Category Archives: Life

Just every day stuff, struggling through my exciting life.

I DID IT-with a little help from my friends!

People find this hard to believe, but I am afraid of a lot of things.  OK I looked up the definition just to make sure I am using the right word. Afraid: 1.filled with fear or apprehension 2. filled with regret or concern 3. feeling worry or concern or insecurity 4. having feelings of aversion or unwillingness.The only one that does NOT fit is number four. 

I remember reading a book Love is Letting Go of Fear by Gerald Jampolsky.

“There are only two emotions: one is Love and the other is fear. Love is our true reality. Fear is something our mind has made up, and is therefore unreal.”

Gerald G. Jampolsky, Love Is Letting Go of Fear

At first I found that ridiculous but as I thought about different things I did-I realized everything I did-I could tie to either love or fear.  I started to think about over people’s behavior as well-the boss that hovers, the perfectionists, and the procrastinators. It helped me to see people differently.  We have all run into people at work that seem grumpy and indifferent. Instead of being upset-I saw them differently.  Certainly that type of behavior was not love-so they must be afraid of something.  It really is a paradigm shift and I think it is easier to stop taking things personally and be compassionate because no one likes to be afraid.

“Fear and love can never be experienced at the same time. It is always our choice as to which of these emotions we want…”

Gerald G. Jampolsky

Oh yeah-that is so true and I have gotten in trouble many times, with people I love, for choosing fear. Once it was too gone to get back-I realized my actions were fear based.  I will make every effort from now on not to make decisions based on fear-when it comes to my relationships with people.

I am always afraid of trying something new. Like I have a new silhouette machine.  Yes-I have been busy but I admit I may be procrastinating trying it the first time because it is new. I procrastinate on projects thinking I can’t do it, or I need hours of time-only to find out when I finally jump in…that I can do it just fine.

Sometimes if it is something I really want to do, I will do it anyway. It could be taking a class in a new technique, going to a party where I do not know anyone, joining a new group, or greeting someone at church (yes, this is scary for me). I won’t sleep and I ‘ll be anxious, but I do it.

But there are some things I would never do alone.  I am pretty brave considering all the things I have made myself do over the years and all the hairy things I have survived but I doubt I will I know I will never be as brave as my friend Annette who traveled to Italy by herself! I know I will never jump out of a parachute like my friend Sharon.

Ok I did crochet the bracelet I thought I could not do. But when I did not understand the directions for the closure, it sat for months.  Finally I decided I would finish it MY way so that I could wear this bracelet I loved.

Something that has been on my list for a while is a 5K. Now I am not a runner, I am a walker.  I want to do the Disney one because I want that medal. But, this is one of those things I am NOT doing unless I have a buddy. Too far out of my comfort zone. I have asked friends here and there but never followed through-well…because I am afraid.

Then one day I am sitting with friend Jo Foringer and she said she has signed up for a 10K and that she will be walking. I was listening-I asked for details. I used to walk over three miles a day so I figured I could do this-I can walk.  Knowing I would be with her-a confidence buddy or whatever you want to say…I signed up.  I told myself I needed to get out walking again and wearing sneakers (hate them) to get ready.  I had months.  Well, life is busy and I probably only walked a few times,  I was not giving up though-because as rigid as I can be when I am afraid, I am just as rigid if I have told someone I am going to be there.

So Jo and her husband Dave would meet me at the race. I got there first and then was freaking that she was not coming. Of course they did. I had only slept three hours the night before because-I was afraid. I knew I could finish in three hours because I know my walking pace.  But what if I have to go to the bathroom  What if I get a cramp? What if I get overheated? OK so I planned ahead.  I have a fanny pack and I packed it for every disaster.

Two waters

Two kind bars

tissues (lack of such could be embarrassing)

Deep Blue roll on (for cramping-my friend had used it in a previous race)

Digestzen (a tummy issue would NOT be good-I used this three times!)

Peppermint Beadlets (to keep me alert, help me if I get stuffed up)

Motivate Essential Oil-enough said

Cell phone-got to document this moment

Our friend Tara was there and that was a great feeling to see her before we began and get a hug.  Jo also had some other friends there as well.

When we started out, Dave & Jo were pacing a little faster than I expected. Dave has long legs and Jo was moving.  They asked if they were going too fast and I said no because really-it did not feel bad to me.  As I timed how we were doing, I felt the pace was a good one.

The walk started off with pelting rain and wind.  I was soaked and hated water getting in my face.  We had a headwind for sure but I would rather have it the first half and not the second. Overall I kept just a bit behind Dave & Jo.  The turning point was exciting.  I had no cramping, was not exhausted, and as water was provided, had plenty of water on me still.  I was not overheated at all.

I was thrilled when we got to the end-I think in just over two hours.  Would have been perfect if I had not fell in the sand.  Just to my knees-not out of exhaustion or anything but walking up the hill in the soft sand was the hardest part! There was one woman that was carried across the line by her friends! I got my Octopus Medal and I was SO PROUD of myself. I was SO THANKFUL for the experience. I wondered, of course, what took me so long to do this. But we know the answer, fear.

There were many encouraging words along the way!

After getting up that hill-we grabbed some water and then went off to party a bit before I headed home. Yes I did drink that before 10am!

