Friday, March 29, 2013

Kimberly and Bryan…




Two weeks ago, our daughter Kimberly,

walked barefoot across the beach, to give her heart

to a man she loves.




Standing in a circle of  love, surrounded

by family and friends, Kim and Bryan joined their

hands in heartfelt marriage.




Everything was magical.






Everything was perfect.





Weather, time and place.


Most importantly, true love.





Together, they are complete.


Two hearts beat as one.


They make everyone smile.


They are beautiful. Inside and out.



Bryan and Kim. You are right as rain!


Let the adventure begin!


Photo credit Jen Simon, Fondly Forever.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Just Juice!

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Hi! My name is Roxanne. I am a coaches wife, mother of three and an artist. Once upon a time I was young and thin but over the years I had become nice and fat. Or as I like to think of it, cheerfully chubby. That sounds better right?

Though I never was comfortable with being "chubby", I tried to make the best of things and live life to the fullest. Undisciplined and distracted by family and a busy life, the extra weight crept up on me a few pounds a year. Hardly noticeable except for the increasing clothing size. I was able to disguise my thickening waist for a while with cute loose linen tops, more make up and jewelry. At least I thought I was, until I saw photos of myself. Boy, would I get mad when I saw a picture of my fat little self! I'd say, "why did she put that picture of me on her blog"? "I know I'm big but I'm not that big!" But I was big. The image in my head had not been updated in years. the truth is, I had put on 1oo pounds since my wedding day. I became camera shy. Avoiding photos at all costs. Hiding on the back row which is hard when your short. Trying to hide is hard work. In January 2013, I decided I was sick and tired of being fat. Trust me! It wasn't the first time I've felt that way (I've started every diet known to man) but it will be the last. Yes, I know that's bold talk for someone with my track record but I know more than ever before it's true. You know why? Because I get to choose!

Fall  2012

On January 8th, my 34th anniversary, my daughter Kimberly, called to wish us a good day and while talking she slipped into our conversation the suggestion that I watch a documentary that she just saw called, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. Kimberly, like her sister, brother and dad know me well and never give up trying to help and inspire me. Their love, encouraging words and support has surrounded me for decades.

Our kids! Kimberly Spradlin Wolfe, Clint Spradlin and Bethany Spradlin Saxton

 I am so grateful they didn't give up on me because as soon as we finished talking, I found the documentary on and spent the next hour intently watching Joe Cross, a charming Australian man travel across America discussing health and nutrition, while on a 8 week juice fast. Before the documentary was over, I had decided I was already in! With just over 2 months left until Kimberly's beach wedding in San Lucas Cabo, I had just enough time to do a 60 day juice fast. The following day, I gathered up everything I needed. An expensive Bella Kitchen juicer (less than $50 at Target), and lot's of fresh vegetables and fruits. Bright and early on January 10th, my juice fast began. Using the FSND documentary as my guideline, I juiced 4 to 6 times a day. Drinking 16 to 22 ounces of juice. The ratio I used was 80 percent vegetables and 20 percent fruit. Totally new to juicing I Googled 'best juice recipes' and took notes on possible combinations. Which I used daily, in creating my own concoctions. Though it took me a few days to get into the swing of things, I quickly adjusted to my new adventure. Adding to the fun by photographing, sharing recipes and thoughts on my blog.

 Initially, this was for my own benefit. A way to keep me focused. However, in the weeks to follow people began to ask questions and I was so glad I had a simple way to answer. At the same time I began juicing, I recruited a  friend and joined an early morning boot camp.

 I know all of this sounds very drastic but I had caught a vision of something I could possibly achieve in a short amount of time that would yield dramatic results and I was committed. The first few days there was a little adjustment in that I, for the first time in my life wasn't eating. But quickly I discovered something amazing! Something that would make weeks of juicing not only possible but enjoyable. Here it is plain and simple. Within minutes of drinking a glass of fresh juice (80 veggie/ 20 fruit) you will fill full and satisfied. It's like the inside of your body is singing the Hallelujah Chorus! Seriously. Never has my mind, body and spirit experienced such peace. It's a little hard to explain but if you are a foodie, that tends to live to eat, you might understand. The truth is that my entire juice fast was an extremely enjoyable experience. You may be surprised to hear that not once did I feel tired or weak. To the contrary I energy level was consistently high. That, coupled with a sense of well being made the journey a joy.

