If you’re looking for a new book you can dive into and get a whole lot out of, you need to check out Kathi Lipp’s and Cheri Gregory’s “You Don’t Have to Try So Hard: Ditch Expectations and Live Your Own Best Life.”
I love the mini-quizzes packed inside the book for a real hands-on, applicable approach to the advice they give. I also appreciate their personal stories as ways to exemplify living in a world where we’re conditioned to try harder and harder rather than find peace, contentment, and truth in the only one who can possibly provide that; God.
This book is too good not to share with you and that is why I’m giving away one copy to one lucky friend. All you have to do is leave a comment on my blog about something that overwhelms you that you’d like to let go of. I will choose a random winner by Monday, September 17th, 2018 by 8pm CST. Winner will be announced here so be sure to check back in to see if you’ve won!
It’s the beginning of August, which means fall publications are out with fun back-to-school articles and all-things new and trendy are on full display. My writing is no different. You’ll see that my posts, articles and talks are focused on things I’m currently using or doing with my own kids. My newest article in Connection Magazine, “5 Fun Back-to-School Items” is hot off the press and ready for you to read.
Some of the items I recommend are currently on sale. If you happen to buy the Bentgo Lunchbox I talk about in the article, you should check out my piece in San Diego Familyl Magazine on “52 Easy School Lunches” to get your creative juices flowing on what to put IN the lunchbox.
Happy Back-to-School shopping!
I had the privilege of writing a guest post for Michele Cushatt last week. My post, “A Mom’s Survival Guide to Simplifying the Summer With Special Needs Kids”, was a therapeutic one to write. While I love and enjoy each summer I have with my kids, the unstructured time can throw us for a loop at times; especially for my son, Dylan.
You can find encouraging words and a few tips on how we not only make it through the summer but how we make memories doing so.
I’d love to hear some of your summer tips!
Father’s Day will be here before you know it! Check out my article here, to read about this Paperweight Craft as well as 10 other fun and free things to do for Father’s Day this year.
¼ cup salt
½ cup flour
¼ cup water
Tiny rocks or pebbles
Mix first three ingredients together in bowl. Roll into a ball and then flatten out about ½ inch thick. Place pebbles in dough to spell out ‘Dad Rocks’ pressing firmly but not too hard. Bake at 250 degrees for 2-2 ½ hours. Let cool on cookie sheet.
One of my favorite publications to write for is right here in northwest Arkansas. Peekaboo Magazine is a great resource for parents who are looking for up-to-date events and parenting advice. My latest article about The Mother’s Day dare has been a favorite among my mom friends. See if you’re ready to take the dare.
As the New Year approaches, I find myself thinking about my kids and trying to gauge how much they really understand about the idea behind making New Year’s resolutions. I wrote this article that appears in January’s edition of South Florida Parenting Magazine to teach (myself) and others how to get the message across.
What are your New Year’s resolutions? Have you talked about them with your kids? I bet you’d be surprised to hear what your child’s resolutions are. I know I was!
I was diagnosed with clinical depression almost 15 years ago. I was in college and going to therapy once a week but still couldn’t get my thoughts to move in a positive direction. When I started taking medication for my depression – it was like a whole new world opened up for me. I felt like myself again. I was able to bounce from one thing to another without the weight of questioning every decision. Fast forward to today and I find myself going through a medication change and feeling all of those helpless, negative thoughts I felt so long ago. That’s the thing about depression – it has the power to take you down out of nowhere.
The difference between then and now is that I have 3 children…3 little children and I am still very much in the thick of parenthood. Sure, there are no more binkies or diapers or sleepless nights but there are hurt feelings, let downs, and boo boos that still demand my attention. I am a mom with littles who has depression and sometimes it’s really, really hard to get out of bed.
Sometimes I find myself questioning every parenting decision big and small. Should I have let her have the IPAD that long this morning? Should I have allowed him to stay at his friend’s house all day? Did I read enough to my kids today? Am I messing them up? You may be thinking, we all have those feelings and I don’t suffer from depression…the difference for those of us with depression is that these little talks we have with ourselves in our heads are debilitating. They consume us. They stop us from continuing on with our day. They cripple us. They make us feel like we can’t breathe. They make us question EVERYTHING. It is a battlefield in my head and I can’t stop it.
I’m a pretty open book but I don’t normally talk about depression with my friends because I usually have it under control. And really, who wants to talk about this stuff anyways? It’s hard to understand and explain to people who don’t know what it feels like. It’s also hard to be a mom when you feel like you’re not doing a good job. I know this is the depression talking and it’s not reality but I want you to know if you’re reading this and you are a mom who has depression or thinks she has depression – you can feel better. There are ways to get out of the pit. There are things you can do to help you get out of bed even when you can’t think past getting out of bed.
Start with one small step today. Just do one small thing to feel better. That will look different for each of you. It might be calling your doctor and scheduling an appointment to talk about what you’re feeling if meds are right for you. It might be calling a therapist and scheduling your very first appointment. It might be telling your husband you think you’re depressed even though you have an amazing life. It might be taking extra care of yourself today by not having a to do list. It might be just sitting on the couch, holding your children because you don’t know what else to do.
If you are a mom with littles who is suffering from depression, know this – it will pass. These feelings will pass and you will feel better again. You will feel like yourself again and you will get through this.
I found this checklist on the Internet and I think it’s a great place to start if you don’t know if you have depression. Hang in there mama. You’re doing a great job and this will pass.
