Motivational Monday: Take A Walk


I have been trying to get a walk in every day since the first of the year often that has not happened. I stay up late, sleep in, and then I just feel unmotivated. So last night I had to talk myself into going to bed early with the intention of getting up early to go for a walk. My plan was to get up  between 7:00 and 7:30am. Then I would get ready and go for a walk. First thing was to check the weather. We are still in Winter and I wanted to make sure the temps would be safe for me to go walking. 31 is not a bad temp. I can bundle up. Also it will motivate me to keep going to stay warm. The intent also was to walk 3 laps at the fitness trail maybe more if I felt up to it.

So I went to bed at around 11:30pm. That is not normal for me. I am usually up to 2:00 or 3:00am. However, I wanted to get started with better sleep habits too. My normal morning routine is to get up, have a cup of tea, get on my computer for a half hour, shower, and get ready for the day. This morning it was up, get ready, go for a walk, then come home, and shower. At  least that was the plan. I had thought it through. I was ready to go for a walk. Ready to face the new routine. As I fell asleep talking to God I felt confident that I could do this.

At the start of this weight loss journey I weighed 270 lbs. That is 110 lbs more than I weighed at age 17. I am now 40 and it is getting harder to shed the weight. I have struggled with weight since 5th grade. I have tried for years to get the weight off, but nothing worked. Well, except stress. When I was stressed out I would not eat and I would sleep a lot. I seemed to loose more weight that way.

So after a late start (5:00pm) I went for a walk. I had woken up with sinus issues that I had to deal with before I could go for a walk. It was cold out, but not as cold as I thought. It takes 2 1/2 laps at the trail to reach a mile. I usually do 3 so I have over 1 mile under my belt. I push myself to walk without stopping. Every so often along the trail there is benches to sit at. I try not to sit down. I pace myself and remind myself that I can do this. After 3 laps I was done. I could not do more and that is ok. I need to work up to more laps.

Walking is very theraputic. It is a great way to relieve stress in life. It is a great way to keep in shape. I also have found that the more that I walk the better my joint feel. I have had bad knee pain and since I started walking that is gone. I have more energy and I also feel great.

I encourage you to go take a walk. Find a place that you can go walking at. Then set a routine. Decide how long you want to walk. You don’t have to walk everyday, but you can. Walk when you can. Walk alone or with someone else. It is great. You will feel so good for it. I know that I do.

For me this is a lifestyle change. I want to loose weight. I know if I keep this up that I will have kept off a few pounds by Summer. That is good for me.

Fact: For every pound that you loose you loose 4 pounds of pressure from your knees and 6 lbs of pressure from your hips. That is awesome.

In one month I have lost 10 lbs. I feel good. I am on the road to weight loss. I am not when I want to be yet, but I am getting to where I am going. It is a long road, but I am glad that I am on it.




Several years ago Rev. Lee McDermott gave a sermon about Forgiveness. In the sermon he talked about how if we are hurt we need to forgive those that hurt us in order to heal and move forward. It does not absolve them of the wrong. However, it does make the pain less for you. You have wiped the slate clean.

This sermon came at a time when I was dealing with an issue of forgiveness of my own. At the time there was a family that came to my church to which the mother and I were great friends. Then suddenly things on her part changed. We drifted apart. She became distant. Then at church problems arose. I was being blamed for things that were not my fault at all. People in church were taking her side of things never once listening to what I had to say.

Then came a time when Rev. Lee was asked to mediate between us because some in the church were tired of the way I was treating my former friend. We sat down to talk. My former friend went first. Then those that were accusing me went next. Then when it was my turn I was interrupted many  times. I finally walked out. Rev. Lee asked me to come back. He told everyone to stop talking and let me speak. After it was all said and done Rev. Lee gave his opinion on things. The outcome as I recall was not what the other party would have liked. It was said that I did nothing wrong and that the wrong was on my former friend. That she took things to personal.

It took me awhile after that, but I found the will to forgive my former friend. I placed her in God’s hands. I remember telling God that I knew that she would never ask me for forgiveness, but that I was going to forgive her anyway. I needed to do it for me so that I could move on in life.

