Never Underestimate the Power of Almond Flour

Never Underestimate the Power of Almond Flour

Yesterday I enjoyed an afternoon snack of almond butter on a slice of coconut bread.  As I was nibbling on my healthy creation I realized that some alien must have taken over my body.  In just 4 weeks I have completely changed my eating habits and I am not hating it or dreading every meal.  I know…it’s a surprise to me too!  Sure, I wrote a whole book that is selling in bookstores all over the country, but that pales in comparison with how hard it was to eliminate sugar (including fruit or any other sweet thing) for an entire month.

Hi.  I’m Lisa and I’m a sugar addict. {Hi Lisa!}

Plus, since April 16th, in addition to sugars, I have also been off of all grains, starchy veggies, dairy and basically anything with a flavor other than bitter.  I’ve eaten things like spinach soup (which made me feel like Popeye), more asparagus, kale, cauliflower, green beans and broccoli than I care to measure.  I got to have 2 eggs each day and you have NO IDEA how much I looked forward to those!  Plus I could eat a small amount of avocado, which in my opinion, was sent straight from heaven.  But then, what to eat it with?  Lettuce?  Mmmmm.

I’ve been aiming at getting rid of the candida (aka yeast) in my body.  And let me tell you….I can FEEL the difference!  The fog brain, rashes, bloaty feeling and fatigue are almost gone.  Although I am still a clutz.  Some of this is just the joy of being me!  I have also noticed a huge change in my moods.  I’m not on the edge of irritability anymore.  That has been my family’s favorite outcome of my new eating habits.  Myself, I am enjoying feeling better.  Oh, and I have lost a few pounds, but honestly that has not been my focus at all.  It’s just stevia-sweetened, dairy-free icing on the grain-free cake!

This diet started with a 7-day cleanse, then you move on to phase 2 which is a little more lenient (but just a LITTLE).  The cleanse phase is meant to really flush out the yeast and now that I have done it, I am onto a gentler approach which lets me have a bit more variety.

Yesterday, as my first day of the second phase, I got to add things like lean meat, nuts and yogurt back to my diet and believe me….I have been pretty excited about it.  I never knew that I could get so exuberant over almonds and chicken, but you should have seen me bound out of bed and rush to the kitchen for something besides eggs….I almost knocked down a few children.  I can now have more protein and vegetables, plus small amounts of nuts, seeds and coconut.  In fact, I spent some time over the weekend experimenting in the kitchen with flours made from these and getting my heart set on that yummy coconut bread with almond butter I told you about.


Believe me, it took me this entire month to get into that head space where I like this food.  I love me some junk food and chocolate anything.  The very idea that I would look forward to sugar-free-grain-free-dairy-free pastry makes me hardly recognize myself.  But feeling so much better has me actually looking forward to it.

Now, you should know that I am pretty much the worst in the kitchen.  I never get anything to turn out the way they promise in a recipe.  I can’t even get a boxed cake mix to turn out right.  So I am not the girl to be making alternative foods.  If my white flour bread turns out like bricks, you imagine what my coconut flour stevia bread would be like!

I want you to know how bad I am at cooking because I made some crackers that turned out great!  It’s solid proof that anyone can make these.  They were easy and yummy and I can see a LOT of uses for them.  I admit they aren’t cheap to make.  They require almond flour, which is expensive.  But I got mine at Costco and it’s still cheaper than buying gluten-free crackers and it has the added benefit of knowing exactly what’s in them!  (plus I also can’t have rice which is what most GF crackers are made of)

You can find the cracker recipe HERE at Elana’s Pantry (she has a ton of great recipes!).  I didn’t put the pepper in mine like she did, but I added some garlic powder instead.  I’m gonna try adding some essential oils next time like rosemary, ginger or maybe orange with cinnamon.  These crackers have the consistency of shortbread but don’t have much flavor which makes them perfect for going salty OR sweet.  A little cinnamon cracker with some almond butter on top sounds yummy!


