This week Brenda asked us to "Pick an area of your home or life related to your fitness goals and give us a tour. Let us know what's working for you in this space and what's not working. What dreams do you have for this area of your life?"

I picked my work areas for the tour. I have an outdoor area and an indoor area, and since it's such a beautiful day today, let's start outdoors.

There's a little path leading directly from the parking lot to the bike trail, so we won't have any traffic to contend with, or anything like that. And as you can see from the picture, the path is quite lovely, so I am without excuse for not using it more consistently.

When I first moved here I would walk about two miles on it at least four or five times a week, listening to books on tape as I walked, which was a double blessing because I've always loved to read, but rarely have time to sit down with a book. This week I started walking again, and am hoping to keep it up from here on out.

Let's go inside now to my indoor fitness area, which is the carpet in front of my TV. If you want to see what the actual room looks like, just pop over to my Clean Home Carnival post where I gave it a bit of a makeover..

The picture on the left shows my videos and "equipment," as well as the door of my clothes closet. Nothing very fancy, as you can see. I use that door to do wall push-ups against. I try to do 100 wall push-ups three times a week, and lately I have been pretty consistent about that.

I also use the door to do resistance exercises, using a piece of tubing (that green thing you see dangling there in the top left corner of the picture). I close the door on it to hold it in place, and then I can do things like rowing or arm extensions (as in the picture to your left).

The white pole is actually a plastic broom handle that I use to do stretches that strengthen my shoulder and upper back muscles, as in the picture to your right. (That's not me in the picture though. LOL)

My main indoor workout consists of a routine from either the Sweatin' to the Oldies exercise video which, by the way, really does make me sweat, or from one of the DVDs, and I try to alternate between them for variety. Sad to say, this is another area where I have become totally inconsistent.
My goal is to do one of these workouts at least three times a week. This week I picked the Weight Watchers Walk at Home DVD, and so far so good.

If money were no object, I would love to have a Wii. That may not be my greatest need these days, but it is still at the top of my wish list. I would love to have a Wii with Wii Sports and Wii Fit.

My dream is be to be so commited to regular exercise that it becomes second nature, and as a result, I am fit, trim, full of energy, and look good in my clothes.

P.S. Hope you have enjoyed my tour, and if you're having trouble seeing the details in any of the pictures, just double click on them and they will be enlarged.



"For since the creation of the
world His invisible attributes
are clearly seen, being
understood by the things
that are made..."
(Romans 1:20)



This is a P.S. to yesterday's Fitness Friday post. I was so down in the doldrums that I totally misunderstood the assignment, which was supposed to be to post something on what awesomeness makes us think of. So here, in no particular order, is my list as I see it today.
  • Awesomeness is knowing that each day can be a new beginning, and that I woke up feeling I really had been ejected out of that groove I wrote about being stuck in.

  • Awesomeness was waking up at 5:30 this morning, raring to go, even though I had only gotten about four hours sleep last night.

  • Awesomeness was a day of normal sized portions of healthy foods, and nothing sugary except for a handful of jelly beans. (And that was the last of them, so they won't be a temptation anymore.)

  • Awesomeness was taking a walk on our beautiful bike path for the first time in ages, and actually working up a sweat because of all the water I've been drinking.

  • Awesomeness has been meeting all of you in our Fitness Friday group, and knowing we're traveling this path together.

  • Awesomeness is knowing that there are not one, but two groups providing encouragement along the way. My FF buddies in this physical realm, and the large crowd of witnesses in the heavenly realm cheering me on as they watch me run my race (Hebrews 12:102).

  • Awesomeness is knowing I am a child of the Living God, a divine original, created for a special purpose that no one else can fulfill (Ephesians 2:10)

  • Awesomeness is knowing that the Creator of the universe has my name engraved on the palm of His hand, saves my tears in a vial, and rejoices over me with singing (Isaiah 49:16, Psalm 56:8, Zephaniah 3:17)

  • Awesomeness is knowing that I am loved unconditionally by my Heavenly Father, and that He never gives up on me. His mercies are new every morning, and great is His fathfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23).

Oh my word, I'm on a roll and could go on and on, but this seems like a good place to stop.

Since I already posted my original assignment early this morning, I'm not expecting anyone to go back and read this afterthought, but it sure felt AWESOME being able to write it.



"Two are better than one, Because they have a
good reward for their labor. For if they fall,
one will lift up his companion. But woe to
him who is alone when he falls. For he has
no one to help him up." - (Ecc. 4:9-10)

This week Brenda asked us to pick a theme for our post. I picked accountability, because last week Luanne of I'm hungry for something left me a comment suggesting we hold each other accountable, and I took her up on it, and that's what kept me from throwing in the towel.

Each time I wanted to give up, I thought of Luanne and drank some more water, or did a little exercise. Not a whole lot, but just enough to be able to say I did some. And I went to her blog and read some of her posts, which are full of wonderful insights. She is one very inspiring young lady.

Anyway, Brenda, for sure I was not one of those folks you "knew" were doing AWESOME this week. Quite the contrary. It has been a week of one frustration after another, and feeling totally out of control. And yet I know that's not really an excuse. We always manage to find time for the things we really want to do, and so whether I like it or not, I must admit I've been saying yes to the wrong things.

What makes the whole experience even more frustrating is the realization that I wrote a similar post weeks ago when I first joined FF, and here I am like a broken record, spinning round and round with the needle stuck in the same groove. What is wrong with me? How am I going to get out of this rut?

Tomorrow is a new day, and for the bazillioneth time I'm going to pick myself up, dust myself off and start all over again. Dear Lord, please show me how to make it work this time. Please let today be the last time around that same track.



