The Danger of Comparison

30
Jan
2014

Comparison-Main-Motherhood

We’ve been sharing about the effect comparing ourselves has on our self-esteem, motivation and our perceived reality.  Comparison is like a poison that quickly seeps into other areas, creating dissatisfaction, and discontentment.  

Not too long ago I was going through a very discontent season and God called me out on it, I shared about it here.  I was spent and tired and felt really lost – but when I pushed in to find grace and ask forgiveness, God met me and healed my heart.

When Jill talked about how our high expectations end up fueling these scenes we see played out so perfectly in others’ lives, I saw very clearly how they can be a breeding ground for discontentment with our real lives.  What is worse is that we don’t even know it until it has truly poisoned our thinking and view.  We end up having a distorted perspective and viewpoint, she says this:

“It’s a subtle erosion of our satisfaction.  If we don’t recognize it, the discontentment can turn into disappointment, and then the disappointment can eventually turn into disillusionment.”

We need to keep our perspective clear and not fogged by the lenses we look at daily.  Unless you do not turn on TV, go to the grocery store, a PTA meeting for check Facebook – you are bombarded with what seems perfect.  

Take a step forward and recognize the desire that lies within to compare yourself to others.  When you recognize it and name it, it is a bit easier to try to curb.

APPLY

Here is the topic for this week from our discussion questions:

Identify one place where you tend to unfairly compare yourself to other moms.  Some  places to consider might include church, moms groups, grocery store, your child’s school, Facebook, mommy blogs, magazines, etc.  Ask God to help you identify when you are unconsciously making comparisons.  When you realize what you are doing, thank God for showing you your unconscious thoughts.  Then thank Him for making YOU the unique mom that you are.

Spillin’ the Beans

Here is where I come clean and answer the above for you.  

So, I struggle with several areas, all at the same time!  You see, I am right now an “older” mom of a toddler.  Most of those who have kids the age of my son, four, are much younger than I.  So perhaps they are in a bit better shape, wear cuter clothes because they are just a bit more “hip” and also have a fresher viewpoint of motherhood than I do.  

I struggle with not wanting to do all the crafty things I may have done with my kids who are much older when they were my son’s age.  I feel like I don’t fit in.  Period.  That is the exact line that has been achy to be released from my heart.

I don’t fit in as a mom of a four year old at 46 {almost 47}.

This is where I need to stop the train and check out what is TRUTH.  The Truth is that God placed this little guy in my life for a specific reason.  I may not know and understand what that reason is {okay, there are many reasons I do know, but don’t understand it all yet!}  I do know and believe there is a much bigger reason and beast that I am trying to conquer with this feeling that I don’t fit it all the time in this season.  Maybe it is to stay uncomfortable so I can help other moms who may be experiencing similar feelings – God doesn’t want us to get too comfortable because that can lead to pride – ouch!  Been guilty of that.

Perhaps being confident is good, but He doesn’t want me to become ‘over-confident’?  That could surely be the case as well.  Whatever the reason, I hope to find out one day, but for now I know I need to recognize when I compare, hold onto the truth, which is – God placed this little boy in my life at just this time because I was perfect for him to have as his mom.  I need to write that down over and over again, to have it embed in my heart and not let the enemies lies seep in.

I ask you, can you do the same???  Write a one sentence TRUTH out that you can hold onto even when you are feeling stuck in the comparison trap?

Get a jumpstart on your reading over the weekend by reading Chapter Two – feel free to share in the community over on the Facebook page and I will be back on Monday with our Week Two schedule.

No More Perfect Moms Week One

27
Jan
2014

Main-No-More-Perfect-Moms

It’s finally here, the first day of our new study!!  If you have not invited some friends to join us yet, please do.  There is room for everyone, another great feature of an online book study – no need to provide a huge room and I don’t have to make snacks for you all – {but I would if I could!}

Today is a pretty easy start, Monday’s will always be pretty low key.  I will give you the weeks reading assignment and you get to watch a fun video – who wouldn’t love that?  

I ask that each day as you begin reading or reading the blog post that you would humbly come before The Lord and ask Him to help open your eyes to areas that may be hidden to you, to reveal struggles and hidden issues you may have that could hinder your growth during this study.  I know He will meet you during this intentional time and will push you forward and challenge you!

When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.    – Viktor E. Frankl

So grab a cup of coffee and take it in ladies.

 
 

Week 1:  January 27 – 31, 2014

Monday – watch the video, download the discussion questions for WEEK ONE

Tuesday – come prepared by having read Chapter One, join the conversation

Wednesday – check in over at Facebook for a few questions

Thursday – read the blog post on applying what we’ve learned this week; get started reading Chapter 2

Was there something that spoke to you in the video?  Please share in the comments and hop over to say hello and introduce yourself either here or on the Facebook page.