On the third day, I stepped on the scales and had a big surprise....I had lost 6 pounds! Two weeks later, I had lost 17. After six weeks, I lost 30 pounds!!! It was amazing to say the least. To be full, satisfied, energetic and optimistic, while losing a pound every other day was a new experience. I had a brighter outlook on life. Which effected me in everyway. From my personality to my art work. My sense of humor and playfulness returned,( much to my families delight) plus I felt mentally bright. You'd have to know me to appreciate this :) Occasionally, maybe every other day or so, I would chew up/eat some of my daily veggies/fruit. Mainly, to keep my digestive track busy. Eating a nice veggie/fruit salad with lemon squeezed on it made social gatherings a breeze. After all, the goal is to build health through better nutrition.

Just Picked            5' x 3'             Acrylic on canvas

On day 48, two weeks before the wedding, I decided to add a little lean protein back into my diet. While still juicing daily,  I also began to add colorful salads and a variety of roasted vegetables. The transition was smooth and enjoyable. I think differently about food now. After breaking one hundred bad habits, I'm grateful for a fresh nutritional start! Though I still have thoughts of eating junk, I don't physically crave it! I've discovered that thoughts and cravings are very different. Now when a think about eating a donut, I consider much more than the taste. I access the nutritional value or lack of and drive right on by with a better plan of making a healthy smoothie as soon as I get back home.

Me. Thirty pounds gone forever!

I get a bit emotional as I begin to express the gratitude that is brimming inside me. My cup runneth over and I'm sipping out of the saucer! Celebrating Kimberly's wedding, 30 pounds lighter (than I've been in 15 years) was a thrill! It's been a really long time since I felt pretty. After years of watching me struggle and battle bad habits and excess weight, my husband and children are so proud of me! I'm smiling a lot these days. I'm still getting use to my reflection in the mirror. Thirty pounds has made a big difference in me.

I've always loved to cook! Click here to read my blog. When you get there click on this same picture and read my juice journey from the beginning...., "Bye, bye pie!"

It's been almost 1 month since I finished the juice fast I began in January. I'm happy to report I have not gained any of the 30 pounds back but I still have 30 more pounds to lose. So, on Monday, March 1st, I will begin a second juice fast. The last few weeks I've enjoyed eating and making healthy choices but I'm really looking forward to the simplicity and freedom of juicing. This may sound odd but when you've made up you mind to do this, food no longer occupies your mind. You have a lot of time and energy to spend on other things.

That's me last football season (30 pounds heavier) cheering on the team with my grand-girls!

Last year my daughter Beth, snapped the picture above.  Pictures like this don't usually exist. I'm certain I would have deleted it if my grand daughters had not been in it. Now, I'm happy to have this photo. It will serve as a good, before pic. I will look forward to taking another one this fall. I'm convinced the difference will be dramatic.

On January 16th, six days into the juice fast, I had already lost 10 pounds. I could see the difference and was encouraged!
I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to share this experience. It really has been life changing. I've learned so much and can only imagine the new discoveries which lie ahead. As I began the second phase of this juice fast. It is my hope to lose 30 more pounds by my birthday in May. That would be 60 pounds. I can not think of a better gift! It's a big goal but I've never been more convinced that I can do it. Why? Because I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 Though I have failed time and time again. God's promises stand true for anyone at anytime. Like a treasure hidden in plain sight, His truths have never ceasing power in the lives of those who believe Him.  

If you too, have found yourself a slave to food and have gained excess weight from unhealthy eating. You too, might want to watch, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and prayerfully consider juicing and eating more vegetables and fruits in the days ahead. I'm thanking God, in advance, for helping us all rediscover the delicious foods He designed to fuel, refresh and restore our bodies to health.

Monday, October 1, 2012

What am I looking for?