Dave & Jo-I cannot thank you enough.  Thanks Dave for being the leader, even if you had to walk backwards sometimes. Thanks for your great pacing-all the encouragement helped me to do something that has been on my list for years.  Actually-a 5K was on my list so this was even better.  Just a little help from friends makes a difference.

Dave & Jo have already signed up for a 5K. As soon as I see that the date is not a conflict with our convention, I plan to join them.

Here’s hoping anyone that reads this will take a step towards doing something they really want to do that they are a bit afraid of. And if I can help you I will!

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I’ll see you in my dreams…

I had my dream Friday night and wrote the post first thing Saturday morning.

What a dream I had last night-it was so real and entwined with real events of the day!  In the dream-I had two essential oil events scheduled-as I do today.  One was a one on one with Tricia.  The other was a rollerball class with Jessica in the afternoon.  In the dream I looked outside and saw TONS of people walking in my backyard.  There was a table there and they were sitting down. There were other people sitting in chairs. I saw some adults I recognized-Arminta, Teri, Holly, Ana, Sara, Annette, and Dawn.  Then I saw tons of young adults (20-30 years old) that I did not know.

I said to Marty-I must have messed up and posted a class today and not remembered.  Call Tricia and tell her I will get with her later.  So I went to the table (Teri was at the head facing me)  and asked them how many thought I always had my act together (I am accused of this all the time but those that do know me-know what an airhead I can be). They all raised their hands.  Then I laughed and said well this is a great example of how grandly I can mess up because  I don’t know why you are here! They laughed and Teri told me it was a teacher thing.  Something about my name being pulled at a school event.  All the people there were my grown students and some of their parents!  I walked around and could talk to many of the grown students I had in the past. They all looked great, were happy, thanked me and gave me hugs.  It was the most wonderful dream.

Whenever I have a dream that is so real-I wonder what triggered it. I retired December 2013 so it has been a while since I have taught. I was at a small business event the previous night.  I saw a former intern of Sandy Robinson’s there-Jennifer Blank.  She teaches at Royal Charter.  I saw two former students-sons of Lori Grodecky.  One is 18 and graduating this year-the other in 5th grade with straight As.  Former student Amy McPherson was at last night’s event with her mom.  She is in college-to be a teacher. I met a new friend at the event and when I told her I was a retired teacher-she asked if I missed it.  I told her I missed the students, working with parents and the teachers but that teaching was a grueling job.

Last week I saw Odean at Cinemaworld. It was the second time I saw him there and he always gives me a hug. I enjoy seeing Troy Parsons at Pollo Tropical. There is nothing more rewarding for a teacher than to see his/her students out in public being adults.  We all like to think we had something to do with their success.

It is so funny when I see a student, I sometimes cannot remember their name-but I remember them. When I tell them who I am they are amazed I remembered them.  I can always tell them a story-like how I called Troy’s sister Baby Bear after a school show she participated in. It is amazing how many of them tell me they were sorry they were a bad kid.  I tell them they were not a bad kid-they just sometimes made bad choices or had bad behavior.

Students do not realize how much teachers care.  Sure-we are on the back-working towards excellence all the time. Sounds corny-like a school mission statement-but it is TRUE.  I told a student once when he accused me of picking on him-that I cared about him too much to let him be a fool. That if I didn’t care-I would just let him keep going in that wrong direction.Many kids thanked me when they left Jupiter or when I saw them years later-for being tough on them and not letting them continue their bad behavior. I never felt that grades were everything when it came to teaching.  I cared about those kids as if they were mine.  I wanted them to be respectable people that could independently take care of themselves as they grew.  There are some students I still worry about and pray for. They pop in my mind all the time-I wonder where they are and if they are ok.

I do not know why but when I woke up I had to get this all down.  I am friends with some former students on Facebook that I was close to in school. To see them grown, working, raising children-is very exciting.  Teachers are unique people.  Teaching is one of the most difficult professions because we can never leave it at work-either we are bringing work home or we are bringing our student stories home-thinking about them, worrying about them, praying for them. Many teachers’ sanity and diligence is fed by the one note they may get a year from a parent or student-telling them they have made a difference.

This is not the first dream I have had about students.  I had them every year at the beginning of the school year and throughout the summer.  I may have been off work in the summer-but I was still working on projects and worrying about kids.

As tough as teaching is-we try to remember and focus on the good things and not on the things that break our heart-the kid moved out of state when he was just making progress, when you are told to stop your afternoon club unless you can prove it improves scores, and when the kids beg you not to leave in the middle of the school year. Like Marty said though-there will always be those kids, you will always have a reason not to leave. We agreed it was time.

If you are a parent-I hope this will help you see your children’s teachers a little different and maybe you will take a moment to think of your own. Know that the phone calls and notes you get about your child are because the teacher cares.  If they did not-they would just not bother. Keeping in touch with parents is a LOT of work.l  If you are a former student, know that myself and others at Jupiter-we always wanted great things for you.  And for my former students and others going into education..GOD BLESS YOU! If I can help in any way-I will.  We need new teachers that have a passion for the children like my peers did. I am in tears as I write this-because I do miss teaching and I do miss the kids. Last night’s dream was so real.  I wish I really could see so many of my students again. I have boxes of letters from them I will never throw away.  I am glad I am still somewhat local so I can run into them here and there.

