CBAILEYC   97,064
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New Family Member... non-Spark related..

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Please allow me to introduce to you.. Zerbert!

Since Wednesday afternoon, we've been working on adopting another dog into our family. It started with an adorable French Bulldog being listed for adoption on the Humane Society's website. He was adorable, but was snatched up quickly. That was great for him, but a bit sad for us.

Yes, we have two lhasa apso girls already, Maggie and Millie.

Bill's home all day, every day, and takes good care of the girls with walks and romps and lots of snuggly naps. We just knew Buster, the Frenchie, would be right for us. Since that didn't work out, we had to decide whether we wanted to continue considering to adopt another pup or wait for a while.

We checked the Humane Society's website once more, and there he was - Zerbert! He looked like a wooleybooger! A yeti! A blonde rastafarian!

We headed back down to the HS right at opening time, and declared our intent for Zerbert. Someone else had beaten us to him, and placed a 4-hour hold on him. They were interested in adopting him for someone in Seattle, and their hold was going to expire at 11:30. It was 10:00, so the countdown was on!

We requested a meeting with him anyway, ever-hopeful things would work out for us. We met him for the first time in one of the meeting rooms, and he was a total sweetheart. We'd seen some dogs who were shy, nervous, aggressive, and timid. Zerbert won us over within moments.

He looked much bigger than his advertised 13 lbs because of his coat. He was found on Jan. 3 in a town in California, and then transferred up to OHS on Jan. 10. He'd had a cherry-eye repair, had been neutered, and had a baby tooth removed the day before, and yet he STILL was cheerful and happy to see us.

We were hooked, and knew that Zerbert was going home that day, one way or the other. Hopefully with us! We requested to be on the hold list for him - if the first person interested in him for some reason could not take him, we were up next for the opportunity.

It's 10:30 by now, so we had an hour to wait. Rather than pace around OHS, we headed home and got the girls in their harnesses. We knew they'd have to meet Zerbert, and figured a walk would help expel a bit of their high-voltage energy! Of course, if either Maggie or Millie didn't like Zerbert, we would not bring him home, but we were hopeful.

As we were finishing our walk, the time on the first hold was expiring, so I called OHS. The person with the first hold did not return to claim Zerbert, so our 24-hour hold window would start once we applied to adopt him at the office.

You can bet that was the fastest and slowest trip to OHS we've ever made LOL

We introduced the girls to the boy one at a time to give them a chance to decide how they felt about him without the chance of ganging up on him. He was still so happy and bouncy and pleasant - very well mannered for a younger boy. Maggie was the one we weren't sure would like him, but she slowly warmed up to him. Millie couldn't be bothered to pay him much attention, but when she did, she was fine with him. Once we had all three in the room together, they chased and sniffed and considered their options, and got along very well.

If we wanted him, he was all ours!

We went through the paperwork and the process, and in the end it was all worth it. We brought Zerbert home last night, and he took right to the house. He also took right to Bill. That is Daddy's boy for sure! We're working out his name still. He'll always be Zerbert, but we go back and forth between calling him Bertie and Zerbie. We'll settle on something soon, along with Nugget, Good boy, Punkin, and Mama's baby LOL

Because he'd had his noogies clipped on Thursday, we have to wait until he's healed before we can bathe him. He was soooooooooo matted though that he was uncomfortable. His eyes had been matted and caked with eyeboogies, but OHS had shaved that off mostly when they had him sedated for his procedures. His tail was heavy with mats, not to mention all the ones on his undercarriage. He was just a mess, so we opted to go ahead and cut him down as close as we could.

This is what Bill buzzed off of our new boy:

That's about a half pound of hair!

There's still some fine-tuning to do with his coat, but for now he's much more comfy, and wearing a very manly gray camouflage vest to help keep him warm without his giant woolly coat. He seems to feel so much better now that he's a nekkid boy!

I love my pack!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALING_LORI 1/23/2012 10:46AM

    Awwww... I love him! I'm sure he will be SO happy to join your pack and have such a loving home! He has got to be SO happy to be rid of all the matted fur!!! He is going to be so handsome when he fills in again! Congrats Candy! emoticon We also got a new addition at Christmas. We took in a four year old male cat named Duncan. It took him quite awhile to loosen up but he is now one happy kitty!

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GAYLEP67 1/21/2012 12:14AM

    What a cutie!! I'm completely envious. Congratulations on expanding the family, Candy.



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ENDUROVET 1/19/2012 6:36PM

    Oh he's adorable! (& my groomer has saved several pelts like that in the past, I'm sure he feels MUCH better!)

