Education, Gardening, Health, motherhood, Random, Reflection, Woman

Plant the Seed

We have all heard this before.

Well, maybe most of us…

Those who plant the seed may not always be the one who gets to water that seed. But, if we are blessed, we may be able to witness that seed sprout and grow in the future.

I have to slow down and remind myself to be patient. Especially in times of seed planting… not literally in seed planting, for I tend to have a black thumb.

But my type of seed planting is that of encouragement or knowledge or just… wisdom from a mid-life mama.

I have watched how my own four children have grown into some amazing human beings. As much as I want to take credit for their awesomeness, I realize that most of my “mothering” was really seed planting of their hearts and souls. I gave them consistency and intention and a whole lot of love and grace.

I believe that our society is lacking so much growth these days. The soil of our souls is depleted, and when a seed is planted we tend to grow cold, grow weeds, or just wither up and die.

We are in desperate need of a revival. A societal revival that emphasizes nourishing the soul of our souls. Taking time to find the things that make us grow as humans.






Remember, as I share my thoughts with you I am preaching to the choir. I am my own audience, too. I need to hear and see and believe these things.

For then, when my soul is nourished, the seeds that I plant in myself can grow in a healthy way. And I can bring the fruits of my labor to you, dear reader.

May you be blessed today because of your investment to become process driven, too.




Random, Reflection

Bend and Snap Your Way to Life

I am a child of the 80s.

I love anything and everything that shines brightly, promotes big hair, and sings without any auto tunes.

And I am a fan of glow sticks. Those little neon tubes are so fun to crack, shake, and wear. It reminds me of my younger years running around Disneyland at night as the parade marched by and the fireworks blasted in the air.

As someone who is methodically meandering through the middle aged years, I find life more complicated. In the past I could shake off a minor hiccup and keep life going at full throttle. But nowadays I find myself hitting the brakes, or even going in reverse.

This past month has been one of those “hitting the brakes” periods for me. I experienced a setback recently that felt like I had undone all the healing and progress I had made since 2014.

I was mad at myself.

I felt ashamed. Bewildered. Confused.

But I am learning in these process driven moments that it is okay to bend backwards. Maybe even break a bit while we put on the brakes.

—> Break while we brake. <— that’s good stuff right there.

So I am writing this to encourage you. To give yourself permission and forgiveness and GRACE to slow down. Stop if you must. REVERSE IF YOU HAVE TO.

But, after a spell, find the momentum to start again. Find a friend and share your feelings. Read a good meme to make you laugh out loud. Seek the things that fill your soul.

We are all little neon glow sticks ready to shine. We may need a nudge or a bend or twist to light up. Just like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde… girl, you gotta bend and snap! It works every time!!

Random, Woman

Woman Up!

ImageYes, we can do it! We are women, mothers, daughters, girls on the grow!

Rosie the Riveter is one of my favorite icons of the 1940s. She emulates all that women wanted to be in that time (at least I hope so). She is still feminine and beautiful, but she has muscle and determination. It’s a win-win picture in my opinion. I wasn’t born in that era, but I know how hard it must have been to have lived during that time. The men were off at war, and the women had to stay home and take care of business. They had to become single mothers and entrepreneurs and instant career women. They had no choice but to be strong.

“My mom says that being “boss” and “bossy” are two very different things.” ~ Andi from Space Camp

Recently, a new slogan has been popping up in the media about teaching girls to be leaders, and to slam the word “bossy.” As much as I subscribe to the anti-bossy understanding, there may be some who could take this slogan to the extreme. I admit that I have called my own child “bossy” when I believed she was out of line and disrespectful. But I also know that I explained to her why I used that term to describe her actions. It was her actions that made her bossy, but she herself is not bossy. She is just strong in mind and speech!

No apologies! There is absolutely nothing wrong with being strong and speaking one’s mind. I am ALL IN when it comes to standing up for oneself.

