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Dusty Ankles & Spider Secrets

Monday, May 16, 2011



I walked along a local "lake" water reservoir trail for a few miles today with NEWSGIRL2177 (Heather) and another friend. We got our ankles all dusty from the brisk pace on the (mostly unpaved) trail! It was the first time I coordinated an event where I hadn't previously been, so I was particularly proud of myself. It worked out well, we had a good time and missed the drizzle that started well after we returned to our cars. Yay!

During the walk I was all dreamy and sighing about nature, and thinking about the few childhood years I spent in Fallbrook, CA, playing in empty fields, and exploring. Heather spotted a crazy yellow & black snake by a creek we decided not to cross. (Looked like this one)

I think it was a California King Snake (Heather - that's nonvenomous, and considered harmless to humans. Hooray!) Plus I think it was deceased.

When we were taking a short break on the boat dock, we saw a Forster's Tern take a dramatic dive into the water after food! The lake was populated solely by Clark's grebes. And there were plenty of Sage Sparrow, and a couple of Great-Tailed Grackles fanning their tails near our turnaround. I wished I had brought my camera.


Feeling like such a nature-girl, I was planning my next hike and explorations, had coffee, got essentials at Target, and finally returned home. After awhile of tracking the trail on Spark Fitness, I was drying off from the shower when I pulled out half of a dead spider FROM MY EAR! It was so weird that I was a bit incredulous at first, but quickly wanted to remove anything else that was in there with minimal damage to my body.



(Okay, side-note, one of the few actual fears I have is bugs in orifices. It's what makes the harmless silverfish bug so creepifying to me.)

So with my mind racing, I asked my husband to grab a tiny flashlight and look into my ear. He thought he saw something still.. I quickly grabbed the bulb irrigator from the bathroom that I've used a million times in helping him with ear wax, and go to the kitchen to prepare water for a flush. He said, "Okay! I'm going to shower now!" But I couldn't do it myself, and he had no experience using it, so it was frustrating for us both while my panic and creep-factor was rising. We managed.



I genuinely like spiders, just not when they are ON me (or in me, eww). I needed a method to help calm myself down, and start trusting that there aren't spiders hiding in my towels, or jumping onto me in the shower, etc., or that the risk of bodily invasion is too high to enjoy another trail. I've tried all day to think of this experience differently. Like: What secrets would a spider be trying to tell me that I could apply to my life & stressors?

So far I've only got a few:
*You can always make a new web!
*Diligent work pays off!
*Good things will come your way!

It's working! Mostly. ;D
I just want to recapture that nature girl feeling...

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SECRETMUSIC 6/4/2011 8:05AM

    I lost track of you for a while (my ineptness, not yours) and was SO happy today when I saw your name pop up as I followed some friend feed activity!

I like spiders and snakes too, although they do startle me a lot when they pop out at me. I like them best when I am the approacher and not the approachee!

I enjoy very much your idea of getting the message from what is "bugging" you (sorry, couldn't resist). I do that with people all the time; I'm going to branch out now!

Thanks for a fun & ponderable blog!

Comment edited on: 6/4/2011 8:09:23 AM

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BEESPARKLE 5/29/2011 1:00PM

    Peroxide is the best thing. I live in the country and believe me. Bugs love me and spiders and Blackflies yell when I come out. Here she comes. Buffet.

Spiders are freaky.

Interesting blog but as Dawn said. She likes them.

I am not a fan of spiders. Yikes.

Continue your day then may the evening be awesome!


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Comment edited on: 5/29/2011 1:01:39 PM

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HIKINGSD 5/17/2011 1:19AM

    The walk sounds lovely. Congrats on setting it up.

Sorry to hear about the spider situation.

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ABB698 5/17/2011 12:14AM

    Ewww CREEPY Joce! Hope it's all better now and you are on the mend!

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FLOWER1967 5/16/2011 8:40PM

    EWWWWWWWWWWWWWW !!!!!! Spider in your ear !?!?!?!!? Ok...theres a good reason to listen to an Ipod while you walk !

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FIT_TERI 5/16/2011 8:13PM

    Yikes! A spider in my ear would freak me out, too....normally I don't mind them at all. I hope you get the nature girl feeling back. It's so nice to get out there and enjoy it - especially in the beautiful part of the world you're in with decent weather all year.

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CHAITEAKITTY40 5/16/2011 2:58PM

    Feeling really glad the exterminator came by our apartment today!

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VANNASMOM 5/16/2011 1:50PM

    My husband had a dead one in his ear a few years ago. I HATE spiders so upon seeing it I screamed, threw everything that was in my hands, and called my mother to come take care of it! Peroxide! You put a few drops in, it bubbles and the nasty little booger comes rolling out. I made him go to the Dr.'s to check for remnants, he said peroxide was the best thing we could have done and was also kind enough to explain exactly how common this is. I still sleep with cotton in my ears!