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SLEEPYDEAN 1/17/2012 6:15PM

    Awww sounds like a great addition. I love how you already have nicknames for him and everything. I'm sure he'll "earn" more of those as time goes on. emoticon

Nice to hear that the demand is high for dogs at the HS there. I'm glad you've given another animal a forever home!

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NUTTYSNOOPYFAN 1/16/2012 12:08PM

    Awwww...I totally LOVE him! And the girls are cuties as well! I hope all goes well with the pack and hey, at least he's fixed! No babies! I know, I know, the girls are probably fixed too. I hope you enjoy them immensely. You're in for lots of love and giggles with that group! I'm happy for you and Bill! emoticon Enjoy your fur babies!

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WALKAWAY 1/15/2012 5:33PM

    Congratulations on the new addition. What a cutie and how lucky he is to have such a wonderful home to go to.

If we weren't both working during the day we'd have another dog in our life. emoticon

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GAYEMC 1/15/2012 5:06PM

    What a hunk! I'm envious. When we had our 2nd Dal Maggie I knew she needed a playmate so we went to OHS where we adopted our 1st Sophie, a bichon. Reading your experience reminded me so of the day we got her. I'm so glad Zerbert got a loving home!

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KAREN42BOYS 1/15/2012 12:00PM

    Congrats, chica! The boy looks very cute and sweet.

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NEWHORIZONSR4ME 1/15/2012 12:22AM

    Ah... I do love reading about happy families. I'm glad things worked out as you hoped.

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ROBBIEMARIE 1/14/2012 11:33PM

    So very adorable and so lucky to have such a loving family to come home to!

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    wow... very very cool... and what a wonderful adventure to welcome him to the family! I envy you having not just one dog but THREE... my main squeeze is allergic - severely so - so dogs (and cats) are off limits.

Congrats on the new addition!


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WISHICOULDFLY 1/14/2012 9:23PM

    I'm sorry, but he is just TOO DAMNED ADORABLE!

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TURTLERASKIN 1/14/2012 9:17PM

    Oh my gosh, so cute! I can't believe you got that much hair off him! Congrats on the new addition to your family!

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ANNESYLVIA 1/14/2012 9:00PM

    I would have loved a second dog but Zhanne is 10 (well on January 20th). We feel we should have got a second when she was under 5 yo. However, at the time we lived in a very small house. Two grown ups, two kids and one dog was real cramped already.

I am so jealous of your pack...still I wish you and your family all the happiness and deserve it!

hugs, Anne

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KNEYRUS 1/14/2012 8:59PM

    all I can say is AWEEE. So happy you got him! Sounds like a great match all the way around.

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 1/14/2012 8:53PM

    Awww, congrats, he's so cute!

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TERRYT55 1/14/2012 8:50PM

    This blog made me smile! Your new guy is just adorable and fits perfectly with the rest of your good looking pack! Congrats on the new addition to your family.

Hubby and I have been thinking hard about getting a dog......we currently have four cats who would not be happy with a canine addition but I think we could manage it. We may have to wait a few more years until we are home more.

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LISA01605 1/14/2012 7:31PM

    So cute!! You have a lovely bunch!!

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SUSUSUZZZIE 1/14/2012 6:53PM

    Oh what a nice blog this afternoon! I'm so happy you have a new fur baby in your family and what a cutie! I love the name Zerbert and the alternatives as well. (All of our dogs always have multiple names). Have a wonderful weekend with your growing family!
emoticon emoticon

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IMIN2GENES 1/14/2012 6:24PM

    Congrats on your new addition! He is ADORABLE!

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Saturday, January 07, 2012

That's been my reaction lately for a couple of ah-ha moments.

Para-dear posted a blog lately about her foray into juicing, and the nifty re-use cup she got from Target. It reminded me that we'd picked up similar cups not long ago, complete with straws, and I'd yet to use mine. I put aside my usual waterbottle and filled up that cup, and y'know what? It's brilliant! It's cute, clear plastic with colorful flowers and fractal-like designs on it, and holds 16 oz. The straw, for whatever reason, really does make drinking easier and quicker. I'm way ahead today on my water intake - let's credit the straw!

SuSuSuzie also shared a great blog lately, and I think it's going to really effect me this year. She explained how she updated her goals, weight-wise, here on Spark, and lo! her calorie range expanded! Now, I've been proud of myself lately because I've been sticking to my own calorie range of 1250-1550. I know it may seem odd to say I'm proud but given the last several months and my over-indulgences, the fact that I'm in range is huge.

