Friday, June 29, 2012


Living simply has been something I have been working towards for several years now.  The term itself just exudes a beauty that I long to capture in my daily life.

But as human nature would have it, as my nature would have it, living simply has become overly complicated.  And ironically, in order to strive to live simply, any google search will leave you wanting to buy more books and systems that claim to help simplify and organize our lives while filling our shelves and minds with even more stuff.  We often spend precious time we so desperately long to keep to ourselves culling through websites trying to find the magic key to this so called nirvana of a more peace-filled life.

I have had numerous posts roaming through my mind on this topic of late, especially since we were dealing with a very intense personal situation in which all that we as a family knew was being threatened by an outside person who was unknown to us until very recently.  

Thankfully, that person has been stopped and while the "situation" is not over nor is it resolved, we feel a bit more at ease.  Living through 4 months of constant stress and uncertainty of what would happen at any given moment that would require immediate action, has left me with many lesson.  Some of those lessons pertain directly to living more simply, in a very tangible way.  One of the most important lessons I have taken away from this experience is this...

Life is NOT an emergency.  There are urgent situation which arise, sometimes more often than I would like, but my LIFE is a gift.  It is to be treasured.  It is to be enjoyed.  Even in the most difficult times, the most challenging situations.  It is NOT to be lived as though I am on auto pilot, or even worse, as if I have no say in what I do with my time while I am here.  Life is precious.   Ann Voskamp states, "Life is not an emergency, it is Eucharisteo!"  

There are three areas that I find simplicity must be found in to be truly successful.

1.  The physical world in which we live:   Our stuff must minimize to make room for our hearts and souls to fill.  This is the culling through process which so many of us welcome....getting rid of stuff.  The trick is to keep the stuff away in the first place. The way in which we discern what to keep and what to decline must relate to our frame of reference.  For me and for my family, this is a deeply spiritual process and therefore #2 on this list must be addressed first.

2.  Our time:  Our calendars fill up quickly with many wonderful and many obligatory activities.  It must be a priority to simplify our daily lives in the realm of time to allow for the next step on this list.  In order for us to prioritize which activities are best FOR us, we must understand what our purpose is.   To discover this, we must spend time, in the classroom of silence, listening to what He has to tell us.  Every day. First thing.  Even before coffee...ok, maybe with coffee in hand.  

3.  Spiritually:  We can get bogged down in our faith lives too.  Trying to pray just the right way, attending the perfect retreat or bible study.  We over-complicate the simplest of ideas.  Love.  Love one another.  Love God.  Love yourself.  It is that simple.   Once we understand what we are being called to, we can better define number 1 and number 2.  

I plan to take each of these areas and expand on them separately.  Hopefully, I won't lose to many of you, but I do understand if this is not your cup of tea.  

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.  ~Leonardo DaVinci


Since leaving FB, I have lost many of my garden pictures.  I think I have them somewhere on my phone, but that would mean figuring out how to upload them as a group rather than emailing them to myself one at a time.  C'est la vie!

Today I finally found a use for the mint that I can't seem to kill off!  Mint tea! It's delicious and a nice change from coffee.  I really need to give the brown crack up soon.

Yesterday's harvest 

Now I am trying to make with my beautiful eggplant!  We made hummus last weekend.  I am thinking of something more substantial...maybe a bit of garlic, onion, tomatoes....mmmmm.....

Better Days

I am definitely feeling better about training than I have in awhile which is a good thing considering Cactus Rose training began this week!

I will be heading down to Pearland on Sunday to give the Y Freedom Tri a full effort as I tackle tri #2.  I am excited to see how I do this time compared to CB & I, though it is difficult to compare the two races for a couple of reasons.

1.  Pearland is a pool swim vs the Lake Woodlands swim of CB & I.
2.  The sprint distance is not always the same for a sprint race.  Pearland is a 300 meter swim, 11 mile bike and 3.0 mile run vs CB & I 500 meter swim, 15 mile bike and 5K run.

At the end of the day, it's just about getting out there and having fun.  Seeing what a bit of cross-training can do for me, and come away uninjured so that ultra training can begin.  I do miss my long runs.

I look forward to purchasing a bike of my own within a month or so.  I have decided, I think, to go new instead of used.  I will be buying an entry level bike, so the price difference between new and used is not very significant and the new purchase will get me a few extra things such as a warranty, a proper bike fitting, and the assurance that I have a bike that has not had a questionable history such as a crash or some other such thing.

I hope to grab some time to blog a bit more, but for now, I am enjoying the summer time with the kids!

Friday, June 8, 2012


 My training has had no focus of late, because, well, I have no need for a plan until the end of June.  I am not handling this time without direction very well.  Turns out, I thrive best on organized chaos, strict schedules, tight deadlines, and the like.
This is our second week of summer and with very little running or training of any sort to be had, I have accomplished almost nothing.
No closets have been organized, no shelves cleared.  No drawers pillaged through.  Not even a lazy day at the pool.
I guess this is what happens when coming off of several months of stress, the un-fun kind.
The beginning of this week found me feeling like I could not care less if I ever ran again.  No matter how much sleep I would get, I was still tired. I bumped up the iron, slept when I wanted and then I noticed I started feeling better on Wednesday.
I met a friend for a bike ride which was cut short by a tremendous thunderstorm.  Last night, I was ready to hit the pool, but another thunderstorm rolled in just as we were heading to the Y.  I could have gone and jumped on the treadmill, but that was not appealing to my senses at all.  I opted for an arm workout at home with the free weights and my 6 year old Boo was all in!  He makes everything fun!
Today, I am feeling the need for a run.  But if I don't get one, since there are no sitters here right now, then I suppose it will have to wait another day.
I need a jumpstart to get my mojo back.  Not sure where it went or why it left.  I did register for a few sprint tris and I have Cactus Rose to start getting ready for, but even those carrots are leaving me less than worried about missed workouts.  Of course, no plan means no workouts are there to be missed.
What is YOUR favorite thing to do to get mojo back?