Category Archives: Real Time Information

God’s Fairy Tale (Part II)

You already know this story has a fairy tale ending.

Yesterday I shared how stressed I was about the wedding and how God had everything under control. While I won’t share all the nitty gritty details of the struggle, I will tell you one story, only because it shows how faithful God is when He has a fairy tale dream to pull off for one of His girls.

As you’ll see as I walk through the wedding countdown, the Good Lord had all the key players in place and lots of beauty flowing to us through their talented fingers and creative minds.

But two weeks before the wedding that’s not where my emotions landed. They were in a big huge falling apart heap of tears. A handful of wedding details came back at twice the expected amount, and we were short with an emptied bank account. Jerry and I cried out to God, not knowing how to rescue the situation, believing God had Sarah’s dreams in His hands, but not seeing how they could be possible.

Tuesday night I went to bed with swollen, weepy eyes. Wednesday morning I got a call from a new friend who asked if she could put a check in the mail in return for some mentoring in her writing. Breathless, I hung up thanking God for His provision. But He wasn’t done.  The mail that day held another unexpected check. Surely I would never worry again in my whole life! (Rrrriiiigggghht . . .)

Buoyed by God’s miraculous provision, Sarah, Jerry, and I were determined to trust God, let go of worry, and enjoy!

The festivities started a week later with the arrival of family and friends. On Wednesday night I watched as David’s sisters ran into each other’s arms and clung to each other, then invited my girl into the circle before then embracing their brother. My heart overflowed at the love bursting between them as I witnessed their reunion. As you can see by the picture taken on the wedding day, Sarah fits right in.

Sisters!

Sisters! Front: Kristina, Sarah, Stephany Back: Jessica

Thursday night, David’s parents treated Jerry and me to a lovely meal while Sarah and David celebrated with their friends and siblings at bachelorette and bachelor parties. We even enjoyed an Italian dessert!

eating out with grundys

(Okay, this blog IS about weight loss. Let me say here and now I chose not even to THINK about food or calories or exercise the week of the wedding! Eating less has become a habit, so I wasn’t completely out of control most of the time. I think that is one of the beauties of seeking to make the weight loss journey about sustainable habits, not drastic measures. And when I eat heavy at one meal, I know I need healthier and lighter choices at the next. The only time I really blew it was with my girlfriends the day after the wedding. I ate a whole calzone and paid for it the rest of the night with a massive tummy ache!)

But back to the wedding countdown:

Friday included covering the trees at the venue in twinkle lights and hanging a few of the handmade signs Sarah and her friends made. sign belong

Like so many of the personal touches from friends who made the wedding special, these signs made me think of the young women who designed them, carrying out Sarah’s vision for decorating in the trees, and my heart swelled again.

Friday evening brought the rehearsal. I caught a great shot of David hugging his mom beforehand.

david and his mom

Sarah arrived a little late after rushing back home to freshen up after her day of decorating, but the wait was worth it because she was stunning in purple, as usual. David, too, dashed off to dress up and returned looking quite dapper.

rehearsal sarah and david

That evening we enjoyed a beautiful rehearsal dinner thanks to the groom’s parents, Steve and Ronda. The room was classy in white tablecloths with gorgeous favors of Jellie Bellies in fun, Mexican style goblets, along with flamboyant, floral centerpieces.

jelly belly

Even my hollow legged boys ate of the fajita buffet until they could hold no more. Joy bubbled everywhere as family and friends celebrated in a room of abundance. Steve and Ronda even invited Jerry’s cousins who we bumped into at the hotel, newly arrived from California!

(I probably shouldn’t admit that my very beautiful daughter was captured on film by her soon to be father-in-law while she knelt on the ground in her lovely purple dress, mouth gaping open, determined to catch the Jelly Belly being flung toward her by her brothers. Thankfully, Steve hasn’t yet shared the picture with me so it can’t appear in this blog. Ha!)

 Saturday started with a a lovely family brunch thanks to my sisters-in-laws. Unfortunately I don’t have pictures, but it was another experience of abundance! Bonnie made her famous banana bread, Anne had several pans of a wonderful egg and sausage dish, and Darlene brought a gorgeous fruit platter. My neighbor, Bernice, Sarah’s honorary grandmother, also contributed her famous fruit salad, Sarah’s favorite.  The food was amazing, but getting to share time with loved ones made it unforgettable.

