Saturday Snippets

As I’m writing this little installment of Saturday Snippets, I’m a bit in denial that July is now tipping into the “it just started and is now wildly speeding out of control ” zone.

Holy hello, where has the month gone??

Besides pondering that deep question, I thought I’d share with you what I was up to this week.

I’ve kept athletic things low key ’cause I went and got this done on Tuesday…..

And when you have that much open skin…well….the idea of sweating alot into it wasn’t appealing 🀣

I’ve had ideas for quite awhile to pull together some pieces I already had. I got with our local artist for a consult and set things in motion.

This is what my arm previously looked like.

It was so exciting to pull the ideas out of my head, hand them over to her and let her weave them together.

To say I’m in love with how it’s shaping up is an understatement. This piece is about 90% done now.

In two weeks I’ll go back to touch up any areas and also to have some lace added around my wrist.

Since I’m writing a post on my most recent tattoo shenanigans, I thought I’d share questions/comments etc that I’ve gotten. I have many people in my life who understand what goes into it all and mostly there’s a whole lot who don’t.

So here’s my favorite question.

Did it hurt? The first time someone ever asked me that ( I resisted the urge to roll my eyes)

I said, just think of a sewing machine needle stitching thread into the fabric…Haha the look on their face. 😝

Seriously though, of course there’s pain.

There is a level you just get comfortable with and then there are areas that you definitely take yourself to another zone and just breathe through it. Weirdly, there are times I look forward to the pain.

I’d have to say with this piece, being about 4 hours in the chair, the shading of black was the most intense.

This literally feels like someone using little razor blades to dig into my skin…over and over..

Yeah the arm starts feeling a little raw. It’s especially fun when the hot sun hits it.

How long does it take to heal?

After finishing my arm got wrapped in something akin to plastic wrap. I’m wondering why this stuff can’t be used for my kitchen bowls 😝

This keeps it clean and protected. I’m supposed to wear it 3-6 days.

Here it is at day three. I’m ready to take it off.

No my art work hasn’t smeared, it’s just extra ink oozing under plastic. Can you see the tiny lace details though? It amazes me she could do such tiny work.

Once plastic comes off it’s washed and cleaned several times a day. Washing it feels.. delightful.

Raw open skin with dial soap on it 😱

It will begin to heal as it dries and then it goes through the awesome itchy phase in which you attempt to not scratch. A few weeks out it’s 100% again

What made you do it?

Why not? The pieces on my arm were specific, intentional, and have meaning to me. I wanted to fill between them with the end result looking like a vintage type lacey sleeve. I have a small area on the back of my arm yet to do that will complete it.

Beside all that, it’s been a wonderful way to wear creative art that belongs to just me.

I think that’s uber cool and I’m privileged to wear someone’s art.

What about when you get old?

Uh. I am old. Next question.

Seriously, I am way old enough to know what I want, what I like, and do what I wanna do.

Have you regretted it?

No.

Do you want more?

Is the Pope Catholic?

When I got my first one it was a flower bracelet with the word strength in it. This was such an important life word for me that I wanted it on me in a visual way. I had thought to get that and I’d be done. (Fyi, the wrist is one of the most painful places…)

Not true. Less than a day later I was plotting my next.

I still have creative ideas in my head πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‰

I was warned by those who had gone before me…”you’ll want more”…. I didn’t believe them…now I know better.

What if your kids got them?

Ha. My kids encouraged me and own quite a few of their own. My son jokingly gave me a list of “girl tattoos” that I should not ever get lest I lose cool status. These included standard quo things like a flower or dolphin on my ankle or inside my wrist, anything tribal (as if!) Or any tattoo in a shop where you select them by numbers.

A final thought

Spending hours in a chair gave me plenty of time to chat with the young artist working on me. She discussed her struggles at trying to open her business in our town and how she had been told at one city meeting by someone that they didn’t want “those kind of people” around. Ha like wow.

I forget, or rather I’m surprised, at the harsh and judgmental attitudes people still carry in regards to this topic. But those personal opinions are there and firmly in place even though I find them a bit dated.

To each their own.

I’ve just learned you can’t or shouldn’t judge a book by its cover and some of the most authentic,interesting, creative people I’ve ever met have had tattoos.