I went into my fitness settings to adjust a few things, such as number of cardio days (I'm taking a break from Zumba for a while), and found that to update my fitness settings, I had to answer that age-old Spark question - what's your goal weight, and when do you want to reach it?

I thought about Suzie's blog, and decided screw it! Saying I'm going to lose 2 lbs a week has NOT done me one lick of good the last year. I can set that as a goal, as the numbers on my plan here, as the thing to do, but if it doesn't happen, what's the point? I stated recently that I've decided I will be happy if I can release 2 1/2 lbs per month. That's not even 1 lb a week, but that's what I set my goal as. Spark calculated my goal weight - 165 - and releasing 1 lb a week - and spit out my plan. It estimated that I'll reach that goal sometime around the end of March, 2013.

That may sound like a very long time, but it's not. I don't care how long it takes, as long as I can find a way to release the lbs.

I now have a calorie range of 1560 - 1910.


That's what I was eating, roughly, when I was training for my Halfs. Yes, I proved I could eat at the lower end of the lower range, but now I have a bit more wiggle room. That isn't to say that I'll be eating at the high end of my range every day, of course. Brilliant!

Thank you, ladies, for sharing your experiences. There's no saying whether or not I would have had those moments without your blogs. Doesn't matter - learned I have, and I'm grateful.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REALLY_ROBIN 1/12/2012 6:33PM

    Spark has a high calorie range for me...and at first I had a really hard time with it. Now I realize it's about releasing those pounds slowly so they never come back. This past year with everything that has happened, showed that even during very stressful times, I can maintain that loss with no problems because I lost it slowly. Also, what we are trying to do is up our metabolism. It's not just exercise that does that, it's eating small meals consistently through the day. I don't know about you...but I'm a heck of lot happier being able to eat my new normal than feeling like I'm depriving myself or on a diet. Going over my calorie range is hardly ever a problem, unless I've purposely gone off with a vacation or a special event. It's nice not to be feeling guilty all the time! Anyway some more food for thought. I had fun working out with you last night!!!

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NETGYRL 1/11/2012 6:19PM

    Brilliant is such a great word. I am happy to hear you sounding so positive. I think it is nice to finally be past all the holiday hoo-ha. Makes it easier to get back to business, ya? /hugs

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KAREN42BOYS 1/10/2012 10:56PM

    I like this. :)

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GAYEMC 1/9/2012 6:05PM

    It's really neat the things we can learn from our Spark friends. And eating more with out guilt, how cool is that!

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    I love your ahha moments!!

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MUSTANG_SALLY2 1/9/2012 3:57PM

    I soooooo needed your blog today. My 2011 goal was 5 lbs/month. Not even close. I have been really kicking myself for not making my goal but I did get my walks in so I keep trying to point that out to myself.

Maybe I should go look at my settings and see if they need an update.

I'm excited for you! Keep going, you can do it!


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PARASELENIC 1/9/2012 3:35PM

    *sips water happily*

*giggles at the thought that it's kinda like cbailey and para are hangin' out, drinking water together*

I'm so glad that you adjusted your goals. It's crazy how much a little adjustment (a few less pounds a month) can so drastically affect your calories! And ZZZ, she's the bomb, full of super good ideas and motivation....

I hope that you do juice it a little here and there, as I would love to hear some of your recipes!



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    All I can add is .."ah ha - time to look at my settings as well" - IF I can figure out how to do it (you know I'm a non-techy type gal)

BRILLIANT emoticon - I'm so stealing this (the ultimate compliment you know!)

Spark on Candy - you inspire me, as always!


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SUSUSUZZZIE 1/7/2012 11:54PM

    Ah...I love that something I did helped you. I'm still thrilled with my new calorie range. THRILLED. It gives me so much more flexibility to exercise a little less (it was getting overwhelming) and eat more. While I love exercise to get strong and fast and feel good, love to exercise so I can eat more. It makes all of this easier. But I don't really know how it's going to work yet. I hope it works out well for both of us. IT WILL!

Good for you for changing your goals to make them work for you. It's like a big load off your shoulders! You will do awesome! Congrats!

And thank you for sharing as well. This is what makes SP so awesome. We all get to learn from each other.

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ROBBIEMARIE 1/7/2012 10:22PM

    I think we need to rename our ah-ha moments to yea-ha moments. Isn't that what they really are? Seriously, what's the rush? If you look back to 14 months ago (the amount of time until you reach your goal in the future) it doesn't really seem like it was that long ago, does it? Nope! Making it 'easier' to get to that date with more realistic plans seems so much better!

