and poppy seeds. It turned out pretty good. Next time, I’m going to try soaking the oats before adding them to the dough though, to see if it will help make the bread more moist. When Bryan got home from work, we had a “date night in” of homemade pizza (light on the cheese; heavy on the vegetables) and watched a movie, before heading to bed early.

Day 26: Saturday, January 26, 2013

Woke early and sent Bryan off to ski with our Jr. High group from church. Never did fall back asleep. Finally rolled out of bed around 9AM and had a cup of coffee and some leftover pizza from last night’s “date night in” (I’m a sucker for cold pizza for breakfast…don’t judge.) Went to a workout with my friend Leigh at GOGA Studios–it was an interesting concept, working out on a vibrating platform, so your muscles have to work extra hard to stay balanced. I especially enjoyed the vibrating massage and sauna! It took a little longer than planned, so I ran straight to my next appointment without eating lunch (bad idea).

Today was the day we got our cow! No, we’re not becoming farmers; several families in our church went in on a cow and had it butchered. It’s a semi-hefty chunk of cash up front, but then I don’t have to buy beef for a whole year (we still have about 8 packs from last year, so we’ll try to use those up first). Last year, the friend who ordered the cow separated it all out himself; this year, several of us decided to pitch in and help with the heavy lifting (literally…grand total of about 1,460 pounds between 9 families!). Not sure if I’m more sore from GOGA or beef sorting, but it was a good day’s work…took about two hours to get it all separated out.

Had a quick (albeit late) lunch, then closed my eyes for about 15 minutes before the nephews arrived so my sister and her husband could have a date night. We had a good time, filled with Wii and Stratego and homemade hamburgers.

Day 27: Sunday, January 27, 2013

After yesterday’s extremely long and exhausting day for both of us, we declared today’s day of rest to actually include rest, so we went out to lunch using a gift card from Christmas at lunch. It was a nice break from cooking. Trying to eat no dairy at a restaurant is more challenging than I thought. Fortunately, the chef was happy to cook the green beans in olive oil instead of butter and to put the cream sauce on the side; besides, the grilled chicken was very flavorful without the sauce, so I’m not sure why I would want to add the extra calories anyway. Bryan had steak and shrimp with green beans and rice, and we both had salads too (we skipped the bread basket and dessert, and both of us brought half of our lunches home for another meal).  I thought about going on a walk, but after all the workouts we did yesterday, I opted to take a brief nap before evening service. Then Bryan made curry for dinner! And we were in bed by about 10:30!

Day 28: Monday, January 28, 2013

Tired today, which is weird since we went to bed earlier than normal last night. Drinking lots of water. Breakfast was sourdough toast with peanut butter and marmalade and a cup of hot green tea. Good 30 minute workout at lunch, followed by a meal of meatloaf, potato wedges, green beans, and a pear. A good day of work, but ready for another early bed time. We’ve been getting to bed earlier on these more active days, and it makes it easier to get up the next day, so I want to keep this pattern going while I can. Bible reading has not been quite as good this past week, so I’m excited to jump back into John and Exodus this week. I think if I can discipline myself to get to bed on time, I would be able to concentrate most effectively on the Word first thing in the morning–with a cup of coffee in hand. After a supper of curried lentils and a mixed greens salad with strawberries, leftover grilled chicken, slivered almonds, and avocados, three of my friends came over for our bi-weekly Bible Study and Fellowship. It was good to rehearse the works of the Lord over the past two weeks, and to pray together for His strength through the next two weeks and beyond. I was once again overwhelmed with my unloveliness and Christ’s great and unconditional love.

Journey Journal: Day 24

Day 24: Thursday, January 24, 2013

Thursday was an interesting day, to say the least. I had a good day of work, followed by a first: an iridology appointment with a nutritionist. Before you think I’ve jumped off an all-natural cliff into the looney bin, I received a gift certificate from a friend for a free consult, and thought it would be worth it to see if there was any  relevancy to the science. I filled out some basic information, then had a large magnifying lens held up to my eyes, as the nutritionist studied the blood vessels and patterns of my irises with some light, looking for inflammation and other marks. Below is a typical chart that iridologists and nutritionists use:

iris chartThe nutritionist that looked at my irises told me that I had a strong constitution, but that I had a severe intolerance, if not an allergy, to dairy products. I knew I was somewhat sensitive to dairy, but she told me that if the lymphatic system was overly taxed by fighting the dairy, it could adversely affect my thyroid and/or heart. (I will have to do some research on this, of course. So far, I do not have any problems with either, but it did make me want to get off the dairy, at least for a trial period.) So, I am cutting out dairy from my diet for at least a month, maybe two, to see if I can see any change. She also said (because of my blood type and eye color) that “Cardio exercise is like eating for you–don’t go a day without it.” So, meanwhile, I’ll be increasing my workouts and water intake and replacing the cream in my coffee with almond milk and coconut milk.

