Saturday, March 21, 2015

Whole 30 Diet//

Lately, I am still feeling really tired and unhealthy, even with all of the new vitamins, exercising daily and healthy foods that I have been eating, nothing seems to help. I have been doing some research and realized that with my current symptoms, I am most likely having food allergies to gluten and soy. I feel like this is the reason that I am not losing weight and feel tired & puffy all of the time; so I have decided to start the Whole 30 diet- which is similar to the Paleo Diet.  For the next 30 days I will be eliminating all grains, soy, legumes, dairy, sugar and alcohol from my diet. 

I have already found some great recipes and some blogs that I can follow so that I can keep myself accountable + motivated. I am going to need all of the motivation that I can muster, especially with eliminating some of my favorite foods like cheese and wine. But honestly, if it helps me feel better + lose some stubborn lbs, then it will be worth it! 

Tomorrow, I am going food shopping to stock up on gluten-free and whole foods, at this point, I barely have anything to eat in my pantry! I am very excited to start this journey and will hopefully start to feel better within the first week. I will come back here weekly to update my progress and any changes that I see.

Wish me luck!!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Emotionally Spent//

“Sensitive people are the most genuine and honest people you will ever meet. There is nothing they won’t tell you about themselves if they trust your kindness. However, the moment you betray them, reject them or devalue them, they become the worse type of person. Unfortunately, they end up hurting themselves in the long run. They don’t want to hurt other people. It is against their very nature. They want to make amends and undo the wrong they did. Their life is a wave of highs and lows. They live with guilt and constant pain over unresolved situations and misunderstandings. They are tortured souls that are not able to live with hatred or being hated. This type of person needs the most love anyone can give them because their soul has been constantly bruised by others. However, despite the tragedy of what they have to go through in life, they remain the most compassionate people worth knowing, and the ones that often become activists for the broken hearted, forgotten and the misunderstood. They are angels with broken wings that only fly when loved.” -Shannon L. Alder

“The people you think are the happiest are usually the saddest; that's because they see more and feel deeper than others do. They are the sensitive and they see beyond the veil of what's tangible and what's not. They wear no masks and can see through the masks of others. The sensitive to life are few in number, which is why they feel so alone...because they are all alone.” - Donna Lynn Hope

Those two quotes, explain who I am perfectly. To say I've had a rough few days is an understatement.. I'm not posting this via Facebook like I normally do, because I really don't want to invite people to read this, because it's such a sad post but I just need to get some things off my chest. I want so badly to be this happy and positive person. I hate feeling sad or burdening others with my issues but there is so much sadness in my heart that it's really hard to hold it inside.

The first of this week, my sister messaged me after over 3 months of not talking- asking how I was doing and we ended up talking back and forth. I tried to explain to her how hurt I was from the things her and my other siblings had put me through- several of my family members had spread malicious rumors about my marriage and it cut me to the core. I have always been on one side because I am extremely different (they have never accepted me) and they are on another side-  I went through being verbally attacked & made fun of by siblings and their friends,and all of my family sat back and allowed it to happen.

I remember when our dog, Roscoe was paralyzed and I went to visit my Mom on a Friday after work- my brother came in and my Mom told him that he couldn't hug me because I had Roscoe in a baby sling and Roscoe wouldn't like it because he was very overprotective of me. My brother said, "let him bite me and I will knock that dog in the head." Anyone who knows me, knows how much I loved Roscoe and on top of it he was paralyzed and had been depressed. I don't know if you have ever been around an animal when they are depressed but it's heart-wrenching, especially when you can't do anything to take away their hurt. I responded back, if you touch him, it won't be pretty. I will always stand up for anyone being mistreated. But it didn't stop there, my brother launched into an attack towards me and my Mother sat there and never said one word. She didn't try to tell him to stop, or even try to diffuse the situation- I had to sit there with a sick dog in my arms and defend myself. I held myself together, not crying, until he walked outside and I broke down crying -my Mother didn't come to comfort me, she just let me cry. Just like right after Roscoe had died, I started crying at her house and she wouldn't hug me- she didn't say a word.  She is the only Mother I have, but I don't feel loved or cared for by her and I have always had this huge void, not feeling loved. I feel alone, abandoned and rejected- my heart will probably always be broken knowing that I have this big family, but never truly feeling loved.

My sister and I continued to talk, and as always, she turned the situation around on me- everything was conveniently my fault and in her eyes I owe the entire family an apology. The only thing that I did was withdraw when several of them kept attacking me and my husband- I just couldn't take the abuse anymore. I was so shocked that after being the one who has been attacked over and over- that in her eyes I owed an apology instead of the other way around. I thought that talking it out would help me heal and that she would understand how deeply hurt I was but instead she just kept making jabs at me the entire conversation just to twist the knife more. Not once, did she ever really listen to what I had to say, it was all about her being right. For me, it's about being happy- I don't care who's right. Just acknowledge others feelings, apologize and move on. But she wouldn't give me that much- in some ways I feel that gives her the power to keep me in pain, knowing that we couldn't work things out. So now I will continue to feel tortured and guilty and take all of the blame.