I am sure the things I speak of here are not unique to me. Many teachers feel these things.

Thank you for listening to my rant and GOD BLESS THE TEACHERS!

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Just Do It-Vision Boards, Habits and Making a Plan..

The phrase “Just Do It” is famous.  It is supposed to inspire us to get over all obstacles and get it done.  Easy words to say-not so easy to put into practice.

I am a person of many interests and activities (those that know me will agree). To some, I have a lot of adventures and get a lot done.  I do, but for me I am consistently frustrated with doing the things that I should do.  Not the should dos like housework-the should dos that I WANT to do and are good for me but I am not consistent.

At the beginning of the year I took a great Vision Board Class at Decide Differently I had to choose one word for the year.  I chose Deliberate.  I chose that word because I wanted to be deliberate on how I chose to spend my time/money/resources.  I did not want time to get away from me-wasted in front of the television or rescuing pets on Facebook. I wanted to be mindful of financial resources-using the library first instead of just buying the book. Tithe on a regular basis (God has blessed me with so much), and to think about my resources.  If I have things I do not need/use-give them to someone who does need them or can use them.


I realized at vision board class that things will not get done unless there is a plan to get it done. Thank you Shakti Sutriasa for such a great class. At the bottom of my board I have dream it-plan it-do it. That made sense to me.  I can say I want to walk weekly-but what’s the plan? I also realized that if I wanted to make more time for something, I had to take time from something else.  So I made a more-less chart. It made so much sense. This list has helped me to see my time as something I CAN manipulate to some degree.  Below are some things I struggled with and the plan I used to resolve it.


Writing: I love writing but was not getting it done. My excuse-my journal was too big and I never had it with me. So I switched to a Moleskin.  Now it is with me all the time.   I use it to write the plan for the day (rather than on scraps of paper) and as a diary. I saw a video called The Bullet Journal. While I have not adapted everything, some parts have been very useful to me-like the index. I now carry my journal everywhere and a lot is getting written-all because of a plan. The moleskin for Jan/Feb of this year has more than my whole journal last year. After I filled the moleskin I bought s set of three pretty little notebooks and am using them now. Thanks Mychele for telling me about the Bullet Journal Video!

moleskin    index  notebook

Supplements: I love my doTERRA supplements.  When I take them, I have more energy, my body systems are more efficient and I eat less (Slim & Sassy). I KNOW this, yet days would go by when I was not taking them.  I would put them in a little carrier to take on my days out (to take at lunch) and then I would not do it. A couple days in I would wonder why I was dragging, all clogged up, and eating junk food.  My husband is  amazing taking them-morning, lunch, dinner, bedtime. My friend Sandie Bowen finally told me her trick.  She never packs them to take out for the day-she puts them in a bowl on the counter.  Then they are there every time she walks by.  If she doesn’t see it and act-her husband reminds her.  This has helped a lot-a pretty bowl by my coffee maker. Thanks to Sandie & Marty for helping me get a plan in place.

Art/Creativity: I was not getting anything artistic/creative done.  It made me sad-especially since I had a room filled with paint, beads, paper, and cloth. I would see my friend Mychele (who has two young children) getting all artsy and I wanted to be there! This is very much who I am and not to do it is like slow death. Every day I would intend too.  Then I would start reading email, catch up on Facebook, start some wash, do some business and before I knew it-time to make dinner. This went on for months.  Then after talking to my friend Mychele (I was talking out loud-she was listening) I came up with a motto-Mornings are Mine. I was always going to do those other things…so put my things first.  This simple thing was LIFE CHANGING! I found when I spent the morning writing, sewing, painting etc..that when it came time for the other things-I was a JOYFUL person.  Not only joyful but I seemed to be in super speed. I was not dragging through-I was efficient and I was getting things done for myself and for the family/business. I told Marty and as always, he was okay with my choice.  I didn’t realize how much until we both visited Sandie.  I said to her, “I don’t think Marty gets the ‘mornings are mine’ concept but it really has changed everything for me! Marty’s response, “Oh no honey, I get it.  I WANT you to do your art first”. Thankful for a supportive husband and artsy sister Mychele. Mychele inspires me by posting what she is up hopefully I do the same for her!

Walking: They say the simplest exercise is walking.  When I retired, Marty wanted me to make a goal for myself to walk three miles a day.  My friends though he was mean.  I knew he was caring-he knew I loved being outside, he knew I wanted to be healthy, he knew I wanted to stretch myself.  A month into retirement, I was still not walking.  Then I met my neighbor Cindy. I told her I recently retired and asked her if she was the one I saw walking all the time.  I told her I need a plan to get walking.  Her response, “I walk three miles a day.  Want to walk with me?. Just one of God’s little blessings.  Having someone to be accountable to really helps. So thankful for Cindy and what she has brought to my life.

Time Slipping: Did you ever go on the computer-intending to spend 15 minutes there and suddenly an hour hour passed? No…never! A timer is my new best friend. I will set the timer to spend so much time in an area and then move to the next.  I also think backwards.  If I have to leave the house at one, then I shower at noon, pack the to go bag 11:30, stop what I am doing at 11…etc.  This really helped.  I would often work on something till the last minute and then rush out of the house without the things I needed. Sound too regimented? You make think so-until you have that day when you cry out of joy for feeling successful!

