I’ve Been Hit!

Well folks, I’ve got a touch of the flu and I’m miserable, so I don’t know how inspirational this weeks post will be..or if there will be any posts. No matter what, Inspiration365 will pick back up where it left off. Pray for a sista!

 

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With God All Things Are Possible

I watched this show called This Time Next Year, and on it, there was a young man who was wheelchair bound after a car accident. His doctors told him he would never walk again, but he was determined to do it anyway. He confidently stated that with God the impossible is possible.

And you know what? After a year of therapy, he walked out on that stage! It inspired me so much that I had to share it. God’s word says that we can do all things throught Christ which gives us strength. No matter what you’re facing, even if the odds are stacked against you, with God it’s possible to overcome it.

Happy Sunday! ♥

You Are Beautiful. You Are Loved.

I’ve already told you guys about my green smoothie fail earlier this week. But, even though I didn’t succeed completely, I did enjoy some of the process. Part of that process was meditation, and during one of my meditation sessions, I discovered a wonderful affirmation.

Something rose up in my spirit and said the following; “You are beautiful. You are loved.”

Isn’t that profound? Two simple phrases that resonated in the depths of my soul.

Many of you may not know that I’ve never thought of myself as pretty. I’ve always felt inferior to the natural beauty of all of my sisters. I considered myself the creative one, always ready to tell a funny story or lend a helping hand. But never even in the same league as them looks wise. Besides that, I had daddy issues to rival the best of them, so accepting that I am special and loved took a long time as well.

So you can see why the meditation mantra that swelled within me was so significant. The truth that I am beautiful in my own unique way, and that I am loved beyond measure were both statements that I needed to hear…that I needed to feel.

And maybe you do, too.

You are beautiful. You are loved.

Let that sink in. Let it penetrate your being and hold it in your heart.

Go Faith! It’s Yo’ Birthday! Get Busy! Go! Go! Go!

If you’re a true old school millennial, and a product of the 80’s, then you totally get the title reference. Today’s my birthday and I’m glad about it! There’s so much to be grateful for, and so many blessings that I know I don’t deserve. But isn’t that what grace is? God’s unmerited favor, given to us over and over again.

That being said, I’m not a fan of winter. So, I typically choose to celebrate my birthday in March. Because of that, I don’t have any out of the ordinary plans today. I’ll complete a video interview for a contract I’m seeking (blazer on the top, pajama pants on the bottom all the way), take two online tests for another, do some homework and my mother’s hair. Tomorow, I’ll go out to eat with my extended family to celebrate my mama’s birthday (ours is 10 days apart), and that’ll be wonderful. But that’s it, nothing special.

The difference is that I’ll still feel special because XX amount of years ago, I entered the world, sans fingernails with my hair sticking straight up, just like Don King. Do I know how to make an entrance or what? I was a month early, eager to begin the adventure of life here on earth, and I’ve been a wide-eyed dreamer ever since.

I’m grateful to still be a dreamer, even after living through so many nightmares. I love my optimism and faith in the face of opposition. That’s what I’m celebrating today. I’m here, decades later, still believing that hope springs eternal. Still believing that the good always outweighs the bad.

Still believing that this is going to be my best year ever!

Sometimes We Fail…

Sometimes we fail, y’all. It’s a fact of life I was reminded of when I set out to survive a green smoothie cleanse. Let me explain. I had high hopes of emerging from a long detox regimen with glowing, flawless skin, a flattened stomach and relief from the joint pain that plagues me do the inflammation in my body caused by chronic disease.

I went to the store with my mother, who generously offered to pay for half of the groceries in my cart that was loaded with spinach, frozen fruit, almond coconut milk and kale. I ordered some plant-based protein powder off Amazon, and busted open the box my sister’s Ninja blender arrived in well over a month ago. I scheduled several posts in advance for this blog and completed my school work so that when the detox symptoms set in, I wouldn’t have to try to think with brain fog. I was all set, and prepared for overwhelming success.

Until day 2.5 on the cleanse. Let me tell you something; days three and four of any sort of detox program is meant to separate the strong from the weak. It’s where heroes are born and you get to see exactly what you’re made of. Apparently, I’m made of the desire for something to chew!

I tried to hold out, you guys. I sat in my bed, watching Friends and noticing how borderline racist and outrageously fat shaming it is, willing myself to be satisfied with the herbal tea that was supposed to help my detoxing efforts along. But, I wanted a boiled egg so bad I could taste it. The salt, and the instant satiety called to me.

I made every effort to talk myself out of it. I told myself that I had all the nutrients I needed in those darn smoothies I had been drinking. Fat, protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Any desire to eat an egg was not based on actual need, but rather on desire.

Logically, I knew that all of the above was true. But deep down, where my intuition dwells, I didn’t give a hoot! So…I boiled some eggs and ate them. They. Were. Phenomenal. Absolutely everything I thought they would be, and they satisfied me in a way that nothing had in days.

Then the guilt set it. I’d failed. I’d set out to do something, and I didn’t do it. I found myself spiraling down into the black and white thinking that used to make me binge eat at times like this, because I’d already blown it, so I might as well go to town. But, therapy taught me to arrest that kind of thinking, and understand that an all or nothing attitude hadn’t helped me in the past, so it wouldn’t help me then, either.

So, I counted it as a lost, but not the end of the world. Then I re-evaluated my goals for starting the cleanse in the first place. To lessen my pain, clean up my diet, and get a hold of my sweet tooth. I realized that I could accomplish all of those things while eating whole food, so that’s what I’ve decided to do.

