Time Away

Setting intentions is the very best way to get your thoughts together, create an action plan and make life work for you.

Setting intentions can sometimes be compared to daydreaming. What does your perfect life look like? How can you achieve that vision?

According to my moon guru, “Where do you wish you were right this moment? What is your dream destination? One of the things listed in my perfect day is waking up to the light coming in my window, and the sound of the ocean outside. Getting up and sitting on a porch with a warm cup of coffee or tea, listening to the waves and the calming motion of the water. What does your dream day look like? How can the universe get you there if you haven’t proclaimed it? Spend some time today writing out your dream day in specific detail. Aries new moon acts as the beginning of the zodiacal year with Aries being the beginning of the signs of the zodiac. Consider this a fresh start for 2018 and get clear on how you can move forward towards your dreams. Let’s manifest.”

What’s better than day dreaming?

Ummm…actually getting to do what you dream about.

This past weekend I had the luxury of leaving the kiddos behind and driving into the Ozarks with my husband (partner in crime, bestie, whatever you want to call him) and some good friends. (If you’ve never been to Big Cedar Lodge, I HIGHLY recommend it. It’s perfect for a couples weekend away or a family trip).

And during that time, I was able to clear my mind. Relieve the stress and just jump off the grid. It was fabulous. I was also able to clear my mind and focus on my goals and intentions–to set up a map, will you, to guide me through this next phase.

We ALL need days like that. Seasons come and go, so don’t put off these days until tomorrow.

Sit down and write your dream day. MANIFEST it into your life. Meanwhile, here are some pictures of me enjoying a daydreaming weekend.

40 Days – Day 39

How are YOU living?

So today is Good Friday.

Are you like me and sometimes think–what’s Good about this Friday? Why is it called that?

Because today is the day our Savior was taken to the cross, and put to death. What’s good about that?!? I’ll tell you what’s good. HIM. He knew what was to come and He did it anyway. He laid down His life for you and me–and y’all…That’s better than good. That’s AMAZING.

So today, on one of the most holy days available to us, reflect on yourself. What are you doing? How are you living? Lay it down and be JOYOUS. For, though the event was tragic, the results were miraculous.

Here is an amazing video I saw this morning–it brought tears to my eyes. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

XOXO.

40 Days – Day 38

Pay attention to the small things. They could actually be really big things that you can’t even fathom.

Today is Holy Thursday–and Matthew Kelly brings up a REALLY good point. The disciples have a meal with Jesus, much like they do every other evening. BUT–this night is different, very different. Did they know that this was a big deal? That this ordinary event that they experienced daily would actually turn into one of the most famous events of all time?

Because that is what extraordinary things are–they are ordinary events/actions that become something so much bigger.

God loves ordinary things. Matthew Kelly says “I wonder what the disciples were thinking that Thursday morning. You know, did they just think it was another Thursday? Did they just think it was another Passover?

We’ve been talking a lot about awareness, you know, as we made our journey through Lent. I wonder what sort of awareness the disciples had. They spent three years of their lives with Jesus. They probably had dinner with him every night. Did they know this night was different? Did they know this night was special? And when he broke the bread, said the blessing, shared the wine—what kind of awareness did they have about what was happening? Did they realize they were at one of the most pivotal moments in history? Did they realize they were at the most important meal in the history of the world?

Probably not.

I guess the point is that we can wander through life half asleep. We can wander through life unconscious of a lot of really, really, really important things. And God’s constantly trying to wake us up.

And so, as we enter into these very, very sacred days, I think God’s probably trying to do the same thing to us. He’s probably trying to give us a little shake and say, “Wake up. Pay attention. This is important.” And if we do, I think, he always richly rewards us.”

You know what one of the biggest causes of us walking through life half asleep–half unconscious of our surroundings…is the fact that we are not truly HAPPY. That we are in fact, UNHAPPY.

UNHAPPY is not the same as depressed. UNHAPPY is not the same as experiencing a mind-numbing, life changing grief. UNHAPPY is something you have unintentionally conditioned your mind, body and soul to believe is true, right, and the way it should be.

You wake up every morning and go to a job that doesn’t make you smile. You run the same errands and attend the same groups/clubs, etc. And you convince yourself that this is good and that you are HAPPY.

