Stop the Bullies: Be your own Lobbyist

It is your right and civil obligation to join with good men and women in honorable organizations to increase your capacity to make your voice heard in Government. You also have the right and civil obligation to be well informed in order to speak your mind. So allow me to introduce you to the wonderful world of Heritage Action (HAction).mike-needham-demanded-change

First of all, standing against tyrant-progressive agendas is not bullying. Disagreeing with fervor is not bullying. And speaking for yourself, lobbying independently as a citizen is not bullying no matter what organization you choose to join with in order to keep yourself well informed. Well, let me rephrase that last part: No matter which sensible organization you join. 

Another way to be well informed is to know what the Progressives are doing to be organized and how they are now working to take on Conservatives who are tired of being bullied. Check out the following to see how they operate: 

HAction understands how to #FrameTheDebate to be effective in connecting with legislators. Because HAction stands for freedom, for transparency, and is notoriously thorough in discussing issues the HAction team members can usually present both sides on an issue, no matter how wrong one side is, for HAction team members embrace the opportunity for discourse in foundational principles steeped in the United States Constitution. 

Reagan Goverments 1st Duty.pngThose I know in HAction are usually calm and not prone to obnoxious outbursts. They speak well. They believe in the grassroots individual being equal to taking on responsibility to become self-educated on subjects that are of concern to the nation. HAction leadership trusts You and Me, The We in the people, to help keep legislators informed.

Together, we work to keep information flowing to our neighbors, our friends, and especially to our members of Congress. HAction team members, Sentinels, are all about being free to choose, not being coerced or “nudged” into doing things against our will




My Love Letter to 26.2 CrossFit

This post is dedicated to the joy and love I feel for my Coaches and teammates at 26.2 CrossFit in Rockledge, Florida. 

Two years ago I discovered 26.2 CrossFit. It took me two months to get up the courage to call and make the commitment to go to a class. I had, as Coach Allie describes it, stalked the box online and driven past it a few times before actually calling him to commit to a three-class-free visit. The moment he assured me I would not throw-up in his box I knew I would be committed to the process. 

The Coaches

Allie in Action Skills and Drills

Thanks Allie, for making it so easy for me go to the playground. Thank you for the ATLAS SHRUGGED 3 WoD, for the Marine Corp Marathon T-shirts you donated to my VFWA Rocket Post 4534 and for 26.2 CrossFit & Rockledge Barbell Club for working with us on the Stop 22 shirts. Thanks for taking my initial telephone call, for being so delightfully charming that you drew me into the box without reservation. Thanks for your sincerity, your kindness, your easy-breezy yet firm resolve in coaching style. Thanks for pressing me in such a positive way to do more than I thought I could.

Atlas Shrugged 3 WoD: April 12, 2014

3 rounds of

  • 14 dead lifts
  • 12 cleans
  • 9 shoulder to overheads. 
  • Weight should be 80% of your jerk and there is a 10 calorie row penalty for letting go of the bar during the triplet. 

Very Special Thanks to my Coach Shane. The perfect first CrossFit coach for me, you made it very easy for me to stick with the Endurance class three times a week and not want to flee away in tears or terror. You gave me the space I needed to move forward when I was ready and you always let me know just what I should do when I wanted to ease up. My favorite memories will always be those times when I not only surprised myself by doing something I had never been able to do before but it surprised you as well. The look on your face, the slightly raised eyebrows with a hmmm still makes me giggle. Thank you for encouraging me to embrace rowing on my off days! Thanks for enduring my dumb looks, hateful face, and #NotRollingMyEyes. 

Todd Tom Shane Sapphire

Lauri 2016 UprisingThanks to my Coach Lil’ Miss Lauri! Your infectious attitude, your competitive spirit, and your joy for CrossFit was and still is totally inspiring! Your continuous encouragement is extremely appreciated. Your happy squeals for the successes that come my way are like gold medals around my neck. Thanks for honking and cheering me on when you see me running. Whenever you are around a WoD it is always a P-A-R-T-Y.  A work-it-hard party, but a party nonetheless. (tee hee)

Coach Jamie – you are my rowing inspiration forever. I remember the first time I saw you row against Allie and your technique stuck in my brain. Knowing you and Coach Lance are Marines always made me want to work hard and not be a wimp, well, at least not publicly. 

Coach Marc – you are the wild warm-up guy that has challenged my abilities. The work-out before the work-out man. Thanks so much for your Go Ruck attitude. Thanks for letting me work up to your warm-up antics. You are awesome!

