Friday, June 29, 2012

my body is a temple

This summer, I have spent most of my time moving into our new house and making it feel like home.  I have also made it a priority to get outside and get some exercise each day.  To be honest it hasn't been very easy to pry myself away from all the things that I feel need to get done in the house, and go outside to basically do, well, nothing.  But no matter how hard it is, it is always such an invigorating and uplifting experience once I'm actually out the door, enjoying the beauty of the earth around me.

that is SO me lol
Forcing myself to exercise hasn't been that easy either, there's always some excuse that I can come up with.  But for the most part I've been diligent about just doing it.  And it feels not just good, but great!  There is nothing like that sweaty, tired, elated feeling you get after a good workout, whether it be from biking, running, walking or just feels good.

I've been trying to take time to read more and use my computer less for entertainment, which is actually one of the reasons I haven't been blogging as much.  I've actually read two novels in the last two weeks, which is like a new record for me since Riggs joined us.  I have also been reading some non-fiction, family-health type books that have been very eye-opening.  With Riggs nearing the six month mark, I am really trying to reevaluate my personal eating habits in anticipation for introducing him to the world of food.

I have a problem with food, well really it's just with a type of food - processed sugars and carbohydrates.  I know (and have known for a very long time) that I eat way too much sugary, carb-y food, and I can feel it slowing me down physically.  But what I didn't really realize until the last year or two is that it is also slowing me down mentally.  It's just not good for me, period.  But it's an addiction that is very, very hard for me to break (you might think "addiction" is a strong word to use for this, and it might seem like it at first.  It's not like I'm eating an entire batch of cookies each day, it's just that for me, I have very little control over emotional and bored eating, and therefore I choose to call it an addiction - it helps me to recognize it as the serious problem that it is).

I eat very healthy in all other ways, and even the sugary, carb-y foods I eat are technically organic or "natural". Regardless, it doesn't make it any more right to eat processed foods every day in the form of cookies, muffins, brownies and ice-cream, especially since I feel like I have no control over it.  If I have a bad day, sometimes all I can think about is getting home and eating something chewy and chocolate-y.

To be honest, I feel like I don't even know how to structure or plan a meal without some sort of starchy carbohydrate being the main ingredient.  Even as I'm mixing up the dough for the cookies I'm supposedly making for Steve, I know I'll be the one eating most of them.  And as I'm eating just one more cookie, I know it's not good for me, and that it doesn't feel good.  It's a very bad relationship, and it's something I do not want to model to my son.  I want him to have a much healthier relationship with food than I do.

So that leads me to this post, and the thoughts I've been dwelling on lately in what steps I need to take in order to make a big change in my relationship with foods and my wellbeing.  I heard of a book in that blog world that looks very interesting to me, which I thought I'd share here.

It sounds like a very interesting read, and I'm anxious to find it and begin reading.  Almost every single review on Amazon was very positive, and I think it is important to think about what we eat from a biblical perspective.  A large part of my mental anguish in regards to my food addiction, has been strong conviction that I am harming my body and not treating it as a temple, as God tells us to do in the New Testament.

What?  Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?  For ye are bought with a price:  therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20

I think those two verses will be my theme verse for the next couple of months, or how ever long it takes for me to get my relationship with food sorted out.  And whether or not you struggle with food, or low self-esteem, or whatever it may be, maybe this needs to be your theme verse too.  I think we could all use a little reminding that God created us the way we are and expects us to treat our bodies as temples to glorify him (not ourselves).

{this moment}


{this moment}  a friday ritual.  a single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.  a simple, special, exraodinary moment.  a moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

inspired by Soulemama

Friday, June 22, 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Bodenburg Butte

This afternoon I decided that I was going to climb the Butte.  Tutka had been in the kennel for the entire morning while I was swimming with Kelsey and her boys and needed some exercise and I couldn't stand being inside on such a day.  So I loaded up the dogs and a lot of water and drove just up the road to the trailhead.  

