Here’s to the ones who dream…

Ok, everyone, you should know I do not use this blog as a place to typically put a pitch in for anything. But if you haven’t seen Lalaland, go see it! I don’t care what your “interests” are. If you have aspirations to do ANYTHING with your life… go watch this film. It is artistic and lovely, and it may not be the perfect fairy tale. But it will hopefully inspire you to dream a little more and truly live – not just exist. 

Something I personally drew from this film was to live in the moment, and live whatever stage I am in to the fullest. It’s ok if I’m 26 and just beginning my college journey. Because it’s never to late to get better and pursue those dreams! 

Beyond the binge 

 I wanted to take just a moment to confess to anyone who may be reading or following this page. However, I’m not coming here to wallow in my choices or complain that I am still 5-10 lbs from my “goal” BMI. I know that the keys to health and vitality are not numbers. The key to leanness isn’t starving yourself. And the key to health is consistancy. As an amateur “health blogger”, I feel the need to be fully transparent and say – “we make mistakes too!” 

With that said, I may or may not have had cookies and ice cream for dinner last night… 😬 it’s that time of month and I caved. After visiting the grocery store for a couple of items, I walked down the forbidden snack aisle right to the cookies. What could go better with my low sugar cocoa infused Halo Top than some luscious, gluten-free animal cookies!? I must have taken the bag from the shelf and replaced it 3 different times before it finally found it’s way in my basket to the check-out. My resistance almost won out! “It could be worse”, I thought to myself. 

The issue I’ve found isn’t that I had some “sweets” or junk food. It’s that I ate 6 out of 8 servings of said snacks. 

You see, the problem with a binge for me doesn’t lie in how often I take the plunge. It would be safe to say that it may occur once a month or LESS. This is a far leap from an almost every night battle I dealt with in high school. But the real struggle is appetite over hunger. My brain will get caught up in the pleasure and forget to turn off the craving for more. Appetite wins out. Now, if I’m honest, that’s all it was. A craving. And I know that those are possible to overcome. It’s just habit. And for me, I like to come to you with accountability, and most importantly, honesty. It helps me to be honest, and I hope it helps you. 

I recently presented a project in my Psychology class on eating disorders with a focus on Binge Eating Disorder. It is amazing how many people do not see this as a psychological problem, disorder, or disease. I believe this is like any other addiction that causes you to feel out of control and then shameful. 

However, I woke up today feeling better than before. I woke up hopeful, knowing that mistake didn’t own me. I drank lots of water, came prepared to school and ate a healthy breakfast and lunch, and I’m feeling much better today! 

Final thought: be honest and don’t let your mistakes own you. God breaks every chain and we can chose every day to be better than the last – even if we take a couple steps back, run full force forward again. 🤗

Jules

A New Day

Here we are – January 20, 2017

As I look up at the television glaring back at me in the school fitness center, I step onto the oliptical. I begin my workout – my time. My meditation. I watch as Mrs Obama enters the scene. Then former president Obama and Biden casually arrive. Finally Mr Donald Trump enters through the elegant double doors, onto the red presidential carpet. This is America’s royalty. The speech was short. The prayers were gracious. A light rain graced Trump as he took the stand – as Franklin Graham said – “as a blessing”. Throughout the streets, pressure grenades can be heard as lines of police move in to surround the antics of a thousand protesters. And before I knew it, the Obama’s were off the scene before the luncheon begins to commence. 

After the luncheon, the parade began. It was a very simple show. No fancy banners. No ticker tape. No extravagance beyond the classic patriotic band marching along. As the limousine that carries the new President slowly makes its way closer to the White House, we see thousands of protesters lining the street.  Finally, the moment arrives as the limo, fondly referred to as “the beast”, comes to a stop. The First family exit the vehicle and walk down Pensyvania Avenue past the international Hotel stamped with his namesake. What are his thoughts? What is Melania thinking as she grabs for his hand with her own perfectly gloved match? Fear, Anticipation? Hopes, dreams? Fulfillment, Sacrifice? The parade is short. And so begins a new legacy.

Welcome to the presidency Mr Trump. 

God bless.

Welcome to 2017!

Well everyone, welcome to a brand new year! I know it’s been some time since I last updated regularly. School has kep me busy. 😉 

But here we are in 2017! I’m not posting any resolutions. Not because I’m afraid I’ll fail them, but because our lives are not meant to be one temporary fix to another, but rather a journey of transformation. 