This is often what happens. We find ourselves getting upset over something that happened to us. A wrong we think that occurred on us. Never realizing that we are the ones in the wrong. That we need to put a period on the situation before it gets out of control. If it ends up being that we are the victims of this then we just need to forgive those that wronged us and move on. Be the bigger person.

Forgiveness is all about sharing the love of God. When we forgive someone that wrongs us we let go of the hurt and let God’s love shine through. We are the bigger person in the situation. We can forgive, but we will never forget what happened.

So the next time that someone wrongs you take my advice. Just forgive them and move on. You will feel so much better for it.

In My Opinion: Severide

Let me start by saying that I know full well that Chicago Fire is just a TV show and that Kelly Severide is just a character played by Taylor Kinney. That being said this is just my opinion on a few things when it comes to Kelly Severide on Chicago Fire. This comes after reading recent comments on social media that upset me. I know that fans of the show and of Taylor Kinney’s Severide have the right to their opinion which I deeply respect. However, this post here is MY OPINION of what I think. Not everyone has to agree with me on this. I just want to express my opinion.

Let me also say something else. It is easy for us as fans to get wrapped up the story lines of our favorite shows as though we are a part of them. We can often get too involved in the show and in that way hope that what we want to happen with our favorite characters does in the end. We often get mad with the directions of how the show goes. This is the right of every fan of every show. It is just how it works.

Background on Kelly Severide:

As I stated before he is a fictional character on the NBC drama Chicago Fire. As his shift’s lieutenant at Firehouse 51, Severide is the leader of Rescue Squad 3. Severide is portrayed by actor Taylor Kinney. Severide first came to the show in the pilot episode.

Severide was married once to Brittany Baker, but that marriage was very brief. He was engaged to Renee Whaley, dated: Renee Royce, Erin Lindsay, Jamie, Killian, and Anna Turner (she passed away), had a fling with April Sexton, and is currently dating Stella Kidd.

Severide grew up in the Chicago Fire Department because his father, Benny Severide was the CFD Captain for a time. Kelly, was raised singlehandedly by this mother, Jennifer Sheridan after Benny left the family when Kelly was in elementary school. Kelly reconnected with his father and they still had a love-hate relationship. Those higher up in CFD refer to Kelly as Benny’s son.

Severide graduated at the top of his class at the academy and held the record for the youngest firefighter to make squad when he was 23 years old. He and Matt Casey of Truck 81 had been friends since their days at the fire academy.

Kelly’s charismatic personality makes him a popular figure with both his colleagues and the ladies. He tends to keep his private problems to himself and lets it simmer, which often worries the chief. He has a knack for reading people which had been good at helping him solve cases and help people over the 8 seasons. In season 8 he did a short sent at Office of Fire Investigation.

A recurring theme with Severide is his merry-go-round of relationships and flings with various women. Severide was engages to Renee Whaley, but they called it off after she cheated on him with and ex-boyfriend.

Midway through Season 1 Severide is in a relationship with Renee Royce. She asks him to relocate with her to Spain, he is about to do so, but ultimately decides to stay in Chicago. At the end of the season Royce returns pregnant. Severide is told that due to the timeline this baby most likely is not his. Royce confesses that the baby is not his and they part ways again.

Severide dated Detective Erin Lindsay. Severide isolates himself after the death of Shay. Lindsay breaks up with him after he misses another date telling him that while she can empathize with him, she can’t “be the girl sitting alone in a restaurant waiting for him.”

Season 3 Severide takes a trip to Las Vegas and meets Brittany Baker. They marry and she move in with Severide. Homesick, Brittany finally leaves Chicago, unable to get used to the uncertainty and irregular hours Severide’s job as a firefighter entails.

The ne has a romantic interest in April Sexton. They have known each other since they were teens as her parents took Severide in when he was going through a rebellious phase in high school. He formally askes her out on a date. However, they later break up as April enters a relationship with another man.

