Thursday, October 31, 2013

Working Out with Chronic Fatigue

We all have tiring and busy lives. Therefore, a lot of us make excuses for why we can't workout. But for those that have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) it's even harder.

Battling fatigue is a struggle no matter who you are. Though, if you suffer from CFS, it can be difficult to ever have the energy to workout. This article answers the question of how you can workout even with CFS. No matter what your tiredness level, everyone can do SOMETHING. Maybe it's not a LOT, but even a little adds up and you can continue to build upon it as you feel better.

Always start small. Workout for a few minutes and work your way up. Do exercises that are light and low-impact. Never overdo it! Listen to your body! Know your limits, but still try to challenge yourself as much as you can to do more!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you are having a good week! Personally, I'm feeling really fatigued myself! It's been a full day; including walking around in the rain with my kids (in our costumes) for trick-or-treating lol. Have a safe weekend, everyone! Be infused! God bless you!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Easy Posture Improvement Stretches

Yesterday, I shared some tips and an article about how to reduce back pain. For today's workout Wednesday, I wanted to share a short video on how you can continue to help improve your posture and reduce back pain. This is especially helpful if you have a desk job, or just have a few minutes to sit down and stretch. Many people in the comment section of this video have shared that it really helped them! Click here to check it out! Remember, stretching and exercising your back muscles will build the strength you need and ultimately reduce your pain! Just take it easy!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Next week, I'll be sure to share with you which workout will be the promotional special for November! I can't wait to find out what it is! That being said, this is your LAST CHANCE to order P90X or P90X2 at its amazing low price!! Be infused! God bless you!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

How to Reduce Back Pain

I think a lot of us can admit to having back pain. Maybe you're blessed enough not to have it every day, but most will experience it at some point for some reason or another, 

In this article, there are some helpful tips for helping to prevent back pain. Personally, I need to be more vigilant because I can tell you for certain that these things really do help. One of the tips being posture. Be aware of how you are sitting and standing. Keep yourself as aligned as possible as MUCH as possible, and you won't have as much trouble. I can really tell a difference in how I feel if I've been careless about how I've been sitting or standing. 

One of the big things that I have to do better is in regards to sleep. My chiropractor told me that sleeping on your stomach is the worst thing you can do and to not have my arms above my head and to keep my elbows close to my body. When I made a conscious effort to follow her advice, I not only had less back and neck pain, but I slept better as well. I sometimes sleep on my stomach anyways, but I definitely pay for it! It takes a while to train yourself to sleep on your back or side more. However, if you can do it, you will definitely feel a lot better! I know I do!

Another really crucial thing to do is to have a strong core. Your core isn't just your abs, but all the way around your middle. Having good strength in your abs and back will really help you feel a lot better because your spine will have muscle support. Of course, the way to get muscle is through exercise. Hip Hop Abs and Focus T25 REALLY helped me with my core strength! I highly recommend it! Though, as with any program, modify it if it's too much for you. Listen to your body!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Here's to hoping that we all have a lot less pain to deal with so we can enjoy happy and healthy lives! Be infused! God bless you! :)

Monday, October 28, 2013

Moving Forward

After what I wrote yesterday about not looking back, I was looking for a video on YouTube about moving forward. I found this one, and it's REALLY good! It's a song with that very title by Israel Houghton.

Grace and peace to you, my friends! We are new creations in Christ and He does make all things new! He gives us the strength to move forward and to keep persevering! Amen to that! Be infused! God bless you!


Sunday, October 27, 2013

"Don't Look Back"

"Don't look back" is almost like telling someone "don't look down" when they are way up high. No matter how much you know you should listen to that advice, it's so hard to heed it and fight the urge to do exactly what you were told NOT to do. It's  not like you really needed to be reminded, but hearing it almost makes it that much harder to resist when you're already fighting the temptation inside to begin with.

That's how I've been feeling. I know that my focus needs to be forward and upward. I don't want to look back on the past and get stuck there. My life is in the present and moving onward toward the future. I don't want to be brought down. I want to keep looking up and not focus on falling down, but trust that I am going to continue to be able to make my climb upwards. I know I'm in good hands and that God is providing for me.

I have expressed to several friends and family members (and even through this blog) how emotional the whole moving process has been for me. I'm sure I'm not the first or last to feel this way. Moving is a known stressor and it's taxing on anyone no matter how positive the transition is. I have been triggered in so many ways, and I'm struggling a lot inside. Even though I know that I'm at a very positive turning point in my life now, I'm still maybe in a state of shock about it all. Even though it's been a process, a lot of it feels like it happened so fast. This blog entry is being composed as I sit here in my very own house with my kids asleep in their own rooms. I'm still trying to take all that in!

The thing that I can't get out of my head are those phrases above. My Mom actually said it the other day when I had called her on Friday as I was remembering the 20th anniversary of Uncle Brett's passing. It's hard to believe that it's been two decades, but we've all had to move forward. Of course, we never forget him (and we still miss him) but we wouldn't be living if we stayed submersed in the past. That's what I had to be reminded of when I was telling Mom about my vast array of emotions lately. She uttered that simple phrase I mentioned, "Don't look back". For some reason, it just resonated with me in a fresh way and I remembered in the Bible what happened to Lot's wife when she looked back:

And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. - Genesis 19:25-26

It was pointed out in a sermon that I once heard that the heart of Lot's wife was still back in those cities. She was fleeing those wicked places and the Lord told them not to look back. She just couldn't help herself. Her heart wasn't focused on the good and safe place that she was headed; it was back in the places of evil and destruction. So, she ended up destroying herself.