I do however believe in words to meditate on for the year. This year, I really felt I heard the word “change”. Good change! Things in the natural seem to be changing – school, work, schedules, Keith’s fighting, etc. I believe we are genuinely growing and pursuing more without fear. And I believe that is a transfer supernaturally. I have a renewed desire to be with God, in his presence and to prophecy. I believe, like Melissa Hesler said, our Perspective needs to shift into CONFIDENT sons and daughters. 

My husband recently asked me what my favorite “promise” of God was. Well I haven’t been reading His word as much as I used to, but the first thing out of my mouth was “He that is IN ME is greater than He that is in the world”. You see at the end of last year I was battling some anxiety. Then through lots of prayer it began to shed off of me. I won’t say it doesn’t come back, but even for a moment, I got the right perspective. When it feels like the world is literally caving in and pushing on all sides – you are stronger because HE is with you! So good. I’ve been reminded of these things several times in several ways over the past 2-3 weeks. We were recently at OneThing in Kansas City over New Years. Wow, so much joy and refreshment came on that trip – and a renewed mind and desire for purity. Lots of words were spoken over me. Lots of prophecy. Lots of joy. Lots of healing. Even prophetic dreams! But when I returned, Keith got sick. Not severely, but enough that he was confined to his bed for a week. I was so full of Joy, it was easy to clean and take care of, not just him but the whole house! A week later and I let some anger back in. I let distracting and disappointing thoughts and anxiety back in. Even just for a moment. The next day, I woke up sick. 

Is it really that simple? A mental shift can do that much? So today it was worse and we decided to still go to church looking like a hot mess… together. When we got home I had had enough. I sat just thinking about things. Anxiety started again. School and work at tomorrow! I have so much to do! I’m tired! I should find a sub! 

No. that is not my portion. I could sulk in my sickness and expect to be waited on by Keith who is not a little better than me, but instead I asked him to pray. Not like “get better” or “wake up better”. But with a revelation that I am better and it will manifest – like praying for the dead! Just me expressing that seemed to trigger a word. It was like Jesus telling the woman “your faith has made you well”. He said my mentality is what will change it. So I got up and did laundry! Haha 

Let’s have a mental renewing of what we have and who we are. And let’s do our very best to walk in that. I slip and fall so often. I do. But let’s be honest and pick ourselves back up. 

As I started moving around I thought of He words “be healed”. It’s interesting to me that it is not “act healed” or “ask for healing” or “pretend you are healed”. No we say “BE healed”. It is not only creating something, but it is a state in which we can live in! We are human BEINGS. We are. So we ought to likewise BE healed. This reminded me that when we are sick, we do the most to take care of our bodies – no sugar, extra vitamins, tea, broth, essential oils. Why not just live this way? We might never get sick! Haha 

Well, with that said – let’s challenge one another to stir up our healthy bodies, take care of it and our souls. 

Happy 2017! 

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone! I believe 2017 will be a year of great change. God is always willing and on the move, but when we catch a glimps of what He is doing – it changes everything! He longs for us to go to the deep waters or life, where things can be a little risky. It’s there that we really trust and grow and begin to swim farther. 

May this year be full of trust in God and in the steps ahead. May we fully experience His pleasure. And may we step more fully into our calling. 
Here is a post from our recent trip to OneThing in Kansas City over New Years. 

Sweet Potato Souflee

Hey everyone! I hope you had a wonderful thanksgiving! I know mine was truly blessed and very tasty. 😉 

Here is a recipe I made for our thanksgiving spread.  


Sweet Potato Souffle

Ingredients

Souffle:

1/2 cup butter (1 stick), at room temperature

5 medium sweet potatoes

2 large eggs

1/2 cup coconut sugar 

1/4 cup of 100% pure maple syrup

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup heavy cream (or cream substitute)

Pinch of salt

Topping:

1 cup finely chopped pecans

3/4 cup coconut sugar, packed (add xylitol as needed to make the coconut sugar sweeter) 

1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick), softened

Pinch of salt

***

Boil potatos until soft and mash until smooth. Add butter, eggs, coconut sugar, syrup, vanilla, cream and salt until thoroughly combined and smooth. Transfer to a 4 quart casserole dish and smooth the top. 

For the topping, combine pecans, coconut sugar, (xylitol), butter and salt in a separate bowl. Sprinkle and smooth of the top of the sweet potato mixture. 

