Thursday, May 29, 2014

Why I'm Hooked on Dr. Phil

I first became a fan of Dr. Phil when he was on Oprah and I watched regularly when he started his own show.  I read the books he wrote.  I even read Robin's first book.

And then I lost interest.

I never disliked him.  I just didn't care anymore.

But recently, I've discovered Dr. Phil all over again.

His current season seems to really focus on a few primary categories:  teens accusing someone of abusing them (are they telling the truth??), catfishing (especially adults who are getting heavily scammed), abusive/unhealthy love situations.

But there is something very different, still, about Dr. Phil's approach.  And that's why I still enjoy watching his show.

On typical other talk shows, if someone is accusing someone else of molesting them, for example, there would be a lot of screaming and accusing.  And if it seemed like the accuser was lying, the parents were really made out to be angelic and the teen was made out to be a horrible person.

On typical other talk shows, someone twisted up in a catfish scam (where they have formed an online relationship with someone who isn't a real person) will be humiliated and made to feel really stupid.  And usually a lot of yelling about who's right and who's wrong.

But with Dr. Phil... while he does point out the obvious in his genteel southern-esque type of style...

He is matter of fact with those catfished people.  He isn't trying to humiliate them.  He is logically showing them the truth of the situation.

When it comes to those out of control teens who are raging and disrespectful and sometimes making false allegations... he doesn't just point out all the ways they are acting out, he also shows the bad choices the parents have made.

What it boils down to is that in any story, there are many different factors, many different players.  And Dr. Phil knows how to highlight many aspects of the story.  And he knows how to reach out to the hurting person and offer them help through intensive therapy or whatever.  But he does it in such a way as to make it a gift, not a punishment.

So, yes, I admit it.  I still like Dr. Phil.  It's sensational.  It's marketed to grab your attention.  But there is sstill something about the show that I like.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Going Through the Motions

Do you ever find yourself doing something simply because you've always done it?

And one day, you realize that you heart just isn't in it?

But you keep it to yourself.  You just keep plugging along, filling in the blanks, taking each step, fulfilling the duties.  And little by little, your quality of effort starts to decline.

Because deep down, you just don't really care anymore.  Or you just feel like your efforts are futile anyway.  Or you just keep doing it because you just think you're supposed to and you don't feel like you have much other choice.

It's not a good way to feel.  It's not a good way to do.

Maybe it's volunteer work at your church or school.  Maybe it's parenting or your marriage.  Maybe it's your job.  Maybe it's your hobby.  Maybe it's your housework.  Maybe it's your faith.

You've got a choice to make.  You can keep on going through the motions and being unhappy on the inside.  Or you can make a change.

What happens if I quit?

I can quit anything.  But can I live with the consequences?  Quitting my job has far more serious consequences than if I step down from a volunteer position in my church.  And stepping down from something that's a good thing can have good consequences - like being replaced by someone with more passion and new, fresh ideas.

What happens if I don't quit?

This can be a harder question.  Because you have to be really honest with yourself.  Will quitting have a negative impact on others?  Are you holding on because you think you are the one and only?  Will holding on to whatever it is end up hurting you further?  Am I holding on to this for selfish reasons?

What do I do next?

Take a break. Follow a different passion.  Your next "thing" will show itself to you.  Or might already be showing itself to you.

The bottom line is that there is no shame in stepping away from something.  If you're heart's just not in it... if it's no longer bringing you joy... if you dread doing the associated tasks... if you find yourself not completing tasks, procrastinating... it's ok to step away.  It's ok to let someone else step up.  It's ok to follow something different.

It's also ok to realize that something truly is valuable and worthy.  And that it's worth fighting for, struggling through.  

What's important is that you make a choice.  You either live it fully, embrace it, make it the best you can.  Or you walk away, take a break.  

But don't just go through the motions.  Don't just do it because you've always done it.  Life is too short!

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Lessons From A Crouton

It's funny how life can give you lessons in very unexpected places.

I never thought that a moment involving a crouton, a teenager, and a vaccuum would result in a lot of deep understanding about problem solving, when to keep my mouth shut, and the importance of sometimes making a bigger mess in order to get things cleaned up.