This is something I have really had to be mindful of. I am in a new, safe, and good place; not just in regards to this new house, but in my life as well. I am headed in a fresh new direction. God is doing great things and it's wonderful! However, if I don't keep my heart in the present, I'm going to destroy myself the way Lot's wife did. I can't allow my heart and mind to live in the past. The past isn't all bad things or anything, but thinking too much on the people, things, and events that WERE is going to hinder me from what IS! There is a new plan and purpose now. That drawing board has been erased. It's clean and fresh and ready for new blueprints! It's time to focus on the new design!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I am learning so much as things in my life continue to change. It's one heck of a journey and I pray that as I go through all this, someone reading this might just be helped in their life too. We're all in this together! Keep your eyes forward and keep walking on the good path, my friends! Fix your eyes on Jesus...and don't look back! Be infused! God bless you!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Would Dr. Oz Recommend Shakeology?

Do any of you watch Dr. Oz? I've caught his show a few times. I think it's a fun and informative show. However, I think some of his advice just isn't realistic for a lot of people out there. I remember seeing one show where he was talking about different foods that prevent different diseases and reduce your risks for health issues. He said that women should have half a cup of red onions every day to prevent ovarian cancer. I don't know about you, but even if I had the time or desire to chop up onions every day, I don't think I would WANT to eat onions every day!

When we hear advice like that, it can sometimes be overwhelming. If you think about all the different foods and things you would have to eat in order to have your best shot at preventing disease and staying healthy, you would be buying TONS of food and preparing it constantly each day! Who has the time or money for that?!

That's why I'm so glad there's an easier way! With Shakeology, I can have all the things that Dr. Oz, or Katie Couric, promotes on their shows without having to spend a lot of time and money in order to get it! Just watch the video below and see how you can get $40 worth of nutrition into one glass (but pay $4 instead!). Four bucks or forty bucks...which would you rather pay? I think that's an easy answer! Just $4 a day for great health? You can't afford not to! Ditch that value meal at McD's and have a shake that tastes like a guilty pleasure but is oh-so-good for you! :)

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! Enjoy this short video below! I think you'll be surprised at just how much is crammed into Shakeology and all you would have to eat each day to get the same benefits! I hope Dr. Oz tries Shakeology someday! I don't know how he couldn't recommend this! I definitely think he would if he knew about it! Other doctors have (I've even shown it to a couple doctors I have seen and they said it was very healthy for me when I showed them the nutritional information). Be infused! God bless you!


Friday, October 25, 2013

An Eggcellent Sandwich!

You know I couldn't just talk about eggs yesterday without sharing a really cool recipe that features them! Here's a VERY delicious sandwich that I have made over and over again! I absolutely LOVE IT!! Not only are you getting your protein from the egg, but from the other ingredients as well! Actually, this really isn't a recipe. You simply just toast some bread, and then spread it with some low-fat cream cheese (yep, more protein right there!). Then, put your fried egg, some sliced avocado (healthy monounsaturated fats right there!), tomato, and green onion (though I usually omit the onion - personal preference). Oh, and don't forget the BACON!!! What's a sandwich without BACON?!! Yes, bacon has protein too!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! This is truly a delicious sandwich that goes GREAT with a bowl of soup on a chilly day! It's tasty! You'll love it; and the protein boost too! Be infused! God bless you and have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

EggcitingNews!!

When I came across this article about eggs, I was really curious! After all, we have all heard some conflicting reports on whether eggs are or aren't good for you. So, which is it?

According to what I read, eggs are a really good food choice! The most obvious reason, for most of us, would be because of the protein. Though, they contain a lot of other nutrients that your body needs as well. Choline is another helpful nutrient found in eggs that contributes to brain health and reduces inflammation. Did you know that? I didn't!

The other thing that I didn't know was that it's a GREAT weight-loss food! That certainly explains why I've been continuing to lose weight even though I have been taking a break from doing a regular exercise program right now. I had been wondering if eggs had anything to do with it because I have actually been eating eggs several times a week (we LOVE eggs and breakfast food in this house and tend to have toast and eggs frequently). It was a big "ah-ha!" moment when I read: "egg eaters experienced 65% greater weight loss, 83% greater decrease in waist circumference, and a greater improvement in energy levels..." Well, how about that?! :) Looks like I'm going to keep on eating eggs lol!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you are as eggcited about the information in the article as I was! That's the best part about this blog; finding stuff like this to share with you while learning something myself! This was one thing I was really happy to learn and, as I mentioned, I can definitely vouch for the fact that it's true! Be infused! God bless you!


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Give Yourself Ten Minutes!

Probably everyone's biggest workout excuse for why they don't exercise is that they don't have time. Yeah, it can be understandable if you don't have an hour or more to devote to some hard core exercising, but I think everyone can spare SOME amount of time! If you have just 25 minutes, you can get a LOT done and get great results with Focus T25 (I know I did!). Though, if you can't spare even 25 minutes, how about just TEN?! Yeah, that's right, TEN!!

