Wednesday, February 29, 2012

There's Never Enough Time

We say it all the time, "There are just not enough hours in the day," or "Where did the time go," or my personal favorite "I'm sorry, I'd love to help you but I just don't have the time right now." Time is money, time is fleeting, time is a human construction, well not time so much as clocks.

So what if you had more time? What would you do with it? I thought about that a lot last year when I retired. So much more time. What would I do with all that extra time? Ha! Well, do you know what today is? It represents 24 hours more in 2012 than you had in 2011, and you've already wasted seven hours of that! [Speaking for myself, of course.]

I saw a reference to this the other day on the Internet, but I can't remember where. Something about people planning to do some one special thing on this day, February 29, 2012 that they might not have done yesterday, something they had been meaning to do and just hadn't gotten around to doing. I think in this case it was about driving to an old home place that they remembered from their childhood but had not visited in decades.

It did get me thinking about time and more specifically this day in time. I feel like I should do something special. I don't want to let this extra day slip away. I don't want to treat it like a normal day, like yesterday or tomorrow. This day is special; it's a gift that we only get once every four years after all.

What should I do? Should I call a friend that I haven't spoken to in months or one I haven't touched base with in years? Should I go to a park, take some time to smell the roses, so to speak? Should I make a special meal or bake some bread for a neighbor? Should I make a pledge not to turn on the TV today, to read a book instead; or practice the piano, or tackle a big project I've been putting off?

So many choices. And then I thought - I have those choices to make every day, not just today. Every morning that I wake up in this world, I have the choice to do the same thing I did yesterday or to do something different, something special. Something that, if I didn't do it, I might regret it.

We know that our days on the earth are numbered, and, if you believe the Bible, that God knows the span of our lives. I'm pretty sure that He has even taken into account all those February 29ths, no matter what His calendar looks like.

But I still think today would be a good day to do something different - then again, so would tomorrow!

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Diet - Motivations and Milestones

Ok, so I've posted about my need and desire to lose weight and the fact that my son is getting married in October being my prime motivation - this year anyway! I figured out that I have 33 weeks until the big day.

I was also motivated in the short-run by the fact that the season of Lent started this week. A perfect time to start a diet. I couldn't decide what to give up for Lent - alcohol, bread, candy - so I gave up all three! A bit of an over-reach, maybe, but it speaks to my seriousness about this diet! Instead of alcohol, I try to reach for water or diet iced tea; instead of bread, vegetables or salad; and instead of candy, fruit. So far - almost 3 days - and I've stuck with it! Now, that doesn't mean I have eaten only things that are good for me. I did eat some Girl Scout cookies and a few corn chips, but . . . NO alcohol, NO bread, NO candy. Woo hoo!!

If, and this is a big if, I can get through six weeks of Lent sticking to this diet, it will be a huge jump-start to the other 27 weeks. In the meantime, I'm spending a lot of time looking for recipes and menu ideas that I know I will eat.  You can actually find a lot of great recipes - even healthy ones - on Pinterest.  I'm also seeing a lot of beautiful people and beautiful clothes there which is definitely motivating me to stay on this diet.

UPDATE: This post on my diet mentions in passing the practice of giving up things, in this case food, for Lent. I've actually only done this a few times in my life, almost always it was for a very 'temporal' reason, such as a diet. As an adult Christian I've become more aware of the 'spiritual' reasons behind this practice. In addition to giving up certain food items, I am also trying to pray more often, to meditate on the ultimate sacrifice of our Lord and to recognize that it is only with God's help that I will be successful in this and all other endeavors.  I'm no theologian and my understanding of the season of Lent  may be simplistic but I think the ultimate goal of these six weeks for me is to focus on God not self.  Do you observe Lent?  If so, how?