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Panic at The Restaurant

You’ve heard of Panic at the Disco?

I panicked at the restaurant.

We went out to eat twice last weekend.  the first time wasn’t so tough. It was a new Austin place outside of the city, rural really. It’s called Proof and Cooper.  The outside was so cool.  Rusty tin roof,  lots of land.

tree lights

 

Inside, you order and then sit.  There was a bar and live music.  Pretty standard Austin stuff.  The best part about Austin is the people (so friendly) and the Vibe.  By that I mean, there were people there in swimsuits.  There were people there in cut off shorts and t-shirts.  I saw tattoos and piercings and dreadlocks. There were kids and parents and groups and cats and chickens.  That last part is no joke.  Here’s a picture of my daughter with one of the baby kittens.

nat and cat

There were 5 kittens and we just couldn’t get enough of them.  Everyone was coming around and chatting about the kittens.  All ages. Some with their cocktails, just wandering around the outside space talking about the rooster that was in the tree. That part is real too.  I swear.

The next day I looked up the place on Facebook and saw that the person playing guitar there was actually “famous” in certain circles.  We talked to him while we were there because he came out to see the kittens and actually laid down on the ground and let a kitten climb on his chest.  My friend’s daughter likes to sing so he asked her about that and said, “I’ll let you sing!” He was so nice.  And calm.  And apparently “important”.  He is the son of some famous music people and he was in the movie, “Walk the Line” and a bunch of other stuff.  His name is Waylon Payne.  See, you have to be careful in Austin.  Famous people hang here but they blend in which is the whole point.

Ordering at this restaurant was easy because it was farm to table.  I had a salad with tomatoes and avocado and fizzy water with a lime.  Yum. It helped that there was a lot going on and it wasn’t all about the food.

However, the next night, Jeff and I went to a restaurant sort of because we “had to”.  We had time to kill.  It was dinner time.  We were far from home but had to pick up our son soon…you get the point.  So already, I felt like I was not in control of my situation.  See, I had it all planned, we were going to go to Chipotle.  We were on that side of town (not our usual side) and I haven’t had Chipotle in a year.  I read on the Whole 30 that you can have the carnitas bowl so I was beyond excited.  I was thinking about the carnitas and the guac.  Literally, running to the door.  We get in and see the sign.  NO CARNITAS AVAILABLE.  There is a shortage. They have stopped working with their suppliers because of the way they treat the animals.  They are looking for a supplier that meets their requirements.  You can google it.  It’s a thing. You guys…I literally almost cried.

We went to a steak joint.  Because we are in Texas.  As I looked at the menu, genuine panic came over me.  All the memories of onion stacks and nachos and beer and wine and french fries…the smells, the music, the dim lighting. Ugh. The menu was not confusing.  Oh no, it was not.  I have learned to know what my body needs to feel good.  THERE WAS NOTHING ON THE MENU FOR ME.  If I was going to keep this Whole30 thing going, I needed to really THINK. And I was getting hungry.  The waiter said he was going to bring us a basket of bread and I jumped down his throat…NO!!!! He’s like, fine lady…chill.  I literally frowned the whole time and felt so testy.  We were sitting at the bar.  For the love of God…why???? I could see myself in the mirror…again, why???? And I looked so sad and confused.  I ordered a salad…no dressing…with a steak on it, dry…which means no rubs or sauces.  It was good and I felt full and I stuck to the plan.  But honestly, everything in the world is dripping in oil and cheese and sour cream and ranch dressing.  The good news is I survived.  And I will be better prepared next time.  I really like just eating at home now.

