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I feel really good waking up this morning. My entire body is sore (a good sore from working out), but that soreness is weaning off a little now that I’m up and moving. I’ve been to the gym 3 days in a row and I’m back to strength training. I did weights yesterday in the gym, but I do weights in the evening in my living room too while I watch TV. This keeps me from snacking so it’s an added plus.

I cannot even describe how GREAT it feels to be back into a routine. I was hesitant to get back to it once my gym time starting slipping. I knew it was going to be a challenge to get back to the pace I was at, but now I feel like I’m in a grove and it’s all coming together. My food is also back on track. I’m not eating junk anymore so I feel rejuvenated. Those cheat foods just aren’t worth it after going to the gym.

I’m trying not to weigh myself everyday. I usually do, but I think I’m going to start weighing in once a week. The number and the surprise will be bigger by weighing in once a week.  There is also added excitement for weigh in day compared to the expectancy to lose when you weigh every day.

I’m changing my foods by adding in things I wouldn’t usually eat. For example, I watched my sister make a veggie omelette on Sunday and I was inspired. It looked awesome. So I made one yesterday (not so pretty) and I had another for breakfast this morning that I’m including a picture of because visually it was an improvement. The entire plate is 250 calories. Visually this is a lot of food, but the calories are still low. What you see below includes:

1 whole egg, 6 tbsp of liquid egg whites, ¼ cup diced tomato, 1/8 cup of hearty sausage crumbles, a pinch of cheese, and spinach. On the side is a half a banana and tomato that fell out of the omelette when I flipped it.

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Now I’m not one to usually care for spinach – this is totally what I’m referring to when I say I’m adding things I usually wouldn’t eat. It was surprisingly good though. With the spinach mixed in I didn’t even taste it. So now I’m trying to look into other foods I can hide spinach in.

I want to make food fun so I’ve been playing on Pinterest more and more this week. I’m adding things I find to my Facebook page, Operation Skinny & Fit. My sister who is obsessed with Pinterest on all levels, is adding a lot of fitness tips. If you haven’t look at our Facebook page you should! 🙂 I would post those tips here, but it’s just quicker on FB. I like this page for more wordy/journal purposes.

Speaking of journal purposes, on a note unrelated to health or weight loss, what happened in Connecticut on Friday is beyond words. I wanted to write about it after it happened because I find when I write my thoughts out I’m able to process them better, and I was a mess. That shooting just really left me feeling sucker punched. Instead of writing it out I ended up spending that time with my daughter instead. I could not stop hugging her and I’m sure many of us felt that way. I decided to write about it today because I still can’t stop thinking about it and I feel I need to get it out.

I have a 3 year old daughter. As for any parent, she is my entire world. Every time I watched the news after the shooting, I couldn’t help but see her beautiful face and feel the unimaginable turmoil those parents must have felt not knowing if their child was alive when they returned to the school where their children were just dropped off.

Grudgingly over the last few months I’ve been looking into preschools for my daughter and already that scared me.  I was already having issues with Brooke going to school – attachment issues. I work from home so I’ve spent almost every day of her life with her. Now I’m supposed to trust a stranger to care for her in a place that may or may not be safe anymore. I had those issues before the Connecticut shooting. Now I’m just at a loss.

I cried Friday when I watched everything unfold on TV. I cry still with the stories coming out of those that were lost and the story of those children that survived. I don’t know that I cried for the other shootings. I was sad, yes. Angry, yes. Shocked, confused over how anybody could commit such acts, definitely yes. I don’t know that I cried. Columbine, Virginia Tech, mall shootings, theater shootings, and every other school where a shooting occurred. All are horrible, senseless tragedies. So I asked myself what is so different from the other shootings that I would cry now. In this case, with the children being so young, I cried because they didn’t even have a chance. An older child may feel the instinct to run. Some of those children did run Friday and thank God for that. My child is shy. She will stand by my side and hold my hand until I urge her to move. If she were in that classroom Friday she would not have run. That scares the life out of me.

As a parent, if anything ever happened to Brooke I would want to know every detail. Was it quick? Did she suffer? Did she ask for me? Could I have stopped it? Could I have prevented it? Was she scared? Was she alone? To know those parents in Conneticut may be asking that, and just imagining the terror those children must have felt, to hear the examiner say that bodies were shot several times – little, precious, fragile bodies of our children full of bullets – how do you forget that image?

Being a parent is the hardest thing in the world. Don’t get me wrong. I love my job as a parent. I cherish every moment I have and it is a HUGE blessing to be Brooke’s mother. It is a gift that I get to watch every single day seeing her grow. Despite that, it is the hardest job. From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I was so worried about doing something wrong. It is a non-stop worry just making sure I’m doing everything I can as a mother to get her into this world safely. Once that happens it is a huge relief, until you realize now you have to keep her safe in a scary world. As if you don’t have enough to worry about with the normal parental fears of screwing your child up yourself and making sure they are smart, provided for, happy, loving, healthy (and a long list of etc.). Then you throw in the mind stopping fear of child molesters, kidnappers, bullies, and now getting shot at school, which should be the second safest place to home.

Beyond the loss I feel for the parents of those lost children, the families of the incredibly brave teachers, the survivors, the families of those that survived, and of course those that died and the life they could have had being cut so short, I just feel an emptiness for us as a nation. I wonder where we go from here. Will it get worse or better, and if it gets worse, how does it get more worse than children being shot? I hope that now, finally, after such a horrible crime of children being massacred, I hope we can figure out how to stop this from happening again. There have been so many tragedies. Did this extreme shooting of children, just God, such young children, be what we needed to wake us up? I hope so. Making sure this doesn’t happen again is the only good that can come out of this and I pray to God that it happens. I fear this will become another forgotten tragedy spoken of in passing at the next shooting. People say now that it won’t be, but already life goes on. Fresh news, more murders. I pray that good comes of this and we make necessary changes to prevent this from happening ever again.

I watched a video of Mike Huckabee answering the question many may have asked, “Where was God?” If you have a few moments today I think this video is worth watching. You can click here and if that doesn’t work try this link: http://video.foxnews.com/v/2038135300001/huckabee-where-was-god/.

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