It's a quiet Monday morning, a peaceful retreat after a fun filled, full to the brim weekend...well except for Abby's persistent yapping at the back door, whether she out or in. After posting about the Wildcats victory last weekend, I caught up with a few friends on their blogs, they too are coaches wives. On one the blogs there was a thought provking post, which mentioned a song called, 'Show me what I'm looking for." by Carolina Liar. I read. Googled the song and listened. Got up and went outside to paint. It was there that God began to whisper to me. I went back inside and wrote:

Precious, friend. God has richly blessed us. I am moved to tears as I ponder His goodness to both of us. He has given so much. Husbands that love us. Vibrant children that bring great joy to our lives. Family and friends to travel lifes journey. Inquiring minds, capable hands and willing hearts that drive us to be the best women we can be! Yet we still feel something is missing. That there is more to life. We ask throughout our lives, ‘Who am I?’ and ‘What is my purpose in life?’

Though God has made each of us to be unique, one of a kind indiviuals we all ask these same questions and like a good father, He answers the cries of our heart. Like all of God’s truths, they lie hidden in plain sight, too simple to believe. Yet incredibly powerful for those who do: “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33

I am discovering that the more I consume myself with Him, the more clearly my path becomes. Life is full of many good things, all of which can easily distract me from the one thing I can’t live without. When He formed us in our mother’s womb, He, like every artist signed His creation with His name. It is Him that we are looking for and in Him we will find everything we desire. “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matthew 7:7

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and allowing me to share mine.

I love you.

Thank you, Father for communicating with me. Wow! I love being able to talk to the Creator of the Universe, but nothing is sweeter than hearing from you. May your children, who are called by your name become increasingly aware of your Presence and the power of living our lives according to your Word...your heavenly truths and your will for us, in Christ Jesus. May we seek you first, above all things. May everything pale in comparison to you. May we find everything we are looking for when we find you.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

How I survived.

Last Sunday night, our daughter Kim won the title of Lone Survivor, in the 24th season of CBS show, Survivor - One World. She also won a millon bucks! Kim, played a brillant game. Some think, one of the best! Though she won 4 immunity challenges during the course of her 39 days on the island of Somoa, her real strategy was to "delight" in each and every one of the 17 castaway's, building a relationship of geniune concern and respect. It wasn't easy starving and being sleep deprived but she had help. She wasn't alone. Here is how I, survived my daughter's adventure.

On the day CBS contacted Kim last July and said they had offered a place to a girl but she had taken a job and said she couldn't go. They told Kim they were giving her until 10:30pm and if she declined, Kim was going instead. With that in mind, I sat praying at my kitchen table for their decision but God interrupted me by saying, "it isn't their decision, it's mine". Suddenly my concerns melted as I realized what He was saying. Whatever happened it was His choice! Just as in times past He cloaked me in His peace and assured me I could trust Him. Nine days later when she was flying to Los Angeles, my heart, soul and mind celebrated knowing He went with her.

Shortly after her arrival there her phone was turned off and we lost contact with her, but through the Holy Spirit we were in constant communication with our Father, who was constantly in touch with her. It was a comforting connection. Every evening when the sun was setting (our favorite time of the day), I'd pray for Kim. With tears and heartfelt gratitude for God's presence, power and protection I would celebrate with her. Knowing the joy her adventurous heart was having! Occasionally, in the quiet of the night, God would wake me and nudge me into prayer. With no physical way of knowing what my precious daughter needed, it brought me great peace to know God did.

When Beth flew to the island my pleasure and prayers doubled knowing God was there for them both! Loving, encouraging and eqquipping them for the days ahead. Giving Beth the gift of adventure as well! When she returned home it was so exciting to hear her news and celebrate with Thanksgiving all that God had and was doing.

Back home, Kim recovered well from starvation and sleep deprivation. Thirty nine days is a long time to endure so many extremes. Mentally, physically and emotionally but God safely guided her through. She decided not to tell us the outcome of the game (but wanted us be surprised), she did tell us stories and about the friends she had made and that we would be proud of her and the way she played. She couldn't have been more right!