Television: Yes I like television and I have favorite shows.  I do tape them, have not seen a commercial in forever.  Also I use television as my down time.  I have the computer set to go off at ten. Then I try and make myself sit on the couch.  I put on some serenity oil to calm me down and move towards sleep.  One thing I love though is where my desk/television are.  My desk is behind the couch where my husband sits to watch television.  I have a direct view.  Why is this important? I can sit at my desk, answer emails, write notes, or complete a project and watch a show at the same time.  I know, we are supposed to live in the moment but I am not willing to give up television completely nor am I willing to spend hours watching it while doing nothing. My next project is to set up a little writing box near my seat on the couch-so I can easily write notes during my TV time.  Real notes..instead of email. It’s a plan.

Out and About-It is amazing how a trip to the library can eat hours of my day and cost me money.  I have to get dressed etc, to go there.  More than likely I will stop somewhere else. Then I’ll get hungry and grab lunch. Next-go home and put everything away. By then-I am shot and find it difficult to be productive.  I now stack my days.  I choose days to not leave the house.  On the days I do leave, I pack several appointments/errands into the day. WOW-this was a game changer.  Sure I ‘m exhausted when I get home-but I would have been anyway.  This Wednesday I’ll make Thirty-One deliveries, meet two friends at different times at Barnes & Noble.  Thursday I will go to a class, see a friend and her new baby, meet another friend at dinner. In between I will pick up dog food and do other errands!.  This plan works and has given me more time!

Resources: Besides your friends and family, there are books and other resources that can help you.  I already mentioned The Bullet Journal.  I must now mention Gretchen Rubin. She is one of my favorite authors.  I have preordered every book she has written.  I own every book she has written in hardcopy and on audible (so I can listen again and again).  After I started writing this months ago, I received my preordered book Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives. I ordered it not knowing much about it.  Come to find out-it’s about habits.  I LOVE this book and truly need to blog a review about it. This book reinforced thoughts I was already having.  It also gives a lot of great ideas on developing and or/breaking habits.  As I write this, I think I will plug it in again for a listen while I work in the kitchen. To me, a lot of what we struggle for to “Just do it” has to do with either making or breaking a habit.  I think you will find this book a great resource.

I could go on and on.  I do want to note a recurring theme.  I did not develop all these plans on my own.  It started with the vision board, then different people/things (Sandie, Marty, Mychele, Cindy, Bullet Journal, Gretchen Rubin) that really helped me. Being vulnerable about what you struggle with will often get you the support you need. The funny thing is-if you tell me your struggles…I can probably come up with a plan for you.  If I tell you mine, you can probably help me.  Don’t be afraid to reach out.

I will still struggle at times and get off course.  I know one thing though, using Gretchen Rubin’s Words….I am Better Than Before!

Your turn:

What struggles have you solved with a plan? Please share-it may help someone else.

What do you still struggle with? Someone may be able to help you!

God Bless you all in your endeavors.  I would love to help if I can! Feeling powerful makes me want to help others feel the same way.

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Liberate Your Art Postcard Swap


In this new life I have created since I retired form education, I have gotten involved in many artsy adventures.  I take many classes at Art More Place here in town.  I also participate in Lifebook and The Documented Life Project.  I have done many art card swaps through Facebook.

One of my most recent adventures was participating in the Liberate Your Art Postcard Swap.  To participate you create postcards of your art and then swap with people around the world.  First I had to think-what is “my art”?  Well…the host of the swap assured us it could be a photograph we took or a photograph of something we created.  You could also create postcards by painting them.

I decided to use some photographs of favorite pieces I had created and use photographs I loved.  I figured while I was ordering postcards I’d order a few extra.

I created a pinterest board to make it easy to remember this swap.

This was very exciting for me-postcards, with my stuff on them!  I’d been saying lately how I would like to get back to sending real mail instead of all this internet stuff-now I could!

Choosing my postcards and mailing them to the organizer was exciting enough.  It gets more exciting when you start getting postcards from all over the world.  Then I had several people on the Liberate Your Art site do side swaps with me as well.  Not only did I get beautiful postcards, learn to liberate my art, but I got to share stamps with a young stamp collector-I got her one from the United Kingdom and one from Australia.

Sadly, it appears this swap is only once a year. This little adventure has changed how I see my art and has given me ideas!  I have beautiful shots of the beach and my grandson and other nature shots-now I can do something within them instead of them sitting on my computer. I am about to order more postcards of my work and maybe I will start my own swap or see if others would like to continue.  I must say of all the things I have done, this was one of the least intensive yet greatly rewarding.  Can’t wait to do it again! The painting at the beginning of this post is a new one I made at Art More Place and will be included in my next swap!

Thank you Kat for helping me liberate my art!

Your turn! Think of something you have created (could be a photo)-it could be a cake, something you grew, something you created.  Post a picture of it in comments (copy/paste should work).  Also, entertain the thought of making postcards of pictures/things you love!

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What’s New & Good?

What’s New & Good?

