Sunday, September 25, 2016

Personal Progress: Getting those projects done!

I said in my previous post that I want to make personal progress Wednesday's as the mutual nights the girls run to complete their projects and experiences - not to just come so they can pass something off. We're not quite there, yet, but we're getting there.

Personal progress night this past week was an easy activity to put together. I found a list of potential projects that the girls could do, and wrote every one of them on a 3x5 note card. The cards were taped to the wall. I chatted with the girls for a few minutes, and then had them look at the projects on the wall. They wrote down a list of every single one of those ideas that interested them. Then they were to choose one that they wanted to complete as a project and write the steps they would take to carry it out and had a leader sign off on it. The items listed work as custom experiences as well as projects, and were able to get ideas for multiple projects covering all of the values.

Every one that attending chose a project, made a plan and got approval to get started on it. The caveat is that they need to finish the experiences in the related value they are working on before starting that particular project.

The question is... will it work? Will I have girls finish a value and receive at least one ribbon sometime soon??

Monday, September 19, 2016

Personal Progress: The Struggle is Real

It's been 3 years since I got married, and I finally have someone to spill everything I'm thinking to... so the blog gathered dust for a while. But now, I'm back! I've been in my ward for a couple of years, and last year was called to be the secretary/ personal progress gal of the young women. At first, the teenagers terrified me completely. Now, I can't get enough of them! I love these girls, they make me smile and laugh. They also have given me a glimpse of what parenthood feels like, and how rewarding it can be when you see them succeed. (*Glimpse, not full view. Heavenly Father is keeping it that was so I'll still want to have kids someday.) #DivineNature 

I needed a place to record some ideas, gather some ideas, record my experiences and hopefully find people who can relate with what I'm going through with my young women. Most of the time, I feel like I'm at a standstill. I try many different ways to get these girls excited about Personal Progress and help them to understand how it can make an amazing impact on ones life. But the caveat with the program, is that's exactly what it is... personal. I can't be there when they get home from church and say, "You know what would be a great Sunday activity? Let's work on personal progress together." I can't force them to read their scriptures and say their prayers every day. I refuse to let them depend on mutual dedicated to personal progress each month as the only time they work on personal progress. I can, however, do the best I can to encourage them to work on it and attempt to get their parents actively participating. The rest is up to them. #ChoiceandAccountability

Image result for when you save a girl, you save generations hinckley

A year ago when I started, I received my notebook with all the records of the girls personal progress achievements. It made me so sad. It was empty. I was floored. Since then, I've had nothing but a fiery passion for this program. The girls need that kind of encouragement.

I asked the girls what they liked about personal progress, here were a couple of things I was told:
- They loved receiving treats for when they accomplished experiences
- They loved receiving packets that were found online that helped them to get multiple experiences done

...that was it.

I learned from my boss at work how much a one-on-one conversation can do for someone. Ever since I started, we've met for one hour, each week, talking about whatever. We follow up on work, or just chat. That did a lot for our relationship, allowed me the opportunity to get to know and trust her, and I value what we talk about.

So, I started just that. Two Sunday's per month, I started visiting each young woman on Sunday for no more than 15 minutes (unless they were laurels, because they love just chatting and I love that they love doing that because I think they're hilarious). In order to preserve family time and not intrude in their homes, I mapped out where all the girls live (we have a lot of girls, and HUGE ward boundaries) and visit one zip code of girls on one Sunday, the next zip code of girls the following Sunday. We sit in my car, drink hot cocoa, eat donuts, brownies, cookies, whatever. And we chat... about personal progress.**

This has become such sacred time to me. I don't have children, and my husband is in the EQP so he always has meetings, so I feel like these are the Sunday's that I really do get the most out of the Sabbath. When summer came, and I went on a break, I had several girls telling me I still needed to come visit them. Girls who had already finished the program wanted visits. This just taught me how much individual attention means to someone, and they need it at this scary time in their lives. I've had the opportunity to get to know these amazing girls, and find ways personal progress can be used in their day to day lives. #HisDay

The struggle I have is that, for a lot of girls, this doesn't help them progress. It has helped about 50% of the girls kick start the program again. Success is success, and I shouldn't put myself down because I know it has nothing to do with me. But my heart still breaks that, and I can tell by lack of action, girls do not see the importance of the program.

Step 1: Treat jar for the girls that complete experiences. Once the girls let me know that their parents or another leader has signed off an experience and shown it to me, I announce it during opening excersizes and let them choose a treat from the jar.

Step 2: One-on-one visits each month with the girls. Max 15 minutes, in my car, with a treat, and follow up/set goals.

Step 3: Make another type of rewards program.

Every 6 months, if the girls complete all of the goals they set (at least 2 experiences completed per month, and at least 1 project within the 6 month time-frame) they will be invited to do a fun activity. I'm just in the works of starting it, so we'll see how it goes. I'm hoping this will encourage the girls that are social to want to start somewhere. With general conference coming up, that's an easy quick project. Hopefully the first rewards party will have a lot of invites!

