Prancercise

Prancercise

Not quite sure why I was thinking about Prancercise this morning. Perhaps it was my own giddy gate as I “pranced” around the kitchen making coffee that shook the memory loose. Mornings are my absolute FAV time of day. I’ll get up at least an hour before the rest of the family just to soak in the aloneness that’s all mine. I’ll even forfeit sleep to have these moments of quiet. It’s.the.best. I get AM adrenaline surges that literally make me go “eeeee” and make my hair stand on end. My husband, aka “the corpse”, is my exact opposite. Our kids seem to (thankfully) be a happy middle ground between our extremes.

Let’s face it… I “prance”. Esp in the mornings. Or to 80’s pop music. Or to fantastic summer breezes blowing in my windows. Basically whenever everything is right with the world and I’m overcome with energy and happiness. I “get” this Prancercising lady.

Do I prance in public? Uh… no. I guess that’s why I kinda envy the boldness of Joanna Rohrback. She’s so genuine, so true, so… herself. Looks like she could give a flying flip about what anyone else thinks. She gets to walking. She gets to listening to some music. She gets to jamming. And then she just lets herself get lost in the moment to the music. Does her movement look like everyone else’s? Not at all. But that’s ok. That’s how SHE rolls. And I TOTALLY appreciate that. I LOVE that. She is who she is and she does what she does regardless of what other people say and think of her. She put herself out there and shared from her heart, probably in hopes of encouraging others to free themselves from the shackles of what others think and to embrace their own inner beat. To get fit while having fun.

But boy, she’s been made fun of for doing so. Lots of parodies and jokes and whatnot out there bashing her for being so weird/strange.

Anytime anyone puts themselves out there, they risk the chance of being made fun of. Actually, it’s a guarantee… they WILL be made fun of or ridiculed or bashed, etc.

It’s a shame really. And with social media, people can hide behind their anonymity. They say things online that they’d NEVER say to someone’s face.

There’s def an art to learning how to let crap like that roll off your back and not let it affect your heart. I liken it to bullying. The very mental flow of a bully is this: 1) the bully feels like crap inside (for whatever reason), 2) they see someone else that’s “better” than them (or that has something good going on), 3) the bully feels even yuckier (& prob threatened), 4) so they say or do something mean in hopes of tearing that “better” person down to their level (or lower), 5) their wounded ego (temporarily) gets stroked, and 6) they (temporarily) feel better. It’s primal and requires very little thinking. But that feeling of ok-ness only lasts a for a little while. Then they have to repeat the process again in order to re-feel better about themselves. The only thing that will REALLY heal a bully is for they themselves to work on/through their issues. Bashing other people is not a permanent fix.

But anyways, back to Prancing. Joanna Rohrback is prob a truly happy person. An energetic person (obviously). And this prancing… it’s from the heart. And if I had to bet, there’s prob a LOT of other people out there that, if stripped from the cares of what others may say, they too would prance in public. Even on a fitness level, that added movement incorporated with regular walking probably does indeed burn more calories!

Though I may not “prance” in public for my exercise routine, I do genuinely appreciate Joanna’s staying true to who she is. That’s a technique we should all be learning to do in our own lives– a lofty goal we should all be attempting to achieve. It’s taking that risk and putting ourselves out there. It’s sharing our life, thoughts, experiences, successes & failures… to help others, touch other people’s lives, encourage them, and to better someone else (even if it’s just 1 person). It’s standing tall regardless of the ridicule.

For more on Prancercise, Joanna has a YouTube channel. You can also read up more about it on Wikipedia.

In closing, I hope you my reader are learning to care less about what other people are thinking about you. I hope you’re taking that risk and putting yourself out there to reach and touch other people’s lives. I hope you are learning to listen to constructive criticism but to let hurtful criticism roll off your back (and to have the wisdom to know the difference between the two). In your life, do your own form of “prancing”– be & do what you were created to be & do.

prancercise

 

Advertisements

Processing My Weekend

My family and I had a WONDERFUL and fun New Year weekend. I sure hope you did, too.