I was watching a teen in our church vaccuum the sanctuary floor after dinner on Wednesday.  He came upon a crouton.  The vaccuum just pushed it around - it was too tall to go under the vaccuum and get sucked up.

I watched the scene unfold.  My Grown-Up-Mom eyes saw the situation and said "Just pick it up and throw it away."  I could even hear my Mom Voice inside my head - sounding authoritative and bossy.  But something made me just sit and watch.

He stepped from behind the vaccuum, carefully stepped on the crouton and crushed it into dust.  Then back to the vaccuum and sucked it all up.

My Grown-Up-Mom inner voice flinched and wanted to say, "What are you doing? Look at the bigger mess!  Why didn't you just pick it up and throw it away?"

But then it dawned on me - this was actually brilliant problem solving.

And the more I thought about it, the more I realized how many different ways that crouton could have come up off of that floor.  He could have tipped the vaccuum and tried to suck it up whole.  He could have picked it up and thrown it away.  He could have avoided it and pretended like it wasn't there.

But without hesitation, he saw the problem, found a solution, carried it through and it was done.

A 5 second situation that ended up teaching me.

About making a bigger mess in order to fix the problem.

About not fearing messiness.

About making a decision and sticking to it - even when it involves risk.

About knowing when to keep your mouth shut.

To someone else... it might have been just a crouton, just a vaccuum.  But to me... it was more than that.  I sat and reflected on how I need to let my kids, for example, make their own bigger messes and figure out their own way to do things, fix things, accomplish their goals.

I thought about areas in my own life, in my home, in my work, in my church - areas where it might take a bit of a messier mess to make something better first.  From simple things like cleaning out my closet to more complicated things like rejuvenating a ministry.

So often, I want to contain the mess to clean it up.  I want the mess to have boundaries.  I want the mess to still have a sense of control to it - a simple crouton on the floor.  But sometimes... God needs me to mess the mess up a bit more.  Maybe to show that the problem is bigger than it looks (spread out crumbs of a crouton).  Maybe to make it easier to clean up (so the vaccuum fits slides right over it).

Where do I need to step on a crouton?

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Thoughts On School Lunches

There's been a lot of coverage in the news lately about schools and kids with negative balances in the cafeteria.  There are stories of food being served to and then taken away from kids because of a negative balance on their cafeteria account.  Stories of kids crying due to the shaming, kids being hungry the rest of the day.

Then there's the silver lining - the people who step in and pay the negative balance of all the kids so that the children won't be refused food.

I think this is awesome.  Because anyone who has their heart in the place to want to protect kids from shame and make sure that kids get a good meal - that's someone doing the right thing.

But things have to change beyond bringing balances up to zero dollars.  Because what happens the next day?  Another lunch or breakfast purchased... and another negative balance.

Most school lunches cost around $2-3.  My school's elementary lunches are $2.30.  In a week, if my child buys every day, that's $11.50.

Bring a balance to zero, it goes negative the next day and you are back in the same boat.

Bring a balance to zero, give an extra $20 and the kid eats for almost 2 weeks.

But more than that, put pressure on the school to change their policies.

Lunch ladies should never be the Lunch Gestapo.  Schools shouldn't be empowering them or expecting them to assert this type of control over who does or doesn't eat.  A lunch lady should be focused on providing food for kids.  Period.

Negative account?  I think the office should handle it.  I get that every role in a school is overworked, underpaid, and under appreciated.  But I think you end up with a conflict of interest when you ask the people who prepare and serve the food to also police the food.

A consistently negative account may well be a sign of bigger problems.  Did a parent lose a job?  Was there a divorce? Or illness?  By following up more directly, maybe the school ends up learning something valuable about the child's home environment.  Maybe the child needs to be on a lunch program but the parent hasn't been able to pursue that for whatever reason.

Can the PTA or PTO somehow be involved in the solution?  We do fundraisers for classroom iPads but what if there was a fundraiser to provide a cushion fund for lunch accounts?  Maybe the PTA/PTO can work with the cafeteria to sponsor a dinner and parents and community people can attend and the money raised becomes that fund?

