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Just Tomato Soup

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“What’s for supper”

A text message from my daughter interrupts my work just I’m about to finish up for the day. Annoyed, I ignore it, though I am dying to reply “idk, what are YOU making?” but I let the moment pass since it doesn’t serve either of us. I do ponder yet again why I don’t have the kids make more meals…and why I have kids in the first place.

I’m tired today. Some days, I just want to go home and curl up with a good book and fall asleep at 8. Some days I crave it so badly it brings a tear to my eye when I realize I just can’t today. I let that moment pass too.

I walk home and trip over everyone’s shoes at the front door. Then I grab my other mitts and shovel for the next half hour, listening to my music. I feel the cold air on my exposed face. It feels good to feel my heart pounding and I hear nothing else but my music and the scrape of the shovel. I could get them off their butts to help me. Yes, they should have had it done before I got home. I let them have their space and I greedily take mine. Outside, no one in my head or my ear. Just me and the winter. And the day melts away.

Back inside, I am asked again “What’s for supper?”

“Tomato soup and grilled cheese” I reply.

Yep, just tomato soup. No Facebook-worthy vegetarian gourmet meal. No old family recipe that I’ve been making for ages. Nothing that will find it’s way to a Pinterest board. Just tomato soup.

No Facebook-worthy vegetarian gourmet meal, just tomato soup.

 

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I pull out the relatively expensive box of amazing organic tomato soup that I didn’t make myself but discovered that everyone loves. I start to warm it on the stove. I cut up the delicious Gouda cheese, and a little bit of the jalapeno Havarti. I slather butter on one side of some yummy, soft rye bread I bought yesterday. I grab a few slices of the ham I bought for lunches. I assemble and cook them into toasted, melty goodness and pour the soup into bowls. Cucumber slices circle the plates and I deliver them to children who stop what they are doing to exclaim “Thanks Momma!”

I love it when they are like little kids again. Gleeful, calling me “Momma”, full of excitement and gratefulness for one of their favorite comfort foods. It fills my heart more than the winter air did. We sit together and visit about any little thing that comes to their heads. I crumble exactly 5 perfect plain crackers into my soup. I’ve always done it that way. Exactly 5, gathered together and lovingly crushed and sprinkled into my tomato soup. And I am 13 again too. With my own Momma and brother and sisters, talking about nothing and everything all at once.

I love it when they are like little kids again.

Melty cheese is stuck to her chin and we laugh. I quickly make another for him. Suddenly I realize that he is taller than me and finally I understand why he’s always scrounging for something else to eat! My heart aches a little as I think about how quickly their older brother grew and now makes his own tomato soup in a different house, thankfully, not too far away. But away, just the same. My tomato soup silly evenings are disappearing fast.

I am savoring every moment with them, every simple slurp of their teen lives and the melty bites in between where they allow me to be their “Momma” even for a minute. Hugging me with my head on their shoulders now that they are so much bigger than me. I relish every complaint about the beautiful meals I make them that they like less because someday, I will be eating without them.

I am savoring every moment with them

It doesn’t matter what we eat. It matters HOW we eat. Take in every morsel with exuberance and with attention to who you are with. Put down your damn phone and be with the food. Be with them. Be with yourself for a few minutes. Indulge yourself with the expensive favorite dessert, the steak dinner that he made for you, the bowl of cereal you manage to squeeze into your morning, the apple at your desk.

Feel every single piece of life that it has to offer. No criticism, no guilt, no remorse that it could have been healthier, cheaper, easier, more gourmet. Just eat.

Tomato soup simple. Just tomato soup. Just for today.

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Flip Those Disorganized Moments

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Disorganized Moment

I didn’t get my legs shaved in the shower this morning

Flip to an Organized Moment:

I’m wearing pants today anyway and this will give me an excuse for a relaxing bath later!

Disorganized:

I forgot to get envelopes for the mail I need to mail today.

Organized:

They have some at the post office and I only want two anyway instead of a whole box.

Disorganized:

I missed getting Lucas new shoes for school

Organized:

He doesn’t really care and we’ll shop local which is better anyway.

