Weigh in #5

So today is the day that I regret blogging about my weight-loss journey. It's fun to type success stories week after week in here. It's great to get encouraging comments from all you - keeps me going strong.

But this week (cue emotional music in the key of A minor), actually the past two weeks were not good to me. Or was I not good to them? Either way, I gained. Not just a bit. I gained 6 lbs. according to my bathroom scale. I know that I didn't watch what I was eating while I was in Redding this past weekend. And my mom made rocket cake. What was I supposed to do?

But I had no idea that I was gaining that much.

So this is where I confess that I took a couple steps back in losing weight.

I am gonna kick my own butt this week.

Weigh-in: 296 lbs.

Total loss: back to zero, kleenex please.



Showers in Redding

No, that's not the forecast (though it may be the forecast in Salem...always). That is what the theme was for our lives this past weekend. Kara (Sam), Caleb, & I went down to Redding for the weekend. Kara put on a shower for my sister, Juli on Saturday and Kara had a baby shower put on for her on Sunday. In the mix was good friends, family flown in from Nebraska, leading worship for Ginosko (Morris' church plant) and a Foothill Cougar football game that ended with a last second blocked field goal to win. All in all, a great weekend. Here are some pics to refresh your memory...

It's been a while since all four of the Brown kids have been together. It was so good to hang out. Joni (bottom left) flew in from Nebraska for the weekend.

Joni brought her youngest son, Zak, along with her. Caleb had an awesome time with his cousin.

This picture is my favorite. Me and my oldest sister, holding our KIDS. Kinda weird, kinda cool.

Justin Morris decided to read a "bedtime story" to Caleb. After this picture was taken, they debated predestination. Caleb totally put him in his place.

Caleb got to hang out with his good friends, Mattie and Chesnie (pictured).

Melissa read Caleb a real bedtime story - and told Caleb the truth about predestination.

Grandma Tutu, Papi Kirschman, & Tia (Jean) travelled over for the weekend and Caleb always loves his time with Tia.

I think Krista is getting pinned.


Update on Samaria Rae...

In case you're not familiar with that name, Samaria Rae is the name of our daughter. She is due on October 26th of this year. We have set a C-section for the 21st of October...or as my wife calls it, "the slice-and-dice".

We are always giving you updates on Caleb, who is 14 months last Tuesday. So we (not wanting to be the kind of parents who show favoritism to one child, and totally forget to take pictures during the first 5 years of the other child) want to update you on how Samaria is doing. This info is from babycenter.com.

Samaria now weighs about 4 3/4 pounds (like your average cantaloupe) and is almost 18 inches long. Her fat layers — which will help regulate her body temperature once she's born — are filling her out, making her rounder (like Daddy). Her skin is also smoother than ever (like Mommy). Her central nervous system is maturing and her lungs are continuing to mature as well.

Momma is doing well, too. Getting more and more uncomfortable as the days progress, but all in all she is healthy. I have to remind her to eat sometimes (not because she is trying to be a bad Mom, but because she is so consumed with caring for Caleb and I that she sometimes forgets, which I have no concept of...forgetting to eat, that is), and she will lie awake most nights out of her discomfort. For some reason, Samaria is a nocturnal mammal, and will only come awake during the wee hours of the night. But we will still love her like she was our own...cuz she is!


Weigh In #4

Weigh-in: 290 lbs. (-1)

Total lost: 6 lbs.

So I'm happy but discouraged. You ever felt that way? It's weight lost, but this whole "one pound per week" thing is getting old. I did really good this week with eating and exercising every day. Felt great physically all week.

But, c'mon, seriously...a pound?!

My wife just said, "Jeff, think about it. That's a POUND off of you."

True, Kara. Very true.


Weigh in #3

Sorry about not reporting last week. I only lost .5 lbs.

This week, I stayed exactly the same. Weird. But we did go out to Red Robin this week. Darn those fries. And the ranch dressing. And the BBQmayo. And the Honey Mustard. Oh well.

Weighn in: 291 lbs.

Total lost: 5 lbs.

Pictures from Labor Day Weekend

Our good friends, the Milers, drove up to Salem for Labor Day weekend and we had a blast. Here's some pictures to make you feel like you were stalking us the whole time.

So Matt & Corrie decided after we had purchased some berries from the market that they still needed more...and found this berry tree/bush on the way home.

Matt & Jeff joined a Fantasy Football League for college football together and had their draft on Friday night...2 minutes after the Millers arrived. Whew!

Caleb & the girls.

Sunday night, we all went to the Oregon State Fair and had a great time. Though it rained off and on, and everything there is expensive.

Elephant Ears. This may have been the only reason we went to the fair.

The Millers enjoyed their first elephant ear ever...and Corrie went into sugar shock.

Petting Zoo.

That's my boy.

Our good friend Jon Hastings also made a trip to Salem (his hometown). Really good to see him.


My Recent Surgery

So I was in our weekly worship planning meeting this morning and my fellow worship leader, Logan, shared something with me that made me stop. Ever had that happen to you? Somebody says something profound our outside the proverbial box, and you are forced to have brain surgery to see if the doctors can successfully infuse this new truth into your cerebellum. I had that moment today.

We were talking about worship (imagine that) and he shared something he heard recently at a chapel at Corban College here in Salem. Here it is.

Corporate worship is our chance to align our stories with His.

All of us are crafting stories of our lives. Some of us choose to have a victim story (actually most of us do). Others have dominant stories, where we seek to gain power over anyone and everyone. Still others choose to have stories where we believe anyone who disagrees with us should be put to death, or at least slapped across the face with a black glove. Those of us who come into our weekly worship time with the body of Christ are in the process of writing our stories. Truth be told, the majority of our stories look nothing like the story of the gospel. Yet when we are able to sing songs of worship or recite powerful scriptures or hear the life-changing truth that God has breathed into the written Word, then our story becomes aligned with His. When we choose to give up our story and abandon ourselves to the story He's writing in us, then "abundant life" is ours.

This is my story.
This is my song.
Praising my Savior all the day long.

This will change the way I lead worship. The surgery is underway. And I love it.