A Day in the Life of an Oily Mom

21
Jan
2014

A Day in the Life of an Oily Mom

Hello to all of you who are visiting for the “Day in the Life of an Oiler” series which began yesterday over at My Blessed Life! We left off yesterday with Denise sharing at Wholesome Mommy. So I am here to start off the rounds for today! 

A Day in the Life of an Oiler Blogger Series

I am thrilled to take you through a “typical” day in my life and share how I use Young Living Essential Oils in our home every single day.  

Since I began a year ago to incorporate essential oils in our home, we have had some incredible results. I’ve been able to support my moods, support our immune system, calm our house down of those tiring toddler outbursts and emotions, and so much more.

Grab yourself a cup of tea (or coffee in my case, with a dash of raw cream) and sit back and enjoy walking through a day in my life. Please, remember though – I have used oils for a year. If you are new to using essential oils or have not even started, please do not get overwhelmed with my routine or what I use. This is a learning process and also one that is personal to everyone’s budget. You cannot get all the oils you would ever want or need all at once, so make a wishlist and keep adding to your collection a little bit at a time!

Warning: I am authentic and real. You will see me without a shower in the videos and honestly just being “off-the-cuff”, so forgive my bedhead and my bathrobe!

Morning Routine

I begin my morning early. I am up at 5:30am and go out and chug down a huge glass of water, as well as a vegetable capsule that is filled with 5 drops of Lemon Vitality Essential Oil. I may take another capsule in the afternoon, or have a cup of tea and add a few drops of Lemon Vitality in that (which is really yummy)!

This helps kickstart my digestive system. Lemon is a natural energizer, uplifting, and a powerful antioxidant. I feel revitalized and refreshed. That is how I want to start my day. I am off to have my devotional time and get myself set for the day.  

When my family begins to get up, we start our breakfast routine, which includes NingXia Red, Mineral Essence and Super B for me.

NingXia Red® is a powerful antioxidant drink that contains whole Ningxia wolfberry puree – a super blend of blueberry, aronia, cherry, pomegranate, and plum juices, natural stevia extract, grape seed extract, pure vanilla extract, and Orange, Yuzu, Lemon, and Tangerine essential oils. Its health benefits include support from head to toe, via a whole body nutrient infusion.

Mineral Essence™ is a balanced, full-spectrum ionic mineral complex enhanced with essential oils. Since I have been using this to help replenish my magnesium I have slept better, had more energy, and felt refreshed.  

Super B™ is a comprehensive vitamin complex containing eight essential and energy-boosting B vitamins: B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12. The complete B-vitamin profile in Super B not only assists in maintaining healthy energy levels, but it also supports the nervous system, aids in maintaining normal cardiovascular function, and helps with internal enzyme reactions

Remember: I already warned you of my horrible bedhead!

After we get dressed, my son and I have our little “oily routine” which I’ve created to fit the unique needs he has. He needs some help during his day managing his emotions (don’t we all!!!), focusing on tasks, monitoring his energy output, and keeping in balance. In addition, we always use Thieves to support our immune system.

I know many have asked what oils they can use on their children, how to apply, and what this looks like. I thought this was a perfect opportunity to share our routine in hopes it might help you create your own. Remember, little ones like to do things themselves, so if you can put most of your oils in roller bottles, it will help everyone!

Here is what I use in the video:  Valor (more on Valor here), Grounding, Peace and Calming (more on Peace and Calming here), and also my Special Recipe, which is:

15 drops Cedarwood, 15 drops Lavender, and 15 drops Vetiver in about 1 T carrier oil (Grapeseed or Coconut oil). I use an empty bottle. I had an empty Lavender bottle and filled it and put a roller fitment on top.

I have a lot of goodies I use all day long, so I combined them here for you. They include:  Young Living Thieves Toothpaste, Lip Balm, ART Skin Care System, Joy (more on Joy here), Progessence Plus, and Thieves Foaming Hand Soap.

I forgot to mention one other item that I use daily in our home and floats between the kitchen counter, bathroom, and in my purse – Animal Scents. I use it for minor skin irritations, occasional dry and irritated skin, and even put it on our dog who likes to lick her underside – A LOT! Animal Scents™ Ointment is blended with Melaleuca alternifolia and Myrrh, two of nature’s most powerful essential oils. It is a soothing salve formulated for external use on animals, but we humans love to use it and benefit too!

Animal Scents Ointment

Mid-Day Routine

I take a few other supplements during the day and wanted to mention those – Sulfurzyme, which is a supplement I use to help support my immune system, and Life 5, a high potency probiotic.