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DAWNWATERWOMAN 5/16/2011 12:24PM

    Hopefully you got all the spider removed and can go on with your lovely day. Glad that you had an excellent walk. Sounds like fun. I personally love spiders. The message that I would get from being whispered in my ear is NEVER GIVE UP. No matter how many times someone or something comes along and destroys the spider's web... spin spin spin, they rebuild it again. Thanks for such an interesting Blog title. It brought me to your page and you write very well. Love, Dawn emoticon emoticon

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NEWSGIRL2177 5/16/2011 12:06PM

    ohmygoshohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh!!!
! The spider thing would have had me climbing walls! I'm glad it worked out OK. Yikes.


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MOONBIRD 5/16/2011 10:52AM

    Sounds like you had a wonderful time! The spider thing is freaky! I am not normally scared of bugs or animals, but I would freak if one were on me or in me. Eek. I love nature and hiking is something I want to do more of, now that I can. :)

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/16/2011 10:23AM

    I do NOT like spiders.

I think I would especially dislike one in my ear. The only good thing I think I could take away from that scenario is knowing that it was DEAD. And having half of it still in there??? Oh God.

...then I'd wonder if there were ANY MORE in there...
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*shudder*
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The walk sounds awesome, though...


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RUSSELLORAMA 5/16/2011 10:19AM

    Okay, the spider thing is the stuff of nightmares, but I'm glad you were able to turn it into something positive!

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ZURDTA- 5/16/2011 9:12AM

    emoticon

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CAITB21 5/16/2011 9:03AM

    Haha, ew! I would be totally creeped out too, but glad you are putting a very positive spin on it! It's a totally random event that I'm sure will never happen again! Sounds like you had a great hike, keep it up :o)

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TJHIERS 5/16/2011 8:47AM

    sounds like you had a great hike, but bugs and snakes freak me out , especially if i come across them while on a walk.
glad you are doing good, keep up the good work.

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XPHOENIX 5/16/2011 8:31AM

    Awww, nice that the hike worked out so well and I admit that I chuckled with the spider bit, though... I would have a small heart attack if that happened to me. Once, I was cutting the grass and went inside to take a shower and ran my finger through my hair and there was a TICK IN my head!!!! I was freaking out and my dad was like "would you calm down, please?" so relaxed. I was like "dude, there's nothing chewing on your scalp, get this thing off of me!!!" lol So yes, I understand. Bugs are good, just when they arent ON you :) Phew. hehe

P.S. I love it that you are a nature girl :) XOXO

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RUNWITHMICHELE 5/16/2011 8:26AM

    aww that sounds like such a good time. Being a nature girl is so much fun, and kind of makes you feel like a kid again.

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SWEETZMIX 5/16/2011 7:49AM

    Glad you had a nice time minus the spider. I am not a fan of bugs at all. I would of had a heart attack, sO I am happy to see that you have a positive side to all of this.

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ZUMBAMAMA3 5/16/2011 7:13AM

    beautiful nature always recharges you, bugs not so much lol i love your blog

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BUTTERFLYROSE1 5/16/2011 3:08AM

    Good to know you worked out today (Sunday) and so did I! Miss our get togethers. I have been reading your past posts and I always feel like I can do what you do. Your - No matter WTH happens to me, attitude- inspires me. I understand the stressors of your life and marvel at how open you are. Here, in this safe environment called SPARKPEOPLE.
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Zumba Spoiled & Stress High

Thursday, May 12, 2011

I'm actively working on a couple of big things right now. But most importantly, I need to manage my stress level, and its effects. That will help make me strong enough to deal with everything else!

-There's so much to do before the month is up, and we're already at the midway point. We need to sell a lot of stuff in our apartment, maybe even furniture too, as fast as possible, but as smartly as possible so that we don't simply give away everything. The ONLY asset we have right now, and potential for extra cash, is the things we already own. It feels overwhelming, but the impending negative (disastrous) outcome would be worse.

-I talked to my husband again last night about needing him to get a job. My unemployment is about to run out. It's difficult to motivate him to take action because we will be divorcing. But it was difficult to do it before, because I always supported us. Nothing has really changed, I suppose.

-I've only tracked my food (completely) for 2 days in the past 2 weeks. Not surprisingly, I've gained/maintained weight. I need to be mindful of what I'm consuming.

-To help negate the effects of stress I need to faithfully exercise every day. Without fail, it makes me feel better.

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BASICS: Sleep, Eat, Move - Babies do it, and that's how they grow. Adequate Sleep, Mindful Eating, Joyful Movement will help me grow past this difficult point into a better place with lots more sunshine and I will find even more happiness!
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I need to muster more delight for the things I love. Some of the negative thinking, anger and frustration about the rising demands and challenges of my situation have polluted the things I once enjoyed. I am Zumba-spoiled. I've taken Master classes with Heather (NEWSGIRL2177), and we found THE MOST FUN ZUMBA CLASS EVER in Bradley's instruction. The problem is that he doesn't teach at the 24 Hour gyms anymore, so it would cost extra to take his private classes. And, frankly, everyone else pales in comparison to his super shiny awesomeness. HIS enthusiasm is infectious. But I've let my own enthusiasm for dancing and moving to slip away and be obscured by my dissatisfaction with the other instructors, and slight annoyance with other attendees. So rather than criticize, I will actively work to find things I LIKE about any given class. Top 3 recently:

*A week ago the instructor didn't show up and I actually lead the class (for one song) when a gym member brought the CD in. It was a lot of fun, and I was excited to be helping.

