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Thursday, June 02, 2011

I'm waiting for my trophies, please! It's June 2! emoticon

A month ago, I posted that I hoped to be Ms. Consistency for the month of May. I set up some streaks on my page but SP hasn't gotten around to notifying us of our progress yet. If you're like me, you kinda look forward to those little icons and awards that they send. Some people never grow up, do we!?

So, I'm patting myself on the back for tracking food and exercise daily in May. That doesn't mean I stayed within my ranges every day but I tracked probably 95% of what I ate, striving for progress not perfection. Managed to lose 3.3 pounds. I also walked A LOT in addition to my more intense runs and Nordic walking workouts, including a 10K benefit walk. I've been doing without the car as much as possible, even went 10 days without using it at all. And another factor that has contributed to the progress has been ditching the TV except for two events - the royal wedding and a German national team soccer match.

On June 9, I celebrate one year of daily exercise. Not my longest streak, but approaching it.

My goals for June - more of the same, and I've also got an eye on running a 7K race on July 2 which means I'm in training!

I'm also going to prayerfully add another goal. I've been cocooning and need to start reaching out and (re-)building some of the IRL relationships that have gone unattended over the past months. That means a daily phone call, card, visit, or email to a friend or family member.

Thanks to Mr. Consistency - Great is HIS faithfulness! - for helping me to develop my consistency over the past month in the areas of eating and exercise. Wanting to access that for other areas, too, in the months ahead.

Edit: Thanks, SP, you didn't let me down!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    On June 9, I celebrate one year of daily exercise.

WOW that is AWESOME! An inspiration for me to imitate.

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CHRYS13 6/11/2011 8:04AM

    Wow....one year of daily exercise! Terrific!! emoticon

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MKACILLAS 6/8/2011 2:35PM

    Good Blog and Congrats for 4 years of sparking and exercise! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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VIVIANJ5 6/8/2011 12:54PM

    I love this post! And the reminder of how important consistency is to our ongoing efforts...I've been following my own plan about 80-90%, but I know that is what is keeping me back. Need to recommit, and get back to working it, and losing it!

Take care, Michelle!

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MRSLATTING 6/6/2011 5:13PM

    emoticon So awesome!!!!!!!!

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SJG1953 6/6/2011 12:47AM

    emoticon Job Michelle!!

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KATHYKIM 6/4/2011 5:37PM

    Great job!

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ASMPP1 6/3/2011 5:41PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CMPEARL 6/3/2011 4:19PM

    I love my spark trophies and the 'likes' that my friends leave for me emoticon emoticon Here's to a wonderful June!!! emoticon emoticon

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DDOORN 6/3/2011 9:16AM

    Kudos to consistency! Keep Sparking On! :-)


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TRYINGHARD1948 6/3/2011 1:50AM

    WooHoo, you are certainly doing it Michelle. emoticon emoticon

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CTEMPLE 6/2/2011 10:21PM

    You're my hero: one year of daily exercise!!!
Claudia emoticon

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FRANNIEDID 6/2/2011 4:38PM

    Woo Hoo!!!!! Way to go!

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 6/2/2011 10:25AM

    emoticon Just in case SP doesn't get them out this month! Congratulations on your exercise consistency!!! That is totally AWESOME!!

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    You have made great strides in building good habits -- you inspire me!

Your "added" goal is one that I completely relate to. I tend to prefer my "own" company as it is, BUT, I also need to reconnect and rebuild. I will join you in that effort!

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JOJOSZENT 6/2/2011 9:14AM

    Hehe, nope, I'll never grow up.

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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Because I live in Germany, I'm not always fully aware of which American holidays are coming up. (There is a German version of Memorial Day but it's not at the end of May.) Today, May 29, is the anniversary of my mother's death and that has been on my mind much more than the 30th. Just yesterday, I realized that the two dates will always be linked in my mind. Two days of remembering and praying.

TOMORROW, I'll remember the veterans who served our country, including my Dad who was in the Navy in the South Pacific during WW2. And I'll pray for and remember the military folks who are serving now in places like Afghanistan and Iraq and Okinawa - and Germany.

I have lots of friends who have served in the military and some who are serving now. As a matter of fact, I came to know Jesus through my denomination's ministry to the military and will always be grateful that they opened their doors of fellowship to us expats as well.

TODAY, I remember my dmom. I choose to focus on the good memories. The not-so-good ones tend to demand attention at odd moments anyway, so why give them any more time?! And I also think of my ddad who has spent the last year without his partner of almost 60 years. Looking forward to our usual Sunday call this afternoon.