With great anticipation we silently counted the days until February 14th, to watch Kim on Survivor One World. It had been a long wait. What a thrill it was to watch her week after week slowly and quietly emerge into a princess warrior. With determination and focus, she strategically maneuvered her way through this game with savvy and grace. Building relationships and treating everyone with love and respect. Though many were blindsided and some were hurt, she outlasted, outwitted and outplayed them all. Competing with the heart of an athlete, week after week, we were wowed!

This however, was not a new occurrence, for our children have amazed us on numerous occasions. In fact, there have been many, but the highlights are: Beth has bravely followed her husband Nate, into uncharted waters and single handily held down the fort, more times than I can remember. Victoriously battling exhaustion, fear and loneliness with strength and beauty. (;
Clint, obediently heeded the call and served in the USMC for 5 years. Spending two at the West Wing door of the White House as a Presidential guard. Kim, learned to guide rafts through white water, camp in the wilderness for weeks at a time and spent months in Thailand, teaching English to little girls in a remote village.Wow, again!!! Where did these brave kids come from? Apparently, when they were growing up and we told them they could do anything, they believed us! (Read ' Welcome Home Son ', on

Last weekend, in NYC, surrounded by her family and friends, Kim was radiant! Watching her at the live finale, in the Ed Sullivan Theatre, was surreal, but God's peace was still in place as it had been the entire time. Hearing hear name called and watching the jumbilant expression of joy transform Mike's face, is something I will never forget! Nor, Kim walking off the stage into one gigantic family embrace! Later, on tv I loved getting to watch Kim's reaction!
Truly, priceless! In fact, we've watched several times, rejoicing in God's abundance.

A few days later, back home and reading Jesus Calling, I was I awe once again as I read:
As you sit quietly in my presence, remember that I am a God of abundance. I will never run out of resources; my capacity to bless you is unlimited. You live in a world of supply and demand, where necessary things are often scarce. Even if you personally have enough, you see poverty in the world around you. It is impossible for you to comprehend the lavishness of my provisions: the fullness of my glorious riches. Through spending time in my presence, you gain glimpses of my overflowing vastness. These glimpses are tiny for taste of what you will experience eternally in heaven. Even now you have access to as much of me as you have faith to receive. Rejoice in my abundance – living by faith, not by sight.Philippians 4:19; second Corinthians 5:7

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Going Steady!.....part II

Never would we date again and break up only once for a couple of hours, our junior year in high school. We were as different as could be, but exactly what God knew we would need. Mike was a hardworking, intelligent, honor student/ athlete. I was a fun loving, silly, creative type that loves to talk! We were inseperable. Always talking on the phone, passing notes or writing letters (which we still have).

We graduated from high school in 1973. Mike, an outstanding football player, was offered scholarships to U of Texas, Baylor but accepted a full ride to the U of Houston ( mainly because of Coach Don Todd, who he still loves like family). Mike was excited to be a Houston Cougar and with my greatest ambition being to be by his side, I enrolled and was accepted by the 'hair on my chinny chin chin'. That fall of '73 was fun, eye opening, life changing and difficult especially when Mike's dad, Don Spradlin, died in a tragic plane crash. He was a good man, that we will never stop missing. It was sad time for Mike and his mother Joyce, but he found comfort in his new family, the freshman football team and coaches at UH. We still have a signed football they presented to him after the game he hurried back to play in. I made him laugh, washed his clothes, went to his games and ran downstairs to the snack bar every night to get him and roomate Kevin Rollwage, a bedtime snack. Two cheeseburgers and two chocolate shakes. Each! .....every night.

Mike had a great college career.

Christmas 1975, our engagement became official. Can you imagine my excitement? My sister, Lynnette, also engaged and I excitedly began to dream of a double wedding the following Christmas. Our church would be beautifully decorated. We have all the same family and would be perfect! Our mother was delighted. Mike, overhearing our conversation, quickly informed me that our wedding would have to be after the 1977 Cotton Bowl Classic, because the Houston Cougars would be playing in it!


Jennifer and Rodney, were newlyweds when I first met them. They were a delightful couple and we were so happy to have them on our coaching staff. Rodney is an excellent coach and we shares several chapters of life with them. We made a lot of treasured memories and are grateful for their friendship. Rodney, now a Head Coach and Jennifer a mother of three, live a full making a difference in the lives around them.
Today, I recieved an email from Jennifer.