*The recent classes seem to be lower-energy/impact than what I'm used to. But this is actually helpful because I'm still rebuilding my strength and endurance after being sick a few times in April.

*There are MORE classes being offered in my hometown. With the price of gas, this is great news that I don't have to trek all over North County to find a class.

And bonus: Once I take these new instructors' classes a few times, I'll be more familiar with their style and their songs, so I can just focus on perfecting my technique instead of learning which way to turn or feeling a bit lost.

So there! I feel better already. :)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LANILUNA1 5/21/2011 4:00PM

  that's so awesome that you lead the class that time!! sweet!! ;)

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ZUMBAMAMA3 5/16/2011 7:18AM

    you go girl! rock it out

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AARONSGIRL420 5/15/2011 11:15PM

    Way to look at the positives when things have got you down. Stay strong.

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XPHOENIX 5/15/2011 12:16PM

    You will just probably never know how much you inspire me. I am in awe of your strength. You rock!! WOO HOO :)

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AMY_1217 5/14/2011 6:26PM

    I know its easy to say and harder to do, but don't let the stress get you down. If there's a solution to be found, you'll find it. Just be open to it.

I haven't done my Zumba dvd for a few weeks now, so I think I'll dust it off and flop my body around the room today. lol I know what you mean about having to "break in" another instructor. It sucks when you find someone you like and trust, and then you have to change. It feels like a huge roadblock is thrown up in front of you. You never know though, you may find someone else you enjoy just as much.

Have a great weekend, and don't forget to take a little destresser time for yourself. :D

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HOTRODSANDY 5/14/2011 1:24PM

    Congrats on leading a zumba song! You're such a natural leader/motivator!

Sorry about the divorce and financial difficulties. Both are hard individually, but to face both at the same time... extra emoticon coming your way. Hang in there!

Comment edited on: 5/14/2011 1:24:59 PM

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KALISWALKER 5/14/2011 2:57AM

    Jocelyn I can understand the stress. A divorce is blow, but now more than ever you have to take care of yourself!

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DDOORN 5/13/2011 10:25PM

    So TOUGH when pressures such as yours are mounting to hang in there and keep finding your SPARK...but somehow, you're doing it!

GL and keeping you in my thoughts and prayers for things to "turn the corner" and become more manageable...!

Don

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FITNESSJEN11 5/13/2011 4:00PM

    Hang in there! You'll make it through this challenge and be much stronger on the other side!
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CBAILEYC 5/13/2011 2:35PM

    Way to find the positive! Keep your chin up and hang in there. You've got my positive thoughts coming your way for less stress and more joy.
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C~

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ADVENTURE-GIRL 5/13/2011 11:46AM

    Jocelyn, I know you have a lot to deal with right now and I am glad that you are finding some relieve in exercise. Stress can really take a number on a person, so please continue to take care of yourself.
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JESPAH 5/13/2011 8:45AM

    You can always find the silver lining. :)

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SWEETZMIX 5/13/2011 8:15AM

    Joce through it all you have still managed to find some sunshine during your cloudy days!

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LECATES 5/13/2011 6:31AM

    Men can be such downers---my dh is finally going back to work after 6 months on short term disability----he would like to stay out longer---but Doc said back to work---Thank God!----wish I could find a zumba class I could afford---or one to try for free---they do sound like fun!

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ABB698 5/13/2011 4:42AM

    You will find light at the end of your tunnel soon! emoticon

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CHELAGETSFIT 5/13/2011 2:17AM

    I firmly believe that every difficulty in life is there to make us stronger. You are an incredible person, an incredible woman, and I know you will pull out from this situation a stronger one. Remember to always seek the good in everything. There's a song I really love and I think is very appropriate for you right now. Check it out when you get a chance.
http://www.youtube.com/w
atch?v=emgv-VRtMEU

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CROWGIRL9 5/13/2011 1:45AM

    Rar! I am so sorry for your chaos. :(

The Penny Saver has a coupon on the back this week for a free Zumba class at Eveoke in North Park or NTC in Point Loma-- my roomie and I were going to try the Eveoke class since it's right down the road here. I've never done it, but I hear nothing but awesome about it-- have you tried there yet?

Keep your head up, doll. :)

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IMREITE 5/13/2011 12:56AM

    That is what i hate about getting in a rut or a funk. everyday joys don't interest me. Sometimes i'll get a new workout video from the library to see if i can't motivate or excite myseld a little.

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.DUSTY. 5/12/2011 11:19PM

    Stress is a Biatch! Stay Strong Girl! emoticon

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VEEJAY3 5/12/2011 9:20PM

    Hmmmm. You need a little fairy dust.
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There. See? Your stress is melting away ... all Zumba instructors are improving ... that perfect job awaits around the corner ...

Dang it! emoticon emoticon That fairy needs to be a little more generous with that dust ... AH! That's better: Paris Hilton needs a whole bunch of stuff for her new apartment like NOW, and she doesn't care WHAT she pays for it, and she's waving cash at you.