I ended up being really upset by the things that she said, having to hold back tears until I got home today and I just broke down crying. I asked my husband- Why do they want to hurt me so badly? What did I ever do to them? I have always been there for them in their darkest moments and never tried to hurt them. Sometimes, it sucks being the person that I am because I always take the blame and give everyone chances upon chances even after they hurt me one too many times. I know that I am too compassionate, but I also love that side of me. I think it's extremely sad that people would take advantage of someone that gives all of their heart and love, just because they know that person will try to keep the peace and always see the best in others. It makes me want to crawl back into my shell and not allow anyone else in my you know how hard it is to trust someone and to truly discern if they truly love you or just want to use you? It's hard for me, because I have dealt with this all of my life.

Honestly, even now, I feel sorry for my family because I feel that by telling them that I can't be around them any longer is hurting them. I never want to hurt anyone, it breaks my heart right now to even think about one of my siblings in tears. I worry more about them than I do myself-but at one point, do I finally put myself first? If they would apologize and promise to stop hurting me, I could accept it and work towards a healthy relationship. But after our conversation, my sister ended up hurting me even more with her words. Even through 2 days of going back and forth trying to work through things, not once did I say things to try to hurt her- I know that once  words are spoken that they can't be retrieved. I have experienced how deeply words hurt and I don't want to be guilty of doing that to another person.

The worst part is, that I truly miss my little nieces and nephews- that really breaks my heart into little pieces..if they have any ammunition, that would definitely be it. On the other hand, I don't believe that God expects me as a Christian to take constant verbal and emotional abuse- it just pulls me down and makes me focus on the wrong things. Today, I am just emotionally drained and need to not think for a while. I have to put it all in God's hands and I will be praying for my family from a distance- that's all I can do for now...

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Reflecting Back//

I feel this way constantly//

Hello lovelies, hope that you are all having a great weekend! I have really enjoyed mine so far- got some things accomplished but also took some time out to relax. March is always the busiest & most stressful month of the year because we have our Annual Senior Living Expo + it's my birthday month + the boss's birthday month + Hands and Hearts Hoe Down Event. So yes, lots going on!

We had a great turn-out for our Senior Living Expo this year, it was a little stressful running around making all the little details were in place at first. Even when you delegate some things + organize every little detail, something is always bound to come up. I had been in contact with WALB news about coming out to film our event and Diana assured me that she was putting it on the calendar so I was very excited when they showed up! We had so much positive feedback from all of the vendors as well as the attendees, so a win-win overall! We went to Bacchus Wine Bar to Celebrate and had a great time- I think I was hugging everyone and telling them how much that I loved them. I tend to get really lovey when I drink, oops...

I've been trying to work really hard to get healthy & fit, especially with several events coming up. I have been going to go to the gym daily including Saturdays. I also just started taking some new vitamins- bee pollen, antioxidant, magnesium- so I am curious to see how they benefit me.

This weekend the hubby and I planted a small container garden - yellow squash, zucchini squash, cherry tomatoes, better boy tomatoes, ichiban eggplant, bell-peppers, cucumbers, lavender, basil, parsley and lemon thyme. We have always had a garden every year, so I'm excited to have one this year! It was the perfect weekend to be outside enjoying the beautiful weather and I am indoors 90% of the time so I was happy to be outdoors//

I also made soy candles from all of my old candles,did some laundry, made the hubby some requested beef stew & cleaned around the house while I listened to some Rick Warren sermons. I even made time to tan & read almost an entire book- it was so nice to just sit still and relax, something that is extremely rare for me.

On a completely different note. This evening, I was listening to one of my favorite christian songs-"Abandoned", by Brian & Jenn Johnson while I was typing and I saw the sun setting so beautifully to the left of me and I remembered back to the first of April 2014 when I carried Roscoe up a 24 foot ladder in my arms, so that we could sit atop the second floor of our new home. We sat there, him in my lap watching the beautiful view, the sun was setting and he was so happy soaking up the sunshine. Four days later, he passed away in my, I held him in my lap while I wrote this blog post- I still miss him, his kisses..following me around everywhere I went, but I know that God took him from me, because he has something bigger planned for my life...I never want to waste that.

