“Why are you fat, Mommy?”

I have said this before and I will say it again, my son is honest, candid, and doesn’t intentionally mean to be hurtful.  Keeping this in mind, it is still extremely hard when he asks such personal questions.

Two years ago, after my husband lost 50 pounds on his mail route, my son started asking me, “Why are you fat and the rest of us are thin?”  I would look at my small plate, with the smallest portions in the family, and say, “I don’t know.”

Last year, when I found two exercise classes that I loved, and committed to, he asked, “If you exercise, and eat healthy, then why are you still fat?”

Once again, my response would be, “I don’t know.”

“Why should I exercise if I can still be fat?”  He inquired.

“Because even if I don’t look the way I want, I want my body to be healthy.  When I get tests done at the doctor, my blood says that I live a healthy lifestyle.  I don’t know why I still look like this.” I said on my lips, but inside I cried.

Anyway, through my weight loss journey, my kids have watched me.  They have seen me come home from the gym sweaty.  They see what I eat, and they notice that they eat more than me.  They noticed right away when I quit eating gluten (wheat products), and they ask lots of questions along the way.  We are glad they ask questions, because we share genetics.  Who is to say they won’t have their own fitness journey someday.

This week, I learned the importance of working out in front of my kids.  I love my spinning and Body Pump classes, but I needed more exercises in my week that worked with my new work schedule.  Scott and I bought Insanity, so we could get toned together.  We have completed one month of this program, sweating, crying (at times), and getting through each intense workout.

The other morning, Scott wasn’t feeling well, and 5 minutes into one of the most intensive workouts I have ever done, he left me to do the hour-long workout ALONE.  I was sad and frustrated.  I tried to make my body do things that it has never done.

About 55 minutes into the workout, I was spent.  Done. Tired.  READY to be done.  It was too much.  Sweat was pouring off of my forehead.  I ran out of water ages ago.  Every single muscle in my body ached.

My over critical son, who is famous for pointing out the obvious walked into the room to watch me complete my workout.  I kept waiting for him to say something like, “You don’t do it as good as they do.”

INSTEAD he yelled, “YOU CAN DO IT, MOMMY!”

That’s all it took.  My muscles started working again, and I completed the last exercise before the cool down.  I finished the tape and have completed two more videos since that morning (with Scott).

My body might not be perfect.  I have MANY workouts before I am the size or the shape I want to be, but at least my kids KNOW how hard I am trying.  That is the lifelong lesson I want them to remember.

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Liebster Award!

I am really new to the blogging world, and like all forms of social media, I am finding inspiration and motivation from other bloggers.  Needless to say, I was speechless when Amy at Love Bug nominated me for the Liebster Award.  You really should check out her beautiful blog.  She writes about photography, her life, dreams, and health goals.  She inspires me in so many ways.

Anyway, I am going to do my best to follow the rules of this award.

Its called the Liebster Award – Liebster means “dearest” in German and its an award given to up and coming bloggers with less than 200 followers.

The Rules!
Each person must post 11 facts about themselves
..and answer the 11 questions that are tagged for them
…and list the 11 bloggers you nominate
…and make up your own 11 questions to ask your nominees
11 Facts about me:
* I thank God everyday for my amazing husband and our two miracles.
* I love to read!
* This summer Scott and I drove over 7,000 miles. We touched both oceans and in two trips drove coast to coast. It was life changing and amazing!
* My dream is to teach or help people in need.  I pray that I can take my kids on a few mission trips before they turn 18, and I believe God will make it happen.
* I am working on getting enough nerve to go back to college for my master’s degree.  I really want to teach at the university level and learn more about writing.
* I am surprised whenever we don’t actually win the lottery.
* I have lost over 37 pounds this year and I thank God that I finally figured out what my body was not responding to.
* I am passionate about photography.  Photographs are memories and I want to remember everything.
* I have been to 35 states, and I am excited to visit the last 15!  Seeing all 50 states has been a goal since I was very young.  Road trip, anyone???
* On the day of our accident, I FELT God, and know that we lived because we WILL make a difference to others on Earth.
* My biggest dream job is to spend the summer with a former president or amazing person, photograph them and then write their authorized biography.  I believe with my heart and soul that it will happen.
Questions for me, from Amy:
1. What got you to start blogging?  I started blogging as a way to show off my photography and once I started writing, I can’t stop.  Even with our boring lives, I have millions of stories to tell. I love it!
2. Any pets?  Ana has a Beta named Flower.  He is strongest fish I have ever met.
3. What is your favorite holiday and why?  I love Easter.  It reminds me of God’s love, promise of new life, and new beginnings.
4. Favorite type of music? I wish it was more interesting, but I LOVE pop music.  There, I said it and it’s true.  I do love the Beatles and classical music, but I always have the radio on, singing along to Adel, Bruno Mars, and the other big singers of the moment.
5. Facebook or Twitter?  I am on both.  Follow FotoCourtney on Twitter.  I don’t really get Twitter, but I am there.
6. What are some of your hobbies? Photography and photo editing really get to my artistic side.  I love capturing the moment and then making it even better on my computer.  I also come alive when I write.  They are my favorites these days.
7. What is your favorite thing about the summer? I love the freedom of summer.
8. What do you love most about where you live?  We live where we live because our family is less than an hour away.
9. If you could jump on a plane today where would you go? Where wouldn’t I go?  I want to see it all!  I have always wanted to live in England.
10. What is your dream job?  I would LOVE to get paid for photography and writing.  If I could say I was a photographer and writer and make a great living for my family, it would be amazing!  I believe it will happen, I am learning patience too!
11. Who do you look up to and why?  I admire my parents.  They are both dreamers and support finding life happiness. I also look up to Oprah and Julia Roberts.  They are strong women who stay out of the media, except when they are helping others.  I also look up to the activism of Paul McCartney and my son is named after him to encourage him to make a difference in this world. The list could go on, but I will stop with those.
Nominating 11 New Up and Coming Bloggers is hard because most of the blogs I follow have been nominated by Amy already and I don’t follow many others yet.  There are so may blogs out there to read and follow, and I tend to follow those with a personal connection.  Plus, many people don’t write often and I would not want to nominate someone who doesn’t really want their blog out there for the world.  I will do my best.
Nominees:
1. Krista from The Austin Life
2. Melissa from Cat Naps in the Sunshine
3. Myra Katherine from Raising Magnolias
4. Abbie from All That Makes You
5. Alicia from Rocks in their Pockets
6. Brandie from Geeky and Twisted
Sorry, I know I am 5 short, but that is all I have.  I have chosen people who blog regularly about their lives and who inspire me to keep writing.  None of these people do it for followers, they just love sharing, like me! We all have a story to tell.
My Questions for my Nominees:
1. Where do you find inspiration?
2. Where is your happy place?
3. Describe your perfect day or moment.
4. What is the best book you have read in 2012?
5. Where is one place you want to visit before you die?
6. Who inspires you?
7. Tell me ONE thing that most people do NOT know about you.
8. What is your favorite treat?
9. What is your Secret Shame?
10. Best movie ever and why?
11. Favorite quote.
Thank you so much to everyone who reads my blog and follows along.  I am looking for courage to take the next step in life and so many of you are pushing me toward it, whether you know it or not.  I am truly blessed!
PS I don’t know why it won’t let me add spaces.  I tried!  Sorry!