Disorganized:

I didn’t get any social media posts done up last night.

Organized:

I did get a lot of other work done that I wanted to do and then took a much needed break which made me much more ready and able to face a new week (and I got a shower idea anyway because my mind was clear!)

Disorganized:

I didn’t leave enough time to go and buy a coffee.

Organized:

I have coffee at home and a very handsome hubby who made one for me anyway! Plus I saved money!

These are just a few examples of those frustrating moments where you can choose to have a little freak out and over-reaction (which, yes, I have done) or you can choose to flip it around and see the “silver lining” as the saying goes. We are all disorganized and imperfect. It’s about time we chill out, don’t you think? I choose freedom and peace instead.

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What are some of your disorganized moments that you turned around and changed your attitude about? Fess up in the comments!

Want to turn over one of those frustrating “to-do list” things to someone else, like meal planning? We’ve got it covered for you in Badass in the Kitchen Meal Planning. We do it for you. Read more here: Badass in the Kitchen

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dance

How Do You Decide Which Activities to Put Your Kids In?

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Gretchen Rubin explores many things in her home life in the book, “Happier at Home“. In the January section, she has goals surrounding Time. One of these is to Guard My Children’s Free Time. She discusses the very common dilemma we parents face when deciding what activities our children should be involved in.

 

This is the time or year for registering our kids in a myriad of opportunities. We want to give them access to all kinds of things to “make them a better adult”. We worry about what other kids are involved in and if our child will be left behind if they are not. We want them to get out and get involved in something so that they meet new people. We want to make sure that they are physically active and learning new things. We worry that if they aren’t in this activity or that sport that they will feel left out.

This is something that we have struggled with many times in our house. I worried about my daughter being involved in dance so much that she was missing out on other opportunities, yet if she didn’t do all the dances her friends were in, she would feel left out. I have forced my boys to do activities that they really didn’t like because everyone should know how to skate or to swim. I felt like I was a neglectful parent if my children were not involved in some sort of music or art class – after all, they would be left behind academically if they were not fluent in some sort of artistic endeavor. And oh my, what if they don’t have any friends!? Or what if their friends were able to go to this camp, but not my child and then what would they talk about? It would be horrible to be the one who was left behind!

And so we ran. We ran this way and that. I barely saw my husband except in passing or to make a demand that he pick so-and-so up so that I could get another one to that activity. I spent countless hours being the perfect volunteer parent. The one who always helped out. The one who always watched every activity. The one who organized this and picked up that for the team.

 

I threatened and physically dragged my children. I ignored pleas and tantrums because “you have to go”. Guilt trips and negative talk were the order of the day, especially during competition season. After all, this was what all the work was for, right!? How could you let your team down if you don’t go?

 

We were eating on the run, in cars and corners of a gymnasium or arena. Saturday mornings were rushing to this thing and money we didn’t have was spent on hotels and stuff we barely used before the season was over and the kid had outgrown it.

 

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It put a strain on everyone. I was yelling all of the time, finding myself saying horrible, mean things to my children, to get them to go, to get them to do better, to push them harder. It stressed us financially and our marriage suffered because we barely saw each other. So much resentment because I felt he didn’t help enough and he felt I helped too much. It strained our health from eating too much fast food and not eating together. The stress of the constant running around took a toll on my body. I began to forget things, or do something poorly just to get it over with and not doing it perfectly strained my nerves even more. I begged my friends each spring to remind me to not get so involved in stuff the next fall; but each fall I would repeat the pattern again. Each fall, the crazy life would start all over again.

 

And then there came a time when it was too much. My daughter hated the dancing that she once loved. She barely got enough sleep and spent almost as many hours at dance or travelling to it as she spent at school. She cried at night because her legs ached so much. I had to drag my boys along or to their stuff or ended up missing them completely because we were so busy. I’d forced them to do things from my own guilt because, well, they should have to do things like their sister did. It was only fair that they had opportunities too!