In Season 5 Severide has romantic ideas about Anna. She is a pediatrician at Springfield Hospital. After saving her life by donating bone marrow, Severide visits Springfield after getting an offer from Springfield Fire Department to become battalion chief. He turns it down. Anna moves to Chicago, in order to be close to Severide. When she gets cold feet over moving there, he takes her around the city in particularly, taking her skating. But when Severide’s father shows up unannounced and with his girlfriend, and crashes Severide’s date with Anna. Anna leaves to get a cab. She gets in the cab and reveals that her parents didn’t want her to move away nor stay in the relationship with Severide. Later Severide discovers that Anna has complications with cancer and that prompted her to break up with him. Anna’s father, who visits Severide in hos office, asks Severide to not give up on Anna. Severide carries Anna to the hospital for chemotherapy. Anna dies when the chemotherapy and other methods don’t work and it is revealed that she signed a DNR order, leaving Severide to cope with her death.

In Season 6 is were Severide ends up with fellow firefighter Stella Kidd. At the end of the season Severide ends up kissing Kidd (whom he previously had a romantic fling with) in Molly’s when it was closing for the night. After learning about his failed relationships Kidd reconsiders her living arrangement with Kelly by living in Herrmann’s attic.

During an intense fire at an apartment complex, Stella was severely injures after she ran out of oxygen. She was trying to help Severide and she didn’t tell Herman when her levels dropped and ended up at Chicago Med in critical condition. Severide lashes out at Hermann for not looking out for her and Hermann said she was trying to save him which is why she didn’t say anything.  Connor Rhodes and Ethan Choi informed Severide they would have to remove part of Stella’s lung to save her. Severide disagreed and said being a firefighter was important to Stella and she wouldn’t want that. He was told the wasn’t family so he couldn’t vet the decision. Ethan even escorted Kelly out of the hospital when he argued, much to April’s dismay. April then arranged for the rest of the firehouse to ask Connor to reconsider on Stella’s behalf, as they were “family”. Ethan wasn’t happy with this ad accused April of doing that for Severide not Stella.

After his father died, Severide and Stella’s relationship became strained and her distances himself from her. Severide becomes jealous of Stella’s friend causing even more of a strain on their relationship. Stella breaks up with Severide, stating that she had already been the lifeline of a man who was having a breakdown and that she could not go through that again. They get back together where Severide says that she deserves someone better, and he was going to be that someone.

My Opinion:

Severide is a very sexy man. He has the most amazing eyes and smile. He is the sole reason that I watch the show. Yes, I get very vocal with the tv when it comes to Severide. All part of being a fan.

I was not to happy when they sent Severide to the Office of Fire Investigation. Thank the Lord that that was short lived. I could not take him not being a part of Firehouse 51. He fits in so well and is such a big part of it. It just seemed like they were lost without him there.

I also think that of all the women that have come in and out of his life Severide has only loved Anna truly.  To give her a part of himself to save her was real love in itself. The emotion that he showed when she died showed that he loved her very deeply.

Now let me get to Stella Kidd. I take issue with her from the get go. I feel she is bossy, opinionated, pushy, has to always be right, never listens, and is hot headed to name a few. She needs to move on and let Severide find someone that is better for him. They just don’t have the chemistry this time around. She is a distraction to Severide. I get it that she loves him, but not enough to let him be himself.  She is so lucky to be dating Severide. Lots of women would jump at the chance to be with him (me included).

I mean she jumped his case when he did not go with Joe to the club. What business of her’s was that? NONE!!!! Severide was still working and he apologized to Joe later who understood cause it was the nature of the job. Stella also stuck her nose in about Severide helping with the wedding planning. Hey Stella, the wedding planning is not Severide’s job. What is his job is the bachelor party. Joe and Chloe need to plan the main part of the wedding cause it is their day.

Fact of the matter is I think Stella was trying to hint to Severide that she is ready to move forward down the isle with him. Which makes me believe that she is moving this relationship faster than Severide wants. He needs to take things slow to make sure that they are going to work. I mean look at how many times she has already given up on him. She moved out of his apartment after learning about his past that she could not live with, she gets pissed after Severide is jealous of Stella’s friend who was obviously trying to have a relationship with her, and broke up with him after his father died because she could not go through being with another man that was going through a breakdown.  I mean Severide had to basically give her the opportunity to come back to him.

