Write the first paragraph of a story you will never finish:
I smooth the frizz out of my hair after blow-drying and apply some mascara and lip-gloss. It’s the first day of senior year and I know most of the girls in my class probably have had their outfits planned for weeks. Not me, I would rather be comfortable then cute in my faded blue t-shirt and jeans. I look in the mirror, expecting to look different. Like being a senior magically transformed me over night. I don’t look different. I still have the same amount of freckles, if not more, covering my nose and cheeks. My thick brown hair falls straight over my shoulders and the same faded, too small for my face; green eyes stare back at me. I Jane Marie Atchison am still the same plane Jane that I was last year.
Above is the first paragraph of a story I am in the process of writing. There is a certain kind of pressure when writing. Even if no one will ever read the words written. You always desire for your writing to be good, coherent and relateable. Usually one writes what one knows and therefore, whether intentional or not, little bits and pieces of your soul splatter through your words like rain drops, slipping into the cracks on the pages. That is why this particular writing prompt caught my attention. Why do we write only to never finish? Is it because we think we aren’t good enough? Is it simply a case of writer’s block? Or is it bigger then that? When we write we become vulnerable even if the story is fiction. These words are from my brain, my imagination and I am putting them out there for anyone to see and judge. It’s scary. Maybe that’s why we write but don’t finish.
Ok, so I know its March 11th and this post is a little late. I also know that towards the end I didn’t blog much about this topic. I can give you the regular excuses, we’ve been sick, life was crazy. Yada Yada Yada. Who cares right? So let me just get to it.
Here are my results and thoughts on my little challenge. I loved it so much I’m still doing it! Honestly. Maybe not quiet as strict. I’ve had a few several glasses of wine since March 1st, but the whole working out and 0 to low carb dinners are still going strong. And I am totally rid of my coke zero habit!!! I don’t even think about them anymore! If that was all I got from this experiment that would be enough but it’s not I got so much more. Below is a list of what goals I wanted to achieve when I started the challenge VS what I actually achieved.
Eat more whole foods throughout my week and less processed junk – Check!
Eat more veggies- Check!
Kick my diet soda habit- Check!
Exercise Regularly- Check!
Increase my energy levels- Check!
More restful sleep at night- Check!
Increase water intake- Semi-Check!
Reduce bloat- Check!
Better my digestion- Check!
Tone my muscles, especially my mid-section- Semi-check!
loose 4 to 5 pounds
As you can see I was able to achieve almost every goal on my list. I have definitely cut back on processed food. I have so many new meals that have been added to the dinner rotation that are low carb and delicious. Not only did my vegetable intake increase but my husband and kids are eating more veggies too! I’m sleeping much better. And while my energy isn’t through the roof it feels way more stable then it was. And of course no more diet soda!
Okay so with all that said here is where I need improvement. Over the holidays I had gained about five pounds that I was hoping to get rid of. I only lost one pound on this “diet.” Which I found surprising because I stuck strictly to it. However I do feel stronger and more toned and who’s to stay that those five pounds won’t eventually come off. The truth is it is more about how you feel then the number on the scale. Water, I hit on average 30oz a day which is okay but I know I need more then that.
Another area that could use improvement, my food journal. I didn’t do a good job at writing down what I was eating. But I still think it’s important. Even if its just for yourself. It offers a little more accountability. Obviously it’s not something you can do everyday for the rest of your life but its a good option to consider if you are trying to hit specific goals. All in all, I felt the challenge was successful. If you are interested in trying it for yourself click here to see the guidelines I followed. You don’t have to do it in February. 😉
In the next few weeks I will try to post some of our favorite low carb dinners. Thanks for reading you guys!
Are Great Northern Beans bad you? Why? They have fiber, protein, iron. I know they are not Paleo friendly… Theses are the things I struggle with. To eat beans or not to eat beans that is the question.