In addition to these I made coconut bread that didn’t turn out as cute to look at, but it tasted pretty good.  It was very dense and crumbly, but was less crumbly on day 2, which is a hopeful sign.  Maybe it just needed to sit for a while.  It’s definitely nice to have something bready to eat.  I toasted a piece with a little butter which made it crunchier.  Just one small slice is satisfying.  I’m going to slice it up and freeze it for the weeks ahead.

In fact, I am going on vacation soon and need to find healthy snacks that will be easy for travel.  I think the crackers will be perfect!  Since most of my veggies require cooking and/or refrigeration I won’t be able to take those with me (I am flying and won’t have a fridge in my hotel room).  So I will have to just do the best I can in getting plenty of vegetables.  I’m not going to stress about it, but I am going to work to try a few more travel-friendly healthy snacks.

There are 2 other things (besides weird snacks) that have gotten me through this month of change.  God and my essential oils.  In that order.

This is not something I could ever do on my own.  I have been looking to God to give me the strength.  So each time I have felt the need to eat something that’s not on my diet, I ask Him, “Lord, please show me what it is in me that is craving sugar/wheat/etc right now.  Fill that empty space with your Holy Spirit and show me how to satisfy that desire with your love.”  I think of it as glorifying Him and honoring His promise that I am extremely valuable.  I don’t want to make this past month sound like it’s been easy, but it has been fulfilling in unexpected ways and I know He is giving me the strength!

Second, I’ve been leaning on my essential oils to help me through, as I get used to the new Lisa who doesn’t eat sugar or grains.

Here are some ways I have used oils for the past month:
– put a few drops of Slique in my water to make it taste great and to help with cravings
– use any citrus oil in the diffuser to boost my mood and cheer me up
– Melaleuca and oregano on the bottom of my feet to support my body as I flush out the yeast
– Joy and bergamot on my wrists and behind my ears to help encourage good moods
– Life 5 and Essentialzyme are the Young Living supplements I have added since making these diet changes

Of course, I use other oils daily and as needed.  I wish I could have you all over to just sit and talk about how we use the oils here…it’s been incredible for our family!  If you’ve been thinking of trying them, click HERE to get your kit and I’ll send you some extra fun goodies including a terrific starter guide!!!

I’d love for you to join me and we can take back our health together!

This week I will be trying a few other new recipes and I’ll let you know how it goes.  It may sound crazy, but I am hoping to keep it pretty simple and not be spending all of my time in the kitchen.  I don’t love cooking, but I can see that I am going to have to find a new rhythm to my food prep.  That’s OK.  If anyone can find shortcuts it will be ME!

Have a wonderfully healthy week!

Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram where I share more of my food adventures!

How About a Nice Hawaiian Punch?!

How About a Nice Hawaiian Punch?!

Lately I’ve been having 70s flashbacks.  My mind just rushes to the days of “The Sony and Cher Show”, Shaun Cassidy (swoon) and Love’s Baby Soft perfume.  In my youth I read Tiger Beat and ate TV dinners from metal trays, played record albums and wore bell bottom jeans with patriotic stars all over them.  Yep, those were the days.


And the MUSIC!  I wonder how many times I listened to Elton John sing “Philadelphia Freedom.”  It has to be 1000.  I can close my eyes and go right back to sitting in my bedroom with the yellow drapes, with an enormous pair of headphones on, lifting the needle on the record player to hear that one song over and over while I stared at my Donny Osmond poster.


I wonder what my kids will reflect on in 40 years.  Taylor Swift, earbuds, ipods, gluten-free food, cars that actually touched the ground….. “I remember when Mom had this thing called a BLOG….”

I’m not really sure why the 70s have been at the front of my mind lately, unless it’s my change in diet.  Diet changes do make me nostalgic for some reason.  Perhaps it’s because I miss the days when I could eat a Snickers bar and “smoke” an entire pack of candy cigarettes without gaining weight (don’t worry kids, smoking wasn’t bad in the 70s).  Anyway, no more of that for me….I am off of sugar, no dairy, and I quit candy cigarettes cold turkey in the early 80s.  I actually had a dream about processed foods last night.  It’s not easy to change habits that date back to 1972.  Nothing would comfort me more than a reheated piece of frozen Salisbury steak with a triangle of artificial mashed potatoes right about now.


