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Saturday, May 23, 2009

A Pieces of April Contest

This is the first ever Pieces of April contest! I want something from you and I have some amazing prizes to offer in return.

To be entered in the drawing, all you have to do is leave a comment on this blog (not facebook) to answer one of the questions below. One entry per person, unless you qualify for the bonus below. There will be 3 winners, chosen at random, that I'll announce on June 18th.

First, the prizes:

1. An Ecosytem made by the cutting-edge company Libby Green. This is a set of 3 reusable totes that fit inside of each other to fold flat for storage. Great for the grocery store, but useful everywhere. I own several and my world wouldn't be the same without them!

2. A $25 emailed gift certificate to (right now, this will buy a 3 month membership).
3. A $10 emailed gift certificate, for online purchases.

Second, choose a question to answer:

- If you enjoy reading, what is your favorite genre and/or author and why?

- If you don't enjoy reading, have you ever crossed a book/article/author that made the experience a little less painful?

In your comment be sure to leave an identifying name of some sort. If you want to be anonymous, be sure I have a way to announce you as a winner. Let me know your thoughts - all friends & family are welcome to participate. I appreciate everyone's feedback!

****Bonus****If you refer a friend to this contest and they mention your name (the same name you used in your comment), you get another entry!

Remember to check back on June 18th to see the winners - and instructions on claiming your prize.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Disney Castles

Did you ever want to do something that seemed impossible? Have you ever wanted to accomplish something that seemed too big - - unattainable? How about wanting to lose weight that seems to never go away? We've probably all heard the famous quote from Lao Tzu, who said, "The journey of 1,ooo miles begins with a single step." While so very true, what brings us to take the step and what helps us to keep stepping?

While reading the book Between the Trapezes by Gail Blanke, I discovered something amazing that I didn't know while I was at
Disneyland last week. Gail said that when Walt was building the theme parks, he ordered the construction crews to build the castles first. He knew that when the crews were digging and plumbing and sweating and dealing with the dirtiest parts of their jobs, they could easily look up and focus on the castle. The castle represented the vision, the dream and the magic that they were working to create.

We have to put our dreams out there. Put it some place where you can see it when things get rough. Put your goal weight on a sticky note and put it over the number on your scale. When you step on it, you see your goals achieved. Make a business card that has your desired title on it and carry it around with you. A friend of mine designed her own book cover of her unpublished (now published) book and gave it a prominent place while writing. When I was in the middle of my weight loss journey, I wrote my Success story and made it look like one out of the Weight Watchers Magazine.

What is your castle? Where is your castle? Can you see it when achieving your dreams gets frustrating and difficult? When the job offer goes to someone else? When the hoped-for baby doesn't come? When passion is the last thing on your mind? When creativity escapes you? When tears are the only thing in abundance?

Where is your castle? Imagine it, see it, build it, focus on it. Magic will come.

A few quotes from Walt that has inspired me, from a man whose dreams changed the world....

"Mickey Mouse popped out of my mind onto a drawing pad 20 years ago on a train ride from Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner."

"I first saw the site for Disneyland back in 1953. In those days it was all flat land - no rivers, no mountains, no castles or rocket ships - just orange groves, and a few acres of walnut trees."

"We did it {Disneyland}, in the knowledge that most of the people I talked to thought it would be a financial disaster - closed and forgotten within the first year."

"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing."

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them."

"If you can dream it, you can do it."

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible."

"The more you like yourself, the less you are like anyone else, which makes you unique."

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Story of FabLeeUs.

I love all of the WW members that attend the Saturday morning meetings with me, but one of my favorite people there is Gail. She had lost 100 pounds before I started going to that meeting. A tip that she got from another member helped her get to goal. That tip (that she still practices) is, first thing in the morning, she looks at herself in the mirror and, out loud, says, "You look fabulous!"

I have to be honest, while I talk to myself often, talking to myself in the mirror and being so complimentary of myself, was a bit unnerving. But I started anyway, serious bed-head, bad breath and all. I felt silly, but I figured I had nothing to lose.

Then, my 5 year old son was having a bad day (as bad as a his carefree days can get). I took him by his little shoulders and, with much conviction, said, "You. Look. Fabulous." His eyes lit up, he smiled and sheepishly said thank you. I realized that is what the self-conscience kid in me does every time I say that to her. So I began again with much more insight into what I was actually accomplishing.

Even in the best of times, though, one can get discouraged. About a week later, I was the one having a rough day. My son stopped what he was doing, walked over to me and boldly announced, "Mommy, you look FabLeeUs!" Do I even have to say that my day got a whole lot better?

So, let's be FabLeeUs together today, no matter how silly we feel!