We spent last weekend in Winchester, Indiana – home of Mrs. Wic’s Pies and soon-to-be home of our youngest son and his family. He was affirmed as the new lead pastor of Freedom Life Church by a unanimous vote. It was a blessing for us to be there with them; I’ll talk more about that in a bit.
We went to support them and also to help out with the kids at night. Since they have the newborn, the three older boys bunked in our hotel rooms. We got two rooms because hotel rooms are no longer large enough for a rollaway bed or air mattress. What’s with that?
The infant’s parents probably got more sleep than me, as the two younger ones were up and down most of the night. At one point, the 5-year-old cried and said, “I’m gonna be grouchy tomorrow” because he couldn’t sleep.
Then as we listened to sleep story number… I don’t know; we listened to a ton of them from an app called Sleep; the same kid said, “It didn’t tell me to close my eyes yet.” Oh, boy!
Once he fell asleep, the 7-year-old woke up and started having bathroom issues, as usual. Then a round of musical beds and so on. Needless to say, I am slow-going this week.
WHAT I DID – I FOUND A KNEE-FRIENDLY EXERCISE ROUTINE
Turning over a new leaf and starting fresh is hard, especially when embarking on a health journey, whether for the first time or the hundredth time. Even after all these years, as someone who used to be fit-ish, do Pilates, walk religiously (I once walked in a blizzard, no joke), and work out, it seems like I should be able to hop right back in.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Besides being WAY out of shape with having a bum knee and ankle, it’s even more of a challenge to find any exercise I can do right now.
But, thanks to Pinterest, I happened on this beginner’s exercise routine, and with my lightest hand weights, I could do it without much issue. I only completed two sets of twenty reps for each exercise. However, I’m happy to report my knees did not give me any trouble, except on my injured side, the left leg got very weak during the single bicep curl + side lunge exercise.
If you try it, please notice that the instructor is not bending her knees deeply.
WHAT I ATE – A HEALTHY BOWL
I found Nikki of Nikki Gets Fit on YouTube a while back, and while I don’t do Weight Watchers or count calories, her successful weight loss habits like food prepping and bowl recipes inspire me. Earlier this week, we made a Nikki Inspired greek bowl using leftover roast chicken (linked last week), artichoke hearts, roasted veggies, roasted sweet peppers, and a yummy tzatziki sauce from Aldi over cauliflower rice. My picture isn’t pretty, and I prefer it over regular rice, but it was good.
TIP – Slide your cursor along the timeline when watching Nikki’s YT video, with several different bowl recipes. You will see the recipe’s title where that particular recipe is found on the timeline.
I didn’t do a great job of meal prepping this week. But a while back, I prepared all the components of several different bowls at the beginning of a week, as Nikki does, and I will admit, dinners were a breeze all week.
Maybe next week, right?
WHAT INSPIRED ME – STYLE
Another YouTuber who inspires me is personal stylist Melissa Murrell of MM Styling. If you look her up, get ready to binge-watch her content!
She’s not plus size, but she has done a YouTube masterclass series on how to style different body shapes, and her styling tips are so attainable for EVERY WOMAN. I’ve taken lots of great fashion advice from her. Once you see how she slightly changes a hemline or tuck and completely changes the look of an outfit, you can’t unsee it.
Last week she did a video on common styling mistakes, including mostly real-life casual outfits, and showed how to look more pulled together and proportional. I’m already incorporating some of those tips.
WHAT I BOUGHT – HOME & FASHION (oops!)
CONFESSION TIME: I backslid on my spending freeze with this coat. Dang, it! But I still want to find a light, cool-toned neutral color (Remember, I now know what colors look best on me.) long wool-blend coat that will complete many outfits. I thought I could wait until February, but after wearing a red plaid coat all weekend, I was chomping for a neutral. Let’s say, “Melissa made me do it!”
But as I said in this post on the spending freeze – if you make a mistake, learn from it and move on.
I also bought some of these storage containers and two of these to help me reorganize one of my deep pull-out pantry shelves that hold dry staples. Once I get all that labeled, I’ll photograph it and share it with you.
WHAT I WORE
I forgot to take a camera with me this last weekend, and as you might imagine, I was looking pretty haggard between the tears and lack of sleep. So I thought I’d put a board together to show you what I wore to church on Sunday.
All items and an alternate, if the original was sold out, are listed under the collage. The stars next to the item denote the exact piece I wore; if it doesn’t have one, it’s similar.
STYLE TIP: Carry a bag that’s close to the same color as your hair. You’ll coordinate no matter what else you’re wearing.
WHAT INSPIRED ME – HOW GOD WORKS
This has been and continues to be a spiritual journey of growth and sacrifice for the Mister and me as we let go and grieve our boy moving three hours away. But we couldn’t be prouder of him following God’s call. Our son’s sermon Sunday was on how to know if you’re in the will of God.
Being there this weekend as he shared his heart with the congregation was healing for his dad and me. We watched, in real-time, as members of the congregation fell in love with them.
Following God’s call and being in His will is the best place to be, but it can require us to do hard things. It doesn’t always make sense, especially from a worldview. But God is always good and won’t leave us hanging if we step out in faith.
Let me leave you today with this example of God’s goodness:
The church’s current pastor is stepping down after pastoring there for over 22 years, and the congregation, who loves him, is grieving his moving on just like we’re mourning our son’s move. After the church and our son announced his affirmation in a Facebook post, one of the members wrote this comment:
She begins by referring to the fact that he quoted a line from one of their favorite movies, Young Frankenstein, during his sermon.
This is just the topping on the cake! God really chose the right pastor and family to come in behind [previous pastor & wife]…what I thought was going to be so hard has been transformed into something.. glorious…it’s exactly how it felt during the service..like God was putting his arms around our congregation and saying, “Look, I’ve got you; it’s Me, it’s always been Me.” Going to miss my [previous pastor’s] family for sure but looking forward in excitement for the Holloway family and Freedom Life Church!
Isn’t that just like God? Even when the going gets tough, when we are open to what God has for us, He is always good and provides precisely what you need at the right time.
What you think is terrible, challenging, or sad might be the very thing that will catapult you toward a big ol’ God Hug and a deeper relationship with Him. So LET’S GO into this year looking for God in everything.
Because He’s GOT YOU. It’s HIM. It’s always been Him.