I think we all have at LEAST ten minutes! Seriously, you could get up in the morning, do ten minutes, and then hit the shower and go to work. Or, you can do just ten minutes when you get home from work and then hit the shower and relax the rest of the night. That's doable, isn't it?

Check out this short video for the 10 minute trainer. It's a great program by Tony Horton; the maker of the P90X programs (and that special deal is STILL going on for P90X and P90X2, but only until the end of this month!!). It's PERFECT for anyone who really is crunched for time; especially stay-at-home Moms who have a hard time fitting in some "me time" (you can do this while the kids are napping!).

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Whether it's this program, or maybe something else, I hope you all can find at least a few minutes a day to start working out! The benefits are endless! You will feel better inside and out, boost your mood, and improve your health! You can do it! Be infused! God bless you!


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

After-Workout Snack Foods

You've just finished a workout. Great! Now, you're tired and probably a little hungry. So, what do you eat? What are the best ways to refuel?

Of course, I'm going to tell you that your BEST option is going to be the P90X Results and Recovery Formula. Why? Because it has the vitamins, protein, and nutrients that you need to rebound, recover, and rebuild your muscles! It's an EXCELLENT choice when it comes to after-workout refueling; particularly if you have been doing a really high intensity workout like P90X, P90X2, Insanity, Turbo Fire, or ChaLean Extreme. I have personally drank this stuff and not only does it taste good, but it really does help! I highly recommend it!

If you need some additional ideas, you can find them in this article. It suggest not eating something with too many calories or high fat (obviously) and advocates something with good nutritional value and lots of protein. Your muscles REALLY need the protein to rebuild and get stronger. So, some good options would be things like nuts, protein bars, milk, eggs, a smoothie, or other healthy foods.

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Remember to refuel properly after all your hard work so you can maximize your efforts! Be infused! God bless you!




Monday, October 21, 2013

Still Overcoming It All Through Christ!

When I first started this blog, I opened it with Mandisa's song "Overcomer" because with Christ, we TRULY can overcome anything! That's the heart behind my mission of this blog and being a Team Beachbody coach. I'm empowered through Christ and I want to help others be empowered too!

Originally, I shared her song/video which only had the music and lyrics. Now, she has a music video and it's PHENOMENAL! It is DEFINITELY worth sharing and I really hope you view it because it's very inspiring! I was pleasantly surprised to see several well-known people featured in the video. You'll see some clips of Robin Roberts, Scott Hamilton, and Gabrielle Giffords; all of which have overcome tough illness and injury and have been infused with God's strength! You've got to see this!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you are empowered and inspired by this song and these people! Know that you can do anything through the strength of God! He is with you! Be infused! God bless you!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

I Need Some Prayer

I stare at the screen and it's as empty as I feel right now. I struggle to find something to write because I feel like I have nothing in me. It's a rarity to feel like this. Who knows why it is. Maybe it's because the weather has been continuously cold and rainy. Everyone gets moody when it's so dismal outside. Maybe it's just the busyness of all that I've had going on. Maybe it's all the emotions that continue to bubble up inside.

It's probably all of the above. Whatever the case, I am battling with it quite a bit. I have been sitting here wondering how I can even write anything positive, inspiring, informative, etc. for today. After all, my whole purpose for writing this blog is so that I can help others. I've felt so frustrated and down that I just thought about posting something along the lines of "hey, I'm going to take a break from this...don't know when I'll be back." Though, it wouldn't do my readers (or me) any good to disappear. Writing helps me as much as I hope it helps all of you who read. It would only give me permission to sink further into this emotional hole.

Here I am...still writing about nothing and looking at a whole lot "blah" on my screen. I don't feel like I have anything to offer at the moment. I just haven't felt like myself today at all. I have even read over several of my previous Sunday blogs to try give me a boost. It helped a little bit, but I think I need more than that. I think I need to have some more quiet time today; to pray and cry things out. I think the impending move is just weighing so heavily on me. Even though this is a very good change, I am still struggling to process a lot of thoughts and feelings.

Grace and peace to you, my friends. I'm sorry I have nothing real to say tonight. Though, if there's one thing I know, it's that I always snap out of it. I will be ok. I just need to pray and to maybe even talk to a friend or something for a while. If you could spare a few prayers for me, I would appreciate it. I need some, please! Thanks! Be infused! God bless you!

The Magic Flower

Some say that there is no "fountain of youth". There is no way to stay young and healthy forever. It's true. Aging and deterioration is a natural part of life. But what if there was a way to slow it down and maximize your health? What if you really could feel healthier, more energetic, and younger...would you want to? Of course you would! 

That's why I am such an advocate of Shakeology. You have heard me share my story before. It's as true now as it ever was. In fact, maybe even more so because I actually haven't bought a fresh supply in a while. I have been putting all my time and money into my new house that I put off getting Shakeology like I should. I'll tell you what, I can definitely tell a difference!! My pain level has been very high and my energy level has been very low. Keeping up with everything has been such a chore! It's been much more tiring than usual. It's a horrible feeling because once you get used to feeling alert, strong, and full of vigor, it's a big downer when you feel weak and like you've gotten the life sucked out of you! I feel like mother Gothel from "Tangled" who always needed her magic flower fix in order to be young, beautiful, and full of life again lol! If there ever was a REAL magic flower or fountain of youth, Shakeology is DEFINITELY it! 