I have a smoothie and eggs for breakfast, another smoothie for lunch and a nice dinner. It’s been working. My sugar cravings are almost non-existent, and the ones I do have can be solved with a Larabar. I’ve been sleeping better, I can do squats again without excruciating joint pain, and my energy is off the charts.

So I failed, that much is definitely true. But you know what else? I learned some things about myself along the way. Besides that, I also reaffirmed how much I’ve grown in my relationship with food, and the practice of self-love. I hope that you can see by my little anecdote that even when we fail, if we learn something along the way, it’s not a total loss.

Our failures do not define us. How we respond to them does. I’m choosing to respond with compassion and grace towards myself. I really hope that when, or if, the time comes, you’ll do the same. ♥

When’s the last time you had a goal that you didn’t quite reach? How did you respond?

Extraordinary Lives #Quote

It’s that time again! Are y’all ready for a quote that I’m pretty sure I’m going to make my life’s mantra? Ok, then here goes!

You have so many extraordinary gifts; how can you expect to lead an ordinary life?

Louisa May Alcott, Little Women

Is that not one of the most lovely sentiments you’ve ever read? For more (and if you can believe it, it gets better) go read the full scene from the book here. I read Little Women every year at Christmas when I was a little girl, and it just keeps getting better. Most recently, I’ve been inspired to write simple stories about ordinary people and the extraordinary impact they can have on the world. If I’m able to capture a fraction of what Ms. Alcott did, I’ll count myself a success.

But back to the quote. If you’ve every been discouraged by life not turning out the way you expected it to, remember this quote and remind yourself that sometimes there are plans greater than ours to be had. Embrace it.

 

All Up in My E-Reader! #Books

It’s been a while since I shared the books I’ve read here. I’m horrible about keeping my Goodreads page up to date, but I’m hoping to rectify that soon. Anyway, here’s the first edition of All Up in My E-Reader for 2018!!! I don’t know why I won’t just say all up in my Kindle…I guess because Amazon ain’t breaking me off no coins, lol.

*Click on the pics or titles to be taken to the book’s Amazon page.*

Title: If I Run (If I Run Series)

Author:Terri Blackstock

Description:

Casey Cox’s DNA is all over the crime scene. There’s no use talking to police; they’ve failed her abysmally before. She has to flee before she’s arrested . . . or worse. The truth doesn’t matter anymore.

But what is the truthThat’s the question haunting Dylan Roberts, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. PTSD has marked him damaged goods, but bringing Casey back can redeem him. Though the crime scene seems to tell the whole story, details of the murder aren’t adding up.

Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer. But are Dylan’s skewed perceptions keeping him from being objective? If she isn’t guilty, why did she run?

Unraveling her past and the evidence that condemns her will take more time than he has, but as Dylan’s damaged soul intersects with hers, he is faced with two choices: the girl who occupies his every thought is a psychopathic killer . . . or a selfless hero. And the truth could be the most deadly weapon yet.

My Take: This book was really good! I’m not typically a suspense reader, but my sister is. So I’ve been borrowing a lot of her e-books lately, and came across this one. You don’t often see Christian suspense, at least I don’t. If I Run is light on religion, in my opinion, and heavy on sinister generational plots. I felt sympathy for Casey from day one. The clues were well spaced and subtle, but since I always know what direction books like these will go, I kinda figured out what was going on pretty early. Still, it was an entertaining and a quick read, and I’m planning to continue reading the series. I highly recommend this one!

 

Title: Evelyn, After

Author: Victoria Helen Stone

Description:

Evelyn Tester is sleepwalking through her suburban life—until a late-night phone call startles her awake. Her husband, a prestigious psychiatrist, has been in an accident. And he isn’t alone.

Suddenly Evelyn’s world isn’t as tidy as she thought. And in the midst of it all is Juliette, not only her husband’s secret lover but also his patient. If news of the affair were to get out, it would ruin more than just Evelyn’s marriage. Although it’s a bitter pill for Evelyn to swallow, protecting her family means staying silent—even if, as she begins to discover, the night of the accident has consequences far more dangerous than the unmasking of an affair.

But the more Evelyn learns about Juliette’s picture-perfect life—complete with a handsome, unsuspecting husband—the more she yearns for revenge…and satisfaction. Her growing obsession fuels her rage, burning away her complacency. What will be left of her after it flames out?

My Take: This is one of those books that are rather slow, yet intriguing. It took a while to get going, but still kept my interest all the way through. I would describe it as a Lifetime type plot with a lot more introspection and main character development. It’s great when you’re in the mood for a semi-man bashing, rise of the independent woman story. There were a few moments of what I felt were unnecessary love scenes, but other than that a pleasant read.

 

Title: A Will, A Way, and a Wedding (Dear Daphne Book 4) 

Author: Melody Carlson

Description: As Daphne begins making reluctant plans to let Aunt Dee’s house and life go and pick up the pieces of her fractured life, the guy she’s been dreaming about begins to change his tune. Of course, another huge obstacle pops up at about the same time, threatening to ruin what might finally be true love. Meanwhile, she continues writing the advice column, learning more about love and commitment than she ever thought possible. But will she cinch the deal in time?

My Take:  I just started reading this one yesterday, so I can’t form a full opinion yet. I will say that so far it seems cute. The kind of book you want to curl up with on a rainy day when you’re tired and don’t want to concentrate too much. It’s cozy. I think that it’s definitely the kind of book that you would enjoy more if you’ve read the rest of the series. I’m a rebel, so I jumped in cold, and it’s still good.

That’s it for now! What are y’all reading?