Thursday, May 31, 2012

Fun Weight Loss Friday!

May 2012

May 2011
"Are you losing weight?" 

"You are starting to look to thin?"  

"How did you do it?"

 The secret is out:  I must finally admit, I HAVE spent the last year transforming my body.  Now, I am ready to share with our readers some of the methods I've used to achieve my goal.

 The disclaimer:  I do NOT claim to be any type of nutritionist or doctor.  I am only sharing small changes that have helped me.  Everyone's body is different.

1.  Shock your body

I love to exercise.  I grew up in the age of leg warmers, Richard Simmons and exercise videos.  I spent years taking step aerobics.  Running (specifically training for my half marathon last November) has been a way for me to shock my body into a new way of exercising.  Your body will plateau if you exercise the same way and with the same intensity year after year.

2.  Eat foods that decay

I commit to eat a raw fruit or vegetable with most meals (ex. spinach omelet with fresh tomato).  This helps me get my daily veggie and fruit requirement.

3.  Get yourself some muscle

The more muscle you put into your body the leaner you look.  The scale might say you haven't lost weight (muscle weighs more than fat) but trust me you are losing inches.  You will burn more calories during the day if your body is comprised of more muscle.  I love to use resistance bands instead of free weights.

4.  Eat more!

Eat smaller meals consistently throughout the day.  Portion control is key here.  A few almonds, Greek yogurt, lean protein, or even an occasional and small sweet treat helps keep your metabolism revved up during the day.

5.  Drink water

I drink about 80-100 ounces of water a day.  As a runner and athlete it is imperative to keep your muscles and body hydrated.  One additional benefit of my new water habit, clearer skin.

Now it's your turn:   What is some of your best weight loss advice? 

Email, tweet or comment on the blog and let us know.  Enjoy your weekend (Posted by Roslyn)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Rest. Restore. Reflect.

2 sisters + 2 best friends = 4 girls having the time of their life!

This past weekend was our annual ladies weekend and it proved to be one of the best one's yet.  In lieu of exchanging birthday gifts, we take a weekend, choose a location, and prepare for gut wrenching laughter, catching up on each other's lives and the consumption of scrumptious food. 

No sippy cups. No pull-ups. No Xbox.

Just three days without an agenda or plans.  Our only objective is to restore our bodies and celebrate the gift of sisterhood and friendship.

Welcome to paradise!
White sandy beaches and the audible tone of white capped waves crashing against the sea shore was the back drop of this year's retreat.  Having the freedom to awaken when I wanted instead of when I hear my three year old yells, "Mommy", was invigorating.  Even though I could sleep in, I didn't want to.  I refused to miss watching the beautiful sunrise while listening to God speak through the voice of nature.  He certainly has a way of telling you that everything will be alright when you take time to see, hear and feel His majesty.

Preparing for the perfect picture
 When I shared with my nine year old daughter that mommy was heading out of town with her aunts, she said, "Mommy, when I grow up, I'm going to take a trip with my friends".  Her words lingered with me.  I realized that she recognized it is necessary and ok to take time to rest and spend time with friends.  I was modeling a behavior that my daughter wanted to emulate.  Life is challenging and God desires for us to nurture our relationships with others.  Even though it was only three days, the time away was priceless

God is the perfect example of taking time to rest.  Since the beginning of creation he modeled a behavior that we must follow.  He established the universe in six days and then rested on the seventh day. 

Happy Memorial Day!

As we prepare for the Memorial Day holiday, take time to rest, restore, and reflect.  It's amazing what you can learn when you allow yourself just a few hours of time without television, radio and phones.  God is always speaking, are you quiet enough to hear? (Posted by Renee)

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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Filtered Wisdom

How can I pay this bill when my checking account is overdrawn?  How long should I stay in this broken marriage?  When will the baby sleep through the night?  When should I leave home and live on my own?  What age should I retire?  Should I take the risk and start this new business?  What will be the effect of my father Alzheimer's?  How many children should we have?  What classes do I register for Fall season? When will this child get completely potty trained?

Life is full of questions.  We ask them often.  We live in a world where we need to find answers.  Time seems to evaporate more quickly with each passing year.  How do we get answers?  Even after we make a decision we wonder if we made the right choice.

Be careful when you choose to ask other people for advice.  Realize that their advice is only filtered wisdom.  They will give you answers based on their own life experiences, hurt, pain, loss and triumphs.

Wisdom-the quality of having experience, knowledge and good judgement

Their was a famous and wise king named Solomon.  He beautifully wrote the book of Proverbs.  It offers great wisdom and instruction.  "It will make even the simpleminded clever" (Proverbs 1:4).  Solomon was first asked by God, "What do you want?"  

I am sure I would have responded with a new truck and more time in my day.  He simply asked to be more wise.  Solomon was young when he became king and knew their was a heavy responsibility on his life.  But God gladly gave Solomon wisdom because he didn't ask for riches or long life (I Kings 3:11-12).

I truly believe if you are in financial strain, it is not about having more money.  It is all about having more wisdom in managing what you already have.  Imagine that I gave someone one million dollars. If they lack wisdom on how to spend and invest it, they will still "blow through" the money even though they were given more.

There might be circumstances in our life that seem overwhelming.  Solomon was young and had to govern an entire nation (no easy task).  