In no particular order:

-we ended up ringing in the New Year quietly as a family (well, as quiet as 6 kids can possibly be past their bedtime, LOL). We were gonna hang with friends but everyone already seemed to have plans. And to be honest, it looks like a Christmas hurricane went through our house so I wasn’t super thrilled with the idea of hosting. But it was cool just hanging out as a fam. Bought the kids some sparkling grape juice– they thought drinking “bubbly” was fun. The two littlest ones made it all the way to 10p. The rest stayed up till 1a. We watched ABC’s Rockin’ Eve party and we got to see Pentatonix perform. That was squeal-worthy for our kids. Collectively as a fam, we’re all on a big Pentatonix kick right now. :-p

PTX

Photo Cred: atrl.net/

-I totally gutted, cleaned, and minimalized our master bedroom this weekend. It looks so lovely. It kinda had became a catch-all room, unfortunately. But I wanted to make our bedroom a quiet, peaceful place, or a “Love Nest” as we jokingly coined it. So I did it! And I love it! I so want to keep it clean and tidy from here on out. Another one of my goals for this new year. Actually, what I’m ultimately wanting to do is to develop a cleaning/organizing/decluttering schedule that will touch on every room of our house. I want to then schedule it in my Google calendar what cleaning area(s) are up for the week so that my house can just be maintained all throughout the year. Toughest areas are those darn catch-all areas, aka my bedroom and the basement. One has been tackled. Yea. Next up: the Basement Beast. We just need to get metal storage shelves to put in the basement. We have camping gear, kid stuff galore, holiday decor, etc that we need and want but there’s no real “home” for them. So they sit in boxes on the floor taking up space needlessly. We need to get them UP. Gonna check out ads for Rural King, Big R, Lowes, Menards, etc to keep an eye on sales. That would help SO much having some of those.

-In cleaning my bedroom, I created a little “office area” for myself in the corner. Nothing special at this point in time but a table, chair, and lamp… but I am wanting to use that area for Bible Study time and writing… a little nook away from it all where I can focus. Eventually, I’d like to expand it and maybe have a place to put all my paperwork… and even get a small coffee pot up there. Even my hubby said it’d be great to wake up to the smell of coffee upstairs. I LOVE mornings. That is when I am wide awake and bushy-tailed, ready to take on the world. I do my best thinking in the morning. And no one needs me. It’s a glorious time. 😀

-We had our last Christmas hoorah Saturday with my husband’s extended family. We have (2) smaller Christmases left , one with some super close friends and one with my sister and her family. But those will be pretty low-key. Hubby and I worked hard Saturday morning making our infamous dips: Cheesy Bean and Spinach Artichoke (there was hardly any leftovers). I also whipped up a batch of yummy gluten free rolls. (Four out of the eight of us have gluten issues.) It was just a lot a fun– it’s always a blast hanging out with family, opening gifts, and eating. 😀 Later that night, as the kids were watching movies and things quieted down, I got to thinking about how absolutely blessed we are with family. On BOTH my side of the family and my hubby’s, there are just some fan-tabulous folks. There is so much love and support and encouragement… it blows my mind. God has SO richly blessed us!!!

-Thinking about teaching my 12 and 11 year old kids how to do their own laundry. They know how to use a tablet and a Wii U… I think they can figure out a washing machine. Thinking about putting a laundry basket in their bathroom… just for them. Everyone else has been trained to bring their dirties downstairs before breakfast. Laundry is THE THING in our house that everyone seems to absolutely despise. I’m not kidding– they’d rather clean toilets. Trying to figure out ways to simplify. If Ducklings #1 & #2 are responsible for ONLY their laundry… maybe that would help matters a bit.

