Monday, March 26, 2012

Refinement: A Sugar Update

We're one week into our little experiment in self-control! Honestly it's going pretty well. There are definitely times we'll run into one of our regular meals that we begrudgingly alter, but for now we have successfully laughed it off. Again, there's little chance I could be successful without partnering with Nate. He's a champ.

Just as a clarification, we completely acknowledge that cutting out sugar completely is unrealistic. We're just cutting out as much sugar as possible, especially refined sugar, while being smart about the sugar we do consume. For instance, I realize this recipe has a banana in it, and bananas have a high amount of fructose. But I also realize that we've consumed an entire bag of spinach since we started eating them last week! I consider that a win, eh? I'm also not giving up yogurt, as I've always disliked milk but I'm hesitant to remove any other source of calcium from my diet. (Right, Mom? :-) Other than that, we're just being far more intentional about sugar content in the food we eat.

As I mentioned earlier, Nate and I are in a season of making changes in our lives, and this is one of those changes. From the very beginning of our marriage, there have been several life circumstances that have been beyond my control to change. To be honest, I haven't coped with them all that well. I kept my exterior put together, but on bad days I was quick to self-medicate with indulgent treats (i.e. ice cream, etc.). And soon I was indulging myself with treats even on the better days. Without realizing it, I adopted the attitude that proclaimed, "I deserve to eat/do what I want because life is hard right now." Awesome reasoning, eh?

Slowly but surely I've woken up to my skewed thinking and am trying to, by the grace and strength of God, create an attitude overhaul. I cannot change those painful life circumstances, but I can change how I react. Thus, we're cutting back our sugar. We're spending more time outside. Watch out, we might just try to run a 5k! (But don't hold your breath on that one... :-)

How about you? Are you making some changes this spring? How are you going about it? Let me know!

Another List of Proud "Saying No" Moments:
  • Birthday cake
  • Donuts
  • Cinnamon Rolls
  • No soda! Including trips to the movie theater

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Not-So-Sweet Season

Yesterday Nate and I started a season that is definitely a change for us, but the verdict is still out as to how excited I am.

We're done eating sugar (for now).

I know its a smart thing to do, a healthy thing to do, but I'm still a bit wary. Ugh...I really like sugar. :-)

I'm so thankful Nate is partnering with me on this one, as there's no way I'd follow through with it on my own. But here's the rub. Nate is a very disciplined person, and really his lifestyle hasn't changed all that much. We won't have any late night ice cream dates (though I'm the who asks for those...), and we won't purchase any more soda (that he doesn't like paying for anyway...), but overall, he'll just roll with the punches.

Me, on the other hand? I work at a church that has a constant stream of pastries and desserts out for the taking! Plus, I like to fudge on the rules. I sprinkle hints about what my tongue is craving for dessert. I've grown skilled in sweet talking my way to a treat.  (Any other sugary language I can use? I can't help myself. :-)

So here we are. 2 [long] days down with no sugar. I can definitely tell my body is dragging without its normal dose of simple carbs, but again, it's only been two [long] days.

In my last post I said I was going to highlight the positives, so to be sure I accomplish that goal, here is a list of things to which I've said, "No, thanks," in order of difficulty:
  • Hershey kisses
  • Chocolate cupcakes
  • One of my favorite desserts I made for a friend
  • Butter cake...with butter-cream frosting...and raspberry filling
Woo hoo! Anyone have any suggestions as to how to keep saying no? Here's to a beautiful, healthy spring!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Withered and Time for a Change

Nate was cleaning off our crowded counter the other night and forcing me to throw away some of the clutter. (Nate is much tidier/cleaner/better at this than me. :-) He held up a flower arrangement that was far past its prime and asked with pleading eyes, "Can these go away?" I gave a sideways smirk and conceded, but before he tossed them, we proceeded to have the following conversation:
"Do you want to take a picture first?" Nate asked.
"Why would I want to take a picture of dead flowers?" I asked, slightly surprised and mildly horrified.
"Well, it seems like every time something breaks or something, you take a picture and write about it."


He nailed it.

There should be a picture of dried up, droopy flowers right here because that's exactly how we've been feeling: withered.

But God sustains and renews and has been doing some great things despite, because of, through the hard stuff. So I'm going to be intentional about making things a little more positive around here. I won't lie or sugar coat anything (I'm quite bad at that anyway...), but I do want to highlight God's amazing work!

May this beautiful spring weather infuse your day with new life!