Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Motivational Challenge - Winner!

Team Four Bears is now only $635 away from our $5000 goal!
Want to help us reach our goal?
Just click HERE!!

Our Motivational Challenge winner is Emily G Bear! Emily is a super hip young Mama Bear of three young cubs. She is so very bright, loves her kiddos, is a culinary whiz, and has a razor sharp wit. In addition to crossing paths with her at church, I often catch up with her at the local gym. We can trade stories of being called a man when we rock our sassy short hair during our workouts!

Emily G Bear's motivational story for getting/staying fit (her words):

"The days I get to go to the gym are the only days I get a shower."

Did I not mention the razor sharp wit? But, seriously, what better motivation for a Mama Bear with young cubs at home than a guaranteed hot shower (without interruption from the cubs)?

Love it.

Thanks to all that participated! So glad to see there are other bears out there that are pushing themselves and finding motivation!

Keep moving!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Motivational CHALLENGE - What's your motivation?

Team Four Bears is now only $710 away from our $5000 goal!
Want to help us reach our goal?
Just click HERE!!

What is YOUR motivation?

I watched this YouTube video recently and was moved beyond words. You may have already seen it. Maybe not. Take a moment to watch it (major kleenex alert!):

Amazing, no?

When bears hear that I'm a marathoner, their first comment is something along the lines of "Are you crazy?" or "I couldn't run 26.2 miles if I was being chased by a bear!" (Come on. Did you expect me to use another animal?) To answer their first question, yes, I am crazy, but not because I run. And in response to their second comment? Well. Yes, yes you could.

You just haven't tried.

But here's the thing: I understand not trying. I've been there. And really, while I've never had to lose as much as Ben (in the video), I've had to have inspiration to get myself off the couch, out the door, and on the pavement. I feel Ben's journey. I share his process.

It's no secret that I've battled weight issues for a long time (helloooo, public battle!). Those issues eroded my body image and began to make me think I was something less than fearfully and wonderfully made. Over the past year, I decided to change my focus (again...very publicly). I decided to focus more on the positives (my fitness, my strength) and less on the negatives (a number on a scale). In doing so, I became more confident, happier and STRONGER than I've been in a long time. And if that means my jeans fit a little better too, well, that is just icing on the cake!

Now, let’s be real here. I’m not perfect. Not by a long shot. However, each day, I'm finding my list of "cans" is overtaking my list of "can'ts." Sure, I still battle old demons and sub-par choices (like my single handedly demolishing almost an entire Cheese Ball at Thanksgiving, for example). But, I know now I’m moving forward on this journey, not back.

One step at a time.

And that is all that matters.

So, don’t be surprised the next time you hear someone tell me “they could never…” you then hear me interrupt them with a long list of why they certainly could.

And now, for the TEAM FOUR BEARS Motivational Challenge:

I want to know what is YOUR motivation for getting and staying fit? Do you have a story to tell? Put it in the comments section and let me know. I guarantee I’ll read every story!

But, do you also want EVERYONE to know your story too? Well, put your $MONEY$ where your motivation is! Be the HIGHEST DONOR to Team Four Bears on TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2011 and you will WIN the opportunity to tell your story right here on THIS BLOG!

(“Official” Rules: donate the highest $ amount to Team Four Bears between 12:00 a.m. and 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, November 29, 2011 to win)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

What's in your grocery cart?

Through your generosity, Team Four Bears is now only $760 away from our $5000 goal!
Want to help us reach our goal?
Just click HERE!!

Our Thanksgiving shopping list
lovingly prepared by Brother Bear

The Four Bears Den has been put in charge of an entire food group for our Thanksgiving festivities. That food group is: PIE. Mmmmm, who doesn't like a good pie? Specifically, Pumpkin Pie & Pecan Pie. Since both the cubs are home today and Papa Bear is working, I thought it would be fun to let each cub "help" me with the preparations. In my mind, this will work out great. Each cub will have a pie assigned to them. They will be neat, follow directions, and never, ever lick the beater.

Yeah right.

Seriously, I expect it to be controlled chaos and my only goal is that I don't have to redo any pies.