Daily Young Living Supplements

I run my diffuser all day in my home, switching between calming oils like Peace and Calming. But also as I sit and write or catch up on emails, I need a boost – on this day I chose to use Abundance, which was a new oil I had just received. It was perfect! This diffuser is the one you get included with your Premium Starter Kit. I love it and have two of these in our home.

Diffusing Abundance Essential Oil

I end up spending quite a lot of time in my laundry room. I am in there every day – funny how that turns out. So I certainly wanted to share how I use my oils in my laundry room. You’ll hear me mention Lavender, Purification, Thieves Household Cleaner, as well as my favorite dryer balls, Woolzies.

I love having Thieves Household Cleaner right under my sink. I use it to spray down counters, cabinets, the kitchen table, I spray on fruits and vegetables to remove all the toxic chemicals before we eat – it is so versatile. 

Thieves Cleaners

I have ventured out to using essential oils in recipes too! I love to experiment and what I enjoy about Young Living’s 100% Pure Essential Oils is that the Vitality line can be taken internally.  

Evening Routine

Our evening routine involves a few more essential oils and I use them in a detox bath, both myself and for my little guy. I love Lavender, Rosemary, and Harmony mixed with Epsom Salt. I also make a bath salt recipe and will use some of that pre-made mixture and add extra Epsom Salt.

Essential Oils Soak

When it is time to settle in for the night, I start the diffuser in my little one’s room. We alternate between Thieves at night and Peace and Calming. I have a total of 6 diffusers in our home, of course two of the Young Living, and also I have managed to add the MIU diffuser, which I love for bedrooms because the light can be turned off and you can determine the output volume and duration – plus the price is very reasonable. I also have the H2EO Ultrasonic Diffuser, which I also like for the same reasons as the MIU, but it is a bit higher in price.

Peaceful Sleep with Essential Oils

My bedtime routine involves a few “must-have” oils. Just before I slip under the covers I roll on some RutaVala, which is great for getting a good night’s sleep. I love that it is small, easy to roll-on, and I can use it if I wake in the middle of the night, which I did often and could not go back to sleep. But for the most part I sleep well and for the entire night now, but it is there in case of an emergency! I also use ImmuPower, Exodus II, and EndoFlex, putting them on the bottom of my feet and under my big toe.

Night Time Oils

So, there you have it – a lot of information and A LOT of me! I hope you learned a few things and maybe expanded your knowledge of using essential oils.

Young Living New Member Special

Are you ready to jump into this wonderful world of caring for yourself and your family naturally with essential oils? The time is now! Click here to learn more or contact the person who introduced you to “A Day in the Life of an Oiler” blog series!

Next up is Katy @ Goodness Gathering

Be sure to check out all 18 posts in “A Day In the Life of an Oiler” blogger series, click here.

 *These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am just a mom sharing my experience in order to help others, not a doctor.

8 Ways To Fit More Reading Into Your Day

14
Jan
2014

 Finding-Time-To-Read-Moms

I share a lot of books with you all that I read, and I am often asked, “How do you find time to read?”  I thought I would share with you how I find time to read – and that is the key word – FIND!

Time doesn’t just magically appear.  You have to put a priority on managing the time you have for the things that are important to you.  So if reading is important, you will need to carve out time purposefully as well as use the time that often goes unused in effective ways.

As we look to start a new online book study in a couple weeks, I want to challenge you to make time to read, be prepared for the discussion each week and be committed to reading, both for pleasure as well as to improve yourself as a mom, wife and woman.

Here is how I find time to read, amide the juggling of motherhood duties:

Morning Hours

Morning is by far my most favorite time to read, before everyone else gets up.  I have a regular routine of getting up before my family, it fluctuates on time, but it can be anywhere from 5:15 AM to 6:30 AM depending on circumstances of the evening before  {Like the other night, I didn’t get to bed til after 10 PM because I just HAD TO watch Downton Abbey – I mean priorities right?}  So I didn’t get up til 6:30 AM.  But I much prefer having more time in the morning for my devotional time and then diving into whatever I am currently reading.

Make Waiting Time Count

All that time can be lost or put to good use, the waiting.  Whether it is waiting for an appointment, waiting in the car pool line, waiting on hold, the grocery line – if you add up all that time, it really counts.  Have a book with you at all times, you can pick it up and read a few lines and benefit from that time rather than really looking at it as wasted time.

Portable books

This is where things really pay off.  A lot of us have portable devices to carry our books with us very easily.  Most have heard of Kindle books, but even if you do not have a Kindle, you can enjoy the incredible benefits of having a book on several devices all at once.  You can download Kindle reading APPS for your phone, iPad, Mini-iPad and computer.  I love the flexibility of reading a book on my iPad Mini, but also having the same books on my phone.  By downloading the Kindle APP for my phone I can access the same book I was reading in the morning on my iPad later in the day while waiting at an appointment and it knows exactly where I left off.

