cleaning up my act...

finally some snow! now it really feels like winter in the northeast!

...and now Jake knows why he should not leave his toys outside in the winter!

when a snowblower and a light saber collide...

I have taken on a few challenges this month.

My first challenge this month is for my health. I am not trying to get skinny. I will never be "skinny." 
I am trying to get healthy.

heart healthy!

At the age of 50 (which I will be in less than 3 short years), my mother was already obese, had diabetes, hypothyroidism, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and a heart attack. She smoked, she ate whatever, she didn't exercise--at all. That proved to be fatal for her. She had many complications from her diabetes and when she turned 70, she had to be placed on dialysis. Her kidneys in failure. Then she had a stroke. At the young age of 72, she passed away.

I don't want that for me or for my family. I would like to live to play with my grandchildren and my great-grandchildren...the Lord willing and the creek don't rise!

My first goal for this challenge is to work out, or just get moving, 4 days/wk. Whether that is at a gym or at home.
My second get healthy goal is to clean up my food intake. No, I'm not going to starve! I am just going to eat leaner and greener! and yes, I will still have my coffee! LOL! 

My third goal is to increase my H2O intake. I'm shooting for 80oz/day. 

that's just FOUR of these little babies :)

That's it. Not too crazy, right? 

My next challenge is for my spiritual health. 

I am taking on the Beth Moore study of the book of James. I have never done a Beth Moore study. She gives you a few levels that you can choose to shoot for...I chose level four. What that means for me is that I will:  
  1. attend the weekly class and watch the videos
  2. do the weekly homework
  3. hand write the book of James (this part I love!)
  4. read the additional articles in the study, written by Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick
this study started on Jan 11th and will run through May 9th
(BTW, there is one more level in this study...that is to memorize the entire book of James! I really don't feel like I could tackle that at this point in my life, although it would be a most excellent challenge, I'm sure!)

For my spiritual health, I will also maintain my everyday Bible reading, prayer, and worship. (I know this might seem silly, but I worship the Lord in song while I do my dishes every night! Try it! You just might like it.)

A third challenge for this month is my financial health.

This will prove to be the toughest, I'm sure. Because this involves my whole family, not just me. 
We will need to start living below our means to clean up our debt and eventually work towards financial peace. We will try to accomplish this through the Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey.

Oh no! Does this mean my hair will have to suffer and return to it's "normal" gray color? I certainly hope not! (and neither does my stylist! hahaha!)

I think that's enough to start the year off with a BANG!

Other happenings this month already...

  • Nick took on a spelling bee that included 4th, 5th and 6th graders. He came in THIRD!

  • Nick had his expanders removed; and Stephen is having his put in next week.

the scientist

  • our "exploding volcano" experiment fizzled. 
I got a flat tire by running over a HUGE bolt; that took $150 out of our budget.
My car also needs a new catalytic converter....the parts alone took out another $900 our of our budget. Not to mention what it will cost for someone to do the work. 
Our new heating system is completely installed and running well! finally! (we will never have to buy another drop of fuel oil again--EVER!)

...and Jacob cannot wait for the first weekend in February! Temple Baptist Church will be having their annual LOCK-IN at the YMCA in Clifton Park! Since Jake is in 1st grade, this will be his first ever year that he can go! woohoo! what that means for me...I have to go too! I'm not looking forward to staying up all night! But it's a family thing now...


  1. The Beth Moore Study sounds great. You will like Financial Peace. We went through it back in 2006 and will be meeting up with our accountability partners soon to help us both get back on track. I'll keep you in my prayers that you will succeed in your goals!

  2. I think your goals are reasonable. I need to drink more water.
    Ohhhh, Jake is going to have a blast! Drink plenty of coffee momma!

  3. Sounds great Mare! Praying for strength and discipline to follow through!

  4. Sherry...I know Jake will have a blast! I'm gonna need about 4 pots of coffee! hahaha!
    Liz...thanks sweetie! I can always use prayers and encouragement!

  5. Wonderful list, Mare! I love how you organized it, and your photos enhance your post so much. Your goals are definitely attainable, especially, as you reminded me so sweetly, with the Holy Spirit :)
    Big bummer about the car $$ but glad to hear the heater is running well.
    Thanks for never fail to make me smile and make me think. Love ya!!


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