Thursday, August 27, 2015

Thursday Thirteen

I had someone ask me about these "freewrites" recently. I explained many year ago what they are, but for those of you who don't know, they are a concept I learned about while schooling my kids. They would take a pencil to paper and write whatever was on their mind for 15 minutes without any fear of correction by me. They have comical reflections on what that meant to them as kids.

It was a way to "warm up" their minds to writing on a daily basis. I learned it from Julie at She did not think of the concept, It was popularized by Peter Elbow but created by Dorothea Brande (see  

So, when I started this blog in 2004, I was immersed in anxiety about my kids being able to write. Now, they are in college and excellent writers (both being tagged by two separate instructors as the "best writers in the class"). 

So, here I am today after a full and fulfilling week in Colorado. I spent three and a half days in Aurora at a Transformational (formerly Theophostic) Prayer Ministry Conference with Ed Smith and his son, Joshua. It was great and held at a wonderful black church! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. They were so warm and loving. Rockin' time.

Then I spent  four days in Colorado Springs visiting Anne and the US Headquarters of the NAVS. What a highlight to go back to Glen Eyrie! It was great to see Rusty Rustenbach and his lovely daughter Elisa! I was her nanny 32 years ago when they first moved to Spain. Warm, warm love and memories! 

Well, I know there are many things I could say here, and I think I even had an agenda for this freewrite. Hmmm. I cannot remember what it was! Regardless, my fingers and mind have warmed up. 

I think I will go pray now. I need to process everything that You taught me, God!!!! 


Tuesday, August 18, 2015

37. Core Mat I by Power Pilates

I am officially a Certified Power Pilates Teacher! What an intense course, but I learned a ton (and had a meltdown toward the end with a take home file and practical test where I had to teach without demonstrating the movement).

It has anatomy and an amusing history of Pilates drama! 

I love this for my back, and I will be teaching three classes in the fall, two at OSU and one at Snap Fitness!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday Morning Freewrite

Ok, I realize I have a great timer right in front of me in the form of this new and exciting LifeSpan Treadmill Desk! I did most of my Skype meeting this morning with Elizabeth on my treadmill. She thought it was great that I was doing this! I got very hot though with the door closed. That won't be a problem in the winter, but it gets very warm in this room with the door closed. 

I love this thing. I have already put 1 hour 50 minutes into walking, and I have not even gone outside yet. In the past, I would do all the things I do in the morning: devotional time, prayer, answering emails, Bible Book Club, etc. sitting down and not always getting my tail out the door for an outdoor walk. Now, if I am that "lazy," I will still get some cardio in while I am getting all those things done..  WOW! 

I finished my Core Mat I training with Power Pilates. It was INTENSE! I probably did all 18 moves at least 10 times over the course of the weekend. It was fun fitness-wise. I was not sore at all, and I felt strong and uncorked in my back at the end of the weekend; but I was overwhelmed in intensity. It was so much to absorb in one weekend, and I had to unlearn things that I had learned 12  years of doing Pilates through Timberhill Athletic Club, SNAP fitness, and DVD's. I still see that there are variations on style even within the classical Pilates community. Power Pilates distinguishes between "breathing exercises" and non-breathing. The book I have had BREATH patterns for ALL the 18 core exercises, and that is how I have learned in most of the classes that I have taken. So, I need to think that through.

Power is also a lot more staccato in how they lead in their classes. So, I need to think through that because it is not very relaxing for me, and by the middle of the third day, I had a most embarrassing meltdown. I was spent too. It was a lot of pressure and not very fun for me. I went for a little walk, and God said, "You are in your comfort zone on so many things that you do." True. I have discipled women for 35 years. I have led groups for that long. I have spoken in front of many people. For many, that would be outside their comfort zone, but it is like second nature to me. So, God reminded me that the last time I had a meltdown was when I was learning to surf in Sayulita, Mexico (I wore the shirt on Saturday and had the water bottle with me the whole weekend). I had my meltdown about the third day there too. So many PHYSICAL things to remember that were being directed to me VERBALLY. I could not absorb it all (plus my equipment was not correct for me which was their fault). I had one wipe out on the waves, and I melted down. I had also been around people non-stop for three days, and I was spent. I went to my room and traded with Shel for a massage. I just cannot always absorb things so quickly and everything was coming at me so fast that I just lost it. 

