5 Lessons from Small Space Living

8
Jun
2017

5 lessons from small space living

In September of last year we moved from a 3400 square foot home to a 500 square foot carriage house, thrusting us into small space living. This was an “eventual” plan of ours, to move to our vacation property full-time, but we put things into fast forward last summer and ditched city living for a slower pace.

It has been a huge season of change, building new relationships, finding a new church, learning to truly enjoy a slow pace, but most importantly learning to let go of stuff and live small.

We are preparing to build our dream home here at the beach, but for now, we are living in a small space, the three of us and our two doodle dogs.  You can view our home, which was highlighted on one of my favorite blogs House of Turquoise almost three years ago.   It is a small space and I will tell you – it looks pretty much like that even today -with us living in it!

What I have most enjoyed about this season, is realizing that living small is an amazing freedom and I’ve learned a few lessons that are pretty powerful.

Less Indoor Space Means More Time Outdoors

We moved to the beach to slow down and enjoy the little things more.  The frantic pace of suburbia and all the traffic was exhausting us.  Here at the beach, we spend way more time outside and this includes my seven year old.  He’s outside constantly – and he doesn’t mind the wind, rain or clouds at all.  We walk the dogs more, we find a reason to go for a bike ride – and really – do you need a reason?

I don’t need 28 sweaters

Moving into a small space meant I needed to clean out my closet – BIG TIME!! I realized I had clothes that I didn’t really love – and too many of them.  Truly – how many sweaters do you really need?  I have been de-cluttering my closet now for over six months.  It is freeing and so empowering.  It means less choices in the morning and actually looking forward to getting dressed because the clothes I have I really like wearing!  

Clutter Suffocates

This is not a new discovery – but I can tell you, having less in my home means I can breathe.  Its okay that not every counter or shelf has decor or something placed there.  It provides a sense of relief honestly.  In a small space you enjoy having less – it provides room to just BE.  We must make a decision about whether we are keeping something NOW, not put it aside and wait until another time and then decide after it’s been stuffed in a drawer for five years to purge it.

Less Stuff = Less Stress

Being purposeful about what we have in our home and what we treasure has provided a huge stress relief.  The guilt about getting rid of things that I felt I needed to keep has been conquered.  This can take a bit of time, believe me – I was having a hard time with old photos and such, but then we decided to scan photos and take pictures of memorabilia instead of keeping the item.    We you begin to experience the freedom in parting with things that are in boxes and not enjoyed daily, it begins to be much easier to make decisions for the future.

The Best Things in Life Aren’t Things

I am sure you’ve heard this before, but it is true.  I have more time to spend doing activities rather than cleaning, picking up, organizing, storing, purging or doing upkeep.  We can visit friends, invite someone over, do an impromptu get together or get out of town at the last minute.  When you have a small space with less things, it provides time freedom as well as emotional freedom.

This is a season for us, we will be building a larger home and moving into a bigger space within the next year and a half, but this has been one of the best life lessons I have had – living small and learning how to determine what it really important.

Does living small appeal to you?

DIY Hydrating Lotion Bars – Travel Friendly

15
May
2017

Young Living Lotion Bars

These homemade hydrating essential oil lotion bars will make  your summer so easy – especially if you are traveling.

I just returned from a 13 day trip to Australia – it was A-MA-ZING!!  Saw many wonderful places and met some beautiful people too.

But, do you know what happened to me?  My lotion bottle blew up in my checked bag – thank goodness I pack in plastic bags!!  So as soon as I got home I made these homemade lotion bars for my next travel adventure so I can be sure to not have that mis-hap again.

These are easy to make.

Simple to pack and not worry they will explode when under pressure.

Super moisturizing for your body – the warmth of your body helps to melt the natural emollients and the added essential oils smells wonderful and help sooth, smooth, moisturize and hydrate hands, feet, elbows and more!

This homemade lotion bar recipe with essential oils is the bomb – be sure to get some made before your next trip or excursion to the beach or desert area.  You will thank me!

I went through my oily stash and decided to use Stress Away, Joy and Cedarwood (known for it’s calming effects) and I wasn’t disappointed.

Recipe:

 Directions
  1. Combine coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter, and cocoa butter in a 16-ounce glass measuring cup.
  2. Place in a pot with water that rises to halfway up the measuring cup
  3. Bring water to a boil, stirring frequently until ingredients are completely melted.
  4. Remove measuring cup from the pot.
  5. Add essential oils and vitamin E oil and stir until completely combined.
  6. Immediately pour into molds.
  7. Let sit for several hours until they are firm
  8. Once cooled, carefully remove the lotion bars from the molds.
  9. Store in a cool, dry place.  I place in small plastic bags for easy on the go use (I use these)

Great to have on hand in your purse or overnight bag.   These are so portable and convenient – helping to keep skin smooth and soft – even while out and about this summer.

