Posted in Things To Contemplate

Wonder Thighs

Out of necessity, I have begun an exercise and diet regimen. Let me be perfectly transparent on this subject. I cheat a lot. Not huge amounts, mind you, but if there is a fingerprint in the icing of your cupcake… it was me.  I always drink my green smoothie but I put coconut and creme brulee in my coffee.   I keep suckers in my purse because menopause is tough. Sometimes I quit before the mile is up on the treadmill and tell google fit I made it to the end of  workout 1. If I make it to the cool down part of the yoga workout dvd… I just go ahead and catch a nap right there.  I’ve dropped almost 10 lbs and have accumulated quite a wardrobe to get me through this.  But today I discovered something I was not expecting. In fact, I have discovered several things that a person who only moves back and forth between the fridge and the couch might not know.

Whoever invented those slippery skin-tight running pants was a dang genius.  For the first time today I wore a pair of these things. I have been putting it off because they looked like they were going to be hot and uncomfortable, and I was right. You could go surfing in these things and nothing is getting through. supergirl     However,  I am a huge fan of Wonder Woman. She is my alter ego. It used to be Zena the warrior princess but I read an article about her being some kind of  stripper or something and decided I didn’t want to be associated with that. Now I kind of think they were from the same island of amazons, just from different sides of the track. Like Audrey Hepburn and Miley.    Any hoo…. i decided to try them.

I have shorts and leggings and yoga pants to work out in but this * (compression Pants) is another world all together. Here is why.

  • IF you get on the treadmill and break 3.5 mph in regular work out clothes, one of two things happen:  You will either get road rash on the inner thigh or start a fire, depending on your choice of attire. Either way, your walking around like you just got off a two day horseback ride and there is no real cure except time and  burn cream. But these compression pants just let your thighs glide and slide as if  you were oiled up for the beach.
  •  I mean to tell you that I was like an olympian and there was no noise.  That swooshing sound some pants make when you walk is simply not there. No swish swash sound of the thighs rubbing together only the sound of REO Speedwagon and Mandisa, because you mixed up your old music with your new music on your phone- cheering you on to finishing your 3/4 of a mile walk.
  • They are trendy. Where else can you get the opportunity to where modern art disguised as a necessary, useful  article of clothing, that is disguised as pants that are not pants at all but really slippery leggings. ( Leggings are not pants so it’s  quite a wardrobe decision.)  I chose wonder woman, but you can get an array of colors and styles . I even saw some with oreos on them which is like dangling a carrot in front of a horse, but they were cute.
  • We have all wanted to join the circus at one time or another or dreamed of being a super hero or a  pole dancer  or a break dancer and I think this is just a little taste of childhood dreams being worn in such a way that they are socially acceptable.  You can live out your dreams:   “Ladies and Gentlemen…. Turn your attention to the center treadmill and watch as Wonder thighs transforms from a middle-aged menopausal  mermaid with a double chin to a  Skinny middleaged menopausal woman with a fake tan and chin splints.”
  •  They distract you from the pain. As I rolled over this morning, I wanted to DIE from the pain of a yoga work out that required me to stand like a brave warrior and then hoist my butt into the air in line with my forehead as my toes rested on the earth above my head while I focused on breathing in health and vitality and exhaling tension. But I got right out of that bed because I had these beauties to look forward too. Not missing that.
  •  And finally: They keep you humble. There really is no shame in wearing a pair of pants that are not really pants at all ( as I mentioned earlier) that cause you to just slide off in the floor and kind of roll around in slow motion as you attempt to sit on your yoga ball to work your abs or pump that iron. It takes a long time to become one with the ball when your slippery pants are dumping you on the ground.  Its an art form so have patience. At some point, you wont care about your dignity anymore. You will simply be glad that for once you did your own thing. You didn’t quit. You didn’t give up. I can feel the transformation taking place as I am writing this…..
  • Here, I will just model a few pairs for you so you can get an idea of the effects of these amazing pants. new-women-yoga-running-pants-high-waist-cropped

We will talk soon but right now I am going to graze like a goat and  spend some quality time resenting  people who can tolerate dairy. xoxoxox

Sharon

Posted in Things To Contemplate

To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before…even if there is a sign that says not to.

My Husband and I bought an RV.  It was Christened the USS Enterprise and on the back it said “to boldly go”.  So we went and bought it.  It was a sign you know, it was Star Trek.  It wasn’t new but it was really well taken care of. comfortable bed, microwave, two 6 ton tv’s complete with a VCR and tapes and enough room to sleep a bunch of people.rv1

I didn’t think I was going to like it much, but I did. A lot.  Once I got in there and started to fix her up, I was ready to sell the house and send the kids to boarding school. I began to think of all the memories and magical trips we would take. I filled up the refrigerator with food and drink, packed extra underwear and down the road we went with a 12-year-old and  dreams. Big Dreams.