But I passed the class, and I realize that I have to make my instructing my own. I am just not a STACCATO type of gal. I am pretty "come alongside you" kind of gal. I had a FIRO-B assessment consultation today for a half hour, and he said that ISFJ's are "masters of the one-on-one" and no one does it better. I LOVE one-on-one. It is where I thrive, but I think that I need to teach these OSU classes. I think they will be really good for me. I think I will do just fine leading them. I just need to get all the VERBAL details down. I already went through a whole "mock" class by myself, and I got the order all right, and I only missed one time where I forgot to say, "head and chest" up.

I want to develop a "gentle Pilates" course for OSU. I think this will be really fun to do. 

Anyway, I have just gone two minutes over my time limit. :) I really want to work on photo album journaling today and just be ALONE for the rest of the day because things will be very relational from Wednesday on! YIKES!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Monday Morning Freewrite

Well, here I go. It is 7 am, and I wish you joy, reader of this blog. Blessing upon blessing.

Well, I am on Day 4 of my treadmill desk, and all my days have had consistently higher calorie burns according to my BodyBugg. I do think that the desk could we raised more. I thought I was at a 90 degree angle. In some ways I wish I had gotten the one that automatically rises and falls, but it was a gift. So I did not pick the auto rise and fall model. I think that would have been easier than taking everything off the desk and putting it up a couple more notches. But I think that might be why I am experiencing some pull on my neck on the left side. Maybe not.

Another thing that I noticed was a blemish on the belt. I had not noticed it until the light was shining on it. It is on a part of the belt I do not walk on (the edge). So, I am thinking it happened in shipping. For this big ticket item, that is not acceptable. 

Now, I always have to have another person with me to elevate the desk. Hmm. Maybe I will exchange this one for the better one. I just think this up and down thing is going to become a big bother in the long run. I will ask them when they come to look at the belt. I would raise it right now, but there is no one awake. On the other hand, once I raise it to the correct height, it will not matter that I have the auto because I will be the primary user of this thing. Yes, definitely need it raised. I will just stop typing until people get up because I think that is the definite thing that is pulling on my back. 

On a happy note, I got all my papers purged from the file drawers with a 65% reduction in paper. Now, I am working on the chest of drawers papers, and I am almost done with that (small stack on  my kitchen desk). Then, I will look at the Women Becoming Stuff, although I purged most of that last year, and it is in a nice and neat pile in the chest of drawers. Yet, I am more ruthless in my purging these days. SO, I should look at it. 

George and the boys will do the bathroom wall in the guest bathroom (George wants to do the whole thing rather than just touch ups. For some reason, he is not keen on getting a fleck of paint and matching it even though all I talk to tell me that is very simple to do, but he can be stubborn when it comes to things like that).  George will do the bedroom wall. That leaves me with the guest room closet and drawers along with the entire kitchen. George and the kids did under the stairs with the exception of some boxes I have in there that have very old papers and Bible studies that I plan on being ruthless with!

Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against PAPER!

Well, only 10 minutes for this unedited freewrite, but I must go for a REAL walk outside!


Saturday, August 08, 2015

Saturday Morning Fifteen Freewrite

I am been up since 5 am. My tummy hurt a bit. I think I was hungry. I was so busy yesterday that I forgot to eat very much.

I barely sat yesterday, and this meant I burned just shy of 3000 calories without even a cardio workout (just Pilates and MELT which does not burn many calories). You know why?


I answered all my emails and did all my communication while walking. I did it at least three hours all together. (I was gone for M - W and was busy most of Thursday so I had a lot of catching up to do!) The only thing that I am sad about is that I noticed a blemish on the belt. It looks like it is vulnerable to tear. So, I will most likely need to get a replacement. Other than that, I wish I had done this when I first started looking at them about five years ago. Soon, I will do a video with me walking on it (maybe after I lose the 10 pounds I put on over the last 10 months).  