I have this thing.  I don’t want to be difficult.  I don’t want to special order stuff.  Maybe it goes back to when I was young and I didn’t like the McDonald’s onions on the cheeseburger so I would order it without onions and my family would have to pull the car over and wait for little Susie’s (I’m the youngest and only girl) cheeseburger.  (This is why Burger King is better for me – special orders don’t upset them.) My brothers still discuss it to this day.  I learned that just going with the flow makes people happy.  I like to make people happy.  Which leads to why sometimes I eat cake if someone makes it even if I don’t want it.  And why I say, “Sure, anything is fine!” as people order sausage on a pizza (yuk) or decide we need potato skins with bacon and cheese and sour cream.  I want to be easy and light.  I want to be cool. As LuAnn says, “Be cool.  Don’t be all, like, uncool.”

But here’s the thing I know now.  People thinking I’m easy breezy is no longer my goal.  It is not worth the bad feelings in my body.  I can say no and still be cool.  I think. Right?  I have a feeling some of you know what I’m talking about.  You don’t want to say no to your grandma’s cheesecake.  Or she won’t let you.  She stops just shy of shoving it down your throat!! The pressure and dirty looks from family if you are not stuffing your face…does this happen?  What if you ask for a dry steak and dressing on the side?  Do you hear the groans?  Do people tell you, “You used to be fun”?

WHY IS IT SO TOUGH???

It’s tough because it’s not just the food.  It’s the emotions, the memories, the patterns, the feelings, the history, the relationships, the connections.  It’s not just your body, it’s your brain and your heart and your soul.  Your spirit is wrapped up in this.  That’s why eating the “wrong things” can lead to depression and doubt and shame and guilt.  That’s why eating the “right things” takes a whole rewiring of our thinking.  Not just our thinking but our feeling.  You guys, it’s not easy.

My friend, Tricia, recommended the book Made to Crave.  Thank you Tricia!! I read it right away the day I got it.

Turns out, I’m not the only one who has ever struggled with all of this.
temptation

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

What’s next?

 

open palm

 

Okay. I have a whole bunch of exciting announcements.  Woo-hoo!

I have a new role with Holy Yoga. My title is “Instructor Training Enrollment Specialist”.  There are three of us on this team and we are thrilled to be able to serve the Lord in this way.  If someone goes to the website to become a Holy Yoga instructor and downloads the packet of information and starts the process, the next step is to set up a phone interview with one of the Enrollment Specialists.  It is such an honor to be able to speak to people as they are discerning what the Lord is calling them to do with their lives.  As you know, Holy Yoga has been extremely powerful in my life, helping me to know God more deeply and to worship in a new way.  Through the last few years, the Lord has transformed me from the inside out and Holy Yoga has been a huge part of that process.  The training, the community, the Bible studies, and the practice – whether teaching or attending a class, God continues to meet me on my mat.  I am grateful.

For those of you who may be interested, we have some amazing training programs. We train on the 95hr, 225hr, and 500hr levels, as well as multiple specialties and a unique Holy Yoga Therapy program. There is always room for growth and education within Holy Yoga and we want to extend an invitation to you. Come train with us – dig into our yoga resources, our in depth Bible Studies, and our expansive community. The door is wide open. You don’t have to have a yoga background or an amazing practice. You just need to be called.

Download an information packet at holyyoga.net and start your journey!

Feel free to reach out to me with any questions.  I’d love to talk to you about Holy Yoga!

I recently finished my Holy Yoga Master’s training and the Trauma Sensitive Holy Yoga training so if you are already an instructor and have questions about either of those, please reach out.  I have grown immensely through those trainings and I would love to share.  My hope is that I will be able to use the Trauma Sensitive Holy Yoga Training to teach Holy Yoga to survivors of sex trafficking here in Austin. If you want to follow what’s happening with that, please follow me on Facebook. (If you click on that word Facebook, it’s a live link and will direct you to the Great Big Yes Facebook page.) I will post updates there as the journey unfolds. I would be grateful if you would join me in prayer for The Refuge and for all the victims of sex trafficking and all the people working to rescue them.  Thank you.