Nil and Kiel - Strongman Coaches

Coaches Nil and Kiel (Rockledge Barbell Club at 26.2 CrossFit– I wish I had more time to Strongman train with you. Thanks for teaching me to improve my deadlift significantly. The last WoD I did with 2 minutes of deadlifts was awesome because you took the time on a Saturday to work with me! (Yeah, I still need major work but the DLs were much improved thanks to my socks.

I also want to mention two substitute coaches when I first started. They are Paul H., the equivalent of Captain Awesome from CHUCK, and the truly adorable Alex G. They were so incredible sweet to me, the little old, grey haired lady when I started. Like Coach Jamie, Coach Paul is with me when I row and Coach Alex is in my head every time I have to do squats, especially air squats. Thanks guys!

The Teammates

A special shoutout to Strongman Reed Tompkins! You are amazing in the box and out in the community. I am a better person for having gotten to know you, your work ethic and your business ethic. 

Thank you to every one of my teammates! To all of you in the 5:30 a.m. class seeing you finish strong always made me want to do the same. Mike T. who always kills it. Danielle and Mark Q. who never quit. Jen H. for her scrapes and bruises and blistered hands and those awesome shoulders and arms and the Prancing Pony, Frankenstein Penguin Walk. Oh, and Mark Q. for his donuts and fried chicken, too. (Yeah. That is still so not right to put in front of the Chubby Chick, dude!)

The Biggest Hurrah goes to my 6:30 a.m. teammates that have come and gone over these past two years. I miss my first year mates a lot! Thank you Gabe and Michel for being my best cheerleaders ever. Thank you Linda S. for always coming back for me when you finished your run while I shuffled to the finish. To Sara G. and Karen R. for the team spirit, eye rolls and laughter. I always measured myself to you and found great joy in trying to keep up. As you improved, so did I if I kept up by half. To Mikey K. and that head of hair! Your example of just get in and git ‘er done with a game face focus was impressive. To Slim Tim, you always made me smile and made the WoD lighthearted. And Darc with that Mary Tyler-Moore adorableness even after running five miles before the WoD began. 

Slim Tim Bday Killer WoDDarc

Sapphire, Marlana and Sylvia and that speedy dude, Tom (who runs 3+ rounds to my 1) and Jason and Aaron, you have brought me such joy in the morning! And Todd, the consistent! (Where have you been lately dude?)  

Priscilla and Brandi: you little, adorable creatures are just the cutest Strong Mamas. Totally inspirational watching you the past two years and now you are killing it on the lifting!

To all of you on the Saturday Partner WoDs for letting me be the best me I could be as the slowest and the last place finisher every time, thank you. And to those in the other classes that I popped into on occasion, your patience and tolerance for my skill-set was very much appreciated. Thank you so much for never judging me and for the encouragement to keep going as you watched me finish the WoD  (Rosa, Sarah M., Claire, Evan, Natalieand so many others!) 

Heartfelt Gratitude to Natalie and Shane for putting together the lovely farewell party at Allie’s house. The Chubby Chick cake was simply out-of-this- world-delicious! 

fat chick cake smal

Thanks to my 26.2 CrossFit Coaches and with encouragement from my Teammates, I have run two 2 Milers, two 5Ks and I did the CrossFit Uprising 2016 Challenge, where I killed it on the weight pulling thing and the tires. (Yeah, the two judges at those stations were surprised too.)


Again, my heart is so grateful for the 26.2 CrossFit vibe (as the newest Coach, Kyle Z., calls it). My life is so much fuller for the blood, sweat, tears, blisters, fears, pains, joys, and successes we have shared. I will truly miss being at the playground with you!

Natalie and Me
Until we meet again! God bless and keep you!

Mother HOA, May I?

Chelsea Park HOA vs First Amendment

Having lived in my “deed restricted” community since 2006 and having placed political signs in my yard each election cycle, and having seen political signs in my neighborhood all these years, guess what came in my mailbox this week? 

Anti Political Signs HOA

So here is the June 1995 Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions of Chelsea Park, retrieved from the World Wide Web sign decree in this screenshot: 

Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 11.09.26 PM

Who would ever think that section was meant to stifle free speech during an election cycle? Who would think that would be used to deny Chelsea Park Residents their First Amendment Right to place a sign to support of a Candidate during a Primary Election Cycle or to override the United States Constitution

Seriously. When did the HOA decide to enforce this rule and apply it to Political Signs during a Primary Election Cycle? Especially THIS political cycle?