He has worked so hard to keep them together that really it is not worth it. I mean every time Severide takes a step forward Stella takes a step back. She is not committed to this relationship. Everytime he pulls her towards him she ends up pushing him away.

I read so often that they have chemistry. Yes, in the beginning when it was a fling they did. Now it is a push and pull thing. He pulls and she pushes. Not a relationship that I want to be in. If I were Severide I would dump her and move on. He is clearly not happy. He is settling for the familiar. Which is human. We all do it. When push comes to shove and we can’t find someone who makes us happy we settle for what we know. In this case Severide has settled on Stella.

The majority of the fans see this as chemistry. I see it for what it is. Settling for what you know and are comfortable with. Severide needs a girl that completes him. He needs someone that gets him. He needs someone that will stand by him and not leave him when the chips are down.

I personally am tired of Stella. She gets on my nerves. Her hot headed attitude when things don’t go her way rubs me the wrong way. I don’t see how Severide can take her. He has to have nerves of steel to deal with her. I for one don’t see this relationship lasting very long. I get the feeling that Stella will be out of the picture sooner rather than later. I think Severide will have had enough of her or she will slip up big time in order to end things for good. Which in my opinion is the best thing that could happen.

Severide deserves better. He deserves to be happy in love and right now he clearly is not. I just hope that things get better for him sooner rather than later.

Again this was my opinion. This is how I feel. Feel free to share your opinion. Opinions are always welcome.

Steel Magnolia: A Lesson in Grief


I as just watching the movie Steel Magnolia. The part were M’Lynn and the girls are standing by Shelby’s casket at the cemetery always gets me. More so since 2009. The emotion that M’Lynn feels is perfectly natural for what she has been through. She just lost her daughter and she is trying to make sense of why it had to happen.

I have to admit that I am not one for funerals. Since 2009 I hate to have to go to a funeral. I don’t even like to go to the funeral home for that matter. Why you might ask. Well, the fact of the matter is that I have suffered a lot of loss in my life and having to deal with it is just not something that I want to face.

This movie is a true testament to what grief is all about. I think back to the part where M’Lynn is with Shelby in the hospital. She refuses to leave Shelby’s side for even one minute. This was her way of preparing for what she knew was going to happen. M’Lynn was making peace with the fact that her daughter was not going to get any better.

When we are faced with death we have to prepare ourselves for what is to come. However, no amount of preparation will help us be ready for what happens after. The one that we love passes on from this life. Then we are left the grieve their loss. Grief comes in stages and not everyone goes through those stages in the same way. Sometimes we go through some of the stages more than once.

We often question why this happened. I remember after Kaylee died feeling like M’Lynn. I questioned God as to why he took Kaylee from us so soon. She had a lot of life to live. I am sure M’Lynn felt the same way about Shelby. What was worse in Shelby’s case is that she left behind a young son, Jack. Shelby and Jack will ever get to make memories together.

For a child to loose a parent at any age is hard. I lost my Dad when I was 15 and my Mom when I was 35…20 years apart. It was hard both times. You are not expecting to loose your parents till they are in their 70s or 80s. My Dad was only 46 and my Mom was only 66.

For a parent to loose a child is hard as well. When Allaina passed away in 2009 I watch my Mom deal with the loss. Mom was not her mother, but was her God-Mother. They had become close after the passing of Allaina’s mom, Grandma Geraldine in 1995. My Mom felt like she was loosing a child. In a way that was so. Mom had been a big part of Allaina’s life. Grannie Geraldine was like a Mom to my Mom even though they were close friends. We spent a lot of time in her home when I was a kid. So this was a huge loss.

Grief is a part of life that we need to accept. We all go through it in one way or another. How we deal with it is up to you.

Enjoy The Quiet

Close your eyes and listen. What do you hear? Hopefully if you are like me quiet. The house is quiet for the first time in days. Not that I don’t mind the noise. However, someone in this house has to have the tv going at all times or music playing loud. It gets o my nerves. About the only time the house is quiet is when everyone is sleeping. That is a rare event that we are all sleeping at the same time.

