Our Purpose

Welcome to our Healthy Habits forum, sponsored by Relishing Motherhood. We are kicking off our New for 2009 Challenge on January 12th. Leave a comment to join us.

And special thanks to our contributing bloggers, whose profiles and links appear in the sidebar.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Little Pick Me Up

I haven't ever shared a recipe on an blog before. Not because I am not a cook. I am. A pretty good one even. I just have not wanted to do that. Until today. And I don't know if this can really be considered a recipe, because it is really however you want to make it, but it's yummy and a guaranteed pick me up. Just ask my 1 year old:

Actually, these pictures do not do justice to breakfast this morning. This kid had smoothie ALL. OVER. HERSELF. She'd drain her little cup and then stick it out begging for a refill. "Please, sir. May I have some more?" (Name that movie.)

Green Smoothie:

1-2 cups of spinach

1-2 cups (or more) frozen fruit

2 Tablespoons honey


optional: a couple of tablespoons of flax meal

Blend it all up in the blender and serve. You can use fresh fruit and and ice if you don't have frozen.

My kids love this stuff. And it gets spinach in them. Spinach! And it's low-cal and refreshing.

Hope this gives you some great energy to keep on truckin' along in your exercise routine!

Monday, February 23, 2009

For Just One Week Update/ Free Point

For more info on For Just One Week, see Ice Cream's blog.

So, I didn't post an update last week because I hadn't achieved my goal of taking care of 5 things that I have been procrastinating. The problem is, I just kept on procrastinating those things, finding that I'd much rather blog, read or pick my toenails than I would file for the AFLAC payment from an injury Kimball had two plus years ago. I guess that's why it's been over 2 years. Sigh.

I do intend to get to the AFLAC thing as well as a tax thingy I've been putting off, but my official goal this week is something entirely different. We had stake conference this past weekend. I'm pretty sure that all of our participants are LDS and know what this means, but just in case I have some lurkers here, it's just a fancy word for a meeting of all of the members of LDS community. On Saturday evening, there is a meeting for the adults, then on Sunday morning there is a meeting for the entire family. Needless to say, as a mother of four young, energetic chidlren, I get a lot more out of the Saturday evening session!

One of the speakers on Saturday night said some things that triggered ideas and thoughts for me. I'm not sure that he actually talked about how prayer can help us become the people whom we want to become, but that's what I took away. And I set a little goal to myself for this week to schedule real, sincere, on-my-knees, prayers several times throughout the day when I know I'll need extra strength. I have been struggling more since I got pregnant with energy levels and shortness of temper, and I really want my children's homeschool experience (and mine) to be a positive one. So I set the goal this week to pray daily at the following times: 6:30 am, 8:45 am (right before we officially start the school day), at Bronwen's naptime, and around 4:30 pm, or just when I'm getting ready to start making dinner. And of course at bedtime. I know that it might be silly to schedule prayers, but I really want to call on the powers of heaven this week to make me stronger than I am by myself (and stronger than I am with a prayer in the morning and night). I want help to not get cross at my children, to see them as Heavenly Father sees them, to not crab at my husband, and to teach my children each day in the way that He would have me teach them. So there's my goal. I will definitely report back to you on how it goes.

Now, regarding the free point (I know that I tricked many of you into reading just to find out about it,) I'm actually talking about last week's. I'm wondering who would rather have an additional point as opposed to having a dollar shaved off their penalty. Leave a comment and let me know, preferably also sharing with us how the week went for you. I hope you were able to think outside the box on your exercise and try something new.

Gotta go--the baby just woke up from her nap.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Well, I just realized I missed yet another Friday post on here. You'd think I was busy with a husband and three kids or something! Three kids who I get to organize into cleaning the bathroom this morning. Yippee for me!

So, how's life? Everyone still with us? I am doing pretty well with the excercise--I've gotten into a decent groove with that. But just so-so with the reading. I am getting a little in every day, but not very deep or meaningful. It is hard to have even a few minutes of solitude to study in my very small house. So, many times I have to squeeze it in without much time for pondering it.

We recently had ward conference. Our stake president talked about how sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven. I have been thinking that as moms we sacrifice a lot. A. LOT. I know for myself, I wish I could listen more in sacrament meeting. Or study ahead more for the lessons in Sunday school. Or spend a whole lot more quality time on my knees and in the scriptures. But more often then not I spend that time taking care of my children and just squeezing in what little snips of reading and learning I can. But then at ward conference I was reminded that my sacrifice is seen, and it counts for something. And the sacrifices we make for our families and children will bring forth blessings. I have faith that the things I miss out on while wandering the chapel halls with my toddler will be returned to me in greater abundance. Because sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven.

And if one of those blessings happened to be a smaller jeans size, I would not complain one bit.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Thanks so much to everyone who commented on my last post. It is so good to know how you're doing. I think that we can draw energy from people like Debbie, who is ROCKING this challenge and getting great results. If you, like me, are struggling a bit to accomplish our goals, we also got to see that we aren't alone in that feeling. One reason for this forum is that we can reach out to give and receive support. Most of us in this world really need the help of a friend to do things that are hard.