After the nutritionist appointment, I had coffee with a new friend downtown. We had a good time laughing and sharing what God had been doing in our lives. It was a good night.


Journey Journal: Days 14-23

Days 14-16: Monday through Wednesday, January 14-16, 2013

Still eating lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy, and lean meats. Down 3 pounds so far. Finally broke down and bought an elliptical with some Christmas money. We did a lot of research and finally bit the bullet on the Nordic Track ACT Elliptical from Sears Outlet. It took three of us to get the box into the house, then we broke open the box and carried the individual parts upstairs (there was no way we would have made it up the stairs with the box intact). Only downside…they forgot to put the hardware in the box, so we’re waiting on the company to ship us the nuts and bolts to hold the thing together. In the meantime, it was a really rainy week, so I’ve missed my walks.

Creamy, Warm Curry Sauce + Citrusy, Fresh Slaw = Healthy Deliciousness!

Day 17: Thursday, January 17, 2013

Bryan made steamed rice and sautéed chicken thighs with a coconut curry sauce. It was delicious! I tried a new recipe from Food & Wine Magazine: Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Peanuts and Pomegranate.  I used regular oil instead of olive and hazelnut oils (b/c I ran out), and I used chopped roasted raw peanuts instead of hazelnuts. I forgot to add the Parmigiano-Reggiano, but I’m sure that would be a great addition too. Very citrusy and fresh!

Days 18-19: Friday and Saturday, January 18-19, 2013

I enjoyed eating leftover Brussels Sprouts Slaw this weekend. Friday, I got to have coffee while walking with my good friend Ashley downtown. That evening, we had our new neighbors over for dinner. We had a really good time and I’m thankful for this new relationship. Saturday morning, my sister brought her boys over for some Wii Mario Kart and Bowling competitions. Always a blast!

Day 20: Sunday, January 20, 2013

Good service this morning at church. And really good conversation with Bryan about goals and ministry philosophy, etc. A quick lunch, then another Sunday afternoon hike with the young adult group and a healthful stir fry dinner afterwards!

Days 21-23: Monday through Wednesday, January 21-23, 2013

It’s been pretty busy at work this week so far, but it’s enjoyable work, so I don’t mind. I’ve been starting my mornings with oatmeal topped with baked apples, trail mix, and flax seed for breakfast with my coffee. Lunch has been simple and healthful leftovers. Still low on the exercise until the elliptical parts show up, since it’s finally gotten cold here, but I am tracking my food most days and down a total of 5 pounds now! Encouraged. Also encouraged by various relationships at church. We had church supper tonight before prayer meeting, and it was amazing to see the Body working together: preparing food, serving, cleaning up, praying, hugs, conversations, etc. So thankful for each of the friends God has given me–and that the Gospel is bigger than what stage of life we’re in–single, married with no kids, college students, widowed, divorced, teenagers, working moms, stay-at-home moms, retired, kids, etc. God is SO big!!

Journey Journal: Days 12-13

Day 12: Saturday, January 12, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-01-13 at 10.09.24 PM

Saturday, how I love thee! Slept in…really late! Bryan heated up some turkey and cheese stuffed pasta shells, and we had a nice lunch. Drove up to Table Rock and hiked 6 miles! Whew! There were a few moments on the way up that I was a little leery, but the after about a quarter of the way in, it seemed to get a little easier. I’m so glad Bryan suggested hiking today! Stopped by “The Forest Coffeehouse” for a coffee on the way home (my reward for not complaining on the trail…or maybe just for finishing). Got home and took a shower, then had a quick bite to eat before dismantling the Christmas decor. It didn’t take as long as I thought it would, so that was a blessing. Overall, really great day!

Day 13: Sunday, January 13, 2013

Challenged by Pastor’s sermon this morning from John 2. Then had “Journey Group” with our 2nd graders. Today, our journey brought us to God being “Never-tiring.” It was a great encouragement, especially since we had two little girls ask for prayer for their moms to get more sleep (before they knew what the lesson was about). Also, nearly everyone in the class knows someone who either has cancer or is really sick with something else; there are some kids that are dealing with heartaches that are hard for me to think about, let alone a second grader know how to process. But we talked about being able to rest in God because not only does He not sleep, He also never gets weary AND has the power to make all things new. It was a big concept, but I think they really got it!

