Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Heal Your Diastasis Recti and Strengthen Your Core {+Mother's Day Sale!}

Photo of Kelly Dean before and after core rehab. Read Kelly's story at her website here.

For several years, I knew something wasn't right with my body. But it seemed like no one could help me, so I just decided it was something I would have to live with for the rest of my life.

At different points in my journey, I tried several different techniques and programs to help rebuild my core, but they weren't successful.  I feared surgery was my only option.

But then I found out about Kelly Dean and The Tummy Team! Kelly has been such a help and encouragement in my journey to rehabilitate my core. She knows what it's like to suffer with Diastasis Recti, since she dealt with it herself, and overcame it.

I also love that she encourages women to have a grace-filled and realistic view of their bodies:

"Don't conform to our culture's warped sense of beauty. We are not prepubescent girls. WE ARE WOMEN. We have earned these curves and imperfections. We have experience and wisdom and life in these bodies. The most beautiful physical attributes you can possess are, confidence (good posture), eye contact (connection) and an inviting smile (life). Embrace your journey." ~Kelly Dean

Taking Kelly's online program for core rehab was one of the best things I've ever done for my body. It gave me the education and tools I needed to understand and rehabilitate my core. 

I'm still working on completely closing my diastasis, but I've already made so much progress! I no longer feel hopeless about it. 

After I shared my progress with the Core Foundations Program on my blog, several ladies wrote me and told me they wished they could afford to do this program. I wish everyone suffering with a diastasis could do this!

That's why I'm so excited that Kelly is having a great Mother's Day Sale May 5-May 15th! Hopefully this might make it a bit more affordable. Here are the details of this sale:

30% off all Tummy Team online core rehab programs
15% off all Tummy Team abdominal splints
15% off all Fit2B On Your Skin products--this is the wonderful tummy creme I've been using and recommending! I love this stuff!

To take advantage of this sale, all you need to do is go to the website and shop--no promo codes are needed, as the sale prices are on the website!

Linking Up Here: The Modest Mom

This post contains my affiliate links. Thank you so much for your support!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Enjoy Today, Mama

Do you ever feel like you've given up a lot to become a mother? In the midst of sleepless nights, prayers, tears, and difficulties, it's easy to forget to be thankful. But, oh, motherhood is such a blessing. Children are eternal souls, and they are so precious! And the time flies so quickly.

Recently, I came across this quote for the second time, and it caused an ache in my heart for a minute when I read it:

"You will never have this day
 with your children again. 
Tomorrow, they'll be a little older 
than they were today. 
This day is a gift. Breathe and notice. 
Smell and touch them; study their faces
and little feet 
and pay attention. 
Relish the charms of the present. 
Enjoy today, mama. 
It will be over before you know it.
~Jen Hatmaker

As my oldest two are now in the teen years, I can vouch for the fact that it goes by so fast. Don't waste today with harsh words and ungratefulness. 

If you need encouragement, start a blessings journal and spend some time each day writing down things you are thankful for. Even the little things, like a hot shower or a cup of vanilla spice tea, or the laughter of children playing outside. Pretty soon, you'll begin to see how full your life is of blessings if you will just look for them. Gratitude makes such a difference in your outlook and the quality of your life.
Especially look for things about your children to be thankful for. And then tell them how much you love them!

What's in our heart will come out in words of praise and affirmation and blessing. When I am regularly writing down blessings, I find that it's much easier to be positive and encouraging towards my children.

I'm not saying there won't still be trials. Those will still be there.  But sometimes just having a thankful heart will help you get through the day.

Enjoy today, Mama!
Need some mothering encouragement? Find it in the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle, which ends today!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Why I'm Not Giving Up Even Though It Seems Hopeless

Sometimes it does seem hopeless. It seems like our financial situation will never improve. Like we will never make our goal of becoming debt-free, and we will never stop living from crisis to crisis. 

The past few weeks have held many unpleasant financial situations, including a malfunctioning septic system ($150), a $550 vehicle repair, a $700 roof repair, and many other things (unexpected bills) that I won't list here. It's too overwhelming.

Dave Ramsey has been a huge help to our finances, and we always turn to his advice when we're making plans for how to do things more successfully.