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TURTLERASKIN 1/7/2012 9:59PM

    Like you, I am so grateful for my spark pack. Their blogs about their journeys have helped me so much with mine. So I'm super glad to see this blog now -- it reinforces something I've been thinking about lately. Namely, setting an arbitrary date by which I'll be at some arbitrary weight -- when I'm pretty darn sure my body won't let the weight go that quickly -- is beyond asinine.

Once again, thank you for your message of sanity!

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    I'm so happy to see you moving forward again, Miss Candy! I love the fact that you had those a-ha moments and were willing to share. When you say the word BRILLIANT! I imagine you using an English accent, since that is a word I've heard used by the English in wonderful and creative ways. Way to go on being willing to let go of some of that hyper-egotistical BS that, regardless of our intentions, can sabotage us. I cannot tell you how many Spark friends have written blogs this week about their grand declarations at various points in their journey, and how they were convinced their new healthy habits were going to be the new norm without any challenges, and now they've had setbacks, feel like a failure, and have had to proclaim their defeat to all us Sparkers with their tail between their legs. Well honey, I'm glad you're looking ahead to positive territory and allowing yourself to not be rigid. Not saying you were rigid before; it's more like I was worried that you were gonna burn yourself out by being what seemed a little overzealous at times. I'm thrilled that you have found this BRILLIANT! idea of readjusting your goals! And hey, if you lose more than 2 1/2 lbs. a month, that will be a big reason to celebrate! Love ya honey, and I love the way you inspire others just by being real about who you are and what you experience! That genuine heart and personality isn't always easy to find in this ol' world!


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ANNESYLVIA 1/7/2012 8:44PM

    Thanks for sharing!
I am considering buying the bowls/plates that have measuring lines. This way when I don't have time or am too lazy I can just take out that bowl and fill to the line. My eyes are becoming bigger than my stomach (when eye measuring) and now my stomach is getting bigger too! LOL (or at least not smaller)

Good Luck Sweetie!

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IMIN2GENES 1/7/2012 8:36PM

    Thanks for sharing your experience and the info you've gained from others. I think I'm going to have to go tweak my settings now too. I haven't done it since I started nearly a year ago and I've been at a VERY FRUSTRATING 12 week plateau. Hmmm... I'm sensing an impending "a-ha" myself.

Good luck with the tweaking! I'm looking forward to hearing how it's going. I have total faith that you will make your goal!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HOTRODSANDY 1/7/2012 7:51PM

    Love the ah ha moments! I've been playing around with my goals today too. Think the tinkering is an important part of the process. emoticon

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APIRLRAIN888 1/7/2012 7:07PM

    Tweaking lol
Love it!!

With marathon train I have diff cals for each day
Carb loading bef long run
Running cals
Resting cals

I don't care if my tracker is body knows what it needs

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LISA01605 1/7/2012 6:58PM

    This journey is all about learning new things! Sounds like you are doing well! emoticon

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MICKEYMAX 1/7/2012 5:42PM

    your phrase - I am not there yet, but I am closer than I was yesterday....


I have seen it a couple of Sparkie places lately and I just love it. I am a big blog reader. I find so much gold in there...That's I how I stumbled across your blog, too.

Woo hoo! and good luck with all your goals! I think you're a winner! emoticon

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Thoughts from my first run of the year...

Sunday, January 01, 2012

D*mn it's windy out.

Did I just.. grrrr.. hit the wrong button. Start podcast over.


For the love of Pete, it's not cloudy out. C'mon Garmin, get with it!

Ouch! Someone had too much last night (this upon seeing a car parked on the side of the road, the driver's side headlight smashed out, glass all over the road)

This feels pretty good.


I should have worn an extra sportsbra. Ugh.

Thank goodness for these gloves. Fingers are toasty.

I should have worn my other capris. These don't stay up above my gut enough to hold Eunice in (Eunice is the jiggly icky bulge of fat above my bellybutton that has grown far too much lately).

OOoo. I like this section of music, makes me feel like I can run forever!


Downhills are good.

Crap, I can't stop running up this hill until I reach the top. That guy just came out with his dog and is looking at me. If I stop then I look like an out of shape wuss.

Made it! Pant-pant-pant.


I've got to get back to my core work. Stand up straight, no collapsing.

What the...???? HAT! D*mn wind (while chasing my hat down in the opposite direction).

Pant-pant-pant. I've really done this for 13 miles before??????????

Ok, let's run the rest of the way home.

*BEEP* (Pressing the stop button on Garmin)
2.64 miles

Take THAT b*tches!

