I used to make beautiful meals… before I learned the fine art of the chicken nugget. With a toddler and a baby brother, and a belly full of another, I stopped reading Bon Appetite Magazine. And the china took up semi-permanent residency in the closet down the hall.
The perennials along the border by the front door died, and with them so withered a little part of me. For I’ve always loved making things beautiful, until there was no time to make… anything. Except those chicken nuggets.
It was all bedlam.
Of course, there was plenty of beauty swaddled into our busy baby-powder scented days, but I was making memories for my children rather than making seasonal wreaths for our front door. Sending out group texts for playdates at the park, rather than hand-lettering invitations for a holiday party around my dining room table.
It was a different sort of beauty, indeed.
Half a decade and three little people later, I was ready to revisit some of those long buried beautiful parts of myself. At first it seemed impossible to fit my passions into the practical places of our family life, but I knew it was crucial. As I said, a part of me had withered, along with the plants that lined our little home.
So I did three things that, looking back now, were the stepping stones that let me out of the bedlam and back into the beauty of my uniquely delightful design.
- I told a friend about my dreams.
Words. Names. Labels. Stereotypes.
Close your eyes and take a minute to think about your childhood. Did one of those labels instantaneously pop into your mind from days of old?
Words mark us, don’t they? They drip deep into the marrow of who we are and when we least expect it, the negative ones surface and challenge the truth about ourselves.
We all know the old childhood chant, “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” Can you believe that was first coined in 1872? While I understand the author meant well, all these years we’ve chanted a lie.
Words hold power. They carve personalities. Words cripple or build up. They shape people in profound ways.
In One Little Perspective Change Altered How I Mother, I shared the gripping effect that words had on my mom. I grasp the depths of how my words impact our children. If you’re a mom please read this. It may shape you as well. [Read More…]
Growing up in the incredibly cold winter weather state of Wisconsin, I know something about protecting skin from the elements. Even though we made the big move from the North to the South years ago, our family still battles with all the dry skin issues that I did as a child and unfortunately, since I’ve become more (ahem, stumble around how I state this) “mature” in my age, dry skin has become my nemesis and I want to avoid all that comes with it. Not only do I have to change the type of make up I’ve used for a decade, I also have to adjust moisturizers.
While I don’t claim to be a miracle worker or have found the cure to stop my aging skin, I have learned some skin care tips that have dramatically improved my skin struggles (and helped slow those wrinkles).
Hydrate (and Humidify)
As soon as the heater gets cranked up in the house, it’s just natural for our skin to begin drying out. Immediate prevention occurs when we increase our water intake, which is just good for all around healthy and something I struggle with on a regular basis anyhow. Drinking enough water is so important. We also went and purchased a humidifier. Yes, we did. Since heaters blast dry air all day long, we added a humidifier to increase the moisture in the air, also helping with dry throats etc. I have oil diffusers, which double as small humidifiers, placed in our bedrooms and have essential oils diffusing at night.
For some reason, I’ve never been good about this, yet I know the importance of getting off that extra layer of dry skin, especially as I age (sigh).
Did you know that nearly two-thirds of U.S. women report that the older they get, the more difficult it is to keep their skin moisturized, plus they feel an average of six years older when their skin is dry and dull? Yes, I get that. [Read More…]