health

Write 31 Days 2015

 
Hi Friends! Welcome.
Take a slow, deep breath.
Count to 4 as you inhale.
Hold all that breath in your lungs as you count to 4 again.
Then, when you are ready, breathe out slowly and fully.
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Welcome to this space. It is as much yours as it is mine. May it be a rest when you need it + a kick in the butt when you need that too. All these tiny pixels, created by fingers on keys, mean something to me + I hope they mean something in your life too.

We will talk about bodies + souls here. We will talk about love + making it. I am a pastor, speaker, writer, and a sex educator.
So, now that I’ve made every possible person slightly uncomfortable, let’s see what good we can do in this uncharted territory. Please proceed wisely and know your own boundaries. love, Nicole
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Body full of Soul is a series inspired by the annual Write 31 Days venture.
Everything is Connected. We are whole beings and it matters what you do with your body and how you think about your body.
Let’s set aside a little time each day in October to give attention to the miracle of being human.  We are made of stardust and the breath of God, after all.
 

All of the essays + pictures + sensual delights
will line up here for your attention.
 
ESSAYS + GOODNESS

C.S. Lewis Said Something – on having and being

Touch Me, Please, So You Can Touch Me – on angels and animals

Imagination and Kissing – Anais Nin and me

Good Night’s Sleep – relaxing

Pique Your Curiosity – on Parker Palmer and the wildness of your soul

Prayer for Love – seeing with new eyes and closeness of heart

Life is a Freakin Miracle – presence and a Bible reading just for you

Get […]

Take Care of You

It’s time to TAKE CARE OF YOU.
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When I was training for my half marathon (that phrase still makes me laugh, it still seems preposterous, but I did it)….
When I was training for my half marathon, I ate whatever I wanted.  I needed fuel! If I was hungry after a run and wanted In n Out, no problem!  If it was 10p and I was starving, absolutely I could eat some delicious Honey Bunches of Oats (with almonds!).
Then, I ran the race in December!! It was amazing. I’ll tell you all about it soon.
And I just kept on eating in the days after the race too. Want pizza for dinner? Right on! Let’s do it.  It’s almost Christmas; let’s have pie!
Now, it’s been a full month AFTER the race and it’s time to get my act together. My body needs some anti-running exercise. My body needs some lighter food. My skin needs some winter care.  I’ve gotten so lazy after the exertion of the race that I don’t even like brushing my teeth.

Can you relate? You probably didn’t run a half-marathon. (Why would a sane person do that?)  But, you probably have some kind of whole food / walk everyday / drink a smoothie for breakfast / P90x / brush your teeth 2x’s a day ….. kind of goal for this month. Let’s do it together.
To quote one of my favorite movie lines ever; it’s time to “TAKE CARE OF YOU!”
It doesn’t have to be anything big. Small things can change your life.  I will bring you my favorite food, self-care tips and products, and exercise plans both here on the blog and on my Pinterest Boards.  Bring me yours too!
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Today’s Take Care of You […]

By |January 10th, 2014|Healthy You|2 Comments|

I’m Betting On Myself

That’s right, I’m betting on myself.
Because sometimes when you say, “For you, I will,” the you is actually YOU.

In the month of June, I will be part of something that made me laugh and then, as I let it marinate in my brain… well, it inspired me! (kinda like this /\ /\ picture! /\ /\ )

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Do you ever need a push sometimes? Do you ever bribe yourself to workout or finish an assignment? What prize  motivates you?

This time, I am betting actual cash on myself.

I made a little wager that I could lose 4% of my weight in the month of June. It’s a good thing, I promise!

It’s part of a motivation challenge on Casey Ho’s blog-  www.blogilates.com

Casey is a woman dedicated to health and happiness in herself AND others. She is silly and energetic and smart and strong. So, when she started this Diet Bet I wanted in.

(My link is: http://bit.ly/10YD0P4 and http://www.dietbet.com/player-profile/58323)

Already there are over 3,000 people in the mix. Everyone who loses 4% or more wins their $25 back and then we split any money left over if other people don’t reach their minimum goal.

Listen, it could be easy to criticize this idea if you wanted to; I get it.  Shallow? Maybe. Not the point of life? Of course.  For me though, putting a little money on the line for my health … I need this.
Don’t you need a push sometimes? Do you ever bribe yourself to workout or finish an assignment?
What’s your most motivating prize?
Hey, maybe next time, if any of you need a loan that you’d only have to pay back if I reach a new goal, let me know!! I could be like a bank with a […]

By |June 2nd, 2013|Healthy You|3 Comments|

What are you hungry for?

Hi Friends!

 

So I started asking myself, “What do I want in life?”

The answer that came back immediately …

“Coffee, please.”

“Maybe also a chocolate chip cookie and a long nap too.”

 

On one hand, that’s lovely and simple.

On the other hand…  That’s all I want out of LIFE?  Really? That’s it?! That’s just kinda sad.

That’s what I define as an attainable wish.

 
Somewhere in me is a quiet, desperate whisper for more.
 

There’s got to be more to life than the wish for a few sensory comforts, right?  Something real, big, energizing.