Essential Oil Sign Up

How to use these lotion bars::

Simply rub them along your skin to apply the lotion easily.  You can rub on feet, heels, elbows, hands, arms and legs.  No more dripping lotion or pouring too much in your hands.  These are great for kids too!

Grab yourself some oils and the goodies you need to make these and spend an afternoon doing just that – I did with my daughter and it was an enjoyable time together!

Homemaking Just Got Easier!!!

26
Apr
2017

homemaking bundle

It’s not like you expected homemaking to be a piece of cake.

But you had no idea you’d be so tired, frustrated, and overwhelmed, right?

I’ve often felt the same way. When I first became a wife and mom years ago, I needed GPS to find my way around the kitchen. Oh, and developing systems to efficiently handle laundry and cleaning? Um… do I have to answer that?

Homemaking is filled with mundane tasks that never end, but here’s the thing: do you want to spend more time overwhelmed by things you don’t enjoy?

No, no, you do not.

So what if you could find resources to help you become better at homemaking (and maybe even learn to love it)?

Well, look no further, because I found something that might be just what you need: The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle.

For six days only, everything you need (and then some) is in one fabulous package, for the most affordable price ever. (Seriously, just wait until I tell you the price.)

This year’s edition of the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle includes 50 ebooks, 21 eCourses, 14 printables, 2 videos, 2 audios, 2 summits, and 1 membership site.

These top-quality resources cover everythingyou need to make homemaking and mothering feel less stressful… quick & healthy recipes, homemaking printables, cleaning tips, sizzling date night ideas, parenting helps, and so much more.

For less than the cost of a meal out (and you won’t need to be rescued by drive-thru after this!), you’ll get a complete library to help you:

  • Cook up wholesome recipes for your family
  • Build stronger relationships with your kids (even your teens)
  • Discover speedy cleaning routines for the toughest messes
  • Rekindle the romance in your marriage
  • Put self-care back into your life
  • and finally enjoy homemaking.

Plus, it comes with over $290 worth of bonus offers from companies you’ll love (this is one of my favorite parts).

My Favorite Picks in the Bundle:::

  • Matters of the Heart: a 52-Week Scripture Memorization Journey for Women by Carlie Kercheval ($10.00)
  • Cozy Minimalist Decorating Class by Myquillyn Smith ($39.00)
  • What’s 4 Dinner Challenge Meal Planning eCourse by Erin Odom and Holly Dvorak ($47.00)
  • 21 Days to a More Disciplined Life by Crystal Paine ($4.99)
  • Productivity and Well-Being eCourse by Lisa Grace Byrne ($47.00)
  • Making Big Life Changes Together: Pursuing Your Dreams as a Couple by Haley Stewart ($3.99)
  • 30 Days, 30 Ways for Mothers to Take Care of Themselves by Angela Henderson ($19.95)

Just those favorites would total $171.93 if bought separate – so I am grabbing this bundle for the lower price of $29.95!

You sort of need to see it to believe it, but the package includes 106 digital products and it’s worth over $1980!

Besides being so incredibly helpful, one of the things I like best about the bundle is the price. By offering it for a short time only, they’re able to give you access to over $1980 worth of amazing products for a whopping 97% off!

Here’s how it works:

  1. Visit their website, take a quick look at all the goodness that comes in this package, then click the “Get my copy now!” button to go through their simple and secure 3-step checkout process.
  2. You’ll receive an email with a login to their online access portal, where you’ll begin downloading your eBooks, signing up for your eCourses, and redeeming your free bonus offers.
  3. Use their Getting Started Guide to pick the topic you want to tackle first and start your stress-less homemaking journey!

The most important detail, though, is that this bundle is available for just six days! After Monday night, May 1st, the sale ends and you’d have to buy all of these products individually.

I’d hate for you to miss out, so click HERE to learn more or buy the bundle.

It’s even backed by a 100% happiness guarantee, so you can make sure it’s right for you.

No one should have to feel overwhelmed by homemaking because it costs too much or they can’t get the help they need.

Becoming efficient as a homemaker is one thing. Fully embracing all the messy moments and hard times and loving it (most days) is another. But it’s not out of reach.

Learn more or get your bundle HERE.

(Psst… the bundle goes away at 11:59pm Eastern on Monday, May 1st, so don’t wait!)

You also get these amazing bonuses too!!!