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MCJULIEO 5/12/2011 4:47PM

    Hang in there.... you know we're rooting for you! Really!

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MZSASSY 5/12/2011 4:22PM

    You got it out now it time to make some changes

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GMO_JEN 5/12/2011 3:55PM

    I am so sorry for all of the stress-it can be overwhelming. But, you seem to have a great plan in place. getting sleep is always the hardest for me when i am stressed, but hopefully working out will help. And, it's awesome that you led a zumba class-very cool. and, fun, social interaction can always help get the stress down a little.
Hope your day is going better!


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KMTOOLEY 5/12/2011 2:07PM

    I hope your stress level decreases soon! Take a few minutes to close your eyes and just take some deep breaths that always seems to help me when things get hectic.

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MRSMELVIN1 5/12/2011 1:29PM

    Oh you have so much on your plate these days. Here anytime you need to talk.. emoticon

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SUSIEQ432 5/12/2011 12:33PM

    hI! I am sorry to hear of the stressful situation you are going through at this time. KEEP YOUR FOCUS! did you know that you were part of my blog last week? You are such an inspiration to me....I was feeling like giving up and then WOW...I stalked your SP page and got inspired again!
Stress is a killer....I know I have had my share in the past 3 years. A sick daughter, change of job, and now my own injury to heal from and not working.
Keep your focus. You will be in a better place....try to not stress over things you cannot control and keep tracking...it makes all the difference in the world. TRACK TRACK TRACK.....
SENDING A HUG.....AND SOME POSITIVE ENERGY
SUSIE emoticon emoticon emoticonU CAN DO IT!

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CHAOTIC-KITTY 5/12/2011 12:22PM

  Wow. You DO have a lot on your plate right now. But you WILL get through it all and you will be stronger from it all.

At least you have Zumba to relieve your stress.

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CECE0330 5/12/2011 11:36AM

    emoticon I don't envy you the ugly business you have on your plate at the moment. I went through a divorce, and at a low point got a fortune cookie that read: It is always darkest before the dawn. Cheesy, but I kept that fortune for a long, long time and every time the stress/loneliness/fear crept in, I reminded myself that it WOULD get better.

YAY for finding the good things to reconnect you to zumba! There's always certification yourself down the road too! emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/12/2011 11:36:23 AM

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Reason #007: Waterfalls

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

To see this photo bigger on Flickr.com click on this link:
www.flickr.com/photos/dreamsthatspar
kle/5705819997/in/photostream/lightbox/




"Why I Work To Stay Fit" Reason Series #007: Waterfalls!!!
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I was born in Hawaii, the land of waterfalls. Tropical breezes tease my hair, and I have hips made for hula (in my mind). We moved to Southern California before I was 2 years old, and I once gave up the dream of ever going back because of my size. I haven't visited yet. But, I'm done limiting my dreams now! I will shower beneath the warm falls!
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Many summers (back when my parents were married), we drove from California out to Colorado to visit family. I've seen the 7 Falls in the daytime, and glowing with lights at night, appearing to practically be on fire. As they describe it, "Located in South Cheyenne Canyon, Seven Falls cascades 181 feet in seven distinct steps down a solid cliff of pikes peak granite..." The smell of that wet granite is intoxicating, and I would be lost in flights of fancy, high on the whimsy of the falling water the whole time we were there.
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At the age of 8, while attending summer daycare, I avoided the (optional) hike that was offered a few times even though there was the promise of an actual WATERFALL at the end. I remember thinking it was too hot! Too far! Too hard! And I was too fat. But really, that was all too bad, because I wanted it. I've hiked now, twice! So it's just a matter of time before I get someone to let me back on the Marine Corps base Camp Pendleton to discover the hidden treasure I missed so many years ago!
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When I was 13 my imagination was swept away in the currents of the Colorado River running through the Grand Canyon. I treasured my single keepsake from the trip - a set of waterfall postcards. The camera & film for the trip were lost on one of the stops so I used them to decorate my room when I got home, not able to bear parting with any by mailing them off.

We can take a virtual 360 view of a Yosemite waterfall (see link), but nothing compares to flooding your senses in person. www.destination360.com/north-america
/us/california/yosemite-waterfall/virt
ual-tour

There are so many beautiful, wild, and wonderful things to discover and experience in the world. I will never blanket my life with limitations again!
"SPARKPEOPLE: Make Your Life an Adventure"
Me: "Yes, please!"


~MY LIFE, MY REASONS~
..Building my book to print (I have a list of dozens, and hundreds more bouncing around in my head)..
#001: Me
(Not made yet)
#002: Lap
www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=3870915

#003: Abs
www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=3888915

#004: Zumbawear
www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=4075960

#005: Carnival Rides
www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=4100030

#006: Make Believe
www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
ge_public_journal_individu
al.asp?blog_id=4166850

#007: Waterfalls
www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4222165


  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DRB13_1 5/11/2011 6:12PM

    Enjoy planning your trip to view as many waterfalls as you can, and don't forget your camera! Don't forget to look for the rainbows in the mist. emoticon

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TREASURINGLIFE 5/11/2011 3:12PM

    For me, waterfalls = happiness. I just love them! :)

And from now on, there'll be no more "too hot," "too far," "too hard," or "too fat." NO MORE!