TOMORROW will also mean that the year of the "firsts" is over! This a good thing, a signpost of hope on the road to healing.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

Standing on that promise today!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FRANNIEDID 6/1/2011 8:11PM

    Sending my thoughts and prayers to you. It does get easier as the years pass. I talk to my mom every Sunday too. I still miss my dad terribly though.

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 5/30/2011 12:03PM

    I remember you writing about your mom. Since I have my ups and downs with my own mom, I can so relate to you choosing to focus on the good memories.

It's good that you can do that! Have a peaceful day.

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SJG1953 5/29/2011 10:31PM

    You are so right about remembering purposly about the good things in life. The not so good things take up too much of our memory time already. lol

Amen to that scripture! emoticon

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CTEMPLE 5/29/2011 10:08PM


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ASMPP1 5/29/2011 6:01PM


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    Yes all the firsts are hard.

When the random bad memories come up I immediately stop and deliberately remember 3 good times. It doesn't stop the tears but it does help.

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    Hugs for you sweet one and prayers for mom on her anniversary. I am still going through my firsts. I always would have a BBQ dinner today with mom and my friends. While I was cooking outside, it was mom's job to man the stove and keep stirring...So today is "my first" without my diligent stirrer.

Definitely focus on the memories that make you smile. They are the ones that touch our hearts. emoticon

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Fly-By Blog

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Just checking in to say that I was able to get in a (slow) run today after the rain cleared. It's good to be feeling healthy again! I actually didn't mean to run over an hour, but had to backtrack when I noticed that the sunglass clip had fallen off my glasses. When I came out into the full sunshine after running the shady, wooded trail --- "ack! this is beautiful but what happened to my shades?!" Going back to find the clip added another ten minutes or so to my tour. But it also meant I burned a bunch more calories and I'm hoping that might impact tomorrow's weigh-in.

It seems like spring went by very fast and we're already in full summer. The heavy weekend rains changed everything from those delicate greens to a rich, full color. More sunshine and warm weather forecast for the week ahead. It will be a busy one and I'm glad of that because my hours at the language school have been rather short so far this month. It will be good to end May with a better total on the paycheck!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SJG1953 5/23/2011 11:56PM

    That's great Michelle! emoticon emoticon

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FRANNIEDID 5/23/2011 10:05AM

    Woo Hoo for you! Rain keeps teasing us. I finally decided yesterday that I had to water everything so it poured last night!!

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ASMPP1 5/23/2011 9:34AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TRYINGHARD1948 5/23/2011 4:40AM

    Great to see you back to strength and hopefully the pay check will be too.

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DLG0505 5/23/2011 3:13AM

    Howdy! I really don't have anything to add except you are such a great team leader! Thank you for keeping in touch with us the way you do!

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CTEMPLE 5/22/2011 7:19PM

    Great that you can run dear M. As for strawberries and other berries they're OK to have, not so much fructose. The sweeter they taste the more fructose they have, D'OH! I realized that even the apples I chose ( Royal Galah) are the sweetest ones. It all makes sense.

Comment edited on: 5/22/2011 7:20:12 PM

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CMPEARL 5/22/2011 6:24PM

    Awesome job on your run!!! Hoping it helps that weigh in number :). We are getting crazy weather here in Iowa as well...warm and stormy today.

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DDOORN 5/22/2011 5:53PM

    Kudos to the run! We've got another week of RAIN forecasted. I have a feeling if the rain ever stops we'll be jumping right into summer too!


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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 5/22/2011 4:04PM

    See...there is a silver lining to the sunglasses clip falling off....a longer run time! It seems your weather is on par with what is happening in the Chicago area. Quick spring, now onto summer!

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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I was catching up on blogs this evening and found that a couple of my Spark buddies were listing the positives of the day. I liked that idea, so here goes:

I'm within my calorie range.
I got in 3 short walks and have time this evening for another.
I was able to go to our Senior's meeting for the first time in a couple of years and caught up with some precious people.
I took my last antibiotic pill.
I got a bunch of free books for my Kindle.
I had more energy than I have in awhile and taught two productive, fun English classes this morning.
Walking through the park I saw lots of baby ducks - including one family all in a row!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
It looks like rain - we need it!
emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 5/12/2011 8:13AM

    Good idea...! So easy to slip into whining...have to remember this!


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SJG1953 5/12/2011 1:46AM

    I never get tired of reading and thinking about the positives in life. The Bible tells us to focus and think about those things which are beautiful, praise worthy, true, etc. I think it makes the enemy mad! lol

I also enjoy watching those duck families walking all in a row. I really enjoyed reading your blog!

Blessings and hugs, Shirley

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CTEMPLE 5/11/2011 11:13PM

    I'm a kindle user too!
We have quite a lot of brown ducks with family crossing the road around here too always a thrill to see them.