This is the best time in history to be a woman by far. We have rights that rival our male counterparts. We are recognized for our strengths, our intelligence, our maturity, and our leadership abilities. I think we should speak our mind when necessary. I believe that we should exert our strengths as needed.

In a former post I had written about the difference between being feminist and having feminism. (I’ll put the link here).

Woman Up!

I believe there is such a thing as being biblically feminine. Here we go again, bringing up the Bible. Yes, those ancients text still utter truth in daily living. Some women take it to the extreme by not wearing makeup, covering up their heads, and not ordaining themselves with jewelry. Honestly, I am a little bit of a rebel. I don’t wear a covering, but I do respect those women who do. I do wear a little makeup and the occasional jewelry, but I don’t judge the women who don’t wear makeup or jewelry. By abiding by biblical standards I want to still show respect for myself, my husband, my children, and my faith by my actions and my beliefs. I have adopted the modern-day style of clothing, but on the inside I am still very much old-fashioned in my core values and beliefs.


Our American culture is so vastly different from what it used to be. The message can remain the same although the methods may change. The message, I believe, is to continue to embrace self-respect through the values by which you were raised. The key is self-respect: believe in yourself and your God-given strengths, skills, and standards. Go ahead, be a Modern Day Woman. Embrace yourself in the current culture, but be careful to not let the current culture dictate how you should live. You are the only one who can choose your methods for being the best woman you can be.

Well I hope that I made one person think about this topic. I am not anti-feminist, but rather, I am pro-feminism. I embrace my femininity, and I am thankful for all that I have been given as a woman. I hope that you’ll be thankful, too, if you are female.


Random, Reflection, Woman

A million and one (but who's counting?)…

It’s been a few months, but I wanted to revisit the world of blogging. I am a subscriber to a few sites, and many of them are very similar. I am sure that each person has a passion in her posts. I love reading their ideas, viewing their pictures, and heck, even trying to figure out how they add in all the cute photoshopy-type of clip art!

I am not one of those computer-techy people. I have a husband who can help me with the fancy stuff. I just like to type. So, I’ve labeled this post as “A million and one” for the millions of bloggers out there, of which I am one of them.

Nothing of great importance is happening at this time. No epiphanies, no special events to brag about (other than my husband’s recent 40th birthday celebration), and definitely no plans. Just the daily grind of living. But, I love that.

A simple day is when I awake (and today, I am crediting my wakefulness to the sinus pressure in my head at 3:50 a.m.) with energy for the new day. The house is quiet, and I actually have some “time” to spend it on me. I carve out 30 minutes for exercise, and walking outdoors is my all-time favorite. As much as I would love to incorporate a workout DVD into my routine, the stillness of the home calls for continued silence and peace.

One by one my children arise to the smell of coffee brewing, the tinkering of my incessant need to clean, or even perhaps the hopeful allure of a warm breakfast. The best memories I have of my childhood summers were the days when I would linger in my pajamas for hours and not do a blessed thing!

My current reality calls me to the backyard. Two goats and four chickens await fresh water and their food replenished. It is so nice to walk out and see them in their glory of the dawning day. I have learned that my chickens love to eat their food when it is moistened by the sprinkles of water that cover the ground. The goats are independent, as they would rather play in the nearby wood pile than to let me show some attention.

But, these dog-days of summer are competition in one regard. Modern technology has vied for the attention of my millennial-born children. They always prefer to be plugged in, logged on, or otherwise electronically entertained. I am constantly encouraging them to unplug, log off, and go outdoors while the temps are bearable. Today also marks the start date for summer school. So, hopefully, books will be opened, pencils will be scrambling upon paper, and brain cells will be engaged. That’s my hope, anyway.