-Gotta call the midwife tomorrow to make my first appointment. Inching my way to 15 weeks. Gotta get in to see her. Things are progressing well (and normal)– PTL. Meant to call her earlier, but got distracted with my illness and the holidays. Hope to be seeing her soon. Can’t wait to hear the heartbeat. That’s always such a cool thing. Still haven’t felt the little guy/gal move around yet– so hearing that first heartbeat makes it all seem more real. Still wearing my normal clothes. Just have a tiny bump. Kinda thinking this time around about NOT purchasing “maternity” clothes per say and just buying “bigger” clothes. I’ve heard of other ladies doing that and it seemed to work for them. Definitely cheaper going that route– maternity clothes can be expensive. Already purchased (2) larger sized things for this pregnancy– Colt’s shirts. LOL. Preggo in style! And I got a (blessing) text from one of my girlfriend’s and she offered to let me borrow her maternity clothes. She just had her precious baby boy a couple of weeks ago. (What a cutie he is!) SO THANKFUL! I had gotten rid of so much of my maternity clothing with my last baby– we honestly thought we were done. Surprise! Guess not! But I suppose much of what I had was out of style by now anyway.

-Gonna take down the Christmas stuff tomorrow. *sniff* Never ready for that. Christmas lights are so cozy and warm and uplifting. BUT, I plan on leaving the greenery and lights on the banister. That can stay for the winter months. Thinking of ways to make the dreary months of January, February, and March fun and decorative. Guess that means I need to make a big deal out of Valentine’s, St. Patrick’s Day, and Easter and decorate the house accordingly. Focusing NOT on the cold and darkness, but instead on the coming of Spring, which honestly isn’t THAT far away. It’s only 76 days away!!! My brain is already thinking about gardening plans! I’ve toyed with gardens in the past, but I’d really like to take a real swing at it this year. My kids LOVE picking veggies and berries and eating stuff out of the yard. And we’ve been blessed with a decent sized city lot, larger than most. We can most certainly grow a considerable amount in our lawn. Hmmm… time to dream and plan!

-My parents blessed us with Culver’s gift cards for Christmas. We went shopping this afternoon and we decided to treat the kids to dinner out. It was SO yummy! THEY HAVE GLUTEN FREE BUNS!!! They were super thick and fluffy buns– and I enjoyed every last carby bite of awesomeness. I cannot even remember the last time I had a BUN with my burger. It was so incredibly yummy. THANK YOU MOM & DAD!

-With that burger in mind… tomorrow, I start my next fitness challenge. Just prior to Christmas, I took on a Challenge to work out 30min/daily for the two weeks leading up to Christmas, only 2 rest days. Conquered it– even with a cold (flu?). My next Challenge is from Jan 4- Jan 31. I am to work out at least 30min/daily, 6 days a week AND I need to stick to an eating goal (which for me is to watch portions!). Gotta weigh and measure tomorrow AM. Now I’m obviously not seeking to lose weight, but I’m all about making healthier lifestyle choices. It’s online in a FB group. Gotta check in daily with what exercise(s) I did and what I ate (I’ll just take a pic of what I ate off of the YouFood app I already use). Gonna crush it. Even if I don’t win any prizes, it’s always a great thing for me personally to have a goal in which to aim for. Helps me make good choices and I always feel so accomplished when I finish.

-Tried my hand at Eggs Benedict this morning and EVERYONE loved it, even our picky 2 year old. We didn’t have English muffins or breakfast meat– but we used GF rolls from Saturday, and those that could have gluten just ate regular wheat bread toast. Poached some eggs with the poaching pan I got for an Xmas present this year. Topped it off with homemade Hollandaise sauce. So so yummy. Honestly didn’t know how the Hollandaise would go over with the kids, but they adored it. I’ll need to make a double batch next time. Everyone wanted seconds.