But, even if I do, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Looking for a good Pumpkin Pie recipe? Look no further! This is my go-to recipe for pumpkin pie:

Mama Bear's Spiced Pumpkin Pie

2/3 cup golden brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbs all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp ginger
1 1/2 cup canned solid packed pumpkin
2 TBS mild flavored or light molasses
3 large eggs
1 cup whipping cream
1 frozen deep dish pie crust

Put a baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees. Whisk first 8 ingredients together in a large bowl. Whisk in pumpkin, molasses, and eggs and then add cream. Pour mixture into prepared frozen crust. Place pie on preheated baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees and bake until set (sides puff up and center is just set) - about 40 minutes. Can be made one day ahead, just cover and refrigerate. Serve at room temperature. (If you are an overachiever and want to use homemade pie crust, feel free. Just be sure to watch the crust so it doesn't burn!)

So, what are you making for Thanksgiving? All of it? One part? Nothing? Let me know!

Monday, November 21, 2011


I've mentioned this before, but Papa Bear and I are a house divided when it comes to looking at a glass (proverbially speaking, of course). He, ever the realist, sees a glass half empty. I, on the other hand, see the glass as half full. One of the many reasons we go together like peas and carrots. ( Assuming you like peas and carrots together. Which I don't. Because, eww. They are the grossest veggies known to mankind {other than brussel sprouts and cauliflower - gag!} why would you ever put them together?)

I digress.

So. We are twelve days aways from the 2011 MetroPCS White Rock Marathon. TWELVE days! There isn't anymore training left. Just waiting. My favorite thing!

We've had some bumps in our training plan this year. Papa Bear's bump was the worst with the unexpected removal of his appendix. He's bounced back rather quickly, but he's worried his goals for a 4th Boston are out of reach now. Cup half full.

I've started the season with a strained hamstring and ended it with a strained quadriceps. Both minor annoyances. I currently have a chest cold (or tuberculosis...jury's still out) that I'm hoping to kick sooner versus later. Other than that, my training season was spectacular. And any seasoned marathoner knows, that's not a good thing. We runners are a superstitious lot. And for me, that means I need to have one horrific training run before the race. Or else, the race may be the horrific part. But, who knows, right?

So, we are a mere twelve days away from a spectacular day of family running and celebration, and we aren't feeling 100%. We also aren't at 100% of our fundraising goal. We are $1275 short of our $5000 goal. We need to raise (over) $100 per day for the next twelve days to meet our goal.

Now, a Mama Bear could look at this and get discouraged. She could whine and pout, and talk a lot about how half full that glass is.

But not this Mama Bear.

This Mama Bear's cup is not only half full, Cyberbears, it's overflowing.
  • Overflowing with gratitude for a team of doctors, nurses, orthotists, and physical therapists that treat my cub with dignity, respect, love and passion.
  • Overflowing with gratitude for friends and family that have supported us emotionally through our journey.
  • Overflowing with praise for the gift of being able to run ONE mile. Much less twenty six point two. A point that is never, ever far from my mind.
  • Overflowing with humility at the number of friends, coworkers (Papa Bear's), and family that have sacrificed from their pocketbook to help us raise money. We know that each dollar you donated, whether one or one thousand, was a dollar you could have spent on yourself or your family. We are honored.
So, no, you won't hear me complaining, or talking about a glass half full. No way, no how.

No matter what, my cup overflows...

***Interested in making a donation to "Team Four Bears"? There's still time!! Just click here!***

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Conspiracy Theory

Today on Facebook, I'm talking about a radical conspiracy I've joined. Click here to read more. Warning: reading this post may change your life.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Loud and Clear

Have you heard the voice of God? Today on Facebook, I'm talking about hearing God through (of all things) my car stereo. Click here to read more.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Conquering Fears

Yes, Cyberbears. I conquered a fear this weekend. It was difficult. There was a wee bit of crying. And nashing of teeth. And perchance some other minor dramas. But I stuck with it. I endured. I did it. I conquered my fear.

No. I didn't conquer my fear of making up my bed, Mother Bear.