It's only a 3 mile round trip hike, but it's still a challenging trail.  It took me about 30 minutes to get to the top, carrying Riggs in the Ergo and stopping to talk to some of the volunteers who were working on trail maintenance.  I was really dying at the top, and was never more glad to see flat(er) ground again.

It is probably the most beautiful view I have ever seen, especially with the weather like it is today.  I loved it!  Here are some pictures from the trip:

two dogs
and the bright shining sun
a nice place to stop and sit a while...
there are stairs...
and ropes...
and footholds...
and then everything opens up...
and you're nearly there...
the most beautiful views I think I've ever seen
and a little boy who can sit on his own
our little town
Pioneer Peak and some of the farms on the Bodenburg Loop
Knik River
love to feel the sun on my feet
two happy hikers

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Settling In

I'm starting to discover all the quirky little things about where we live, and I love it.  Whenever we turn onto our little gravel road, I feel tension leaving my body.  And when we turn into our drive, I am overwhelmed remembering that the little white house with blue trim is ours.  It's ours!  The first couple of weeks here were still somewhat stressful, and not as exciting as I had quite hoped they would be.  We were unable to completely move in because of the carpet situation, and it was chaotic not knowing exactly where things were and I found myself digging through the same boxes over and over.  I was somewhat glum, and prone to emotional sensitivity that I'm sure started to try poor Steve's patience.

Progress happened each weekend when Steve was home from work, and two weeks after we moved, the carpets were in, the painting was finished and we were finally able to move into the bedrooms.  We have since been able to more fully unpack our belongings, finding new homes for them in this perfect {to us} little house.  And somewhere along the way, a peaceful contentedness has entered my heart and flourished there.

I have spent hours biking and walking around the neighborhood, and have biked into Palmer three times now.  Palmer is such a lovely town, filled with the nicest people, who are quick to smile and lend a helping hand.  I am being completely truthful when I say I haven't had a single negative experience yet.  Riding my bike through town, people in cars were very respectful and thoughtful, stopping despite having the right of way and waving me on to cross in front of them with a smile.

On the little gravel roads near our house, anyone who drives by lifts their hand to give a friendly wave and each time it brings a smile to my face.  When I am out in our yard, each person that walks, bikes, four wheels, or drives by waves or calls hello.  It is so friendly and encouraging, and that little gesture of kindness can lift my spirits even when I am the most frustrated.

Today I set out from my house on a walk, not knowing really how far or where I planned on going.  I just knew that we all {Riggs, both dogs and me} needed a break from the house - some fresh air and exercise.  There was a slight breeze and the temperature was pleasantly cooler than the last couple of days have been, and not nearly as muggy.  Clouds were hanging low in the sky and rain seemed likely at some point, probably later in the afternoon.  We looked like quite the quirky group ourselves, since I had Tutka on the leash, Riggs in the Ergo, and Beau in the stroller.  It felt so silly at first, but it worked out very well.  I'm trying to work on leashed walking with Tutka, and Beau is too distracting for him.  I did not want to leave Beau behind, however, and so buckling him into the stroller allowed him to come along, but be "out of sight, out of mind" for Tutka.

It was a lovely walk!  Since we first moved in, I have noticed a motorhome that drives by our house nearly every day.  Today while walking, I passed the motorhome, which slowed to a stop next to us, and the driver window rolled down to reveal an elderly woman, her husband in the passenger seat.  They had a little laugh about the dog situation, and introduced themselves.  We chatted for a moment, and then they headed down the street, past our home and onto theirs.  This was exactly the kind of neighborly interaction I had hoped for when moving out here to the "country" and I was glad they had taken the time to stop and talk to me.

We kept walking and came to the bunny corridor {at least that is what we call it}, where we counted 5 bunnies.  Whenever Steve and I drive {or bike} by, we count how many bunnies we can see.  The most we've seen at one time was 11, mostly big, fluffy black bunnies, although there is at least one white and one duff colored bunny amongst the lot.  They are all so cute, and they spend their time hopping lazily about, or stretching out in the sun. 