-In our shopping ventures this afternoon, I got a diffuser from Bed, Bath, and Beyond with the money we’d gotten back from a gift return. Didn’t even think to put that on my wish list, but I have wanted one for a loooong time. To experiment, we put some lavender essential oil in it when we got home and the kids thought that was super cool. Smelled wonderful. The toddler’s especially liked sticking their hands in the mist. It’ll be nice to put calming essential oils in it during homeschool hours. And it will also be cool to use healing essential oils like eucalyptus when someone gets sick. Gotta do some research now and see what kinds of essential oils we can use with it. All I have is lavender, Taming the Wild Child (LOL- it’s a calming blend), eucalyptus, lemon, thieves & citronella (although, I don’t know if thieves or citronella can go in a diffuser… gotta look into that). But it’d be fun to have different scents to work with. I know a lot of herbs and alternative healing methods… but I’m slowly baby stepping into EO’s. Heard so many people rave about their effectiveness. It’s intriguing.

-Introduced our kids to the movie Apollo 13 this weekend. Boy, I’d forgotten how on-the-edge-of-your-seat that movie was. Nail biter. And I even knew how it ended. Didn’t matter. Kids had mixed responses. The boys were all like, “SO cool… space… danger… there should have been more explosions, though…”. The girls were all like, “I NEVER EVER want to go to space… eek!” Me? I freakin’ loved seeing the clothes, home decor, and hairstyles the characters had. Not sure I’d like the ’69-’70 time frame– which is when Apollo 13 took place. But I’d LOVE to be able to go back in time to see the 50’s and 60’s. Life just looked so much simpler then. Harder in one sense because they didn’t have the conveniences we have today. But life just seemed so much slooooower. Ahh. That would be right up my alley! And to be honest, I like the fashion. 😀

-Re-picked up the book “Choosing Gratitude” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, now Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth!!! I’d gotten in back in 2013 and attempted to read it but didn’t get much past the first chapter. Not sure why. But man alive it sure is speaking to me now. It’s perfect! Not sure who all’s reading this… my close friends and family already know this, but perhaps you don’t. I’ll just get this out there: I struggle with anxiety and depression. Been that way now on and off for much of the past 2 years. Early symptoms showing up a couple of years prior even. Thankfully it hasn’t been debilitating. Nor do I have any desire to take medications for it. (Meds are for some people but I don’t feel it’s right for me.) Trying to heal this naturally. The more I seek for answers, the more I’m realizing that part of the problem is my lack of thankfulness to God for the many many blessings that He has given me. My focus is off of Him and instead is on the things that are going on around me circumstantially. I neglect to see God and His goodness all around me. That lends itself to a darker walk of life. I don’t want that! I want to walk with JOY. But it’s got to be a purposeful and intentional endeavor. JOY doesn’t just happen. It must be cultivated. So I am trying very hard to incorporate THANKFULNESS in my daily (moment-to-moment) walk. His blessings are literally everywhere, if we would just open our eyes and try to see it. Even in the darkest situations, there’s got to be a glimmer of something in which to be thankful for. Look for it. Well, that’s my goal. I want to be a more joy-filled person. I want to see the positive and the good… no longer focusing on the negative and the bad. And as a believer, I can have SO much joy just in thinking about being saved from my sins (thank You, Jesus!) and spending an eternity in Heaven with God Himself. I just have to focus on it. So I must take captive my every thought.

—————————————–

So anyway… yeah… had a lot on my mind from this weekend. Wanted to share it with y’all. Looking forward to a new week. Gonna focus on the blessings!!! Hope you, too, have an incredible week.

Any comments or questions, feedback on EO’s or seeking joy or about anything else I posted, I’d love to hear it.

Later everyone.

~Momma Duck

I’m Back

Yikes. I haven’t blogged since Oct 27! That’s 2 months!

I didn’t mean for that to happen… but… (yep, here’s my list of excuses)… 1) I was going through some nasty morning sickness with Baby #7 that left me down and out on the couch, 2) when I finally did start feeling better, I got hit with a nasty cold (flu?) that, once again, left me down and out on the couch, 3) my laptop died and my hubby had to get me another one, and then 4) the holiday’s struck.

