Thursday, October 31, 2013


Online Bible Study:  A Confident Heart by Renee Swope

This weeks assignment:  Share a #MovingForward story...

About two years ago I got a devastating call from my mom.  We argued, then her last words to me were, "I'm gracefully bowing out as your mother".  This was by far, over everything devastating that I had ever been through, my all time moment of brokenness.  I had just had a child of my own two months before.  My mom was there for the birth of my son and, without going into all the details, it's fair to say that my hospital experience was not a good one.  What was supposed to be the most precious moment of my life became just the opposite.  My mom shared with me afterwards (in the phone calls to come) that she felt the same.  Like always, there are two sides to every story.  Words were said, feelings were hurt, and ultimately it was the last straw and the end to our relationship. 

Prior to that devastating phone conversation, I had written my mom a letter.  I felt like I had to get all my thoughts down on paper.  I didn't want to just send her a letter though.  I wanted to actually talk to her in person.  I wanted to make sure she knew how much I loved her but that there were things that bothered me about the hospital visit as well as things that we had been through in the past.  My husband, new born son, and I went to her house one day so I could read her the letter.  I got everything off my chest that day, then we hugged, visited for a little longer, then  my family and I left.  I heard from my sisters later that day that my mom shared the letter with them as soon as we had left.  She told them how upset she was with what I had said.  I was really saddened to hear this because that was not the reaction she had given me.  Nor was it ever my intent to make her upset.  My intent was to get some things off my chest and find a way we could start over and try to build a healthy relationship.  The letter ended up being very hurtful in her eyes.  So hurtful that she didn't even want to be my mother anymore.

Over these last two years I've texted and called her in an attempt to mend things.  I also saw her once at my sisters high school graduation and I apologized to her in person.  However, none of those attempts have been received.  I've thought long and about this and I've prayed over and over.  I've hoped that God would give me a sign or tell me what I should do to make this right. 

These last two years have been tough.  I went through mourning the loss of her.  My poor husband has had to listen to me cry and vent about it too many times.  Even to this day, I get very sad and I miss her, but God has been working on my heart.  My faith in Him has grown even stronger as little by little I have grown stronger.  He has given me the strength to pick myself up and #MoveForward.  I still have hope that one day our relationship can be mended and we will be a part of each others lives, but until then, I will have to keep moving forward.  It's so important for me not to live in the past or dwell on what has happened.  Doing that would never make anything better.  In fact, it would just hinder my spirit and ability to be a happy person, a good wife, a better mom.  So I will continue to hope in the Lord, have faith in Him, and #MoveForward!!!   

  P31 OBS Blog Hop

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Yogurt Parfait

Simple to make and great for on the go...

- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup natural almonds
- 1/2 cup fresh berries

Nutrients:  254 calories, 17g carbs, 14g fat, 19g protein, 10g sugar

My Go-To Protein Shake

If I don't have time to prep my breakfast or mid-morning snack, I'll quickly whip up a shake before I head to work.  It's also a good alarm clock for my babies at 6:00 am (my son is NOT a morning person either, haha)!  This shake has everything I need... a carb, a protein, and a healthy fat.  The ingredients have been adjusted to meet my macros.

- About Time Whey Protein Powder (right now I have vanilla but I LOVE the birthday cake flavor!)
- 1 cup Almond Milk Unsweetened Vanilla
- 1/2 banana
- 1 tsp Marantha Creamy Almond Butter
- 1/4 cup Chobani Nonfat Plain Greek Yogurt
- 1/4 cup Bob's Red Mill Rolled Oats
- 1/2 cup ice

(I also add 1 TBSP of flaxseed and 1 TBSP of chia seeds if I have it on hand)

Add all ingredients to the Magic Bullet and blend until smooth.

Makes 1 serving
Nutrients: 313 calories, 35g carbs, 9g fat, 27g protein, 11g sugar

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Caloric Intake Guide

Let me start by saying that I am an average, ever so busy, working mom.  I'm not training for anything, I'm not a fitness competitor, nor am I a model preparing for a photo shoot!  I do my best to live a healthy lifestyle day to day.  Some days I'm better than others...and on those days I have a well thought out grocery list, I batch cook (without rushing), I get a good workout in, and I track my food on myfitnesspal (my username is lindsaylea78).  On other days I go to the grocery store without a list, I scramble to batch cook for the week on Monday nights in between cooking dinner for the family and tending to the kids, I miss my workout, and I can't find the time to track my food.  What can I say?  I'm normal! BUT, when I do have a bad week, and I start over with a clean slate come Monday morning, I like to know what I need to do to get my body where I want it to be.  I never knew there was such a science to calories!  I owe everything I've learned here to James Wilson.  Here is the caloric intake guide that I follow:

When I don't feel like counting calories, I use the palm-and-fist rule:
- Carbohydrates will be the size of your fist when prepared
- Proteins will be the size of the palm of your hand when prepared
- Fats will be one handful

Formula to calculate caloric intake:  Body Weight multiplied by 10  and add 300.  This is based on your current weight.  For example, my current weight is 110, so 110 x 10 + 300 = 1,400.  My caloric intake should be 1,400 on rest days (if I wanted to maintain my weight).  To increase muscle (which is my goal) you need to increase your calories by 250-500 on your rest day.  To decrease body fat, eat 250-500 less than your given number.  *My caloric goal is to reach 1,700 - 1,900 on my rest days.

