Friday, May 30, 2008

Day One + New Chickens!

So I started the Isagenix today. I got my product yesterday and was reading up on it and realized I hadn't quite understood how it worked. But I started the shake stuff today and will do the two day cleanse on Monday and Tuesday. Today wasn't that bad. What it consisted of was 'breakfast' of 1 oz of nasty muck, an 8 oz. Shake, and what they call an accelerator tablet. For lunch I had another 8 0z shake and another accelerator tablet. I thought I would be revished and starving, happily I wasn't. I wanted to eat, don't get me wrong, but I wasn't exactly hungry, just habitual. They have these snack things which are similar to those chewable Vitamin C's, but chocolate-chalk flavor. They are something you're supposed to eat if you get hungry. I held the first one in my hand, looked a it--then looked at my loaf of bread--then looked at it again--then thought of the 1/2 gallon of Starlight Mint ice cream--then ate it. A friend had told me to suck on them for a minute before you chew them up, and I think that helped but it still wasn't delicious. However, it did seem to curb my appetite which was totally weird.

For dinner I made cream of broccoli soup and homemade rolls--relishing every bite. I'm supposed to keep it to 600 calories--I ate until I was full. I drank a ton of water througout the day, they say to take your weight, divide it by two and drink that amount in ounces. I think I drank more than that because every time I thought of something yummy to eat I drank instead.

I got a ton done around the house, another part of distracting myself from the kitchen. I organized the storage room and guest bedroom downstairs and moved the 9 buckets of wheat that have been in the middle of the hallway for three weeks. It was really quite effective, and I have LOTS of those kinds of things to do so it's all good. As far as energy, I haven't felt 'buzzed' or super energized, but I didn't want a nap today and I haven't been irritable. I can easily chalk that all up to the fact that my mind is so focused on the program that I have no time to think about how the world is out to get me--go figure!

Anyway, I've also been looking on for some chickens, trying to find something close by and I totally lucked out. I went up to Wellsville and got 6 super cute bantams. Bantams are 1/2 size chickens with feathers on their feet and they waddle when they walk. They lay small eggs, three bantam eggs are equal to 2 standard size eggs and they are just so dang cute! I've raised them in the past but didn't have any so I'm thrilled to have them. And they are funky looking. I'm gunna take some photos tomorrow cause I know y'all are dying to see how freaking cute they are!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Here come summer

I've had a couple people e-mail me to see if I'm okay--I am so stop worrying, unless your worry was going to translate into sending my money, then you can worry all you want.

The last couple months have been, in a word, hectic. Spring soccer, multitudes of recitals, year end performances, award thingamagigs, and trying to get the yard up to par has sapped me of most of my free time. I've been writing here and there, but I simply had to throw some things in the back of the closet in order to survive the month--blogging was one of them, as was Jazzercise, doing my hair, and cooking dinner. I can honestly say I can't wait for summer this year! I can also say I will never ever ever ever put my kids in spring soccer again. I just can't take it. I freeze my butt off, spend half the day every Saturday running between the different fields (AYSO uses different schools for different age groups) and then my kids are the first one to volunteer to sit out. I'll do indoor in the fall but I'm done with sitting outside in the rain. Send me hate mail if you wish--I recycle.

So, I turned 34 on Monday. No biggie. Birthdays have never been all that neurotic for me, I've always felt older than I am and so I feel like I'm just catching up with myself. We'd gone camping for the weekend which was super fun and we came back a day early to beat the rain, which we did. My hubby was sweet and gave me a wonderful day. AND for my birthday he paid for me to get a 30 day Isagenix thingy. I've never done these kinds of things--body cleanse, meal replacement hoodoo things--but my sister has had some great success with this system so I'm giving it my own cynical try. I'll be starting on Monday--after fast Sunday--and I'm really surprised by just how dang scared I am.

Yep, scared.

First, why I'm doing it. Though Isagenix makes a big deal about weight loss, that's not my main reason. I am 25 pounds heavier then when I got married--but I was 18 and a size 2 back then. I'm not planning to revert. I'd like to be ten pounds slimmer, but if I knew I could stay the size I am right now for the rest of my life, I'd be happy. I've always had a kind metabolism, but I also eat fairly healthy too. I'm not an over eater, but I am an indulgent eater. If I want chocolate, I eat chocolate. I won't eat a big huge candybar, but I'll eat a hand full of M&Ms three times a day if I'm in the mood. If I want leftover stroganoff and a cheese sandwich for lunch, I eat it. I've had 5 peices of my birthday cake since Monday. After I turned 30 I noticed that my body wasn't as forgiving. I could no longer eat a dozen cookies three days a week and still fit into my skirt for Sunday--but I could still eat half a dozen. Anyway, I've been very lucky in that regard.

However, the big reason I'm doing the Isagenix thing is because I need some balance emotionally and mentally. I've never had anxiety issues or been what I would call high-stress, but I find myself awake at night worrying, venting more often, and just feeling lousy. I'm sure some of it has to do with the phase of life I'm in with my kids getting older and needing so much support, and some of it likely has to do with some family stuff going on, but I know I could be dealing with it better. I'm always tired--always--and I can't seem to get enough sleep, yet I can't sleep in. I need more energy and I feel certain that I'm simply out of balance with myself. The Isagenix system claims to be all about balance, filling your reserves of vitamins and minerals that you don't get from a typical diet. So, I'm going to give it a shot and see where it takes me.