I never heard this phrase until I was in my Health Coaching class last year (more about that later).  We would meet monthly and after Kat greeted us, each person had to share what is new and good.  I like this so much-I would like to practice greeting my friends this way. So often we talk a lot and do not listen.  If we care about our friends-then knowing what is new and good is important.  I think it also allows the person you are asking to look for the good things in their life! I have seen a lot of sad things this month.Thinking about what is new and good helps me to remember that despite sadness, there are still many blessings.

Ok so I am hoping you will play with me on this. I’ll go first…

What’s New? 

Dec 2014 I graduated from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition-

I am now a certified health coach! I completed The Science & Art of Herbalism through Rosemary Gladstar in 2003 and immediately started created herbal products to help family/friends.  Then I got involved in essential oils and I was able to replace prescriptions (for allergies & diabetes) with essential oils. Marty thought the nutrition course would round things out.  I have always been interested in natural health and this made perfect sense. My year at IIN (the course is done online) is one of the most exciting things I have done and it has greatly impacted how we eat. I now am integrating the knowledge from all three of these endeavors to live our best life and help others do the same!

In December 2013 I decided to leave education after 20 years.

I cried.  I loved my job, my students, and the people I worked with.  I felt guilty-like I was deserting them. My husband encouraged me to leave because I could not stop myself from working harder and harder and he was concerned.  We were also working with essential oils at this point and he kept teasing me-“wouldn’t it be less stressful to stay home and visit and help people?” I realized a month after leaving just how stressed I was.  I love what I do now-I love helping people find new choices.  Having been powerless in my life-it is wonderful to help others feel empowered.

I have a new great nephew!

My niece Jennifer gave birth on March 3rd.  Her and her husband have built a wonderful life for themselves and I am excited for this new chapter in their life!

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 3.20.14 PM

Hello my name is Debra and I hope I am improving…

My friend Mychele and I threw this phrase back and forth one day while we admitted our weaknesses. One of mine was: My name is Debra and I am addicted to signing up for art classes.  I think Mychele said “My name is Mychele and I am addicted to art supplies”.  Through all the fun tho I realize I like this phrase. We are new everyday.  So what else is new? New goals, new blog, new friends, new adventures, new ways of eating, new behaviors…too many to mention.  What I do know though is that are no new year resolutions.  I just want to move in the direction of improving…

What’s Good

I have rediscovered my creative self. 

Those that know me know I have been doing different artistic/crafty things for years.  I have a room (Zander calls it the Glitter room) filled with great supplies I was not using.  I am glad to say I have found my artsy self again.  I found a great place to encourage me at Art More Place.  We have needed  a place like this in this area for years.  Sherri does a great job at finding talented people willing to share their knowledge and bringing them to Art More Place so we can play!  I have done mosaics, acrylic on canvas, jewelry (with soldering), creative photography, sewing, mixed media, and more. I love that I can go there and go home with a project and never invest in the materials to do it again if I do not want to.  I know when I create I am happy and I am so glad to be back in the mindset of finding joy through art and creativity.

Our Grandson is Amazing!!!


OK our kids are too.  They are all doing well and that is all a parent can ask for.  My daughter says I was a good mom but honestly I was younger then and it seems a blur.  Now I am much more grown up and having a grandchild and doing things with him is wonderful.  Zander has none of my blood in his bloodline but we are alike.  We are both a little crazy, we both love paint and glitter, we love the beach, cooking, growing things, and making things for people.  Zander is very artistic and creative.  He told me next time he comes he wants to sew. Zander was born prematurely and we are thankful that he is doing so great as you just never know.  He lives with his wonderful mom and grandma (I am Mimi) in Orlando and he is in first grade. Our adventures are just beginning.

My nephew is getting married!


Weddings are always exciting and his future bride is beyond beautiful inside and out! I am so excited to make jewelry for this special occasion!

I am busy-but I have time-

I have always been sad when I was working and felt I needed to be somewhere else-with a sick friend/family member, helping someone in crisis.  Life goes so fast.  Mind you I am busy but there is some flexibility with this new life.  I have been able to visit my friend Mychele more often, help others with projects, and get involved a bit more.

I sleep…

Yes this is good.  For years I would go to bed  after midnight and then be up at 5:15 to go to work. I have seen statistics about not sleeping and they are VERY scary. Even if I went to bed, I could not sleep.  When I got involved with doTERRA, my husband came up with an essential oil blend that took care of that and I slept like a baby. I still have to GO to bed though.  Happy to say that now I am usually in bed by 11:00PM and the alarm goes off at 7:00 to meet my partners for a walk.

I didn’t cry today-I lost a loved one this month-a cousin near and dear to my heart. Someone I wish I could have seen and learned from every day but she lived in Pensacola. I have seen friends lose loved ones recently, and friends have lost pets near and dear to their heart. I am a crier but today is the first day I have not since the end of February. I will just be thankful for that.

So now it is your turn.  What’s new and good?

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Back to school-Keep it Healthy

Originally published on blogger in August 2014

It’s back to school for everyone next week in Florida.  Along with adjusting to new schedules-everyone is at risk sharing germs with people they come into contact with. Getting sick is a big concern for teachers. I always preferred teaching lessons myself if at all possible.  I never knew who I would get for a sub. Sub plans took hours to write even though I had a template and then subs would tell me-they did not like the book or lesson so did something different.