I have a lot of emotional connections to food and hunger and embarassment and shame.  I don't have any bad memories of not being able to eat at school or anything.  I have no idea if I had free lunches or if my mom sent in lunch money or if I packed a lunch - I just don't recall.

In my ideal world, no person should feel shame about food.  It's a dream, I know.  And maybe the first step is empowering people to encourage the hungry and support anyone who needs food.  Heck, even picking up the bill for a friend or co-worker when they realize they forgot their wallet is a way of encouraging and supporting!

What can we do as a community to help alleviate the school lunch hunger situation?  Call your school and ask how they handle cafeteria accounts that are negative.  Offer to head up a fundraiser to alleviate the negative balances and build positive ones.  Or if you're just extremely generous, put your own money towards it.  But more than throwing money at it... see if there is some way to work with and support your local school to make changes to their current policies.  Get involved with your school board if necessary.  You don't have to have kids in school to be involved.  You can take action as a concerned citizen.

Paying off negative balances is certainly generous and gives us all warm fuzzies.  But it's essentially a bandage on a bigger problem.  What can YOU do to help fix thebigger problem?

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Monday, May 12, 2014

Sing For The Moment (and for your kids!)

We have a guest blogger today! Brad is a friend of mine from church.  I've enjoyed watching him grow in the last several years.  I was friends with his mom first - we sing together on our Worship Team.  Brad is a retired hip hop artist - took retirement for marriage and kids.  I love this post from him!


“So to all you kids all across the land/There’s no need to argue, parents just don’t understand.” – Will Smith aka The Fresh Prince

These lyrics were printed on a sheet of paper and taped to the outside of my bedroom door as a kid.  At the time, it was an act of defiance.  A snarky (and I thought clever) way to tell my Mom and Dad that they could not control what genre of music I enjoyed.  If memory serves me correctly, I posted the sign immediately after my mom confiscated my Ice Cube “The Predator” cassette tape.  Fast forward 20 years later and I am now a father of a 2-month old baby boy and a Step-Father to a 14 year old boy (err man?) and a 11 (going on 25) year old girl.  I think back to that sign I so proudly displayed on my bedroom door and try to let it serve as a reminder for how I felt at their age, specifically, when it comes to music.

So, full disclosure: I’m a 30 year old Caucasian, middle-class male with red hair.  Just screams hip-hop lover, doesn’t it?  There are some things in life that just reach us in ways that really can’t be explained.  Hip-hop music is one of those things for me.  As an adolescent, the passion of the music and the culture spoke to me.  I felt that I had to constantly defend the music that I loved to those around me who wondered how in the world a white kid from the north-side of Indianapolis, Indiana could possibly relate to the messages being presented in rap lyrics.  What grabbed me at a young age was the raw emotion and power of the culture.  It was a movement.  It was a means for escape. 

If you ask my mother, I’m sure she will admit to feeling a bit uneasy (to say the least) about my love for hip-hop music growing up.  The uneasiness wasn’t just due to the explicit content or the baggy clothes.  I don’t think she feared that I would one day drop out of school, join a gang and become a convicted felon.  I believe the uneasiness came into play when she had to wonder how hip-hop music would influence my development.  As a parent you do your best to teach your kids right and wrong.  You give advice, you lead by example and you give them the love and resources they need to succeed.  At some point, it’s up to them to choose their own path.  Thankfully, the foundation she and my father laid out for me was one that allowed me to channel my love for hip-hop in a positive way.  It was and continues to be an avenue I use to mature and grow.  It has given me a sense of perspective on life that I would otherwise not have had.

Now that I’m a parent and admittedly losing contact with what is current and new in the music world, I want to make a conscious effort to support my kids’ taste in music.  I want to engage in conversations with them about what they enjoy listening to and what certain songs mean to them.  I want to encourage them to explore all different kinds of music so that they might find what is out there that can touch their lives.  Will I find myself alone in the car belting out a Katy Perry tune or go for a run with Taylor Swift in my headphones? No. But that doesn’t mean I have to discount what it means to my kids.  Just because I can’t relate to it, doesn’t mean they don’t.  I know first-hand the kind of power a connection with music can bring and it is certainly something I want my kids to experience.  Music can give you a voice.  It can provide exactly the right words at exactly right time.  It can create memories.  It can inspire. 