Saturday afternoon included a pedi and mani for Sarah and me. (Yes, soon after I was barefoot, fancy toenails and all.)

pedi mani

At the nail salon another God moment happened. Sarah and I had both been hiding away a little money hoping to pay for the other person’s nails. When it came time to pay we were both counting our pennies, trying to treat the other one, when a dear friend paid not only for both of us, but for a manicure for David (sans nail polish, of course), too! Blessing and abundant provision! I sighed a sigh of relief, sure now I had enough $$ for my fancy updo the next morning. Even the little stressors systematically disappeared.

Perfect closure to an amazing day came when Sarah and David asked us to attend church with them in preparation for their big day on Sunday. I once again captured a great shot of them looking very in love.

At church night before

It wasn’t easy to fall asleep that night. Not only was the big day only hours away, but Jerry and I had so much to talk about! I laughed when it was Jerry telling all the stories of wonderful moments as we whispered together in bed after midnight. (Usually I’m the only one talking after midnight!) Finally, after a bit of red wine, we settled enough to embrace a short night, only guessing of the surprises the Lord had in store for the big day.

This post is really about God’s faithfulness and us losing the emotional weight of worry. Worry weighs us down–and for many of us is a trigger to eat. But worry does us no good. Scripture even tells us that we shouldn’t worry about tomorrow because our worrying can’t fix anything!

I’ve not yet won the worry war, but the wedding did include walking as victor in several worry battles. I’ve found the best antidote for worry is to pour my heart out to God.  He always hears. In our special wedding week He acted decisively, reaching down, blessing, relieving stress, and providing in big and small ways for Sarah and David’s special day–which I’ll finally share about tomorrow!

Tweetable:

Miraculous provision and dreams coming true

Dropping worry weight

God’s Fairytale

Let’s just say when God writes the fairy tale, it’s better than you can dream up on your own.

sign - fairy tale

Penned and painted by Sarah’s friends, this wedding sign says it all.

When David and Sarah got engaged almost a year ago, I began praying for the ability to give Sarah her dream wedding. We put a little nest egg away, but soon realized the sum was nowhere near enough. One step at a time God provided, mostly through the love and skill of others and the hard work of our daughter.

There were moments of intense stress. When a big event happens largely due to other people volunteering, you can’t be a drill Sargent. Things often came together slowly, and some fell through. During one of “those” moments, I complained to God, wishing I had more money and didn’t have to feel so helpless, so dependent on others.

I felt rather than heard His whisper, “Don’t you see what I’m doing? I’m bringing the community together to love Sarah. It’s better this way.”

I was to discover the truth of His words. Gift after gift was showered upon us giving Sarah much more than we ever could have on our own. When the big event occurred, touches of love were everywhere, reminders of dear friends each time we glimpsed the results of their labor. Such joy was much deeper than if the beauty had been created by simply throwing money at it.

Thanks to the Lord and the love of His people, Jerry and I can truly say our girl got her dreams.

I write about my BENew weight loss journey, but weight loss isn’t always physical. Sometimes we have weight that needs to go in the form of false perceptions about God, about ourselves, and about life. My husband Jerry and I are dropping pounds from a poverty mindset.

Somehow in our pursuit of God we grabbed hold of some ideas about Him that are not true. We equated holiness with little and lack. With finding good deals and not spending money.

Poverty has its place. It can lead a heart toward God as a dependence on Him is fostered through struggle. Sometimes God calls people–like Mother Teresa–to a lifestyle of poverty for a greater purpose. But doing without is not always a road to holiness or even His plan for us. Sometimes He wants us to have what we want, not just the best deal.

Jerry and I too often missed the joy and celebration parts of God’s character. While He is a God of sacrifice, He is also the Extravagant One who paints a double rainbow, designs a fuchsia flower, and puts a dollop of whipped cream on the top of mountain peaks.

joyHe is the Jesus who turned the water into wine at a friend’s wedding.

Our Lord delights in giving us good gifts and in our celebration of what He has given–like the gift of love He gave our daughter, Sarah, and our son-in-law, David, and the way we celebrated that on their wedding day.

I received an email from a friend as I fought not to freak out about wedding details. She said, “I was praying/journaling for you tonight . . . I saw this . . . open wedding with a semi-covered patio with the wood slats as the roof. Everything was beautiful for the wedding, enough ribbon, food, wine, and stamina. God will meet every need you have for this wedding, the spoken and unspoken desires of the heart. I saw that everyone was soooo happy. It is going to be a great day, take joy, my friend.”

It all came true.

When Sarah got engaged she and I each tattooed the word “delight” on a foot as a reminder that God pedi manidelights in us, and we delight in each other and in Him. This circle of delight shimmers in droplets of blessings. I’ve experienced such a thing many times, but perhaps this wedding reveals a shower of blessings unlike any other I’ve ever danced in. Sarah, too.

