Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Chocolate Cake and Gluttony

Let me just tell you that the cake I made over the weekend was good. Really, really good! We'll talk about my gluttony in a minute, but here's the recipe for all of you who are steering clear of dairy and want some chocolate cake. The name is disgusting, but try the cake....

Chocolate Oil Cake

2 cups white sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups water
1 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* Optional: I added semi-sweet chocolate chips to the batter and then as soon as it came out of the oven, I broke chunks of semi-sweet baking chocolate over the top of the cake. After melting, I smeared the baking chunks around. mmmmmmmmmmmm.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a large bowl, mix sugar, flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa.
Add water, vegetable oil, vinegar, and vanilla. Beat by hand until smooth.
Pour into a 9x13 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean.

Ok, now for the gluttony. I'm not on Nutrisystem anymore, but I know how to count calories and watch what I eat. I've still been losing a bit and am very happy about where I am health-wise. Until this weekend. I ate chocolate cake every meal and because I was having so many calories, I skimped on other good foods. The result was ... Oh, wait, I forgot to tell you that I did a similar thing last weekend, too, so this is two weekends of gluttony to talk about. So, where was I? Oh yeah, the result of this cake eating-counting calories-gluttony madness is that I felt lethargic by the end of the weekend and to top it off, I started having Hyper episodes from all the chocolate I consumed! Last night I started having episodes and it was like I was caught in a meat grinder. I couldn't get away from one episode before I got slammed with another one. As I lay there in bed going over my last 36 hours of activities and food to try to figure out where these episodes were coming from, I thought, "Oh, good grief! The chocolate!!"
Today I have been a good girl and have been drinking lots of water and am sufficiently throttled for my stupidity. It was a great way for God to get my attention though. I'll never be sad that I ate that cake, but I am sad that I chose legalism over grace. There is nothing wrong with cake or counting calories, but when I chose selfishness and gluttony over living in grace ... that was my downfall. Counting calories is accountability for me. It helps me keep track of where I've been and where I am going each day in my eating. My mistake over the weekend was choosing myself first and then squeezing in the necessities later. When I think of the panorama of life and how harmful these choices are that I made, I shake my head. The great thing is that I can still choose to live and walk in grace. I can repent of my selfishness and gluttony and go back to great living right now. I'm so glad I'm redeemed and have hope. What a great God we serve. And how wonderful that He made cocoa beans!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I'm a Yellow Crayon

You Are a Yellow Crayon
The clouds part and the smell of daffodils and daisies fill the air when you are around. Your sunny disposition cheers most, and makes others (the jealous and bitter ones) wish you'd never gotten out of bed.
Another quiz said the following:
Your world is colored with happy, warm, fun colors.You have a thoughtful and wise way about you. Some people might even consider you a genius.Charming and eloquent, you are able to get people to do things your way.While you seem spontaneous and free wheeling, you are calculating to the extreme.Your color wheel opposite is purple. You both are charismatic leaders, but purple people act like you have no depth.

Monday, September 10, 2007


Today's post is a peek inside my quiet time. I'll comment on this more in the days to come. This is what God has been teaching me the past week:

“My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, listening closely to wisdom and directing your heart to understanding; furthermore, if you call out to insight and lift your voice to understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it like hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and discover the knowledge of God. For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up success for the upright; He is a shield for those who live with integrity so that He may guard the paths of justice and protect the way of His loyal followers. Then you will understand righteousness, justice and integrity – every good path. For wisdom will enter your mind, and knowledge will delight your heart. Discretion will watch over you, and understanding will guard you, rescuing you from the way of evil – from the one who says perverse things, from those who abandon the right paths to walk in ways of darkness, from those who enjoy doing evil and celebrate perversity, whose paths are crooked, and whose ways are devious. It will rescue you from a forbidden woman, from a stranger with her flattering talk, who abandons the companion of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God; for her house sinks down to death and her ways to the land of the departed spirits. None return who go to her; none reach the paths of life. So follow the way of good people and keep to the paths of the righteous. For the upright will inhabit the land and those of integrity will remain in it; but the wicked will be cut off from the land, and the treacherous uprooted from it.”