- Michelle

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JRIMM4 5/11/2011 12:13PM

    With hiking/backpacking as my main focus for activity, I really identify with your 007: waterfalls! The ephemeral streams near the trails I frequent are beginning to flow and I'm finding waterfalls, some tiny and some majestic, all over the place! So different from hiking in the fall and winter. I'd love to visit some of the falls you've described in your blog!

JR

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JESPAH 5/11/2011 9:37AM

    I love you and I love this statement:

" I will never blanket my life with limitations again!"


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DIFROMWYOMING 5/10/2011 11:50PM

    emoticon

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XPHOENIX 5/10/2011 11:33PM

    Beautiful. You.... and the waterfalls. You're just awesome! XO

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ADVENTURE-GIRL 5/10/2011 7:10PM

    I love this reason! What a beautiful part of nature to experience. Hawaii is one of my dream vacations too. Are you saying there is a waterfall at Camp Pendleton? If there is we have to go, lol.

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FITKITTYMAMA 5/10/2011 6:43PM

    I absolutely LOVE waterfalls and they are one of my reasons for living a healthier life too, so that I can travel to, hike to, and visit as many gorgeous waterfalls as possible. There are 3 or 4 images of waterfalls in my vision collage. When you are ready to go to Hawaii let me know... I'll come to and we'll visit as many waterfalls as we can!

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AMY_1217 5/10/2011 5:30PM

    I love this! You are amazing! That was me as a kid. Too hot, too tired, too fat. Thank you for posting this.

I'm going to wipe the tears from my eyes now and do my workout videos! Thank you!!!!

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RYDERB 5/10/2011 5:27PM

    Another great blog. Now that you're getting into hiking, you should check into Mammoth Lakes in the summertime. There's just so many beautiful hikes you can take. You could spend the whole summer, and still not see everything.

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APRILBLESS 5/10/2011 12:50PM

    Yes, I second that. Absolutely beautiful... emoticon

Now I have to plan my own waterfalls trip, lol!
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Comment edited on: 5/10/2011 12:51:24 PM

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ZURDTA- 5/10/2011 8:30AM

    Beautiful...

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MCJULIEO 5/10/2011 8:11AM

    Hips for hula?

Now, I think that is a POSITIVE attitude!

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ME_FIRST 5/10/2011 7:44AM

    I love that you numbered your reasons as 3 digits. I think we can probably think of 999 reasons why we want to lose weight and get healthy and active.

Travel and adventure is one of my big top 5 reasons too. Funny that you mentioned it today because I was thinking about traveling when I woke up this morning. I want to go to Hawaii, a 9 day women's cooking tour of Tuscany, China, and Austria to name a few.

It's just a matter of determination and time and we'll be there. Yvonne



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FERRETLOVER1 5/10/2011 7:23AM

    I LOVE waterfalls - I will have to visit Hawaii one day!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/10/2011 6:31AM

    I'm all about waterfalls too!

...just from a slightly different perspective.

http://www.spar
kpeople.com/mypage_photo_galler
y_enlarge.asp?id=3583414
>LOL

Someday when I'm healed and more skilled I will run the Grand Canyon.

There are some nice ones around here that I can show you next time you visit. There are bumper stickers that say "Ithaca is Gorges" for a reason, LOL

Also, when is the last time you saw Niagara? The best view is from the Canada side and I have this awesome hotel I stay at on the Welland Canal where you can watch the giant freighters locking up and down the Escarpment right from your balcony while reading where they're from, what they're carrying, etc

Comment edited on: 5/10/2011 6:36:40 AM

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LECATES 5/10/2011 6:12AM

    I love waterfalls, too---not many around here though---I live on flat land!

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KMTOOLEY 5/10/2011 5:08AM

    I love seeing your reasons! They always make me find new reasons to keep motivated.

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FLOWER1967 5/10/2011 5:01AM

    Lovely Blog. You were born in Hawaii ? Wow....you ever been back ? You should. Waterfalls are beautiful. Its only water but its full of power.


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WA2MCD 5/10/2011 3:25AM

  Thanks. I felt like I was looking at the falls. Sharon

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The First Step Was the Easiest (FEF^2 Blog Challenge)

Sunday, May 08, 2011

I've been thinking about this all week, over-thinking it, then avoiding thinking about it, finally forgetting and then reminding myself to think about it. This last half hour of Saturday is my final moment to get the points this week for my Challenge Team, The Cute & Shady Sweeties, so here goes...

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MAIN CHALLENGE: For the main challenge, blog about why you decided to change your habits to become a healthy, fit person. Even if we arenít at goal, we have ALL made lots of changes. What motivated you to take that first step? Many of us donít take enough time to think about what brought us here, but holding on to that could help you to motivate yourself when you hit a plateau of have a rough week. Share your thoughts in a blog so that other participants in the FEF challenge who are not on your team can comment.
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By the end of 2007, at 29, I had spent more than half of my life obese. I did Jazzercise for Kids as an overweight child, and dieted with Weight Watchers as a pre-teen. When my mom took me to a lap-band/gastric surgery at 17, I decided I was completely finished with trying to lose weight. That option wasn't for me, so I figured there really wasn't anything out there that would help me tackle weight loss. (I think my exact thought was, "Okay, well, I'm just going to be fat forever," in a stubbornly defiant tone.) So I played up my best features, and tried to develop confidence. --But all of this is a different blog, one with lots of pictures, that can come later. Back to the topic.