So for the last hour the house has been so quiet you could hear a pin drop. I am loving it. It gives me time to do my meditation and prayer time. I can close off my mind and talk to God without interruption. Time to listen to what God has to say to me. Most of the time the only time that I get quiet is when I am on my walks. I close off my mind to the outside world and listen for God.

We all need times of quiet. Not just when we go to sleep at night, but those times when we are alone and can just be still. Those times when we can close off the outside world and be alone. Those are great times. Those are the times that I often find myself coming up with the best ideas for this blog.

Quiet is something we take for granted. If we have kids we often don’t get quiet till they are asleep or outside playing. No matter how many times we ask for quiet we get the opposite. They just seem to get louder. Then when we go into another room to block off the sound it gets worse.

Then there are times that we are home alone enjoying the peace and quiet that is rare in our lives when someone comes through the door or the phone rings. Time is up. We are driving down the road to work by ourselves when suddenly a ping or ding from our phone happens or even the phone rings. Quiet over.

We could be laying in bed enjoying the quiet when the phone rings or someone interrupts it. Often I find that our cat Cosmo comes to get in bed with me or is sitting by the bed Meowing for me to get up.  There have been times too that I have been enjoying the quiet of a peaceful shower or bath only to hear a knock on the door or someone yelling for me to break the silence.

We all need quiet. We need it to recharge our lives. I loved the drive to work in the morning. 15 minutes of quiet to talk to God and hear him speak. At one time the drive to work took 30 minutes so I had more quiet time. I enjoy the time in the car when I have to go places by myself. I often turn off the radio and enjoy the quiet of life.

However, there is times of quiet that we hate. In July 2015 when my sister and I came home from the hospital after Mom passed the house was too quiet. We walked in expecting Mom to be waiting for us, but that was not to be. I remember looking down the all and realizing how quiet it was in her apartment. It was the quiet of not having her with us anymore that I hated.

I remember taking an English Class in college where the professor had us sit in silence for 15 minutes with our eyes closed. Then we were to open them and write about what we saw, heard, and experienced in the quiet. It really made you think.

I remember when Hannah and Austin lived with us. Quiet was a blessing. They were so noise. The only quiet we got was when they were gone or asleep. There were those few times that they were quiet, but that was only because they were getting in to trouble. After they moved out I was so thankful for the quiet. It gave me time to clear my head.

One thing about work I loved was quiet. I would go to work a half hour before I needed to be there just so I could do a few things around the room and enjoy the quiet. That time before my teacher arrived when there was silence in the room and building. It was great.

Make the most of the quiet time that comes in your life. It is few and far between. You will be so glad that you did.

Chicago Fire Season 8 Episode 14: My Take

Ok so I am going to start something here that I just want to say is my opinion. I am a big fan of Chicago Fire. This is just my take from the episode. I hope to write each week about the show. So that fans know there is no new episode of the show next week. Preempted by the Presidential Debate.

Tonight’s show started off with Joe and the guys talking about his wedding plans. His bride to be Cloe has made Joe a guide book of sorts about wedding planning. Joe has asked Severide to be his Best Man. Well intentioned Stella sticks her nose in about how Kelly needs to be more involved in helping Joe with the planning of the wedding. From what it sounds at this point Severide is not too keen on weddings. Which I am gathering Stella does not like.

The show then centers around calls about gas leaks. That in the end gets solved which in turn saves many lives. This all comes after a fire call in which Gallo saves a young girl. They both get burned in the fire. However, the girl is hurt worse than Gallo. He takes an interest in the girl after this. I think that is a good thing that he is going to support her during her recovery.

I am also glad to see Ritter and Mouch becoming friends. Mouch needs some support because it seems lately that he is feeling like he is too told for the job and he should hang it up. I am also glad that he was asked to step in as driver on truck.

Then at the end of the show we find ourselves at Molly’s with Joe and Kelly. Joe is looking at the book that Cloe made. Over beers the two talk about marriage. Joe says that there is too much stuff to do to get married. Kelly then tells him if this marriage thing is too much then don’t get married. Joe then tells Kelly that he does not want to loose Cloe cause he really loves her. Kelly then tells Joe that he should marry Cloe. Joe tells Kelly that Kelly has this Best Man thing down pat. Kelly then tells Joe that he has been trying to tell Stella that.