Sadly, I have gained some of my weight back from my big diet change a couple of years ago.  I was doing so great, cruising along, being healthy, then I hit some snags and before I knew it, I had fallen completely off the old wagon.  I let it get out of control and here I am right back to being overweight and ready for a change.

At first I felt ashamed of gaining some of the weight back.  I didn’t want to be seen and would get anxious about it before I spoke at a conference or woman’s group.  But then I thought, “Why?!  It’s something I struggle with.  Everyone struggles in some area.  This is who I am and I have nothing to be ashamed of!”  That was the end of that. #nomoreshame #nohashtagsinthe70s

For the past 10 days I have been eating clean again and this week I will be doing a cleanse.  I don’t like cleanses, but I know it’s necessary for me to clear all of the toxins and get a fresh start.  I’m just waiting for some supplements to arrive in the mail so I can get the cleanse behind me.  I am actually looking forward to it (not the cleanse so much as healthy eating again).  Making the effort to take good care of myself impacts so many areas of my life and my family.  I am nicer, I am a better mom, a better wife,  and when I show my kids that I am worth the effort then they will know that THEY are valuable too!

Maybe I should get some new posters for my bedroom to inspire me.  Instead of Donny, how about Marie?!  She’s done a great job of getting in shape and staying that way.


And instead of Hawaiian Punch or Fresca to drink, I will be sipping plenty of water AND a cleansing drink made with water, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar and lemon….can you say “yum” boys and girls?!  And no VitaMaster cellulite machine where you strap a belt around you and shake the cellulite out (I am not kidding….they had these at gyms everywhere and I tried it more than once and you itched like crazy when it stopped!) I will actually move by walking in the mornings and doing my TTapp again.


It’s a new day my friends, and we all can use a fresh start now and then.  I’m getting mine by dumping my junk food and making healthy choices, and of course incorporating my Young Living oils and supplements!  My apologies if you didn’t enjoy my little walk down memory lane.  If it matters, I actually do remember every single one of these things so clearly it’s like it was yesterday.  But we are changing our focus, right?! We’re gonna look to the future and make it even BETTER!

But before we leave the 70s completely, here I am in 1971.  It looks so much like my youngest!


Thanks for stopping by!  Hop over to Facebook to continue the conversation!

Let’s Have a Cleanse Party!

Let’s Have a Cleanse Party!

Well my big week of driving kids all over the place is behind me.  I am not sure how I survived it except to say that I ate my way through the week, gaining 3# and wondering how other moms do it all year long.

I have 3 days to lose that weight before Thursday when I will be heading to Utah for a Young Living retreat where I will likely gain it back.  That’s OK, next week I plan to start a month of personal boot camp to lose the weight I have gained lately.  It’s just life I suppose…the scale goes up and down.  Life.

But I am needing to get my head back in the game of taking better care of myself and July is going to be my month.

So in addition to losing a few pounds by Thursday, I have to pack for my trip and I haven’t even given a thought to what to pack.  I have no idea what to wear for the day labeled as “business attire.”  When I think of great business attire I picture those suits that Doris Day used to wear, so fashionable and figure flattering.

A beautiful fashion

I just can’t pull that off.  Partly because I’m more of loose and comfy with red cowboy boots girl and partly because my figure is more like a Dr. Seuss character.  I will look around in some stores today to try to find something smart to wear, possibly from the Gap.

I am really looking forward to the retreat, despite the attire situation.  I will be learning more about this amazing company and these products that I adore.  They have changed my life in so many ways and not to get all cheesy, but I don’t know how I would have made it through this past year without them.  You never know what’s around the corner, my friend.  Having these oils and supplements helped me manage some tough emotional lows plus spiritual and physical trials.  That’s why I can’t shut up about them….they are amazing!

Which brings me back around to my personal boot camp next week.  Beginning next Monday, June 29, I am starting a month of clean eating.  No sugar, no junk food, lots of veggies and protein.  Then on Monday, July 6, I am going to do a 5 day cleanse that will really get my body/mind back in focus.  I did this same cleanse a few weeks ago and really liked it.  So I am going to do it again and I am hoping to get some friends to do it along with me!