Dear Friends,
I am sending out this email to all who are local and are in my contact list. I want to share a story with you about a precious little girl and her family who chose to make every second of everyday for 10 months count! I have had the privilege to be part of an amazing journey and on the planning team for sMiles 4 Sammy.
The story behind sMiles for Sammy started February 28, 2011 with a precious child named Samantha Rose Scott. Her daddy coaches football with Rodney at Vista Ridge. Sammy was born with Trisomy 18 and wasn't expected to make it to term. She reached that milestone! There was a possibility that she could be stillborn. She wasn't and reached the milestone of getting to go home with her family! She fought everyday for 10 months reaching amazing milestones that far surpassed anything the doctors expected! On Christmas morning, her fight ended. Sammy was a bright light for all who met her! She changed more lives in 10 months than many of us do in years! We are using Sammy's story to reach others through the platform of "What can you do in 10 months?" The possibilities are endless...through helping special needs children have a place to play sports without any barriers, to helping people see that each day is a gift~make it count!
I am inviting you to join in on an amazing event to help raise money to build an all abilities baseball field in Williamson County for children with special needs.
There are several ways that you can help:
*Visit our website: to read more about Sammy's story.
*"Like" us on facebook!

My heart was touched by her words. I wish I could have told her so while visiting on our porch, but that not being possible I sent her a  email hug! 

Jennifer dear, I've just read your email and my eyes are brimming with tears. I love the way you told Sammy's story and the uplifting action you have taken to celebrate her precious life. I trust God will use it all to heal the hearts of all who love her. I was touched by your sweet spirit and wanted to tell you. Jennifer, you and Rodney have a special place in our hearts, we will always love you and are honored to be your friends. Your lives are reflecting Christ's unconditional love. A much needed light! I am so proud of you,Jennifer! The respectful wife, loving mother and forgiving friend you are. You let His light and truth illuminate your corner of the world. Mike and I are so proud of both you and Rodney, knowing the difference you are make in your comunnity and the precious lives of the children you are raising. We know how busy and crazy life can be with 2 girls and a boy! There is rarely a moment of solitude, quiet or order but we want to assure you that you will never regret giving it your all! Your lives are moving at a non-stop pace now, a bit like bicycling through a tunnel, but keep seeking God, admiring your husband and equipping your children for the future, then one day you will suddenly ride out of that tunnel. Exhausted and victorious! It was during these hectic years we learned the power and the reality of God's words, "we can do all things through Christ Jesus, who strengthens us"!

We treasure the memories we share and always look forward to hearing what God is doing in your lives. He is so good!:)


Friday, March 30, 2012

Calling God By His First Name

It’s guest post Friday!

Here’s one from Alicia Yost who blogs about being a mom at AmericasNextTopMommy.

