Sharing My Heart

21
Aug
2014

 Status-of-the-blog

I have felt the desire to share with you all a few transitions that will be happening here on The Confident Mom blog.  As with anything in life there are times of transition.  I felt that leading last year when I shared how I would be using this space to help moms on a variety of areas close to my heart.  My bottom line goal here with this blog space is to:

1.  Glorify God in all that I do.

2.  Help moms by empowering them with practical ideas and strategies.

3.  Use my mistakes, successes and journey to inspire others to a place of hope.

4.  To be generous, authentic and transparent in what I share.

5.  Create a place where relationships can happen, because bottom line, this whole life is all about relationships.

6.  Share my battle with depression, my journey living with Lupus and the different seasons of motherhood experiences I have had.

Blogs can either stay just the same or change over time.  I could certainly look to keep things just as they have been for years, or desire to change when I feel like I am being led.  I am and have been in that space for quite some time, a feeling of change.  I know God has big things in store and has already shown me BIG things with what I’ve shared here on these pages and those I have touched.  :-)

Being true and authentic can be scary – it can be frightening revealing the times that I am human and make mistakes or yell at my little one 0r talk about my issues with pride.  But you all have been gracious and kind and I feel comforted knowing you are on the other side with an open heart. I  am encouraged all the more to share deeper.

I began this journey blogging as a method to coach other moms in parenting as well as managing their homes.  To be quite honest, I have felt very unsatisfied with coaching in the past year and felt God was leading me out of that season.  I have chosen to only take a few individual coaching slots and am doing no more personal coaching outside of those.  I am relieved and feel at peace knowing that something that was so exhausting for me can be put to rest for awhile.  I love helping, but truly feel the coaching I was doing was not helping as many as it could.

So what will be here on the blog?  What will be my focus for the next year or so?

I will be sharing what I am passionate about and what I feel God is leading me to talk about in an effort to Glorify Him in it all.

Compassion Child Sponsorship

We have three girls that we are sponsoring through the amazon affiliate commission that comes in from YOU, right here on the blog.  Yep, this is a passion of mine. I have been blessed with this space, so let’s do something to make a difference together.  Every little penny makes a difference in their lives, just remember to click on the banner graphic located on my bottom right side bar on the home page before you shop on amazon.

290x250TCM-sponsorchild1

Natural Living and Health

It is no secret that I am in love with Young Living essential oils – my life has been forever changed because I chose to step out of my comfort zone and try something completely new.  I was a skeptic and am not afraid to admit it, but oh, how I my eyes were opened.  

I cannot even begin to express how blessed I am with how I’ve learned to manage my chronic depression with prayer and the use of essential oils, as well as my Lupus symptoms that were very debilitating.  I plan to share more on what Lupus is, what I do to help myself keep going and how others might find help too.  Lupus is a fairly mysterious disease to so many, and I feel God is leading me to share my journey in hope of helping others.

I have so enjoyed learning together on my Private Facebook Page for my oily community and seeing so many other lives changed.  In addition, many moms who just began using the oils for their own personal use {ahem,… like me!} shared their story with friends and now have a little income coming it to bless their family.  I love supporting these moms and mentoring them, taking a passion of mine and using to HIS GLORY!

 Remember, it is all about relationships for me and my heart feels so full in so many ways with this new journey the Lord has me on helping others live better.

Online Book Studies

This all began last fall, after I came back from attending She Speaks, a writing and speaking conference.  I knew I was to lead online book studies, but not sure how to do it or what it looked like.  Well, we’ve done three so far and I am still learning!  I want to create a space to share and learn from each other.  I love the conversations on the Facebook pages and the relationships that develop.   I have made some incredible relationships all over the country with some amazing moms, and even in the world – which still amazes me!   I plan to facilitate three studies a year and see how it goes.

Healthy Eating

I have transitioned over the past two and a half years to a more ‘real’ food diet with less stuff I don’t need in my diet.  I am in no way a dietary pro or a chef.  But I will be sharing things that have helped me, short cuts and be sharing meals and recipes that my family enjoy.  Making motherhood a bit easier is a big deal to me and when I can share something that helps me – it’s all good!

My Personal Story

There are so many good things I am experiencing that I want to share with you.  I am so thrilled I could finally share my entire story of our foster care and adoption journey – God is amazing and I would never in a million years thought I would ever have an adopted little boy – but I do!  I also would have never guessed in a bajillion years that I would be mentoring and leading a group of fabulous ladies on their own journey of growth and passion by sharing Young Living.  I have an amazing team that I am being called to lead and I love the challenge.

God is amazing and each time I turn around there is another blessing just waiting.  I thought I gave up traveling when I left my 20 year career as a flight attendant, but this year alone I have been fortunate enough to travel to Hawaii, Salt Lake City, Spokane and in November – Ecuador all expenses paid because of my obedience in following His lead and stretching outside my comfort zone.  I want to share and include you all in it – God has amazing plans for you too, sometimes we just can’t even fathom it.