A few of you posed questions and concerns in your comments that I'd like to address here. First of all , it is $25 per challenge to drop out. I know that's steep, but the point is to stay in the race. Joni, you aren't the only one having a hard time accomplishing this. We are so with you, girl! And I don't want this to cost you a fortune, either. I've been reflecting on this today, as many of you expressed concerns, frustration, or a sense of failure. I suggest that those of us who are struggling to fit in the exercise consider the following:

Sometimes we get stuck in a rut of what our exercise must look like. I have gotten into the habit of walking the track with a girlfriend 3 nights a week, which is great. The problem is that when it's raining, we bail. When I lamented this evening at dinner to my husband that it was raining again, he pointed out, "Don't you have a gym membership?" Duh! I was so locked into thinking that my MTW exercise was walking with Mandy that I didn't even think about alternatives. I actually ended up putting in a prenatal pilates DVD, which I had been meaning to try out for weeks, and it felt great to do something different. But it hadn't really occurred to me. In my mind it was walk or skip the exercise.

Our friend, Donna (I think--Donna, are you posting as Garbett Family?), has an issue that others of you might struggle with. She is just too busy for daily 30 minutes of exercise, at least at first glance. Donna, I suggest that you look for little ways to get in 10 minutes at a time during your day. Maybe that's taking a brisk walk during a "coffee break" at work, dancing crazy with your kids (it's amazing how 10 minutes of that will wear you out), or doing situps and pushups before you get in the shower. This doesn't have to be 30 consecutive minutes. Find something that works for you. You mentioned that you love jogging but can't find the time every day-- maybe you can schedule it in for twice in the week as a little treat for yourself, but don't give up on alternative forms of exercise.

I think for all of us it really helps if we think outside the boxes we have made for ourselves--the rules that don't actually exist about what our exercise needs to look like, what time of day it must take place, etc.

Also, I notice (not surprisingly) that everyone who is doing their scripture study is noticing an increase of the Spirit in their lives. Ask Heavenly Father to help you meet the exercise portion of the program. In my case, I need to ask Him to make me want it more, especially on the weekend. Ask Him to help you see ways to fit it into your day, or for the energy to do it when you just feel too tired. This is a righteous desire and He will help us if we ask.

You may have noticed that I haven't posted a report on my personal "For Just One Week" goal. That's because I've been procrastinating because I didn't accomplish it. So I'll give myself the same challenge for this week and report back to you all next Monday.

I hope that some of these ideas help. If anyone else has any thoughts or feedback, PLEASE leave a comment! It is so good to know that you are out there, that we are working on this together.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Bonus Point Offering!

Hello, fellow achievers! We are now entering Week 6 of our challenge--the second half. It is easy to lose steam once the novelty wears off, but let's keep each other going and motivated. I'm noticing lots of holes for last week--as in people who haven't entered any points at all! I'm assuming that half of you didn't suddenly stop exercising completely and that instead you've just stopped updating our spreadsheet regularly. Please take a moment to fill it out before the time gets away from you. It's much harder to be accurate when you're having to work from your long term memory!

How is everyone feeling about this? I'm offering a bonus point (added to your total) for each person who leaves a comment telling us how they are doing/feeling/looking etc. Have you seen any changes? What is hard and what has become automatic? (If you aren't a registered blogger, you can still comment as "anonymous". Just sign your name at the bottom of the comment so we know who you are.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Or as my 6 year old says: ValentiM'es Day!
Wow, the weeks go by fast! It's the middle of the month already.
And don't let any festivities you might have derail your goals like I have. (I do Weight Watchers. This week has derailed for me. But it sure has tasted good!)
While you are showering others with love and affection, don't forget the most important person to show love to is yourself. Be kind to yourself by staying on track and sticking to your goals. You gotta take care of and love yourself before you can show it to others!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

For Just One Week Update--Procrastination

Well, it is obvious that one thing I've been procrastinating is this post! You may remember that one of my goals for last week was to take care of one thing I was procrastinating every day. I was excited about the goal, but found that it wasn't realistic for every day--even every day in a week. My Mondays are absolutely swamped, and my list of things I was putting off partly had to do with taking care of things during business hours--thus, things that can't be done after the kids are in bed, after I've done my walk, and before I go to bed early! To make up for it, I tried to do more than one thing on the days when I could actually make time to check things off my list. Here are some things that I had procrastinated and that I accomplished this past week:
  • Filled out appropriate labels, packaged up, and dropped off at the UPS store some GapMaternity returns (they have to go back via mail if you bought them online.) If you know me at all, you know that I am postally challenged. These items had been waiting around to be sent back for at least 6 weeks.
  • Called Countrywide to check in on my mortgage, which is set to adjust this spring. Breathed a sigh of relief that it isn't changing.
  • Renewed my Ensign and Friend magazine subscriptions, which had expired in September. I have been reading them online, but it's not the same. Shocking that I let it go so long, I know.
  • Conquered my ironing pile. This may not have been paperwork related, but it was surely procrastinated. Now everything is ironed and hanging in someone's closet.
  • Got QuickBooks all caught up and reconciled for my husband's business.
  • Submitted a rebate.
  • Cleaned out my purse.
  • Made sand dough for our Roman Aquaduct project (I'd been planning that for three weeks.) Sadly, I still procrastinated making the archways for another three days and the dough was too crumbly to produce sturdy archways. Sigh.
My other goal was to stay off the computer until noon and until I had studied the scriptures. You'll notice on the spreadsheet that I read all 7 days--I couldn't bear to miss out on computer time. I did complete this goal, and am going to try to carry over the spirit of this goal without actually setting it again this week. We'll see how I do.