Your turn. Do you have any? If so, any stories with them? If not, do you want one but haven’t? Or are you in the “thanks but no thanks” camp? It’s cool if you are πŸ˜‰

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Birthday Reflections

And just like that, it’s time to celebrate another birthday.

Is it me, or does time really ( seem) to move faster as you get older?

Gone are the days where the only concern was how much play time you had or which friends were available to hang out. Lazy summers and no cares in the world.

Those times in our lives seem rather fleeting don’t they?

But wait. Hang with me.

This isn’t a sappy post, but one I more enjoy doing as a way of reflection on the year gone by.

It gives me opportunity to see areas of growth and areas I need to shape up more.

I’m smack in the mid 50s now.

#50ish

Go me.

I get Aarp fliers in the mail and am close to qualifying for discounts in some places.

Yes.

Yes I will shamelessly work my age to save a few bucks 🀣

I go for my yearly doctor visits and the little 20 something girl checking me in acts surprised I don’t have a bag of meds with me.

Ah well. Whatever.

Age is merely a number that I’ve never allowed to define me.

Have you ever noticed though, how people do? And boy, do some people get bent out of shape when you don’t stay in the box and play by all the same old and tired “rules”.

**yawn** what’s a box?

Like at certain ages there are expected normal behaviors because you’re “that age.”

Listen, I have no problem diving onto a swing and flying through the air when I’m with the grand babies at the park or any other unadultish shenanigans.

The expectation of society is as you get older you should lay things aside, and uh, “act your age”.

Whatever that means.

Just be quiet and fade away…not likely.

So here I am grateful for another year to live, move, and breathe in this beautiful gift we have called life.

Wisdom

I have to laugh as I hear so many of my young friends bemoaning the fact that they are only a couple years from….30.

It does amuse me ’cause I’m well to the other side of that and I know that life is still good, better even, and really it’s ok.

I enjoyed all the decades behind me but I long for none of them. Each one was a season in my life. A season to learn and grow. To gain wisdom and a wee bit of maturity πŸ˜‰

It is now, sitting in the middle of another decade, that I can reflect how each one was a working out of the woman I am.

Good times, bad times, hard and easy, frustrations and joys, light and dark, every single season was shaping me.

Wisdom is a gift I greatly appreciate and I can see it more clearly now that ever.

Comfortable in the skin I live in

I have always been comfortable in my existence. But getting older has only solidified that.

I’m good with myself.

I don’t say that in an egotistical way, just a fact. To be comfortable with who you are, the very essence of who you are, is freedom.

It means being ok with your good stuff and not so good stuff. It’s knowing I’m not perfect but strive to be the best I can be. I try to remain open and teachable.

It’s also accepting every part of my physical self and never, ever comparing myself to someone else. To do so only would breed dissatisfaction and be an affront to my Maker.

There is only one of me. I will appreciate the gift of that.

No approval needed.

I don’t need approval to be me….and same goes for you. By that I mean at this stage of my life, I know who I am.

I know what I like and what I don’t like. I know what makes my heart sing and what weighs it down. I know how to speak up when I need to in being able to express myself, how I think or feel,or to nicely say no thank you to something.

I know how to stand up and own who I am ( and I don’t mean in a rude or disrespectful way) I know who I am.

It’s not worrying about others or their personal opinions. It’s not being concerned if someone approves or disapproves based on what they would or wouldn’t do.

This past year I’ve…….

Experienced alot of things. Lots of ordinary life stuff, but also bigger events that have challenged me.

I started my fifth year with this blog. It’s been an outlet in writing but my main goal is to keep offering sensible, sane, realistic lifestyle and fitness encouragement and help. I’m blessed by all of you who take the time to read, comment, and offer words of encouragement back to me. I’ve slowly built my own brand as Sassyfitnesschick and plan to keep offering my own flavor of health and fitness tips, all with a side dish of sass πŸ˜‰

I trained for, and finished my second duathlon. I also again, took first in my age group. I cannot tell you what a challenging yet fulfilling event this was for me. The training as much as the cold,rainy, miserable race day all shaped me in a different way.

