My one word for 2015 is “Honesty.”

How am I doing with HONEST this month? I think I’m doing pretty well – at least when I’m tempted to “forget” to count the several handfuls of cashews I just put in my mouth, I remember my word and I add them to my food diary.

Towards the middle of January, I fell victim to the dreaded cough and stuffy nose – no fever, just horrible congestion. I’m not sure whether it was a strange cold or an allergy to something, but I was very uncomfortable for a couple of weeks. I did skip my exercising for a couple of days, because I just didn’t feel like it. To be HONEST, I rocked my way to my steps on those days when I was felling so awful. (See note below about exercise.) I made them clean the filter on the furnace to make sure it wasn’t mold in the duct system, and I seem to have mostly gotten over it.


It helped that there were several day last week when the sun came out and the temperature improved to 60 deg. I took full advantage of the warmer days and visited the park and the waterfront for a couple of long walks. Like the rest of the country I’m ready for spring to be here, but I suppose we must wait another couple of months to really turn the corner.

Snowy mountain

I’ve been busy – mostly with church and exercise – but I’ve also started participating in a creative writing group here at Tobey Jones and next week I’ll start piano lessons again.

Since I’m on the session, I’m responsible for the Hospitality and Outreach Team, and we’re beginning a couple of new mission projects to do with education. HONESTLY, this is one of the places my heart lies. We will be meeting with the principal at the elementary school that’s a block from the church to find out how we can help them. I’ve also developed a relationship with the fellow who runs the “progressive” church college fellowship at the University of Puget Sound. We will be taking food to their dinner in March and perhaps we can expand our mission to them.

Bethany Presbyterian Church (2)

Another BIG project at Bethany is the beginning of a Capital Campaign to raise money to bring the building up to ADA code. It’s a nice old building, but it’s three stories and there is no elevator. It makes it completely inaccessible for any activities held on the third floor, and difficult for anything held on the lower floor which is where the fellowship hall, main kitchen and nursery are. Additionally, there is no bathroom on the third floor where the Sunday School rooms are. So our little congregation of fewer than 100 people need to raise $300,000. We’ve hired a consultant who assures us we can do it, but I wouldn’t be HONEST if I didn’t say I’m afraid we might be biting off more than we can chew. That’s going to be a major project for the next year.


On the exercise front, I’ve been faithful and mostly HONEST about getting my 10,000 steps a day on my FitBit (except for the two days I was sick). I will admit that sometimes I haven’t walked as much as the device has reported – it counts steps as I rock in my recliner in the evening watching TV – but I’m always careful to get the full 10,000 steps for the day before I sit down.

I did get some great news when I went to the doctor for my bi-annual type-2 diabetes check-up. Because of my obsessive exercise and food monitoring, I have apparently lost enough weight, eaten correctly and exercised enough that I am no longer clinically diabetic. My HbA1C was 5.9 (with no medication) and “diabetic” starts above 6.0. Of course, I have to keep eating right and exercising, and not gain any weight, but health-wise I’m fine. I’ve even been able to experiment with eliminating the statin I’ve been taking for many years. I particularly wanted to get rid of it so I could eat grapefruit again. The hurdle is my blood pressure medicine.

That’s been January – HONESTLY!


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