Not every run is great, or fun. That doesn't mean it isn't worth the effort.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NETGYRL 1/11/2012 6:22PM

    pure gold. thanks for that. exactly what i need right now as i'm struggling to get back to running regularly.

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WOLFKITTY 1/7/2012 8:22PM

    For sure!

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GAYLEP67 1/6/2012 11:00PM

    Wonderfully written blog as always Candy. I LOVE that you've named the area above your belly button "Eunice"! You put a much needed smile on my face and a giggle in my heart. Thank you!

Happy New Year my friend!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon


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TERRYT55 1/4/2012 10:18AM

    What a great blog to read first thing in the morning.......I will smile all day! I had the same kind of run last night and was thinking it must have been some other woman, not me, who ran a 1/2 just one month ago.

Keep running!

Happy 2012

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    Ok I am still laughing. Wonderful blog, sorry about the headwind. I have to say that the guy being outside would have had the same affect on me!

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MUSTANG_SALLY2 1/3/2012 2:00PM

    Wow! You're mind is a bit busy. LOL I'm glad you got in your run. I tried to walk but it was windy and cold here too. We walked a little ways but then turned around and came back. My face was frozen and I was worried about puppy feet.

Sounds like you're off to a great start!


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IMIN2GENES 1/3/2012 1:52PM

    emoticon Love the inner monologue! Way to get moving girl. I can sympathize with the cold fingers... I'm finally getting appropriate cold/windy gear together.

Congrats on getting back out there!

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GAYEMC 1/2/2012 6:45PM

    LMBO! It's not always easy getting out there and just doing it, but congrats to you! Great way to start the new year! May you find joy in 2012!

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    Hey Candy,

I'm catching up on your blogs and am glad to see that you're getting your RAWRR back! Don't judge yourself by what you had last year (like the toned muscles and Eunice being smaller). Just consider it your current starting point and run with it! I think if we're honest, lots of us go through the same stuff you've been brave enough to write about. Thank you for sharing and putting yourself out there. Many people can not only relate, but can learn from what you're experiencing and writing about. Much love and success to you in the New Year! emoticon emoticon emoticon Christine

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REALLY_ROBIN 1/1/2012 10:45PM

    You rock girl! Your getting your groove back! 2012 is going to be good year...I can feel it! I ran yesterday and went for a long walk this morning! I'm actually beginning to think 5Ks for the first time ever...hmmm might have to join you Portlandias for a race just so I can meet ya! Hugs...Robin

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ANNESYLVIA 1/1/2012 7:30PM

    Fun blog! It is worth it!

I ran 4miles (non-stop) yesterday and walked additional 1.5miles. I did this with my family. DH and baby girl did not do as much but my little man, 8yo, Logan ran 5miles with just a few slow downs plus additional 1 mile of walking. DH thinks he must get a "runners high". We had to pull him off the the path and drag him. He insisted after his walked to put in another mile of two? emoticon

"Logan" Mommy, daddy and sister Sylvia all want to die now...Let's go!!!

We are all sore today even his face!

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HEALING_LORI 1/1/2012 7:19PM

You just made me smile - BIG TIME!
You're awesome!

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HOTRODSANDY 1/1/2012 6:51PM

    I love, Love LOVE this! I chuckled and smiled all the way through as I thought of my own run today!

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APIRLRAIN888 1/1/2012 6:50PM

    Thx for the lineage love reading how you guys obtain them
Great job

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ROXIT22222 1/1/2012 6:12PM

    LOL.. I just read this to the donut man. He wants to know 1) Was it windy out? and 2) how many 'shots' did you have every half mile? ;)

As for me it sounds like my run today except for the wind! (I was in southern Oregon today) I too had a point I wanted to stop but realized that some one was on the front porch 'watching'.... Oh and I forgot my gloves, and had to run back home to get them it was COLD!!!!

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LISA01605 1/1/2012 5:25PM

    Whoo-hoo! Congrats on getting out there!!

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ROBBIEMARIE 1/1/2012 5:08PM

    Love that inner dialogue! Way to get out there and start the new year in a much healthier way than whoever's car you ran by!

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SMILESRME 1/1/2012 4:39PM

    LOL!! I think I just ran with you! Your description is just spot on girlfriend! Way to go to get OUT there and GO running!! My husband and I did a Resolution 5k last night, and by golly, I was feeling the pain, the wind, the cold and has wondering how I did 13.1 miles in one race only a few months earlier!! So....let's go forward and hit the road girl!!

Running with you from Colorado,
Julia : )

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    I can hear the love in this blog... and it's been absent for awhile gal! Congrats on the first run of the year!