Last time I did it with my friend Pattie and it was so helpful to know that she was enduring the same difficulties and feeling the same resolve.  We held each other up, made jokes and just got through it together.  She made it SO MUCH easier!

If you want to join me in this effort…..go order the Young Living 5-Day Nutritive Cleanse.  It comes with everything you need (except for a few real foods you’ll be eating).  I felt so great afterward, lost a few pounds and I noticed I wasn’t craving junk when it was over.  That was nice….plus there’s no thinking.  Just follow the recommended diet (you can Google it and find the pdf from Young Living with everything you need to know).

You can do it!  It’s only for 5 days and I am giving you 2 weeks to mentally prepare and order your products.  After it’s done, we will keep clean eating for the rest of the month as best we can (but you can just join for the cleanse if you want).

I’d love to add you to the Facebook group where we can support each other for the month!  Pattie is going to host it with me, so you’ll have both of us to cheer you on!  We will be frequently sharing other YL products that are helping us too.  But the 5-Day Nutritive Cleanse is all you need to join us!


Spend a month cleaning up your eating habits and start with a 5 day cleanse!

Leave me a comment here, on my Facebook page or ask to join the party through Facebook.  The more the merrier!  We can suffer and succeed together!

And if you are not yet a member of Young Living, now’s a great time to join!  The kit is all new and so beautiful!  Let me know if you have questions.  Click HERE to learn more and get started! (and when you join through me with the Premium Starter Kit I’ll send you a great reference book and extra goodies to help you get started!).

Have a great week!

I Got Big Thighs and I Cannot Lie

I Got Big Thighs and I Cannot Lie

I can’t hide it.  No matter what size I am, my thighs stay the same.  Large and in charge.

Last week a sweet friend shyly whispered to me, “Can I ask you something delicate?  While you were at Disney World, how did you keep your thighs from rubbing raw?”

Girl!  Do I have some tips for you!!!

Years ago I got a heat rash where my thighs touch and it took me months to get that to go away.  It was pain when I walked, pain when I sat, pain, pain, pain.  And you can’t get rid of it easily because it gets irritated anytime you move.


There’s actually a name for it.  Chub Rub.


After that nightmare I was determined to do anything I could to keep that from happening EVER AGAIN!  If you are a big thigh girl, this list is for you!

Thigh rash is the WORST!  Prevention is key!!!

1. SPANX.  If there was ever a product that deserved a poem written in its honor….it would be Spanx.  They cover what bike shorts would cover, but they don’t make you as hot on a warm summer day.  Lots of big girls say they don’t like that they make you hot, but I have never had that problem.  I love them!  But you have to know a few things before you buy.

Here are my Spanx tips….
a. Get the RIGHT size!  If you’re like me you might try to fit in a smaller size because that number on the label is depressing.  Let it go!  Get a size that really fits your body and I am telling you….you will thank me.
b. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT, get the higher power version.  Those are the kind that reach right up to your bra line and they might be great on smaller gals with flat tummies, but they are not a friend to the big girl.  Nobody likes the feeling of their underwear s-l-o-w-l-y rolling down their midsection while they are out to dinner with friends.  No thank you.  You want the Power Panties (there’s a link above).  They stop at the waist.
c. You can get an off brand called Assets Mid-Thigh Shapers. They are made by the same people who make Spanx and they are about half the price.  Now, they don’t last as long and if you’re going for support in addition to thigh protection you are better off investing in the name brand.  But if you’re like me and need some for every day, get a few of the off-brand pair too so you always have a backup (again, use the link above so you don’t get confused…there are a lot of styles!).
d. I tried one style called Assets Remarkable Results .  This pair was still comfortable (but not as comfy as the Mid-Thigh Shaper and a bit pricier) and it….ahem….really brought out the best in my behind.  I didn’t think “bootylishous” would look good on me, but it really made my skirts fall nicely.  I definitely will wear these when I am dressing up!

2. Powder.  When it gets hot, you can bet I carry powder or cornstarch in my purse.  You want to be sure you use powder made for that area of your body.  You don’t want any perfumes or toxic ingredients.  Since powder tends to come in large containers, I pour some into a small, empty McCormick spice container and carry that in my purse, or when traveling.  When I am really working to keep it away (like during extreme heat or activity) I will reapply the powder anytime I use the restroom.  It instantly cools me off.