I don’t put too much pressure on myself when it comes to New Year’s resolutions but I do think it’s important to set some goals for myself each year. As I look back on 2016, I realize how many blessings actually occurred in my life. If you haven’t done this yet, I encourage you to write down at least 5 blessings you can think of off the top of your head. It really puts things in perspective and helps set the tone for the rest of the day – even the next few days. It’s important to keep yourself accountable to not just tangible goals but to mental ones, too. That’s why I’ve decided that one of my goals for the new year will be to fill my head with scripture instead of Facebook.
One of the ways I plan on doing this is to read the Bible in its entirety. Yep. I’m going for it. One of my friends, knowing I wanted to do this in the new year, has lent me a chronological Bible. How did I not know the Bible wasn’t already in chronological order? Did you? I guess that’s a good place for me to start!
A few other goals for 2017:
- Continue training for my first half and actually run my first half which is in April.
- Schedule myself at least one speaking event each month (for a total of 12).
- Sell 100 more books.
- Get control of my sweets intake. (It’s bad).
- See my family in Massachusetts.
- This is a big one (that goes in this spot right here) but I’m not ready to share it yet. I will do a proper announcement when the time is right. Just know that it’s big – something unexpected – something God had planned way before I ever caught wind of it but something I am due diligently working at 100% right now. And NO – I am not pregnant. But, I am looking forward to sharing this great, big news with you when I’m ready.
PS – I am always looking for places, venues, meetings to speak at. If you know someone or are in a group right now that you know I would be a good fit for – please contact me. You can find a list of my specialties under my events tab.
Christmas is over but I wanted to share some of the fun things I made this holiday season so you can order some of your own stuff for any upcoming birthdays, events, etc. you might have coming up!
The folks over at Paper Mart were gracious enough to send me some fun stuff to decorate my house with and wrap my presents in. I’m pretty picky about the type of wrapping paper I use. Seriously. I don’t like the cheap stuff that rips at every corner and causes me more stress than necessary when getting gifts ready to be enjoyed by friends and family. Paper Mart’s wrapping paper is some of the best if not THE BEST wrapping paper I have ever used. It never ripped and it was thick enough to cover even the oddest-shaped gifts. I got more compliments on this paper on Christmas morning from my family than I had anticipated. They have all sorts of colors and patterns – not just holiday.
I also made these cute paper straw ornaments using Paper Mart’s straws. It was one of the easiest crafts I have ever done and they turned out perfect. I put some on my tree to use as ornaments and the rest I used to decorate my friends’ gifts with. They were a hit! Check out my article in Connection Magazine on how to make these.
I also ordered some of their clear cello bags to put my baked goods in. I like the fact that there are A LOT of bags that come in each order. None of this 10-bag count thing. These bags would be perfect for weddings, baby showers, birthdays, etc. They have all sorts of designs and of course, they have the clear bags if you’d like to dress them up yourself with ribbons and bows. I will be using what I have left of these bags for my kids’ Valentine’s Day parties at school.
And there you have it! Check out Paper Mart’s website when you’re shopping for your next event if you want something convenient and shipped right to your doorstep.
Thank you to everyone who has bought my book and plans on buying my book, “I See You: Helping Moms Go from Overwhelmed to In Control”. Your support and encouragement mean the world to me and I want you to know I read each and every one of your comments, posts, and emails. Keep them coming! Almost 200 of my books are out in the world right now and I’m praying each one of those books lands right in the hands of a mama who needs to hear the words I so desperately want her to hear, You are amazing and You are enough.
In the spirit of the new year coming upon us, I’d like to extend an invitation to you. I am taking the contents of my book one step further and will be helping a handful of you with diving deeper into the area of creating margin in your life. I only have 4 spots left and it will be on a first come, first serve basis. Once I reach my total of 6 women, I will close this workshop. Want to know what the heck I’m talking about? Glad you asked! Check out these details:
The “Overwhelmed to In Control” Mastermind Workshop will be a 4-week time investment.
- You must have the book, “I see You” and have read it since we will be working directly from that.
- The whole point of this workshop is to help you create margin in your life to free up space where you might be feeling overwhelmed. So, you will need to want to make it a priority to sort out whatever it is that is overwhelming you in your life. I can’t make that a priority for you. Only you can do that. I can help you sort things out and set a plan and give you direct access to me.
- You will get access to me for 4 weeks. What that means is that you can email me, call me, and private message me on Facebook with questions you have about the book and I will make you my priority in responding to your questions/comments.
- I will provide you with daily prompts every morning, delivered right to your inbox (31 to be exact) that will help you jump start the idea of creating more margin in your life. Here is an example of a prompt you would receive: Day 1 – Today, I want you to make your bed. It doesn’t have to be perfect but I do want you to make this a priority. If you are someone who already makes your bed, kudos to you! I challenge you to take it one step further and change your sheets today. There’s something about making your bed that sets the tone for the entire day. If you get too busy in the morning and miss the opportunity, don’t worry, just do it when you get back home and give yourself 5-10 minutes to make it happen.
- We will be using the Overwhelmed to In Control worksheets in the back of the book. Please be prepared to either write in your book, photocopy the pages or print them from my website. I know these have been unavailable on my website in the past but the link is now fixed. You can find them here.
- We will also be using the ABC Scripture Cards . I have a fun way we’re going to use these to help us throughout our 4 weeks together.
- I will be offering an introductory rate for this first workshop and it will be available to only 6 women. I have 4 spots left and would love for you to join us! The cost for this 4-week workshop is $29.95. That’s less than a dollar a day! After this first round, the Overwhelmed to In Control workshop will go up in price to $99.95.
- Workshop begins on Sunday, January 1, 2017. Will you be there?