Workout: 30min strength & toning session plus a 20min walk with the kids
Breakfast: Banana, Ginger and Spinach Smoothie
Snack: Protein Bar
Lunch: Cashew Chicken Salad
Dinner: White Bean, Salsa Verde Chicken Chili
Water Intake: 32oz
Thoughts: So we are just a little past the half way mark for my challenge. I’ll be honest the best part about this so far is finding out I can make low carb dinners that are easy and delicious! And not only has my veggie intake increased but my husband and kids are eating more veggies as well which is awesome! I really feel I can keep this up after this over.
You guys Sriracha Hummus is a thing and it’s SO good!!!
And yes I did take a bite out of my wrap before I took this pic.. You see I hadn’t planned on blogging about this until I tried this and realized it might just be my favorite new lunch!!!!
If you like sriracha and hummus and you live near Trader Joe’s then run there right now and get some of this right away!!!
Okay enough of my raving here is the recipe:
One 100% whole wheat tortilla
Sliced Red Pepper
1 Tsp Red wine vinegar (optional)
Pepper to taste (optional)
Lay out your tortilla and spread some hummus on one side. Arrange your turkey, spinach, sliced red pepper, cucumber and sprinkle with feta. I sprinkled about a teaspoon of red wine vinegar over every thing and added some cracked pepper before I rolled up my wrap.
That’s it! Enjoy!
Fit & Fabulous February: Day 15
Workout: 2miles on the elliptical
Breakfast: Blueberry Oatmeal
Snack: Cheese stick and roasted seaweed
Lunch: Sriracha Hummus Turkey Wrap
Snack: Greek Yogurt
Dinner: Greek Grilled Chicken Salad
Water Intake: 32oz
Thoughts: So I might totally cheated this weekend while out with friends and indulged in a milkshake and fries at like 10pm. And you know what while it tasted good going down I felt so sick afterward. Needless to say lesson learned.
What is the best thing about being either single, or partnered (whichever you are right now)?
For me the best thing about being partnered is knowing I have a teammate in this game called life. Someone I can trust and count on to lend support when I need it. Someone who I know is invested just as much as I am and is working with me to achieve the same goal. Not really the most romantic answer but it’s true. If you would have asked me this question a few months ago I would’ve probably had a different answer. Recently I discovered something about myself and my marriage. You know that famous movie line from Jerry Maguire.. no, not “Show me the money”. The other famous line, “you complete me.” Yeah, I have decided I really dislike that line. Don’t get me wrong, its a great movie moment and I used to totally swoon over those words… until I got married.
However, the more I am married the more I realize my husband does not complete me, and it’s unfair for me to put that expectation on him. If I were to do so, I feel I would be setting him up for failure. Here’s what I mean by that. In the past when I was feeling sad or lonely I would look to him to fix it. But that never really worked and then I found myself just frustrated with him. Poor guy. Then finally it hit me. It’s not his job to fix those things for me and I needed to stop looking to him to fill those voids. I needed to make an adjustment. I need to take my husband out of the role of “void filler” (that’s not really a thing but.. you know what I mean) and rather see him as my teammate. I can honestly say it’s been awesome! Since I am the same for him I started to think of qualities that make a great teammate.
They put the team before themselves
They are reliable and committed
They treat others with respect
They lend support when needed
They cheer their other teammates on
They listen and encourage
They communicate constructively
They work with others to problem solve
They celebrate the victories
They work on bettering themselves for the benefit of the team
Hahaha wow this turned really self-help like. I promise I am not trying to write a book or anything ;). Just thought I would share some of the things Ive been pondering lately.
I would love to hear your response to the writing prompt. What is the best thing about being either single, or partnered (whichever you are right now)?
OK so if you have been following my blog you know I am in the middle of a diet lifestyle adjustment. Cookies are my weakness and it probably wasn’t the smartest decision to bake a plate of temptation like this. But my 3 year old absolutely loves baking and Target had these cute heart shaped cookie cut-outs, I mean what was I supposed to do ;).