Students getting ill is also a concern for parents and teachers.  Being a parent is hard already.  If a parent works outside the home they’re in a constant struggle trying to figure out if the child is well enough to go to school or if they need to stay home from work with them. Sometimes helping getting a child well is not too difficult but then they often get sick again due to exposure.
My last two years in school I believe I was healthier than normal because of my doTERRA. Yes I take the supplements and use lemon in my water daily and follow other keeping healthy habits but when I think of germs and defense I think specifically of On Guard Products. I wanted to prevent getting sick rather than having to deal with it at what always seemed the worst timing. I used the hand soap to wash my hands, used On Guard oil in my diffuser at home every night, and took the On Guard Beadlets or On Guard + Softgels. I also had a small plug in diffuser in my office.  As people came in my area-they would say “It smells good in here”.  I felt empowered knowing I had products I could use to keep me healthy.
doTERRA parents use diluted OnGuard in a roller bottle and have children put the blend on their feet as they go off to school and go to bed.  Children like applying it themselves.  What a great defense against germs!
As a doTERRA member I get all of these products wholesale and I can also earn points to get free products. I do not sell oils, rather I like to help educate people about their empowering properties and help them get the products wholesale if they are interested. I would be glad to give you some samples and see how these products can help you!
 April 16, 2015
Your Turn: What doTERRA products are your favorite for supporting good health! Reply below and be specific because other people may want to try your solution! I will be looking for replies and giving out a freebie first week in May!
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Universal-His Way

Originally posted on blogger 6/12/12

Today I picked up Zander from daycare and we went to Universal.  I knew we could only stay a short while because we had to get back to town for dinner and Vacation Bible School.  As an adult, when I go to a theme park I am always thinking about how I can get the most done in the short amount of time that I have. When Marty and I go we do the same, we do the most popular rides first, then gravitate towards the others and try to cram in as much as we can.

Well that is the adult way or at least my way- but Zander, as a kid, has a lot more on his mind when going to Universal. He’s almost four now and has his own ideas about what is fun!

First-the escalators and people movers.  Zander loves them.  Getting on and off is very exciting.  Then when you’re on it he just loves standing in one spot and enjoying the ride. I suggested on the people mover that we walk to go faster but no-he liked putting his arms out to keep me in one place better.

Next great thing to escalators and people movers- stone walls and metal railings.  They are great fun. He climbs on them, walks along them, and studies where they are connected.  One line was about twenty minutes long and the other two about thirty but he did not complain about the lines-he was too busy exploring.

Zander also loves music.  Most places in Seuss Landing have very catchy music.  He is always swaying or bopping to it.  Sometimes I do not even hear the music until I see him in time with it-then I hear it.

Zander is also good about recognizing distance.  He loves to say, ‘look how high we are’ or ‘we are going to go way up there’.  He will say many times, ‘we are getting so close’ even though we have only moved a foot.

He also believes in taking breaks.  I learned this walking to the car when he told me, ‘Mimi-I need a break’. So we did- an ice cream break.  He also picked a couple spots for photo shots.  He stopped and said ‘take a picture of me’-of course I obliged.

When it was time to go, we had a long walk to the car.  So we took turns.  I carried him a bit, and then he walked.  We were both exhausted and happy to see that people mover again.  This time I did not even suggest we walk- I just enjoyed the ride. We got to the car, got some fresh water and within five minutes, he was asleep. I had told Zander on the way to the car that I thought he and I should sleep on the way back home and let Thomas (stuffed cat in the car) drive.  He said no-he wanted me to.  Oh well.

I learned a lot letting him control the day a bit.  I thought cramming a lot in was the way to give him the best time-he had other ideas and his way was a lot more relaxing.



April 16, 2015

Your Turn: What are your favorite activities with your children/grandchildren?

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Why write?

Originally published on blogger 6/9/12

I was reading a new book on my kindle today.   One of my favorite bloggers did a compilation of her blogs.  Her book, Willa’s Journal: A Box of Stars is delightful because it is really makes you think about everyday ordinary things. In one of her posts, she says she writes-because she can-realizing that other people may or may not be interested in what she has to say. I always was.

This made me wonder why I write. Actually, there are so many reasons I may not get them all down.

I started keeping a journal before I was a teenager and still keep one today.  I am constantly jotting or recording stories I want to get done.  I have several tiny notebooks with notes, scraps of sentences, and many journals. My writings are mostly about my life and other amazing things.  I am a thinker and spend a lot of time thinking in my head about why things happened a certain way and how I could do it differently.  I also am amazed at the not so accidental timing and connections of things that happen in my life.  I learn from everything-good or bad and I am amazed at how intricate people and life are and how it all works together.  There’s a lot going on in my head….who knew? I think these words are what keep me up at night.

I write to…

Dump: Life is hard and painful and most of the time people don’t have time for your hurts because they are nursing their own.  I can dump every ugly piece and get it off my mind. I will not be judged or have to worry about my secret getting out.  Many times I have written things on paper that are-well; they are just too painful to say.  I will never be able to say them but at least I can write them.  I am entitled to my feelings and they need a voice.