Please indulge me the next few days as I write about a different Benew journey–one where Jerry and I drop the weight of small expectations and grow healthier, embracing the abundance of beauty and celebration. Join us as we celebrate the union of Mr. and Mrs. David Grundy.

(A shout out to Marie at Fat Girls Slim whose blog about her son’s wedding inspired me to start writing our wedding story!)

Invite your friends to the celebration:

Dancing in droplets of Blessing!

Embracing Abundance, Losing the weight of lack

God’s fairy tales are the best!

Worth a Thousand Words

mom looking for her girl (2)

May 19, 2013

Several of you asked about my mother-of-the-bride dress. This is the first picture that has come since the wedding of me in it. I’m not standing or even posing, but it shows the dress and captures my JOY in my daughter’s delight.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words.

In this picture I’m completely comfortable with my body in my clothes. Wow. I’m not thinking about trying to hide my double chin or suck in a tummy. I’m just sitting there, looking for my dear husband to escort our beautiful daughter down the aisle–uh, sidewalk.

fat fb picture

September 2011

I’ve told many people that you don’t know what you give up in the area of health until you start getting it back. People say I look and act ten years younger. That’s because I FEEL ten years younger. I’d forgotten what it was like to hop out of a chair or flit across a room. Fifty pounds ago I lumbered. Aches I thought were age related are disappearing as my body is once again active and carrying around a normal amount of weight.

I say all of this because I want YOU to know that change is possible. With good nutritional support, some mental focus, a little exercise, and healthy spiritual and emotional under-girding, life can be different for you, too. The pounds CAN come off. You CAN regain some of what you thought was gone forever.

And since a picture is worth a thousand words I want to remind you that I know what I’m talking about.

Tweetables:

A picture is worth a thousand words

You CAN 

Life is different as you regain your health

You, too, can live a BeNew journey

Real Time Post

“Taste buds, you aren’t the boss of me!”

I read that quote in the Made to Crave devotional, and my back got a little straighter.

Last night my taste buds were the boss of me, and today I still have a tummy-ache 21 hours later.

I loved the thought in the devotional that the WHOLE of me should make my eating decisions, not just my tastebuds. After all, my tummy didn’t want me to over-eat on heavy food like I did last night; it wanted a nice, big salad to balance that sesame chicken and rice. Those few extra pounds left around my middle were hoping for self-control ’cause they really want to be gone. And my mind wanted to continue the journey to looking really great for my daughter’s wedding.

So today as I nurse my bloated stomach I’m reminding those taste buds who is in control!

How about you?

Is a part of you running the whole of you?

Let’s take control!

Note: Still haven’t had time to dig into my weight loss journal so we can return to the daily chronicling, but didn’t want to leave you neglected too long, so I thought I’d share briefly what I’m thinking today. Hope to get back on track with the journal soon.

Weight Loss Journey Day 61

Darn those two pieces of Christmas candy! Pretty much exactly the amount of calories I was over 1200  . . . weird to think of life this way, of how something so small can impact a goal so easily. ~December 23, 2012

Real Time Update:

MadetoCraveDevotional1591

Thanks to the Made to Crave Devotional by Lysa TerKeurst I’ve been thinking a lot about the word, “consider.” Her thoughts, along with my own calorie tracking journey, have also led me to think about the word, “mindful.”

So much of the journey to weight loss and health is simply learning to be mindful of my choices. What I am putting in my mouth? Is this a healthy choice? If I eat this now, how do I need to eat later to be healthy and meet my weight loss goal? How much water have I had? Have I made movement a priority?

Part of being mindful is considering the motivation behind my choices. Why am I choosing to eat this? Am I seeking to fill an emotional need that will still be unfulfilled? Am I hungry? Am eating because of I’m tired? Is there a choice that would meet my need more directly? Maybe I need to eat something different, or maybe I don’t need food at all. Maybe I need a nap, a walk, a talk with a friend–or God.

In Made to Crave Lysa said to “consider the joy.” She pointed her readers to the joy that’s coming from the result of good choices. I’m not yet at my goal, but this is already a reality for me.  I have much joy in being stronger, healthier, more energetic, and thinner.

As I continue to make lifestyle changes, I bet I’ll need to stay mindful, to consider the why’s and to think about the consequences and rewards for the rest of my life.