This is by far one of the easiest ways to get more book reading for your time costing you nothing!

Exercising

I haven’t been real good lately with reading while I am on the treadmill, but there was a period of time when I was walking that this was a great way to get ahead on my reading.  Now, I am running, which makes it a bit tricky to keep my eyes focused on the page, but it can be done – if you are skilled!  So if you are a walker, use your iPad on prop it up, or you can even use your phone and hold it while walking on the treadmill.  If you are an audiobook fan…..keep reading!

Audio Books

If you enjoy listening to podcasts in the car, then why not add books to your options?  Our library system has a wonderful set up so that I can download audio books right on my phone and play – love it!  You can also enjoy audio books on the treadmill so as well as grocery shopping {sans kids!} and doing household tasks.  Did you know that there is an option on amazon.com to pay a bit more on a kindle book and get Whispersync on some eligible books, which allows you to switch back and forth between the text version and audio?  It is so cool!

I have used Audible.com before I enjoy the ease of downloading books and their selection.  You can grab a 30 day free trail too, which gives you a chance to try it out and see if it works for you.  The variety of books is pretty amazing, more than what my library offers for free.  

Ax the TV

I had to set up some perimeters with my kids with regard to the TV watching in our home.  It all started last summer and I was the bummer mom in everyone’s eyes!  I decided that from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm the TV would stay off.  It works well, and amazingly enough, I even benefited from it being off – I was able to pick up a book more often and enjoyed some quiet reading while my little guy played outside or was in the bathtub.  See what turning the TV off will do with your reading time!  I dare you!

Self-Care 10

How about that little task that appears daily on the Confident Mom Weekly Household Planner – up at the top – Self-Care 10?  You can grab 10 minutes a day at least and apply that towards you needs of caring for yourself.  If reading is something that you enjoy and that fills your tank up, use that as one of the fun things you can do each day to care for yourself.

Before Bed

This one can be a bit tricky for me, as I tend to drift off really easy when I read, most especially in the evenings.  Half of the week I am home alone, my husband travels and my older kids are at their other parent’s house, so it is just me and my four year old.  So at 8:30 PM, I am left to my very own agenda – no one else but me and what I want to do.  I often will crawl into bed and open a book.  I love the quiet and can often read a chapter or two before the sleepiness overcomes me.

When is your favorite time to catch up on reading?

The Heart of the Home

20
Nov
2013

Kitchen-Heart-Home

Chapter Fifteen:

A few key sentences that got my attention:

“An organized kitchen helps me focus on what’s important, instead of being mentally drained by a mess.”
…I’m discouraged from starting anything….. It just takes too much mental energy for me to overcome clutter.”
“Not only does clutter drain energy from me, but there is no room for anything beautiful when there’s stuff all over my counters.” 

 

The big one for me:

 

“Allow yourself to envision your ideal purpose for your kitchen”

I think one of the areas that I can actually keep somewhat clean and organized is my kitchen, but I know this is an area which can be very stressful for most families.  I am fortunate that I have a large space in our kitchen and it also has an eating area and it is connected to a family room.  I love the open space and ability to have everyone in the room while I am cooking or preparing other things in the kitchen.

But it does create a ‘larger’ space for junk to congregate too, especially with my older kids.  They come in and drop their backpacks, papers, computers, phones, etc.  You get it!  My goal I guess it to come up with a plan to show them where they can put their items without clogging up my nice island.  In fact, we just put in a new counter top, and I love to see the counter top – so coming up with a drawer, or area for them is better than for me to continuing nagging them!

I am pretty good with organizing food and keeping a pantry that is fairly easy to navigate.  Is that a struggle for you?

Don’t get overwhelmed with all the tasks that Glynnis lists in this chapter to cover.  You can take one or two this week and add a few for the next few weeks, allowing time to sort through areas that are a concern for you.  I do love her tips:

Invest in a few really good kitchen items, and you will find you need less – so true!

Using a basket on the counter for odd and end items to help them find a place.

Keeping a permanent marker to date food – this one is a MUST for me, I freeze a lot of leftover items and my worst nightmare is opening the freezer and finding stuff that doe snot have a label.  I have no idea what it is and it will then likely be left unused.

Consider these questions, answer them in your journal, comment here or you can leave your comment on the private Facebook page.  

  • What is your vision for your kitchen?
  • Can you provide a place for your family members to place things and then gently train them to use those spaces?
  • Does simplifying your kitchen with less spark an interest?  How can you take away some of the items that may have been bought with a sense of providing an ‘easier’ way to do things, but ultimately just took up space and time cleaning up?
  • Can you take some time this week to clear out a pantry, cupboard or other area which has been haunting you?