Saturday, October 16, 2010

21 Day Challenge

I may end up regretting this, and I feel a little silly talking about it here, but I'm just letting y'all know here that I'm starting the 21 day challenge tomorrow (and if you hear Jason laughing it is not your imagination because I start these new 'challenges' almost monthly)!  The reason for making this 'big announcement', is in the hopes that doing so will hold me accountable!  

And what is the 21 Day Challenge, you ask?   Well, it's something I've kind of expanded on from this book:

This book we bought several years ago and it has some really good workout routines that you can do with just a few free weights or if you go to a gym, they have workouts for nautilus machines.  But the part I end up using the most is the 21-day kickstart routine.  For 21 days straight you do either a free weight or cardio routine for 21 minutes.  Each week, the reps and sets increase a bit as do the weights.  It's intended to jump start a new workout routine that will stick and I've found that if I do get through the 21 days, I'm much more likely to continue the workout for months!  And then I fall off the bandwagon due to illness or vacation or laziness but still, this is the one I keep coming back to. In conjunction with the workout, I really like the Livestrong Calorie Counter App for the iPhone: 

This app has almost every food item imaginable out there - from restaurants to brands you find in the grocery store.  You can customize it so that it will calculate how many calories you should eat per day in order to lose 1 to 2 pounds a week.  I was never into counting calories but this is so easy because I usually have my phone handy, and it does all the adding and calculating, so it's easy to stay on track!  And here's the best part: it works!  If I stick to the calorie guide and do my 20 minutes of working out, it's very easy to start shedding those stubborn pounds!  While my goal is not to lose a lot of weight (just about 10 pounds) I do want to start eating healthier and get a good workout habit going.

But wait, there's more!  Not only will I keep up with my exercise and good eating habits, but in the next 21 days I will...

1.  Catch up on my 6 months of overdue paperwork!   
2.  Ride Tommy & Midnight 4 times a week
3.  Work with the other ponies on the ground to establish a good foundation and in particular, get Ginger over her needle shyness!

I could go into more detail about those three items but I'm afraid any readers I have might drop off dramatically ;-)

I feel like I've been in a rut the last several months and I'm really craving some discipline.   There are a few things that can throw me off - like rain!  Which we definitely need but if my arena is flooded out, it will make working with the horses more difficult!  The forecast for this week is calling for rain at least 3 days of the week so we'll see how far I get!  Or if one of the girls is sick (which has been the case the last 10 days).  

So if you see me, ask me how I'm doing!  Or leave me a comment here or shoot me an email -  I need the accountability!!! 

Until next time...

Friday, October 15, 2010

Video of the Week (Week 39)

This is one of the sweetest things I've seen in a long time.  Had to make it my video of the week.  However, as you may  notice, I'm having problems with it loading correctly.  I've tried everything I can think of.  Any suggestions from those more skilled in  Blogger?  

Here is a link to the video so you can see it!

Until next time...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Project 365 - Days 277-283

Lots of stuff happening this week.  If I could formally put in this request now, I would like 5 extra days this week.  Five extra days where time stands still and everyone freezes in time except for me and I catch up on all the laundry, bills, paperwork, cleaning, etc.  If someone could make that happen for me, that would be GREAT!  Thanks.

Day 277/365 - October 3

While not the best photo, it's pretty good considering it was taken with a point and shoot from 10 rows back!  We had Amelia dedicated at church finally!  Our church only conducts dedications two or three times a year and we had to cancel the first time so we were not going to let anything get in the way this time!  Ava was so excited to dress in her Chinese dress to support her sister and stand up front with us.  That is our wonderful pastor, Tom Pennington with his back to us.  We are so blessed to have found this church and our pastor.  

Day 278/365 - October 4

It was Grandma's last full day here and what a great treat to have Grandma read the girls a Fancy Nancy book?  

Day 279/365 - October 5

The notes continue in earnest from Ava.  This one was left next to a fairy with a broken wing.  I loved the multiple choice answer at the end. 

Day 280/365 - October 6

I wrote about this event a few days ago but had to make it the photo of the day! 

Day 281/365 - October 7

Ava started a high fever the day before and has been home now with said high fever going on 5 days now.  I felt bad for her and pulled out this paint by number I bought last year.  She spent the next few days working on it while the children's motrin kicked in.  Now that it's complete, she wants to give it to her teacher, Mrs. Boyers.  So sweet...

Day 282/365 - October 8

Look who stopped by to say "hi"!  The man in the white shirt is Mike Jungkeit (Jason's second or third cousin - I can't quite follow the family tree that far to know for sure) and Mike's son, Matt.  Mike was the team leader for the Dominican Republic trip Jason took earlier this year with Children of the Nations.  Mike and his son were in town for a special weekend and stopped by for a few hours to visit.  It was so nice of them to drive out to the ends of the earth to see us! ;-)  We had a great time visiting and hope they'll come back again whenever they're in this neck of the woods!

Day 283/365 - October 9

Belle continues to do well despite our colic scare earlier in the week.  I take her out to hand graze her for about an hour a day.  We usually go over to this spot in front of the arena because it has some really lush coastal that she loves.  I took her lead rope off for a bit so I could sit nearby but had to put it back on later because Belle decided a nice roll in the warm grass would be nice.  I saw the look on her face and the way she acts before she's going to roll and ran over to keep her up and snap the lead back on.  She had a nice time anyway ;-)

Until next time...

Sunday Snapshot (Ava)

Sometimes we wonder where Ava came from.  I mean we know where Ava came from but she is so different from Jason and I in some ways that we just have to sit back and wonder.  And shake our heads in disbelief.

Take for instance Cheer Camp.  The Varsity Cheerleaders at our local high school held a mini cheer camp for elementary and middle schoolers last Saturday.  They sent home a flyer from school advertising this event earlier in the week.  Normally, I would just toss it in the trash but Ava had seen it and wrote in big letters at the top, "Please?"  So, I discussed it with Jason and we decided she could go.  She is, after all, our little spirit girl.  

So, Saturday afternoon arrived and Ava entered the gym to 30 or so other little girls and a handful of the varsity cheerleaders.

Now, if this had been me at her age, I would have turned around running out the door never gone in the first place (and neither would Jason - if he had been a girl)!   Ava saw a few of her friends, but was content to just enter the circle next to some strangers, grab their hands and join in on the fun.  They were taking turns going into the middle of the circle to do cartwheels, round-offs, back flips, etc.  Ava doesn't really know how to do any of these (now, she could do a plie, rond de jambe, or grand battement to beat the band thanks to 4 years of ballet!) but this was different.  Still, our little cheerleader did what she could and had a ball!  And oh yes, it helped that they were selling used cheerleading outfits out front and Mom caved and bought her one!

Later on, they broke into smaller groups to learn some cheers and routines.  You could hear Ava's gasp of excitement when they pulled out the pom poms!  And she was over the moon when she learned they got to keep them!!  

They are going to perform during the Homecoming Football game and Ava will be there with bells on (and a few pom poms and a color-coordinated hair bow).  

What can I say?  She is not like her homebody parents but I do envy her zest for life and unabashedly friendly personality.  This girl is unafraid and has never met a stranger.  And we are blessed to call her our daughter!

Ni Hao Y'all

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