About a year or so ago I wrote a post about reconnecting with the past. I wrote about how a chance Google search led me to a book that led me to it's author who led me to a cousin I had never met and who was living on the other side of the world. We connected via e-mail, and did a lot of catching up over the Internet. But the best was yet to come.

My cousin decided to take a trip across the ocean, and her last stop before flying home was in a town that just happened to be near my son. So not only did we get to meet face to face, but she also got to meet my children, most of my grandhcildren, and even one of the great-grands. It was a touching reunion, and I hope she flies home feeling the warmth of family, after so many years of being alone.


Thank you, Mimi, for these wonderful cards I found in my mailbox today. They are so pretty, I'm almost tempted to frame and keep them instead of giving them away. What a talented lady you are.

P.S. For those of you who are wondering what this is all about, you can check out Mimi's Just Some Smiles post on her Screaming Mimi blog. I was one of the lucky recipients of her generous offer.



Over the weekend I got to see a YouTube video clip of Susan Boyle, an unemployed, middle-aged Scottish lady, singing "I've Got a Dream" on the Britain's Got Talent show. People were discounting her before she even got started. You could see it in their faces, judges and audience alike. But when she opened her mouth, oh my word! Talk about emotional, inspirational, uplifting, and lessons to be learned. Don't judge a book by it's cover, and it's never too late for a dream to come true.

I so wanted to embed the clip in this post, but Youtube has disabled the embed feature. Not to worry, though. You can view it by clicking on this link. Enjoy!



After taking a break for a while, Fitness Friday is starting up again. Brenda has asked us to introduce ourselves for the benefit of new folks, and to briefly state why we are joining/rejoining.

I am Great-Granny Grandma (a.k.a. Sandy), and as you can probably tell by my name, the most senior member of the group.

As for why I'm rejoining, to say my pants won't zip up would be an understatement. Even though by some unexplainable miracle of mercy and grace I have not gained any pounds since my last post, there is such a large V, it would be impossible to even try to bridge that gap. All I can fit into at this point are my sweats, and a new pair of black pants I broke down and bought to wear to church on Easter Sunday. I know, I know, I know, I can't keep doing what I'm doing and still expect to lose inches or weight.

I'm still allowing myself to be mastered by my flesh instead of the other way around. I know what I need to be doing/not doing but I'm not being consistent. Dear Lord, please help me to have the willingness, commitment, and discipline to fight this battle head on instead of always finding excuses--especially when it comes to exercise. My spirit is so willing, but my flesh is weak. Please help me remember that my body is the temple of your Holy Spirit, and for me to not care for it as I ought is like the sin of rebelliousness.

And now to answer Brenda's last question--"Rank the following in importance to you"--these are my priorities:

  • Exercise, exercise, exercise. There is a bike trail/walking path right outside my door. It is spring, the weather is perfect, and the colors on the shrubs and trees are magnificent. And if the weather is bad, I have a variety of in-home exercise videos I can choose from. So I am totally without excuse.

  • Amend my diet by including less cookies and frozen yogurt, and more water. And no more seconds or thirds.

  • Look better, feel better, and be able to fit into my clothes. All of them!



Last week I was feeling really stressed out, and I don't know if it was the sleep deprivation or what, but I found myself questioning, among other things, why I bother to blog. I wondered whether it was all about ego, or whether what I share does make a difference to anyone. And then, as if in answer to my thoughts, bloggie friend Valerie Lynn sent me this lovely Uber Amazing Blog Award.

Thank you so much, Valerie, for encouraging me to keep on keeping on.



Several weeks ago, JulieMom invited us to a Clean Home Carnival. She challenged us to start getting our houses in order by picking one or more rooms or spaces to clean and organize, and then come back on April 1st with before and after pictures to show what we had done.

Well I had all kinds of great plans for what I would accomnplish for this great Show and Tell, but alas, I got bogged down with work (the kind that pays the bills) and was only able to focus on one room--my bedroom/office.

This room doesn't have a real partition in it, but I have accomplished that in a virtual sort of way by having the bedroom part face one wall, and the office part face another. Here are the "before" pictures of each half.

As you can see, lots of clutter. Stuff all over my bed and the floor, under the credenza, and stacked all over the top of it. And my computer desk so full of paper, it was a frustrating eyesore.

The first thing I did was wash the windows and curtains, and vacuum the blinds. Then I decided to focus on the bedroom half of the room. What to do with all these piles of stuff. Bills that needed to be paid, things that needed to be filed, magazines I had started reading, projects I was in the middle of, books and videos I had borrowed from the library, all haphazardly scattered everywhere you looked. So off I went to Costco, to scrounge up some sturdy boxes of varying sizes that could be hidden under my bed, or neatly placed in my giant walk-in closet.

My next step was to sort everything into organized piles, and put each category in a separate box. Now nothing is mixed up anymore, and I can instantly locate what I'm looking for without creating an even bigger mess trying to find it. And, I can also work on one project at a time without creating any more clutter in the process. Oh, and I almost forgot. While I was working on the bedroom cleanup, I ordered myself a new bedspread and pillow shams for a bit of a new look. It arrived just in time to be included in the "after" pictures.

Now that I could actually see my floor again, and the top of the credenza was no longer piled high, I was able to do a thorough dust and vacuum job, including underneath the bed. And in the dusting process, instead of just dumping all the papers on my computer desk someplace else and back again, I took time to put them into the binder and folders they should have been in, in the first place. Such a simple thing, and yet such a huge time saver when I'm trying to put my finger on something I need fast.

The finished product? Voila!

Thank you, JulieMom, for sparking the fire.