This really IS the view from my front porch. Sweet, huh?

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Time to Move On

I have moved many times in my life averaging every five years until our present address and we have been here for over nine years now.  It doesn't seem possible.  And every move there have been neatly labeled boxes that have gone with us but have never been unpacked.  With each move the dust is wiped off the top and these precious treasures have been stored awaiting the day that they are needed.  They are full of items that, for some reason, have been assessed great worth and are, therefore, worthy of our efforts to keep.  

One such box is labeled "Lisa's Size 10".  Now I don't know how may people remember when I was a size ten but I promise you it was somewhere between the years of my engagement to Ricky and the birth of our first daughter (1982 -1985). Hold that thought...

Everyone knows that there are some things you just don't ask a girl and the #1 question is how much she weighs.  And everyone knows that there are some things that people will stretch the truth about and one of those is ... How much they weigh.  Some people are very disciplined and work diligently to keep their weight at the desired level.  Others don't ever give thought to what they weigh or how they got there.  And others, like me, have moments of both styles, only worrying about it when it becomes a problem, bouncing back and forth from the many fad diets, when we finally face reality that something needs to be done.

A few years ago we purchased a WiiFit program and one of the first things I do when using it is step on the board and weigh in. The little animated "mii" will make some humorous move and a voice I've learned to hate says "Oh, that's OBESE".  WOW!!  What a reality check!  There's nothing quite like an inanimate object being so truthful at 6 a.m.  I quickly learned to mute the TV before my early morning weigh-in but that didn't erase the truth - that I was obese.  But this past summer, due to some health problems I decided that I would get serious about making some changes in my life and take off some weight.

After several months of the ELMM diet (eat less, move more) I stepped on the WiiFit board and heard "Oh, that's overweight".  Now I know that was supposed to sound better but seriously... I did not feel any better about myself.  I had moments when I wondered "why try" and there were days when the EMML (think about it, you'll figure it out) was the preferred diet but an image of me at a much older age would form in my mind and I would remember that I want to be known as the fun grandma - someday.  

I am proud to say that the day finally came when the Wii could no longer taunt me by saying negative things about my weight.  And somewhere in the storage room there was a box labeled "Lisa's Size 10" waiting to be opened.  A little forethought at this moment would have helped prepare me for what was about to happen.  But I was so excited to think that there would be one less box to move next time that I didn't even consider the fact of how fashion styles have changed in 30 years.  There was not one single item in there that I would dare to wear in public.

Many times we hold on to things from our past.  By keeping a box of clothing in a size much smaller than I could wear I was holding on to a desire to be that size again.  But keeping the box did not make the dream a reality.  It took effort on my part.  And once the goal was reached  the truth was that things had changed around me and the way things were in the past is not how things are meant to be for me at this time in my life.  I will never look as good in those things as I remember them being in the past.

Are there things in your life that you've held onto thinking that you should keep but knowing deep inside you that they are not a good fit? For me it was a process but once I looked in the mirror and was honest with myself I knew it was time to let them go.  At first I was sad because there was nothing wrong with them - no holes, no tears, no missing buttons.  But they just are not my style any more.  So out they go!  It was a good feeling once I faced the truth.  

I've lost 40 lbs. and feel great but  I'm not through. And even though there is no box labeled "Lisa's Size 8" waiting for me to try them on there is a picture in my mind of an energetic grandma chasing after her neighbor's beautiful little girls - cause I'm too young to be chasing my own grandchildren - just yet! ;-)

Life lesson:  Look at your life and ask yourself if you are where God truly wants you to be.  If not, what do you need to change to get there?  It's not always easy to make those changes but there is never true peace if you are not living in God's will.

Jeremiah 29:11  New International Version (NIV)
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Friday, January 6, 2012

Shut Up and Drive

Recently the National Transportation Safety Board recommended that every state ban the use of cell phones (including hands free devices) while driving except in the case of an emergency.  They feel that this will reduce the number of "distraction-related" accidents.  This leads me to two thoughts:

1.  Define "emergency".  Is forgetting to pick up your outfit at the dry cleaners for tonight's event and calling someone else to get it for you an emergency?  Is calling home to have someone check to see if you turned off the iron an emergency?  Some would think so but I doubt this is what the powers that be had in mind.

2.  Will they eventually want to ban all distractions from inside an automobile? If so we would have to leave our children, our spouse and our pets at home.

I wonder if this pet is a "distraction" to the driver.

We will have to quit eating and drinking in our cars, remove all music devices (radios, cd players, mp3 players, etc.) from our car and quit picking up anything that can be dropped while driving... The list goes on and on.

You may have heard me say how I feel about this.  It is not the fact of not being able to use a cell phone while driving that bothers me.  It is the fact that someone is once again deciding that we are not smart enough to make wise decisions on our own.  You cannot legislate intelligence and even smart people can make bad decisions.  I wonder - by continually making laws that think for us are we limiting the next generation's ability to think reasonably on their own?  If they are never allowed to weigh the consequences of choice A against choice B how can they be expected to make good decisions?  Just some food for thought.

And now, just for laughs, here are some actual laws that are on the books in some states (Disclaimer:  This list of useful information was found on the internet.  Take it for what it’s worth.):
- A United States federal law makes it illegal to issue a fake Weather Bureau forecast.
- In Arkansas, no person shall sound the horn on a vehicle at any place where cold drinks or sandwiches are served after 9:00 p.m.
- In Los Angeles, It is not legal to bathe two babies at the same time in the same tub.
- In Indianapolis, no horse shall be driven or ridden on any street in the city at a speed in excess of ten (10) miles per hour.
- In Ottumwa, Iowa, it is illegal for any man, within the corporate city limits, to wink at any female with whom he is "unacquainted."
- In Topeka, KS, servers are forbidden to serve wine in teacups.
- In Kentucky, a female shall not appear in a bathing suit on any highway within this state
- In New Orleans, fire code outlaws the cursing of firefighters while they are in the performance of their duties.
- In Baltimore, it is illegal to take a lion to the movies.
- In Nebraska, it is not legal for a tavern owner to serve beer unless a nice kettle of soup is also brewing.
-In New York, a license must be purchased before hanging clothes on a clothesline.
- In Greene, NY, during a concert, it is illegal to eat peanuts and walk backwards on the sidewalks.
- In Ocean City, NY, it is illegal for men to go topless in the center of town. (This is a good idea!)
- In New York City, women may go topless in public, providing it is not being used as a business.
- In Oxford, Ohio, it is unlawful for a woman to appear in public while unshaven. This includes legs and face.
- In Oklahoma, it is illegal to have a sleeping donkey in your bathtub after 7p.m.
- In Alabama, it is illegal for a driver to be blindfolded while operating a vehicle.- In Arizona, hunting camels is prohibited.
- In California, animals are banned from mating publicly within 1,500 feet of a tavern, school, or place of worship.
- In California, no vehicle without a driver may exceed 60 miles per hour.
- In Arizona, it is illegal for men and women over the age of 18 to have less than one missing tooth visible when smiling.
I hope these made you smile.  I’ve searched long and hard for a life lesson here and have come up empty.  Maybe for me the lesson is that I should ease up and go with it rather than getting all worked up about the decisions our law makers impose upon us.  One day everyone will have forgotten about it, something else will be the subject of our attention and it will be something for us to laugh about in the future.