My hat is off to you, dear reader. As you awaken and count your blessings for this day, I wonder what you will be doing? Share your comments, your thoughts, or even your story. For then, your reply would make my counting “a million and two”…


Wait and See

I just finished watching the movie, “Julie and Julia”, and I began to ponder some ideas. If you haven’t seen the move, please do… it is great. Both Meryl Streep and Amy Adams deserved an Oscar for their performances. But, the idea behind the plot intrigued me. What can I be doing to stretch myself in personal growth? Is there an option, like learning how to master the art of french cooking, for me?

I thought about pursuing a similar goal of learning how to cook better, just like Julie did.  But, I really don’t love to cook that much. Don’t get me wrong, I like to cook, but I do not love it. I would rather reorganize and decorate a room. Yet, still I want to be able to set a goal, and attain it. And, not just for personal growth, but to make an impact on others, just like Julia.

So, as I was driving to my former house to clean up the pool, I realized what I need to do. I don’t want to share my secret with you, not yet. You’ll have to wait and see. But, for those of you who know me personally, you will be involved in this project of mine. Right now I am calling it “Project 365” in honor of Julie’s one year goal to cook like Julia Child. But, my project is different, much different, and it does not involve one inkling of cooking.

My project is for my personal growth, but it is also my hope that you will grow from it, too. I will share my project with each one of you that responds to me. This is all I can share for now. Don’t ask for hints… just wait and see.

Education, Faith, Health, Marriage and Family, Random, Reflection

Truly Thankful

I heard about an interesting way to be thankful this month: make a daily post of what you are thankful for during the month of November. I have tried to be consistent in my posts each day; here you will see a list of what I made for which I am truly thankful.

Thursday, November 26: thankful for forgiveness… “amazing grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now I’m found, was blind but now I see.” Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!

Wednesday, November 25: I’m thankful for the holidays that remind me of what’s truly important, and all the old-fashioned music and memories that come along!

Tuesday, November 24: thankful for a Sovereign God who knows the beginning and the end, the Alpha and the Omega, the peace the passes all understanding.

Monday, November 23: thankful for fresh starts and second chances in life!

Sunday, November 22: I’m thankful for being a woman, and all of its qualities: daughter by birth, sister by chance, wife by love, mother by opportunity, friend by choice, and child of heaven by faith!

Saturday, November 21: thankful for the hypocrisy of mankind… it enables me to stop looking at the speck in my friend’s eye and pull out the giant log in my own eye!

Friday, November 20: thankful that my husband is still finding new clients and able to retain the existing ones… so, touche’ to this depressed economy! When there’s a will, there’s a way!

Thursday, November 19: thankful for little daily reminders that tell me to slow down and enjoy each moment.

Wednesday, November 18: Thankful for my relationships with people…. othewise this social networking thing would be in vain!

Tuesday, November 17: I am thankful for the sunshine we get 300 days a year, and I’m thankful that the temps are “normal” for 6 months a year. So get outside and enjoy your day!

Monday, November 16: I’m thankful that I can homeschool my kids in freedom. I may not always have this opportunity, but for now, I love teaching my own at home!

Sunday, November 15: I’m thankful for my faith and for the many friends and family who share it with me 🙂

Saturday, November 14: I’m thankful that my children have chosen good friends to associate with… it’s a continual process to teach them that “bad company corrupts good morals” (from Proverbs)…

Friday, November 13: skipped this one… maybe it’s superstition?

Thursday, November 12: thankful for healthcare facilities like Phoenix Childrens Hospital who are taking care of my niece.

Wednesday, November 11: I am thankful for all of the veterans who have served our country. I am grateful to my father, who served in World War II and Korea, and is now resting peacefully in heaven. May God continue to bless those who serve Him through acts of selflessness and honor.

Tuesday, November 10: I am thankful for beautiful weather in the fall in the Southwest!

Monday, November 9: cars, computers, and construction… if the men didn’t invent these things, where would we be today? I am thankful for the men in my life 🙂

Sunday, November 8: had a great day with our new friends and our visit with Papa. The kids can’t stop talking about their weekend. Thanks for the great memories!

