Wednesday, March 22, 2017

This Mom Climbs her way to the top!

The Mom, Monique & Trainer Rosie
I had the opportunity to join our local 9Round Team climbing the stairs to the top of the US Bank Building downtown this past weekend for the "Fight for Air Climb 2017". This event is organized by the American Lung Association in Wisconsin (ALA).  What a great experience it was! I always express how important it is to surround yourself with the amazing people, that help make a better version of you each day. I'm so thankful for my 9Round trainers who gave me that push to commit to it.  If I did not hop on the computer taking the 1st step to register, I would've not had the motivation to move forward for this fun experience!

The Mom, Mia & Trina do a Practice Climb!
Living each day is about the COMMITMENT, not the FEELING!! Who in the world would wake up saying, "YEAH! I'm going to climb 1,034 steps today?!" 9Rounder Rosie knows, I was more willing to be her cheerleader than climbing partner that day!  Monique Hughes, Senior Manager of Special Events @ALA & her team worked with us on practicing each Saturday in a shorter-version stairwell downtown.  This was so helpful in building up my legs to be prepared for the day and also hearing tips from others that have done this climb years prior; take your time, don't start off running, use the outer border of each platform to calm your heart rate, stay at an even pace and finish it out one step at a time.  I was also able to bring my 8 yr. old Mia to practice with me and she loved it! There were a ton of kids participating on the day of the event.  I'm looking forward to having her join me next year! (Until then, we are warming up for our Girls on the Run 5K together coming this June!  Again, commitment, not feeling, ha!)  

9 Rounders at Warm Up with Trainer Jerry!
The actual day of event just amazed me and inspired me as the main floor filled with Fire Fighters in full gear climbing to the top within seconds of each other one at a time!  These men and women run into burning buildings for goodness sake and continue to push themselves to help others in raising money and doing the climb for ALA.  It just blew my mind in what people do for others each day, pushing themselves to constantly give more of all they can.  Below are some fun videos I had a chance to put together with Monique as the event coordinator, Trina & Drew from 9Round Oak Creek/ Racine & Tosa & a few of our awesome members. Thanks again to the team that continues to give me the confidence in pushing this Mom to the top!  I encourage & challenge all you amazing moms to find a local fitness event in your area that you can start preparing for that may help a special cause in your life, and most importantly for a better, healthier you while having great friends & family to support all you do!

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

"The Shack" Chat!

Original Book by William P. Young
THE SHACK (Written by William P. Young) Book & Movie Chat! (CAUTION: This may be a spoiler for you if you have not read the book or seen movie yet!)

When I saw the trailer for this movie,  I was very excited! A few years ago, a friend had lent me this book that I quickly read through it all thinking, they have to make this a movie!  Years later AND with Tim McGraw appearing in it to be a bonus, the movie has arrived.  This is the first book I have ever read that followed with a movie and said, "The Movie is so much better."  You don't hear that too often!  If you are not a person of strong faith, it sometimes takes a miracle or sometimes a tragedy, for that to change.  Either way, exploring more ways to grow in faith is a blessing.

"The Holy Spirit, Papa, Mack & The Son"
This movie gives you an even bigger, more beautiful perspective than the book.  The colors and beauty look beyond magnificent in a huge theater setting & makes the story even more "heavenly".  The view, sound, sight, and understanding of how much beauty could be brought from such a tragedy is well read in the book but so heart warming and breath taking as you see it on the big screen. My heart still hurts from this movie feeling as angry as the father did when tragedy struck his family.  More than tragedy, let's be real, a parents worst nightmare...ever...  As a mother I would feel the guilt and pain of not being there with my family, how could a mother let such a thing happen and how does a mother & father move forward together as a family?  But even Nan, the mother in this movie has that sense of Godliness, peace and calmness knowing God is always in control.  Nan refers to God as "Papa", understanding that God is indeed the Holy Father of us all and shows the respect and trust she holds in Him. Her part was "small" but very serene and effective as a character that God trusts.

"The Son" telling Mack to "trust Him".
Even still, you see the "Big Picture". You understand in this movie how blessings are born through enormous pain.  You comprehend that sin is not God's doing, and forgiveness frees yourself from so much hate and anger that if not released, negative impact can re-live in generations to come resulting in either peace and comfort or continued hate if you don't let go.  So much symbolic meaning in this movie; the ladybug flying off when Mack, the dad, learns to let go and forgive.  The waterfall representing the Kings Tears, that Mack explained to his youngest daughter earlier in the movie and appearing after Mack's with wisdom and him understanding that it is never his job to ever judge.  Even more meaning; The tomb, the flowers spread all over the white blanket,  and in the casket and once buried, growing something so much larger than life in the flower garden, the bad roots of how not to pick them to toss but to combine the "poison" with beauty and how special the combination together can be, the judging of who goes to Heaven or Hell and learning that we are not the qualified nor ever will be to be the judge, and let's not forget the walking on water alone or together, how so powerful.   All the above and so much more gives the true meaning to always humble yourself and keep God in control.  Trust in Him, and how much can He trust in YOU?

It was in awe of physically seeing each role of The Father, The Son & The Holy Spirit through three separate individuals but how powerful all three of them are as ONE.  Without God, you can be consumed with the troubles, negativity and challenges and feel like you are drowning until you lift your head to keep your eyes, heart, and focus on Him.  With that, God helps you thru the unimaginable.  You keep moving forward not just for you but to be there for others, like their oldest daughter needed Mack the most to be there, present.

This story explains how important it is to be in the present at all times and always trust in Him. There's so much to this story that I pickup on new understanding each time I read, see or think about it.  To have the joy of seeing someone we lost so tragically and know how happy they are in heaven.  That loved one does not hang onto what we worry about here on earth, but lives in pure joy and beauty with no sense of time lost until we see them again in heaven.  

All unimaginable right?  Or maybe even unbelievable?  We'll, on my very own journey, I embraced this movie and continue to learn how to trust in God and understand there is always a bigger picture than what I know is right in front of me.  Until then, I'll stay focused on the present, not get caught up in making the negative a permanent place, and to continue moving forward in the most positive way to keep the shinning light on my path.  The past is the past, the present is a gift.

More beautiful busy Moms share their reviews: 
Darlene mother of 3 and grandmother of  soon to be 8!

"The Shack:  I literally just walked out of the theater after seeing the BEST movie I think I have ever seen!  Challenge: Take 2 hours out of your life and open your mind and heart...GO see this movie!  Imagery & concept shook my being!  Don't want to stop talking about it.  Thanks Lori M. for experiencing The Shack with me.
-Darlene S.

Marylisa mother of 2 beautiful girls!

"Very intense, we've learned a lot to forgive and forget.  I'm sure the faith in God you have instilled in your family is strong enough to understand the trials in this world and the love of God that carries us through as He goes through everything along side with us. Funny, I see people in colors like that (they give you a view through Papa's eyes in this movie, colors, all colors representing people).  A book you can put down and take in, the movie gives you everything, all of it, all at once."  -Marylisa A.