Well, I also had something else happen. I was walking and thought, "I bet my friend who teaches PE classes at OSU would know people interested in getting certified in Pilates!"  So I texted her to see if she knew of anyone, and she said, "NO," but she forwarded my message on to the director of PAC (Physical Activity Class). I am so excited and so GREEN! I have done Pilates for 12 years, but I have never led a class, but everyone who hears I am going to do it says, "Oh you would be so good at that." I told the director he would be taking a huge risk, but he saw from my resume (that I did on my treadmill desk BTW) that I have lots of teaching, coaching, and health motivating in my background which is very true. Plus, I know OSU! So, I am a bit excited and going to start praying that I have students with great attitudes! (Not like the bad attitudes I had among three girls in my British Literature class in 2010!)

Well, I better get on with my prayer and PURGING (paper purging is my goal today, and I only have the kitchen two drawer file left).


Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Tuesday FACED Freewrite

I wrote a whole email for my FACED accountability group, and I thought I would cut and paste it here. It is fun to just review the summer and especially JULY! 

Here is the letter:

I am going to report my food daily for you starting today.  Here is a brief update on the other things in FACE. I realize that they are always really good, but the FOOD is the main thing I need accountability in so this is a general summary, and the rest of my reports will focus on the "F" only! 

I always seem to have ACED the bottom four (GET IT?), but I FALL FLAT on my FACE with FOOD!

A(cademic): Reading daily. On track for my 52 books in 52 weeks. I am reading lots of anatomy, pain management, and Pilates stuff. May go back to school for a Personal Training Diploma (more than just a certification with hands-on experience in a club setting with a personal trainer mentoring me) so I am trying to get ready for school Mon-Thurs 9:30 – 2:30 from October to March. Also going to a four day listening prayer conference in Colorado and then on to Glen Eyrie for another three days to have a refresher for my counseling practice. J

C(ommunion with God and people): Daily SLOW time (Stop, Listen, Obey, Worship). Trying to “Walk for the World” in August and forgot to Sunday and Monday. Also finishing a Revelation study I started maybe 10 years ago (four parts and very long so stopped at part three)? Meeting with girls every other week for prayer and crafts.

E(xercise): Lots of body work as I prepare for the Pilates certification on August 14-16. I am also doing MELT (please google – it is PHENOMENAL and left me with ZERO pain anywhere in my body). Also doing Foundation Training (great for your core – google). I have not done as much cardio because of a sprained ankle and all the body work I am doing, but I am trying to get to more this month as I gained a little in July.

D(aily care of family and self): LOTS of “Hearth and Home” for July – new carpet for living room and hallway, painted living room and hung new pictures, rearranged furniture, stripped wall paper and painted boys’ room (I have directed this for my kids rather than me doing the labor, and they have had a blast together doing it), painted bathroom ceilings and skylights because of mold, finished my 25 year Christmas album (just need to journal in it, but that will be very quick since I was only two Christmases behind), got all our European Grand Tour pictures into one album, but I still need to journal them in August, decluttered my closet so year round clothes all fit in there (rather than having to change in and out in Fall and Summer), decluttered most of my file drawers (one file drawer full left) and moved the file drawer to a perfectly fitting alcove that had a chest of drawers full of unusable cassette tapes and old videos. My son is transferring the videos to digital, and I am throwing away the cassette tapes with abandon! Rearranged the furniture in the office and installed a TREADMILL DESK (I had saved money for our 25th anniversary, but we ended up having a very cheap four day vacation with free lodging for half of it so I used the extra to buy this that will help my back and my waistline!). I am going to move my counseling room down to the guest room and taking out the double bed futon there and installing a fold up single bed futon that can be neatly stored under desk. I need to think about comfortable counseling chairs down there (I think I do have one already that Michael is using for the summer. (Oh, I also have a little side table because I don’t have a place for the counselees to put their tea, and now I do. Oh joy!). I also am moving all the boys' albums into their bedroom to do with what they choose. This will free up one of the half book cases in the guest room. Oh, I also got a bedspread for our bedroom after FOUR YEARS of not having one (just threw a queen sized comforter down there). I also used a tapestry that would no longer go over the mantle and had been in the closet for three years over our bed, and it matched perfectly! Why did I not think of this before? I also did a photo wall collage next to the tapestry of our family. LOOKS BEAUTIFUL! I am so happy with all the decorative changes we made in July, but it was a BUSY month!

