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Monthly Archives: December 2012

A Final Thought… 2012

I’ve been feeling very anxious lately.

I get very involved in the things I do. It’s in my nature to become, shall we say, obsessive sometimes.

Since changing my whole lifestyle, I have felt fantastic, and a bit scared about all of it. And because I’m scared that I’ll throw caution to the wind and let myself go, I over compensate and can obsess about my nutrition and exercise. Although this may bring a healthy body, it sure denies a healthy mind.

I need balance.

I’ve been thinking and talking with God a lot about this. And I am continually reminded that its not all about me. The world is full of hurting people who could use my attention more than myself.

Now I am all about helping yourself, but there comes a time when we all have to be others focused in order to get anything done, to make an impact. When you’ve done things for yourself long enough that they are habit, it’s time to move on. (Hopefully you’re doing good things habitually) I am not going to do my marriage, my relationships, humanity, the kingdom, or anything else any good when I am focusing on how good Katie’s thighs look, or what MyFitnessPal said my caloric intake was for the day.

Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it.

Luke 17:33

I am loosing my life by only focusing on myself. I am wasting time that could be much better spent helping others, pouring into people, gleaning from them. When I am no longer the center of attention, I get to see the rest of the world. There is so much beauty out there, I need to go live in it!

As if God hadn’t made it clear already, Andee Zomerman spoke today at church.
Her 2012 New Years resolution was to volunteer for those who were less fortunate than she in health and wealth. And by stepping herself to the side, she was able to do bigger and better things because of it. Check out her blog,The Nature of a Servant to be inspired.

Ok- with all that being said, my New Years resolution is to stay healthy physically, and mentally. I want to focus on others more and less on myself. I want to find that happy place called balance where I can care for my health and continually maintain and improve where I’m at, all the while not obsessing about it. And it will start by being others focused.

What is your resolution this year?


Right mindset

My brother recently sent us some Taiwanese food- I was offering them out at our party. After opening a bag of Peanuts and Sardines, I offered some around.

“I don’t eat legumes.”

We have a friend, who chooses not to eat legumes because they give him gas. Thankfully for him and the rest of us, he sticks to his choice. I’m sure it can be easier at gatherings and parties to say no to beans rather than chocolate… But there is a point to this.

He didn’t say “I can’t eat legumes.” Because, truth-be-told, he can. He is physically able to eat them. His mouth won’t seal shut at the sight of a pea or lentil. Often times when we say we can’t have something- we say it about things we really do want.
For example:
“I can’t have that cake.”
“I can’t drink.”
And more often than not, we say that with a sad face. We feel bummed out when the cake or beer or whatever is offered to us, because we can’t have it.
We are powerless, because we can’t.

But can’t is not what was said.
“I don’t eat legumes, chocolate, sugar, fried foods, beer, ect.”
There is some power in that don’t.
It means you can, but are choosing not to. It means that I have the power to say yes or say no. It means I am in control.

Change the way you think about a situation, and change the situation. Put yourself in the driver’s seat. Your addictions and temptations don’t have to control your life.

Merry Belated Christmas

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with your friends and family!

We had a really great season, filled with lots of friends and lots of family!

Gingerbread houses


And just like you can’t get away from the Halloween decorations in August, talk of New Years Resolutions is flying across the coffee shops and gyms!

Its crazy to note that over half of American’s will resolve to get healthy this year.  Sadly, however, only 20% of them will be successful.

I read a post that listed the top 10 reasons why people fail at dieting.  One of them was because of binge eating.  The author said…

“The way I see it, you have two options.

You can either:

  • (A) Binge eat – be happy now that you’re eating delicious food, but feel bad later after the guilt sets in.
  • (B) Eat a healthy snack instead – be sad now because you feel deprived, but feel happy about your good decision later.

Either way, you are going to be both happy and sad about your decision. But if you choose option (B), you’re going to look better tomorrow. So choose wisely!”


That is so brilliant!  We all need to consider this when we are faced with these challenges.

Another reason he listed was that because people are dieting, and not making lifestyle changes.

As you’ve probably read, this past spring, Randy and I started our own Health Coaching Practice.  Since then, we have been able to work with many wonderful people, helping them set and achieve their health goals.  We help our clients understand how to create healthy habits in their lives, and remove unhealthy ones.  And in doing so, they are changing their lifestyle instead of dieting.   It is such a blessing to be able to walk with someone as they regain hope, achieve dreams and create new realities.  Knowing the doors that health has opened for us, makes us excited to see what it will do in the lives of others.

With the New Year just around the corner, we know that over half of the resolutions set by American’s will be geared toward getting healthy.  Have you, or someone you know decided to make this a resolution this year? We would love to walk beside people who are ready to make health a reality in their lives.

If you’d like more information, please visit our website and fill out the side bar to be contacted for a free consultation.