Whatever reason that God decided to take Roscoe, I want him to use my life for something bigger. Sometimes, I feel guilty because I make mistakes and I get busy and I lose focus on what really matters in life and feel like I am not being a light to others or the best christian like I should be. I am not perfect, I make mistakes, but I do know that I love God with all of my heart and I genuinely love people and want to help others through their hard times and be there for them//

With all of that being said, I want to leave you with some photos of Roscoe, I know that he is in heaven right now with God surrounded by immeasurable love// Honestly, I feel like Roscoe is the lucky one, I wish I were there with God- this earth is just my temporary home and I can't wait to get to heaven to meet God and to see Roscoe again & hug him and give him kisses//

Picnic at Callaway Gardens//

Friday, March 13, 2015

My Birthday Week!!!

I'm actually over a week late with this post (my birthday was March 2) but better late than never, right?

I had to try the Pampelmousse with grapefruit, gin and elder-flowers- my new favorite!

I've been wanting to go to Front Porch Tally for a while now so my Mother in Law took me there for my birthday brunch- I had the omelette with goat cheese and crab- this place is a foodie's dream!
 I have officially found my new brunch spot// 

I was pleasantly surprised on Monday when these flowers + Birthday balloon showed up!
Via my boss and his lovely wife who also took me out for my birthday lunch to Jonah's & gave me a gift certificate for Sweet Grass Dairy//

These really weren't for my Birthday- but John bought these at Fresh Market & butterflies are my favorite!

My husband bought me a Vita-mix that I have been wanting (I sold my old Vita-mix)

A colleague came by & wished me Happy Birthday + brought me some beautiful flowers//

My boss surprised me with an office birthday party & he even made a 
key-lime pound cake that was the best I've ever had//

Me being my normal shy + awkward self//

My Mother in Law bought me these beautiful earrings + gave me Birthday money, 
which I plan to use to buy some dresses//

Another present from the hubby//

Organic Cabernet, soy candle, iPhone 5 case, Journal (all of my favorite things)

I honestly wasn't in the mood to celebrate my birthday in the beginning, but I ended up having a really great birthday week full of nice little surprises! 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Hello March!!

First of all, I can't believe it is March already!! I have to say, I am loving the warmer days that we are getting every now and then and just in time for my birthday month! I for one, am looking forward to Spring- one of my favorite times of the year!

This weekend has been so busy, but fun! Friday, my boss let me off of work at noon so that I could spend time with my Mom for my birthday. For my birthday gift, my Mom brought me some organic kale and three mason jars of local raw honey that she buys from a bee farm. She knows that I love healthy foods. We had a lovely time playing scrabble + cappuccinos before heading to DSW to buy my Mom some new shoes. When I was talking with her the prior week, she mentioned her feet hurting from her arthritis + she has no arch. DSW didn't have many options for orthopedic shoes, but we did finally find her a pair that she can wear when she walks for longer periods of time. She said that the shoes helped her feet felt much better, so mission accomplished!

After the shoe store, we took my Mom to Trader Joe's for the first time, but she ended up only buying some barley and a lentil + orzo mix. We went to Newk's for dinner and ordered a large salad + a five cheese gourmet pizza to share between the three of us. I had so much fun catching up with my Mom and taking her to some new places. One of my goals is to take my Mom to the beach and also McClay Gardens since she doesn't really get out much but she always enjoys herself when she does//

Today, I have been buzzing about doing dishes, laundry, organizing the kitchen cabinets, baking vegan, organic chai cupcakes. I even cleaned out my purse and my work bag & put henna color on my hair + washed all of my makeup brushes while I listened to some encouraging Rick Warren Sermons. I am getting ready to go downstairs and start organizing the garage some more while my husband works on the siding. I love days when I can get caught up on things//

//New Mattress pad + new pillows for better neck & head support
//Green Smoothies- new vita-mix
//Researched my recent health issues & the connection with environmental toxins and thyroid gland-  I didn't start feeling bad until I stopped using my organic nail polish & switched to nail polish with chemicals (more colors available). I got the first clue when I painted my nails before I went to sleep one night &the chemicals made it hard for me to breathe + gave me a migraine. I plan on discontinuing the use of nail polish + acetone-the chemicals are making me physically sick (issues with swollen glands, fatigue and anxiety).  I am hoping that this is going to help me feel much better.
I will be doing a post soon about toxins in our environment and how they can affect your immune system.

//Excited that next week we will be having our Senior Living Expo- we have been planning for about 4 months now. I was able to create a really nice gift basket for our vendor booth for our table giveaway. I will be so relieved once I see that we have a good turnout and also once it's over so that I can stop stressing about it and relax more. Plus, I have so much work to catch up on that has been pushed to the back burner because of the expo and not having enough time.

//I celebrated my Birthday all week- I ended up enjoying it, despite not being excited about it in the beginning// I will be posting pictures from my birthday celebrations in the next couple of days.