I still need to:
1) Journal in all albums (including the last of the kids’ albums that I am committed to doing until Paul is 21)
2) Declutter the chest of drawers
3) Go through all CD’s and DVD’s and toss
4) Direct going through all VHS tapes for Michael to transfer
5) Declutter kitchen stuff and get all kitchen stuff in the kitchen versus some in the garage and some upstairs
6) Declutter pantry
7) Go through chests of drawer in office and use that for space
8) Declutter papers in file drawer in kitchen and make that the “Current stuff” filing while making the one in the office for old tax stuff and the guest room for archival stuff. Still thinking through the paper stuff as that decluttering book says to toss EVERYTHING!
9) Go through the mementos drawer, action packers full of my grandparents and parents stuff and be ruthless about pictures and stuff that seems valuable but means nothing to me (That will be the hardest thing).
10) Go through bathrooms and toss old medicines and make up (I did this not too long ago so it should not be TOO hard).
11) Touch up wall paint in guest bathroom
12) Paint one wall in the master bedroom
13) Declutter papers in the remaining one drawer in the metal filing cabinet. I think I will have cut all the papers in HALF in the two we have done so far!!

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Sunday Morning Fifteen Minute Freewrite

Perfect time to let my fingers do the walking across the computer keyboard. I love that it is 6:15 am. It is a nice even number to start typing until 6:30. 

I had a lovely time at the coast hearing stories of three other lovely women. Good time. I need time with like-hearted peers. Someday, I would love to have like-hearted peers who also have the same outward focus interest. These three have a heart for prayer and are ministering to people, and that is really good.  They are all relatively healthy too. This is something I realize I need. I am sad to say that some of my long-time friends just are not getting healthier, and I am going to just be "the friend who stands by," but a part of me realizes that I need to move on to friends who are also a bit healthier so that I have some measure of mutual support. That is healthy for me. So, this weekend was a good investment (and cheap as another friend donated her house, and we ate inside the whole time because I brought so much food for Friday dinner that we could have it for lunch the next day).  

We told our stories, and it is so good to review God's goodness in our lives. I see how much God has preserved me by His great goodness, and I give all glory to Him.

You know, I am feeling that I should get to know Bond a bit better so maybe I will see if she wants to get together some time in the next couple of weeks. That will be really good. 

Well, I had a SLOW time with God (Stop, Listen, Obey, Worship), and He has such a wonderful sense of humor because August is to be a month of "P" activities:

Physical Health (weight, strengthening)
Pilates (get training to be an instructor)
Personal Training (explore my options)
Pain Management (MELT)
Precept upon Precept Bible Study
Peacemaking (waiting on Him for this one)
Paper Purge (this should be further up the list)
Paul (launch him with prayer and love)
Precious Remedies books

My back is doing really well. I sat a lot this weekend, and I have to say that I just did some proper sitting and foot fascia release and MELT roller (when I got home), and I have no feeling of pain from sitting so much. There is something about this MELT and Foundation Training, and Gokhale Method sitting and Pilates. I am doing so well!

I woke up at 2:30 am and forced myself to go back to sleep but got up at about 3:50 am. It has been great to have the morning for praying and thinking through some things (in addition to answering the "connector questions" I get on a daily basis). 

Well, my time is nearly up, and there are many more things I would like to do today. I will walk for the world before church. 


Tuesday Ten Minute Freewrite

I am going to go great guns for 10 minutes on this freewrite. I am meeting with a person (not sure if she wants direction - she just wanted ...