I think the whole Best Man thing in this episode has several meanings.  1. That Severide is a good friend and does not need to be in the planning part of Joe and Cloe’s wedding. That is on them. 2. That Stella is trying to send Kelly a message that he is either not getting or he is ignoring. This wedding has put Stella in the mood to go down the isle with Kelly. You can tell it by how pushy she is. 3. It seems that Severide is not the marriage type. At least not now anyway. He was married once before and as he puts it that marriage never meant anything. I think Kelly was trying to give Stella a hint that he was not going to get married any time soon, ever, or with her. I kinda get the feeling that Kelly believes that he has a good thing going with her and does not want to mess that up.

That brings me to another issue: Kelly Severide and Stella Kidd’s relationship. Anyone who knows me knows that Severide is the WHOLE reason I watch this show. Anyone who knows me knows that I am not a Kidd fan at all. I think that she is too pushy, too demanding, too controlling, to opinionated,  and too high strung. I believe that Severide can do better and deserves better.

I mean take tonight’s episode. Stella pushes her opinion of what Severide should do as Best Man on him. She needed to let Severide find out for himself what Joe needed him to do as far as the wedding. I mean if Severide is not doing what she wants when she wants it she gets mad. He clearly does not need that. Severide needs to tell her good-bye.

Then there is Casey and Brett. I think that they would make a perfect couple. It seems that the show is going in that direction, but not really sure. Casey and Brett have been there for each other since she came back. Plus Casey has been there for Brett through this whole thing with her birth mother. I see this couple getting together and working out well.

Reminder: Next week there will be on Chicago Fire. However, the next week looks to be cross over week. Those are always interesting.

Stay tuned for more of just my opinion about the episodes of Chicago Fire.

Have Faith Over Fear

Recently I left a job to which I was working for 14 years. It was a hard decision, but one that I made for me. In the last 6 1/2 years I had issues that arose and when I stood up for myself things only got much worse. I was doing things that I was not hired to do as well as working hours that I was not paid for. During that time I spent a lot of time on the job talking to God and letting him be in control. At first, I was very upset about the job. Then I came to the decision that I needed to do what was best for me.

I am now in the process of seeking unemployment and looking for another job. It was suggested that I take time off and go on disability. I feel that that is silly. I am not disabled by any means. I want to go back to work in a job that I love. However, I feel that a break is necessary for me to get myself together to go back to work. I am learning that if you let your faith be bigger than any fear that you have you will find the path that God has for you in life. When this whole thing started with the job I let God be in control of the whole thing. I let him take over. I let my faith be in control. It was good. I think that if I were in control that I would have let my emotions get the best of me.

In 6 1/2 years I learned to put God first and let him be in control. I did a lot of talking to him on the job. I would often say God you’ve got this or God is in control. I often times would sing praise and worship songs in my head as a way to talk to God. Some times I would talk to God as I was doing certain things at work so that I could clear my heart and mind. A friend told me once that I needed to: Not tell God how big my problem is. Rather tell my problem how big my God is. I often do that. I have found that when I tell my problem that God is bigger than it is and that he is in control that I feel so much better. Putting God in control is great.

Most recently I have learned that when I have a problem to run to God first. I talk to God and seek him in all that I do these days. It is great. At the beginning of 2020 I started walking. When I go on my walks I talk to God. I am often silent and listen to what he has to say to me. That is so good. Let God speak to you when things get rough. He will see you through the storm.

I know that when the house is quiet that I can spend time talking to God. That is so good. I have found too that at night when I go to bed that I can lay in bed close my eyes and just let God speak to me. I listen for God’s still small voice as I drift off to sleep. Often I talk to God when I am driving places. I am most of the time alone in the car and that is a great time to talk to God about life. I know that he hears me. He is always there for me.

A friend once told me that when you talk to God you need to talk to him like he is right there with you. Make what you say to him be like talking to a friend. It will make you feel more at ease about talking to God. I think that this is so true.

So when life seems out of control talk to God. Let him be in control. Don’t forget to tell your problems how big your God is. It will all work out ok in the end.