I vow to not be the old guy who thinks that nothing is as good as it used to be.  That doesn’t mean I won’t sneak in some Eminem or Notorious B.I.G. when in control of the stereo and they have nowhere to go.  Hey, what goes around comes around and I’m thankful to this day for the music my father introduced to me.  Especially now that I can truly comprehend the meaning of the message.  I vow to use music as a way to connect with my children.  I’m sure they will find other reasons to put their own signs on their bedroom doors.  


And if you'd like a little insight into Brad's music, check this out:

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Saturday, May 10, 2014

Celebrating 29 Years

I was born in California to my mother and father. My father was a loser. Couldn't hold a job and didn't try very hard. According to my mother, marrying him was an act of rebellion. In her stubbornness, she made many efforts to make it work. But it didn't.

When I was 3, mom packed us up and we moved to Lexington, KY to live with her parents. My father also moved home- to Louisville, KY. From what I'm told and from the little I remember, he didn't come around much. I do remember my mom and I driving to Louisville and spending Christmas with his family. By the time I was 5, my mom was fed up with him never paying any child support, never making any effort to see me, of him just being the loser he was. She was getting ready to start dental school, my grandparents were about to move to Elizabethtown, KY and we would be on our own. She stopped making the effort to include him in my life. If he wasn't willing to put out at least a 50% effort, she couldn't afford the energy and time to make it happen. He vanished. Never attempted contact.

I was a fatherless child.

I started school. Most of the other kids had dads. But divorce was becoming a growing phenomenon. My mom had me go to a school sponsored group for kids of divorced parents. But I couldn't relate- the other kids all knew their dads and spent most of the time talking about visiting their dad or meeting dad's new girlfriend. I just didn't have a dad.

My mom had started dating a man when I was 5. Around the time my grandparents moved away, he became more prevalent in our lives. He wasn't around a lot but he and my mom were slowly getting to know each other and spend time together. Things got more serious between them. Mom was in dental school, he was in medical school. He was scheduled to finish a year before her.

They got married the summer before I started 5th grade. Mom and I would travel each weekend up to Cincinnati- where my dad was doing his internship and residency and such. Several weeks before mom and I made our sudden move to Cincinnati, a major event happened.

The man my mom married... adopted me.

I had wanted a dad. All my friends had dads. I don't recall any other single moms in my group of friends. And a dad just seemed like a nice addition to a family. Usually playful and funny, slightly embarrassing, strong and secure and safe. At least that is how things looked from my dadless perspective.

Being adopted was a big deal for me. It meant that I had stepped up. It symbolized full acceptance of me. It was a fresh start. As an adult, the hard part of my adoption was dealing with the fact that my birth father came to the courthouse and signed away his paternal rights. The lawyers made him a deal he couldn't refuse- we would have no claim on all of that child support he'd never paid. In the processing of that, it did feel like he was selling me off. But it was truly the most loving decision he could have made- even if it was done for selfish reasons.

On May 10, 1985 - I became my daddy's daughter.

My mom and dad went to the courthouse. I stayed in the lawyer's office with his secretary (his wife). I remember being excited to play on her typewriter. And I remember the look on my dad's face when they came back.

Every year, my dad and I celebrate my Adoption Day. A-Day. When I lived at home, it meant a dinner out, just the 2 of us. Once I moved away to Indiana, it meant phone calls and cards. But we still recognize the day every year.

I wouldn't be where I am right now if my mom and dad hadn't gotten married. And I wouldn't have felt as much a part of the new family unit if my dad hadn't adopted me. And given everything else that was chaotic in my childhood... having that anchor of safety in my dad gave me a level of confidence that I know helped me become the person I am now.

My dad has been my dad from the word go. While he wasn't a perfect dad... there is a lot he has done that means more than words could ever say. When everything from my childhood started surfacing, he loved me and believed me and helped me. He paid for my therapy. He paid for my hospital stay. He paid emotionally for the horrible attention-seeking choices I was making. He paid for college- all 5 years.