I’m still growing in this attempt. I’m much improved but not perfect. With the good nutrition of the Life Force and BENew products I’m on, my cravings for unhealthy food are much reduced. However, when intense times hit I still struggle.

This week my husband had a four hour procedure on his heart. I’d forgotten how it felt to have my insides screaming for chocolate and Fritos, but sitting in the surgery waiting room staring at the vending machine was a poignant reminder.

Thankfully, I’d prepacked  healthy choices: my BEFull shake, a tangelo, walnuts, dried cranberries, and some spinach leaves. I even packed a pretty plate and a real fork. I ate one meal out, and it was healthy. I walked to the restaurant, so I got over a mile of walking in.

My downfall was Jerry’s second meal tray late in the evening. Surgery over, he was in his hospital room enjoying his second meal of salmon.

I ate his pound cake.

It wasn’t even good.

It wasn’t comforting. it wasn’t tasty. It didn’t satisfy my junk food craving. It didn’t reduce my stress level.

Why on earth did I eat the whole thing?

Even as I ate I realized I was making a choice NOT to consider why I did it or how it went against my goals. I even chose to ignore how tasteless it was and the fact I didn’t even like it. I just kept taking the next bite even as I knew I ate out of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion and even as I knew the pound cake was not helping.

I just didn’t care.

Funny thing. Today I DO care.

What About You?

Have you reached for something in a high stress situation that didn’t satisfy?

Real Time Information about BENew

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Ben Mueller who wrote this post. I almost didn’t honor him with a picture considering he’s wearing a Vikings jersey when he lives in Denver!

Taking a break from my regular posts to share one written by Ben Mueller, a friend of mine who was also a beta tester. He has approached the weight loss differently than I did, and I thought his information might help someone out. From Ben:

I want to set up reasonable expectations for your weight loss while using the Benew Weight Loss System. Unfortunately, we live in a society where everything that we want to happen needs to have happened YESTERDAY. Basically, we want our lives changed overnight. But, we all know what the truth is; “Anything worth anything takes hard work AND time!”.

I have been using the Benew Weight Loss System myself since the beginning of November (’12). When I was asked to be part of the beta test group for this product, I did not follow the protocol that was laid out for us. This included; calorie restriction, more exercise, following a meal plan, etc. Why did I do this? I wanted to see exactly what the effectiveness of the product would be. As we all know, if we restrict caloric intake and exercise more, we will lose weight, but before I started talking to people about this system, I wanted to know that the products did what they said they would do.

I have worked out for the last 25 years, so that was not an issue. I would just maintain my same workouts (45 minutes cardio per day and each muscle group lifted once per week). My caloric intake stayed at about 3,000 calories per day and, my ability to maintain a loving relationship with Peanut Butter did not change!

The first week of using the system, I lost 6 pounds. This could have been due to the detoxification process (Bepure). I replaced one meal per day with the chocolate Befull. I actually just added Befull on top of everything I was eating, therefore probably added a few calories on some days, but others I didn’t eat as much, therefore still maintaining 3,000 calories per day. In terms of the Belean, I had one packet when I woke up on an empty stomach, and one before lunch (empty stomach) so I could get the most out of the product as possible.

In the first 6 weeks of using the system, I lost a total of 17 pounds. The ONLY difference between how I approached weight loss before Benew and after was that my workouts grew in intensity because of the energy I was getting from Belean. I literally was working out like I had done while I played college football.

From my 6 weeks until about 9 weeks, I actually gained weight. This was mainly due to the Christmas holiday and my love for homemade fudge!

From week 9 until now, something very magical has occurred. Yes, I was losing some weight on the scale in the beginning, but in the last several weeks, the SHAPE of my body has changed dramatically. My theory is that it took a good 2 months before my base metabolism actually changed enough to where my body became a FAT BURNING MACHINE.

Yes, the Bepure helped my body clean out all the toxins that had gunked up the system and blocked me from being an “efficient organism”. Yes, Befull allowed me to ingest high quality protein in my body for muscle development and to help curb cravings for sugar and such. BUT, Belean, the metabolic enhancer, has been my “saving grace” in my venture to losing weight. The combination of the Green Coffee Bean, White Kidney Bean, Meratrim, Raspberry Ketones, Green Tea, etc, has actually been exactly what it promised to be; a natural way to significantly increase my base metabolism!

Overall; I have lost 28 pounds, my pants went from a 42 to a 36, I have increased muscle mass significantly (or maybe I can just see more of the muscle due to decreased fat), and my energy has sky rocketed.