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BANDMAMAPC 5/11/2011 10:17PM

    ok, that looks easy enough. I'll blog some positives,

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TRYINGHARD1948 5/11/2011 4:56PM

    What a great way to blog, love it.

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HEALTHY_CAROLYN 5/11/2011 4:01PM

    Woohoo! I like all those positives, and I'm so glad you shared them. It definitely makes a difference when my sparkfriends post the good stuff, makes me want to make some good stuff of my own!

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NEWNAC304 5/11/2011 2:39PM

    I need to steal this idea. I'm in a very foul mood and this might lift my spirits.

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TIGGERRD 5/11/2011 2:03PM

    Great to focus on the positive! You go girl!

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MSCAPALDO 5/11/2011 1:50PM

    Great Job!! Keep it positive! emoticon

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Sunday, May 08, 2011

So, it's Mother's Day and I'm doing surprisingly well. I even managed to go to church, although I could have skipped it since I'm still sick with this virus on top of the allergies. (There are days like this even for folks in ministry - just being honest here!) The children's ministry group did a good job. The kids sang and had made something for their mothers that they passed out to them, but there were none of those "recognizing all the women" things that has been so awkward.

Instead, one of the ladies had made "Hope" cookies - the theme of the sermon message - and everyone got one at the end of the service. Maybe there is hope that our leadership is getting more sensitive on dealing with certain issues - like grief! And we got out early today and that means a longer afternoon on the balcony relaxing. YES!

Roaming the web today, I came across and thought I'd share it here. It blessed me today.

Hugs to the others who are remembering their Moms today. And to all you Moms out there, too a happy day!
emoticon emoticon emoticon
Loss of Mother Poem

Now that I am gone,
remember me with smiles and laughter.
And if you need to cry,
cry with your brother or sister
who walks in grief beside you.
And when you need me,
put your arms around anyone
and give to them what you need to give to me.
There are so many who need so much.
I want to leave you something Ė
something much better than words or sounds.
Look for me in the people Iíve known
or helped in some special way.
Let me live in your heart
as well as in your mind.
You can love me most
by letting your love reach out to our loved ones,
by embracing them and living in their love.
Love does not die, people do.
So, when all thatís left of me is love,
give me away as best you can.

~ Author unknown

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CMPEARL 5/11/2011 12:05AM

    What a beautiful poem...I hope it brought you some comfort not only on Sunday but whenever you need it most. Sending you virtual hugs!! emoticon

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 5/10/2011 1:13PM

    Nice poem....thanks for sharing it.

I hope you are feeling better now.

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    Very touching poem - and it came along at a good time. Mother's Day seemed extra hard this year with my dad being sick. But what the poem says is so true to what my mom would want me to do and that's something i will remind myself of it every time i get sad.

The Hope cookies are a great idea on so many levels. Kudos to the lady who made them! i hope the idea catches on.
emoticon emoticon

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JANETELIZABETH1 5/9/2011 10:28AM

    It was good to read your blog Michelle...
I know Mothers Day was a month back in the UK but I still miss my mum too, hard to believe 4 years have passed....
We know our mums will always be our mums because we still have them deep in our hearts.

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FRANNIEDID 5/9/2011 10:14AM

    I grieve with you, my mother is so important to me. I am so sorry that she is not with you but know that she is in your heart and soul. The poem was so lovely, thank you for sharing it. I want to share it with my SIL, he lost his mother when he was 17 and I know he still grieves for her!

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SJG1953 5/9/2011 12:55AM

    Thank you for the beautiful poem. I lost my mom almost 2 years ago. I miss her very much. I'm glad you got through the day. I got through it quite well myself. I wouldn't call my mom back for anything for I know she is with her LORD and Saviour and she doesn't hurt anymore. I will see her again.


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DDOORN 5/8/2011 10:34PM

    Beautiful poem...thank you for sharing...

Grief is such a vital part of living. Good to hear your leadership is coming around to this...!


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TRYINGHARD1948 5/8/2011 7:05PM

    It is true, we never stop missing our Mum, no matter how long ago they passed. A beautiful poem and thank you for sharing. emoticon

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ANGORA4 5/8/2011 1:46PM


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KATHYKIM 5/8/2011 12:16PM

    Thank you for the lovely poem. I lost my mom 30 years ago and though I STILL miss her, I am so blessed that she touched many lives and I can look back proudly on everything that she did.

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NEWLIBRARIAN 5/8/2011 8:58AM

    I feel so Happy and Blessed today. They were talking on the radio about this being one more akward first for many people. Praying for you this morning

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