Saturday, November 7: thankful for stargazing tonight at the Challenger Space Center! So fun! We all enjoyed looking at Jupiter, the Andromeda Galaxy, The Owl Constellation, The Seven Sisters, The Ring Nebula… and I saw 2 shooting stars for the encore!!!

Friday, November 6: thankful for adoption search websites. My husband and his birth mom have found each other!

Thursday, November 5: thankful for technology, although it doesn’t always have its advantages!

Wednesday, November 4: thankful for the birth of my firstborn son! Can’t believe he is 14 today!

Tuesday, November 3: thankful for unit studies on Egypt history.

Monday, November 2: thankful for the ever-changing clothing industry. From bell-bottoms to skinny jeans… where would we be without denim?

Sunday, November 1: thankful for the wonderful “bondfire” we had in our driveway with our friends and neighbors. We are so blessed!


Always on my mind

My mind is always thinking about something. That ‘something’ could be nothing important or it can be in need of immediate attention. The OCD in me wants to make everything an “A” on the priority list. There are no Bs or Cs. I know I need to spare myself the trouble of trying to accomplish everything at once. I am trying to figure out how to eat the elephant… one bite at a time.

But, I do want to mention that you, the reader, are always on my mind. I think about how you will feel when you read my thoughts. I think about the reaction you may experience when I say something that just doesn’t sit right with you. And I also think about the times that you may smile because I have encouraged you.

I’m not sure where I am going with this post. I just had a sense to post something new. But I wanted to let you know that, if you dare to be my friend, then you are on my mind when I write. A blog is like a hallmark card: I care enough to write to the very best! In the meantime, I will try to think of something profound for my next post.


The American Dream

What is the American Dream? Is it the opportunity to buy a house? Is it the opportunity have a 9 to 5, Monday through Friday job, weekends off, paid holidays, low-cost insurance, and two-weeks paid vacation? Is the opportunity to invest into a 401K, buy some savings bonds, buy a fancy car, and have all the modern appliances and technologically advanced products in the home? Is it owning a computer, and iPod, or the latest cell phone?

I am coming to grips with a reality that was once my American Dream. I grew up in a rental neighborhood, living on the “wrong side of the tracks”… literally. The train tracks that ran along Lincoln Avenue created a zip code barrier that would place my public education opportunity in the ghetto schools. Fortunately, I was able to transfer to a better district, but then I had to learn another lesson from the rich kids: how to keep up with the Jones’.

I swore to myself that I would not follow the path of my parents. I would not be greedy and spend on credit. I would save a portion of my income, and I would buy a house. I would live in a comfortable neighborhood, and I would have the American Dream. I have not lived up to all of my aspirations, though. At least, not yet.

To recount the first paragraph I have accomplished, bought, or owned all of the things I believed that would make me comfortable and happy. I was fortunate to buy a home in 1999 with my husband. I have been fortunate enough to be a stay-at-home-mom and raise my children (with the exception of the first two years of my firstborn). I have worked the Monday-through-Friday 9-to-5 job that offered paid vacations, sick days, holidays off, weekends off, low-cost health insurance, and a 401k plan. I even had the opportunity to buy two new cars (on credit, of course), and trade them in for something “bigger and better.”

So, where did all this affluence go? What has become of me? As I am sitting here, writing and pondering, I am not in sorrow. I smile at the future because of the hard lessons I am learning. I made some mistakes, I’ve made poor choices, and I’ve regretted a few decisions.

So here is where I am:
I can bake bread from scratch; I can sew my own clothes; I can make homemade laundry soap; I can read books instead of watch the electronic babysitter; I can teach my own children with a no-cost curriculum.

Things that I still need/want to learn:
To knit, to change the oil in my car, to cut my kids’ hair, to grow my own garden successfully, to raise chickens for meat and eggs, to learn to live without every modern invention in my possession.

Things I have learned to live without:
A microwave, a cell phone, a second car, cable television.