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you are having a great weekend! Sorry that this blog is late, but despite my pain and fatigue, I have still been working hard at getting my house ready! I'm worn out and exhausted and wishing that I hadn't decided to skimp on my Shakeology supply. I'm definitely going to have to fix that! I encourage you to try it (if you haven't already) or to go back to it if you stopped. Your body will thank you for it! Be infused! God bless you! 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Being Creative with Cottage Cheese

For today's "food Friday", I'm not featuring a specific recipe. Instead, I'm sharing this really cool article about the many different ways you can enjoy cottage cheese. Maybe that doesn't sound interesting to you (or maybe you're one of those that hates cottage cheese) but I thought it was a great article because other than maybe lasagna, I don't think many think that it's useful for much other than as a side dish. Whether you're eating it plain, or topping it with fruit, it's a GREAT way to get some protein!

For me, all of the things I already mentioned are ways that I like to eat my cottage cheese. There are also a couple other ways I like to eat it that some of you might think is gross but hey, don't knock it til you've tried it lol! One of my favorite ways to eat it is to put it in chicken noodle soup. It's something my grandparents showed me when I was a kid. Not only does it taste good, but it cools the soup down. Seriously, it's really good! Another way to eat it is a tip from someone I know who likes to put it in her spaghetti. I didn't know what to think about that at first, but I guess it's no different than putting it in lasagna (pasta is pasta). I tried it and it really does taste pretty good!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you have a great weekend! Be infused! God bless you!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Outdoor or Indoor Running?

Where are my walkers and runners at?! I know you're out there! There are lots of us that like to walk or run for exercise! It has a very liberating feeling to it (especially if you're running). It can even be fun to put on your iPod and listen to some awesome workout songs while you workout! Personally, I especially loved to run on the Greenway when I first started getting into running. In fact, I used to blog about it and titled those entries "God on the Greenway" (and yes, Shane, I am still meaning to compile it and publish it!).

Walking and running isn't just an outdoor activity, though. Many enjoy that form of exercise via treadmill. Either way, you're getting your heart rate up and burning some calories. However, is one better than the other? Which should you opt for? Outdoor or indoor walking/running?

In this article, you will find the list of pros and cons to both. I found it very insightful! It's hard to really say that one is definitely superior. There's so many factors to consider whether it be personal preference, weather, terrain, safety, etc. Regardless, I hope you enjoy the different perspectives that the article has to offer! I personally prefer being outside, but I would definitely opt for a treadmill if it was blazing hot or freezing cold outside! Even with allergies, I still like to be out in the fresh air and take it all in! :)

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you are having a great week! Be infused! God bless you!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Coming Soon...P90X3!!!

By now, you've heard me talk about Focus T25; the program where you get amazing results in just 25 minutes a day! It's a wonder that they haven't made more intense programs like this that only require a short time commitment per day!

Well, they must be on to something because VERY soon, they are coming out with P90X3 which is going to be a 30 minute per day program!! So, for all of you who love P90X and P90X2, I'm sure you'll LOVE this next installment of the intense P90X exercises! Only 30 minutes of intensity AND amazing results? Yeah! Absolutely!! Watch the video to get a sneak preview of what you're in for! I'll let you know when it's officially available! ;) And, while you're waiting, take advantage of of this month's offer on P90X and P90X 2!! You don't have very much time left to save BIG on these two programs!!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! Be infused! God bless you!!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Bible on the Go!

In Sunday's blog, I mentioned that I used a really neat free Bible app on my phone. So, I just wanted to take a moment and share a little more about this great tool because it's really important to take care of your spiritual health as it is your physical health!

This is a REALLY great app to get (if your phone supports it). Imagine having the whole Bible (and in several different translations) in the palm of your hand! You can even highlight and bookmark things too! Oh, and it doesn't stop there! They even provide numerous Bible reading plans and devotionals (and even remind you to read each day!). It's awesome! You can even LISTEN to the Bible being read! That's especially handy if you'd rather hear it than read it; especially if you want to play it in the car or while you're getting ready for work or something (I do that a lot!). ;) This app has so many different features! Download it and check it out!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope that you will get this app (if you're able). You'll love it! Then, there's no excuse not to always have your Bible with you and to read it/listen to it every day! Be infused! God bless you!

Monday, October 14, 2013

"I AM" Makes You Who You Are

While working on some furniture projects for my house, I was listening to my iPod on shuffle. Several songs came up that I hadn't listened to in a long time. One of them was a song by Ginny Owens called "I Am". In it, she sings about Moses, David, and Mary and how they marveled at the things He wanted them to do. God's vision for them seemed so much greater than what they could imagine, but as the chorus goes: "There's a bigger picture you can't see. You don't have to change the world, just trust in me..."

Sometimes, we really can't see beyond what's right in front of us. We don't know and can't fathom anything greater than what we already know to be true. We limit ourselves because we don't always know what we're capable of. More than that, we forget what GOD is capable of and that He already knows what He wants to accomplish in us and what the end result will be. I remember seeing a saying on a poster once that said: "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God." Think about it.