Tell Someone Off: I have never done this in real life, only on paper.  It is not in my nature but some people need it! I do not like conflict but again, I am entitled to my feelings. Let’s face it-most of the time when you tell someone something they are not likely to listen.  It is not worth stirring things up.  Megan and I have been talking about things like this a lot lately.  It is hard to find a balance between having respect for yourself and just walking away from it.

Try and understand: Often by mulling over something that has happened and how I feel about it puts everything in place. I get a clearer sense of it. In the midst of events we often can only see what is right in front of us.

To Remember: There are so many stories from my life I do not want to forget.  There are people I don’t want to forget. I can see how people have been placed in my life at a specific time for a specific reason.  I consider many things that have happened in my life to be near miracles-there is no reason why it should have miraculously worked out as it did. I do not want to forget the wonder of it all. I tell my students-you and your life are important. Write it down.

To be amazed and thankful: Have you ever listed the things you yearn for the most? Have you ever written your prayers?  I have.  Then years later I am looking at old writings and I amazed at the prayers that have been answered and the absolute perfect timing.  Looking back it becomes so clear as to why things had to play out the way they did-pain and all.

To remember to pray: I care about people and so many people are hurting.  I am also very busy.  I like to write the names of people that have asked for prayer.  I keep it on my desk near my computer.  Usually in email or on Facebook people will ask for help.  I say I will pray and I need to write it so I will.  This also allows me to check back and see how people are doing.

To Heal: I tell anyone that will listen-writing saved my life more than once.  It helped me process things that I had stuffed.  It helped me dig out of things I was buried under and as much of a cliché as it is-I found myself and pulled myself out-one page at a time. Consider this-some of the most famous songs and poems were written when dealing with pain.

Last but not least, I write because practice makes perfect. Well, not really. For me writing is an extension of me and my mind as well as my emotions. As none of those are perfect, my writing is not either.  However, when I write consistently, my voice is truer.  I become braver and less critical. My vocabulary improves, becomes more embellished, and flows easily.

I wrote a book (the one that saved my life) and it is not yet published.  My dear friend/editor Robin asked me how I would feel if I did all the work of compiling it and then it never got published.  I told her I was ok with that because this was a huge part of my life and I liked having it put together.  Maybe one day I can share it with my daughter.


April 16, 2014

Your turn: Do you write? Why? Why not? What do you write in? When do you write and what do you write in?

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Originally posted on blogger 6/8/12

Who doesn’t struggle with time management?  My friends always act like I am superwoman because I get so many things done. Obviously, I only share what I do get done-not what I don’t.  They don’t know how many times I start one project switch to another and another.  I plan to go to the computer for one minute and end up spending thirty.   I’m very organized-that’s not the issue. I have so many interests and so many things I love doing it’s hard to find time to do them all.  I’m never late for work, I always meet my deadlines or appointments but the things I want to do always come last.

I have to pull out all the stops in the summer to stay on track because I have a hard time staying on track with large open blocks of time-just my luck. There are a few tricks I do use that help me.  Maybe they’ll help someone and I hope others will share some of their tricks.

Working Backwards: This sounds strange but I came up with this because of work.  After students went home – I’d settle in to do my paperwork and such knowing that I have to leave at a particular time.  Then I would get so involved in what I was doing, totally immersed, all of a sudden I am grabbing my purse and keys and running out the door. Then I find out I’ve left without my shopping list, my journal, or the project I had planned to take home. So I started working backwards. As soon as students leave, I put everything that is going home in one area.  Then when I am ready to go, I have everything. I do this on my big errand days in the summer as well.  I put all my lists, coupons, cooler, and other items together first-with a plan of attack, before I start doing anything else. Working backwards has saved me so many times because I am constantly trying to do just one more thing!

Outlook Calendar: I use Outlook email and calendar at work and home.  I put as much as I can on there. When I add a doctor appointment, I put it on my work calendar (if within the school year), my home calendar, and my husband’s work calendar. I do the same for husband’s appointments. This way if one doesn’t look at their calendar, we can remind the other.  We know what the other is doing on a given day in case we need to schedule something. I also sync this to my iPhone.

Yahoo Groups:  Years ago I set up a yahoo groups for coffee club- my girlfriend group.  I set it up because we were always planning activities together. When I sat down to e-mail everybody, I had to make sure I didn’t forget someone.  I love the group because when I send an e-mail out saying I want to go see a movie -everybody sees it.  When someone responds with the time they can meet, everybody sees it.  Everybody knows what’s going on.  There is also a calendar included. I can put birthday and other reminders on there for everyone.

I also have yahoo groups for my book club group. There are only seven of us and we rarely e-mail each other within the group (totally opposite of coffee club). The calendar feature for us is invaluable. We often choose our books six months in advance. I take that information home and put it all on the calendar. I can include the book title, the hostess, and hostess contact info. I set it up to remind people two weeks ahead of time and three days ahead of time. I can set up six months of info in just a few minutes and never have to think about it again. This has made my life easier. No more worries about forgetting to send a reminder.