On the days I strength train, I also need to consume pre-workout and post-workout meals.  Typically I burn 250-400 calories (depending on the muscle group I train and if I incorporate HIIT).  Those calories should be split between the two meals.  For example, during my workout I will burn 400 calories so my pre-workout meal should be 200 calories and my post-workout meal should be 200 calories.  *My caloric goal is to reach 2,100 - 2,300 on my workout days.

Macros ratio:
 My goal is to hit 40% carbs, 40% proteins, and 20% fats.  Here is the breakdown of grams based on 1,700 calories consumed on a rest day:

Grams per day:
- 170g of carbs
- 170g of proteins
- 38g of fats
- 30g of sugars

Portion size per meal (6 meals per day):
- carbs: Meals 1-4 = 38 grams and Meal 5 = 18 grams
- proteins: Meals 1-6 = 28.33 grams
- fats: Meals 1, 2, 3, and 6 = 9.5 grams
- sugars: Meals 1-6 = no more than 5 grams at each meal

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Psalm 36:7

Online Bible Study: A Confident Heart by Renee Swope

This weeks assignment: Psalm 36:7 ~ Unpack the verse for this week and share what I've learned through "verse mapping".

Defining Priceless:

Invaluable – Precious – Not Measureable
- It’s so precious that it cannot be determined.

Defining Unfailing:
Infallible – Constant – Never Ending
- It’s without error or fault.

Other Translations:

How precious is thy loving kindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge under the shadow of thy wings. ~ Psalm 36:7, ASV

Your love is a treasure, and everyone find shelter in the shallow of your wings. ~ Psalm 36:7, CEV

What this verse means to me:

I attended an ACTS Retreat in September 2010 and the verse we lived by for the weekend was:

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. ~Isaiah 40:22, NIV

I feel like these versus go hand in hand. I had been bottling up so much inside until I went on that retreat, things that happened in my childhood, failed relationships, and many mistakes I had made through the years. On that retreat I was able to open up my eyes and my heart to the Lord. I realized that He had been by my side all my life and through all my moments of despair. I had made so many wrong choices that I wondered how he could ever love me, accept me, and forgive me. He was there all along and all I needed to do was accept Him! On that retreat I put all my worries, struggles, hopes, and fear in Him. In return I developed a relationship with Him. He gives me unconditional love, unfailing love. I’ve been living an abundant life since I’ve chosen to soar on His wings and I know He will keep me safe in His arms (His wings) in those moments of despair… just like He’s always done for me in the past.

In my highest moment, my darkest day, He will protect me. His love is PRICELESS!!!

  P31 OBS Blog Hop

Motherhood & Discipline

At Bible Study last night we had a guest speaker and she covered the following topic - God’s Vision for Motherhood: Discipline and Heart Transformation.  This was such a great discussion and I needed to hear it.  I grew up in a very strict home and was disciplined often.  I grew afraid of my mom very early on and it shaped my adolescence.  I became a liar at a very young age because I was so afraid of “getting in trouble”.  My mom’s discipline was harsh (in my opinion).  It involved yelling, spankings, getting grounded for weeks…I even remember it getting so bad that at 10 years old I wanted to run away.  I made it to the end of our neighborhood and the whole time I was wishing my mom would chase after me, hug me, and tell me that she was sorry for being so hard on me.  She chased after me alright, and when she caught up to me, I was in much deeper trouble than before. It was a lose-lose situation.  To this day my mom and I have an estranged relationship.

I’ve always told myself that I’m going to do things differently when I have kids.  I want them to love me, respect me, and feel comfortable coming to me for anything.  With my son turning 2 a few months ago, we’ve reached the stage of needing to enforce discipline and I want to do it through my heart and as a Godly mom.

Train-up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. NKJV Proverbs 22:6

I’d like to share a few key points that I learned from the class…
- What is discipline?  It’s an opportunity to instruct my children and point them to Christ.  It’s not about me, my agenda, my feelings, my desires, or my reputation.  It’s about God’s glory and the eternal destination of my children’s soul.  When my children disobey me, they are running from Christ and rebelling against Him; therefore, the greatest danger for my children when they misbehave is not my anger or displeasure, but it’s losing their soul.