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Watch the video of the song "I am." It includes the lyrics, as well as some very beautiful pictures. Next time you get discouraged because you feel you can't accomplish your goals (or you feel like what God is asking you to do is too much) remember that He is "I Am" and that He can and will do GREAT things beyond what you can fathom! Be infused! God bless you!!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Do You Want to Be Blessed or Cursed?

When it comes to whether or not we want blessings or curses in our lives, the answer to that is really a no-brainer. I can't imagine anyone saying, "Yes, I want to be cursed!" No. We all want good things for ourselves, our family, and to have a wonderful life.

If this is true, WHY do we still choose to be cursed? I have been pondering that ever since the other day when I was reading Joyce Meyer's daily devotional on the WONDERFUL Bible app on my phone. She mentioned that Deuteronomy 28 describes a blessed life and a cursed life. The difference between the two is obedience to God. Read it and see the huge contrast between the two! The one who listens to the Lord is BEYOND blessed and life is good, prosperous, and abundant. Then, it goes on to say how difficult, disastrous, and calamity ridden a disobedient life is. It's a very bleak, distressing, and depressing picture! Seriously, take a moment and read it for yourself!

After I read it, it really got me to thinking about my own life. I had always tried so hard to please God and be a "good girl". The closer I walked with God, the better my life truly was and I can honestly say, those were always the happiest times. Any time I wandered astray, that's when I saw things in my life fall apart and bad things happen left and right. I've never saw it more plainly than in these last three years. I've always had my faith, but I'll admit that it was by a thread for a good while. I'll tell you what, I've never had a more heart breaking, miserable, lonely, depressing, and horrific time than when I was so lost and losing hope in the Lord. My worst moments of my life have been during these past three years when my faith was so weak. However, I have noticed that my life truly began to get better again due to the profound and simple choice I made on Easter Sunday of this year to rebuild my faith. That day, I was talking to the boyfriend I had at the time. Our relationship was very new; we were about two weeks into it (I think). Unfortunately, that was all the further it would go because he decided that he didn't want to renew his faith. I had told him that I was watching church online and asked if he was going anywhere or doing anything for Easter. That's when he told me he believed in God, yet wanted nothing to do with Him. It was a heartbreaking thing to hear; especially when that is not the kind of thing he had originally told me when we got together. He assured me that he wasn't going to change his mind on it, so I had to make the painful decision to let him go because I knew that being unequally yoked never works and that anyone who chooses anyone over God isn't worthy of Him (2 Corinthians 6:14, Matthew 10:37-38).

It was that choice that started changing my life all over again; this time, for the better. I started out by watching my brother's church online and committed to doing so each Sunday until I found a local church home. Later on, I started watching Blackhawk Ministries instead and was considering attending there (even though it's a 45 minute drive from where I am). I hadn't been to church in a long time and even though I tried a few churches, I hadn't found one in which I felt like it was "home". Yet, I knew it was important to find somewhere local, so I went to a few churches last summer. It's funny where you end up because the place where I finally felt like I belonged was the one that my parents' go to. I have went a couple times, but didn't feel like I connected (and mostly because I think I just didn't want to). However, I feel like God wanted me there because on the Sunday that I went back, it was due to the fact that I missed the service of another church. I was driving to it, but couldn't find a way to get there due to the road construction. It was like God was literally road blocking me lol. I didn't want to just give up and go home, so I figured I would surprise my parents and show up at theirs since it was about time for it to start anyways. Not only did I surprise them, but God surprised ME. The church was welcoming, the worship was full of heart (it always gets me teared up!), and the people there just have an attitude of servanthood (as evidenced by the testimonials they were having from the youth group that day; it really blessed me and melted my heart). The church is all about love, serving, prayer, ministry, and missions. It's so genuine and does EXACTLY the kind of things a church SHOULD do!

Over the next few weeks, I realized that I knew I belonged there. Not only that, but my kids love it there and they have a sign language interpreter in the service that my son loves to watch. I was also able to jump right in and start getting involved when I heard about the Steps of Faith Walk that they were going to have. I was very blessed to take part in it (she ended up getting well over 600 pairs of shoes to send to Africa!). I love getting connected with people that I already know, as well as getting to know new people. This church family makes it so easy! I am so grateful for them and look forward to getting to know them all more!

It is pretty obvious to me that Deuteronomy 28 is right on! I am seeing how blessed my life is again now that I have renewed my faith and started making choices for Him again. As you've read in my recent posts, He has blessed my children and I with a new house and so much more! I just can't even begin to tell you all the ways that he has provided for us and how wonderful my life is becoming more and more each day! I'm leaving the life full of curses and entering a life full of blessings when I choose Jesus!