The little whisper for real meaning and purpose is so, so quiet most of the time and the longing for comfort and pleasure is oh, so loud: I want it!  I want it!  I want chocolate!  I want a nap!  I want quiet and time to myself!  I want pizza and diet coke and cookies and warm donuts and a margarita (together or separate – I’ll take ’em how I can get ’em)!

If I am not careful to pay attention to my true desires, i will

live from numbing agent to numbing agent trying to escape the boredom, sadness, isolation or frustration  – and when I am not doing that I am using those same things numbers to celebrate or care for myself.

I’ve been asking myself those hard questions you have to ask, if you ever want to change. What do I actually really want?
“What’s the thing behind the thing?” – Rob Bell
I want to feel good. Do you know what feels good?  To eat and drink until you are so full you just need to sleep. aaahhh!  You can then curl up and take a nap or watch a wonderfully mindless TV show and forget everything but that […]

Let’s Celebrate Life

When you go to Disneyland, you can ask for a big button to wear all day. It will say “It’s My Birthday!” or “Let’s Celebrate!”  And you can fill in your name underneath or write what you are celebrating: “Anniversary” or “Graduation”. Then everyone who works at Disneyland will see your button and comment and welcome you.

“Happy Birthday, Princess!”

“Happy Anniversary!”

We live near Disneyland and go often.  The other day my little girls and I were walking through the huge plaza full of people as another woman walking towards us caught my eye.  She wore a “Let’s Celebrate” pin, crew-neck t-shirt, big white sneakers and high-waisted shorts;  Typical, comfy, I’m on vacation from rural (fill in a state) attire.  I always think about the people at Disneyland as they walk past us. Is this their first time?  Are they spending 3 years’ savings to make these memories with their families at Disneyland?  What’s her story?

Then, as this particular woman moved nearer to us, I looked closely at her button and saw that it said “Let’s Celebrate… LIFE.” Instantly, all the details I had subconsciously noticed about her came into focus:  Comfy clothes. Thin, short, newly-grown-in gray hair. Pale and slightly puffy face…  New cancer survivor. Laughing with her friends. Walking through the Disneyland plaza. Celebrating LIFE.  Smiling at me as she passed.  She’s on a LIFE.

 

Life.  I want to be on a LIFE. Let’s celebrate… LIFE.

“Happy LIFE, Princess!”

 

So, step one of going on a LIFE – what that woman in big, white sneakers and high-waisted shorts wore all over her gorgeous face: Gratitude. For Everything. For Life Itself.

(pause.)

Gratitude.  It only happens in this exact moment.

 

What makes a LIFE? How does a person permanently change, ditch […]

Stop the DIE-ette (diet) and Go on a Life

Diet. Die.

“This diet makes me want to die.” “I’d rather live fat and happy than die skinny and miserable.”

Have you ever heard someone say something similar?
DIE ette: A little death. I am on a diet… I am dying a little bit every minute I am on this DIE-ette.
A diet used to simply be what someone or something ate regularly. A lizard eats a diet of crickets.  A koala eats a diet of eucalyptus.   Mythological super models eat a diet of champagne and cotton balls. I eat a diet of coffee, chocolate covered almonds, and pizza interspersed with meals of kale and chia seeds. (balance, People, balance.)  This kind of diet is FACT. It’s what I actually eat.

Then, there’s the DIE-ette. The one that kills your soul and sometimes your body a little each day.  This is the strict, short-term list of rules that You or Slimquick or the 4 Hour Somebody or Fruitarians United have decided you should eat.

I am suffocating under the conflicting Die-ettes I should be on. I don’t want to be on a DIE-ette. I want to be on a LIFE.

I WANT TO BE ON A LIFE.  Hear me?!

Do you want to be on a life too?

People go on diets together all the time. Let’s go on a Life together. We will start tomorrow. But for real this time.

By |January 30th, 2013|Healthy You|0 Comments|

Swag n Stuff – Best Shape of My Life

I’m in the best shape of my life as I write this to you. I am glistening with sweat – my abs hard and my hair somehow still voluminous and sea-breeze blown.  I’m enjoying eating a kale, chia seed salad and drinking a room-temperature glass of lemon water.
…Not really. Not ever. That’s not true.

I’ve been better than I am today, though… God knows. He knows. I’ve. Been. Better.

When I was in the best shape of my life, I actually got there after a 6 week diet and exercise bootcamp.

My abs have never actually been what other people would call “hard” or “fit” but I did have an actual waist. I was smaller at my belly button than at my boobs. It happened.

Funny thing. I thought I was changing for good… Forever. I thought I would never be the same after that bootcamp — I gave it a big push and worked hard.

I was proud. I had swag. Confidence. My hair bounced like you wish yours did.

New, baby, beginning habits were formed. I studied and gained knowledge. I set goals. I learned Right from Wrong (the capital letter kind of right and wrong).

Then, slowly, I made exceptions and had set backs… temptations… and celebrations… Consolations.

And now, I am my old, normal self again. The one who is a slave. A slave to destructive habits of comfort, indulgence, addiction, and doughy pizza. (oh, pizza… you abuse me and I like it)

Part of me still knows eating and laying around don’t lead to a healthy, vibrant life … but that part can’t convince the rest of the parts to get it together again.

Here’s why… That part knows it’s a forever decision this time. That big push.. Bootcamp… […]

By |January 31st, 2012|Healthy You|0 Comments|