Just Got 2 Tell

Anything & Everything I Feel Compelled to Share with the World!

It’s Just A Number April 29, 2013

I’ve always struggled with my weight. Since kindergarten, when a boy called me “slow-poke”. I’ve been through many failed attempts at getting healthy, though “healthy” was not always my goal. Many times I just wanted to be ‘skinny’ or at least ‘not fat’. But see, I’m cursed. I love to eat and I live in the South. And I grew up in a Baptist church. And my mother and grandmother are fantastic cooks. And I hate sweating and being hot, or at least I did growing up. And my favorite hobby was reading as opposed to athletics.

I admit, I cheated in P.E. when we had to run the mile every Friday. I usually only ran 3 laps instead of the required 4, but taking longer than 15minutes to finish meant running again on Monday. I didn’t like to run, not unless it was to get away from my brother or chase him down for some reason I felt was important then.

One of my biggest problems has been what I call ‘stick-to-it-iveness’. I’m really not sure if it’s a word or if others have used it as well or even claim a copyright on it, but I use it. I start something and do good for like a week then the motivation wanes and I fall back to old habits. The most I was able to stick to ‘getting healthy’ was in college. Oddly enough I didn’t have a problem with the Freshmen Fifteen, I’d already gained some from spending a summer as a missionary in Houston (those church people fed me well). Gym on campus was paid for by tuition, so I might as well get my money’s worth. By the time I had moved home Christmas ’07, I had lost 25lb. But being back home where their eating and activity habits hadn’t changed, those pounds slowly came back.

Moved out again two years later, was going to start afresh. Tried walking and running on the road, taking the dog with me. Beagles do not make good running companions. They always want to follow their nose, and plus my oldest (who was my only then) does great on the way out and most the way back until he realizes we’re close to home and then stops, refuses to walk. I thought at first he was just tired by then, but no. He didn’t want to be inside or on the chain. Can’t let him loose, too stubborn to come when called.

In September, I joined a gym that’s not far from the house and despite spraining my ankle and the typical overeating during the holidays, I’ve lost 29 pounds. Most weight I’ve lost ever. And I feel great. My right ankle is still weak, but it has come a long way from where it was. In November 2011, I started having problems with my knees, an annoying clicking sound when going up hills and stairs and pain after extensive use. Mild arthritis was the eventual diagnosis. I can’t remember the last time I took a pain pill for my knee, though the clicking is still there.

It’s different this time. I know it is because my focus for getting in shape is a lot different from just looking good or being ‘not fat’. My goal as I burn calories and push myself to run farther than I ran the week before is so that I will be ready and able to do that which God has called me to do. How can I be a wife and mother, taking care of others, when I can’t take care of my own body? There is no limit to what God may give me, to what He may ask of me. So if He asks me to take His love to the top of a mountain, will I be able?

It’s still a hard battle. Day by day. (step by step, day by day…..theme song to Step by Step from ABC’s TGIF, stuck in my head now) It’s a conscious choice every moment, and yes I fail. Still have failures everyday, but it’ll get better. One day I’m going to enjoy raw tomatoes, though I’ll always have to pass on that “mater samich” slathered with Duke’s mayo.

** Update July 31, 2013. I DO enjoy raw tomatoes now, though it is still better not by itself, and I have eaten a “mater samich” with a very small amount of Duke’s mayo.


Dresser Revamp

So normally I post thoughts on life or God, things that He’s revealed to me lately, etc. This post is different. A DIY project I tried my hand at. And it’s just one of those things I really want to share with someone, so I figured if it’s a ‘Just Got to Tell’ then I could still post it here.

I’ve had this dresser forever, almost literally. It once belonged to my dad’s brother’s sister, Aunt Lucille (but in our family ‘aunt’ sounds a lot like ‘ain’t’). All of her belongings were auctioned off when she passed away and my parents bought her bedroom suit for me (I think I was around 2 years old when this happened). The bed is long broke, but I still use this dresser. It’s officially called a “chest of drawers”, but again, we don’t pronounce things like normal people and say Chester drawers, so I usually prefer to write ‘dresser’. It’s quicker.

dresserrevamp1dresserrevamp2As a child, I loved stickers. And unfortunately saw something on TV about decoupage, and decided it would be cool to put stickers on the dresser. It might have looked better if I’d had enough stickers to cover it entirely, as I’ve now done with my laptop, but nope. There was also an incident involved spilled fingernail polish.

But I’ve had the plan to paint it for years now. At the time I was living in my grandparents’ house in Virginia and using my grandma’s dresser. Beautiful dresser, eight huge drawers, mirror, one loose board on top, but not bad. So this dresser was being used to hold scrapbooking and other craft supplies. It did its job even with the stickers, but the plan was to paint it, when I got around to it. Painting the rooms were higher on the ‘to do’ list. Then I got a job back in my home town and moved 2x within a year. After the last move, the dresser sat in the garage because I wasn’t going to move it in until after I painted it. As you can see from the picture above, mold and mildew started up since the garage has no humidity control.



I took the hardware off and the drawers out and cleaned the whole dresser with diluted Murphy’s wood cleaner. Mildew gone. Next: stickers and fingernail polish. Tackled that with Goof-off, a slow and sticky process but accomplishable.

Next was the tricky part. Mixing up a batch of Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint. I’d read about its finish and texture and liked the idea of that better than latex. I used Ironstone for the dresser and drawer fronts and French Enamel for the drawer pulls and interior.

Definitely different than using premixed latex, but also definitely worth the experiment. It took several coats of white to get the opaqueness I wanted, but it worked because I had mixed up plenty of paint.

Milk paint you only mix up as much as you need for the project. Dry, the stuff lasts forever (so I’m told), but once it’s mixed it only lasts for up to a week, stored in the fridge.



I lost count of how many coats of white I did (4 or 5), but it took 3 coats on the hardware and 2 coats inside the drawers to complete the look I wanted. The other thing about milk paint is it has to be sealed. Wax, polyurethane or hemp oil has to be used to protect the paint and also makes it a washable surface. I went with wax, not hard to do, just time consuming.

I started the project Friday evening after work, and was finished by Saturday’s suppertime. This is including a lunchtime break that was long enough for a movie and trip to the gym.

dresserevamp9dresserevamp10 And voila!  There you have it. Looks beautiful in my room too.

Note for future reference: If ever I am blessed to have my own children, they will be highly encouraged to place their stickers on plastic containers like pencil boxes. Not on the furniture.