This lovely photo was taken by a friend out her dining room window. It says peace to me. I would love that kind of place in my house. Yes, I LOVE my home and I try very hard to make it simple and peaceful and inviting. But first, it is a cat home; cats and fresh flowers are not a good combo. My cats love to chew on the blossoms once I put them in a vase on the table.
And since I’m madly in love with my kitties, and all kitties to be honest, it is a sacrifice I make. I will enjoy others’ peaceful sitting spots and be envious! Not really….
Well, the envious part.
There are so many areas in which I am developing new habits that I decided I need to do updates on a regular basis. Weekly seems too often. Maybe every other week. Since this is the 3rd Monday, I think I will set aside the first and third Monday each month to update all the areas of (hopeful) growth.
NOT BUYING IT
Not shopping has not been very hard, because I do not think I am a shopper at heart. In most areas. The one that causes me the greatest struggle is BOOKS. Every time I am told of a book that I think I need to read, I check the library first. If it is an older book I have a decent chance of finding it there. If it is a Christian book, the chances go down. If it is new or newer, not so great. Maybe that speaks of necessary patience. Not so great at that. And here’s the thing: so often, I get the book and years later it is still unread. Or I check it out from the library, and 6 weeks later I return it unread? Why?
Here is the game I have started to play: when I hear of a book that I just think I cannot live without, I put it in my Amazon cart. That’s it; I simply put it in the cart. Something about that action satisfies something in my brain, and I stop thinking about it. Currently my cart contains 6 or 7 books that I probably won’t ever buy. But this way, if I ever get a gift card, I know what to spend it on. And I can keep checking the library.
One thing I have thought about is a set of rules for normal grocery shopping. I find myself spending more than I need to on groceries, maybe because I can?
With a series of medical tests, Little Lovely finds herself on a special diet and some new medicine, WHICH MIGHT BE WORKING!! And she finds herself anxiety med free!! She weaned off her Zoloft, because she felt like the Lord was asking her to. I am so proud of her; I have no words that would be enough. But in the name of helping her ease into what she was seeing as hard and harsh, I spent more on groceries than I needed to.
So with my raw and her vegan FODMAP diet, the kind of stuff I need to buy is limited.
But there is the whole eating out thing? I left eating out in my budget and not as part of the Not Buying It campaign because chatting over lunch is a vital part of how I get to know people and stay in touch with their lives. I am not sure if I might need to eliminate eating out and find new ways to build relationships?
The decision I made to start July 1 (payday) is to physically hit the bank on the 2nd and put all my grocery money in 4 envelopes. I used to do this and should not have stopped. It worked well for me. Each week, that is the money I have for groceries and eating out.
I think I am going to do a couple days of watermelon. I have actually been craving watermelon lately! One thing I am not getting enough of, I think, is greens. For reasons unknown to me, smoothies are not what I am going for lately? I typically love them, but for some reason, lately, I have preferred other stuff? I am trying to eat 85% raw or greater.
And in all honesty, eating out ruins this more often than not. Another reason to nix or highly curtail the restaurant eating.
My goal is to finish the summer and continue on with a raw lifestyle. I have some raw e-books that I got over the last years, that I am starting to go through to have a collection of recipes to go to. The restrictions that Little Lovely has on her diet has made it next to impossible to find a salad dressing that works for her. Plain old oil and apple cider vinegar is the only thing so far. But I have a Melissa Raimondi book for raw eating that has tons of fruity dressings that would be great for her.
And over the years, there were others, too. So what I may do is get the e-books printed (a small expense at work) and then for $3, I will go to Staples and get it spiraled. Not right now, but soon. Maybe? I might be the most indecisive person lately??
This is certainly the hard spot for me, but one day I am going to say it is the SWEET spot for me! I am just going to keep pressing forward and sinking deeper and deeper roots into the word of God.
What tends to happen to me is that I keep broadening the circle of “things I do” each day in the form of Bible studies, stuff to read, etc. But I get so many that they just become a distraction. Instead of having a singular focus, it gets so broad that I no longer can pull it together into a “sensical” bunch of thoughts and make it applicable? Smaller content means a better ability for application. So here’s What I am reducing my daily Jesus routine down to:
Prayer. I begin with prayer but I keep it open and ongoing the entire time I am sitting. I journal my prayer time and my application time and anything else I need to remind myself of later
Verse practice. Since memorizing Scripture is a blessing God has made me capable of, I have quite a bit that I want to recite over a two week period of time. I have been working on getting it spread out evenly over the 14 days.
She Reads Truth study. Right now it is the books of I and II Corinthians. This will be my one and only “study” book.
Chronological Bible. I have made it to where Ruth fits chronologically into the book of Judges; right before the time of Samson being a judge. But this reading is probably my favorite as it is straight out of scripture with no commentary. Just me and the Lord, wrestling through stuff.
My goal each day is to tithe my time with the Lord, just as I tithe my money and my talents in serving. So for me, that is a 2 1/2 one on one time with my Savior. As an early riser, I most often get this in before work.
So there’s my three prong progress report. As I talked about earlier,weight loss is not going well, but I also have committed to not being on the scale over the summer months. I have to continue to dedicate my eating to the Lord and figure out how that should look. That is what I am practicing all summer.