Good friends and laughter can only describe the evening I had yesterday. I am thankful for my friends, they mean the world to me. The afternoon started around 2:30. The five of us met at a friend's house. We left around 3:00 for afternoon Christmas tea in Atlanta. My friend has a van that seated us all comforatbly. Only one out of six of us had gone to afternoon tea before, so it was a new experience for all of us. We are a low maintence group of women so tea at the Four Seasons was such a treat. The restaurant in the hotel is Park 75. It was so elegant and beautiful. Absolutely gorgeous! They brought out boxes that held little bottles of the sample of tea for us. We loved the scent of each one. I chose masala black chai tea. WOW! It was fantastic! One of my friends and I got the vegetarian tea sandwiches, which included pasteries, chocolate truffles, cucumber tea sandwiches, tomatoes with hummus, raspberry rolls. Absolutely delicious! We had a gift exchange. The atmosphere, ambiance, was so great. There was a wedding going on, we got to see the bride briefly walk from one room to another accompanied by the groom, and someone from the wedding party. All elegantly dressed, the other woman with a pillbox hat cocked to one side of her head. There was another woman with her miniature dogs with their designer leopard print carriers out front. Valet brought the van around and we got in. We drove down Peachtree. I was thinking about fifty years ago to the night was the premiere of Gone With the Wind; that very street lined with cars, paprazzi, a grand time for some brilliant actors. We passed the High Museum, Savannah College of Art and Design, Atlanta Campus, (SCAD) many well known restaurants. The mansions of Peachtree were lit in all their beauty of Christmas lights. We rode through many streets of Atlanta, then made our was to West Paces Ferry Road where we looked in awe at the Governor's mansion. Very beautifully decorated. I cherish the memories made of last night, the laughter, and the connection to good friends!
I've set my mind and made a decision about my health. As of today I'm going to adopt a vegan lifestyle and excerise daily. I do not, let me say that again, I do not like to exerise at all. I do like to hike and walk at the park. I've thought of eating vegan before and found the idea daunting, but being a vegetarian already becoming vegan will be easy. It's all a mind set. So I've changed my mind to thinking of 100% vegan lifestyle as easy and excerising is something I enjoy. All of my life I've struggled with my weight, I'm a size 14, so I've always considered myself chubby, not obese, but by Doctor's standards I am obese. Within the last few days I've had several incidence that have called to me. I know that these are signs, my intuition telling me to make lifestyle changes. I teach First Grade and love it. On Friday the classes had Grinch day. The students were able to wear green shirts, Santa hats, make Grinch masks to wear. My class watched the Grinch movie while eating pickles, green candy canes, green mints, green gum balls. There were Grinch T-Shirts at Wal-Mart that I looked at. All of these shirts were in junior sizes, therefore I didn't get a shirt for Grinch day, but wore a green fleece shirt, which was cute. Yesterday I was at the mall and tried on a few dressy shirts because I was looking for one to wear to a Christmas tea next Saturday. I found a beautiful red shirt at Macys with red sequence on it that I can wear with black pants and look appropriate for the tea. I did try on four of five shirts that were too tight on me. I made a choice for this to not spoil my day, the shopping trip, but also made a determined decision in my mind that I would get healthy by releasing weight.
This morning I've stretched, worked out for forty minutes, stretched again. I did four reps of twenty with hand weights, fifteen minute cardio dance work out, stretched with a pilates stretching band, and 500 crunches. This may seem a bit extreme, but when I make my mind up to do something, I do it whole heartedly. I ate a veggie burger with lettuce, tomatoes, veggie cheese, no bread, just the veggie pattie with toppings, and a side of broccoli. I've had 24 oz of water today. This evening I will be making smoothies for the week. I want to have a smoothie each morning for breakfast. The best way to do this is if I make them Sunday evening. I'll have five 8 oz. cups that I'll freeze the smoothie in and take out the night before, putting in the fridge for it to be ready to drink the next morning. It won't take much to veganize my life, because I was already pretty much there. I do have a four pack of Frappuccino Mocha from Starbucks that I'll give to one of my friends that I work with. On my to do list is to pack the mocha up and take to her tomorrow. I will not struggle with my weight any longer. I'm on a path to healthy living where food does not control me. If I give myself only healthy choices then there's only one option and it'll be easy.
I love Maya Angelou! This quote by Maya Angelou is so profound and wise:
"In the sweet shadow of Thanksgiving I am giving forgiveness to everyone I thought had ill treated me. I want to enter the Christmas month with a clean slate. I want to think that everyone I know can enter the last month of this year free of any ill will between us. Let us all go into December 2012 free, giving and expecting the good thing."
Last night, I liked this quote so much that I posted it on Facebook. I had a friend who made the comment that it was a nice quote, but sometimes the hurt someone has inflicted onto you is too great, hard to move past. I agree that it can be difficult to forgive and we hold onto it. So my response to her on Facebook was I agreed and that it takes time. I didn't want to seem "preachy" but wanted to say to heal does take time, but once you realize that holding onto the grudge and not forgiving only hurts yourself, then you let it go. I believe the other person who has done the hurting has moved on, its finished, the story has ended for them. We are so wrapped up in our hurt, and accusing, that we literally hold onto it in our bodies. This brings bigger health issues to us. Just release, let go, talk to God, forgive, heal. You, your health, your mind, your body, your soul will be better for it.
So I let go, forgive, release, and enter the Christmas month with a clean slate. Life is good, I feel the Magic of the Season!
When reading about the writing process people talk about word choice, using the perfect words. I'm not a verbage snob. For me, the purpose of writing is the feeling, motivation, and the purging behind a piece that makes it profound. Writing can be the healing process behind many of life's ups and downs. I acknowledge there should be a balance between writing from feeling and focusing on word choice. I have a method, a process in my madness when I write. First, I write for feeling, it's my spark writing where all the juicy images emerge. Then, I re read, edit, and re write using more effective, more interesting, and a variety of words that helps the fluidity of the story. The main purpose of writing is the enjoyment of the process and I do love writing! It provides me with an outlet to put my life to paper in a meaningful, enriching way.