MY WIFE: Jessica, my wife, got on the Benew Weight Loss System the same time I did and did NOT change her eating habits significantly either. She had almost the same exact results as I did. It took her metabolism two months to really get into a fat burning state. She was beautiful before, but now it as a place where she is happy with how she looks and has had to go do some serious clothes shopping!

IMPORTANT: As I stated above, I did not follow the protocol that was laid out in front of me when starting this system because I wanted to see how the products affected me. I would NOT suggest that you do this. Obviously, if you combine all the tools that the Benew Weight Loss System has, you should have even better results. If you take the products as suggested, follow the meal & fitness plans as best as possible, and get plugged into “Benew Nation” on Facebook, there is no stopping you!

POSSIBLE STUMBLING BLOCKS:
As I have stated above, you absolutely need to give this System 3 months to get to maximum benefit. With our 90 day, 100% money back guarantee, there is no reason that you can’t give it the necessary time. If you aren’t satisfied, get your money back. With that being said, please read the following information in terms of things that you may notice while on the product;

1) You may have to decrease the amount of Belean that you are ingesting in the beginning. For some people, we have noticed that it gives them TOO MUCH energy and they have a hard time sleeping at night. If this is the case, please start by taking 1/2 packet every morning and that’s it. After 5 days, move to 1/2 packet twice a day. After another 5 days, move to 1 1/2 packets per day, and within 5 days, move up to 2 packets per day.

2) You may GAIN weight in your first week! This has everything to do with WATER RETENTION. It does not mean that the products aren’t working, because in fact, they are. Any time that we are using detoxification products or start a weight loss regiment, our bodies tend to hold on to water, especially when we introduce a metabolic enhancer. When the body heat increases in a person, we hold on to water just like on a hot summer day, our bodies get a little “swelled”. Again, don’t panic, just keep going!

3) The typical healthy weight loss figure that has been published by experts in the weight loss industry, is 1-2 pounds per week. Therefore, do not panic if, in the first month, you only lose 4-8 pounds. When people drop weight too quickly, the propensity for it to come back increases many fold. Just keep trucking along and you will eventually get to your goal weight.

4) You HAVE TO give this system 3 months in order to realize the full benefit. No, this isn’t a sales gimic, but rather being realistic. Yes, you should lose some weight in your first month using the product, but it takes time to get the metabolic engine burning efficiently. Remember that it did not take just a month to get our bodies into the shape it was before Benew, therefore, it is going to take some time to get out. The MAIN CAUSE of being overweight is our METABOLIC STATE. Our metabolism has been set at a very inefficient position for a long time, therefore, when introducing the ingredients that are in Belean, our metabolism is going to take its sweet time in starting to really burn at a speed where massive weight loss is happening.

5) Weighing ourselves daily is not a smart thing to do. Because of water retention and other factors, our weight can bounce all over the place. The REAL test is in how our clothes fit. Therefore, I suggest weighing yourself one time per week.”

Weight Loss Journey Day 40

It’s sort-of shocking that this woman who was afraid to walk alone now craves it. As much as I miss being with Jerry, who still can’t walk because of a back injury, I love this quiet space with myself, God, and the blue sky.

I awoke today with thoughts of Sabbath rest and have been processing all day. I exercised a lot this week, but feel a need to be more quiet today. I enjoyed lighting some candles and making herb tea (no calories!) and reading a novella. The guys were watching football, and I felt lonely. Decided to take a walk, not for exercise, but for rest and sunshine. I didn’t walk fast and only walked about a mile. I stopped often. Sat by a little creek. Enjoyed park benches. Eventually I ended up at a second tiny park, and listened to Scripture on my phone while waiting for the sunset. I think God is teaching me to be alone and content.advent

Once back home I craved advent worship. I dug around until I found the advent candles I bought after season last year and put them out. Then I lit candles and found a hymnal with carols in it. I sang for a while, read an advent devotional on-line, and longed for Jesus to come to me in a new way this season.

Real Time Update:

I hope the next few posts don’t confuse anyone! Remember, I’m sharing journal entries from roughly 2 months ago so that puts us back in December. The next month or so will have several posts referring to the holidays (AND, thank to BeNew I kept losing during the holidays, including 5 pounds the week of Christmas!)

It dawned on me yesterday that some of you may have not noticed I have a weight loss tips page at the top of my blog.  Hopefully, you can get some ideas there. It’s simple stuff, like how licorice tea curbs sugar cravings, or that it’s good not to eat after 7:30.

How About You?

I’d LOVE to hear little tips that have helped you on your journey to a healthier, more slender body. And if you don’t mind me adding them to my blog, let me know.