So why am I scared? I just don't know if I can hack it. I'm very busy, and a lot of my time is spent preparing and cleaning up food. I'm surrounded by food, and four kids who eat it, and I'm used to eating what I want when I want. I might feel guilty later, especially when something doesn't fit or I have to try on a bigger size than I did last time, but though I try and pay attention to what I eat, I still eat what I want. For example, this morning I've had two microwave s'mores. Health food, I'm sure, because I only had two...oh wait, I ate one of #4's too, so I had three--but I wanted six! I think I should get points for what I DON'T eat, but, well, it doesn't work that way.

I've been scouring the internet for info on the Isagenix system, success stories, and things like that. Most of the stories I found are linked to someone trying to sell the stuff, so I have a hard time swallowing it hook line and sinker. My sister's success is a huge motivator, and I found a couple blogs, but I was surprised how little objective stuff was available. I'm hoping to offer something a bit more fair minded. My husband has done plans similar to this in the past, and it didn't convert us, but I'm going to give this two months and see what the end results are.

I hope no one thinks I came out of hiding for a sales pitch--certainly not. But I wanted a place to be accountable too and hopefully this will be it. Hopefully I'll also be feeling better and less frazzled so that I'll want to come back to blogland more often--that would be nice.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Author Interview with Tristi Pinkston~Season of Sacrifice

Shortly after joining LDStorymakers some six or so years ago, I met a spunky new writer by the name of Tristi Pinkston. She was a very young mom of three, with ambition, optimism, and enthusiasm in spades. Since that first introduction is has been my absolute pleasure to get to know her. We have not always seen eye to eye on every issue--both of us editing each others work and giving back less-than-stellar feedback that irked us--however, we have also both admitted to being better writers because of the honesty of one another.
A few years ago, Tristi had a project that seized her by both wrists and would not let her go. She put all her other projects aside and dove head first into this story--a true life story from her family history about the hole-in-the-rock pioneers that settled San Juan county in southern Utah. Until reading her account I had NO idea that it took such an amazing feat of engineering to get those wagons through the hole-in-the-rock. Not only is the story about this incredible event, but amid this piece of church history, is also the story of people--people with an amazing faith that is truly inspiring.
With that introduction in place, here is my interview with Tristi:

1) Of the characters in this book, which one was the most fun for you to either learn about or write about?

I enjoyed each of them, but I'd have to say the one I enjoyed the most was Ben. He had a sense of humor that really appealed to me. He was a little rough around the edges -- he swore when the situation called for it, but his faith and dedication to the Lord was incredible. He was very human.

2) How long did this book take to write?

This is the only book I actually timed, and I only timed it because people ask me how long it takes me to write a book. (See, I came prepared!) This book took eighty hours of research and eighty hours to write. No, that's not typical for me. This book practically wrote itself.

3) I know the publishing houses aren't accepting books on polygamy, and you considered removing the polygamy from this story. You chose to keep the story intact. Can you explain to us your reasons for your decision?

There are a few factors that led me to my decision.

First, the faith and obedience that saw these pioneers through the Hole also saw them through their trial with polygamy. To tell one part of their story, and not the other, would deny them the recognition they deserve for the things they did.

Second, I don't feel we have to be ashamed of our polygamous past. I could never do it myself, but when I read accounts of faithful men and women who practiced it righteously, I'm so inspired by their stories.

Third, I can't tell the story of me without including the polygamy. I come through the second wife. It's a part of my heritage.

And fourth, I feel my best writing ever is included in the last section of the book. The message was so powerful, it picked me up and swept me along with it, and I was just there for the ride.

It wasn't an easy choice to make. I really agonized over it for about three days. What it all boiled down to, though, was this: Am I writing this book to tell the story, or aren't I? Polygamy is part of the story. So I wrote it.

4) If there was one all encompassing message you want readers to take away from this book, what would it be?

I would like people to come away from this book truly feeling that with God, nothing is impossible. Those pioneers should not have been able to accomplish what they did. Modern engineers have gone down to the Hole in the Rock site and declared they couldn't have done it, even with all their technology. That journey was led by God, inspired by God, and directed by God. You can't expect some cliffs to stop faithful, devoted servants of the Lord -- they'll find a way.

5) Polygamy is a hot topic, and a difficult thing for many members of the church to make sense of--what are your personal thoughts on plural marriage and how did writing this book influence that?

I've always hated the idea, personally. As I wrote the book, I really struggled with the passages that showed Sarah's struggle to accept Ben's proposal. I completely understood her refusal, but I couldn't wrap my mind around her acceptance. Finally, I made an important realization. Sarah didn't marry Ben because she became converted to polygamy. She married Ben because she was converted to the Lord, and she believed the Lord had commanded their union.

It's important to keep in mind that at the time polygamy was practiced, there was a shortage of worthy men. Many sisters had lost their husbands to mobs, to accidents, to starvation and cold. As the Saints settled in Utah and their numbers began to increase, the need to practice polygamy diminished. By the time the Manifesto was issued in 1890, the Saints were able to marry one man to one woman because the numbers were more even.

Writing the book made me more sensitive to this situation. It also made real for me the very intense emotional struggles involved all the way around. The men asked to practice polygamy didn't think about it as heaven on earth, having their own brothel -- they went into it reluctantly, not wanting to hurt their beloved sweethearts. When polygamy was practiced the way it was intended, it was never about sex. (Do you want me saying sex on your blog?? :) Change that if you want to) It was about seeing to the financial and protection needs of the women.

6) I know you're a huge advocate of family history, what has inspired that love of genealogy and what is your advice to other people that don't know where to start?

I am a huge advocate of it and I've always felt very close to my departed ancestors. As far as the actual performing of the actual genealogy, um, well, I don't know. That would be my husband's passion. He has a blog at and you can send all your questions his way. Me, I sit down at the computer and immediately go blank. I'd much rather write books about them then try to find them on a chart.

So, there you have it. For more information on Season of Sacrifice, go to Tristi's website