Saturday, May 23, 2015

Split the Sandwich?!?

PNC Park  May 2015
It had been an emotional day in the midst of a stressful week.  There was a lot going on at work and home.  I was looking forward to a relaxing fun girls' night out with my BFF Amy.

By the time we arrived at Rivertowne inside PNC Park I was famished!  I was soaking in their delicious menu debating between a big juicy burger or mouth watering bbq pulled pork over pierogies when Amy knocked me over with a question . . .

"Want to split a sandwich?"

What?!  SPLIT a sandwich?  Are you CRAZY?!  No, I don't want to split a sandwich.  I want to devour every single morsel of stress-reducing goodness on this menu!!  Why in the world would I want to eat half of a sandwich?  I love you, but you have lost your mind.  I am over-the-top stressed out and when I am this stressed out I eat.  I eat and eat and eat and eat.  So leave me alone and go split a sandwich with someone else.

OK.  So, I didn't really say any of those words out loud.  Instead I smiled and said, "Sure!  Which one should we get?"

Amy and I enjoyed an incredible shared meal of Pub Pretzels, the Fish Sandwich with Pub Fries and each had an amazing glass of Hala Kahiki Pineapple Beer. We also shared two hours of fantastic conversation.  By the end of the meal I felt very content - both in my stomach and my heart!  I didn't need heavy food to ease my heavy heart -- I needed time with my BFF.  Delicious food was simply a bonus.

As Amy and I sat there, I thought back to the "old" Amy and Lisa dinners.  We'd share an appetizer, each get a full meal, each get dessert and talk for hours while drinking glass of pop after glass of pop.  In 2010 we both began to make changes in our lives to live healthier.  While we still enjoy chatting over a meal, our menu selections have changed.  We have come a long way in these five years!!
                   Amy and Lisa circa 2009
Amy and I with our awesome Zumba instructor Cat
April 2015
Three lessons can be gained from Amy and my Girls' Night Out:
1) Sharing your health journey with a friend makes the journey a lot of fun.
2) Dealing with your stress by talking about it is much healthier than dealing with it by eating.
3) Splitting the sandwich is a good idea.

Thanks Amy.  I love you!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


WHAM-O.  Two paddles and a ball.  I have great memories of playing hours of paddle ball the summer my church youth group went to Martha's Vineyard for two weeks to teach VBS on the beach (Yes, we were truly suffering for the Lord!).  When I saw this set at the store, I couldn't pass it up.  I hoped I had found the key to getting my kids off the couch and outside this Spring.

It turns out . . . this could be the best $5 I ever spent!

WHAM-O is an easy game to play.  Success comes quickly - we hit it back and forth four times.  Next time we make it for six.  Victory!

WHAM-O brings a light - though at times quite intense! - sense of competition - which pairing of family members can get a higher score?

WHAM-O creates funny memories.  Remember how JJ smacked himself in the face last time we played?  Mom, remember when you ran into the tree?  Ellie, what was that noise you made diving for the ball?

I often say that the hardest part of exercising is making the move to get off the couch.  The promise of easy, good old-fashioned competitive WHAM-O fun sparks that desire.  I think that it makes it easier for my kids to say yes when I ask them to play because they know it is going to be a good time.

Now here is the BEST part - I've discovered that the request for a couple games of WHAM-O leads to more outdoor activities - Let's shoot some hoops!  Mom, do you know where the Frisbee is?  Do you remember that summer we played four-square almost every night?  Instead of my kids losing interest after awhile and heading back inside, they are wanting to stay outside and play longer!  A totally unexpected twist to my WHAM-O plan.

A twist that I am embracing.  And enjoying every moment of it!!
The record currently stands at 72!