But then think about how you feel when you are in a place that genuinely brings joy to your heart. Think about how light you feel and how it is hard to take that smile off your face. THAT, my friends, is HAPPY.

So wake up. Not just today, but everyday. FIND your happy, follow your JOY. Don’t convince yourself that you are too busy to take care of yourself. Because God (or the Universe or the guiding spirit, or however you want to refer to this super power that is all good and all knowing), wants YOU to be HAPPY in the ordinary things. When you’re happy in the ordinary things, extraordinary things happen.

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He told me, “Mom, I’m too busy” and told his brother to not disturb him because “he’s too busy.” That’s fine little one, as long as you’re finding pure JOY in your business. 

 

Much love and blessings to you today and every day.

XOXO

40 Days – A Whole Lotta Days…

So, I’m back! I was very misguided in my belief that I could do things, like blog, while the boys were out on Spring Break. They are so full of energy and life–and demand every second of the day to be filled with some sort of activity. And when they are FINALLY resting–I found myself exhausted and resting with them. But we had fun and made a whole lotta memories. So-my blog could be set aside and I was ok with that. They’re only this little once and seeing the world through their eyes is a blessing in itself.

So–I’ve been keeping up with my Lenten study, just not posting it here. I’m going to give you a couple of snippets that are certainly worth a thought. Summary from Best Lent Ever, Days 28-35:

  1. Why do we complicate things in our lives? We ALL have a tendency to make things a lot more complicated than they have to be. But there IS a way to simplify things: LOVE. Love rearranges our priorities and helps us to get clear about what we want.
  2. Decision Making. Life is nothing but choices. All day, every day. Simplify your life–live it for an audience of one (Him). You’ll all of a sudden find that choices aren’t that hard to make. Look at your motives for your decisions (especially if you are struggling to make one).
  3. Give until it hurts. If you’re reading this thinking “I have nothing to give,” I want you to pinch yourself real quick. Because THAT IS NOT TRUE. We all have so much to give, be it treasure, time or talent. And what you have IS a gift from God–so there is a great joy in offering it back to Him. “Live simply so others may simply live.” -Teresa of Calcutta
  4. What is your mission? God made YOU for a mission. What is it? I’m personally getting there–being able to put my finger on exactly He wants me to do in this world. Great things happen when your talents and passions meet the world’s and other people’s needs. So I’m trying to be quiet, to listen to Him and to go to where He is calling me.
  5. Find Yourself. The surest way to find yourself is to stay exactly where you are. Weird, huh? But…you are exactly where you are right now for a reason. Take time to serve. Do small things and do them full of love. Great love. Be the difference that makes a difference in this world. My tea this morning said this, “Life is a flow of love; your participation is requested.”
  6. Focus on what you are here to give. What will your contribution be? In the circle of life, the fact is you must contribute or perish. It is that way with all species, big or small. Contribute or perish. Find your mission, find yourself, and then give it all as big, and as full of love as you can.
  7. Don’t worry. Worrying takes us out of the NOW and we’re supposed to be living in the NOW. Because that is where He is. He does not worry about yesterday or tomorrow. He is in the now–and wants you there with Him. Do yourself a favor and read Matthew 6:25-34.
  8. There are no problems. Just lessons and solutions. Every difficulty, no matter how great or small, is an opportunity to grow. To grow in virtue. To grow in character. To become a better-version-of-yourself. Every difficulty is actually a blessing to you–though you may not see it at the time. Problems are opportunities to build your character.

DAY 35: JOY and GRATITUDE

So–some of you may be reading this thinking–what is this blog all about? Well, to be honest, it is a mom blog. As soon as Easter hits, the posts will be about being a mom and a wife. And some posts about essential oils. And some will be about finding balance in this tipsy topsy world. And some of my posts will be teeny tiny short. Some will be long winded. Some will be silly. Some will be sad. I just know that they will all provide you a window in the our little world and maybe hopefully make you feel better about your own little world. Because THIS little world, we are raising little monsters. They are sweet sometimes, they are horrid other times. But they are ours and we love them, growls and all.

Here are the rest of the pictures from our Spring Break. It was sooooo much fun, but I seriously need a vacation from our vacation. (Because there is no such thing as a vacation with a five and two year old…let’s be real).