- Discipline is my opportunity to evangelize my children and explain the Gospel.

- Like Oil is to Water… Anger is to Discipline (they don’t mix)

- Parents must be Tender… Children must be Obedient

- Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, for man’s anger do not bring about the righteous life that God desires.  ~James 1:19-20

- Children learn our ways. If we are angry, they will be angry.

- Discipline and correction should be delivered in the following ways:  be their teacher, be humble and have gentle at heart, be compassionate, loving, tenderhearted, and courteous.

- Treat your children as you wish to have been treated as a child (this one really hits home with me).

- Build my children with Godly characters so that they have less bad behaviors.

How can I achieve good behavior?
- Pray for my children to be teachable and tender-hearted towards God, His Word, and me.  Ask the Holy Spirit to produce true repentance and a desire for holiness in my children’s heart.

- Saturate my children with the Word of God.

- Teach my children character traits and their opposites (liar vs. truthful, anger vs. self-control)

Here are some books that I plan to invest in:
- Character: Crossroads of Character: Learning to Make Wise Choices by Kate Boyer Brown and Marilyn Boyer (This book I actually won out of the drawing during class last night)

- Prayer: The Power of a Praying Parent by Omartian

- Manners: Manners Made Easy for the Family by Hines Moore

- Toddler Discipline: 8 Tools for Toddler Discipline by Dr. Sears

My personal goals as a Godly mom are to:
- Be a 1 Corinthians Mom

- Teach through the heart

- If my discipline is ever too harsh, that I will ask my children for forgiveness

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Protein Pancakes

I'm excited to share my first recipe! I'm a member of a fitness group on Facebook and one of the members graciously shared her Protein Pancakes recipe. I've tried a few recipes before but I've never liked the taste. I love this one! They are delicious, packed with protein, and easy to make.

Here is a picture of one of the perfect little pancakes. I'm having this at work this week as my mid-morning snack (or Meal #2). As my topping, I added 1 TBSP of this yummy peanut butter. It may not be the "cleanist" PB, but the price is really reasonable and I don't think the ingredients are too shabby!

- 1 cup uncooked rolled oats
- 1 cup fat free cottage cheese
- 1 cup liquid egg whites
- 1 scoop vanilla protien powder
- 1 TBSP vanilla extract
- 1 TBSP cinnamon

Add all ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. Grab just over 1/2 cup of batter and cook until done.

Makes 5 servings
Nutrients: 160 calories, 16g carbs, 2g fat, 17g protein, 3g sugar

Thursday, October 17, 2013


Online Bible Study (OBS) - A Confident Heart by Renee Swope

How I define His perfect love for me:

I was able to relate to Sam’s story since I have also been married multiple times not to mention the numerous failed relationships in between those marriages.  There was infidelity and abuse in my first marriage and once again infidelity and lies in my second marriage. Going through multiple divorces made me feel like a total failure. I’ve always asked myself, “what is wrong with me?” and “why can’t I have a healthy, lasting relationship?”. I could blame it on the environment I was raised in, seeing divorce and failed relationships throughout my family…and that may very well be, but what I never did was turn to God during those times. I’ve always believe in Him, of course, but I never had a relationship with Him. I never thanked Him for the good things in my life or what He did for me. I knew He was there, but I didn’t know how He was working in my life until now. I’ve remarried, and now that I have a relationship with Him, I know that He is with me and my marriage every day.

A few months after I was married to my husband now, I decided to go on an ACTS Retreat. It was there that I saw clarity. I spoke to God and He spoke to me. I confessed my sins to a Priest and he told me that he would pray for me, but he couldn’t provide a blessing for my new marriage because I didn’t have an annulment from my first marriage. This devastated me. So when I returned back into the real world (versus the sanctuary of the retreat) I put a lot of focus on getting an annulment. It was a painful and long process. Months went by, a year went by, and it got to the point where I felt like I was never going to be granted an annulment. I thought that was my answer so that I could move on and have a successful and blessed marriage with my new husband.

My husband and I had been going through a rough season and I reached out to my sister and a friend regarding the Baptist church. We were recommended a church to attend and I felt an instant connection with it. My family was welcomed into the congregation with open arms. Within 9 months of attending the church I was Baptized (I had been Baptized as a baby in the Catholic Church), both my children were dedicated, then, my annulment was granted. Just by attending service, being a part of a Bible Study, and serving when we were called, it opened my eyes to all God has to offer me and my family. He has made our marriage and family so much stronger. I’m just so thankful I reached out to Him when I did. He has changed my life forever. He showed me His perfect love when my annulment was finally granted. All I had to do was follow the path He made for me.

  P31 OBS Blog Hop