This morning I spent some time praying about changes we could make that might help. Is there anything else we could cut? Any extra expenditures that could be eliminated? Sometimes it's hard to find more ways to save, especially when we already cut our own hair, only have one vehicle, cook from scratch, shop at Aldi and discount grocery stores, have one old-fashioned cell phone that we share (a TracPhone), shop at thrift stores, don't have TV or cable services, etc.

But I'm sure there are many ways we still haven't investigated that would save money in the long run. 

This quote really encouraged me today:

"You're only stuck as long as you choose to remain stuck. Success = Trying. Not only what you've already tried, but also what you're going to try today."  ~Carl and Angi Schneider
Now matter how difficult or hopeless it may look to us, there is always hope. And as a Christian, I draw much of my hope from verses like this one:

"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." ~John 16:33

So, rather than wallowing in self-pity or giving up, I will continue to pray and trust in Him. I'll pray for creativity, guidance, and wisdom. And I'll be thankful for all that we do have, and for the way He takes care of us!

I remembered that I had an eBook on my computer that included budgeting forms, so I read the book and printed off the forms. I repurposed an old binder to file the pages in, and now I have a brand new budgeting binder to add to my collection of binders!
I had been trying to use some free software online to monitor our budget, but I'm more of a paper-and-pencil kind of girl. I like having things written down on paper for some reason, so I'm hoping this works better for me.
The eBook includes forms for your monthly budget:
Bill payment checklist:
Grocery expense tracking page:
 And then my favorite, the Debt Snowball Tracker page:
The eBook, Build a Budget That Works, was written by a wife and mama with an accounting degree. It's a quick read, but helpful for anyone new to budgeting. I really like the forms that are included at the end.

Another encouraging read this morning, was Carl and Angi Schneider's book called Hope: Thriving While Unemployed. We've dealt with unemployment (and underemployment), and this book has some great ideas for those going through this hardship.

Both of these eBooks are included in the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle, and I was surprised to find quite a few other money-saving books, such as Frugal Real Food Menu Plans, The Gluten Free Aldi Meal Plan, How to Save Money: A 21-Day Challenge to Save $500 Per Month, Grocery University eCourse, and more!

I've really been so happy with the helpful and encouraging resources in this bundle, and I feel like it's a great investment. In addition to the above resources and the amazing bonuses (I got my scarf and I love it, and I'm excitedly awaiting my free art prints to decorate my children's rooms!), these two eCourses really make this bundle a huge bargain (since they are normally priced at $95 and $99)!
But hurry if you want to take advantage of these offers, as they're only available for a few more days!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Natural Remedies for Illness

When someone isn't feeling well at our house, I love to use natural remedies to bring comfort and hopefully shorten the severity and duration of the illness. 

I have a small collection of books that I turn to for advice and help (several of them come from Bulk Herb Store). 
I also really enjoy using essential oils. I have a dear friend (a widow in our church) who is my "doTERRA Lady," and she has a wealth of knowledge to share. Several times I've asked her for advice, and she always has an idea for me to try.
I turn to this book frequently for essential oil information. It's pretty doTERRA specific, but the basic information works with other brands, too.
I'm not loyal to just one brand of oils, as I feel there are lots of good ones out there. I really love the Florihana essential oils. They're from France, they're organic, the quality is excellent, and the price is good.
I also have a whole arsenal of vitamins, herbs, and tinctures that I like to use when someone comes down with something. 
Many times I have wished that I had more knowledge of natural remedies to use when my children are sick. I've been casually studying natural remedies for about 13 years, but I sometimes still lack the confidence I would like to have.

That's why I'm really excited about taking this online course called A Parent's Guide to Natural Remedies. The course was created by a holistic nurse (who was previously a pediatric nurse), and a holistic health coach. 
This course will teach you everything you need to know to safely and confidently use natural remedies at home.