It all started off well enough.  I was giddy about the leg room and the phone charger and the desk like dash-board that would hold my library of books.  It was nice to be able to tinkle without pulling over every 20 minutes which has been my new hobby since menopause started. The hot flash window was amazing and the idea that I could go to bed any time I wanted was amazing.

Our first official stop was at Walmart.  I thought we had arrived at our destination but it was just for supplies.  I thought thats what RV’s did… but apparently its just a stop-over. Let me explain something about Cowboy. He plans nothing. He flies by the seat of his pants. He goes where the wind takes him. I am not made to operate that way. I want a plan, an ETA, a destination and I want it a week or two in advance.  But alas, I was not in charge so we stopped at Walmart and it made us later than we wanted to be.  Cowboy wanted to be there before dark, where ever there was.

By the time we arrived near the secret destination it was dark. I put on my glasses, I looked around and saw the sign that said” all public areas closed due to fire damage” Ok. I think we will just find another place, But Cowboy drove right through that do not go here invisible barrier.

” What are you doing? ” I asked. ” didn’t you see the sign?”

“Dont worry about that sign”  he answers” I am going way passed the public lands”

We are in the forest, on a mountain and the pavement just turned to dirt and ole Captain Kirk just drove on like he was in a four-wheel drive pick up.

I need you to use your imagination now and envision a giant yellow diamond… about 3 feet by 3 feet.  Yellow orange… like the color of sunshine with reflectors that glowed in the headlights of the enterprise. Now imagine on this sign a stick figure person running for its life because a bolder and a falling tree are about to end his little stick figure existence.  That was the next sign on that dirt road that had become more of a washboard than a road.

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Did you see that sign, I asked

Yes he angrily replied

Now I am bouncing all over this rolling hotel grasping desperately for a seatbelt and a bible , while holding my chest to keep it from bouncing out of my clothes and thinking to myself ” this is how I am going to die”

He keeps driving.

I am realizing that there is no phone signal and no one knows where we are and that it would take weeks to find our bodies because no one else would go past the stinking signs that clearly informed us that we were going to die if we kept going.

Now there are tears rolling down my cheeks and I am about to abandon ship when a better idea comes into my head. A more natural one that is just more me… and right about the time that the pot holes turned into pits that led straight to hellfire and I decide on mutiny. Something came over me and I threw off that seatbelt and began a rant from the depths of my fear so heart wrenching that he did not even try to argue with me( or at least I did not hear him.) After voicing my objections and fear of impending doom I ran to the back of the Rv and threw Myself on the bed, covered my ears with my hands and prayed” Lord please just let it be quick. ” My body was flying up and bouncing off the mattress with every rock and hole he drove through. I struggled to get in between the covers hoping that would hold me down and sandwiched my head between two pillows. I can hear him yelling from the drivers seat ” WOO HOO baby, I promised you an adventure”.

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All I could think was  this is just like when I bought him the Elk Call. It was too much for him. He was loosing his mind and laughing like a crazed old inn keeper who was going to axe through a door at any moment and scream “Heres Johnny”. For the love of all things purple, I just wanted it to stop. So I pretended like I was asleep and Somewhere in there I fell asleep or passed out, I am not sure which.  I was slacking on my mom duties during this ride from hell probably because of the trama… but I have no idea where my 12 year old was all this time, she was oddly quiet. Shock probably.  Hopefully  therapy will help me recall the things I am sure I blocked out.

The next thing I remember is cowboy standing at the end of the bed grinning like a Cheshire cat and he says ” do you see my Smile”

I said “yes do you see mine?”

He didn’t answer, just walked away. I had decided to just stay there in that bed until we were safely home again.

But the next morning, I woke up next to a stream, under pine trees with the smell of coffee coming from the front of the RV.  My sweet daughter frying bacon and my husband putting just the right amount of creme’ brulee creamer in my cup. He had turned it around and gone to an actual RV park with picnic tables and a fire pit and Wifi.  It was as if he knew that pinterest would make up for nearly killing me.   That’s why we are still together. He gets me. And he’s willing to pay for all the therapy I need.

 

 

Posted in Things To Contemplate

Creating Meaningful Art

Desert Angel Mixed Media Arts

When I begin a new project, I take a thousand notes, draw a thousand pictures, research and create an outline. I gather supplies,footage,and do experiments.  Some projects take me a few hours, some a few months- like the one I am about to show you. This is a project that has been years in the making, really. It is my testimony and life mission and with the help of a few friends, I was able to say what I needed to say as well as I could have said it.

Create art that is meaningful to you. In that lies the therapy.

I would like to thank Nelda, Donna, Rhonda,Betty and Leasa for all your help and for giving me not only your time but your amazing friendship. I love you so much.

This is the completed canvas and below that is the video of it’s creation.