Thursday, September 06, 2007

My Morning

So, this is how the morning went...

Woke at 5:15 to alarm. Snooze. Alarm. Snooze. Alarm.
5:35 Ok, I'll get up ...
Totally wasted the next 15 minutes reading the news ... got sidetracked by Pavarotti's death. Sad.
6:00 read my bible
6:15 woke Princess
6:15-7:05 fixed Princess' hair, made breakfast, helped get snack, water, etc ready for Princess and delivered her to my carpool buddy.
7:19 felt a sharp pain in my left calf.
7:20 Strapped on my workout clothes and went for a walk (the route you and I walked, Josh).
7:25 started running up the big hill (the one we walked, Josh). Got 1/4 way and had to walk the rest of the way. All the while thinking, "Boy, I must really be out of shape..."
7:26 realize at the top of the hill that I'm in an episode. Nice. I'm two big hills away from my house ... approximately a mile away. It's times like these that I realize I'm a tough little southern lady. I can really push myself. However, darn it, I can't MAKE my muscles unparalyzed no matter how hard I push myself.
7:27 I reset my chronograph and start back down the hill. I was curious how long it will take me to make it home. Going down this hill with weak legs was a bit scary. I kept thinking that my legs were going to give way and then I would bump and roll down the rest of the way like a boiled egg. I had to sit down twice. Normally this area would be pretty quiet, but the neighbors were all leaving to take their kids to school. Nothing like seeing a loafer in workout clothes sitting there on the curb, taking in the hill country views.
7:35 or so I make it to the bottom and am faced with going back up the same hill, on street over. This hill is longer, but just about as steep. I pass by the Jr and High school kids waiting at the bus stop and am trudging along, walking very slowly. Then the hill steepens. I'm positively poking along at this point. I can hear a car pull up and stop in the road beside me and (loud choir voices)! It's my friend from two streets over. I get in and she takes me home.

I have no idea what time it is now, because it is taking every single bit of my stamina to put one foot in front of the other to get in the house. I hear King on the phone and realize I have JUST enough energy to get to the couch and get my "episode pillow" to keep my neck stabalized during myclonic jerks. I fall on the couch, manage to get my pillow under my neck and I'm done. I lay there paralyzed for a long time. King gets off the phone and comes to find me. He's sad to find me there and stays with me. When I can open my eyes, I notice my chronograph says 41 minutes. 41 minutes since I was on the top of the hill. I'm impressed with all I accomplished in just 41 minutes.

I was sick Friday evening, Tuesday and am sick again today. I must have a bug. Part of the reason I'm having episodes, I'm sure. Anyway, that's the way life goes in our house. I certainly got my workout this morning!! Nothing like walking through paralysis uphill. :)

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Back to School

We are starting our third week of school. It's a great year, although a challenging one. Third grade is not for the faint of heart. Our head master said at Back To School Day, "School is hard work. It's their job." Somehow that simple phrase gave me new energy and enthusiasm for what lies ahead this year. We've begun latin and have a real math book as well. Princess loves it all and feels very grown up.

I'm mentoring young women again this year and loving it. I am also reading a book called, "Polishing God's Monuments". Oh, this is such a good book. The author (Jim Andrews, I think) tells the story of his grown daughter's baffling, chronic illness and the enduring love of Father God and this woman's husband. It's a powerful read, woven with solid biblical truth. I highly recommend it.

Our company is beginning to be in the black a bit. King still gets more behind every day as there is literally no way one guy can do 7 jobs. I help out as much as I can, but one of the side effect of my migraines is difficult speech. I stumble over my words and have trouble speaking coherent thoughts. Not a great idea when doing customer support. So, I have not been answering phones much lately, but have been keeping up with other tasks.

I am also homeroom mom for Princess' class at school and that job is settling down after the big back to school push. I enjoy serving our new teacher (this is her first year) and the families in class.

Weightloss: I'm maintaining. I am living a totally normal lifestyle now and while I occassionally lose weight, I am maintaining my weightloss and that's nice. I still plan to lose more, but it will be a very gradual thing.

Off to school! Have a great day!