In Joyce Meyer's devotional, she says: ""you can get free from one thing and go on to another thing and another thing and pretty soon, you'll start to realize that you have some real authority in Christ." I am definitely finding the bliss and freedom of working on all the things I need to work on in my life. I'm embracing each stage and step; learning, growing, and changing (even if it's uncomfortable, painful, or difficult). Joyce says, "Don't live your life without the thrill of growing and changing or you'll miss out on the good things God can do through you." Amen! She couldn't be more right about that! She also suggests to, "Take some time today to visualize the person you want to be and start pursuing God's freedom. Because one day at a time, you and God can do anything!" Amen to that too!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Take it from me, it's a lot better to be blessed than cursed; and it's within YOUR power to decide which of the two you want to be! Your heart, attitude, and willingness to lay down your pride and be submissive to the Lord is what will bring forth transformation, renewal, and blessings into your life! So, if your life is a mess, full of stress and turmoil, etc. pause for a moment to think about whether your choices have invited curses on yourself due to issues of disobedience in some way/area to God. Do you have an addiction? Do you fear/worry to much instead of surrendering control and trusting God? Do you hold onto hate and unforgiveness? What's the condition of your heart? Be honest with yourself and then bring it before Him and make those issues right. Make a choice to be a better you and have a better life through obedience to Christ. There truly is blessing and freedom in abiding in Him! Be infused! God bless you!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Sample the Flavors!

Since I've been so crunched for time lately, I don't have a lot to post today. I just decided to share a short video. It features the tropical strawberry Shakeology flavor (which is also vegan). Shakeology also comes in chocolate, greenberry, and vanilla flavors. Pretty sweet, huh? :) If you want to sample a few before you buy a full bag, don't forget about the sample packs that they just started selling!! Do yourself a favor and sample some of those flavors! :)

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Thank you for reading! I hope you are having a great weekend! Be infused! God bless you! :)

 

Friday, October 11, 2013

Halloween Olive & Cheese Cube Kebabs!

This recipe is so ridiculously simple and easy that it's really not much of a recipe at all! Though, it's probably something that would be a likable appetizer at your Halloween party this year! With everything one has to prepare for events like that, it's nice to be able to throw something together that doesn't take much effort (and it's low calorie too)! So, grab some skewers, cheese cubes, and black olives and you're done!! :)

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope you have a wonderful weekend! Be infused! God bless you!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

How to Fight Allergies

Allergies. Some of us are prone to them. So, how do we fight off those allergy symptoms? This article has a few great ideas! Though, one idea that you may not know about is something I have mentioned before that has helped with my own allergies. Shakeology. Yes, Shakeology! I don't know exactly WHY it helps, but it does! I battle itchy eyes a lot and I notice that when I drink Shakeology, I have that problem less frequently. Maybe it's because I'm healthier and my immune system is better and so I can resist allergies better. I don't know, but I love that it's one of the many perks to drinking it!! As if you needed another reason to try this stuff, but yeah...there you go!! :)

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Sorry that there isn't much here for you today, but time really got away from me! It's been difficult trying to get so much done every day with everything I got going on at the moment! But, with the help of God, I am getting through it! Be infused! God bless you!


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Rock-a-hula!

Normally, today would be the day where I talk about a Team Beachbody workout program. Though, I know that there are lots of options out there for workouts and that every now and then, it's worthwhile to mention a few other options. So, today, I am taking a break from the norm to feature something a little different and fun. It's something that maybe you were or weren't good at as a child and probably haven't considered as a form of exercise. Hula-hooping. Yes, hula-hooping!!

Several years ago, I was at a festival and at one of the booths, there was a gal selling weighted hula-hoops. I didn't think I could do it, but she coached me on how to get a rhythm. Also, it's a LOT easier when it's a weighted one (I don't know why). So, I bought one and I had a lot of fun with it! I still do it from time to time while listening to my music on my iPod (and what would hula hooping be if you didn't listen to Elvis' "Rock-a-hula" at least once?). It's really fun! I've actually gotten pretty good lol. Though, one minor note, take it easy if you're not used to it because they can kind of bruise your sides if you do too much of it at first.

If you're considering something fun to add to your workout routine, go to this site and check out their hula hoops! They come in lots of different colors and I even have a couple smaller ones for my arms (I'm a regular circus act lol). 

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Rock-a-hula the pounds away and have fun! Ah, what the heck, here's the song too!! Have a happy Wednesday!! The weekend is almost here! Be infused! God bless you! :) 


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Top 100 Workout Songs!

Music is something that I would venture to say all of us love. We listen to it at home, in the car, and on our electronic devices. Some of us even like to listen to it when we work out. Personally, I love the music mixes the trainers pick when I am working out to one of their Team Beachbody programs! The right beat can definitely make you feel motivated to move to the music!

I especially like to listen to music when I walk/run! That's why I was really intrigued by this article that asked people what their favorite running songs were. Click here to see the list of the top 100 songs (and see if any of your faves are on there!). For the most part, I agree with a lot of their picks (actually, the top nine of those songs ARE in my iPod lol). I have MANY of the songs on that 100 list; including lots of them that I think should have been ranked a lot higher. There is also a list of the top 90's songs too! I also have some that didn't make the list; like Mandisa's "Overcomer" or "Good Morning". I'm also a big fan of Jeremy Camp's music as well. Toby Mac, Kutless, and a lot of good Christian artists are positive, motivating, and uplifting. Helps keep your focus on God and how He's giving you the strength to get through your workouts too!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! Whatever your taste in music, I hope that you can find something that gets you movin' and motivated!! Be infused! God bless you!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Restored

Yesterday, I mentioned that I had been listening to a lot of Jeremy Camp (and painting in my "Restored" shirt that I got at his concert). It's not only the song that just seems to be the anthem of my heart right now, but the whole concept of it. In the song, Jeremy sings: "You have restored me from my feeble and broken soul." I keep thinking about God restoring me just as I'm restoring my own house to a better state. If I can take an old outdated house and make it like new again, how much MORE can God do that for me (and in me)?! If there's one thing that He's been showing me most in this process, it's that He is definitely restoring my feeble and broken soul. I feel renewed and like He has breathed new life into me. I can't even begin to put it all into words! All I know is that I am in such awe of Him and all He has done (and is doing).