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GOINGBACKTO180 1/1/2012 2:02PM

    Great blog! Inspiring - I'm totally going for a run today!

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    Great blog. I love the part about the guy with the dog. I woke up to snow on the ground and almost talked myself out of exercising. Whew the old self just won't die... Glad you are well and running. I've been sooooo busy and am glad that life will be a bit more balanced with my new job. I've missed reading about your adventures! Happy New Year!

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TURTLERASKIN 1/1/2012 1:16PM

    Love this! You made me smile as I watched you run -- so glad you're still doing what you love!

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Looking forward..

Friday, December 30, 2011

As I read around various blogs from different team streams, I'm coming to realize that.. while I feel as if I'm the only one in the world who had a crappy year, lb-wise, it's just not true. I've been fortunate that as a total year, I've released lbs instead of gaining them. Just because in my estimation it wasn't enough doesn't mean I wasn't successful. I would just prefer a higher level of success, and am formulating a plan to be more-so in the coming year.

Like what?

I'd like to let go of between 2 and 2 1/2 lbs each month. That doesn't sound like a lot, but if I let go 2 1/2 lbs a month, in a year that will be 30 lbs. That is huge! I released my first 50 lbs relatively easily and quickly when I first started. The next 10-15 lbs have been a far harder struggle, and I just haven't been determined enough to grit my teeth and make it happen. I'll consider 2011 my year of learning, struggling, and figuring things out. 2012 can then shine brightly as the year I implement, more consistently, what I've learned, and make my health and fitness a priority because.. I want to.

I'd like to continue my running. I'd like to improve my form, and my pace, and my endurance. I'd like to not look like I'm dying at the end of any run, from a neighborhood jaunt to a Half. I'd like to improve my timing and my pace. I'd like this to be the year that I actually run a full mile without stopping/walking, because I've not done that yet.

I'd like to improve my nutrition. The Reboot was great, and I'm trying to vaguely incorporate some of those concepts and dishes into my regular nutrition. That's wonderful, but only if I actually establish a plan and STICK to it! Best intentions, etc. and so on...

I'm at a crossroads in my life, and instead of putting it off, it's time to make a decision and follow through with it. Being stalled leads to misery, and I'm done with misery. I'm taking control, as scary.. scary? That sounds so small. As terrifying as making the decision and changing the entire course of my life may be, it must be done.

All of these things sound manageable. All of these things are doable, in small steady increments. Rather than stressing over 'OMG I NEED TO LOSE MORE WEIGHT' I can take 30 days at a time and determine that I'm going to make the best of them for myself.

So now? Now I'm going to go pull on my running gear, and head outside. It's been too long since I've pounded the pavement, and it's time to get back to it. This uncomfortable intermission is over.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMIN2GENES 1/3/2012 1:50PM

    Onward and upward! Hope you had a nice run. We're going to kick booty in 2012!

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ROBBIEMARIE 12/31/2011 10:14PM

    I love that you are able to look back on 2011 with a learning attitude. It would be so easy to let what you think was less than perfect get you down but instead you can grow from it and formulate some great plans for 2012!

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TURTLERASKIN 12/31/2011 3:33PM

    I love how you've articulated this. I think you're going to have a grand 2012!

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ROXIT22222 12/31/2011 11:28AM

    You can do it! Baby steps. I found I do my best when the goals are activity biased. Thats why I have such high mileage goals. I have found if I make them then the weight comes off.. And if not I just feel better for doing it. You wil make great thing happen this next year!

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LISA01605 12/30/2011 8:23PM

    Excellent goals!! I'll be here to cheer you on! Hope you had a great run!

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SUSUSUZZZIE 12/30/2011 8:05PM

    You are heading out of 2011 on the right foot and it's a great way to start 2012! I hope you had a terrific run and I wish you all the best in 2012!

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ANNESYLVIA 12/30/2011 2:23PM

    Terrific! As I mention on my last comment on your last blog....Sheeee Baaaack!

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BLACKROSE_222 12/30/2011 1:54PM

    Enjoy your run! emoticon

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REALLY_ROBIN 12/30/2011 1:47PM

    I love your attitude Candy...I agree let's learn from 2011 and really shine in 2012!

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IRISHBEANERGAL 12/30/2011 1:43PM

    Sounds like a wonderful kick-start to 2012!

Can't wait to hear about your new adventures, Candy!


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AMYSNEWSPARK 12/30/2011 1:09PM

    It sounds like 2011 wasn't bad but 2012 is going to be better! Happy New Year!