 

I broke down one morning, about 4:30 in the morning. I’d realized in the middle of the night that I had forgotten to do something very important for my son’s Cadets. I had forgotten a few important things recently and felt like a complete failure. I sat in the dark and cried and cried over my keyboard. I wrote a letter to a friend and fellow Cadet mom who had had to pick up the pieces where I’d made a mess. I couldn’t go on like this anymore.

 

That next fall, we didn’t do dance. Instead, we let our daughter try other things; things that didn’t take as much time and that she was curious about like fencing. I stopped forcing my oldest son to take swimming lessons or learn to skate. He hated swimming and was never going to pass that first level. I stepped down from many of my volunteer responsibilities and let someone else step up. I stopped forcing my youngest into groups like cubs where being around all those other kids completely overwhelmed him. I started to say no to activities and yes to guarding my children’s time (and my sanity).

 

Now, she’s dancing again, but in a less competitive way more fun studio. She is able to try out high school sports she is interested in and work part time to support her own makeup artist interests. My oldest is away from home now and plays ball again, a game he’d begged me to let him stop playing as a kid. Now he plays again on his own terms, because he wants to have fun. My youngest isn’t involved in very many things except more solo things he’s actually interested in, like guitar lessons. He feels listened to and I understand that he thrives when he’s allowed to do what he loves instead of what I think he “should” be doing.

 

Yes, I am criticized sometimes and I’m my worst critic. Sometimes I worry that I shouldn’t let her do all the different things she does because she does way more than the boys and “it’s not a fair distribution of resources”. Many things, she pays for herself (like one of her dance classes this year). I think this does more to teach her responsibility than denying her. I am criticized that my youngest spends so much time online and doesn’t get out as much as other kids. It is what he loves to do and he does it with friends and his sister and his cousins. He plays guitar in his own time and reads books too. He enjoys the quiet and solitude of being with himself. It is who he is and I will no longer force him to be someone he’s not. I will encourage him to stretch out (and he has, joining a tech camp over the summer for example). He is willing to try things when we allow him to try them on his terms in line with his personality and recognizing his strengths.

 

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We are learning together how to better manage our time so that each of us is able to pursue things that light us up instead of stress us out. My girl is so like me in wanting to try everything, but she is learning how to manage her own time as I have her consider that if she says yes to something, she will have to say no to something else. She realizes that she cannot do it all at a way younger age than I was. And that’s a very good thing!

 

We are busy, but we also have time when we are able to eat dinner together and do other things… or even do nothing! We can sit and watch movies all Saturday or go on a date or just read a book. There is life outside of our activities and we are allowing each other to have that life. The activities are that much better because we have the time to actually enjoy them.

 

I know what it feels like at this time of year. How you desperately want to give your kids everything. How you are afraid of missing out. I am not condemning anyone who chooses to keep a very full schedule with your kids. That is your choice.

 

I am just advising that you consider the cost of these things before you say yes. Consider what you are saying no to when you say yes to one more thing. Remember what it felt like last fall and is that how you want to feel this year? Talk together as a family and really listen to what your kids have to say. Listen to what your heart tells you. How do you want to feel? How does your daughter want to feel? Your son? Your spouse? Then decide together what you will do to feel that way.

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wasting time

What is a Clean House?

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My house isn’t clean by some standards. In fact, it’s pretty dirty by some standards.

  1. My windows are especially dirty because heights freak me out. But mostly because cleaning windows, especially really dirty ones, takes a really long time…longer than I feel like doing right now.
  2. My carpets are rarely vacuumed, let alone washed. Right now, I can see the faint 1 1/2 meter long line where B recently spilled his entire glass of RED wine in the living room. We ‘cleaned’ it with club soda right away, but it’s still kinda there. It blends in with all the other splots of wine and food because yep, I let everyone eat in the living room…often…so you can picture what my carpet looks like. And we have a dog…
  3. My kitchen table is constantly covered in things like Magic the Gathering cards, spilled salt, someone’s empty water bottle, nectarines in a paper bag, a cool sculpture my son made that reminds me of one of those little dippy bird thingys that people keep on their desks and coupons that I keep forgetting to take with me to the store.
  4. Books are piled in various places throughout the house, in different phases of being read. Some from the library, some purchased by B, some by me, some by her. There’s also singing bowls and tarot cards and candles and incense lying around without a ‘home’ because they are constantly moved from one place to another.

