Note (aka Warning) to Reader: I’ve been away awhile and am feeling wordy.
I don’t know about you, but when it comes to setting sail on the sea of life, my little boat bounces around a LOT. I’m 52; you’d think I’d have things figured out!
I think I’m getting there.
Do you want to know my secret for calming down the storms at sea? It has to do with that scary guy walking across the water. Wait, what?! Who are you? Leave me alone! I’m fine! And then, glub glub glub….your little boat starts to fill with water.
Don’t be afraid. Reach out your hand. Let him in.
An entire season’s gone by since I put my virtual pen to this (paperless) blog. We are well, praise God! We are busy but well.
First a quick update and then I’ll get to the “advice” part of this blog post. Feel free to scroll ahead if pix of my kids don’t interest! I mean, I know we have Facebook for all of that, but I like this space to have some memories too.
John Michael, 21, has moved back home to save some money.
The mom, dad, dog and siblings are super pleased to have him around.
(Plus? Another driver in the house!)
Stephen, 19, is back in the states after spending two months in Norway. He was one of the lucky ones that got to take his phone, so I asked him to send me some pictures of the country. This is what I got:
…with the semi-apologetic ”I know you asked for pictures of Norway but this will have to do.”
I responded, “Such a sacrifice on my part!”
(Yes, I’m proud.)
(And incredibly jealous.)
(I want abs of steel like that!)
My two oldest girls celebrated back-to-back birthdays: Maria (my senior) turned 18 on the 21st…
…and Avila (a sophomore) celebrated her sweet 16th on Thanksgiving.
It’s a good thing I served up lots of sweets. 😉
Our Camille, 14, is salt and light in an often gloomy world. Granted, at times she’s a bit more….salty than luminous, but it all shakes out beautifully in the end.
Anthony, 9, has started serving at Mass! He’s on the schedule every Friday at the historic church up the road, and I promise to not get all mom-of-James-and-John-y. I promise to not charge the altar–“Excuse me! Pardon me!”–and fix his alb when the pockets are wonky.
I may, however, consider it.
And finally, Nicky, who is 5-going-on-15.
He’s a little terrorist. End of story.
* * *
So going back to my wanting abs of steel, here’s an honest question for you: Is it okay to use Advent to get in shape?
I say absolutely! Body, mind and most of all, soul.
* * *
What are your goals for Advent? I’ve been working on mine for months now, with varying degrees of success, which means that I hope to kick them up a notch in this penitential season. I do so love this time of preparation—I love the church readings, the candlelight, the Advent songs of longing.
“Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel…and ransom captive Israel.”
I need to be ransomed. I need to be redeemed. I need…to stop stuffing my face with leftover dressing.
The honest-to-goodness truth is, I do so much better without the sugar and carbs. Probably this is true for all of us, but how far do we take it? Because “12 carbs/day the Keto way” has not been sustainable for me. For months, I have felt like a failure for not strictly adhering to a Ketogenic diet because I have seen the AMAZING results on the part of my friends. Feeling like a failure is not helpful, unfortunately. I am finding more success with Trim Healthy Mama.
Success, joy, inner peace. I am finding my way when it comes to eating; I am leaning on God to break some lifelong habits; I am so much more than a number on the scale.
Oh, and in addition to leaning heavily (ha, pun intended) on THM recipes, I have resubscribed to the Eat Right Now program because mindfulness is the way to go, baby! Being present and intentional has helped me SO much–including, ahem, in the bedroom. (I’m sorry if my being candid embarrasses you! Sex is a gift of marriage from our good God. If you don’t believe me, look at the cute kiddo in that last photo!)
Finally, I would be a very poor MUTU ambassador if I didn’t let you know about this massive sale:
This is the best deal you’ll find, apart from the birthday sale that she runs in July. Yes, I’ll get a small commission if you use my link. Yes, I would be happy to do the program with you.
Click on this link to learn more about the program: The Dignity of a Body that Makes you Feel and Look Good.
I’m calling this reboot “Abs for St. Andrew.” ; )
* * *
And now we come to the mind and soul bit, which is the MOST important part of our Advent prep.
Or, at least, it should be.
How are we preparing our mind and soul for the coming of Our Lord at Christmas? That’s what I’d like to discuss in Part II.