I learned more about resilience,tenacity and a whole lotta stubbornness in me.

Ok…well.. the stubbornness is nothing new πŸ˜‰

I recently was talking to hubby about something and I said ” I don’t quit” to which from behind his glasses and iPad I get a snort followed by “realllyy??”

And then…”Well that’s not a bad thing”

And I don’t. I jump into the deep end with anything I do and I give it my all.

This month marks my one year anniversary since I started my little vintage business last year. When I jumped in I thought I’d try a few months and see how it went. Before I knew it I had hit the 6 month mark. Spring time I moved into a bigger space ( and bigger rent) yet somehow each month it seemed I was to keep going.

Last month when I was notified the lease on building wasnt being renewed and I’d have to either uproot and move elsewhere or just fold it all up and…quit…well that just wasn’t an option. And then there was a perfect space just waiting for me…and now I’m in and settled and can hardly wait to see how this year unfolds.

As a writer, who has a blog, it’s hard for me to not observe people. As a very social creature it’s quite easy for me to interact with just about anyone. This year I’ve met some interesting people, and not always people who look “normal”. By that I mean they are colorful in their clothing choices,word choices,art work on their bodies or offbeat fashion style, not to mention colorful personalities. I find that refreshing. I love how they are good at pushing back against the norm. Long ago, when my oldest was in a rock band, I learned not to judge books by their covers.

My home could often be filled with big men in all black, wearing tons of makeup, plenty of piercings and other non- main stream looks. Yet under it all were sweet guys who loved raiding my cookie jar. Being reminded of those truths makes it quite easy for me to appreciate those who march to the beat of their own drum.

That’s how life works right?

Day by day it unfolds full of the daily norm, the unexpected, the high’s and low’s and if we look for it, plenty of joys too.

The unfolding of this last year has shown me ( more than ever) that I really can do anything. I’ve learned so much more about mental discipline. It’s the strength and unwillingness to quit which spills out into everything I do.

New challenges can be hard and I strive too let them to do the work of making me stronger. I’m facing some now and am trying to remind myself of this.

Getting older isn’t some horrible thing.

Some will never have the chance to experience it.

What’s horrible is remaining unchanged, unyielding, holding onto grudges, judging, poor behaviors, or personal slights, refusing to see different view points or being unwilling to listen to how another person sees something. It’s horrible to age and still hold onto things that should’ve been let go of a long time ago. In my opinion those things are far worse than getting older.

I think age really, is a huge state of mind. I believe how we view it impacts how out loud we live all our days.

My goal is to do it gracefully, to love well, to continue to be open and teachable, to learn and grow from this ride called life, and most of all, never, ever quit.

Cheers to a new year!

Monday Musings

Monday. Am I the only one lurching into it after a long 4th of July weekend ?? Here in the states we just celebrated our nation’s birthday….our 243rd one to be exact.

Yeah we celebrated with a four day weekend 🀣

I may be biased, but I believe we live in the greatest nation.

Yes, it has problems, but we are still blessed beyond measure with the gifts and freedoms we have.

So we celebrated our freedoms and all that we’ve been blessed with…food, fireworks and hanging with family.

Long weekends equal productivity

Having a block of days home let me dive into the deep end on furniture projects waiting for me.

Does this count as athletic activities? πŸ€”

I mentioned last week I had moved into my new location for my business. I had lots that sold so I was trying to replenish items.

I finished off an antique dresser, four chairs, and some small items too.

I love getting things done!

I’m super excited over how the dresser came out.

Here’s its before pic…

Old, tired and needing a new look.

I kept it simple and it looks so fresh now.

I’m pretty happy with it. The light distressing gives it the aged look it deserves.

Then.. last week I scooped up these antique chairs at the thrift store.

Yeah. I know you’re loving the cheetah print 😏

Cheetah? Leopard? Your call.

Check out the new look I gave them….

Miss the cheetah print yet?

I got this cool chair at an estate sale months ago. I finally got to let the ideas out of my head for it…

Its boring before pic…

Look at it now πŸ™‚

And my final chair. An old harp back and after all my black I wanted to do a bright fun look….

And besides all that, I’ve been working on the room my daughter recently vacated.