What is the difficult question in your own life today

Seek your answer only from God.  I promise He will answer.  It might not look the way you hoped but He has a response tailor made just for you.  Quiet the distractions, stop seeking other people's filtered wisdom and you will move from being simpleminded to clever just like Solomon. (Posted by Roslyn)

Friday, May 11, 2012


"Quiet" is my 9 year old daughter's first poem.  She wrote it as part of a school assignment.  It's a beautiful use of words and I wanted to share it during Mother's Day weekend.  Enjoy and Happy Mother's Day!


Quiet is like no other sound.
One sound that can't be heard.

Quiet is like watching a ballerina dance across the floor.

Quiet is when a chick hatches or a baby takes their first step.

Quiet is a baby saying their first word.

Quiet is a flower blooming and a tree stretching to the heavens.

Quiet is a hike by Niagara Falls.

Written by H. Scott

(Posted by Renee)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

He Physically Beats Me!

I sat in a waiting room in the doctor's office on Saturday. Everyone in the "well" room waiting for the pediatrician sat glued to their cell phone.  To my right sat a couple with two beautiful children. My eyes instantly fell to their bouncing toddler. Her name was Brenda and she had the sweetest curls. Her smile made me light up inside. She was cute and chunky. Brenda was a climber and wouldn't sit still. She climbed up and down the waiting room chairs.

As more families filled the room, her father gave her a big bear hug to keep her still in his lap. She kept trying to inch away but he just grabbed her tighter. Little Brenda's fun was over in an instant. Her mom said, "Now Brenda you have to go to prison". She was referring to the way her dad forced her to sit quietly. He wanted to prove to everyone in that waiting room that he was in control of his own daughter.  Eventually, Brenda succumbed and settled down. 

The father had such an angry and sour look on his face. His eyes were blood shot red. Brenda had an accident in her diaper.  It soaked into her dad's jeans. I've never seen someone become so angry. He wanted the dirty diaper off her.  He started yelling at Brenda's mom in such a tone that shook me to my core. The mom got up to change her and the dad forcefully went after her. Grabbing her hard enough to surely leave a bruise. 

I didn't see them after the incident because they went back to see the doctor and so did I. But I can tell you that scenario has left me breathless. I can't stop thinking about that mother.  The fear I saw in her eyes. She felt defenseless and embarrassed having this man yell at her in a quiet waiting room. 

The facts: every 9 seconds a woman is abused in the US
One in three women in the world has been beaten or abused

Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury for women. STOP for a moment and look around! The women being abused are sitting or standing next to us at work. They are in our classrooms, soccer fields and churches. She is in the grocery store, in our families or she could be your own teenage daughter. 

I personally have witnessed so many teenagers in the mall being yelled, shoved and hit while in the mall with their boyfriend. This epidemic has gotten out of control. We must awaken, open our eyes and bring awareness to this problem. We close our eyes not even realizing what abuse might be happening next door, in our communities. 

Who is she? 

She's secretly crying out for help? Are you to busy to realize who she is? She is afraid of the shame, guilt and lack of concern from those she trusts so she suffers in silence. She did nothing wrong.

He will die for lack of self-control;he will be lost because of his great foolishness. 

(Proverbs 5:23 NLT)

May all abusers realize, God is clear in His word. Those who lack self-control will die. May we arise, help spread awareness and pray for each woman that is suffering in silence. (Posted by Roslyn)


Sunday, May 6, 2012

To the Graduates!

Below is a repost.  A special tribute to all the graduates in 2012:

I love this time of year when so many people are graduating.  My oldest son will complete his last year in elementary school and will soon step into the hall ways of middle school-YIKES, every mother's nightmare.

Graduation time is filled with great expectation and positive energy.  The whole world and all it has to offer is ahead of you.  The graduation ceremonies are a huge step of leaving the past behind and walking towards a new future.  This feeling of moving forward  is usually faced with anxiety and uncertainty.  You are unsure of what the future holds but you have graduated to a new place.

I believe that
 graduation should not happen only to those who are in school.  One of the biggest mistakes we can make is to think that learning stops when we leave the educational process.  We must forever be challenged to learn and grow.  Many of us are living "stagnant" lives because we won't utilize the creative and productive force inside each of us.  Some of us need to elevate our thinking. 

"I am learning all the time.  The tombstone will be my diploma."  ~Eartha Kitt

What will YOU chose to learn today? As I sit and write this blog my husband is celebrating his 40th birthday.  I remember my father always said, "You don't start living until you reach the age of 40".  Start living and learning!  Don't allow past failures to hinder the great expectation of a bright future no matter your age.

I leave you with the famous words of Dr. Suess:
    You have brains in your head.
     You have feet in your shoes.
     You can steer yourself
     any direction you choose.
     You're on your own.
     And you know what you know.
 YOU are the one who'll decide where to go.

     Will you
     Yes, you will indeed!
     (98 and
 3/4 percent guaranteed.)

-Excerpts taken from "
Oh the Places You'll Go!" (Posted by Roslyn)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Thumbs Up Blessing

Yesterday, I finally got a chance to run.  I hadn't run in over a week because South Florida was soaked with consistent rain.  In that small amount of time it felt harder than ever to push myself to run again.

As I was running a cyclist passed by, looked at me and gave me "the finger" (thumbs up).  He also yelled to me, "keep  going"!  It seems so small and insignificant.  But, with sweat pouring from every part of my body I felt a fresh wind of encouragement.  It was something so tiny but it came at just the right time.

As we head into the weekend, you try it.  Try to encourage someone in a small way.  

A thumbs up, a smile, a gentle hello, or just sincere eye contact.  You never know how meaningful it will be in that person's life.  It might come at just the right time.  Leave us a comment or tweet about your "thumbs up blessing".  Have a great weekend!