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LKEITHO SparkPoints: (554,772)
Fitness Minutes: (370,633)
Posts: 23,646
4/5/14 11:52 P

Welcome to SparkPeople! You'll find lots of support, information and inspiration here. All the best on achieving your goals!

DIVAGLOW SparkPoints: (554,057)
Fitness Minutes: (335,318)
Posts: 57,614
4/4/14 9:26 P

emoticon emoticon emoticon WELCOME TO SPARK!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon
Congrats on taking the first step into changing your life to a more healthier one by joining the site. Spark is filled with amazing people that will motivate, support and encourage you on your journey. There is so much to learn and discover here, take this one day at a time.

A couple of things I would like to suggestion to make you Spark experience a great one.

1. Put together your own Spark page. This is a great way to communicate with other members and build relationships that will support and motivate you. You can do this by going to the START page and the green section has something about your Sparkpage.

2. Make goals for yourself. Each month I make a list of what I want to accomplish that month and break them down to smaller goals to work with week by week. This way the BIG picture doesn't seem so big.

3. Join Spark teams. There are tons of teams here and you will be able to find ones that fit to what you like or want in a team.

The key to success here is to be active and you've already started by joining. You will find that everyone is willing to help you out if you need it. Spark friends are here for support, motivation and encouragement. Good luck on your journey to a healthier lifestyle! Again, welcome to the SP family!
*~ Paula *~
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MOTHEROFAVALON SparkPoints: (894)
Fitness Minutes: (585)
Posts: 2
4/4/14 6:46 P

Thanks for your input. I have raised 4 kids on foodstamps so know a lot of tricks to eating cheaper but now that I have no kids in the house I get a lot less. Not to mention I swear every time I go the store the prices seem to have gone up again! I feed at least two on my amount sometimes more because i have my grandson a lot. We don't have a krogers here I live in Southern Oregon and that is a more east coast chain. I have spent a lot of hours comparing the prices at the grocery stores here and Food 4 Less is overall the best. It is locally owned By Sherm and he buys a 85% of the four H raised livestock. Which is good for many reasons. Unfortunately Oregon is not big on couponing. There are coupons but mostly on name brands. Its cheaper in most cases to buy store or off brands. I do purchase from several places, watching sale papers and such. I wish we could use foodstamps at the farmers markets!

I believe my biggest issue is probably stress and depression. Both issues tend to pack on weight or at least keep it on. Stress is not something that will decrease for myself or many others anytime soon with the economy the way it is. I am working hard at building my business and increasing profits (so that I can actually get some profits) so that I can move back into my own place. Having to live off a friend with almost everything I own packed into a garage does nothing to assist in raising self esteem or happiness. No matter what I always continue to move forward. I have overcome a lot in my lifetime including losing a twin sister at birth, surviving a cancerous tumor as a baby, a seriously dysfunctional childhood, and an abusive alcoholic husband. No matter what I will survive. Just want to do more now and do it healthier.

HANNAHMO3 SparkPoints: (6,230)
Fitness Minutes: (3,397)
Posts: 133
4/4/14 5:23 P

HI! thank you for shareing your story! i too am on food stamps, i get $180/mnth. i am 23 years young, and that $180/month feeds me and my boyfriend of 6 years (he weighs 108lbs and is 5'6). i completly understand your struggle to buy healthy foods. if you have a kroger in your area, i recomend shopping there. you earn points towards gas (every 100 pts is 10 cents off per gallon, and with gas upwards of $4/gallon and on a budget, who couldnt use 10 cents off?) i typically per month with just spending the $180 on my link card, earn 200 points a month. and with your kroger card, you get special saveings. kroger cards are free to sign up for, so far this year alone, i have saved $257 just buy shopping at kroger! i too struggle with back issues, my back uncomforably clicks when i walk and its VERY irritating. i have three jobs. I am a Chiropractic assistant M-F, a server at TGI Firdays on the weekend, and a life insurance examiner in my spare time and on lunch breaks. finding extra time, energy and motivation is difficult, espeacially since my boyfriend likes the night life, i typically am lucky if i get 4 hours of sleep a night.

i fully beleive that if you put your mind to it, you can over come any obstical that stands in your way! even though i have 3 jobs, i brought home a mere $13,000 last year, and still managed to save some money for a new car!

since joining sparkpeople, i have been more motivated than EVER! this site reallly works as long as you use it the way that it is intended! good luck with your walking routine! remember to start off small, and work your way up! even if its just down the street and back the first day, gradually throughout the week workup to around the block, then next week walk 2 blocks and eventually you will be walking miles a day!

MOTHEROFAVALON SparkPoints: (894)
Fitness Minutes: (585)
Posts: 2
4/4/14 4:27 P

I am 43 single mom of 4 Adult children. I graduated with a BS in Environmental Biology, Native American Studies, and Geography. Just before graduating I was in a car accident that has damaged my back enough to cause me not to be able to find work in my field. However, I am not disabled (not by gov standards) Since then I have gained about 100 lbs. I fight depression mostly due to financial issues. Last August I had to give up my home I shared with 2 of my children. I am currently staying with a friend.

I stay busy but not necessarily active (at least not on regular basis). I am secretary and vendor coordinator for a local powwow. On the board for a local Veteran community agency. I am a High Priestess and ordained minister of a coven and part of a large pagan community. I provide around 60 hours a month daycare for my 2 1/2 yo grandson. I own and run a craft business mostly providing custom work.

Even with a business and the daycare I currently earn less than $400 a month. Due to this I receive government assistance with food. Trying to eat healthy is difficult on $160 a month. No not impossible just difficult. I am starting on Monday to walk daily. I currently only walk 2-3 times a week. I also am a gardener and this year will be able to grow more food which should make a big difference in being able to eat healthy food as well as getting exercise.

Hopefully buy using SparkPeople I can do a better job of keeping track of my food, exercise and water. I look forward to growing (smaller) in this community.

Edited by: MOTHEROFAVALON at: 4/4/2014 (17:19)
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