Sunday, December 28, 2014

Speaker Available

From time to time I have opportunities to speak to Relief Societies and Young Women groups or mixed groups, so for ease of referral, I am listing some of my favorite topics here. If you would like me to address a topic of your choosing, I am always up for that, as well.

"When Life Gives You Lemons" or "When Life Throws You a Curve Ball" (which is basically WLGYL replacing the lemons lessons with sports metaphors and pictures of baseballs). This is a great presentation to help people get through the difficulties of life with their faith intact.

"Becoming an Inner Beauty Queen" - a reminder for women to stop hyper-focusing on their physical flaws and stop comparing themselves to some unattainable ideal and remember to cultivate and appreciate more important qualities in themselves and others.

"You Are an Original" - a great one for young women, to remind them that they are unique and that no one else can do the things they were put here to do.

"Mourning with those that Mourn" - a reminder of how we can be more sensitive and helpful and less hurtful and judging to those around us who grieve loss of loved ones or health or life opportunities.

"A Sense of Humor as a Survival Skill" - how to cultivate humor to help ease over the rough spots of life.

"Gift from the Sea" - taken from the Anne Morrow Lindbergh book of the same name, I illustrate the different seasons of a woman's life using seashells as visual aids. This is my favorite non-guilt-producing presentation, because I think women sometimes need a reminder that they are not expected to do it all, all the time. This is great with ocean waves playing in the background and everyone on beach towels and served with tropical goodies.

These are the presentations most requested, but if you have a special need in your congregation, I am always willing to tackle a new topic. I use lots of my own life experiences and lots of humor in all these presentations. I have been a presenter at BYU-Hawaii Education Week and their Women's Conference as well. I have lectured at BYU-Provo. I have done numerous Relief Society Birthday Parties and have spoken at Singles Conferences around the country.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Diary of a Wimpy Adult

Since last January I have been on a downward spiral, but in a good way. I had lost 48 pounds and was happily back in all my out-of-style clothes from, um, I don't know, the 1980s, maybe. That's what my kids tell me, anyway. They weren't buying that I was "vintage." I guess it is only cool to wear vintage stuff if you were not actually alive in that decade. Or something. All I know is that I was rocking my stonewashed jeans and leather jacket and I didn't want to hear about it!

I did something I've never done before when I'd lost weight. I got rid of my fat clothes. Gaining back the weight was an option I took off the table. I was a size 8, and I was going to stay a size 8. And by size 8, you understand that I really mean size 10, because we all know that sizes have been adjusted for inflation (or is it deflation?) so that they could invent the size 0, also known as Skeletor. So I told myself that if my new clothes started to fit snugly, that would be my signal to retrench and I would lose ten pounds rather than wait until I had an extra fifty to lose.

I lost the weight between January and June and then maintained it from June to December, and I was proud of myself for not only losing the weight but for continuing my healthy eating habits. Then with two trips, one of them over Christmas, and the other in February, I ditched the healthy eating in favor of a holiday or two and gained back ten to fifteen pounds. So I have gone back on the program I used to lose the weight, and I am once again disciplining myself. You see, it isn't just that I want to maintain the weight loss. I love having more energy. My back had stopped hurting, my knees didn't buckle and I didn't have to make old lady noises when I got up off the floor. Even with the extra ten back on, I had started to notice a difference in the quality of my health. So I did something drastic. Something I've never done before in 58 years of living. I joined a gym.

I had been happily doing water aerobics three or more times a week at the YMCA pool. If you ask me, that is the perfect exercise program. You are already wet, so you don't have to worry about sweating. It is fun and easy on the joints, and the class is full of geriatric women, so no matter what your stage of physical fitness, you can always find someone there who looks worse than you do in a bathing suit. But the local YMCA ran out of funding and could no longer afford to keep their pool open. It was a sad day when they drained that pool.

So when my neighbor across the street invited me to try out her gym, where they offered a free two-week pass, I decided to do it. We have been attending the 6 a.m. class called "The Morning Grind.".I am in my third week now, which means all that jumping and jogging jostled something lose in my brain and I actually signed up. For three months. Of exercise. With weights. On machines that all look like instruments of torture. When I should be in bed like all the other sensible cookie-baking grandmas. And I gave them money for the privilege of pain.

The instructor is a very nice lady named Heather. She is about a size 2 and looks like she could bench press Arnold Swarzenegger. She regularly does something called "correcting my form." But the way she makes me do things hurts way more than the way I was doing it, so I'm sure she's out to lunch. Lunch being a bunch of sprouts with raspberry vinaigrette.

I thought I would share a few of my random thoughts from today's workout.

I wonder if they make workout-style Depends for the active senior, in neon colors. Until they do, I am doing Modified Jumping Jacks. I wonder who should be the spokesperson. Maybe June Lockheart. Unless she's already dead. Or Madonna. The ads could say "I don't do push-ups without my Pull-ups."

This is a lot of effort to go to just so I can look good in my coffin.

I think they should make camouflage weights that look heavier than they are so that everybody else won't know that you are wimping out and grabbing the three-pounders. I wonder if "Diary of a Wimpy Adult" could ride the coattails of "Diary of a Wimpy Kid."

How come everyone in this class has thin ankles? Am I the only one here with thick ankles? Would it be impolite of me to ask that sort-of chubby gal in the long pants to show me her ankles? The woman next to me has the ankles of my dreams. Is it a sin to want to be resurrected with thin ankles?

I wonder how long I should do this before I buy some cool workout clothes? All the most fit ladies have neon stripes and stretchy waistbands on their black pants, paired with matching neon shoes. If I got some cool workout clothes, maybe Heather would know I was serious and would stop giving me helpful pointers about how to make the exercises more painful.

I wonder if I can get my grandkids to call them triceps instead of "wobblies."

I wonder if I could write a blog post and start soliciting donations for the YMCA pool.