Resources for Moms

I love creating pin-pointed products that can help you in your everyday life.  The Weekly Household Planner is a huge hit and because of some of the other things I do here on the blog I can offer it for FREE and will continue to offer it for FREE in 2015!!  I love providing the Summer Survival Calendar and other ebook resources to help tackle struggles you face day in and day out.  I hope I can create more in the near future.

I also love sharing resources outside of what I make – more of items and systems that I use that I find very helpful. You will find that here as well and you can always know that I will never recommend something I do not use already.  Things like Stitch-Fix, Emeals and other things I think moms will find handy and not just a waste of money.  Remember I am frugal at heart and watch our money too!

Simplifying

So to be quite honest, all this takes a lot of time!!! I can be passionate and blessed, but I also have to know my limits – which can be really hard for this gal full of tenacity!  I am driven and stubborn, but I know that I must cut back in a few areas and learn to guard my time.  {Yeah, I wrote a bit about this on Monday!}  So with that being said, I am going to begin posting only two days a week here on the blog, unless I have something special going on that needs to be posted or we are in the midst of a book study.  

I also will be cutting back on social media positing, mainly Facebook.  To be honest, it is hard to say that, but I know that I need to be careful with my time and posting there to get a few “likes” just doesn’t seem to matter in the big picture.  God doesn’t really care about the likes or the statistics of my Facebook page – so just know I am still here, but just not focusing on being there as much as I once was.  I much prefer Pinterest and doing a few Instagram pictures here and there – so you can find me there as well.

I pray that you will continue to find refreshment here on the blog and ideas to help you everyday.  That is my desire and my heart and always welcome your suggestions too!  Feel free to contact me and share your heart.

It’s the Simple Things #simplethings

18
Aug
2014

 Simple-Things

I had really great intentions of writing a post for you all on “the Status of the Blog” – a post I have started to do yearly, giving an overview of what has transpired over the past year, where I feel led to go and how I can Glorify God in all of it.  Well, life got in the way when I was to sit down to write and it didn’t happen.

I woke up yesterday feeling very run down and out of sorts.  I am sure you know exactly what I mean.  Since I have Lupus, you never know if that kind of day is just a “fluke” and it will pass or if things have settled in for a bit.  I have been so fortunate to have controlled my symptoms very well with diet changes and using essential oils daily, but this summer I have been more careless about being outside during the day, in the sun – which is DANGER for those who have Lupus.  It is like poison, sucking the life out of you.

So, instead of my normal “just push through it” and write the post, which would have taken several hours of thinking, writing and editing…… I chose to instead STOP, and share the real with you all.

Today, I leave for a couple days to celebrate my 7th Anniversary with my wonderful husband.  I could have pushed myself yesterday instead of allowing myself some grace and time to heal my body.  What fun would I have with my husband if I was run down, I could at least try to rest, recover and be ready for the time away.

So, that is what I did.  

I went back to bed for a bit, took an awesome Detox bath with some Aroma Seiz, Rosemary and Lavender essential oils mixed with my favorite Epsom Salts, had a ‘real food’ lunch, watched some of the Little League World Series (which I love!!) and hung out with my family instead of locking myself in my office to write and tried to enjoy the Simple Things.  #simplethings

Do you ever feel The Lord needs to bring about some things in your life to get your attention?  Yeah, I am feeling a bit of that as I write this post.  I am so often headed straight ahead, full steam – that attention to the simple things just isn’t on my radar.

So over the next few weeks you might see me using this hashtag (#simplethings) on social media – exclaiming my intentional act of remembering to capture and appreciate the simple things.  As summer winds down, I want to enjoy the simple things – not always needing to see BIG things all the time.

Will you join me in appreciating the #simplethings – I would love to see what you come up with too!  I hope you’ll extend grace my direction, for once putting my needs ahead of many others.  :-)

Life-Giving Moms Give Life

12
Aug
2014

Life-Giving-Moms-Give-Life

As I reflect on the past Eleven weeks of reading, pondering, discussions and prayer, I am feeling like I learned a lot about myself, yet once again!  I hope you feel the same.

This struck me as I began reading this last chapter:

“Sue, we did the best we could.”

Isn’t that all that matters?  Truly, we all want to do our best, and given different seasons of our life or different experiences – we all start at a different point and can only do the best we can do with what we know.  What our parents knew or were told about raising kids is completely different for the most part than what our generation is being told…..but that was what they knew.

Here is my transparency and authenticity – some of you may know this about me, but some may not.  I made the choice many years ago to leave my marriage and get divorced.  I felt at the time it was my only choice and I have taken responsibility for this choice.  I was not a believer in Christ, did not understand the full commitment of marriage and have held guilt in my heart for years because I made the choice for my kids to live in a divorced home.

I could live in this guilt and heaviness, or move forward in the best way possible.  I chose that.  Shortly after becoming a single mom, I did give my life to Christ and was blessed to learn how to live my life according to His guidelines.  I made choices that were not the best, but at the time they seemed the best.  I did the best I could.