//Upcoming trip to Orlando, FL- IKEA, Pottery Barn and Anthropology- three stores that are on my wish list to visit!
//Upcoming trip to Savannah, GA-My husband has school in Savannah for 1 week. I haven't been to Savannah in a long time so I am really excited to visit!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

This is Life//

Hi Lovelies! I'm back feeling much better today- the last time I wrote, I was extremely stressed out and overwhelmed and felt the need to vent and get things off my chest. I have been doing better since then and have decided to just not worry about things, I can only do so much and what doesn't get done will just have to wait until I can get to it. I'm realizing that I am not superwoman and I can't do it all. I think we all go through times like these, so I am sure many of you can relate in your lives as well.  This is one of the reasons that I love to blog-  I feel like this is my safe place to say what I want without fear of being judged. So thank you all for reading (+ listening to me vent- sorry)!

I was able go to the gym on Friday and I worked out for 1.5 hours and relaxed in the steam room for about 20 minutes- it felt so amazing to be back in the gym! I am going to try to work out about 1 hour each day- the hubby can only work out upper body right now, so I am going to just take what I can get.

Speaking of my husband- he is pretty much off of the crutches- he is now walking, but trying to take it easy at first. We bought him some Dr. Scholl's inserts today because of his foot hurting and also some natural medicine to help with his pulled muscle and ease off of the hydro-codeine/narcotics. 

I also ordered some bee pollen to see if it will help with my allergies, I have never had allergies this extreme- lately, I am always tired and my face and eyes are swollen every morning (maybe because we live in the middle of the woods?). In the past, I would add bee pollen along with coconut oil, spirulina, etc. to my green smoothies, but I have gotten away from my healthy eating lifestyle. I told my husband that  I wanted a Vitamix blender for my birthday, so I hope green smoothies will be in my future soon!

I know that I said on my last post that I didn't feel like celebrating my birthday, but we have plans for my Mother in Law to take me out for a birthday dinner, so I am kind of excited. The hubby and I are going to wait on our trip to Orlando for furniture shopping until he can walk better. I'm just so happy that he can at least walk some now- I know that as long as I keep praying, things will only get better!

Hope that you are all having a lovely weekend!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Overwhelmed with Life//

February is quickly coming to an end in a few days and I don't really feel that I accomplished too much this month. Mostly because my husband had food poisoning one week then he got a cold (which he passed on to me) and he also pulled a muscle to the point that he could not walk at all, which caused us a huge setback on the house and getting in shape at the gym- two of my biggest goals for February.  I've cancelled my birthday party plans to go to the beach because he's not in good shape to walk. My husband is still on probation at work and wasn't paid for the 4.5 days he had to be out, so that has been frustrating as well. I'm not sure why everything is hitting us all at once, but I am going to just trust God that he has a reason for us to be going through all of this right now.

I have always had the ability to find the silver lining/blessing in any situation- the Doctor's visit didn't cost us much at all and the prognosis was positive. My husband was just told that he needed to rest and take the prescribed medicine- it could have been much worse. The other positive part was that we were both forced to rest- I am sure that God saw that we have been working ourselves into the ground and that was the only way that he saw that we would actually stop and rest. Also, I have been praying more because I have this extra time and I am usually always on the go. I want to start making more time for God. Nothing in my life is more important than spending time alone with him.

We were able to get a couple of things accomplished before things took a turn for the worse:

//Cleaned out half of the garage and donated 2 truckloads of things to a local charity that helps the less fortunate
//Wood Floors are finished
//Painted the last 3 interior Doors
//Two Doors are framed out with trim and molding
//Appraiser came out and it looks like we are good to go on Home Equity Loan
//House Insurance finally all straightened out
//Gym- we joined the first of February, but have only attended about 10 times

March Goals:
//Leave work stress at work- I have been feeling extremely overwhelmed lately, I take the stress home with me and I feel horrible for giving my husband the worst part of me instead of the best..When I get too overwhelmed I end up having anxiety + breathing problems at night//
//Have a successful 2nd Annual Senior Living Expo- I have been putting 150% into this Expo, so I am expecting an awesome turnout.
//Go to the gym daily (lose 5 lbs.)
//Eat healthier, more green smoothies, salads, more water, etc.
//Celebrate Birthday or move to a later date
//Buy new furniture at IKEA
//Put hardware on closet doors
//Do simple  housework- trim, molding
//Go on a weekend trip to the beach
//Clean out Garage more- donate more items
//Take time out in the mornings to talk to God before I start my day at work
//Purchase Juicer or Vita-mix

Being able to accomplish what we did before my husband got hurt, is a blessing as well. Things may seem rough right now, but I know that God has never let me down in life so far. One of our favorite bible verses as a couple is- "For I know the plans that I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future." As always, we will put our trust in him and know that everything is going to work out the way that he has planned//