And refused to talk about my weight loss, appearance, size, or any of that with anyone except my husband. I was fortunate enough to avoid any major disease, but I suffered from migraines almost several times each month, barely slept, and was in pain at nearly 400 pounds.


2006, not my highest weight

Inside, I was hurting. On the outside, I tried to be as pretty as possible, and enjoy the few things I could find. Here's a typical "why are you taking my picture" face, followed by the pose (because I wanted to have something other than a frowny picture for MySpace.. Remember that site? LOL!):


2006, not my highest

But those weren't the only difficulties I had. My work was challenging emotionally, and my home life was worse as I tried to help my husband handle his internal demons. In a way, changing my lifestyle was the only thing I could do. I felt like there was no hope anywhere. I struggled with the same intense depression and suicidal thoughts that I carried since childhood.

But two things happened in January 2008. My friend, Kelly, sent me on a wild goose chase to find her page on "this new site that's totally addicting", and my co-worker and confidant, Shane, suggested that we try walking outside during our "meetings" instead of office hopping.

The first steps out the door at work were the easiest... To get away from prying ears, and breathe in fresh air was a relief. The next steps after that (just getting around the building) were HARD. My lungs burned like they did in P.E. at school, and I never felt like I could make it for the whole 5 minutes. I complained a bit, but he persisted. And I started exploring some of the articles on SparkPeople, still determined that losing weight wasn't my objective, wasn't going to be part of my life.

Learning about how nutrients actually help to fuel the body, and feeling like doing what SparkPeople suggested wasn't at all like the dieting I did as a teen, actually MADE SENSE from a scientific perspective, was what turned my doubt into hope.

And finding success that first month with that little bit of occasional walking (I lost 10 pounds without changing my food), convinced me that my body was crying out for change.

I made a SparkPage and started thinking about how nice it would be to be able to tie my shoes by simply bending over, or crossing my legs (you know, without having to stretch my leg out across the bed and holding my breath to reach). I thought about being able to hold my nephews without having them sit on my tummy and slide off of my "lap". I was about to grow out of the largest size available in stores near me, and was dismayed at the thought of online or catalog shopping, because I like to TRY ON my clothes... And I thought about all kinds of other benefits, too. They were all related to functional ways of getting through the world, markers of fitness and health that are much smaller than running a marathon.

I saw examples on Spark of people who had lost 50 pounds, and thought that I could tackle my extra 200. And so I did.

These pictures related to this phrase showed up recently on my friends' Spark Pages (like Annie's)... And I completely relate to it!


I'm more than half-way there. But I'm fully into pursuing things that make me feel good -GENUINELY feel good- eating well, and moving often.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KINSBAILE 5/11/2011 12:53PM

    As always you're an inspiration! *MWAH* :)

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HAPPYWRITER7 5/10/2011 2:43PM

    I love reading about your journey! Ive always felt that if we were in the same class or something we'd be friends!

the sparker formerly known as reluctant

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LOTUSFLOWER 5/10/2011 1:12PM

    You are AMAZING and inspiring. emoticon

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KSGROTHE 5/9/2011 7:48PM

    You know, I thought and overthought about my FEF-Squared blog last week, too! emoticon

You're doing great! Keep up the good work! emoticon

- Karen

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RYDERB 5/9/2011 4:46PM

    Another great blog. You're always such an inspiration. Thank you.

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THEMIGHTYLEX 5/9/2011 3:01PM

    Excellent blog!
I'm so proud of you and how far you've come.
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APRILBLESS 5/9/2011 1:03PM

    emoticon... you are an inspiration. Made me think and smile for the day.... emoticon

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LESS_IS_MO 5/9/2011 9:04AM

    Beautiful blog. Congratulations on your success and every wish for continued success! We deserve it!

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SWEETZMIX 5/9/2011 8:14AM

    You are always an inspiration.

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EFFLORESENSE 5/8/2011 11:01PM

    Thank you for sharing this. It was quite inspirational to me.

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XPHOENIX 5/8/2011 10:32PM

    I just love you. You amaze me. Proud to be your friend! XO

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FITKITTYMAMA 5/8/2011 5:49PM

    I think one of the reasons I find you so inspiring (aside from the fact that you are just an amazing person in general) is the way you are able to communicate so beautifully in your blogs. Thank you as always for sharing your journey with us!

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MACEWOMAN 5/8/2011 1:35PM

    "She believed she could so she did." Wow, how much stuff would we do, if we believed in ourselves. Reminds me of one of my favorite quotes "What would you do if you werenít afraid?" from the book "Who Moved My Cheese?".