Like any parent, he has made a lot of mistakes. But they are dad mistakes and I am glad to have those unique challenges in my life that only a dad can bring.

More than that, he has taught me about faith, spirituality, loyalty, determination, compassion, and sacrifice.  Just like a dad is supposed to.

Happy A-Day to me and my dad!

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Friday, May 9, 2014

This Mother's Day

This year, things feel pretty different.

I don't want flowers.  I don't want jewelry.  I don't want to be pampered.  I don't have a need to be celebrated.

I just want a peaceful day with my kids.  Or a chaotic day with my kids.

I just want the day with my kids.

A couple of weeks ago, I had a guest post from my friend, Tim.  If you didn't read it then, go read it now.

Really - go on.  I'll wait right here.

Is my Mother's Day wish becoming more clear now?

Tim is part of my church family.  I'm rather fond of his kids.  And it breaks my heart that they've had all these years of dealing with not having a mom for Mother's Day.

I think about the projects done at school to celebrate mothers.  The conversations at church.  The advertisements on the radio and on TV.  The displays in every store.

I've always been aware of the heartache of these kinds of holidays for people and kids who don't have that parent to celebrate.  I didn't have a dad to celebrate for Father's Day for most of my elementary years - but I don't have strong memories of how I felt about it.

I know that there will be visits made to gravesites to "see" mom this coming Sunday.  And I know that I am incredibly blessed to have my mom here and that I am here to mother my children.

So this Mother's Day... I just want to appreciate being a mom.

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Thursday, May 8, 2014

Opening Day at the Market

It's still very early in the season so we didn't expect a lot of produce.  But we did expect more of the vendors to be there!  We were disappointed that our favorite regulars weren't there for opening day - like the cake ball lady and the honey lady.  And we had been excited for some of the new vendors like the pierogis but they were no shows this week.

But we made the best of it and enjoyed our morning, anyway!

Look at these beautiful colors!  Gallagher Farms is always a favorite stop!


One of our favorite snacks - Grandpa's Beef Jerky.  Jeff likes the red pepper, Zach likes the BBQ, and I like the Cherry Chili and the Jalapeno.  So yummy and all homemade!

One of our favorite treats- the Walking Waffle!  It has pearl sugar baked in so no need for syrup!

Indy Morsel is a new venture at the Market this year.  They were giving out samples of popcorn - that had been popped in bacon grease!  HEAVEN.  Indy Morsel is a meal service - you order the week before and then pick up at the Market on Saturday morning.  I'm eager to try it out!

Our favorite - Mathoo's Eggrolls!!

Zach picked out the blooms from Bliss Haven for Mommy.  But then wanted it for himself so they are now in his room on his dresser.  With those eyes... how can I complain?
I am eager to watch the market grow in the next few weeks as more of the regulars return and the newbies show their wares!

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Roller Derby! #RCRebelAlliance

I took the kids to the Roller Derby this weekend and we had a blast!  It was a little slow going but as they caught on, they ended up having a blast!

Race City Rebels is a men's roller derby team for Indianapolis.  I will not pretend to speak roller derby.  I didn't grow up watching it.  Before this past weekend, I'd only gone once before on a date night with Jeff.

Here is what makes it family friendly:

- Kids 10 and under are free.
- The concession stand is not a rip off and is not crazy overpriced.
- Kids can line up to high five the team during announcements.
- No one there is expecting kids to be perfectly behaved.
- Roller derby isn't just about skating and slamming into people.  I loved watching the kids pick up on the strategy of the game.

Here is where some families might find it less than ideal:

- Some of the player's names might make you blush.
- Some folks have a potty mouth during the bout.
- Halftime means a smoke break for the majority of those coming to watch.
- They sell beer.

Now, none of those things impact my choice to take my kids or not.  I'm fine with my kids seeing adults smoke because we talk openly about it being a bad idea.  I'm fine with my kids hearing bad words - we ignore it or just talk about it not being the best choice.  I'm fine with the player's names - the vast majority are fine and the few that may be questionable will most likely go over a kid's head anyway.  My kids see me drink so serving beer doesn't bother me.  And we didn't see anyone being stupid about it.

Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.  For me, that would have meant just 1 ticket since I had 3 kids with me who were under age 10!  And they made up for it with the 3 trips to the concessions stand.  But I didn't mind since it was fairly priced.  First trip we got supreme nachos for me (chips, meat, cheese sauce, jalapenos, sour cream - I couldn't finish it, it was huge), walking tacos for Teagan and her friend (bag of fritos, meat, cheese, sour cream), and regular nachos for Zach (chips, cheese sauce to dip into).  Then 2 bottles of gatorade and 2 bottles of water.  And it was just under $20.  Later, the kids hit the stand for candy and later again for 2 soft pretzels ($5).

The Forum in Fishers hosts the Race City Rebels and also the Circle City Derby Girls.

The upcoming schedule for home bouts for the Race City Rebels:
6/7 - Capitol City Hooligans
7/12 - Jerk City All-Stars
8/9 - St. Louis B-Keepers

The upcoming schedule for  home bouts for the Circle City Derby Girls (Tickets are still $10 presale, $12 at the door.  Kids age 6 and under are free.)
  • June 14th
  • July 19th
  • August 2nd
Katniss Evermean

Brad Religion

Jammer for the Race City Rebels working his way past the opposing team.
I was provided with free admission to this event.  All opinions are my own.

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Honest-To-Goodness Indiana

I recently had an opportunity to connect with several departments of tourism and visitors' bureaus for various counties and such in the state of Indiana.

And I fell in love with my state all over again.  I wish I could be independently wealthy so that I could spend all my time traveling the state and visiting all of the fun and interesting and unique things that Indiana has to offer!

But since I have a day job and this blog thing is my hobby... I'm going to share a few of the places that I am hoping to visit this summer and fall.

Brown County 

I will soon be heading to a girlfriend getaway long weekend in a cabin in Brown County.  I am excited because there are some really fun events taking place that weekend - like Taste of Brown County.  And Brown County is just a beautiful place - hills and trees and green everywhere.  And so many unique places to stop and visit like the little town of Story or hiking (or even ziplining) in Brown County State Park or visitng the Brown County Art Colony.


I also want to plan a family weekend to Columbus, IN.  I want to make (and buy and eat) marshmallows from one of my all time favorite sweet spots - 240Sweet.  I want to go to The Commons and KidsCommons and Zaharakes.  Columbus has some fantastic walking routes, too, which seem like a great way to see parts of the city and surrounding areas.

Indiana Dunes

Indiana has a beach!  No - really!  This would be a long weekend family trip.  Time at Indiana Dunes, a visit to Kosciusko County and Marshall County.  I want a day on the beach.  I want to hike and explore the dunes.  I want to visit the statues in Kosciusko and maybe catch a show at the Wagon Wheel Theatre, and I want to see a few barn quilts in Marshall County.


This would be a day with Christy.  We would leave early on a Saturday - or maybe make it an overnight and go out Friday evening.  There are some awesome deals for a "Just Us Girls" getaway in Richmond.  Then a day filled with the Wine & Ale Trail, the Chocolate Trail, the Tiffany Window Trail, and a stop at Warm Glow Candles.

Lafayette and Montgomery County

I want to do the zipline adventure in Crawfordsville.  Tree top zipline course that takes a couple of hours to complete - I'm in!  Lunch at the Triple XXX (famous burger joint).  A visit to Wolf Park.  The Butterfly Sculpture Garden at the Columbian Park Zoo.  And there is a Fiddlers' Gathering the last weekend in June that sounds fun!  This could be a family weekend or a fun trip with a friend.

This is just the top of the list of all the places I want to see and things I want to do this summer.  I'm also itching to get back down to Santa Claus, IN but I might wait until this fall when they launch a new fall event.  And there are also all of the great things to do right here in Indianapolis!  I'm eager to get to our Zoo to meet the orangutans later this summer and walk the Canal and attend fun festivals like Vintage Indiana and Dig IN.

So much fun to be had in my state!!  What are your favotire things to do in Indiana?  Or in your local neck of the woods?