Christmas Eating

Yesterday was the last day of school for the 2012 year.  The kids were loaded up with sugar cookies, hot chocolate and other goodies at their class parties.  We sang carols and genuinely had a really good last day.  The families at my school are so generous! THANK YOU!  I don’t think I’ve ever worked at a job where I’ve felt more appreciated by the people I serve.

When we were leaving school, a fellow teacher said she felt so sick from all the sugar she had ate.  I so remember feeling that way in years past.  And although it would have been great to have a cookie or a truffle, it felt great driving home not feeling sick!

And speaking of truffles, I looked at the nutrition facts on those puppies… 100+ calories and 20 grams of sugar each.  And no one can say that you just eat one!  I would eat that hole box if I even started!

Last night, my parents took Randy and I out for dinner at Portland’s oldest restaurant, Huber’s.

I had their Turkey Salad! It was delish! No need to have a pile of mashed potatoes and Spanish coffee.  I enjoyed seeing other people enoy it.  That was enough for me!


It feels so awesome to look back from where we started a year ago on this journey.  We’ve lost the weight, and kept it off.  But more importantly, my habits are changing.  Its good to not be a glutton anymore.

Changing Habits

People keep asking me why I’m still following a strict eating plan.

“You’re already sooo skinny!”

“Don’t you want to enjoy the holidays?”

“How long do you have to be on a diet?”

I cringe when I hear the word diet.  Its like a dirty word in our house.  Diets are things you do to get healthy, and then quit, and then do again, and then quit, and then do a different one and then quit.

But I’ve done that kind diet thing before.  And I quit.

However, I am creating a healthy diet.  Diet, as in what I am consuming on a day-to-day basis. I am focusing on using food as my fuel source, and I want to get the most bang for my buck. I want the best food, with the most nutrients, that my body will be able to use to run optimally, while keeping everything in order and in check.

This time, I am committed to changing my life, and not dieting.  I am reaching toward a goal of health, and not running from unhealth. I’ve come to realize that if I try and change something in my life because of something negative that is happening, I am far more likely to give up once the tension or stressor is gone.  But, when I am reaching toward a goal, ie: health, I must constantly strive toward it.  You’ve never really reached health.  You’re just always on the journey.

So these questions I get on a daily basis…

I have to be honest. I’ve been wrestling with them myself.  Why am I doing this? What have I got to loose if I eat a brownie? What is this all for?

I talked with a client today and helping her work through this same issue brought some new light to my own issues.  (I love talking with clients.  They help me more than they know.)

I’ve come to the conclusion, I’m not doing this to continue to loose weight- while that is happening, I am doing it because my habit are still forming and my mindset toward food is still not where it needs to be. I am committing to being strict with myself, because I know if I am not strict right now, I will fall right back into my old habits.

As a teacher, there is a slogan I’ve heard a lot: “No smiles until Christmas Break.”  Meaning, we have to use tough love with our students until they have the understanding of our procedures and authority.  We can not treat them as buddy-buddy until January, once that healthy relationship is established.

I am still working on establishing that healthy relationship with food.  So, I’ve got no smiles for it until… January… or when ever that day comes.
So…I am willing to wrestle a little bit longer- trusting I will come out the victor, rather than quit early and hang my head the looser.

Join me won’t you? In this fight to gain

Our bodies back
Our minds back
Our health back
For our friends
For our family
For our country

Because, in reality- I need to think about this affecting more than just me, or else it doesn’t matter as much.

Warm Showers

Today, Ncompass had its 4th annual Christmas Festival for the Homeless.  It was an amazing event.  We had over a hundred willing volunteers, a fully donated turkey dinner with all the fixings, 350+ sleeping bags, hoards of clothes and lots of people to be blessed.

It was so cold today.  And even though I had on 5 layers, it was hard to feel my toes and fingers.

When I came home, I immediately jumped in the shower.  And I was hit with the gratitude that I have a warm shower to come home to.

I have been trying to create balance in my life in the area of thankfulness.  I have high dreams and goals to reach toward, but I need to stop more often and be thankful for where I am and what I have.  The goals are important, very important.  But I am recognizing that without having gratitude for what I have been given and been able to do, I will never be satisfied when these goals are reached.  And I want my thankfulness to move beyond “I’m thankful I’m not in their shoes,” but to be thankful that I have the ability to serve, to reach out, to help, to be a light for people.


What are you thankful for?

Squirrels and Fish

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

~ Albert Einstein


I have spent many hours trying to become something I am not.  I have been living for others, for their goals, and for their dreams.  I have also been trying to create a life like someone else.  I have been trying to be a squirrel, when I am really a fish.  I am a great swimmer, but not a great climber.  And rather than being proud of my swimming, all I want is what that squirrel has – the ability to climb.