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The Woman at…

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Posted in Chronicles of The Country Girl Experiment, Things To Contemplate

Battle of the Chicken Hawk

I stumbled out the door at 7:02 am with an oversized cup of cinnamon coffee, a pair  of red plaid pajama pants, bed head and a sweater that did not quite do the job. Each week day at about this time I drag myself to the van, honk the horn to get my high schoolers to zero hour ( that’s another story) and then without ever leaving the car, I wish them well and drive myself back home to warm up my coffee, resume my reading and prepare for my  amazing creative day. Sounds easy enough?

But today was just a little different.  Today, waiting for me at the gate was a chicken about half the size of the other roosters which we have affectionately name :Chicken HAWK….chickenhawk1

Suddenly, interrupting my morning routine was this tiny little angry rooster attacking my red, checked, beloved, plaid ,pajama pants. Claws and beaks and feathers and squawking and screaming and coffee and dancing. Yes. All of that was happening. I went with what I had and proceeded to defend myself with my purse and sent him flying across the yard, but before I could get out of the gate the little beelzebub booger got the other leg. Whoosh… across the yard he went again . One. Two more times until finally he gave up and I had won this little battle.  I don’t know if he really, really loved my pants or really, really hated them.  I don’t have time to examine the feelings of chickens.  I am far to busy examining the condition of pajama pants . So I am going to say that Red plaid pajama pants are a fashion statement he just will not tolerate. chickenpants2

When I returned from my trip, there he was, waiting like a protester at a Trump rally and I had to make a decision:  Was I going to  allow this to intimidate me or hurt me or keep me from my dreamy hot cup of cinnamon heaven or was I going to go all  G I Jane?  Jane! Jane it is.

I got out of the van, purse in hand and opened the gate.  I took a deep breath and charged, purse waiving, yelling and stomping. That rooster cocked his head as if he was  realizing that he might be chicken nuggets soon and began to back off fast.   I’m smiling… It was all going pretty well until I lost my footing coming up the concrete ramp… Which is why the above picture is covered in grass.  Anyway, this display of power apparently worked because after I got up off the ground, Chicken Hawk would not even look at me and did not come after me. I don’t know if he was defeated, or if he was just ashamed of me, but I took my morning back.chickenhawk2

Everyone… Everyone has a Chicken Hawk. That thing that keeps us  from embracing our day, that tries to keep us from living our life the way God intended us to live it.  Maybe its an addiction, a loss, an illness, depression, food, an abusive history, an abusive present, a disability, finances, a spouse that is a total pain in the rump, a hangup you just cant get past that keeps you from engaging your moments as if they were amazing opportunities to be creative and imaginative and joyful.( Maybe its run-on sentences.)  Maybe you are a total pain in the rump and it’s your attitude that keeps you from moving ahead.

Some days my CH is my history or my current grief or a feeling of being overwhelmed or old junk that I thought I dealt with already.  Some days I don’t even notice that I have one. Lately, My Chicken hawk is Lupus. Sometimes this disease tells me that I should just give up and that I will never do the things I know God has called me to do.  It tells me that my dreams are way to big for the strength I have or the talent or the knowledge or resources. And some days I listen. Some days I get down and quit. Some days I make endless excuses and some times I just do the wrong thing because I feel like it. Some days it is cereal out of the box and an inappropriate Netflix binge so I don’t have to think about it.  But then God reminds me of this:

John 10:10  “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

It’s always humbling when God lets you know how full of crap you are.

It’s always pride swallowing when you are forced to admit you have been a little or a lot lazy.

It’s always  stomach turning when you are forced to admit you have been carousing and listening to a thief and a liar and a murderer and destroyer.

That Scripture, that thought is the essence of who Jesus is for us and the epitome of his love for us. Yes He did come to die on the cross and take our place in judgement, but that was only the beginning and some people just never get past that moment.  It’s about moving forward about learning to live in “Jesus-ness”. By that I mean getting real about the lies we tell our selves about the things that hold us back. It’s about dealing with the challenge of it even though it’s hard and easier to stay in it.  It’s about accepting that challenge as part of the journey.  I mean seriously leaving behind the things that keep us in the darkness.  I mean learning to love like Christ, see Like Christ,  see others like Christ, think like Christ until it’s automatic. It’s about losing the religion, putting your money  and your time where your mouth is. It’s about His grace and  blessings  of uniqueness to each of us that is our own personal creative gifts that we get to use, enjoy, perfect and serve with.  It’s about allowing the Holy Spirit to inspire you to spend your time being the creative you were called to be.

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The View out my back door #ilovenewmexico

Posted in Things To Contemplate

Cross Canvas using Masking Fluid

Desert Angel Mixed Media Arts

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This is a fun technique using masking fluid. I began by adhering  pattern paper to an 8 X 10 canvas using matte gel medium, traced a cross shape on the canvas, and covered the rest in masking fluid… The rest of this process is explained in this Quick Video Tutorial.

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