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1DERLAND14 5/8/2011 12:47PM

    I can relate to so much of what you said in this blog! There was a time in my life where I settled for being the fat girl and "played up my best features."
I am so glad you are on here to post about your journey. It has inspired me and so many others!!
Spark People is amazing & I'm so glad to have you as a buddy!!

Keep up the amazing work!!! emoticon

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AMY_1217 5/8/2011 12:06PM

    What a wonderful blog! I had a lot of the same issues. I even came to terms with my weight for a while and decided that when none of my clothes fit anymore, I'd just order moomoos (sp) online and wear them. And I didn't see anything wrong with dressing like Mrs. Roper! lol I thank my lucky stars every day that this didn't happen.
You're such an inspiration! Thank you for being you. Everyone could use a good example to follow, and you're it!

Have a great weekend!

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FINDINGLUV4SELF 5/8/2011 10:53AM

    emoticonBlog! You have totally motivated me today. I was ready to delete my account because I felt like a failure. But I realize that I've got to do this for me. I am important. I deserve to be healthy. emoticon emoticon

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ZOEYBLU 5/8/2011 10:43AM

    I love that phrase .....


And you DID !


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FLOWER1967 5/8/2011 8:16AM

    Thanks for this Blog Joce. Wow...you sure have come a long way. That pic of you frowning....Ive never seen you frown. You can sure give the evil eye !!! lol.
Isnt Spark People an AMAZING place ! Where would you be without it ? Where would we ALL be ? Probably still struggling ....
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JESPAH 5/8/2011 8:04AM

    Yanno, the initial inertia is the hardest bit to get through and get over. It's that first hurdle. I need to remember this, too. Thanks for reminding me. I do believe you have given me tomorrow's blog topic, m'love.

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DDOORN 5/8/2011 7:12AM

    Go Jocelyn GO!

Thank you for sharing SO MUCH insight and caring with all of us throughout your journey toward reclaiming your life!

Don

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LECATES 5/8/2011 7:04AM

    Glad that you found Spark and for sharing your journey.

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ZURDTA- 5/8/2011 6:17AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon gosh, I have no words....

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SLIKITTY97 5/8/2011 3:07AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Thanks so much for sharing. I'm sure a lot of people can relate. I have also been overweight most of my life though I tended to yo-yo a lot with my weight going way up and way down. The only time I was a very low weight was when I was taking diet pills, chugging slim fast instead of eating and working out with a personal trainer- this time I want to do it right and I want to make it stick for life. I can easily see myself still using sparkpeople 30 years from now! Seems like you've made a lot of changes for the better! Keep em comin'!
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ABB698 5/8/2011 3:03AM

    ......and so the journey began! Yay for that step that lead you to being strong and healthy today! You are amazing, and are what SP is all about! Keep on keeping on Girlie!! emoticon

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Finally Healed?

Tuesday, May 03, 2011



Since I suffer from migraines, I like to think that I don't take feeling good for granted. I feel very blessed that my health concerns are minimal. If I ever do, it's not too long before I'm reminded.

But, following my Bronchitis a few weeks ago, I had another week of weak coughing. And then I was plagued by headaches and muscle tension for another week, and then I was hit with some serious food poisoning last Thursday night that was really horrendous for the hours that I was supposed to be sleeping. I lost over 6 pounds in 2 days. Luckily NEWSGIRL2177 (Heather) is a neighbor down the street, AND my friend. She ran to the store to get me some medicine, when I finally relented the next day. That's what saved me. I started rebuilding my hydration once things started quieting down.

It's taken days and days for my system to start to feel like I could eat anything other than saltines and bananas. The bubbling tummy continued.. But FINALLY, today was the first day that things were more normal! YAY! I still can't eat much all at once, but I've gained back some weight and feel better.

Except for maybe some headaches and related stuff, I should be clear of all sickness for at least a YEAR (my normal) OR TWO! HAhaha. I hope. I'm so very ready for that.



Yesterday morning (Sunday) I went to a 24 Hour Fitness Yoga class. I wouldn't have gone if Heather (NEWSGIRL2177) hadn't accompanied me to the gym. We even left and came back with our mats. She finished the whole class, I was very proud of her! It had been over a year since my last class, and I noticed how much stronger I was from all the pushups I've been doing. The stretching and (major) efforts really loosened those muscles up, and I felt SO MUCH BETTER afterward. No more headache. It was the first serious push toward feeling 100% again. I need to figure out a way to get this class back into my routine on a regular basis.

I took this quiz tonight about what fitness class is right for me. It said that I enjoy FUNCTIONAL FITNESS. So true.



(May Flowers picture from dlburnett at Wake Tech)

So this week, the first week of May, is dedicated to rejuvenation! I'm going to feel STRONG again!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WHATAGRL42 5/9/2011 11:18PM

    Love your yoga pics posted on your blog. As one lady once put it in my yoga class (re: "Chair pose",that you have pictured above):
"That's the most UNCOMFORTABLE CHAIR I've ever sat in!"
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Hang in there. I've been injured with some wierd spinal tork affecting my piriformis.. .hence, sciatica. It's miserable being miserable when you want to get back to feeling fab!
Lisa in CA

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TAWNYBIRD 5/6/2011 10:39PM

    i was sick too. glad you feel better:)

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GIRL_WALKING 5/6/2011 5:12PM

    I didn't even know you were sick, Glad you made it through! Heather sounds like a great friend and neighbor to have!!! Food poisoining sucks, I had it BAD in Mexico and ended up in the hospital! Sorry you had to go through that! Keep easing back into things and stay hydrated even though you're feeling better. I took probiotics and got 3 colonics six months later to help my tummy recover. Enjoy the yoga. Are you still doing the spring challenge?