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I know how to clean a house. In fact, I’m actually really good at it. My mother taught me well. I even recently cleaned her house – thoroughly – for her while she was away. I can do it. I used to do it all the time.

I have videos of the kids on a Saturday morning that has occasional glimpses of a woman in frumpy, over-sized clothes, without a shower, frantically cleaning everything in one day. She often ended up yelling at someone that day or she was full of resentment and the feeling of being alone in the struggle of perfection. And she never seemed to be able to get it perfect.

Worst of all, in those videos are moments she missed:

  1. The little boy playing a board game with his “evil” twin because no one had time to play. That grown man is too busy for a board game, even when she asks him to play and tries to bribe him to come over for his favorite food.
  2. The baby girl dancing in the living room to music only she can hear. She doesn’t even like her mama to see her practice at dance class, let alone find her dancing at home.
  3. The quiet little boy creating worlds only he knows the story of. She wishes she could write those stories down, but they’re gone now.
  4. The chance to curl up with him and the 3 of them in bed, reading it “just one more time” because they used to love the sound of her voice and their favorite book

Yes, there are moments that she didn’t miss, but not as many as she’d like.

She doesn’t live here anymore. She has been replaced by a “sometimes-cleaning” lady. This lady is happier. She doesn’t miss as many moments that are so quickly disappearing. There is less stuff, more time but she the sometimes-cleaning lady doesn’t use that time for cleaning very much. I use the time for non-cleaning things.

  1. I don’t need to look out the dirty windows because I’m “out there” a lot more than I used to be. My skin is no longer pale and hidden from the sun. I am in my garden, snacking on a lettuce leaf or a strawberry. Or on a walk with whoever will go with me, enjoying being outside. My feet are dirty from walking barefoot in the grass, reconnecting with Earth. tomatoes
  2. The dirty carpets show that we live here. The time spent not washing them is time reading a book or watching a movie. Popcorn and wine and spots of food ignored. It’s time spent showing our kids that you’re never too old to learn or try something new. You can see the carpet now that we have fewer things covering them up, stains and all.
  3. My kitchen table is quick to clear when I need to. For now, I will enjoy the bird and find the coupons when I need them. I’ll grab a juicy nectarine just because it’s summer. The sea salt makes my real food taste even better and the Magic the Gathering cards will be needed again when we all go play again this Friday. And I’ll need my water bottle for yoga later.
  4. The books are being read; the cards are too. The incense and candles fill our home with peace and tranquility as we are learning to be more connected with ourselves instead of all those things that we used to try to fill our home with. We are together more in these quieter moments without a vacuum cleaner filling the house with noise.

I do not have a perfectly clean house. I’ll have plenty of time for that some other time.

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Right now, this moment, I will let the dust sit on the shelf and the crumbs on the floor while I write a little. I will leave the dishes in the sink while I visit a friend I have missed. I will wash the floor another day because tomorrow, I’m going for a pedicure with my mom, sister and my daughter. This is what I choose to clean up – my life; my time with the people I care about and my love of myself. This is what a “clean house” is. The temple of me.

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To you: I challenge you to allow yourself to ‘waste time’. As the Dixie Chicks say in this song, “Tomorrow, there’ll be so much to do. So tonight, I’ll drift in a dream with you”. Forever is never enough time with them. Clean the right house.

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trust

Trust

 

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I was going to write about Spring Cleaning today but the word trust kept popping into my head. I know -big difference in subject matter!! This is how I write now. I write about what moves me and the thoughts that I feel HAVE to be put down on my computer.

I used to be the BIGGEST worrier. I would fret about work; who would I be working with? Was it going to be a good day? Would I be able to handle my workload? Could I be a good nurse for my patients? Would it be so crazy on the unit that I would forget something?