Dragon Dictation: This is a free app on the iPhone. Right now I’m sitting in the parking lot waiting for my husband and I am speaking into my phone using the app ( I  just had to close the window so a passerby didn’t think I was crazy). When I’m done I can e-mail it, send it as a text, post to FB, or twitter. You can also copy the text and paste into any application. I most always email it to myself at home. I put Dragon Dictation e-mails in one folder until I need them. This is a great app for me as I don’t write longhand because I’ve had carpal tunnel surgery.  After a few sentences my handwriting is messy and my hand cramps. Even if I am sitting at home with other options, this is my best way to get a lot of writing down.  Once on the way to school, I composed an email to teachers and sent it to myself.  When I got to work, I pulled it up, did very little editing and sent it out.  What a timesaver! The only downfall to the app is that it does not save your information. It only records for a short time.  This blog was done in twelve sections.  I just numbered each one as I sent it. Note: Sending an email while driving is as bad as texting.  Obviously, I only do this if I am sitting in traffic.

Pampered Chef Timer: I know there are other timers out there but I like this one best. I can clip it on to go with me. If I set it for thirty minutes and it beeps-I press stop. The thirty is still there for me to press start again. I use this at home as I’m constantly getting off track-especially in the summer or when I have a huge block of time to manipulate. For all the people that say I’m amazing- if you spent one day with me I could burst your bubble quickly.  I am fragmented as I go from one thing to the other. At the end of the day, a lot of great things get done but I often feel like I’ve failed because they weren’t the things I had planned on. I may get ten things started but none of them got finished. I use the timer a couple ways.

  1. To keep from being overwhelmed: I have always found that I put things off because I think I can’t do it or it will take too long or because I don’t know where to start.  When I came home from vacation I dumped everything on the dining room table-brochures, maps, my  activity totes. Every time I saw the pile I put it off but it bothered me.  I set the timer for 30 minutes and it was done! Sometimes a daunting task is completely finished because I’m trying to beat the clock. If it’s not completely finished it is a lot less intimidating. This is a great thingsto do with kids when cleaning their room or dividing the day into work and fun.
  1. To Stay On Task: In one day, as all women know, there are too many tasks. You could spend all day on the computer doing different things and they would all be important but there are other things that need to be done. I set the timer and switch tasks: cleaning a room, answering email, cooking, doing work for my business.
  1. To have Fun: I am a workaholic in many ways. I love organizing , cleaning, and purging.  It may take me a while to get to it but when I do I am relentless and I get so involved I do not stop. I actually schedule fun time to break away.  I may take the dog for a walk, play on the computer or read (other than walking the dog I have done nothing else yet).
  1. To eat: I admit I set the timer today so I would eat breakfast and after that set it for lunch. I get so immersed in what I am doing I could go from 6am to 5pm on nothing but a cup of coffee.  This is not good for me.  I should be having small meals and drinking water all day.

Monday I was home all day and I did not use the timer.  I spent all day on the computer-no games.  I was cleaning emails, cleaning files, doing work related to many jobs that I do-all important things but there was so much more that needed done. I knew I worked hard all day but it did not look like it and in many ways I felt like I failed. Thursday I was home all day and did use the timer and accomplished more than I thought I could. I was excited and felt like I had accomplished something and it looked like I had as well.

NOTE: I believe I first heard about using a timer through Flylady.

These tricks that work for me.  I’d love to hear your comments and any tricks that you use.

Another thing I have always wanted to do is to schedule a block of time for myself that I would use differently every day-Monday writing, Tuesday beading, etc. But I have not gotten that far yet. Has anyone done this?

April 16, 2015

Your Turn: What are the favorite things you use to help with time management? Please share-as I know many struggle with this!


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I want a wife…

Originally posted on Blogger 6/4/12

My husband and I watch a lot of shows that some people may find surprising: one of them is Sister Wives. Thankfully, husband admits that one wife is enough-he doesn’t need another.  Personally, however, I would LOVE a wife-for ME!

Don’t get any funny ideas- that doesn’t mean that I know longer want a husband, it just means I want a wife like me. I want someone else to worry about all these things once in a while so I can just be me.

Every day my head is swimming with all the things I have to do and all the things I want to do.  As with most cases, the things I want to do come last. I get up every day and there is wash to be done. I have to keep track of groceries so I have things to cook and pack for lunch. A quick stop at the grocery is never quick.  By the time I finish that and stop for gas and get home-it is late.  Then when I put the groceries away I have to clean the fridge a bit and organize the pantry it gets later.  Cook dinner and clean up and start thinking of the next day. By now, I just want to sit down.

This is why  I don’t get in my bead room as often as I like or write as often as I like.  I am a very organized person-that is not the issue.  I have many interests and things I like to do-oh okay-that COULD be part of the issue. I find life exciting and I want it all!!!

If someone else took on my wife brain for a day though, the things I could CREATE!!!

With summer here I am going to try and see if I can create full days with no duties so that I can spend time doing what I like to do.

Surely some time management and scheduling is needed.  I have actually come up with a few tricks that work for me. But that is another post.

In the meantime, I need to get to work!

Disclaimer: I love my husband and I love being his wife.  All my wifely duties are mainly self-imposed (being an over achiever is not fun). Being a wife is a full time job and I could easily be a stay at home wife and I would NEVER be bored.  Meanwhile, if you know a wife I could hire for a few days let me know.


April 16, 2015

Your turn: If you could have a wife, what would she do?

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