Hubby was a trooper and installed new, cooler,molding on the floor and I’ll be painting this week

Then as mentioned previously, the entire antique bedroom set I have in my barn finally has a room to come to 😁

No.

No I haven’t been busy….which is why I’m writing this at 11p m Sunday night..

Oh..and I don’t sell everything…I mean what’s the point of having a fun business if you don’t get to keep some of the goodies??

For instance, I got this super cool old coffee table. It’s over 6’0 long! It has leaves that when open you could use as a table top.

I don’t exaggerate.

Me asking the girl about it.

“Oh, idk, I think it’s from the 50s. I’m selling the stuff for a dead person.”

Me: “whaattt?”

Haha…well she only wanted 12.00 for this solid wood beast so I didn’t waste any time grabbing it up.

Now to decide how exactly I want to spruce it up.

Furniture isn’t the only thing I’ve been lifting

I’ve been adding more strength training days to my week.

Hello sweaty Sunday 🀣

I have a love hate relationship with deadlifts.

I love knowing I can lift some solid weight, I know it’s also gonna be a little work.

I usually do three sets of 6 at my current weight of 165. I’m fixing to add on to that soon.

My 25lb dumb bells have become quite easy to handle. I’ve added more reps on the mix.

I got to thinking when I first started off a few years back I was using 8lbs

8.

Now I can toss 25s around and use a 35 lb kettlebell for swings and other fun moves.

Consistent work is all I can contribute it to

Well…anyone who wants to make progress needs to stay consistent.

Oh. And hard work too 😏

And finally…

Would it be a Monday post if I didn’t offer you up some tasty food I had experimented with???

This is uh…not on the healthy treats list.. but it’s chocolate sooooo….

I made this for the 4th celebrations.

It was devoured.

Trust me, you’ll love it and it’s super easy to make.

https://pin.it/mx5cz3fwji5mty

That’s a wrap boys and girls. Tell me about your week and any summer celebrations you’ve got going on.

Monday Musings

Happy Monday you crazy kids! I don’t know about you but I’m hitting the floor today with a smile and a mile long to do list!

This past weekend was busy as I was preparing to move my little vintage business to a new location. The new place isn’t that far away but moving is always, well, moving right?

You still have to pack it up and drag it to the new destination.

Oh. And rain.

Yes, let’s add rain to the mix for a little extra fun. ( Insert sarcasm here πŸ˜‰ )

I was pretty happy with the month in sales…lots of stuff went to new homes so it means I gotta get going on some new projects.

Thankfully my barn has plenty waiting for me.

Seriously though, I’m so grateful for new opportunities and can hardly wait to see how this next part of the adventure unfolds.

Sunday afternoon I got my new space all set up and Monday will find me at the shop entering all my inventory in the computer.

It’s hard to believe that July marks my one year “officially” doing this.

A year of doing this messy, fun, challenging, and extremely creative work. I’ve learned to do so many things I never knew how to do.

Thankfully I have a “jump in the deep end” personality so it’s never crossed my mind I couldn’t fix up some horrible, ratty, falling apart piece of furniture. It kinda comes naturally to me.

It has been the most unexpected, satisfying work.

Speaking of work….

I love that summer mornings get light out pretty early allowing me to get on the road for some miles while the sun comes up on me.

Did I mention though, our county decided to “pave” our little country roads? This amounts to pouring out hot tar, and then covering it with small stones and rolling over it a few times.

It is then expected the usual traffic will pack it down. The bad part is that all the loose stone where cars don’t drive gets pushed into areas and that can make for some, exhilarating ? Moments on the bike if you hit one of those patches.

Curves and cul de sacs I used to ride into like a wild woman, well, I have to be a little more cautious on….. for right now πŸ˜‰

In the ways of athletic shenanigans….

More than once this week I’ve been reminded of the payoffs for my strength training days. I’m more than capable of helping lift various pieces of equipment at my sons shop….me offering to help unload something from a truck…ha…

Surprised looking man “Oh you’re going to help me?”

Me: indeed I am.

I’m always amused at the usual expectations that because I’m a female I’m not equipped to handle heavy things .