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I hope that you watch this video and listen to the words. Let it sink in. Soak up the fact that God takes great joy in remolding you and restoring you! He can turn you into a new you; inside and out! Be infused! God bless you!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Preparing a Place

"It won't be long now," I keep thinking to myself. Every day, I survey the progress that has been made in my house and see the old interior continue to change and transform into something new and better. For me, it gives the verse about being a new creation fresh meaning (2 Corinthians 5:17). Watching the old, dingy, gross, and filthy things be made clean and new makes me think about what God does for me in the interior of my heart! It's amazing to think about and to witness!

I have mentioned in my blogs lately about how emotional things have been for me. I'm still trying hard to process it all and allow God to work in my heart bit by bit just like we've been working on the house. So many things have been stirring in me. There have been many moments where I have been overwhelmed to tears; both happy and sad ones. I am so humbled, blessed, and grateful to have this new house (as well as so much help and team effort from my parents in making it a home). I have also been wrestling with the sad tears and have cried here and there as I've been painting by myself and frequently listening to the music of Jeremy Camp as I do my work. His music has always been so heartfelt, genuine, and full of praise and gratitude towards God. I also want to have that same humble heart that's fixed on God; a God who loves and heals me of my brokenness. I even wear the shirt I got when I first saw him in concert in 2005 when I was pregnant with my daughter. It says "Restored" on the front of it. To me, it couldn't be a more appropriate shirt to wear when I'm painting because not only is the house being restored and made new, but so is my heart and my life!

These past couple days, I haven't been able to shake Jesus' words from my mind from John 14:1-4:

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. 

Those verses are resonating with me more than ever before! This house, that God so graciously provided, is for my children and I. At this moment, I am preparing this place for us. We will be together; living and thriving in our new home. We also invite the Lord to be with us; giving back to Him what He has given to us. This house will become our home together and I pray it will be abounding in the fruit of His Spirit as we invite and welcome His presence into our home and our hearts. Where we are, may He be also! Always!

I can only imagine the place He is preparing for every one of us! I think about all the work that my family and I are doing on this house and just how much is being put into it. Though, even as we do our best, there are going to be mistakes and imperfections. Nothing usually ever looks exactly right. You end up finding flaws and living with the "it'll be ok for now" type things until you can put more time and money into something later. Yet, it's alright! Our earthly homes don't have to be perfect (and they aren't/won't ever be). This home, even as homey as it's becoming, is still not my true "home". My real home is in heaven; with Jesus in the PERFECT place that He is preparing for me. I kind of laugh to think of Him constructing a place, painting rooms, and doing home improvement work. Heck, he could just say the word and things would be completed without him ever having to lift a paint brush or power tool! But, I'm sure that it's not anything like that at all. He's not in heaven doing heavy construction. I don't think He meant things quite like that. I'm not sure exactly how or what He's preparing, but I believe that He's just waiting for God to say "Ok, it's time! Go and get them!" It's like when you are preparing to receive guests into your home. You prepare for an event (like the house warming party I will most certainly have) and you receive your guests at the proper time; when everything is ready. Right now, I don't know the day or hour of my own house warming party, but I know the day is close because my house is becoming more and more ready as it gets completed. That's just like how these end times are. Prophecies are being fulfilled and soon, everything will be completed. Then, the day and hour will come and it will be time to go home!!

I am just so awed and amazed by all these thoughts! It not only thrills me, but comforts me and helps me to remember that no matter what, my home is with Jesus and I'm never alone. I just keep thinking about the words to Jeremy Camp's song "Right Here": "Everywhere I go I know you're not far away. You're right here. You're right here." I feel like He's always saying that to me, "Melissa, I'm right here." He is. He's always right here with me. No matter what. I am SO GRATEFUL for that!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! Watch and listen to "Right Here" (right now lol) and let it speak to you. Jesus is ALWAYS right there with you. He's not just in heaven preparing that place for you, He IS with you. We don't have to feel alone or like He's far away from us. He never leaves us and wants us to be with Him. We need to invite Him to be with us; to be at home in our hearts. Nothing feels more like home than when you've made Him at home in your life! Be infused! God bless you!!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Optimum Health is Waiting!

Every day, I look forward to drinking Shakeology. It not only tastes good, but it's superior nutrition. It's such good fuel for my body! I especially love to drink it right after my workout because what better way to recover from a tough workout than by putting such great nutrition into your body to rebuild?!