Another amazing thing that is happening is something I want to SHOUT FROM THE ROOFTOPS! I get to be a part of the launch team for Jen Hatmaker’s new book, “For the Love” (comes out in August but you can pre-order).  That is wonderful in and of itself but here’s the KICKER!!! Jen has invited us all (500 of us!) to her house for a PARTY!! You guys…the one that was on HGTV when she was renovating it!! She lives right here near me in Texas! Woo hoo!! I’m pretty sure I’ll be posting A LOT of pictures so tune in on Instagram and Facebook. And just in case this has you worried about what I’m going to wear, don’t worry, these awesome ladies on the team already thought of that and I am covered.

for the love

 

Thank God for women who like to plan and make things.  All these crafty, organized, lovely women.  It’s really fun.  Also, see my palms in the picture, they are up and open!

It’s like we are saying, “I’m ready God, go ahead, give me some good stuff! Make me laugh and get excited and have new opportunities.  Bring me some good people who make shirts and who are kind and fun and invite me to some parties.”  Pretty good prayer, right?

Everything is not all t-shirts and parties though. Of course, there is all the usual stuff with kids and family and end of the school year and decorating a new home and repairing a whole lot of hail damage.  (Lord, the Texas weather lately, what the heck?)  We are all busy with life.  I guess that’s why I wanted to talk about living with palms open.  I never want to be too busy to be open to new things.  And I never want to be so reliant on what I have or what I’m doing that my fists are clenching tight to hold on, not allowing things to change.  

Or God forbid, I don’t want to live with my palms all balled up in a fist.  Palms open sounds easy but sometimes we forget and we look down and we have fists or we have our arms folded over our chests protecting our hearts. And then we go, wait, what happened? When did I become so closed off? Lord, help us to be open. Open our palms to receive and when it’s time, keep them open to let go.

When I first moved to Texas I felt so alive.  I was intensely aware of every person, every conversation, every moment.  I did not have any pre-conceived perception of anyone.  I had no expectations. I did not know anything. And it was BEAUTIFUL.

My palms were open.

I was needy. Literally, asking for handouts of information, knowledge, help. I was humble.

I was excited. Gladly meeting new people and engaging in conversation, I took my time.

I was ready.  Open to new things, new people, new experiences.  I was a beginner.

I have said Yes more times in this last year than ever before. And here I am saying yes again to a lot of new adventures. I have no idea what is going to happen next but I trust God knows.  As I move forward, I’m going to stick with what God taught me when I first got to Texas.

Be humble.

Take your time.

Don’t be afraid to be a beginner.

And also, when people call you ma’am it is not an insult.  It does not mean they think you are an old lady.  It’s a sign of respect in Texas. Embrace it.

I know I haven’t been posting as much here as in the past and I miss y’all.  It has been 5 years since I started the blog and for about four of those, I posted once a week.  At this point, posting that often is not possible.  I’ll still be posting here but if you want more updates hop on over to – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.  I’ll be there.  Thank you so much for sticking with me on this journey. I’m grateful.

I’ll leave you with this. This morning my husband and I tried something new – we went canoeing on Lady Bird Lake in Austin with our dog.  It was so great. I took this picture of my dog, Gus.  Isn’t he just the best?  He was so brave. Getting in that boat. He had to hang on of course so his palms are down but  I just know without a doubt, in his heart and in his spirit, his palms were open. He was ready.

gusboat

 

gusboat2

©2015 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

 

Not a New Year’s Resolution

I love clean slates and empty pages and new journals and blank spaces.

I like tidy houses and clutter free zones and organized pantries and closets with order.

I love these things but the truth is, I don’t have these things in my life.

Oh sure, I get the brand new journal but I can’t wait…I have to write in it…I try out different pens (Flairs are my favorite)  and write my name and doodle flowers and try my hand at poetry.  The empty page is just too inviting.  The blank space calls out to me…the new slate is not new for long. I can’t wait.