3. Stay clean.  Let’s be real….the problem here is skin rubbing together with sweat.  Sweat is salty and irritating.  So you have to keep the rash prone area clean of that irritant.  When I am home I use a damp rag to just wipe anywhere my skin rubs together.  When I am out I like to grab a towel from the restroom dispenser and put a little water on it before going into the stall.  Then I wipe off any sweaty places, and I have lots of them…not just my thighs.  (sorry, TMI, but somebody needs to talk about it…it’s a real struggle!)

4. Jockey Skimmies Wicking Slipshort These have similar coverage as Spanx but they are very different.  They don’t offer any support (which I want….I’m not into the jiggle in my walk).  But they are cool and definitely do a nice job of protecting thigh rub.  And they have colors, which is something Spanx doesn’t have, so if you want the look of a bike short instead of looking nude under your skirt, these are good.  For only $20 I like them and will use mine when my Spanx are in the wash.  You definitely want more than one option!  And if you’re wearing jeans this might be a better option for you since the jeans already kind of hold everything nice and snug.

5. Natural Anti-chafe Balm Stick This stuff is kind of amazing.  There are several brands on the market, but I like this one because it’s all natural.  I don’t like using chemicals at all (you know about my essential oil obsession), but especially in delicate areas.  This stuff doesn’t feel slimy or messy.  It stays on for a long time and really helps with chafing.  I always use it if I know I am going to do a lot of walking!

Those are my 5 TOP ways to avoid the dreaded thigh heat rash.  If you’ve ever had this struggle then you know.  You NEVER EVER want to go through that again.

If you are traveling or active you will want to have several of these on hand.  Don’t go to Disney World or on a weekend camping/hiking trip with only one pair of Assets and a stick of balm.  Prevention is the name of the game when it comes to this problem, so stock up and be prepared.

I hope this helps and let me know if you have a different tip!  We big thigh gals have to stick together #nopunintended.

 Be sure to follow me on Facebook for more tips and encouragement!

A Not-So-Scientific Experiment

A Not-So-Scientific Experiment

I have been performing a very scientific study lately.  On myself.

It is all about SUGAR.

Now, normally they say that you need to study many different people in order to come to a true, scientific conclusion.  But I didn’t feel free to experiment on other people, that seemed, oh I don’t know, creepy.  So I will only testify as to my personal results.

You see, for the past 2 weeks I have stopped eating sugar (again).  That includes refined sugar, honey, fruit, corn syrup, etc.  Also no artificial sugars.  I only allow myself to have stevia or berries when I want something sweet and even then only occasionally.

I’ve done this many times before, quit sugar.  Then a holiday or celebration comes along and I let myself have a “treat” and within 2 weeks I am full on back to eating anything sweet I can get my hands on.

“Hi.  My name is Lisa and I’m a sugar-aholic.”

I wish it were a joke.  If I allow myself to have any sugar then I want it constantly and dream of popsicles and chocolate bars, and I don’t even like popsicles.  I’m not an expert on addictions, but I watched “The Andy Griffith Show”.  I know how Otis struggled.  I am pretty sure, based on that knowledge, that I have an addiction.

I stopped eating sugar 2 months ago because I noticed I was feeling “off”, puffy and grumpy.  Which I didn’t think much of at first because we have been having a lot of stress, but then I got a rash on both thighs that quickly turned into the stuff of nightmares.   I don’t want to spoil your next meal, so I won’t describe it.  But I knew immediately what it was.  This wasn’t my first rodeo, I’d seen this rash before.  It was candida (a fancy word for yeast).  Then it hit me….those other symptoms I’d been having recently….sluggishness, bloated feeling, memory problems, etc. were all from the candida too!  Duh! (picture me hitting myself on the head)

So I immediately jumped on it….making diet changes (misery can give you strength you didn’t know you had!).  And the FIRST thing to do is completely eliminate any sugars.  I also went crazy with supplements and essential oils to speed the process and get my body back where it needed to be.  After 3 days of diligence the rash was almost gone and I felt the fog brain start to lift.  Halleluyer!