I would worry about my kids. Are they doing ok at school? Did they get their assignments done? Did they hand in the paper that was due today? Are they in the right extra-curricular activity? Is he able to handle going to parties? Will they make good decisions?

I would also worry about whether I had paid all the bills before their deadlines. What I would make for supper that the family would enjoy. I would worry if I hadn’t heard from my friends for a while. I would feel so awful for what others were going through that my day would not be good.

I think you get the point. I would actually feel ill quite often with my stomach doing flip flops because I could not escape the thoughts. I took the weight of the world on my shoulders and I did not know how to cope with the thoughts that bombarded me on a day to day basis. I did not understand that all of these things were out of my control. My worrying did not make a bit of difference on the outcome of these situations and quite frankly looking back it was simply exhausting to have these negative feelings all of the time. It was like I was anticipating a negative outcome before it had even happened.

So moving on to trust. What is trust? Well the online dictionary defines trust as such:

trust

[truhst]

noun

reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc., of a person or thing; confidence.

confident expectation of something; hope.

confidence in the certainty of future payment for property or goods received; credit: to sellmerchandise on trust.

a person on whom or thing on which one relies: God is my trust.

the condition of one to whom something has been entrusted.

 

The definition that I am talking about is the first. “Reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc., of a person or thing; confidence.”

You see I have had to be able to trust more than I ever have before. In doing so I am able to live much more freely.

 

When we are babies and even small children we don’t know anything but trust. It is only after a child has been let down, lied to, or treated adversely that they begin to not trust people at times.

As adults I find that it is more difficult to put your trust in something or someone. Through experience we know that trust can easily be shattered and is very difficult to recover. We know that trust has to be earned.

 

However…

 

If we are able to  open ourselves up to trust in people and situations then we are able to live in the moment without defining what ‘could’ happen and not robbing our life at the present time of all that it is.

 

Yesterday was a prime example of ways that I trusted everything would work out. I went through my usual work day trusting that I could get away on time in order to pick up my daughter and get her to dance competition on time. I trusted that my parents would pick my kiddos up from school and my Mom would get my daughter’s hair all curled and styled for me so that we wouldn’t be late. I trusted that my husband would remember to pick up my youngest son and get everything done so that we would be ready for school the next day. Lo and behold I got a flat tire on the way to dance competition. I now had to trust that I could get the tire changed and get into the theatre on time to watch my daughter dance. Luckily my bff changed it and we got finished up just in time. After the competition I had to trust that I could get back to my town on the little spare tire on the busy highway.

It all amazingly worked out.

 

Another thing during my daughter’s dance routine there is a part where some of the girls have to lift my girl up in the air while she is in the splits. Their job is important to keep her safe from falling. She has to trust them 100% and they trust that she can hold the move. The old me would have worried so much about the outcomes of all of these things.

 

My son recently turned 18. I keep thinking and wondering if we have given him the tools to be able to get by in the world. As parents we have to be able to trust that he can make good decisions at this point and trust that he will come to us for advice and help when he wants it not just when we think that he should have it. We have to put trust in our children and let them make decisions for themselves.

 

Another thing in my life that I used to worry about extensively was money. When my husband I were first starting out we barely made above minimum wage. I panicked about whether we had enough for this or that. I managed it all for years. One day I realized that I just had too much on my plate and my husband and I decided that I would hand over the financial stuff to him. We still discuss finances but now he is responsible for paying the bills and managing the accounts. This was tough for me to let go of and trust that he could manage this but he really stepped up and does a great job.

 

I also used to stress about being able to do it ALL. I think this is common for women. We don’t have to participate or volunteer with everything ALL of the time. Of course we have feelings of guilt around all of this. (That is a whole other topic.) As May is often the busiest month in my house I trust that if I take things day by day then my days should play out as they are supposed to.

 

I am not saying that you have to trust every person that you come across. I am saying that things happen for a reason and you should always trust in the outcome. We are not meant to see the big picture.

 

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Here are more few examples about how I am able to trust.