Now I jokingly quip I don’t just have muscles for decoration haha

I helped move a big china cabinet out of my shop yesterday that I sold. I felt like I handled it better than the guy on the other end πŸ˜‰

Seriously though, you get stronger by using your body. Practicing functional movements and lifting heavy things transfers over into real life by being able to handle all the day to day things you may deal with.

In addition to all that….it’s empowering to be strong.

And today starts a new month…..

Not just any month, July. All things summer and our nation’s birthday month and yours truly as well.

It will be time for another birthday post so stay tuned for that πŸ˜‰

Speaking of the United States birthday. My kids have been pleading with me to whip up my homemade strawberry ice cream.

This is like seriously the most amazing treat ever. It will not be on my healthy eating tips post Haha

It is made with nothing but heavy cream, buckets of sweet, juicy bright red strawberries, and uh, sugar.

You let it churn for quite awhile in the old ice cream maker ( electric of course) although I’ve entertained my kids with stories “back in the day” where we had to hand crank that thing for eternity before we were rewarded with actual ice cream.

Did you ever get that experience??

Homemade ice cream is one of those quintessential summer treats for sure.

It will also be accompanied by hot dogs off the grill topped with various condiments, along with tasty side dishes to keep them company.

The night will be topped off perched on a blanket, watching spectacular fireworks while that delicious ice cream drips off my chin or runs down my arm cause that stuff gets messy.

But I ask you, is there a better way to end a celebratory day than hanging with people you love and eating tasty food?

I think not.

If you’ll be celebrating the 4th, what treats do you enjoy? What are some if your favorite summer foods?

Saturday Snippets

Have you noticed when it comes to topics like health, fitness, eating, especially eating!losing weight, etc our world has massively complicated these processes that shouldn’t really be ..wellll….. so complicated?

I’ve observed that a lot this past week stalking some snake oil “health ” pages ( hahahaha did I just admit to stalking??)

In all honesty I do it to gather facts, educate myself, and to hopefully educate others.

Anyway I digress…

I observe lots of things and it made me wonder why people seem to want to make it harder than it has to be.

Why does it have to be a “feel the burn and hurt” workout each time ( don’t do that anyway!)

Why does it have to be “lose 10 lbs in a week!” Which really isn’t fat but water weight mostly ( completely unrealistic and even if you did, I wanna see your loses 6 weeks out) anyway, you didn’t gain 10 in a week so why would you lose that fast? And what are you eating? Are you starving yourself?

Or diets that involve severe restriction and deprivation, cutting food groups or demonizing certain foods, instead of moderate eating of healthy and nutritious foods?

Or man made fake detoxes, fat burners, cleanses or fake “diet” foods and other ridiculous nonsense? ( none of which you need I may add)

I guess the bottom line is people are willing to grasp (and pay highly for) at anything except the main real plan which will give them permanent and long term success.

It seems too easy to just do the simple things……moderate, balanced eating of all food groups, plenty of water, adequate purposeful exercise, good rest, some treats thrown in for fun, and slow steady weight loss of 1-2 lbs a week and then doing it day after day.

It’s too much to believe that the simple things, done with consistency, and a steadfastness will really lead to long term results known otherwise as a lifestyle change.

Yet when all the fad diets, cleanses, quick fixes, hyped up and costly programs quickly fail it will be the simple things that last and lead to success, once and for all.

Slow and steady wins the race my friends.

Non Diet Tips For A Healthy Lifestyle

Often when the topic of weight loss and a healthy lifestyle comes up, there are certain things that may come to mind.

Being hungry.

Deprivation. ( ohhh that MUST go with weight loss!)

Following rigid plans.

Following rigid plans for a number of weeks or months before getting back to “normal”.

Excessive exercise.

Cutting out all foods you love that bring you joy.

The list can go on. Can you add to it?

So often in a quest for a healthier lifestyle people overlook other areas that are more than “diet related” to being healthy and living a healthy lifestyle.

Let’s look at a few areas that can contribute to the overall success of a healthy lifestyle.

Rest.

We live in a world that promotes constant work and productivity. Often we sacrifice rest in the pursuit of busyness.

Yours truly can be just as bad.