 I do wish there was some path through the empty fields all around the area that I could walk through, long enough that I could not walk to the end in one morning.  I love to be out enjoying the beauty of the natural world around me, and when I am out feel as though I would like to just keep walking forever.  For when I am walking, my head is filled with the sweet scent of the wildflowers and grass and freed from the tedious thoughts and cares of the everyday, I can more clearly see and enjoy the beauty around me.  

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's day to everyone out there in the blogger world!  It is Steve's first father's day today, which is pretty special (well technically he was a father last year too...but it's a lot more exciting when you actually know your baby and have performed some fatherly tasks).  Unfortunately, I'm sick, boo.  I'm trying to be cheerful and keep smiling while coughing up a storm, and chugging market spice tea.

I did manage to snap this adorable photo this morning and had to share:

Happy Father's Day from the Harness Boys :)

Friday, June 15, 2012


So, let me tell you about reason #137 why I love to bike...MOSQUITOES.  I thought it would be a stupid wonderful idea to take Riggs on a walk this afternoon rather than going on a bike ride.  My legs were sore from the workout and 5 mile ride I did yesterday afternoon, and I thought stretching them out by going for a nice walk would be a good idea.  So we put on our walking shoes and headed out for a walk.

We were just walking along, minding our own business, when they came, swarming us from every direction without mercy.   I tried to walk faster to see if that would help, but it didn't seem to.  They were getting thicker by the moment, so I decided I had had enough, turned around and ran home.  Yes, ran.  So much for a nice leisurely walk. 

Me trying to stay away from the evil mosquitoes

Riggy seemed to have a fun enough time, even thought they swarmed him too.  I did buy a bug net for his stroller at some point...I guess I need to get that out and use it.  Or maybe I could just go biking, and he could be in his nice, cozy, bug-free little buggy riding along behind me.  

After all, there are lots and lots of roads to explore nearby, with little to no traffic (if you don't count four-wheeler traffic, that is).  

Oh, and PS...

{this moment}

{this moment}
A Friday ritual.  A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.  A simple, special, extraordinary moment.  A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  


linked up with Amanda at SouleMama for this post

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Sick on a Sunny Day

Hello everyone!  So, it's the first sunny day in a very long time and guess what?  I'm sick.  Yep, stuffy-nose, sore-throat, losing-voice, ears-plugged kind of sick...isn't it wonderful?  There is a whole list of things I should be doing inside the house (washing the odd dishes that didn't fit in the dishwasher, putting the things that gather on the kitchen island back where they belong, starting the laundry, planning what to make for dinner...) or even outside the house (pick up doggy-poo, mow the lawn, hey or even sit on the porch in the sun or go for a leisurely bike ride).

I'm not doing any of those things.  Instead, I'm spending some quality time with my laptop while Riggs naps and Tutka chews a bully stick (only way to keep him occupied for any length of time).  And guess what?  It feels sooo good.  I don't even feel the least bit guilty.

I've been looking at fabric over at Fat Quarter Shop and thinking of all the wonderful things I'd like to make with them.  First thing on the list of things (other than quilts and handkerbibs) that I want to make are the Quick Change pants from the Handmade Beginnings book.  Here is one example, and then Nicole over at Frontier Dreams made a pair for her little guy here as well.  They are just so, so cute, and there are even modifications you can use for fitting these pants over fluff.

The only thing is, garment sewing is so intimidating to me!  And I want to make them out of nice fabric, but I don't want to ruin it if the pants don't turn out well.  So I'm thinking of using some old fabric I have lying around to make a test pair, and then moving onto the real deal with some much cuter fabric.  Here is some Michal Miller fabric that I am in love with:

Anyway, I think I might force myself to go on a bike ride.  I know I'll feel better if I do, and Riggs just loves looking around at everything.  Maybe we'll stop by the Reindeer Farm and take some pictures...who knows?