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Monday, May 5, 2014


I walked a 5K on Sunday.

It was a cross country course so all grass or dirt.  That proved to be a little challenging from time to time.  This was the first time this event was held so the attendance was very low - I'd say there were about 10 runners and 20 walkers if I'm being optimistic.  But that didn't matter.  I was there for me.

This was my first 5K event since...

In 2011, I did the Mini Marathon.  13.1 miles.  It was a struggle.  Months before the event, my training was disrupted by work demands.  I did the entire distance but not as well as I had hoped.  And then I entered a phase of high stress and depression for about 2 years.

Not a fun time.

I might have done the anniversary event - my first ever running event was the Fishers Freedom Festival 5K and I did it the years following, even if I could only walk it.  But I think I skipped it last year?  I don't know - it's all kind of blurry.  I need to put together a timeline to help me remember.

But Sunday, I did a 5K for the first time in a couple of years.  Yes, I walked and did not run.  But I did it.

Thankful to 2 little girls who motivated me in more ways than they knew.  Want to make sure you follow through on a commitment to an event?  Just tell your 9 year old about it so that she will ask you over and over and over again about doing it.  And then let her invite a friend to join you - there's no way out of it at that point.


And now the season of events is upon us.  I did a 5K this weekend.  I have a plan to do another 5K this coming weekend.  And am registered for another one the first weekend and last weekend in June.

And it feels really damn good.

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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Meal Planning: May 5

Well, I've been a slacker.  But I'm ok with that.

I was out of town for work last week.  And I haven't been able to reclaim the kichen since getting home (dishes need to be put away and then we need to wash a boatload of glasses).  We have eaten out for most every meal for 2 weeks.

My waist line shows it.  I miss my juice and my veggies and fruits.

It's easy to see how quickly we can slide.

But I have to get back to it.  Meal planning.  Healthier eating. Exercise.

It isn't very detailed.  But it's at least a start.

After completing our grocery shopping, some adjsutments have been made.  BBQ meatballs are tonight.  And there will be a pasta night and a mexican night.  It's ok - having a plan doesn't mean I can't be flexible!

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Thursday, May 1, 2014

Unexpected Motivation #13HealthExpo

I recently had the opportunity to attend a health expo put on by a local TV channel (WTHR).

I wasn't sure what to expect.  Part of me thought it would be a bunch of elderly people there to get cholesterol screenings and blood pressure tests.  Part of me thought it would be lots of medical practices.

Instead, it was a REALLY fun event for me and my 9 year old daughter.  This event would have been fun and informational by myself, with a few friends, or with my family.  I am already eagerly awaiting the event next year.

Teagan and I got to report the weather, do a head to head obstacle course competition, learn all about healthy eating and dental care and avoiding sugary drinks.  We met Rowdie (mascot for the Indianapolis Indians), participated in a gymnastics and track and field sampler, were enthralled by a trampoline demo, and collected lots of bags, medals, pens, and lip balm.

And I had an interesting moment of realizing how much I miss being fit.  Used to be that the short obstacle course set up by the Indiana State Police wouldn't have been much of a sweat for me.  3 step ups, hop down a ladder, 3 burpees, roll a tire, carry a medicine ball, do bear crawls.  But now?  In my not in shape body?  It almost killed me.  I tried my best and I completed it.  But I was very much reminded of what my body could do just a few short years ago and how much work I need to do if I'm ever going to get back to that kind of level.  My weight doesn't matter - I want to be able to tackle a crazy little demo obstacle course without feeling like I need one of the standing by police officers have the EMT's standing by.

trampoline demo by Geist Sports Academy

green screen! Teagan doing a weather report (reading a teleprompter).

doing some gymnastics warm ups with coaches from Geist Sports Academy

She earned a medal!

Hangin' with Rowdie!
So here's the bottom line.

I need to exercise. More.  A lot more.

I need to get more serious about my health - specifically in terms of routine visits to the dentist and the gynecologist.  I've totally slacked in the last 1-2 years.

Next year, I want to OWN that obstacle course.  Like a boss.

How about you?  What will it take to get you or keep you motivated?

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