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GALWAY_GIRL 12/30/2011 1:01PM

    Awesome! You and I seem to have been on the same path for 2011. It just didn't click like 2010 did. So I'm with you. 2011 will forever be known as the year of learning and 2012.... well you just better watch out cause we're gunnin' for ya!!


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KASHMIR 12/30/2011 12:44PM

    Love your positive affirmation! Enjoy that Run!!!

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Of peace and joy..

Thursday, December 29, 2011

It's time. Time to find and embrace the inner peace that I've somehow lost or misplaced.

Last night, I met with other SparkPortland team mates and we volunteered our time at the Oregon Food Bank. For me, it was a pivotal experience. It was great to meet my new friends, people Iíve been reading and responding to over the last year and a half. More than that, though, it reminded me of the fact that there is a whole huge world beyond the small tight bubble Iíve banished myself to live in lately. There were so many people, none of whom I knew, giving of themselves and their time, to help others. I was a part of something bigger, much bigger and much more important than my own self and situation. There was such simple joy in the doing, in the giving of ourselves to a greater cause. I laughed and enjoyed myself and soaked up the experience. It touched me, softened me, and helped me to realize what Iíve been missing.

See, I've felt scattered lately. All sharp edges and uncomfortable and rattled. You know because you've been kind enough to bear witness to my meager attempts to write it out. I closed off my page, made it private, thinking I'd be able to pour out this angst onto these pages and get it out of my system, but I couldn't. You can't write about what you're not certain of. Flailing about blindly doesn't do any of us any good. So I bided my time.... bid my time? I waited out the rattled feeling, waiting for that moment when I could draw a deep breath and let it out again, a bit more easily.

I think I'm there. Or here. Present.

One day last week some time, I Huddled with the SparkPortland team, wishing them peace and joy. Simple enough words, but I realized that -that- was what I was looking for. I need to find my peace again, I need to remember how to live in joy, rather than in misery.

Do I blame the holidays, and missing my dad terribly to the point of crying each day?
Do I blame it on having given up on myself lately?
Do I blame it on external forces wearing away at my determination?

Yes and no. Those are reasons, but not excuses. They all played into my state of mind over the last.. well, if I'm going to be completely honest, I've been in this place for the last 7 months or so. I regained my balance for a bit, and then toppled over again 3-4 months ago. I fought the good fight, put on the brave face, continued charging forward, but whenever I'd falter, it became harder and harder to get back up and continue on.

I guess I had to fall apart enough to finally reach the point where remaining in this state is untenable and I refuse to live a half life anymore.

Where once I had firm muscle under admittedly loose skin, now I'm just squishy and jiggly.
Where once I could climb the stairs and not be winded, now I'm breathing too hard.
Where once I cared what I ate, now I'm indiscriminately shoveling.

Where once I allowed someone else to define my worth and value, now I'm shaking off that under-estimation of me and counting myself as intelligent, capable, worthy, strong, resilient, and most importantly, at peace.

I have nothing to prove to anyone, but myself. I have nothing to hoist above my head and shout 'is this finally good enough??', I have no need to hang my head and quietly whimper 'why isn't this good enough??'.

Consider this my battle cry. Consider this me putting my body, attitude, emotional health, and my detractors on notice. I can be fiercely, quietly, peacefully determined, one step at a time, gaining back the ground I've lost lately, and striding forward purposefully.

How many ways do I need to say it? How many times do I need to RAWWR to convince no one else but myself that this.. this is the time. Itís time to lift my head, find the peace and joy I had before, and coax is along, steadily, gently. Itís time to stop punishing myself for something that is beyond my control. Itís time to stand up and be worthy once more, and find my way to live in peace and joy.

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IMIN2GENES 1/3/2012 1:47PM

    I wish you continued peace and joy throughout this year! I'm so glad to hear that you've found what was troubling you and are ready to conquer. Way to go girlfriend! I'm pretty sure I heard that RAWWR.

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GAYEMC 1/2/2012 6:39PM

    I'm just now finally catching up with some blogs. The holidays and I don't get along too well so I've kinda been hibernating other than work. Great blog my friend, I'm off to read your others.

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BLACKROSE_222 12/30/2011 11:14AM

    Darling, I love how you speak nothing but the truth. HUGS and thank you so much for giving us an update on your true feelings. I hope things get better.