But you have to stick with it for weeks (sometimes months) to get the candida to completely die and I was going to Disney in just 10 days.  My goal, selfishly, was to get rid of the rash before I left for my trip and deal with the rest when I got home.  Since the rash was gone, I went a little sugar crazy at Disney, eating pretty much everything my fat little heart desired.  (just keepin’ it real friends)

Yes, I gained weight, but I knew I could get it off again when I got home.  Which I did, within a week.  I came home and jumped back on my no sugar-low carb diet.  And now I am about to start week 3 of no sugar.

And here’s what happened….after only 5-6 days I started to notice changes.  Not just in my weight, but my moods, my energy level, my sleep, my skin…basically everything….changed.  I hadn’t even realized how much I was struggling until it lifted.  I found it easier to be joyful, I was less picky, felt less bloated and itchy.  I slept better and the constant craving for sugar subsided.  (not went away completely….I will probably always have that a little)

So here’s my not-so-scientific conclusion: sugar is bad for you!

What?!  We knew that already?  Oh, well then let me be another voice of truth amongst the many.  In fact, here’s a documentary that has a lot of great info (it’s long, watch it at your leisure)!

I tell you friends, while I may always crave sugar at a cellular level, my desire to eat it is getting less and less each time I go through this.  When I am eating sugar I am quick to anger, slow in thought, tired, sickly…..I don’t want that!!!  I want health and sunshine and rainbows and sugar-free lollipops!  And I don’t even like lollipops.

So this may be my turning point.  I hope, with God’s grace and mercy, I can get off of this cycle of eating sugar.  It turns out that it only took 50 years of gluttony and suffering for me to finally decide to stop doing something damaging to my body.

How much sugar do you eat?  Stop eating suggar and you won't believe how much better you feel!!!

So I’m a little slow….but I am dedicated to not eating sugar anymore.  How about you?  Is there something you need to change for your health?  I want to pray for you to find the strength!


Here is a list of what I did in addition to a clean diet (including LOTS of yogurt!) and drinking plenty of water when I realized I was dealing with candida.  I am not a doctor and this is not in any way a treatment, prevention or cure.  It is just my own experience and effort to be healthy. 

These are all Young Living products:

*Life 5 (2 capsules, 3X/day until the rash was gone then 2 caps once a day)
*Essentialzyme (1 tablet 3x/day between meals)
*Inner Defense (1 capsule 4x/day)
*Sacred Mountain (3 drops) & Ocetea (1 drop in a capsule 3x/day with V6)
*Thyromin (as directed on bottle)
*Lemongrass (1 drop) & Sacred Mountain (1 drop) mixed in my hand with a squirt of V6 then applied directly over the rash as often as needed but at least 4x/day
*2-3 drops of Lemon oil added to each glass of water

This may seem like a lot, but I was desperate and it really, really helped!  All of these supplements are wonderful whether you are dealing with a crisis or not.  I will continue to take the recommended amounts of the supplements for the rest of my life, Lord willing!

If you are interested in learning more about Young Living products, here is a list of other ways I have used them!  And I am sending all of my new May members who join with the Premium Starter Kit a great reference book and 10 roller bottles ready to use!  Come get healthy with me!

A Second Honeymoon

A Second Honeymoon

Last week was BIG for me!  James and I, for the first time since having kids over 25 years ago, went away for the week.  Just the 2 of us.  It was a second honeymoon and where did we go?  Disney World of course!

Yes, just me, James and thousands of couples with small children.

We had a wonderful time together.  We flew to Florida early last Sunday morning and had the entire day to wander around the different resorts and see what they are each like.  It was something I have always wondered about….those fancy places that I’ll never be able to afford.  We texted pictures to the kids because I was feeling pretty awkward being there without them.

I did get over that after the first day.  They were having a great time at home watching all of the movies they wanted and eating pizza.  They kept telling me to go enjoy myself.  So I did.

That first step into Magic Kingdom gave me such a thrill.  It’s so clean and cheerful, like walking into a dream.  We ran around all day and unwound amidst the crowd and lines.  I kept looking at the castle and thinking, “I can’t believe I’m here!”