 

  • Friendships – I trust that my friends will be open and honest with me, not play games, and have my back if I need them
  • Children- I trust that they will be safe every day, do their best, and learn from their mistakes
  • Husband – I trust this man with all my heart. I know that I can count on him for love and support.
  • Job – I trust that I have the knowledge to assist people to the best of my abilities.

 

I hope that you are able to let go of the need to try and control every situation that comes your way. Sometimes you just need to listen to that gut feeling, go with the flow and live in the present with every cell of your body!

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Blessings,

Krystal

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accomplished

UN-Motivated

You know what I’ve noticed this school break? I haven’t got very many of my “projects” done that I planned. At first, I was annoyed with myself, thinking that it’s because I’ve been feeling UN-motivated…and that I’ve been “lazy”.

However, what I’ve realized today is that I’ve really enjoyed this time WITHOUT getting those things done. Instead, I’ve spent a lot of time with my kids and with friends. I’ve been doing little things around the house that I thought were project ‘avoidance’ tasks but now I’ve realized were little things that were bugging me (eg. the recycling yesterday). I’ve slept more too.

Most of all, I’ve been spending time just in my head. Not really thinking about anything, just in the quiet space, turned off and tuned in. Not really consciously meditating, but turned off from all the projects and books and ideas and to-do’s and songs that are normally flying around in my head. They just haven’t been there. It was worrying me. What if I was missing out? What if those things don’t get done? It’s hard to just let them sit there without the accompanying guilt filling me up. I am letting it go, how could I face myself knowing that I wasn’t getting stuff done?

Maybe it’s my hubby’s zen vibes he’s sending me from Costa Rica. We’ve been emailing back and forth and I can already feel how changed he is. Maybe it’s the spring trying to peek out from the long cold winter. Maybe it’s just me, feeling a little burned out; but it doesn’t feel like my usual burn out I’ve felt before.

Maybe this UN-motivation isn’t anything sinister. Maybe it’s just me making space for the changes that are coming. Changes that I don’t even know about. Maybe it’s just time to embrace whatever happens WHENEVER it happens. Life is just too bloody short to fret about what I’m supposed to do next; even if those are things I love to do. Maybe it’s a little reminder to just be here in this moment whether the moment is filled with something or not. It’s just a moment. And it’s mine to do with whatever I will or even won’t do. I choose right now, today, this way. And that’s totally OK, no matter what it looks like.

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clock

9 Hours

What would you do with 9 hours in a week? Don’t think you have 9 hours? Let’s take a little look at some time wasting facts, Jack…

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1. Facebook…

We all do it. You know for a fact that you could be doing something else besides checking Facebook 10 times in the last hour.

“It’s only for a minute!” You say?

  • 1 X 10 = 10 min. per hour
  • 10 min/hour X 8 hr = 80 min in 1 work day…
  • 80 min X 5 days is 400 min (6 hours) in 1 work week!! Yep, SIX

For the sake of argument, let’s cut that in half…So…that’s 3 extra hours so far in a week. (and you know it’s actually more than that…)

2. TV Time…

And what about TV time? How much time do you REALLY spend in front of the TV? Let’s figure it out a little here:

The average person spends about 2.8 hours per day watching TV. What about you? Let’s again say that you only watch 1 hour in 3 days of stuff you really don’t “need” to watch. That’s giving you 3 more hours (of the about 20 hours per week you actually watch.)

3. Looking for Things…

How many times do you have to search for something in a day?

  • A form you need to fill out – 5 minutes?
  • Your keys – 2 minutes?
  • Her other shoe that isn’t where it’s supposed to be – 6 minutes?
  • The lunch kit from yesterday that needs filling for today – 3 minutes?
  • What you’re going to wear – 5 minutes? (at least)
  • More toothpaste – 15 minutes? (more if the store is farther away)

5 + 2 + 6 + 3 + 5 + 15 = 36 minutes per day looking for something. 252 minutes per week is 4.2 hours. Far fetched? Time yourself the next time you have to search for your keys…Again, let’s cut that in half for argument sake: 2 more hours you could use in a week! Get organized!