  • $15 store credit from Cultivate What Matters (international shipping available)
  • Free 1 month subscription from Kiwi Crate, $20 value ($15 off $50 shop purchase for existing customers, shipping available to U.S. & Canada)
  • Free 1 month MightyFix shipment from Mighty Nest, $17 value ($15 store credit toward next add-on order for existing MightyFix subscribers, international shipping available)
  • One project box from Detox Project Box, $25 value (shipping available to U.S. & Canada)
  • Free 1 month subscription from Bookroo, $18 value (box of past favorites for existing customers, international shipping available)
  • $15 store credit from Orglamix (international shipping available)
  • $15 store credit from Strawesome (international shipping available)
  • Digital download of the 2017 Hope Ink Calendar, $20+ value -or- $15 credit + 3 art prints from Hope Ink, $99 value (international shipping available)
  • Homeowner Lifetime Membership from HomeBinder, $120 value (digital)
  • Free 1 year annual membership from MollyGreen.com, $29 value (digital)

Creating a Chemical Free Home Made Easy

24
Apr
2017

Creating a Chemical Free Home Made Easy

Who wouldn’t want to create a Chemical Free Home to help live the best life we can?

Potentially dangerous chemicals can be found in every room in your home – and many are being used which are causing great problems for our family.  

Synthetic fragrances, found in household cleaning products, perfumes, nail polish, and plastic food containers contain Phthalates.  These have been found to interfere with testosterone and estradiol, a hormone that affects breast development. Studies have found that women who develop breast cancer have higher levels of certain types of phthalates than women who are cancer free. (SOURCE)

And it gets worse when you consider the toxic chemicals in our personal care products!

From antiperspirants to perfumes, from toothpastes to skin care products, Americans have been unknowingly poisoning themselves and their families with hundreds of chemical compounds that the body is unequipped to deal with.  Chemical free should be our goal for our family.

Just one example are Parabens. Parabens possess estrogen-mimicking properties that are associated with increased risk of breast cancer.  They are found in all types of personal care products – and they are harming you every time you put them on – sometimes multiple times a day.

Our indoor air quality is very toxic when you include burning candles, using plug in wall scents and all the product we use thinking we are “cleaning our home” but in fact, we are poisoning ourselves.

Most experts agree that anyone serious about experiencing improved health today and in the long-run must begin to replace products made with toxic chemicals, and use personal care and household products that are safe for the body.   I began making chemical free changes about four years ago, even ditching my all-item favorite perfume and my life has been dramatically altered for the better.

If you could use products that are simpler, less-expensive, and more effective than the toxic products you are currently using wouldn’t you at last want to give them a try?

Now is the time to make a change and I want to help you get the best deal – because I am all about being frugal as well as putting our health at the top of the list.

Step One

Grab a Young Living Premium Starter Kit – my favorite it the Premium Starter Kit with the Home Diffuser #5462.

Premium Starter Kit

This kit comes with 11 bottles of pure essential oils that have endless uses, from emotional support, cleansing the skin, immune support, freshening the air, and promoting wellness. 

It also comes with a fabulous diffuser that will rock your world  – my house is never overcome with nasty chemical odors anymore, but instead – we breathe in essential oils that actually help our emotional state and aren’t poisoning us.

You also get some sample bottles, cards and two samples of my favorite anti-oxidant drink, NingXia Red.

Here’s what you get:

  • Home Diffuser
  • Premium Essential Oils Collection;
    • Lavender 5-ml
    • Peppermint Vitality™ 5-ml
    • Lemon Vitality™ 5-ml
    • Copaiba Vitality™ 5-ml
    • Frankincense 5-ml
    • Thieves® Vitality™ 5-ml
    • Purification® 5-ml
    • R.C.™ 5-ml
    • DiGize™ Vitality™ 5-ml
    • PanAway® 5-ml
  • Stress Away™ 5-ml
  • AromaGlide™ Roller Fitment
  • 10 Sample Packets
  • 10 Love It? Share It! Sample Business Cards
  • 10 Love It? Share It! Sample Oil Bottles
  • 2 NingXia Red® 2-oz. samples
  • Product Guide and Product Price List
  • Essential Oil Magazine
  • Essential Edge
  • Member Resources

And in May, every new member with a Premium Starter Kit purchase, receives a FREE 15 ML of Tangerine.

FREE Tangerine oil

Step Two

Grab the Brand New Thieves Home Cleaning Kit (#20421) – it’s the perfect introduction to natural cleaning and provides you with a foundation of cleaning tools and supplies to utilize Young Living’s 100% pure essential oils. It includes the tools you’ll need to clean and protect your home without using harsh, chemicals.  

Thieves Home Cleaning Kit

It contains:

  • Citrus Fresh™ Essential Oil Blend 5 ml
  • Lemon Essential Oil 5 ml
  • Pine Essential Oil 5 ml
  • Purification® Essential Oil Blend 5 ml
  • Thieves® Essential Oil Blend 5 ml
  • Thieves® Household Cleaner 14.4 oz.
  • Carrying Case
  • Stainless Steel Bucket
  • Amber Glass Spray Bottle 16 oz.
  • Cleaning Cloth
  • Cleaning Recipe Booklet

Step Three

Add Thieves Foaming Hand Soap 3 pk – so you can replace the chemical filled version you are using now with an all-natural, plant based formula!  It’s one of my favorite products.