Preheat the oven to 350F and bake for 40 minutes, until souflee is lightly browned. Enjoy!

*****

May you enjoying this holiday season as Christmas approaches! 

Till next time!

Jules

Calm before the storm? 

Well everyone… we made it. The election is over and we are still alive. I personally have not lost any friends or had to delete anyone from Facebook, so I am very happy about that. 

I will not tell you whom I voted for, just as I did not try to pursuade anyone else’s vote. In all honesty, I had not planned on voting at all. Politics are not my favorite, and it always seemed like a prideful power fight for control. However, I did feel the need to vote against a candidate this year. That is what pushed me to go out and vote. (It’s also convenient that I can literally walk across my street to the town hall!) Now maybe voting against a candidate is just as “prideful” as putting all your trust in your favorite, but for me it was a moral decision. I still can not say I supported either side. 

Having said it was a moral decision, I did what I typically do when election season comes and I PRAYED. I’m very thankful that a lot of my Facebook friends have been posting neutral comments and peaceful statuses. In the end I had to be reminded that whomever is president, Jesus is still King. 

Continue to pray for the nation. The powers that be that control our system are not very pretty. With either side, the more I learned, the more I feared. I will say this – do your research, and keep your spiritual eyes open! I may sound like a pessimist about the world, but I know it only means a sooner return of our King. 

Let us keep the faith and encourage one another. I know I need it! 🙂 

Jules

Back to the books! 

Hey everyone! I apologize if youve been following this blog for any length of time for not being consistently dedicated to updating. I do however have some news and explanation for my absense. This year I decided to go to college for the first time in my life.

You see, I graduated high school in 2009. Soon after, with a series of dramatic events, the Lord led me to Kansas City to intern at the international house of prayer. It was there that God really opened my eyes and I became familiar with Holy Spirit.

After moving back to Ohio later that year, I settled into my minimum wage job and began to fade back to my old life. After Keith (my husband) and I started dating again, it was only about a year and a half later and we got married and went to India for a month long mission trip where I developed more digestion and allergy issues. I was so sick when we came home, I felt like dying. I’ve been recovering and pursuing health ever since then.

In 2012 I would say I was my healthiest. I was eating a “Candida diet” to cleanse my body. I was at my lowest % body fat. I worked out at Bootcamp every day and pretty much had a six pack.

Since then I’ve fallen off the preverbial wagon several times an I am no where near as thin, but I have learned a lot. During this season, I began studying to be a personal trainer through ACE. I was 5 points from passing and wasn’t about to pay over $200 more just to attempt the test again with a 50% chance.

It wasn’t until this year while working at Pure Barre that broke down with compassion for a girl who was in class that I realized I was made to help people. And that helping people get healthy was my passion! My heart strings were pulled and stretched and I knew that “compassion” was from God. So now what? I felt I needed “tools for my toolbox”. And again, my heart strings pulled in one of our small group studies. I wanted to go to school.

So here I am. A month and a half in. I’m majoring in health and fitness technology at Cincinnati State. And I’m excited for the future. It took courage to take the steps needed. “You’re too old”… “you’re too fat”… “you can’t afford it”. So many thoughts told me I couldn’t do it. But I’m glad I dove in head first.

I want to thank everyone who has prayed for me and lifted me up while on this journey. I especially want to thank my parents who have supported my decisions and given me the emotional support to try new things.

Love you all!

Jules

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Stuffed ‘Shrooms

So a few weeks ago my husband went to a special work event and indulged in some of the best stuffed mushrooms he’s ever had. I was disappointed I missed the evening and delicacy, so he promptly came home and whipped up his own batch for me. My husband had never been afraid to try new things in the kitchen and has always been the better chef.

I have not been able to find the recipe he used to modify, but here is an easy one I found online: (food.com)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Clean mushrooms, remove stems.

Chop stems, and the one extra mushroom.

Heat olive oil in sauté pan.

Add chopped stems and the one extra mushroom.

Halfway through cooking add crushed garlic, salt and pepper.

Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly in a small mixing bowl.

Add ricotta and 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan.

Fill caps with the cheese mixture and place on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray.

Sprinkle remaining Parmesan on top.

Bake for approx 20-25 minutes.


(This is a REAL photo of my hubby’s results… I think I ate half the tray!)

Jules