A few months ago I found the most amazing sugar cookie recipe!! here. You do not have to refrigerate the dough and she mentions a little trick so the cookies won’t loose their shape in the oven. She freezes the dough for ten minutes on the cookie sheets before putting them in the oven. I mean if that is a common trick how come no one has shared that with me? For years my cookies have been coming out of the oven three times the size they were supposed to be! Anyways,the cookies are perfectly sweet, with a hint of almond and melt in your mouth. I love them. I’m not sure I will ever do sugar cookies any other way!
For the frosting I used white chocolate melts. then dipped the cookies in the white chocolate. For the different colors just separate the melted chocolate and add food coloring. Please Note: the food coloring does make the melted chocolate thicker (don’t know why) and causes it to harden quicker. So you will need to work a little fast
And in case you were wondering yes I might of had one or two of the smaller cookies 🙂
Okay so I am a total Slacker. It’s been unexpectedly busy around here, so I haven’t had a chance to journal. But on the plus side it was 55 today which means I got to go for a run and it was glorious.
Workout: 1.5 mile run
Breakfast: Kale and Berry Smoothie
Snack: Protein Bar
Lunch: Leftover Sweet Potato and Turkey hash
Dinner: Chicken Fajitas & Chopped Cabbage Salad
Thoughts: I can honestly say for the last four days I have not felt the need to drink a Coke zero and if that is all I get from this month then it was worth it. Cookies on the other hand. Well cookies are a whole nother monster. No pun intended.
Why is it when you can’t have something, you want it the most? Yesterday I was under the weather therefore I didn’t eat much. So by 8pm I was incredibly hungry. Of Course the only thing that sounded good was a cookie. I gave in. One cookie. Not even a normal cookie, it was a “healthy” cookie with flax seed and whole oats. And yet it was like the most amazing thing I have ever tasted. And then suddenly I was overcome with the urge to eat about 10 more. I didn’t. Honestly I’m slightly amazed at my willpower! Even now as I sit here typing I am resisting the urge to go and eat another one! In fact this cookie was so good that while I was eating it I wanted to give up on this whole thing and just forget it! How could one, not even that delicious, cookie have that kind of power? I used to think I had a normal, healthy relationship with food. But now I’m finding, food has fooled me.
Thoughts: I went the whole day without eating bread or grains which was unintentional but I didn’t even notice! My energy levels were pretty good throughout the day. I didn’t feel the need to snack, so I didn’t. I still thought about the fact that I can’t have a coke zero. 😦 But all in all I would say today was a much better day! Woop, Woop.
If you would like to know more about Fit & Fabulous February, click here.
When was the last time someone truly listened to you?
I think the better question is “When was the last time someone truly heard you?” People listen to me everyday and I am sure others could say the same. As a mother my children listen to me (hopefully). As a wife my husband listens to me and I to him. Listening can be rather easy. Hearing is different. To me, hearing means understanding and maybe even connecting on an emotional level. For example, sometimes when I am in an argument with my husband it is hard for me to feel validated unless I feel I’ve been heard. Otherwise I feel as though the words I’ve spoken have meant nothing. I believe that is why you meet people who can talk & talk, have a huge circle of friends and still feel utterly alone. Or why couples who have been married for 20 years can be strangers to each other. We can listen all day but are we really hearing?
To the single mom constantly complaining about how her deadbeat ex won’t help and how frustrating it is to do everything by herself. To some it can be seen as just that, complaining, you can nod and say “I am sorry he won’t help”. Or what she might really need to hear is “Yeah raising kids is already so hard when both parents are involved, I can’t imagine doing it by yourself. I hope you know you are doing a really great job and if you need any help at all please call me.”
Honestly I don’t remember the last time I was truly heard. It was more then likely by my husband and probably after an argument. And I I know there have been times where I have felt heard by one of my friends. But it does feel few and far between sometimes. Is this because we have become way to consumed with our own lives that we forget about what others might be going through. We merely listen, maybe give an appropriate response and then move on? I’m guilty. Maybe now that I’ve dwelt on it I can change that.