So here I am, two months later, still pregnant (nearing 14 weeks!), done with the morning sickness, almost over my cold (flu?), the proud owner of a “new to me” laptop, and the only holiday on the horizon is New Years. Wait, we do have one more family Christmas this coming Saturday, but that’s it.

*huge sigh of relief*

You should seriously see my long neglected to-do list. It’s staggering. Survival mode is for the birds, man. It was a chore just to get food on the table these past two months. But I miraculously was also able to do school (from my perch on the couch) and prep and participate in Christmas (mostly from my perch on the couch as well). We are so far behind we haven’t even mailed out our Christmas family photo cards yet. Well… better late than never I suppose. Hope to get on that tonight.

During my many on-the-couch-perch-times, I’ve had a lot of time to think about things. One of those things being this here blog… Hubby came to me the other day about whether or not to pay for the renewal of this site… do I want to continue blogging? I honestly didn’t know what to tell him.

That man… he actually went back and read ALL my posts here on Momma Duck… all the way through, no skimming. He was so impressed that he decided on his own accord to renew my website for another year. He didn’t wait for my response. Later he came to me and strongly encouraged me to keep writing.

He says I have a gift. A GIFT! That’s pretty cool to hear because it seems like the only things I’m “gifted in” is diaper changing and maybe cooking.

But writing? He thinks I’m gifted at writing? Wow…

Honestly, at any given moment I have SO much bumbling around in my head. And I write in my journal all.the.time. But so many articles go unpublished. Why?

Fear.

I fear putting my thoughts out there because… I hate rejection. It’s so hard to put yourself out there and possibly face ridicule. Perhaps that’s just how any artist must feel. Your draw, cook/bake, sculpt, sing, write music, etc and many will be touched and encouraged and blessed by your work. But it won’t be for everyone. Not everyone is going to like the same work of art or the same song.

So it goes with writing.

I HOPE that what I say here will reach and warm the hearts of others. But I have to accept the fact that my blog isn’t for everyone. If they don’t like me or my writing, or they’re offended by what I have to say, etc then apparently this blog is not for them. And I need to be ok with that. I just need to write from the heart, write about what inspires me, write about what interests me… and let the pieces fall where they will.

I must let go of my fear.

So with that thought in mind… I’ve decided to take my hubby up on his words of encouragement and WRITE. Starting January 1st, I plan to have new material posted here 2x/wk (still deciding which days) and to keep up weekly/regularly with my Instagram account and my Facebook page. (All those social media links are on the right side bar–>.)

So yeah… that’s what’s been up these past two months… and now you know where I’m heading blogging wise in the future. 🙂

i_m_back

Photo Cred: the-angry-scot.blogspot.com/

Brief Miscellan-ey

Not too shabby for my 11 year old & 7 year old sons!
They can def make a mean salad.

2015-10-07 18.23.02

———————————————————–

This summer, my children have taken it upon themselves to keep praying mantises as pets. Not sure how it’s been elsewhere in the US, but where we live, there has been a crazy number of them in our yard! They’re actually kinda cute… for a bug.

We had a male, Camo, but he recently died for unknown causes. Our female, Maple, however is thriving and just recently laid her egg sac! We knew she was “with child” when we saw her eating her partner. Very gruesome.

Anyways, we now have an egg sac. We took it outside so it can winter safely and perhaps we can watch it hatch in the spring. Kids are wanting very much to have future mantis pets.

2015-10-07 17.40.01

———————————————————————-

And finally, I have picked up yoga this summer/fall. I am *really* liking it as it is extremely calming and healing. Since I struggle with anxiety, it has been wonderful getting introduced to yoga.

Any other yogi’s out there?

True Repentance… what’s it all about?

Today, I created a chart for my middle kiddos that are struggling with what repentance really looks like. They now have this handy little chart in their rooms to help guide them in their prayers for repentance.

It looks something like this:

1- ADMIT and CONFESS sin. (Father God, I did _________.)

2- ASK for forgiveness. (Please God, forgive me for ________.)

3- ASK for help. (Help me God to stop ________.)