On day 2 we went to Hollywood Studios (my favorite park!) and I decided to do my hair in honor of the starlets of past eras.

Fun hairstyles for Disney!

It was fun to go glam for a day!  So much fun that I went all animal kingdom the next day.

fun Disney hairstyles!

I made a crown with my hair…..It was a lot bigger in person than it looks in the photo.  I plan to mess around with more if I ever go back to Disney so I can really make a BIG hair crown!

By my last day I was in the mood to really play, so of course I did it total Disney style.  Minnie Mouse ears!!!!

fun Disney hairstyles!

The whole week we ran around like youngsters, riding rides and eating snacks and really had a grand time!

One of the things I enjoyed the most was watching the young families.  There was plenty of time while we waited in lines or on buses to just people watch.  The men especially interested me.  Young guys, in their late 20s/early 30s who were there with their wives, a few young kids and their in-laws.  I kept looking at their faces and imagining these guys who only a few years ago were in college working toward their dreams.  I thought that they must have never pictured themselves walking around Disney World lugging a stroller and wearing a t-shirt with a Mickey Mouse silhouette that said “Daddy” on it (matching the “Mommy” t-shirt his wife wore, of course!).  At first I thought these guys seemed a little defeated, as if he would rather be doing pretty much anything else.  But then I’d see it….the twinkle.  Every time he looked at his kids.  Every man.  On every bus and in every line, lit up when he looked at his little princess or pirate.

And it just warmed me inside.  I know that James and I twinkle when we look at our kids, but to see so many families really enjoying their children was such a delight.  I didn’t notice that on my last trip, probably because I was too busy staring at my own adorable crew.

On Friday night as we drove home from the airport I said to James, “Hey, I don’t think we talked about kids or money or the house falling apart even once while we were gone!”  It was like a teeny tiny miracle.  Total relaxation mixed with eating too much sugar and watching a lot of 3D shows = heaven.

And now we are planning our NEXT Mom and Dad only getaway.  Only next time we think we might want to do something a little less….um…..tiring.  Like maybe a beach somewhere that has cabana boys bringing you drinks and the waves just come to you.

I mean, it was great, but I was so worn out when we got home that I wasn’t sure if I would recover.  I’m still exhausted.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!

Getting Back on Track

Getting Back on Track

OK, it’s confession time.

Over the past month my diet plan has slowly slipped and for the past couple of weeks I have felt myself spiral out of control.  I went a year and a half doing great then I had a life crisis and felt myself falling down a rabbit hole so deep that I couldn’t find my way out.  And at the bottom was a bowl of chips and guacamole that said, “Eat Me.”

And I did.

Getting my life back on track

It started early in the month with eating sugar.  I let myself to have a few “treats” over the holidays and I instantly craved more.  And I have felt so low emotionally that I let myself eat more and more.  I noticed my mood getting worse.  I was fussy and grumpy and that led to not wanting to exercise.  So I took a shorter walk in the mornings and then a few days off here and there.

But what’s weird is then I stopped caring about other things.  My money, my sleep patterns, my time with the kids….all started to get less structured until here I am…..feeling defeated.

And that is where God steps in.  He inspires me.  He motivates me.  He reminds me that even though I fail, I can get right back up and back to where I want to be.

Get your life back on track!

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price.  So glorify God in your body.”

So I woke up this morning and took my normal, fast-paced, long walk.  I ate my no-carb breakfast and I prepped my food for the rest of the day.  I’ve set aside a time to gather my receipts from the last month and get my money in order, then clean my closet and bathroom to help me feel back to normal.  The messiness of it all weighs me down.

One thing I am not going to do is wait for three more days just because it’s almost the new year.  Why should I wait?  I need to love myself enough to do it right now.

If you’re ready to get going to a new start to wellness and self-control…..join me.  I’d love to walk side-by-side with you as we do this together.  (and let me know if you want to be added to my Facebook group for women who support each other!)