“Learning to be a Life-Giving Mom without regrets requires embracing the season you are in.  You have to let go of the past and live in the present as you lay hold of the future.  At each transition you will likely shed some tears as you realize that you can’t go back and re-live the past.  You must move forward, facing the imperfections of your present, hoping for the future.”

Oh how I wish someone could have whispered these words into my ears 15 years ago!  I have grown to understand and embrace this type of thinking, but I wish I would have been given the grace – to myself much earlier in life.  I can’t go back, and completely realize that, I can only move forward.  God is using my mistakes, my failures to help others – I see it now, but would never have thought that years ago.

It is true, what Sue says, that all go through trials in our life and it is ONLY through those trials that our character is being perfected.  I would not be who I am NOW, if it had not been for the trials of before.

There are days I struggle to let go of the past and not dwell on choices I’ve made – but regret will get me nowhere but down.  I honestly think this had something to do with my depression for years – that I constantly could not give myself a break – there was no grace left for me.  Simple, but profound.

I pray that this study revealed areas of your life where you can rejoice over as well as ask for His guidance every single day. I think for me – I loved the prayers that I could use specifically asking for help – each and every day.  This is where the power is – receiving HIS power in my day.  

Because you see…..I can’t do this all myself.  And when I begin to get cocky and think I can – I stumble and fall.  It is my wake-up call to reach out to Him.  To surrender and allow Him to guide me and fill me.

“Living in the present is being content with who you are.”

9 Traits of a Life-Giving Mom – Week Eleven

11
Aug
2014

Main-border-study

We begin week eleven of our journey reading Sue Detweiler’s book, 9 Traits of a Life Giving Mom: Replacing My Worst with God’s Best.   {Psst…. this is our final week!!}

I honestly get a little sad when we get to the end of a book study – we’ve gotten to know each other and bits of our story on the Facebook page and we all have had our own journey through the material.  Having an awakening (or not) on topics read.  This study has been great and I am so glad you joined me in the journey.

Week Eleven

Read  Chapter Eleven – Life-Giving Moms Give Life

I will be back tomorrow with a quick post on my thoughts about Chapter Eleven and will introduce some questions through out the week on the private Facebook page.   This will wrap up this study – so if you have time to catch up on the reading to close it out with us, please do! 

(you will need to click through to the main blog to view the videos)

Chapter Eleven Video

 

I will be back tomorrow with my thoughts as I read Chapter Eleven and I’ll see you on the Facebook page!

So Long Self-Indulgence – Hello Self-Control

5
Aug
2014

Self-Control

We all have our addictions…. or inability to reign in self-control.  It looks different for each of us, and sometimes very similar.  Where is your area of weakness?

I have a terrible habit, well actually a few – but I will share with you one here to be genuine and authentic.  I said yesterday that I really don’t struggle with food issues.  I would say that is correct, but it has not always been the case.  I went through periods in my life where food was very high on my list of needs and I didn’t always choose the best things to nourish my body with.

I was looking for a “good feeling” from the things I ate.  Thank goodness I have grown and can say that I can pass by the big piece of chocolate cake or stack of cookies – but it has been a BIG choice for me to do that and likely a strong WILL that the Lord placed in me.  Becoming Gluten Free/Paleo has helped tremendously in knowing what I can eat and what I shouldn’t eat.  For me, not only will eating something make my heart hurt and feel bad, carrying shame, but my gut will also hurt and I will be miserable.  So self-control had to come pretty darn quick for me.

But I still do crave salty foods and have often shared about my favorite salty snack of the time, whether it is Cheetos (which I no longer eat) or Doritos (yep, not in my pantry now either) or just crinkle cut potato chips (yep, I let that one in and it is my salty snack of choice).

“Self-Control is our opportunity to freely choose to make God the first love of our life.  Self-Control is our opportunity to deny ourselves and choose what our heart really craves – GOD.”

That quote really opened my eyes – it gives me new perspective with the one area that I do currently struggle with and that is time management.  Focusing on what truly matters in the big mix of life.  UGH!  I know I am not the only one.

I want to be the ONE for everyone, but the reality is that I just cannot.  I need to find self-control in my ability to shut down the computer, to walk away from my iPhone and disengage from Facebook.  Yep, the complete introvert has problems!!  Big ones!  To be a life-giving mom I need to be present and I need to have self-control.

I know I will likely face other areas of my life where I will need to lay down my self-indulgence and allow God to work in my heart.   I do think I overindulge in areas of my life and there likely are areas I am not completely area of, so I pray that God will open my eyes to other areas I may be struggling with that I am not aware.

Do you feel God is speaking to you in an area on this topic?

I loved these questions Sue poses:

  • What overindulgent habits are causing death, not life?
  • Who is my comforter?
  • What is my reward?
  • Who or what do I turn to in times of stress, anguish, or even delight?
  • What do you rely on more than you rely on God?
  • What do you turn to when your day is going really bad or really good?
  • Who is your secret lover?

This quote stuck with me, with regard to parenting:

“Our children have been over promised and overindulged day after day.”

This is a huge topic and I pray this is just the beginning to peeling back the layers for you.