Watch this short video, featuring Tony Horton, as he mixes up some Shakeology. It's so simple! Shakeology, ice, water (or my preference, almond milk), etc. and blend to perfection! It's so delicious!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! If you haven't already tried Shakeology, what are you waiting for?! Optimum health is waiting! As I mentioned last week, it's never been easier to sample the best tasting stuff on earth! Order a sample pack and see for yourself! Be infused! God bless you!


Friday, October 4, 2013

Skinny Spinach Dip!

Popeye is probably everyone's first thought when they see or think of spinach. It's a really good veggie that's supposed to make you strong, right? Though, I don't know about you, but I've never been a huge fan of it. However, when it comes to appetizers like this, I am more inclined to eat it!

I saw this recipe and thought it would be a great one to share! It uses some really great ingredient substitutions and reviewers say that it tastes great! I don't know when or if I'll make it for sure, but I know there are a lot of spinach dip fans out there, so I thought I would share it!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! I hope you have a wonderful weekend! Be infused! God bless you!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Quality Fuel

Calories. We hear about them all the time. Though, do most of us even know much about what they really are? This article explains some basic concepts about calories; including the fact that a calorie is "a unit of heat energy." That heat energy is "what really fuels our body just the same way that gasoline is what fuels your car's energy."

Like a car, you are going to be at your peak performance when you are putting the best fuel possible into yourself. Also, you function better with a full tank rather than running on empty all the time. Quantity AND quality matters!! Therefore, consider the food calories that are going into your body. Keep things balanced. Don't overeat, but don't under-eat either. Spread out your calories throughout the day into three decent meals and a couple snacks. Make sure the foods you choose have calories that are worthwhile. Your body can do a lot more with food calories and nutrients from fruits and veggies than it can from a pop tart!

Grace and peace to you, my friends! I know it's hard to eat well ALL the time, but do the best you can to fuel yourself as best as possible! At the very least, drink Shakeology each day to ensure that you are getting more of what you should and craving less of what you shouldn't! Your body is a hard-working machine; treat it accordingly! Remember, you are what you eat! Work hard for your body and it will work hard for you! Be infused! God bless you!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

P90X-TREME DEAL!!

Whoa! That's all I have to say! When I read that October's challenge pack deal was going to be P90X AND P90X2, I thought it was great! Though, the BEST part is that it really is a HUGE deal!! When it comes to challenge packs (or even the program in general) it's one of the pricier ones they have. It's also one of the most highly effective and widely known programs as well (even Sheryl Crow and P!nk have done the program). So, to be able to get this program PLUS Shakeology in a challenge pack is a GREAT deal...but to slash NINETY BUCKS off the price? That is OUTSTANDING!!!! If you've always wanted to do P90X, or you want to do P90X2, the time is NOW to get it!! After October, this deal will be GONE!! Seriously, people, THIS is the deal to jump on!! It's hard telling when they will discount it like THIS again!!

Below, you will find two videos about each of the programs (just to give you an idea of what you're in for and the kind of deal you're getting!). I can't stress this enough! Getting this program PLUS Shakeology all in one bundle at THIS price is a phenomenal steal of a deal! Don't wait until the last minute to get it!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! I hope you take advantage of this opportunity! This deal is going on all month, but don't wait until it's too late! Get fit and fabulous! Be infused! God bless you!!


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Challenge of Rest

We all know that there's great benefits to working out. Though, do we ever stop to consider that working out too much (or too hard) could be hurting our efforts? That's the subject of this article. It IS possible to overdo it on the exercise and in doing so, sabotage your efforts.

This article was a great reminder to me because, as you all know, I've been working out a lot harder than normal. Not only am I finishing up Focus T25 Gamma, but I've been doing a lot of work on my new house. I still have a lot of painting to do; plus there will be all that work of moving things into the house as well. Needless to say, I'm REALLY tired and sore!

I'm pushing forward with everything that I have to do, but I have already decided that once I finish this last week of Gamma, I'm going to take a break from doing any other programs until I get settled into my new home. More than likely, I'll just do some moderate walking and stretch workouts for a while since I'm already going to be doing a lot of moving and lifting otherwise. Though, I must say, I believe that Focus T25 has built up a LOT of endurance in me! I don't think I would have been able to do a lot of what I've been doing if I hadn't been doing this beforehand! In fact, I bought a coffee table at an antique store last Saturday (which has a heavy granite inset in the middle). A guy at the store carried it out for me and told me that the granite (that pops right out) was really heavy and that I should have help with it when I got home (heck, he was struggling with it, it seemed). So, I anticipated asking my Dad to help me carry it once I was ready to get it out. However, when I picked it up, I was like "I don't know what he's talking about. It really isn't that bad." I was pleasantly surprised, and impressed, with myself because I know it's because of the strength training I've been doing in Gamma that helped me have what it took to lift that granite. I felt super strong! :)

I am confident that I am both stronger and more able to get through what I need to get done. But, I also know that I need to rest, rebuild, and recuperate or I will burn out completely. We all need to be proud of what we have accomplished (and continue to challenger ourselves) but we also need to accept the challenge of rest as well. It's a component that we needn't overlook if we expect to succeed in the long run!!

Grace and peace to you, my friends!! I hope that you're all pressing forward in all that you're doing; remembering to allow God to infuse you with His peace and rest in addition to His strength too! Be infused! God bless you!!