Benefits of the Course:
  • Know how to reduce your child's fever without using Tylenol.
  • Get rid of an eachache without antibiotics. 
  • Stop a cycle of never-ending diaper rash, cradle cap, or reflux by looking at the root cause.
  • Soothe your child's uncomfortable symptoms without synthetic medications.
  • Stop feeling like you are taking a wild guess at which remedy to use.
  • Avoid damaging your child's gut flora by using antibiotics which can cause recurring illness.
Naturally Help Your Little One With:
  • Fever
  • Common Cold
  • Cough and congestion
  • Winter health
  • Tummy bugs
  • Infant reflux
  • Earaches
  • Skin Rashes
  • Constipation
  • First Aid
  • Sleep Issues
  • and more...
Just what I've been looking for! I'm so thankful this course came my way just at the right time. This course normally costs $99, but you can get it for just $29.97 when you purchase the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle (which will only be available until Monday, April 27)!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

A Spring Garden Party {+ What I Wore}

On a beautiful spring day, a sweet friend planned a garden party in her apple orchard. After days of rain, we were afraid it might be canceled, but the day dawned sunny, clear, and perfect! 
Almost everyone dressed up, and it was fun to see so many little princesses! Our lovely hostess wore a gorgeous dress she found at a thrift store. I just kept admiring the beauty of it--as a little girl, this would have been my dream dress-up dress (actually, I'd still love to wear it)!
This was a cute set-up for a guessing game--guess how many candies are in the jar. Each girl/lady wrote her guess on a piece of paper and then pinned it up on the chalkboard. The closest guess won the jar of candy!
Our friends live in the country and have 500 acres (or somewhere around that number), so there were plenty of animals in attendance as well!
After enjoying the food and fellowship, we played games. This was musical chairs:
And then we used these farm-fresh eggs to play the game where you race to see who can keep their egg on the spoon and make it to the finish line first. 
After the party, each guest was given a packet of seeds as a party favor, with a thank-you note attached.
I chose these English Daisies:
Me and my girls in the apple orchard:
I planned on wearing something fun, like my white regency dress (the one I made for our wedding anniversary, years ago). But then I found this adorable hat, and it didn't quite match the dress. And I just had to wear the hat! I found it at the cute little coffee shop I took my daughter to when she got her driver's permit.

After buying the hat, I was amazed to find that I had a scarf that exactly matched the hat trim (which ties in a bow on the back)! I had thought of the scarf when I was considering the hat, but I didn't dream they would match so perfectly.
What I Wore:

Maxi Dress: ThredUp
Short-Sleeved Cardigan: Walmart
Layering Tee: DownEast brand (also @ Deborah & Co.)
Scarf: birthday gift from my mom a couple of years ago
Hat: local coffee/gift shop
Polka-Dot Flip-Flops: my girls bought them for me at a local department store

I love wearing scarves. They just add something special to any outfit! I was super-excited when I saw that one of the bonus offers for the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle was a free scarf!
I chose this coral one--I just love the color!
You can get a free scarf, too, when you order the homemaking bundle here!
I was so excited about the scarf, but what really has me excited is this eCourse that's included in the bundle:

It's called "A Parent's Guide to Natural Remedies," and if you were to purchase this by itself, it would cost $99! But it's included in the price of the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle, which is such a great deal! 

This course will give you the confidence to learn how to use natural remedies to treat your child's illnesses at home. You will learn how to use methods like homeopathy, cell salts, essential oils, probiotics, and more to treat things like fever, sore throat, ear infections, tummy bug, coughs, digestive issues, sleep issues, and first aid.

This kind of course is right up my alley, so I'm looking forward to getting into it! 

The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle full of great resources is only $29.97 (over a $1,000 value), and it's only available until Monday, April 27. You can learn more here, or you can buy it here.

Lilla Rose Mother's Day Sale!

And, oh, one last thing before I go--starting today, Lilla Rose is having a Mother's Day Sale! You can get up to 20% off on selected items, and 10% off on the May Flexi of the Month (which was released early)!
And, we have some new hairbands! The hairbands have been one of my favorite Lilla Rose items, but now they're even more wonderful! 

You can choose your color of band, and now the adjustable back strap is detachable and you can wear the hair band (the beaded part) as a necklace! You can also attach more than one beaded part to the adjustable back, which gives the hairband a layered effect, as seen in the photos above. These would make great Mother's Day gifts! Find them here.
And if you made it all the way to the end of this super-long post, thank you so much for reading! 

Also, I've included my referral links in this post, so if you order through any of them, I make a small percentage of the sale (at no extra cost to you!). Thank you so much for your support!

Possibly Sharing Here: Mom 2 MomThe Modest MomMama MomentsThe Art of Home-Making MondayTitus 2 TuesdayTitus 2sdaysCapture Your JourneyA Wise WomanRaising HomemakersSo Much At HomeA Little R & RHearts for HomeGraced SimplicityGrowing in Grace