I’m a night owl by nature but try to respect that my alarm still goes off a 6 a.m. no matter what time my head hits the pillow.

If there’s one thing being athletic has taught me, it’s the value of rest. Our bodies heal and repair in this time and honestly if I want to feel like I’m doing my best in my days quality rest is just as important as eating quality foods.

Don’t short yourself on rest time.

Get in outdoor time

It’s no secret that being outdoors is my jam. I will hands down, take a solid workout flying down the road on my bike, running or walking, over working out inside. It’s not just the exercise, but being out in the elements that makes me feel good. It clears my mind and feeds me mentally.

Being outdoors has wonderful therapeutic benefits. Make sure you get out not just for your physical self, but your mental self too.

Don’t cut out foods that you love

You know why so many people don’t last on structured, restrictive diets? Because they have a misguided idea they have to cut out all the things they enjoy.

Supposedly being on a diet means you have to suffer, do without, and be miserable to lose weight.

No. No you don’t.

In fact you have a higher chance of success if you allow your favorite things into your nutrition plan

You can still lose weight while building in foods you love. Doing so will keep you from binging or giving up because you feel deprived.

Remember to treat yourself

Really. Get a pedi. Have that special coffee treat. Buy that cute dress ( or shirt!)

Do the thing that makes you happy.

Treats are those non-essential things in life that make life fun. Give yourself permission to do an occasional treat.

Spend time with those who matter

Pretty self explanatory right? Physically we’re designed for relationships.. they give us a wholeness and completeness in our lives. Family and friends not only love us but can be our support system as we work towards a healthier, more fit lifestyle.

Keep these non-diet tips in mind to help you reach your health and fitness goals.

Would you add anything to this list?

Spotlight on Tomatoes

Summer is rapidly approaching here in Texas. Last weekend we rocked the ridiculous temps over 100, and closer to 110 with the heat index.

It was so sweltering it almost took your breath away.

With the arrival of summer there are some fruits and veggies that seem to just be a part of the season.

Tomatoes top that list.

Is there anything better than a warm, vine ripened tomato sliced with some salt and pepper? I could eat more than my share 😁

So as a nod to delicious summer food I thought the tomato would be a good one for our food spotlight post.

The 411

The tomato is from the nightshade family native to South America.

Despite botanically being a fruit, it’s generally eaten and prepared like a vegetable.

Tomatoes are the major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer.

They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K.

Some nutrition facts

The water content of tomatoes is around 95%. The other 5% consists mainly of carbs and fiber.

Here are the nutrients in a small raw tomato:

  • Calories: 18
  • Water: 95%
  • Protein: 0.9 grams
  • Carbs: 3.9 grams
  • Sugar: 2.6 grams
  • Fiber: 1.2 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams

Carbs comprise 4% of raw tomatoes, which amounts to fewer than 5 grams of carbs for a medium one.

Simple sugars,such as glucose and fructose, make up almost 70% of the carb content.

Other plant compounds

The main plant compounds in tomatoes are:

  • Lycopene. A red pigment and antioxidant, lycopene has been extensively studied for its beneficial health effects.
  • Beta carotene. An antioxidant that often gives foods a yellow or orange hue, beta carotene is converted into vitamin A in your body.
  • Naringenin. Found in tomato skin, this flavonoid has been shown to to decrease inflammation protect against various diseases in mice.
  • Chlorogenic acid. A powerful antioxidant compound, chlorogenic acid may lower blood pressure in people with elevated levels.

Studies show that tomatoes and tomato products may reduce your risk of heart disease and several cancers. This fruit is also beneficial for skin health, as it may protect against sunburns.

So now that we’ve discussed how good they are for you….

How about a few recipes? Tomatoes by themselves are perfect. I also love tossing them in some olive oil and roasting with asparagus.

Cherry tomatoes are also good in my veggie scramble for breakfast.

As mentioned earlier, they also make perfect light dishes when the days get long and warm.

https://pin.it/jo45ey6w64arnv

https://pin.it/7g6t56mrcvhrj4

https://pin.it/x23cek5gadiep7

By the way….I made the rustic Italian cucumber and tomato salad for dinner last night…it is definitely a keeper.

Tell me, do you have any favorite tomato recipes?