In this coming week, I will check off five things that I have been procrastinating for way too long. I will not procrastinate doing this until Saturday!:) I will also spend more time in the afternoons and/or Friday doing school things. We have been getting all the basics in, but I want to be sure that we are getting enrichment studies in as well. We will do at least one Valentine's Day craft, we will make those elusive Roman Aquaducts, and we will go birdwatching (weather permitting). And I will get in my five days of exercise--I only hit 4 last week.

How are your goals coming? I am really struggling to get in my exercise on the weekends (Friday-Sunday), even if I only need to exercise one of those days. Any suggestions on what's working for you?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..

Remember Nemo? And Dori? And Mount Wanna-hawk-a-loogi? (That part makes me laugh every time.)
Dori's motto is "just keep swimming, swimming, swimming." That's a good motto to follow.
"Just keep reading, just keep reading, reading, reading."
"Just keep walking, just keep walking, walking, walking."
"Just keep smiling, just keep smiling, smiling, smiling."
That Dori was one smart fish!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Checking In

I don't have anything remotely brilliant or deep to say, just checking in with everyone! It makes it easier to keep my goals if I make sure to check in more often.

I know I've said this before, but I'm so glad I'm doing this challenge. In the last couple of days especially, I'm feeling the blessings. I'm being given the energy to be a better mother, and the results in my children are nothing short of miraculous! These changes didn't happen right away. In fact, I had really been struggling for a long time, as anyone reading my last personal blog post will know. Suddenly doing more of what you should do doesn't always fix everything overnight. But since I've kept at this challenge I'm feeling more of God's inspiration in how to raise my children, and we are becoming a happier home. These last few days have been some of the best we've had together and I know I'm on the right track. My heart is very full and very thankful.

Is anyone else doing the "Just One Week" goal? I had plans to do it but keep forgetting to start. I should probably plan to start on Mondays since that's the day I tend to start everything off new. Gives me something to ponder on for these next few days...

Anyway, how's the exercise, scripture study, weekly goal going? I know we keep track on the clipboard, but feel free to share your thoughts with everyone and keep the support going!

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, February 2, 2009

For Just One Week Update

Well, another week has come and gone. Life passes us by so quickly, and if we don't write down our goals and commit to them, it's easy to grow older without growing any better. I, for one, don't mind my advancing age as long as I'm improving along the way, like an expensive wine or aged cheese. It's only when I stop to realize how long it's been since I've been talking about accomplishing something--without making any progress--that I begin to get discouraged.

The Book of Mormon tells us that "the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors." In other words, we don't get a do-over in the next life. We need to make this one count.

That's one reason that I am enjoying not only our exercise and scripture study 10-week challenge, but also Ice Cream's For Just One Week challenge. I can accomplish some of my smaller goals, or those that I'm just not ready for a long term commitment with, and try them on for size.

I had two goals for this past week: the first was to stay off the computer for non-school reasons until at least noon on school days. On the weekend, I was to be off the computer until I had exercised and read my scriptures. The second goal was to get more out of my workouts.

Well, I did accomplish my goals on school days, which was the most important to me. As I expected, it made a big difference in my ability to keep our school morning on schedule, to give my children my full attention, and to generally be more productive. On the weekend I did manage to stay off the computer until noon, but as for getting in my workout and scripture study first . . . well, that didn't happen. But I did get them in. The weekends can be pretty crazy around here, and I finally decided to just drop that part. Lame, perhaps, but I feel like I accomplished the PURPOSE of my goal--to spend less of my productive time on the computer.

In terms of getting more out of my exercise, I definitely did that this week. Most days I got in an hour instead of the minimum 30 minutes. I went walking several evenings with a good friend and we cruised around the track at top speed, clocking in over 3 miles each time, while gabbing away without the interruptions of kids. I got to my early morning spin class on Thursday, which is always a fantastic workout. Whatever I did, I pushed myself harder than I have been in previous weeks and it felt great.

This week, I want to adjust my goal for computer use a bit. It is: no computer (except school related) before noon AND before I've done my scripture study. I noticed that last week, I had several days when I was reading at bedtime and I just don't get as much out of it then as I do earlier in the day. I am not going to have exercise be a part of this, as some nights I like to exercise in the evenings and don't want that to penalize my computer time.

Additionally, every day I am going to take care of one paperwork-or-phone-call-related chore that I have been procrastinating. I have a stack of things by my computer, and sadly, at least one of them has been procrastinated for over a year. Yikes!

How are your goals coming along? Care to set an extra one for just one week? Leave a comment here or post about it on your blog and link back to Ice Cream's post. Don't let another week of your life pass you by without doing something to age well!