As for clean houses, they are pretty on Pinterest but I find them rather boring in real life.  I like to visit homes where there are newspapers on the coffee table and blankets on the couch…where I’m invited in to snuggle and get cozy with a cup of coffee, pushing the laundry to the side.  I like it when friends just hand over the pie plate and a fork while they sit down with their fork too and we share the leftover pie.  I like it when there are piles of books and photographs and games.  I prefer stepping over shoes in the hallway.  It reminds me that the people there are alive and are coming and going and it’s oh so good to have somewhere to go from and to come home to.

I would love an organized pantry and I’ve tried but honestly, I just need the peanut butter and the chocolate chips at the front.  In case there is an emergency.  Other than that, I basically come home from the store and shove it all in.  It’s okay because if someone comes over, I know where we keep the wine and chocolate.  Which obviously makes me a great hostess.

With regards to closets, I’ve been getting some practice here with our move.  This is our second rental and soon we move into our “real” house.  My friend called it our “real, forever” house but now I know there is no such thing.  It’s okay.  It’s going to be my “for now” house and it’s going to be home.  I can’t wait.  As I clean the clutter and donate clothes and try to simplify I realize it will never look like a magazine, it will never be color coordinated.  But I just don’t even care.  Honestly, I have my go-to’s…some old,  like my favorite jeans and some new, like my cowboy boots…I have my softest cotton shirts and my flannel pjs.  I love to look at fashion and I love to browse stores and Pinterest and flip through Vogue but when it comes down to it, I’ll take my husband’s cozy 20 year old sweatshirt over anything else.   The move has taught me I don’t need much.

So this will not be a New Year’s resolution post about how I’m going to do better, be better, clean more or have more order in my life.

This year I will not resolve to lose weight or work out more or vow to never eat a cookie.

See, this past year has been a BIG one for me and my family.  Our move to Texas has been such a blessing.  This year, with this move, I have learned to really and truly surrender to God’s plan for me and to trust Him.  I’ve learned about His provision and His protection.  I’ve learned that His plans are much bigger and better and way more beautiful than mine.

I used to think that I needed to do something for Him…you know, like perform for God.  Not necessarily to earn His love but to make Him proud.  Like with a parent, I wanted to please Him.  I still want to please Him but it’s different now.  I know that I already do please Him.  He loves me. Not because of what I do but because I am His.

Brennan Manning explains that sometimes people get off track with their spirituality and let personal responsibility replace personal response.  The emphasis is on what I do rather than what God is doing. 

I read those words and I thought, “Oh wow. I’ve done that.”

Paul Tillich describes God’s grace as a voice saying,  “You are accepted, accepted by that which is greater than you, and the name of which you do not know.  Do not ask for the name now; perhaps you will find it later.  Do not try to do anything now; perhaps later you will do much. Do not seek for anything, do not perform anything, do not intend anything.  Simply accept the fact that you are accepted.” 

Can we believe this together this year? Will you join me?

We are accepted with our messy closets and unorganized homes. We are also accepted if we have very organized homes and clean, color coordinated closets.

We are accepted with our extra 10 pounds and our less than stellar exercise habits. We are also accepted if we work out every day and are at our ideal fighting weight.

We are accepted when we can’t wait and we start scribbling and doodling with no plan or purpose. We are also accepted if we always have plan and purpose and patience.

We are accepted when we aren’t striving and doing and achieving and working for God. We are also accepted when we fall into old patterns and start to perform.

He loves us no matter what.  Our only job is to let Him.

This year, I will remember that it is God who is leading this dance.  I am grateful to be invited to dance with Him.  He doesn’t care if I know the mamba or the 2 step or the waltz…He is not judging or condemning or keeping score.  He is asking, “Will you dance with me?” and He is patiently awaiting my response.

This year, and every year from now on…heck, every single morning from now on…I will imagine Him asking me that same question and I will respond…

YES! I WILL DANCE WITH YOU! YES! YES! GREAT BIG YES!

Happy New Year Friends!

 

let god

©2014 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™, All Rights Reserved

Picture from Pinterest