Calling God By His First Name

I once went to a church where a woman, a self-confirmed prayer expert, called another woman out on the way she prayed.“I say this in love, but you are praying incorrectly. You can’t just talk and not address your heavenly father by name. You must say, ‘Lord’ and then follow it up with your request. I wouldn’t want your prayers to go unanswered.”The woman who’d been called out went red in the face because, you see, this had been pointed out during a prayer group and now everyone was staring at her. She started to cry.“I’m just trying to be helpful. There is a right way and a wrong way to pray,” said the expert.I didn’t see what the woman had done wrong. I usually pray the exact same way she had, but apparently we’ve both been doing it all wrong. Obviously, God is very picky when you dial his number. You must include a prefix code of “thou” or “Lord”. If you don’t, he will assume you are a crank call and hang up in your ear and then screen your calls.I was sure glad that I hadn’t spoken up in prayer because my prayers are almost always of such a personal nature that I often times start mid-sentence. I’m also prone to what I call “spurt prayers.” I will sometimes pray in tiny little spurts when I’m thinking about things so I don’t forget them later. When I’m driving by the school I say, “please look after my kids today as they go through their school day. Remind them that you are always with them. And that you’re watching so they better not pick their noses and eat their boogers.”Then I start writing out a mental grocery list.Other times, when I’m in line at a red light, I’ll look over at someone who just looks like they are having a bad day and I’ll say, “I don’t know this person, but he sure does look like he needs you right now. Please follow him wherever he goes and fill him with peace.”Then I turn up the radio and start jamming to “Moves Like Jagger.” Like I said, spurts.Later, when I have time to devote, I will pray in earnest. These prayers are most always not about something I want or need but about giving thanks.“Thank you for this beautiful day, okay so maybe it’s cloudy but it’s still beautiful. Thank you for the fact that I woke up at all. Thank you for my silly husband and sweet children, my friends and family. Thank you for my home and our security. I don’t deserve these things above anyone else, and why you chose me to bestow them on while there are people living in refugee camps, I will never know but I thank you. Thank you for my health (remind me to eat more fiber) and for loving me when I’m completely un-loveable and unable to even love myself. Thank you for pursuing me so ferociously when I played so hard to get and for second chances and for grace that I will never fully comprehend. Thank you for all of it, everything you’ve ever given and will give me. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”Sometimes I pretend that God and I Skype. Like we have a 3:00 meeting and I sit down, tuck my hair behind my ears, and say, “It’s me……..”. He always smiles. Sometimes he winks while he points his finger at me. I usually do this when I need some serious advice or when I’m super confused about something. He always listens but sometimes he doesn’t stay on task (my task). One time, during one of our conversations, he was way off base.If you’ve never heard from God, let me tell you how he talks to me. It’s like a thought in my head that pops in from out of nowhere and is so loud that it sounds like a loud speaker. It’s always unreasonable and so foreign that it’s very clear that the thoughts do not belong to me. I most always feel invaded. The thoughts will play over and over again, like a flat tire that keeps on thumping until I finally stop and tend to it.“Hey, remember that girl Danielle that you used to work with, like, ten years ago? Maybe you should call her out of the blue. She used to invite you to church all of the time and was really nice to you!” he said.“What? Are you crazy? I haven’t talked to her in, like, well ten years. I don’t know where she is, what she’s doing, how to reach her. Let’s please get back to my problems, shall we?”“You could probably find her on Facebook you know? Look her up, Look Her Up, LOOK.HER.UP!”“AAHHH! If I will, would you kindly stop shouting in my head?”“Maybe. Tell her that you appreciated how she brought you to church and how you didn’t find me then but eventually you did. You found me, you looooooove me (I imagined him fanning his face) and that she was part of your journey, and I used her for that and want to keep using her for great things.”“This is crazy. She’s going to think I’m crazy.”“So?” he said.I got up, opened my browser, and logged into Facebook all the while rolling my eyes. This is really pretty stupid you know. I let out a long sigh as I thought to myself. I don’t have time for this. I need help. I need advice. I need guidance. Isn’t that what God is for? Isn’t he supposed to help me? I was just praying for his guidance and instead I’m here running crazy errands. Good grief!I typed in Danielle’s name, and she immediately popped up. I sent her a friend request and a message.“Hi Danielle. You’re going to think I’ve completely lost my mind but I just wanted to say ‘hi’ and tell you how much I appreciate how you took me to church with you back when because, while I didn’t know God then, I do now (he’s looking over my shoulder right now and tapping his foot). Please know that he loves you, and he used you to bring me to him. He wants to use you again.”I sent the message, half embarrassed. She’s going to think I’ve completely fallen off my rocker, I thought. I went on with my day and, a few hours later, when I checked Facebook there was a note from Danielle. She had accepted my friend request and her message said this:“I left the church about five years ago. I was deeply hurt by my many things that happened with our pastor and haven’t been close to God since then. Last week, I went to church for the first time since I left and just this morning I was praying to God, for him to let me know if I was doing the right thing by going back. Would it be okay this time? Would I be able to return and start fresh? I’m writing this with tears falling onto my keyboard. Thank you SO much for messaging me!”I rolled my office chair away from the desk and sat very still. Did that just happen? In one fell swoop God had answered both of our prayers. He had distracted me from myself and refocused my purpose while simultaneously reassuring Danielle.And I didn’t even say “thou.”

(For more great stuff from Alicia, check out her blog at AmericasNextTopMommy.)