4. Email You Don’t Really Read…

How long does it take you to read your email? To delete them? Time yourself. Let’s say you spend about 5 minutes every hour during the work day dealing with email that are junk or unimportant:

  • 5 minutes per hour X 8 hr day = 40 min in 1 work day…
  • 40 min X 5 days is 200 min (3 hours) in 1 work week. 

That’s 3 more hours in your week that you could use if you setup some systems to deal with your email. You know that you likely spend much more time than that.

So, with just those four time wasters: Facebook (3 Hours) + TV TIme (3 Hours) + Looking for Things (2 Hours) + Junk Email (3 Hours) = 11 Hours total in a week! I only mentioned finding 9 hours, so let’s even take 2 hours off of my already generous actual hours you spend wasting time to make it 9!

What if you spent 9 hours of your wasted time in a week doing some of those tasks on your list? What do you think you could get done in a week? In a month? A year? It really adds up, right!? At 9 hours a week, you could do a lot of those things that you always wanted to do!!

I’m not saying that these things aren’t fun. But how much do you really want to do something else? What are you really missing out on? How much better would your life be if you stopped doing some of these things even for just ½ the time you normally spend on them? Where would you be then?

It’s time for you to stop settling for less than what you deserve. You are better than that and you know it! Stop wasting YOUR time.

I’m creating a course for setting goals and making shizzle happen. It’s about frickin’ TIME that you live the life you deserve. Be the first to join the course by registering here: Goals Goddess eCourse and let’s conquer those time wasters together.

Goals Goddess eCourse – starting in April – Register NOW to be the first to know.

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Technology-social-media

Confessions

Technology-social-media

Confession…

I was a Facebook addict. Sounds ridiculous right? Facebook otherwise known as Crackbook by some had my attention several times a day. And not just Facebook either. I HAD to have my phone by my side at all times as if it were my lifeline. If I misplaced my phone it would cause me great anxiety. I would have to check emails and Facebook first thing in the morning and last at night plus during the day. I would pick up my phone whenever I heard that little ding to remind me that I had a new message or another email.

 

ad·dict

transitive verb \ə-ˈdikt\

Definition of ADDICT

:  to devote or surrender (oneself) to something habitually or obsessively

 

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Technology nowadays makes it really easy to have everything at the touch of our finger tips. Social media sites, email, web pages, music, news, weather and more are readily available with computers, laptops, net-books, tablets and phones. There are many, MANY debates regarding the pros and cons of technology. In terms of users there are those that aren’t comfortable with or choose not to use technology. There are people that use technology only when they have to; maybe for work or the occasional correspondence. Some have a cell phone only for emergency purposes. Then there are those that use technology several times a day. They may be the gamers, use it for their jobs, like playing with all the latest techie tools, or might be very social with the use of it. Whatever the case, it is all around us.

I don’t think there is a right or wrong answer for how much each individual should use technology. It is all a very personal decision. For me when it got to the point where my kids would be frustrated because I wasn’t 100% present and I was getting distracted for far too long then I knew that it was time to change. I was also really tired of all of the posts telling me what I should eat, what I should wear, how to parent and the list goes on and on. I was not a happy camper. I had been toying with the idea of a Facebook detox for a long time. I had also decided that at this point I needed to take a break from posting on our webpage too (which most of that is connected between Facebook and our site). For me it was the right time to focus on my health and relationships. Getting caught up and pouring hours into our posts cut down on time for other things. I needed a break from online to create a bigger presence and more meaning in my relationships.

 

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Not to say that I wouldn’t have done these things while still being active on Facebook because I still would have been active with workouts, and doing things with friends BUT I was able to squeeze in more running than I had, extra workouts, more time with friends and family. It was quite eye opening really. I love Facebook for keeping in touch, sharing experiences, inspirations and advice but I also know that it is great to live outside of the screen and I just needed that break to remember what other great things I could accomplish.