I am not a squirrel.

I can look up to others, and appreciate their abilities, their talents, their drive and spirit.  Just like the fish can admire the climbing abilities of the squirrel.  But rather than wanting to just be a climber, maybe what the fish is admiring (something I can learn from) is not the ability to climb so much as he admires the squirrels tenacity to get back up the tree once he falls down.

Instead of wanting what I don’t have that I see in someone else; instead of trying to make my life mirror that of another; instead of being someone I’m not; I need to be me.  I need to step into my strengths, my talents, my dreams, my ambitions, and live this life out.

“You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit.”

– kindergarteners

I have been given the life I’ve been give by a great God who has a greater purpose for my life than I can imagine.  He didn’t make me someone else, He made me, me.  And instead of throwing a fit about what I don’t have or can’t do, I need to embrace it and figure out how to make the best life possible with my abilities.  I need to chase after the desires in my heart with the strengths I’ve been given.

Love Does

I’ve had my mind blown by reading this new book, Love Does. Its a book full of short stories by a guy named Bob, and how he loves people through doing.  I don’t want to explain away the book because it has so many gems in it.  I will simply suggest, HIGHLY, that you too read it.

141800800-196x300To listen to a podcast click here.


Breaking up with Food

Wants vs Needs

This topic has come up a lot in the past few years.  Through book clubs, bible studies, women’s groups and inside my head. What are my needs and what are my wants.  It is so easy to proclaim what my wants are.  I could give you a list, but I wont.  But my needs – those are harder to differentiate.  I want things that I need, but I usually don’t need the things I want.

In dealing with my wantonness of food, I know I need food to survive – and it needs to be the right foods.  But then there are those foods I want just because I want them.  Like Cheetos! Well, not anymore at least.  But I have moments where I am ready to break something for this WANT inside of me, but I physically don’t need it.  Mentally… maybe, but I think thats really just my denied addiction talking.

With that being said – I had a break through it seems yesterday.  I was at a coffee meeting with other members of Ncompass and I left for a minute to use the ladies room.  And where all good thinking happens, I had a really great thought.  I said to myself “Wow!  Look at what you are doing with your life.  You are truly surrounding yourself today with what matters most.  You are making use of the oxygen in your lungs to do great things for Jesus, for yourself, for your family, and the world you live in. And today, you didn’t give too much thought toward what you really desired for dinner.  You made something that tasted good, was good for you, but rather than spending many hours dreaming and pinning over a meal, you got on with your day. ”  (it reminded me of times where you break up with old boy friends and you finally get to the day where you didn’t think about him at all that day.  Not a thought crossed your mind, other than the thought about not thinking about him.  It was freeing actually!)

When I walked out of the Thinking Room, I realized I had made it through my first day surrounding myself with what matters most.  Now I know there will be days in the future where I will think about and dream about dinner.  I enjoy cooking and eating, and there really isn’t anything wrong with that.  But in terms of the relationship break-up; I need to start treating food like a break-up where we are still friends.  Its going to take some time apart for healing to happen.  And time will come where we can be friends again.  But I can’t call Food anymore like I used to.  I can’t pick it up at 11:30 at night when I need a good cry.  I can’t depend on it for anything other than friendship.  We are not intimate anymore.  Food and I are just friends.  Food matters, it just doesn’t matter MOST!

Spicy Stir Fry

I am really starting to have an affection for Tofu!  Yes, I said it.  That spongy stuff that used to really gross me out as a kid – that I only remember eating once, during lent, when I didn’t eat meat.  But ever since having it at the salad bar at Whole Foods, I have found a new ingredient!

Another invention tonight in my kitchen. This seems like a keeper.




  • 3 oz of Swai fish, diced 1″ pieces
  • 8 oz of extra firm tofu, diced 1″ pieces
  • 1/8 tsp yellow curry
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp low sodium Soy Sauce
  • 2 crowns broccoli, broken apart
  • 4 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup diced peppers
  • 1/2 diced tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp Newman’s Own Sesame Ginger Salad Dressing

photo 1

In this dish, I used half of my protein as  3 oz diced Swai fish, and half a block of diced extra firm tofu.  You can change up your proteins by using the whole block of tofu, or by using 7 oz of Swai, or another white fish.

Toss with some ginger, curry, red pepper flakes, and soy sauce.  To be honest, I don’t measure my spices, so I will try to come up with a correct guesstimate for you, but taste it before serving

photo 2

In your wok, heat with a little bit of the water from the tofu.  There really isn’t a need for oil in this dish, but if you prefer, you can include some sesame oil.

photo 3

Once the fish is cooked, you can add your preference of vegetables.  Cook until soft.  Add the Newman’s Own Salad Dressing, toss and serve.

Makes one hearty serving! Enjoy

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