That's me! In a pair of skinny jeans! Seriously! Do you see the exclamation points?


Remember this post? Yeah, me too. Well, my derriere is still round and ample. But, day by day, my confidence is growing. I'm becoming more confident with the body God gave me and how I'm putting it to use as His temple. And, the skinny jeans? Well, besides being a reward for my goal setting and achieving, they are a fun reminder that I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

Even if I have a lil' junk in the trunk.

Here's hoping they don't go out of style too quickly!

Thanks for joining on this journey with me. I hope to, in time, share more with you about how I'm trying to conquer my body image issues - one day, one challenge at a time.

(Oh. And, bonus item. Said jeans cost only $16.99! Thanks to dear friends JoBear and LHBear for hooking me on the greatness that is TJMaxx!)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Deep Thoughts

Or not so much.

It seems that with all I've had going on with life, I just can't seem to string a poignant thought together these days. My commitments are too many, my to-do list too long, and I've felt pulled in a million different directions. I've been overwhelmed with life emergencies as well as making serious decisions for our family that have left me bereft of anything worthy to write, much less post. My brain lately is only capable of random, short spurts of twitter-esque thoughts. Fashion Friday pictures linger on my hard drive. My plans and goals for updating on Team Four Bears have been delayed and delayed. Basically, I've left this blog "like a ship without a sail, like a boat without a rudder, like a fish without a tail." (extra points for those collegiate Cyberbears that know the reference!). For this control freak Mama Bear, feeling this way has been beyond frustrating.

The good news is, many of my (over)commitments are closing down in the next few weeks and (for the most part) big family decisions are behind us. The clouds are parting and I'm starting to see the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel.

The bad news is, in an effort to entertain my audience (all 3 of you), I've decided today to deliver the deep thoughts that have been bouncing around in my head lately.

I'll just go ahead and say this now and get it out of the way: send all complaints to our corporate headquarters - myfriendandspousewhoencouragedmetostartthisblog (at)fourbearsinthebed (dot) com.

Without further adieu:
  • While editing/reviewing recent communications and writing, I've noticed that I have a terrible habit of leaving my parenthesis open. Instead of thinking of myself as a grammatically incorrect, I've decided to label myself as someone who likes to keep her options open.
  • If I were in charge of some local races, (which I'm not. Because, I DON'T HAVE THE TIME!) there would be some significant changes. Numero Uno being the porta potties. Bottom line: you can never have enough porta potties at a race. Never.
  • As evidenced by deep thought above, my never ending immersion in potty training, an elderly dog, an eight year old boy, and a spouse, my life is consumed with poo. I never thought this would happen. Yet here I am. Immersed in poo. I could start a blog about poo. Seriously. When I listen to one of my favorite songs, "These Are The Days" a life immersed in poo is not exactly what I'm thinking. (Cub Master Bear...that one's for you)
  • Numero Dos race change would be wide, wide, wide starting areas. 2700 people smushed into a small space is more than this claustrophobic Mama Bear can handle. Don't bears have personal space issues anymore?
  • I set another PR this weekend for a half marathon. Shaved 2 minutes off my previous best. I'm kinda stoked about it. Interestingly enough, I ran a much smarter race than last year, but it was (or, it felt like it was) a harder race. Either way, color me happy.
  • I've seen and heard nothing but complaints about Daylight Savings Time. Can I say, it has been THE BEST THING EVER for our den? Seriously. I'm bouncing out of the bed. NO JOKE! Papa Bear's jaw hit the ground this morning when I got out of bed without snoozing the alarm. And the kids? They wake up BEFORE the alarm AND (more importantly) they are HAPPY about it. Bring on the Daylight Savings Time, Cyberbears. Bring it on.
  • I have a new addiction habit: nightly bowl of sugary cereal. It's a problem. The cereal changes from week to week (based on the sales), but the addiction habit sticks. Perhaps there are 12 step programs? Or, perhaps, I'll just stick my head in the sand. They are whole grain cereals after all.

Okay. So, maybe I should have kept my thoughts to myself. But, where's the fun in that?

Hoping to be back soon with something more interesting...