**Since the new school year started, I changed the program to be home visits every-other month. Unless they are Laurels who have not completed the program, then they receive monthly home visits. Those that do not receive a home visit one month, are visited during the personal progress mutual. And my goal for the personal progress mutual, is that is to be run entirely by the girls.

Friday, July 19, 2013

When 2 Become 1: An San Diego LDS Temple Wedding & Party

Mr. and Mrs. McCoy

 The Party

"Seas the Day! Enjoy a See's candy bar. Love, Kelsy and Tyson - Est. 2013"

Clean cake eating... except for the kissing.

The girls reaction during the cake kiss!

The First Dance

The first time I heard "Wanted" by Hunter Hayes on the radio, I couldn't stop thinking of Tyson. I'm not a huge country fan, and somehow I was listening to a station that played it. It wasn't too country if you ask me! Tyson and I had been practicing dancing (no technical moves here) (ok, maybe there was a twirl and dip- but just to make up for the awful one we did during our engagement session) and were just totally lost in the moment.

 These cute girls were right next to the dance floor watching us do our first dance. My two nieces on the outside, and a friend on the inside. Aren't they adorable?!

Daddy-Daughter Dance

Not your average Daddy-daughter dance- All growing up Dad drove me to school listening to the oldies. So what better song to have for the daddy-daughter dance than an oldie? This song reminds me of those times we drove to school. My dad would sing all the words to "La Bamba" and I'd slur them all along the way. No one knew what song I had chosen, and my dad was so sick that day. But he was a good sport and we had a very fun time dancing. 

Photo Booth Fun

Wedding Credits:
Planning: Amorology Weddings
Photography: Richard Pecjack
Photo Booth: Drunken Pixel

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Best. Year. EVER!!

My last post was 3 months ago in December of 2012, talking about how AWESOME of a year 2012 was going to be for me. At the end of the year, I had came to the conclusion and accepted the fact that 2013 was going to be a rough year for me. I was OK with it, just accepted it, and kept on living.

2013 has been an AWESOME year for me thus far, and I only see a better, more AWESOME future in the horizon.

You see, 2012 is also the year I met my fiance, Tyson. Little did I know (or... did I?) that we'd be getting married in 2013. So, I guess you could say that 2013 is going to be rough in that I'm moving to Bakersfield. But besides that? I get to have Tyson. I think I got the better end of the deal ;)

Being from Southern CA, Tyson and I will be married in the San Diego temple.

Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 is a year I'll always love.

I've heard my several people say, "2012 just needs to be over already. This has been a horrible year." To which I think, "Really? This year has been legen... wait for it... dary!" It was in 2011 that I latched onto Auntie Mame's line, "Life is a banquet and most people are starving themselves to death. Live! Live! Live!" And I have tried to live by that mantra since. 2012 is the year I was determined to accomplish many of my goals that have been years in the waiting.
2012 is the year that...

I made it to New York City. Cross that one off the bucketlist.

I saw Newsies on Broadway. Bucketlist? Check. 

I received my Bachelor's Degree. Cross that one off the bucketlist.

I graduated from the rivalry school (University of Utah), while working in the athletics department, and never converted. (Loyal, strong and true, wear the white and blue!)

I traveled Europe. Cross that one off the bucketlist. 
I finally heard someone say, "Gazuntite!" in Germany. By a German. Win.

I made a quilt. Look at this homemaker go!

I moved to Los Angeles.

I KICKED MY GOAL WEIGHT IN 'DA FACE!!! Cross that one off the bucketlist.

I can say I successfully completed and will continue to achieve my 2012 resolutions.
 2012 is the year I accomplished many goals, and I plan to do the same in 2013. This was a great year, and I'm so grateful to my Heavenly Father for giving me the courage and strength to get through it. Life isn't always easy, but I'd rather look at life with the eyes of an optimistic fool than a pessimistic genius.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Kicking my goal weight in the FACE!

Yo-yo dieter. That's me. I once went on a 3-month vegan diet for 6 days. Half way through this year, I had realized that no matter how I eat or exercise, nothing is changing unless I dedicate myself to it. Unless I really strive to make an effort and change, I'll remain the same. Anyone who knows me well knows that I've struggled with weight loss for a long time. Never managing to tackle it. I came close to my goal weight in 2008. I was 4 lbs away, and I honestly have no idea what happened. Two years ago I made a bet with my sister to get to my goal weight by a certain date or I had to attend BYU-Idaho. (And there was no way this girl was going to attend BYU-I.) Did I make it? No. Did I go to BYU-I? H-no. No matter how much I didn't want to go to BYU-I (and clearly wasn't going to even if I lost the bet). I didn't make my goal because others were expecting me to... rather than setting expectations and reporting to myself.

I've never made it. "One day..." is the horrible thought of procrastination that enters my mind all TOO often. One day? That one day is today. Because 2012 will always be remembered as the year I FINALLY kicked my goal weight in the face.