After a quick lunch, we headed to Paris Mountain for a hike with some of our young adult group. We ended up buying an annual pass–this is one activity Bryan and I are both really enjoying! Not sure exactly how far we went today, but I’m estimating close to 5 miles, based on the trail maps. Afterwards, it was back to our house for a grill-out of beef kebabs, grilled onions, peppers, and tomatoes, and some roasted lemon-garlic broccoli and cauliflower. Yum! So thankful for this group and how God has brought us together and worked on us through each other. Had some really good, Gospel conversations on the hike and tonight. Refreshed and ready to start a new week!

Journey Journal: Days 10-11

Day 10: January 10, 2013

Long day. Good walk with my friend Shannah at lunch today! It was exactly the break I needed to refresh and hit the ground running again at work. Had a yummy salad of mixed greens, vibrantly colored peppers, diced green onion and celery seed dressing, along with a delicious piece of pork tenderloin! I love it when my food is both nutritious and colorful! Spent a good chunk of my day in the Word, working on a Study Guide. For dinner, we made a big batch of jumbo stuffed shells, filled with lean ground turkey, cooked greens, and part skim cheese, onion, garlic, and plenty of herbs, and topped with homemade marinara sauce. Then we watched My Neighbor Totoro, which happens to be one of my favorite anime films! It was a wonderful and quiet evening for a “date night in”!

Day 11: January 11, 2013

Started the day with some baked apples, a banana, and half of a bagel. Got a good start on my assignments for the work day, and then had a lunch of that beautiful salad (same as yesterday) and leftover stuffed shells–yum! Very profitable day at work…always encouraging, especially before a weekend! Tonight is dinner with friends, and I made a special loaf of artisan bread that has whole wheat, oatmeal, flax and sesame seeds. Can’t wait to pair it with Rachel’s Tomato Tortellini Soup!

Journey Journal: Days 7-9

Day 7: Monday, January 7, 2013

Today was another leftovers day, using up the last, lonely produce in the fridge. For breakfast, I had more multi-grain pancakes; lunch was a bbq beef sandwich. Had Ryan and Emily over for dinner, and experimented a bit. I had a bag of red potatoes that I sliced in the food processor with an onion; pan fried them in butter with some garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Meanwhile, we pitted and chopped a package of plums and simmered them in a little butter with the juice of a lime and two lemons, some honey, nutmeg, a little thyme, and a pinch of coarse salt. It turned out very good! At the last minute, I fried up an egg to top the potatoes and chopped up some strips of fresh green pepper. No workout today, unfortunately. Still working on getting to bed earlier so I can workout in the morning.

Day 8: Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Multi-grain pancake for breakfast; leftover bbq beef, red potatoes, and plums for lunch; a bowl of vegetarian black bean soup from Panera for dinner. Since we were out of food, we decided to go to Panera for dinner (using a gift card we got at Christmas) and pick up some groceries. No more exercise than walking for about 30 minutes through Target (does that count?).

Day 9: Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Breakfast was half a bagel with a little butter and a banana; dinner was the other half of the bagel; and lunch was plums, a large bunch of celery with some peanut butter, and two more of those multi-grain pancakes. Really busy day at work today–didn’t leave till about 6:25 tonight–but it was a good day. Had some good time reviewing the DFF6 script and searching Scripture for accompanying passages to use for the study guide; passages that stood out to me especially were Psalm 66, Isaiah 43, and Daniel 3. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet my friend to walk tonight, but it turns out my workout buddy forgot her gym clothes too, so it’s okay. I need to make sure I workout tomorrow! Fortunately, I’m still down 2 pounds from my New Year’s Day weigh in.

Journey Journal: Days 4-6

Day 4: Friday, January 4, 2013

Had a small glass of orange juice and a cup of coffee with my multi-grain pancakes before heading to work. Good day at work, though it didn’t feel like Friday with a holiday right in the middle of the week. Lunch was a few leftover pork, brussels sprout, and carrot egg rolls with a half a cup of homemade baked apples. Had a cup of tea and a square of dark chocolate for an afternoon snack, and did some reorganizing in the back office at work, which I counted as my weight training for the day. After work, we walked 1.5 miles. For dinner, I had some barbecued beef on a small pumpernickel roll with a slice of swiss cheese, a salad, green beans, and more baked apples for dessert.