Despite being sick and having a crazy puppy to keep an eye on, I've actually had a pretty good morning.  How can you go wrong when you wake up to this?

You just can't have a bad day when you're spending it with Riggy - one smile will melt all your cares away...

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

handkerchief + bib = handkerbib

Ever since he was a wee little lad of about two months, my little guy has been a drooler!  And not only are there copious amounts of drool constantly pouring out of his mouth, but he also loves to stuff things in his mouth at any chance he gets.  And while technically, just a regular ol' bib would probably do the trick to keep his onesie somewhat dry, Riggs just isn't a bib kind of guy.  

I was cruising around Etsy when I saw something that would be perfect for our little...situation.  Baby handkerchiefs!  Or as we call them, handkerbibs!  They are so cute it's not even funny, so I decided to whip a few up!  (Yes I realize that I just used a lot of exclamation marks, but come on, we are talking about handkerbibs people!)

They turned out very well, if I do say so myself, and I am so excited for Riggs to get some use out of them.  I did them in a variety of fabrics, and even made a girly one with some scraps I had. 

Here is Riggs modeling the pea pod handkerbib:

And here it is off the model:

I used some light blue chenille for the backing and added some snaps with a hand press I got super cheap on sale at Joanns.  Have I ever mentioned how much I despise working with chenille?

I had to take some more pictures of my little cutie modeling the handkerbib:

He was happy to oblige :)

And here are a few of the other ones I've made:

Oh and it's still really messy, but here is a picture of my new sewing area, I'm so incredibly thrilled to have a permanent area set up!  It is so nice to not have to unpack everything if I want to work on any sewing, and then pack it all away again when I'm at a stopping point.  I just love it!  I'll post more pictures when it's a little more tidy, I promise.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

5 months old

The days they pass so quickly now the nights are seldom long
Time around me whispers when it's cold
The changes somehow frighten me and still I have to smile
it turns me on to think of growing old
For though my life's been good to me there's still so much to do
So many things my mind has never known...
John Denver

Dear Riggs,

Today you are 5 months old and I can't believe it.  Time has flown by so quickly and it just seems to get faster each day.  I think that being a mama is the most bittersweet experience there is...everyday I am overwhelmed with emotions, both happy and sad, thinking of quickly you are growing up and away from me.  One moment I am so excited about the new things you are learning and doing, the next I am wishing I could keep you as my little newborn baby forever.  

You are sitting up now for about 10 seconds at a time by yourself, before you slowly crumple forward or spastically jerk to one side or the other.  You love to clutch things, including your Haba Magica toy, your soft little gnome, your wooden teething ring, or anything else that happens to be near your hands.  You love books, and although we read you the same ones over and over you never seem to tire of them.

You still love tummy time, and try so hard to get all the way up on your hands and knees at the same time, but so far you haven't quite managed to do so.  You push way up on your hands, and sometimes roll right over.  You get up on your knees, but can't get up on your hands at the same time.  But you try so hard and don't even get mad, you just keep trying and trying.  You can scoot around due to your ministrations, and are quite happy with yourself when you get from one side of the rug in your bedroom to the other.

Newborn prints and then today's 5 month old much bigger!     
We did your handprints and footprints today, and I simply can't believe how much you've grown!  You are solidly into your 6-12 months clothes now, and can't fit into any 3-6 months clothing no matter how I try to squeeze you in.  Here are your 5 month old stats:

18lbs 13oz :: 28 inches long :: head circumference 43.5 cm

That's quite a bit different from the 9lbs 4oz, 21.5 inches, and 36.5 cm (head circumference) you were at birth.  It is amazing to watch you sprout up like a little weed, we love it!

You are our sweet little baby, and it has been the happiest 5 months of our lives.  We love you so much!

Lots of hugs and kisses,

Mama and Daddy