This may all seem weird, but all those things I have possessed or acquired have not made me any happier. The American Dream is a facade, a mirage of consumerism masked delightfully as happiness. I choose to take the narrow road. I now hope for a simpler life, one of which I can sit in my yard and count the stars. I can have a conversation with my children and not be interrupted by a telephone or a television. I dream of the chance to grow my own food, and be resourceful at every turn.

This is my life and my dream so far. What is your American Dream?


Out of sorts…

Okay, I know this will post on FB, too, but I have been battling with an inner struggle lately. I hate to admit it, since I love to be surrounded by positive things and positive people. I am about to have another birthday, and I don’t like the fact that I am entering my late 30s. I’ll be 37, and it is starting to feel like an extra 5 pound dumbbell on a piece of gym equipment.
I know that I will pull through this, but in the meantime, I am devouring every book of interest from the library. I have been reading some mystery novels, and other forms of non-fiction that pertain to homemaking or being a better mom (and wife, and spouse, and person…) The only problem with all this reading is that I have been out of sorts with all the input, and I don’t have an outlet…
I guess what I am really aching for is… a good friend, female only, please, because I have a dear husband. I know I have some really great friends out there, but for some reason, I haven’t had the opportunity to connect with anyone in my current town. I need someone I can talk to, and listen to, and they won’t ignore me, or feel weird around me. I would like to find someone to meet for coffee, or browse the local bookstore, meet at the park, or whatever.
Sounds crazy, right? Well, wherever you are and whoever you are, I am praying that we’ll meet… or perhaps, meet again. Someone who is married, has kids, has a strong faith in God, who shares the same interests. You know… like a friend from childhood who has been there for years and years.
Enough said, and my prayers will continue…


One World Collision

“Stop the World I want to get off” was a quote I read from a poster that hung in my English high school class. I’ll never forget those words, but for some reason I cannot remember the picture behind it. Ever since then I have said those words in my mind when my “world” seemed to collide with itself. Whether I was dealing with issues at home, issues at work, or issues at school, I knew I could only handle so much of the world.

What is life like for you in your world? Do you live life at full speed, never catching your breath, or do you try to find some balance and serenity in your unobstructed view of life? As for me, I have found that my life resembles a roller coaster ride. There are days when I feel like I am climbing up to the heavens and waiting for the thrill of being on top of the world. Other days I feel like I am racing to the bottom, hoping that I don’t crash or fall off my path. Yet, there are days when I sit in the seat at the starting gate, all strapped in my seat, waiting for life to start.

There are no repeats in this life. Everyday is a new chance to make something better in my life than the previous day. I have to choose to wake up happy, smile at my surroundings, and face my world square in its eyes. If I choose to do the opposite, well, let’s just say, “if momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” That’s another great quote I use from time to time, too.

As I look beyond my personal world, I see so many other things happening around me. My community is growing and changing each day; my state is growing and changing, too. And, yes, the country in which I live is changing at a rate faster than I’d like to accept. If we look at the Earth, the entire world that gives us life and abundant resources, it seems like an awfully big place. I cannot imagine trying to learn about all the countries, people, places, and history. My entire lifetime would be consumed with that quest of knowledge. If we look at the Earth from outer space, our planet is relatively small, just a tiny speck of dust that floats around in the universe. I suppose that the Dr. Seuss book, Horton Hears a Who, is not such a distorted, misrepresentation of people living on “specks.”

As I reflect on the different views of my world, from a personal standpoint and expanding out to the vastness of the universe, I see that my life and my world is a brief speck of dust, yet it is so important. I am learning that I only get a few chances to make a difference in my world. So, “What composes your world?” you may ask. Like I said earlier, my world is small, concise, and so important. I have my family and my home. I have my friends and my church. I have my faith in God. That’s about it. But, hey, those few items I choose to call mine, they are special to me, and they complete the picture in which I exist.

So, the next time I consider listening to that quote, “Stop the world I want to get off,” I hope I will reconsider and finish the ride.