July 20, 2013

4 Weeks In

Four weeks ago my husband cleaned off our dry erase board that hangs on the kitchen wall.
Four weeks ago we sat down for a long talk about finances, eating habits, and our team work.

We have gone through these phases before. Something similar to a New Years Resolution Wake-up-call. We have tried to lose weight, save money, be better stewards, or plan for a trip. We have tried all this many times.

This time nothing was different. Same goals. Same reason.

But now, it's 4 weeks later.
We made it 4 weeks !

Week #1 
This week we went back to healthy basics. No more fast food. No more Dr.Pepper. 
Our favorite food secret weapon is eMeals ! ( Thank you Jon Acuff ) We have been using eMeals off & on for out 3 years now. This time, we jumped in with both feet and signed up for a full year of meal plans!

 Instead of a Taco Bell run, my husband would bring a picnic to work !
To get off the couch we started using our Xbox Kinect instead of paying of a gym fee. Workouts during the day and 1 mile walks every evenings. Every Monday we weigh in to see the results. 

Some positive fridge art !

One of the powerful things we learned that week about healthy food habits was this:
"Cant go wrong with fruits and veggies. And look at every meal, see if there is at least one item you could switch for a fresher version." 

Week #2
The regular exercising and fresher foods increased my energy. Late one night I decided our house needed a deep cleaning. This was about the time of my ( Mid 20's crisis). I started cleaning out closets,drawers, and boxes from the garage. All of a sudden we were ready for a garage sale !

We jumped to the hustle, got an ad in the paper, and signs on town corners for a Friday and Saturday sale.  This was at the end of Day 1.

On day #2 of the sale, we had a secret weapon for sales: 

The sale was a huge hit ! We made over $500, cleaned out our lives, and created the fresh start we were looking for. It felt amazing to have more room and less to worry about ! 

 We were exhausted but it was so worth it !

Week #3
We can really feel the extra energy and clutter free living space. I started week 3 with a Pinterest project I had put on the back burner. A great display for all of our ticket stubs !

We also increased our walking to 3 miles a night and my husband is considering a signing up for 5K in September ! This week we also introduced a cleaning routine to keep us on our feet and keep our house ready for any guests and any time.

Week #4 begins Now ! 
Going into week 4 feels awesome.
I crave water and better food. We had a fast food snack on a busy day and hated it !
We love our evenings walks and arrange our plans so we don't miss it.
I sleep better. I feel better.

Like I said. We have tried this before. I think it speaks volume that we are trying to better ourselves. We are trying and that is something.

Like I said, it's been 4 weeks.
That's pretty awesome progress !


July 19, 2013

Mid 20's Crisis

Do you have a 5 year plan ? A 10 year plan ?

In job interviews I rocked that question like none other.

I'm a have-a-plan kind of girl. I thrive on a to-do list and love to spend hours day dreaming about the future. At night, when I couldn't get to sleep, I would just think of the next 5 years; What I would look like, where we would live, and what sports would my children play ?

A few weeks ago I had a melt down. Mostly in my head and in the privacy of my own home, I just melted down. My 25th birthday is fast approaching. Me...turning 25.

(If you are older than 25, you're laughing at me. If you're not laughing.. then you feel my pain. )

I broke down because as my 25th birthday approaches, I was forced to reflect on the past 25 years. I was not happy with what I saw.

I have spent the last 25 years:
  • Stressing over what-if scenarios.
  • Worrying over family drama.
  • Crying over that stress and drama
  • Living in the middle but never really present. 

For the past 25 years I have been preparing to be someone else. Everything I wore, friends I picked, activities I joined, churches I attended, jobs I took. Everything was a choice I made because that is what Future Renda would do.

Now 25 years later, I'm not that woman. I pictured a minivan with at least 2 kids, a busy schedule, and sleepless nights. Maybe a mortgage or a second car. Women's bible studies, jokes over parenting, and signing up for little league.

Instead. My husband and I are about to start our Junior year in college in another state, away from our parents, siblings, and nieces and nephews. Just the 2 of us, up here, in the middle.

I had to have a pity party for a second and then I picked myself up. I can't stop my 25th birthday from coming, but I can change the next 25 years. So I gave myself a new outlook.

I am going to live in the present. The future is forever changing and the past is done. If my body is not going to listen to my dreams, then I will work to get in the best shape I can, so that I can live as long as I can, so I can leave the biggest legacy that I can. 

Some habits, some words, some relationships, and friendships wont make it into the next 25 years of my life. But that means that is room for new, lots of new. New habits, new friendships, and new healing.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" 
-Jeremiah 29:11-13