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35ANGELS 5/6/2011 4:06PM

    Wow...I've never had food poisoning...scary. Glad to see your feeling better. I'm sure you will get back into the groove again soon.

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AMY_1217 5/6/2011 1:36PM

    emoticon Here's to feeling better!

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KINSBAILE 5/6/2011 1:36PM

    You are a strong woman, you can hop back from this and overcome! *HUGS*

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PIXIEFLOWER1 5/6/2011 8:57AM

    Happy to hear you are feeling better.

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BCAVAIUOLO 5/5/2011 2:33PM

    glad to hear you are feeling better. emoticon

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MARTY728 5/5/2011 12:57PM

    Happy you are feeling better!

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SLIKITTY97 5/5/2011 12:32PM

    Glad to hear you're feeling better! =) When your body just won't cooperate, then just do what you can while you can and hang in there!
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RYDERB 5/4/2011 7:01PM

    Sounds like it was pretty rough for awhile. I'm glad you're back!

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CHAITEAKITTY40 5/4/2011 2:37PM

    So glad you are feeling better! I know the saltine diet all too well (mine with ginger ale). Glad the yoga/stretching helped. That is something I need to work on, stretching and relieving muscle tension.



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MACEWOMAN 5/4/2011 10:30AM

    Glad you're on the mend. Coughing is rough, but fighting food poisoning sounds awful. emoticon

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ABB698 5/4/2011 2:12AM

    Glad you are FINALLY feeling like yourself again! Go Get 'Em Girlie! emoticon

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KEL_2800 5/3/2011 9:21PM

    Glad you're feeling better! Your pics are looking awesome!!! Keep up all the great work! emoticon

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FLOWER1967 5/3/2011 7:45PM

    I LOVED Yoga when I did it... I did it for 2 years. It is so good for your core strentgh. I certainly hope you can work it into your exercise regime. Glad you are feeling better too. Being sick is a good way to lose weight...but its no fun !
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FITKITTYMAMA 5/3/2011 4:41PM

    So glad that you are feeling better!!

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CBAILEYC 5/3/2011 3:44PM

    So glad to hear you're on the mend!
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C~

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NEWSGIRL2177 5/3/2011 1:10PM

    Hooray for health! Good timing, too. We have a date with a Zumba class tonight, sister!
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THEMIGHTYLEX 5/3/2011 12:38PM

    What a great commitment to make.

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GINNJEN2000 5/3/2011 9:03AM

    Feeling strong is so neccesary for survivial in general here is to feeling strong once again!!!

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CAITB21 5/3/2011 9:00AM

    I'm so glad you're feeling better!! Hopefully you can completely kick everything soon!

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DIFROMWYOMING 5/3/2011 8:59AM

    Glad you're starting to feel better!

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TJHIERS 5/3/2011 8:40AM

    emoticon glad you are doing well.. emoticon

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SWEETZMIX 5/3/2011 8:38AM

    Very glad you are feeling better Joce! I know you are going to be back at it in May!

xoxo

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MALCONTENTION 5/3/2011 8:28AM

    So glad you're feeling better! And that picture is of the Tetons in Wyoming, my home for nine years. It was so great to see it--they're even more beautiful in person! But they're actually summer flowers--it so darned cold there that the seasons are pushed back!

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DDOORN 5/3/2011 8:20AM

    So glad to hear you've put the crud bug behind you!

Don

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JESPAH 5/3/2011 7:52AM

    Yay Strong gal! :)

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MELLABELLAS 5/3/2011 7:50AM

    I'm glad you feel better. Bummer about the food poisoning...
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DAWNDMOORE40 5/3/2011 7:48AM

    emoticonYou are off to a good start with exercise and a postive attitude! Have a blessed day! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FIT_TERI 5/3/2011 7:24AM

    Glad you're feeling better and that the yoga helped with your headache!

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SHANTODD420 5/3/2011 7:13AM

    Good to see you are feeling better have a great day.

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ZURDTA- 5/3/2011 6:51AM

    I am so glad you are feeling better. I think you were totally drained - you have had such a lot going on lately and your body just needed to stop. The food poisoning on top of it all was so unlucky.

Take care of YOU the way you take care of others. So, here's to good health and a the Merry Month of May.

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LECATES 5/3/2011 6:02AM

    Glad you are feeling better.

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RD03875 5/3/2011 3:32AM

    Good luck getting back to it! You CAN do it. Hope you feel great for a long time!

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EUPHRATES 5/3/2011 3:21AM

    Oooo, I should go take that quiz. SO glad you're feeling better!


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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/3/2011 2:59AM

    Yay! Glad you're feeling better!
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