I've tried MANY diets, you name it, I've done it. But the science of losing weight is all-too simple for the average person to just accept. Diets are filled with too many empty and unrealistic promises. What's the secret formula, the one that every single diet entails but it's really just too simple to tell you?


It's that simple.

I got the "Lose It" app and recorded what I ate, EVERY. DAY. I chose the "Lose It" app because it had this awesome feature where I could just scan the barcode of a food and it would automatically enter in the calories of what I'm about to eat. I recorded my eating habits for 2 weeks alone, and was beyond surprised at the result. I ate from 1800-2000 calories a day. Somedays including exercise, some not. But I realized that I remained the same because...

If the calories you consume equates to the amount of calories you burn in a day, you are maintaining your weight. This is perfect if you've reached your weight loss goal. Not so perfect if you're trying to lose weight.

My diet plan suggested that I consume 1,208 calories a day to lose 2 lbs per week and reach my goal weight by a certain date. I didn't realize how much food I would be cutting out of my diet (hello, coming from 1800-2000 calories a day?!), and I had to get used to it. I wasn't starving myself, but I definitely had to adjust to this new amount of calories that I was going to be taking in... PERMANENTLY. Losing weight isn't a temporary option. You shouldn't just lose it, you should get rid of it. Forever. Gone. Never coming back. And in order for that to happen, the calorie intake vs calorie burn is crucial in maintaining the weight you want.

It's NOT EASY. I was light-headed for the first month, and still do get lightheaded sometimes. Somedays I want to just give up and give in, and throw all my hard work away. Those days happen, and I had to learn to forgive myself and move on the VERY NEXT DAY, not waiting until Monday to start a clean slate. That's not how a lifestyle is changed.

I hate counting calories. This was me. Stubborn calorie-hater. I realized that in order for things to work out in life, I need to make sacrifices and adjustments. Why would I expect my body to change if I wasn't willing to make any lifestyle changes myself? Question: Do you like counting points? Because counting points is really just another way of counting calories. Don't like calories or points, then yeah, maybe those pre-packaged foods that make you want to keel over and die rather than eating them is a better diet plan for you.

I really don't think this budget is enough food for me. My thoughts exactly. I hate to be blunt, but I will repeat it again. I wanted to lose weight. Therefore, calories out > calories in. If I ever wanted to eat more (or just ate more because, well, I wasn't keeping control of myself) (hey, I'm human... don't act like you haven't done it yourself!), I had to work for it. Morning or night, I was either on the treadmill running the extra mile or surfing a little while longer just to burn the extra calories needed to eat that birthday cake or late-night chocolate craving.

I count all my calories and what I exercise, but no matter what, I'm at a plateau. Listen, I'm not going to sugar coat anything. There's no other answer: You're burning just as many calories as you're eating. Whatever you're doing, if you're trying to lose weight, you're miscalculating what you're eating and how much you're exercising. The ONLY answer to being at a plateau when trying to lose is that you're calculating wrong. Suck it up princess. Truth hurts.

I hate dieting, I can't eat what I want. Sure you can. You just have to eat less throughout the day and be cool with that. If you want to eat more each day, you better be willing to work extra for it. And by work, I mean work out. Seriously. Knees to chest.

A new diet?? I must try it. What do you enjoy eating? Do you really think that you can go the rest of your life without eating it again? Why on earth would you want to torture yourself in eliminating sugar, carbs or fat from your diet? I feel awful for those who have to do it for health reasons, I have family members that can't eat gluten. But what is baffling to me is the people who choose not to eat these foods because, "they're not good for you." Well Einstein, if you really wanted to analyze it, I could probably find out something about each food that isn't good for you. Unless you have a disease, these foods are NOT killing you. Stop driving everyone around you crazy with your theories on food. Because really, when you talk about it, all anyone wants to do it smack you upside the head as they eat their bread basket. You want to be super granola healthy? Balance, don't eliminate.

This commercial really hit home. Willpower, it's all about willpower and keeping your eyes on the prize.

If you're struggling to lose weight, and have been for sometime. I know EXACTLY what you're going through. The frustrations, the disappointing pictures and clothing sizes, it really takes a toll emotionally. I've had a weight goal for YEARS that I never achieved. I came close, and always put it off for later, but it wasn't until I dedicated myself to succeed, and gave myself no other option, that I achieved it. And trust me, once you get going, you see the pounds fall off and the clothes get looser, it becomes easier and OH SO WORTH IT.

*This post is probably no new information to the average dieter. I'm writing this to record the success for myself and share with those who know me and my struggle for weight loss over the years. 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Kim & Kelsy dot blogspot dot com

Flashback to Interlaken, in the Summer of 2012. A New Yorker working inside a little shop on main street started hitting on us.

"Your names are Kim and Kelsy? You guys should like... have a blog or something."

Needless to say, he wanted to hang out with us cool cats. But we read each other's mind. "We've seen 'Taken'. We know how this ends."