How is it the HOA allows that one can put up all sorts of holiday decorations and holiday signs throughout the year but not a Candidate sign during an election cycle? And how is it one can put up a Football or Baseball Team Flag but not a sign for a Candidate during an election cycle?  

Did someone say Mother HOA, May I? 

Perhaps I need to get a flag for my Candidate made and fly it from a flag pole like the Sport flags or banners I see in some yards. Or maybe getting a partial wrap on my truck so I can park it on the street or my driveway for my Candidate is in order?

Mother HOA, May I?

Oh wait. I hate that game. So allow me to #FrameTheDebate by asking some other questions:

  1. Why would any HOA Board of Directors stifle any resident from exercising the right and moral obligation to uphold civic standards by being Politically Active during any election cycle? 
  2. Why has the HOA Board of Directors chosen this particular year to attack political yard signs during the most critical Republican Primary in Florida? 
  3. Why, when my candidate’s sign has been up for over one month’s time, is this now an issue when Absentee/Early voting ballots are being sent out on January 30th? 
  4. Did a neighbor complain?
  5. Does the current HOA Rule Enforcer have a Political Sign issue? (We all have our issues.)
  6. Was it the original intent of the Covenant/Rules writers to kill a homeowners unalienable right to exercise the 1st Amendment during any campaign season?
  7. How does the HOA pick and choose which signs are yard worthy for display outside of the for sale-for rent restriction? 

Honestly, it has never occurred to me that placing my candidate(s) sign on my personal property during an election cycle was a violation of the sacred HOA covenants. After all, seasonal items are placed in someone’s yard all year round because like I said, we all have our issues that mean something to us in their season. 

When will Bill Posey Frame the Debate to Reclaim America?

The phrase “the system is broken” when it comes to Congress makes me irate. The problem is too many Politicians are Corrupt and Abusing Power for Personal Gain. It appears they, miscreant politicians, are the ones employing sophistry in by trying break honorable men and women who are working to reclaim America.

I keep looking to my representatives, especially Bill Posey (R), to stand out as a leaders in framing the debate regarding the Washington Cartel holding the system hostage with the phraseology “broken budget process.”  After all, Republicans are in charge, not the Democrats. And my representative, Bill Posey, should expose any Republican working to pass bills favoring the Progressive agenda. Bill Posey should name the names of those behind close doors, negotiating with Democrats, far from public oversight and transparent, open debate. 

The huge Omnibus bill was not critical. An Omnibus bill is never essential or necessary to getting things done on the hill.  The Omnibus Bill  is and continues to be perpetuated by those who are THE BROKEN SYSTEM and by those who do not frame the debate to stop it.

The Shutdown, to stop totalitarianism, is never a bad thing. It should have been used to protect taxpayers from 1.1 Trillion in spending that burdens taxpayers. The Shutdown should be used EVERY time to press forward with a Conservative Agenda. Bill Posey needs to learn how to frame that debate if he is serious about his Libertarian-leaning Republican claims as a financially conservative guy. 

Shutting down the government to push for smaller, more responsible spending in government is not a bad thing. Therefore Posey must lead from the front, not behind, in teaching his constituents that fact.

Shutting down the government is the responsibility of Congress, of which Bill Posey is member. The onus is on Congress to effectively use the Power of the Purse to stop any Totalitarian from living out of taxpayer pockets while bankrupting America. Congress can and must have the will to shut down the government, just as it must have the will to force Obama to veto bill after bill to reclaim America thus allowing Obama to solidify his Anti-American agenda with the swish of his pen. 

Please understand that I, with many others in Florida, really want to support Bill Posey in any well-stated conservative position that he adequately frames for debate. But he must articulate what he will do, as a l-e-a-d-e-r, to reclaim America from Progressive Totalitarians.

  • What are you doing or What will you do as a LEADER to limit the size and scope of the federal government and return authority to states and to the American people?
  • What are you doing or What will you do as a LEADER to cut taxes and spending and rein in the debt?
  • What are you doing or What will you do as a LEADER to get rid of Obamacare and promote healthcare solutions based on free enterprise, not government controls?
  • What are you doing or What will you do as a LEADER to protect America from foreign threats, secure the border, and develop a robust, principled foreign policy that puts America first?
  • What are you doing or What will you do as a LEADER to ensure that our judges and lawmakers uphold the Constitution of the United States, starting by halting executive overreach?