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HEALING_LORI 12/30/2011 10:46AM

    Candy! You deserve so much joy and peace and happiness just for being you! You are truly a beautiful person, inside and out. To volunteer at that Food Bank and be with others with the same giving spirit must have been a touching experience. You have a special heart that deserves the best! As I've told you before, you have a special spark about you that gives me, and many, many others, a glimmer of hope, a spark, a feeling that life doesn't have to be so hard. Life will get hard sometimes, and that's just the way it'll will be for most of us, but we don't have to let that define us! We can use that negative energy to build a fire in us! Burn up all those negatives and create a beautiful spark to create positives in our lives! I truly look forward to the future, hoping that I can help you in any way find joy, peace and happiness! You can so get this back!!!!
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Happy New Year Candy!

You are a true friend!


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SUSUSUZZZIE 12/29/2011 11:11PM

    I seem to be having a lot of downs lately. I don't write about it because I often just don't know what to say and I keep trying to fake it until I make it. Anyway, your blogs show me I'm not alone and give me some hope for getting out of this.

There's nothing like a dose of helping others to give life some perspective and I'm so happy that you gave of yourself. It's wonderful to hear that you are feeling yourself turn the corner.

Wishing you all the strength and belief in yourself to make your dreams come true!

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ANNESYLVIA 12/29/2011 7:48PM

    Ahh, Sheeeeeeeeee baaaaaaaaaaack!

emoticon emoticon

Love ya, Anne

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ROBBIEMARIE 12/29/2011 7:45PM

    emoticon This is a multi purpose fairy. She comes first and foremost to give you forgiveness, the forgiveness you must allow yourself to have for losing some of your path along the way. After she provides that forgiveness she is providing you with all that inner peace that you have searched. She knows you have it deep within right next to that roaring lion. Yep that lamb does reside with the lion within. It's time to allow them to co-exist. It is a tender mutual existence but one that can indeed be nurtured and allowed to grow. I know you can allow it.

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WALKAWAY 12/29/2011 7:29PM

    Candy, I have to tell you how much your last 2 blogs have touched my heart. I've struggled more than I care to admit starting in November, each day trying to just put one foot in front of the other, thinking tomorrow would be a brighter day. But all I really wanted to do was pull the blankets over my head and cry. UGH! Slowly I feel like I'm crawling out from under that mudslide that I couldn't hold back from burying me. There's still raw edges, still moments of feeling lost but there is hope.......there's always hope.

Thanks so much for your email, it meant a great deal during a time of struggle.

Wishing you peace and joy.

emoticon emoticon


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MUSTANG_SALLY2 12/29/2011 3:59PM

    I too want my joy and peace back. I too want to roar and be fierce about taking care of myself. I even got a book out of the library, "Happiness Project", and thought it would help me. It was a good book but I never implemented it's suggestions so how could it possibly help me?

I'm glad that you are standing up for yourself. I believe you are an invaluable asset to my life and my self project. I cannot imagine not having you on my journey. I hope others will wake up to your value too.

Here's hoping for a joyful 2012 for both of us and all those we love. Keep us posted on how things are going. I'm proud of you!


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BEACHGIRL76 12/29/2011 3:18PM

    Glad to see you let it all out. It truely helps you feel better and helps others to know they are not alone too. I feel the same way sometimes. I read the other day that people fail all the time and fall "off" the wagon and that made me feel a little better. But I feel even more better when I get back up and get right back to it. Put the past in the past and move on, take time for yourself, love yourself, and take joy in the little things in life, then eventually peace will come. I know it's hard to change for good so just make small changes and eventually we'll figure out how to make this a lifestyle. It's taken me a full year just start small changes and they may be better for my health but I haven't lost weight. Next I need to step it up a notch and stick to it more on a regular basis so I can see results. Results always keep me motivated!! Good luck to you on this journey during the new year! -Jennifer

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IRISHBEANERGAL 12/29/2011 3:17PM

    As usual, you are right inside my head, with all my own insecurities and issues. I am standing proudly next to you, watching you take your own power back.

You are a force to be reckoned with, gal! And so very very worthy of all you are capable of accomplishing.

Here's to 2012 and all the wonderful things we are going to accomplish!


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REALLY_ROBIN 12/29/2011 2:47PM

    You are worthy! And you haven't gone back to where you were...that's a very distinct difference this time. We are going to fall and get caught in the mire of our demons that got us here in the first place....the important thing is you kept fighting and now you are able to set yourself free. Remember, Candy, even though there are those in your life that don't love you as they should, you have a creator who loves you more than you will ever know. Try to tap into that, feel that love, let it surround you and bring you the peace that you desire! You are worthy and so very loved! Hugs...Robin

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CRAZYDOGLADYBO 12/29/2011 2:08PM

    I hear you! I am so very proud of you! Way to go on putting yourself as a priority and figuring out what was going on with yourself.

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