4- TRY to quit. (Decide: I will try to quit ________.)

repentance

My oldest child has a pretty good handle on this personally. When she sins, she’s actually grieved in her heart. She’s quick to make things right with God and those she may have hurt.

My next child is 50/50 on handling his sin issues. If he gets stuck, he usually just needs a quick repentance reminder and he goes and takes care of the sin.

My next two have really been struggling with this for a while. They have both accepted Christ and both understand that their salvation is sure and secure. But they’re struggling with taking care of sin issues as they crop up throughout the day. They don’t seem to be grieved by sin. They don’t seem to go to the Lord in prayer to make things right with Him. It’s very hard to get them to make things right with the people they hurt. And they keep committing the same sins over and over.

So today, out of frustration over a sin issue that cropped up, I sat Child #3 & #4 down and thoroughly explained step-by-step the process of true repentance. How they have to 1- admit and confess that *they* did XYZ and it was wrong. That they then need to 2- ask God for forgiveness for XYZ (being very specific about what action(s) was wrong). That they can totally (and should) 3- ask God for help to resist this sin in the future. And then, to 4- make the personal decision to try and not do XYZ again. To work this repentance process with God first… and then to follow this same process with whoever they sinned against.

It really seemed to open their eyes. They apparently had no idea.

Typically, I would rebuke and discipline and teach and they’d be like “yeah, ok mom”– but they’d keep doing the same thing over and over again. My teaching and discipline seemed to go in one ear and out the other.

After our discussion on this process of true repentance, an opportunity came up within the next hour to test out this process. Child #3 got into a squabble with Child #1. Feelings were hurt. Things were said that were mean. The relationship was broken. After disciplining Child #3, I sent her to her room to go through the repentance process with God alone. She was up there a while but eventually came down looking like she’d dealt with it. I nudged her to make things right with her sister using this same process (subtracting Step 3, asking for help to quit ______). You should have seen child #1’s face when her sister came to her and said, “I did ______. It was wrong. Would you please forgive me? And I promise to try and quit doing ______ to you.” Child #1 nearly fell to the floor. She’d never heard her sister talk like that! It was SO cool to watch them reconcile and make things right and hug! YEA!!! It worked!!! And I’m not kidding, Child #3’s disposition has changed drastically today! She has been SO pleasant to be with. It’s like *seeing* the process of true repentance written on paper for her to follow was just the thing she needed!

I KNOW we will be using this chart in the very near future. Sin unfortunately always rears it’s ugly head. But I know I can discipline and teach and help lead them through this process.

I guess I always just assumed they understood repentance.
Child #1 and #2 seemed to get it right away, without much teaching.

But I thought I would share this experience with you my readers. If you’re having a young child that is struggling with recurrent sin issues and you’re not making any headway, perhaps it would be helpful to actually ask them if they truly understand the repentance process. They may not.

Perhaps you could try writing out the above steps too so they could take something with them when they go and pray, something to give them direction and guidance.

repentance2

Hope you have a blessed day!

♥ Momma Duck

Dealing With a Mild Illness

I always hesitate a bit to share with people how to naturally treat illnesses from home. For a number of reasons. Some think it’s load of hooey. Some are anti anything-having-to-do-with-alternative-health (very pro doctor). Even if people are into natural healing, there are SO many differing approaches (herbs, homeopathics, essential oils, etc). And many people are quite passionate about their beliefs, to the point that some individuals turn nasty if you or someone else holds a different belief system. We seem to live in a very touchy/easily offended world. It honestly doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me why people feel personally attacked when someone has a different view point or set of beliefs. That’s just life. That’s humanity. It’s really nothing to get upset about or take personally.

Alas, because of the backlash I see so many people get when they speak up, I’ve chosen to remain quiet. 😦
I’ve never really been a big wave-maker or pot-stirrer.

But as I grow in my faith with God, though, I’m beginning to understand a few things more clearly.