Share The Gift & CrossFit

Last Christmas my #ShareTheGift goal was to not roll my eyes at my CrossFit Coach. It took me  about three months to really be pretty good at not rolling my eyes before settling into a groove. There were occasions when an eye roll would slip out but more often than not I kept it in check. Until last Thursday, when a huge eye roll started and almost ended up full circle. Thankfully, I caught it and apologized to my coach right a way. 

With Christmas being few days away it weighed heavy on my mind to not have come up with a commitment for this Christmas season. Discussing it with one of my coaches on Friday, I mentioned something about smiling more during the workout, perhaps at the end of every round. That led to a discussion on finding joy and satisfaction with each WoD. 

He spoke of being satisfied with doing one’s best in a WoD. Too often it is easy to compare one’s performance to someone we perceive is running faster, lifting heavier weights, doing more reps, and the list of training methods goes on as do the physical changes that each one goes through. He brought up something that had been on my mind about being satisfied with what one does in each WoD, no matter where one is in the fitness process and about not being so hard on oneself during the workout. In other words, simply finding joy in the WoD process. Just work the coaching plan.

Pondering over our discussion, I went to do some research at, which led me to these three articles: 

2015-16 SHARE THE GIFT .jpgSo after reading the articles and watching the talk, I choose for my one thing to work on, especially at 26.2 CrossFit, is to be a Gracious Receiver.

When my coach praises me, accept it. When someone tells me good job, accept it. When a coach corrects my form, appreciate it with joy, do not feel disabled by it. Accept the good and not so great WoD experience as a Gracious Receiver.  It is the effectual struggle by way of experience, a learning curve if you will, that makes it possible to recognize and enjoy any real, long-lasting fitness success. Being a Gracious Receiver is part of the weight bearing exercise process that is necessary and sufficient to ultimately reach any fitness goal. And that will  translate into other aspects of my life as well. 

Shock & Awe: A Whine Free WoD


Exercise is not my thing. It is my daily mental battle. Running is so not my thing. It is so very, very, very not my thing. Running for exercise is my fiercest mental battle. To not only decide to do CrossFit but to choose 26.2 CrossFit with a bunch of Marathon Running Fool Coaches was a mental battle nightmare. IF, a big fat IF, I could get to the Box three times a week, the first line was crossed. Could I draw a new line and hold it?

Here I am 20 months later. No, I have not run a marathon. No, I am not planning to run a marathon. To date, running like a Turtle on Valium, it would take me 13 hours (at best) to complete a marathon. That would be on flat ground, no hills, no sand, just blacktop. However, I have run the Jingle Bell 2 Miler (last December), the Color Run 5k and the Zebra Zoom 3k this year, each race with my angry, miserable face and thoughts. This year, with angry face and whining, unhappy thoughts, I signed up to do the Flavor Run 5k in January 2016.

But that is not the point of this entry today.

After taking several months off running to deal with an Achilles tendon problem, I took to rowing for a spell. In August, there was a WoD with 50 meter sprints. Something in my head said, “Try.” So I did my shuffle run and have kept it up in my classes ever since.


The WoD on December 11 was a MetCon consisting of a 1k run, 50 toes to bar, 100 Kettlebell Swings with a final 1k run and were my first  runs over 800 m since my 5k in January. That meant to get through my mega-mental running battle I had to wear my Forged: The Legend shirt, in red. (It is my superhero shirt. It is my subliminal reminder to not whine, grimace, roll my eyes or have an angry face while running.

My Super Hero Shirt Motivator

I ran the first 1k. And it happened. All of a sudden, I realized, without one I-hate-running thought or mental-misery commentary I was simply running. Then shockingly, before I knew it, there I went running the second 1k without a mental fight or complaint or miserable thought. Plus, I lengthened my stride and quickened my pace the last 100 meters! (Well, I felt like I was moving faster in my head.) That was a first for me! I even went pretty fast for me on the first hundred. Shocked and awed myself! Truly. I was amazing in my head.

But wait! There is more!

Today’s WoD was JERRY. (God Bless those he left behind.) So donning The Legend, in red, I was prepared to get through the 1 mile x2 runs. And guess what? Not one miserable-in-my-head moment running. Not one! Not one eye roll, not one mental whine or complaint, not one feeling of hatefulness about running. Not the first or the second mile.

How could this be? Who cares? I got through it and had no miserable thoughts. Be thankful!

And then it came to me. I feel happiness for God’s tender mercies in answering my prayers through my effectual struggle to exercise consistently. Running up to one mile, without anger, is my Christmas Miracle. It is a wonderful gift for which I am truly grateful.