Day 5: Saturday, January 5, 2013

Slept in! Praise God for Saturdays! Bryan made rice and eggs for breakfast, and we had some baked apples again–they’re kind of addicting! Didn’t track my food today–it’s good to have a cheat day about once a week. We still focused on vegetables and lean meat, and we walked a 5K together in the afternoon before heading out on our continued search for an elliptical. We think we found the one we want, thanks to some recommendations from friends. For dinner, we had our friends Jared and Heather over and got to use our shish kebab set for the first time! (It was a Christmas gift from my folks.) We marinated some beef and pork, along with shallots and bell peppers and fired up the grill. Our friends brought baked broccoli, and we had some mushroom garlic risotto as a small side. For dessert, we shared a French Press of coffee with some dark chocolate. We talked much…of life and struggles, of freedom and truth, of sorrows and joys, and much of Christ. So thankful for godly comrades in the faith that share a passion for Jesus. It was a sweet ending to a long week.

Day 6: Sunday, January 6, 2013

More pancakes and coffee for breakfast. Lunch was a smorgasbord of leftovers–cleaning out the fridge before grocery shopping time again. We had pork and rice with mushrooms, onions, and peppers: it hit the spot! My cousin Ryan made it into town, ready for his final semester of college! We had a good conversation with him and one of his fellow students. Then when the guys gathered upstairs to listen to old records, I decided to take a 2.5 mile walk (to finish my weekly 25K goal). It was a beautiful afternoon, and I meditated on the mercy of God (the attribute of God that we reviewed with our second graders this morning). After a quick shower, we headed to church for a “Concert of Prayer” service. It was times of prayer interspersed with various songs reflecting on the different types of prayer: from adoration, to confession, to petition and intercession, and finally, thanksgiving. It was beautiful! We did some prayer times individually, some with a prayer partner, and some in small groups. It was a refreshing time. And afterwards, my cousin and his friend came back to the house for a dinner of cubed steak, salad, and roasted vegetables (parsnips, carrots, cauliflower, red potatoes and onions), more conversation and good music, and a dessert of wontons filled with baked apples–fried, and tossed in cinnamon sugar. And now for bed, as we must rise early for Bryan’s first day back to school for the semester! Not sure where Christmas break went. Good night.

Journey Journal: Day 3

Day 3: January 3, 2013

Full day of work today, including putting away the company Christmas tree. Started with a breakfast of multigrain pancakes with pecans and cranberries, coffee and cream. Had a snack of baby carrots, celery sticks, and green pepper strips. Lunch was 4 oz. of pork tenderloin and a red potato with sour cream. After work, I went for a quick walk. I made it 2.25 miles tonight before my leg started aching, so I stopped a little short of the 3.1 mile goal and stretched instead. Bryan had a classmate over for games and dinner tonight. His friend is vegetarian, so I made a big, leafy green salad with tomatoes, broccoli, and feta, herbed mushroom risotto with smoked gouda, and buttered white beans with garlic and parsley. Who says rice and beans is boring? 😉 After cleaning up from dinner, I made a giant batch of applesauce from our last batch of fall’s apples. Looking forward to waking up tomorrow to the smell of apples and cinnamon! Wasn’t able to finish Genesis last night, so I finished it tonight. “God meant it for good” (Gen. 50:20) — He always does!

2013 Journey Journal: Days 1 and 2

Day 1: January 1, 2013

Wow! Is it really already 2013?! Where did 2012 go? Today, we slept in. Brunch was a Multi-Grain Cranberry Pecan Pancake recipe from my aunt, with a tiny bit of pure maple syrup, a handful of fresh blackberries, and a tablespoon of whipped cream, with a cup of coffee and a small glass of orange juice. No lunch today, as brunch wasn’t until noon. Set off for our first 3.1 mile walk! Made it in less than an hour, despite the freezing rain, so that’s encouraging on the first day back. Dinner was homemade egg rolls, filled with lean pork, shredded brussels sprouts and carrots, garlic, salt, pepper, and ground ginger!  Read Genesis 40, as I continue studying the Biblical View of Food and Drink in Scripture. And in bed by 11PM!

Day 2: January 2, 2013

Yesterday went so well, that I’m motivated to not give up yet today! Ate 2 small multi-grain pancakes again (thankful we made a batch big enough to cover breakfasts for the rest of the week). Had a cup of iced coffee this morning. Went for a walk with my friend Shannah and her dog Mr. Sanders over lunch break today–another 3.1 miles! Had 2 leftover egg rolls for lunch with plenty of water. Dinner will be a slice of pork loin, a large leafy salad with some carrots, and a baked potato with just a bit of butter and sour cream. I plan on finishing Genesis in my study tonight…we’ll see how far we get before my hopeful bedtime of 10PM. Hoping to shift my bedtime up, so I can rise early to walk before work.