Number 1– this “remaining quiet” thing is actually rooted in a “fear of man”. And I should fear GOD more than I fear man.

For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man?
If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
Gal 1:10

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men…
Col 3:23

The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.
Prov 29:25

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Gal 2:20

Number 2– if God has entrusted me with knowledge and wisdom and spiritual gifts, He wants and expects me to share and use those gifts to bless/encourage others for His glory.

Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.
Rm 12:6-8

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
1 Pet 4:10-11

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, …
1 Cor 12:4-11

And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, …
Eph 4:11-16

Number 3– I’m now an “older woman” to several ladies. I’m nearing 36 years of age and I have lived and learned a decent amount concerning marriage, motherhood, roles of womanhood, homemaking, etc. I was trained to be a worldchanger through education and having a career– so I started this road of homemaking and mothering as a newbie. I learned (mostly through failure, unfortunately) what I know now in regards to being a godly wife and mother (still learning, always learning, love learning). It is actually a biblically based mission for me to come alongside younger ladies and teach, help, strengthen, and encourage them as they establish homes of their own.

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.
Titus 2:3-5

Number 4– I have gone through some pretty dark days as an adult. Frequently I battle depression… and this last year specifically: anxiety (so not fun). We had major financial issues early on in our marriage, and so, had to live with family for many years in order to get grounded. We had a miscarriage in July ’07. We also had a stillbirthed daughter born at 37 weeks (Miss Baby Rose) in April 2010. Adulthood has not been a walk in the park for me. It’s been real and it’s been tough. But God… He’s ALWAYS been there for my husband and I (and for our kids). He’s comforted me in SO many ways. I can, and most definitely should, comfort others with the comfort that I have received.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ.…
2 Cor 1:3-5

Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; He will never permit the righteous to be moved.
Ps 55:22

The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
Ps 9:9

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Ps 46:1

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
1 Pet 5:6-7

Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.
Ps 30:5

I could go on and on and on with all the MANY verses there are about “comfort” in the Bible!

—————————————————————————

Ok, so wow. All that to say: I’m gonna share with you a *quick tip* on how to naturally heal mild illness in your family. LOL

I’m not going to fear man.
I *do* have knowledge and wisdom to share.
I am an older woman that can help a younger woman.
And maybe (hopefully) this post will be an encouragement and comfort to someone!

My 2 yr old daughter, Miss Pebbles, came down with a low-grade fever yesterday. Other symptoms: runny nose, lethargy, mild cough, and sneezing. She just has a little bug that’s getting her down.
Before I knew a thing or two about natural healing, I would simple “wait it out” and let the bug “run it’s course”. Or I would give over the counter (OTC) medicine that would only relieve the symptoms.
About the time we had our 3rd child, we started looking into natural/home remedies.
Now hear me out: we are NOT anti-doctor! We *do* take our children to the doctor if they are really hurt or if my home remedies aren’t working. Doctors truly have been given the gift of healing from God and if the situation warrants it, we’ll go! But… if I can treat it from home (like sniffles, chickenpox, mild cuts and wounds, vomiting, diarrhea, etc), I will.
As I learned about natural healing, I realized that the best thing you can do is *boost the immune system* when someone gets sick. As *soon* as symptoms of any kind start rearing their head, I am ON IT. I do *not* wait. I aim to boost that immune system as quickly as possible so the body can more quickly recover.
~~What I did for Miss Pebbles is the following:
1- rubbed a good lather of garlic oil on her chest, feet (put on some socks!), neck, and around (and in) her ears.
2- rubbed Baby Vicks on her back (yes, I still use OTC stuff– someday I hope to experiment with homemade baby vicks, but not today).
3- gave her 1/2 a tablet of chewable vit C (I like Puritans Pride brand).
4- gave her a bit of Tylenol for the fever (yes, I know… another OTC *wink*).
5- mixed a few drops of liquid echinacea (from Nature’s Sunshine**) with her juice and had her drink that.
6- kisses and cuddles and lots of touch.
7- prayer for healing.
8- put her down for sleep
The garlic gets into her bloodstream and starts attacking/killing the virus or bacteria or whatever’s getting her down.
The Baby Vicks opens her airways so she can breathe better.
The vit C and echinacea boost her immune system.
Touch has clinically been proven to aid in healing.
Prayer changes things. God is the Great Physician!
Sleep rejuvenates and heals the body.
I will give the garlic & herbs about 3x/day until the illness subsides… and then for a day after (or maybe 2 if it’s a tough bug) just to make sure the bug is really gone.
Guess as illness presents itself in our home, I’ll share other things that we do naturally.
It’s just so comforting to know that I can do *something* to aid in the process of healing (and not just relieve symptoms) and that I don’t have to wait for the bug to just take it’s course.
**If you open an new account with Nature’s Sunshine in order to purchase herbs, please let me know beforehand! You can “become a member” and earn 33% off retail price. I’ll share with you how!