Getting not just diet and exercise back on track....but everything!  Come find support for the healthy life you want!   #gethealthy #youareworthit

1. I’m going back on my strict diet.  I really liked it once I got used to it.  I just have to get through a few hard days then I will be back on track.
2. I am going to push myself with my exercise again.  Run a little harder and do some other core strengthening workouts a few days a week.
3. I will keep my area clean.  Once I get my bathroom straight I will stop using it as a dumping ground.
4. I will keep track of my spending and stick to my budget.
5. I will drink my goal amount of water each day.
6. I will focus on spending quality time with my kids every day (not just meals and chores and school).
7. I will get back to spending at least half an hour (usually at the beginning of my morning walk) in focused prayer.
8. No more “cheats” for the next month.  No sugar.  None.
9. Sleep.  I really need to get some sleep.  So I will focus on using the essential oils that help me and I will make sleep a priority.  Even if that means sacrificing other fun things I want to do.
10. Set specific goals.  Not just “I’ll do better” but “lose 8 pounds this month” and make a plan to get there.

This Alice is going to find her way out of Wonderland and back to reality.

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Christmas Workout Playlist

Christmas Workout Playlist

This post contains affiliate links.

I can’t stop myself from sharing my favorite holiday tunes with you.  I listen to these when I am working out these days.  It’s not always about the song itself but the artist’s rendition of it that makes it fun and peppy for working out.

You can click on the links to go straight to iTunes and get them for yourself!


1. Light of Christmas by Owl City

2. Marshmallow World by Francesca Batistelli

3. Christmas This Year by Toby Mac

4. It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year by City Harbor

5. What Christmas Means to Me by Mandisa

6. Holly Jolly Christmas by Group 1 Crew

7. All Creation Sing by Fee

8. Silver Bells by Relient K

9. Christmas Talk by Byron Chambers

10. Jingle Bells by Ayiesha Woods

11. It’s Christmas by Mandisa

12. Christmas Together by Jamie Grace

(special thanks to my daughter Hope for finding all of these songs for me!)


Day 4: Do the Math

Day 4: Do the Math

Day 4: it’s right about now that I start to lose momentum in my diet challenge.  If I let myself stay hungry and don’t take good care of my body then by this point all I can think about is driving myself to the nearest Mexican restaurant and diving into a basket of warm tortilla chips.

I refuse to lose this simple battle.  I can do anything for TEN DAYS!

It’s really all about the math….


We’ve made a plan and now we need to make sure we keep a balance of dieting and living.  Our body and mind need to be fed.  Depriving yourself will only lead to failure and I am determined to set myself up for long term success.

So for the rest of this challenge, add “frequent healthy snacks” to your list of ways to succeed.


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Day 2: Make a Plan

Day 2: Make a Plan

Well, I wasn’t planning on posting about the diet challenge more than once, but then I prayed.  And you know what happens when you pray….God gives you a new plan.  As I prayed for you, I felt like I was supposed to keep sharing this so y’all won’t lose ground.


I got a lot of messages from you sharing that you want to join me in my ten day effort to get back on track, but many of you are saying things like, “This is just what I need.  I am going to be better about my eating!”

Friends, you must have a solid plan.  Without it, it’s is easy to get off track and before you know it you’ve lost the battle.


I, for example, first thing each morning go into the kitchen and make a list of everything I plan to eat that day.  I see the day as a whole, so it helps to think of my daily intake as one, spread out meal.  I do want there to be some flexibility so I am not planning the entire 10 days at once.  But having a firm plan in place each morning keeps me from blowing it on my mood or a whim.  And for me morning is when I am the most motivated, so that’s the best time.

I have a strict diet that I am following, but you should do whatever works for you.  The point here is to avoid making last minute decisions.

In addition to a daily plan, make a plan for the times when you know when you will be out.  Take your lunch when you won’t be home or explore options for healthy meals while you’re out.  I love the salads at ChickFilA and can eat one of those without dressing if I get in a pinch.

If you’re going to a Christmas party, see if you can find out what is being served or take a few veggies with you to hold you over.  If you want to let yourself have a treat, plan for that also by deciding to only eat half a serving of one thing and not have a free-for-all.

In other words….Make a PLAN.

Got it?

I’d love to hear what you are planning to help you get through the challenge!