I am not sorry for stepping away from Simple Life to evaluate what I wanted and didn’t want from our business. I do not feel like I missed out on a whole bunch either from staying off of social media for over a week. I am happy that I got to have more coffee dates rather than texting dates. I know what’s right for me is to step away now and then, follow my feelings, post when it does not feel forced and remember that relationships are what will always be needed in life. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy Facebook, texting, emailing and posting but for me there definitely has to be a break from technology at times.

I know I am not alone; I read a statistic that said that ¼ of FB users checked their accounts 5 or more times a day. And considering there are over 1.2 billion users that is a LOT of time online. I also read that ¼ of smartphone users don’t remember the last time that they did not have their phones with them. (Hopefully they are not taking them in to the shower and to bed!) Is this time on Social Media concerning? I think that it could be and everyone needs to evaluate that for themselves.

 

 

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What can you do?

If this is a concern for you then there are a few things that may help you.

~ admit that there is a problem. Ask yourself if you are present in your families lives; in fact ask them!

~ figure out why you go on social media in the first place. Is it for connection? Are you bored?

~ find a balance between online and offline interactions.

~limit your time. Check your email only at certain times of the day. Limit social media time.

 

This video is humorous and eye opening.

 

What are your thoughts on social media? Do people abuse it?

 

Credit to Becoming Minimalist
Credit to Becoming Minimalist

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self-care thursday

Self-care Sunday

Thursday evenings are often quiet evenings for me. My family is usually busy with other things and it’s nearing the end of the week, so things are settling down in general. The picture above was from my last Thursday evening.

I’m a big proponent of practicing self-care. I used to think that doing things for myself was “being lazy” or “selfish”. However, I noticed that the more I did NOT do for me, the more I was filled with resentment and anger and frustration. I thought I was being a good mother but would find myself yelling at my kids ALL the time – in a very unhealthy way. I would be secretly angry with my husband, especially when he was doing things he enjoyed doing for himself. This would build up inside until it would come exploding out one day out of the blue and the poor guy wouldn’t know what had hit him! I didn’t feel like I had time for making time for me. Who would take over when I had some quiet time? Wasn’t time for me selfish? I still ask myself those questions sometimes.

I’ve discovered that when I’ve just been going and going and going; rarely taking the time to re-charge, I am exhausted and feel like I can’t get anything accomplished. Headaches haunt me and I just don’t feel like myself. It’s then that I remember how much practicing self-care helps me. Better still, I now practice it more often so that I don’t get to that stage. I’m sure to schedule in time for me so that I’m able to be a better Mom, a better wife and a better person.

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Sometimes, it’s curling up under my warm, soft blanket from my best friend that’s all mine and reading a book. It could be playing a game on the computer, quilting, writing or just sleeping a little bit longer than everyone else. My family supports me in this because they know how much it helps me. It’s a habit I want to make sure that they learn (especially my daughter) by seeing me do it.

I created a little download for you if you’re searching for ideas for practicing self-care. Click here to grab your copy (and share it with your friends!)

What are some of your ideas for self-care? What are some of the benefits you see when you do something for you? Leave us a note in the comments!

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goals goddess

Setting Goals Goddess

I’m working on my first “real” webinar called: “Go Goals Goddess” I’m really excited about it because I have learned a lot over the years in my different careers and as I’ve been raising my kids. I’ve learned what doesn’t work for me and what does. Of course, being techie, I’ve found and tried lots of different tools. But, as you can see in the picture above, I also love a pen and paper.

My current system is a combination of a few things; web based and on paper. I find this works really well for me. In the past year or so since I’ve been doing it this way, I’ve tweaked and refined it and come up with a way that I’m able to keep track of things and forget less and get more done. Saying that, I also DON’T get things done! So, the other thing I’ve been learning is how to let those things go. It used to really bother me, but I’ve been much better about that.

The Go Goals Goddess webinar will give you helpful tips and tricks on setting attainable goals. I’ll show you lots of different tools and give you ideas on what works best. It will help you set goals, get some done and be ok with the rest! It’s this Thursday, March 20 at 7:30.

Register for the webinar here: Go Goals Goddess Webinar (it’s free to join!)

How do you feel about goal setting? Share your comments below!

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