Step Four

Start your journey on replacing items in your home with plant-based options by joining Young Living’s monthly box subscription program, called Essential Rewards.  You will earn a percentage back on your order each month and you can use toward free products – plus you will also get FREE products in your order from Young Living, depending on your order level.

Essential Rewards Program FREE products

Step Five

With this bundle I’ve put together, you will be grabbing over $390 worth of amazing items for your and your family for only $275.25 – saving $115 – plus you’ll be earning 10% back on your very first purchase, when you join Essential Rewards!  That’s 27 points towards free product.

Here are the FREE bonuses for May – if you want you can even add a few more things to your order and snag the 300 PV level – getting over $200 worth of product for free.

May 2017 Young Living Promos

And here’s the best part – I am offering $25 CASH BACK when you purchase your starter kit and join my community – where I offer support, guidance and a bucket full of great reference material to empower you as you start this new journey!!

Young Living new member special

Now is the time to create a chemical free home – you will NOT regret it, I guarantee it.  I offer a 30 day money back guarantee on the starter kit – so there’s no risk.  I want you to be happy and get the same wonderful benefits I have received over the past four years.

Ready to hop on the oily train?  You can check out more info here, where I have some great information and options on other starter kits.

Or if you are ready to get this box of goodness on it’s way to you PRONTO – go here and get started!  

I am excited for you to get started- it will change your life!

50 Years of Life, Motherhood & Marriage

19
Apr
2017

50 life lessons

I turned 50 earlier this month – a huge milestone.  

When we reach these milestones it gives opportunity to review our lives and really see what God has done and what he continues to strive to do in our lives.  Reflection brings many emotions as well as growth, and I thought I would share some of what I’ve learned over the past 50 years about motherhood, marriage and just life in general.

GRACE, GRACE, GRACE and more GRACE

I am learning I am the one I need to give more and more grace to.  I am certainly not perfect, but my expectations of myself certainly reach far beyond human capacity at times.  My husband is very good at reminding me of this.  I am not supermom, super wife, nor super friend and certainly make a ton of mistakes, but God’s grace covers it all.

Laughter is Healing

If you were in my daily life you’d discover I can be pretty darn serious.  I am learning to lighten up and find more fun in my life.  As a strong personality with huge goals, I can find it hard to relax and just have fun – but implementing a Sabbath is helping me keep balance in this area and have fun.

It’s Not About Me

This took me years to understand.  Many things in life really have nothing to do with me, but we can often take things personally.  Stepping back out of situations that arise and truly examining them has helped me in my marriage, motherhood and outside relationships.

Self-Care is Not a Bonus

In mothering especially, we give and give…. and if you are not filling yourself up, it will show in ugly ways.  For me, my temper is short and I tend to not be very positive.  Taking a run, getting a massage or coffee with a friend need to be scheduled by me!  No one is responsible for my self-care except me.

God is my Priority Daily

Things just do not go as smoothly if I don’t give my first few minutes of my day to the Lord.  Finding quiet to pray and get my head on straight for the day impacts myself and my family.  I’ve went through seasons where I’ve missed my morning quite time and they have been very lonely.

Apologies are Powerful

I am stubborn and it has taken me a long time to realize that an apology is so powerful in taking ownership of our actions.  I am still a work in progress in this area, but have come a long way.

A Smile Carrys Weight

When all else fails – smile.  I have been told I have a great smile and it makes me smile even more. I know I can shift an awkward moment by smiling, touch a heart of a friend who is struggling with a smile and give kindness to a stranger too.

Authenticity Trumps All

We’ve all lived in seasons where we try to not let others in, to see the ugly, messy side of our lives.  But it always – always backfires. I have found freedom in allowing others to see my messy side, the side that is not all that great and to know I am far from perfect.  I know God can use my ick for Him.

Never say NEVER!

When you think you are in control of your life, you’d better think again. We said we’d never do a few things – one is we’d never have more kids, however – here we are with a seven year old.  God did an amazing work in us to soften our hearts toward adoption.  We know now that our lives are for HIS glory, not ours and we are open to what He has in store for us – regardless if we think we are prepared, equipped or ready.

Take Care of Your Body

At 50, I am in the best health of my life – hands down!  After suffering from life-long depression and medicated for over 20 years and Lupus, an autoimmune disease, I have successfully found healing and restoration of my body. It took work, education and perseverance, but it was so worth it.  I now help others find that same power and it is pretty amazing.  I plan to live another 50 years and I imagine God will do amazing things with my life – all for HIS Glory!

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