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Little man sat here for hours waiting for his “Rie Rie.” He was ready to read to her.
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Shooting pool with the guys.
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These little guys are ready to get in on all the big boy action. Hang on, little ones…your time will come.
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The fellas pre-parade.
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Two of my very favorite gals–I’m so glad I get to call them family.
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I think we wore him out. 
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Doing Aunt Amanda’s hair. She’s a good soul.
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Breakfast at Camellia Grill. Side note: if you want to go here, go at 10:30 on a Monday. We walked right in, were served in less than 3 minutes and out by 11. (If you’re unfamiliar with this place, it’s a famous breakfast dive in Uptown New Orleans, where people will wait in line for HOURS to get a seat)
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Tourist time! We visited the Aquarium!

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Hi penguin!
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Hurricane wind tunnel…
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Petting sting rays
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The White Gator…who apparently looks neon green in this light…
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I wish my bedroom looked like this. So serene and peaceful.
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We must find the shark. 

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Lunch in the French Market.
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Cheese!
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Mommy escaped for a quick dinner with her friend, Amanda.
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He looks like Key Boy. 
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Tourist Day #2 – The Audubon Zoo!
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“And they all axed for you!”
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Trying to capture pictures of these four can be a bit trying at times…

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You can’t go to NOLA without a Hansen’s Snoball stop 

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We’re home and …
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When your mantra is “Follow your Joy” it only makes sense that your #favoriteoil is Joy. I apply this over my heart every morning and repeat to myself “follow your joy.” It gives me a good, positive energy to start the day.
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We invited our cousin, Mac, over to spend the night. This was J Man’s first sleepover at his own house–so we had to go big. Movie baskets filled with treats.
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Decorating pillow cases.

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And we couldn’t leave out Beck, even though he is too little for sleepovers…
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Popcorn time!
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They’re in there somewhere. We put up the tent in the playroom so the boys could “camp” and watch movies at the same time!
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This guy is awesome. Just truly awesome. 
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Doing some reading on my gorgeous deck on a gorgeous Spring day.
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Clay thought that was a good idea, so he came to join me.

40 Days – Day 25

Impulse.

Spanish mystic and monk, St. John of the Cross wrote, “A bird, whether it is tied down by a thread or a chain, still cannot fly.”

Those huge appetites that crave things, both good and bad. It may be “just a cigarette” or “just a piece of cake”–but if we allow ourselves to cave to these impulses, we become enslaved to those things and we lose our authentic selves. We lose that work toward our virtues.

What’s tying you down?

Go back to the exercise of growing your virtues and character and you will find that letting go of those things tying us down becomes easier.

As I said yesterday, lack of self-control and caving to impulses is truly one of my greatest vices. I STILL battle with some very bad habits. But, as I’m working on growing my patience, I in turn am growing my self-control. And there is going to be a day when I can finally cut the string (or chain) that is tying me down–and work on truly becoming the best-version-of-myself.

We all have impulses. And they can all too easily become compulsions and addictions. Become a master of your impulses. Whether the impulse is to shop, eat, procrastinate, or agree to attend an event, pause before acting on that impulse.

This is a HUGE challenge for me–but one I will accept with all my heart. Because I am a work in progress, it won’t happen immediately. But I WILL cut those chains and I will fly free–in my authentic life–and there will be much joy.

Best Lent Ever, Day 25

DAY 25: JOY and GRATITUDE

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Tim asks, “what is that?” My answer–“I don’t know. It’s just paint. But it makes me happy. So…yeah.”

When I get those brief moments of “Mommy Time” I find myself happiest when I am creating. I may have NO IDEA what I’m creating, but I honestly don’t care. Because I’m in my place and I’m happy.

I’m so thankful that I have not one but two work areas where I get to create. I may paint a bunch of scribbles, or build a couch, or refurbish a chair, or slap some vinyl on some poor unsuspecting object. It’s whatever I’m feeling in THAT moment. And as long as I’m creating, I’m in my place of pure joy, relaxation and contentment.

I challenge each and everyone of you to find that place, if you haven’t already. And work hard to treat yourself to that place at least once a week.

Follow your joy.

XOXO.