How to make a bone broth

Today, I want to teach you how to make homemade bone broth. Broths are awesome for making soups or gravies or using in recipes or for *whatever*. Plus they are super healthy. There’s LOTS of immune-boosting goodies in bone marrow that cooks into the broth. I have steamed (or sauteed) veggies with broth rather than plain water (or oil). I’ve crockpotted meats & veggies in bone broth. I use bone broths *especially* when the kids get sick. I whip out a bag of this, heat it up, add noodles or rice, and voila, quick healthy soup for the sickie(s). Every woman has her own method (there’s a bazillion methods online), but this is what I do in my kitchen. And this is what my kids all had when they were growing up. Every broth I create is just a tad different, based on what veggies, meats, or spices/herbs I use. So as I step you through this, know that each batch varies. This is a very simple recipe that has endless possibilities. Experiment and see what you like flavor-wise. So, #1, start with a bone from a roast that still has a bit of meat on it. Add any kind of veggie you want. In this broth batch I have a ham bone and I’ve thrown in carrots, celery, onion, and spinach. Don’t worry about nicely chopping pretty pieces. They can be large. They’ll cook down. Cover with water. Add any spices you’d like. This batch has garlic salt, red pepper flakes, pepper, marjoram, dried onion, and dried garlic. I added a decent scoop of chicken bouillon, too. If you don’t have the paste kind, you can just add 3-4 cubes. If you’re using a beef type of bone/meat, just use beef bouillon. But otherwise, for chicken or ham I just use chicken bouillon.

2015-05-01 12.35.40Bring to a boil.

2015-05-01 12.36.17Drop to a very low simmer and allow to slowly simmer (uncovered) for approximately 3 hours.

2015-05-01 12.54.42Done

2015-05-01 16.10.02In a big pot, place a colander inside.

2015-05-01 17.06.15Line with cheese cloth or a thin, clean kitchen towel.

2015-05-01 17.06.48Strain the bone and veggies out from the broth.

2015-05-01 17.08.02The leftovers.

2015-05-01 17.08.11Yummy, beautiful broth.

2015-05-01 17.11.55This is when I pull all the little bits of leftover meat off the bone.

2015-05-01 17.13.56There’s enough meat here for topping a couple of baked potatoes, sprinkling on salad, adding to a sandwich, etc. Just throw away the bone and the cooked veggies. They’ve done their job. 🙂

2015-05-01 17.22.40Let the broth cool down… then refrigerate. Depending on the meat, once cooled there may be a film of fat that will rise to the top and solidify. I’ll often pick that off. Yuck. (Personal preference)

So here’s my refrigerated ham broth. Surprisingly, not much fat at all. So I’ll just leave the fat alone on this one.

2015-05-03 16.38.39I didn’t measure, but I divided the broth semi-evenly into quart bags and then added them to a gallon size freezer bag. If you want to be specific, you can measure out 14 oz per bag, that equals 1 can.

Label and then put in the freezer. It’s ready for whatever meal you need.

Super easy. Super tasty.

2015-05-03 16.46.19