self-care

5 Book Recommendations from My Mid-Year Favorites {2017}

Here we are, mid-July and mid-summer. Six months of reading time over and six more months to find more good books! I love must-read book recommendations from trusted friends and writers. I consider it a gift when you read something and think to recommend it to me. This book list post is my gift to you. So far, forty-two books graced my nightstand or ear buds in 2017. These are my top five [Read more...]

6 Ways to Press Pause When You’re Too Busy

The thump-thump of my heart echoed in my ear, the tightness in my chest only increasing its volume. My peripheral vision blurred a bit as I desperately searched for all the things I thought we might need. I almost didn’t recognize my own shrill and panicked voice as I demanded, “Hurry! Get in the car!” With all the drama, one might think we were rushing out of a burning [Read more...]

The Powerful Connection between Pain and Hope

As an Occupational Therapist, I deal with other people’s pain daily. As soon as the introductions are over, I ask about pain levels. “Do you hurt anywhere? On a scale of one-to-ten, how much pain are you in? Describe your pain.” Most people I encounter are in some kind of pain, so much so that I sometimes become numb to pain. When chronic pain hits someone you love, it is both heartbreaking [Read more...]

My Favorite Books of 2016

I love reading, but when I became a mom, my reading time was devoted to Dr. Seuss and our weekly children’s library stack. I love a good rhyming life lesson as much as the next person, but I missed getting lost in a good story or learning something new about the world or myself from a new non-fiction selection. When I became super-intentional about goal setting a few years ago, I set out to [Read more...]

5 Movies to Watch When You Need a Good Cry

I don’t like to cry. My medical chart lists it as a diagnosis: dry eye disease. My aversion to crying is one part physiological and one part control freak. I try my best to hold it together at all times. It makes me feel bad sometimes, especially when someone breaks down in front of me and I can’t deliver sympathy tears. My heart feels it, but my eyes stay dry. However, a time comes [Read more...]

10 Things to Do When Mama Needs a Time Out

Do you ever felt like your mommy head might explode? Be it a colicky baby, a mischievous middle child, or a sassy-mouthed teen, sometimes our kids push us to the limit. Add the housework, responsibilities outside the home, and the fatigue inherent with motherhood, and we moms can be a ticking time bomb. Let’s face it, girls. Sometimes mama needs a time out. Whether you have three minutes or [Read more...]

How to Find Your Summer Break Sanity

Can summer break be over? It’s kids all day, every day. (Teachers, how do you even deal?) I start each day with an awesome and ambitious list of all the things I plan to accomplish. I put off my shower in hopes I can go for a run. I end up missing my run because getting a two-year-old and twelve-year-old out the door is like wrangling two skittish squirrels into a coffee can. I spend the [Read more...]

5 Things I Wish I Had Known

You don’t know what you don’t know. It is one of those statements that is so basic, yet so deep. When we enter into a new phase of life, we have expectations and are sometimes knocked down by our reality. How many times have you said to yourself, “If only I’d known…”? Wisdom is underrated in the young. When I consider my not-so-great decisions, they are most [Read more...]

5 Book Recommendations from My Mid-Year Favorites

At the beginning of the year, I set a goal to read two books a month. I started with a list of titles I wanted to read. Along the way, I picked up book recommendations from my sister, my friends, and a few writers I follow. The number of books I want to read far exceeds the amount of time I have so I appreciate others’ endorsements to help me narrow the list down a bit. We are at the [Read more...]

Service: “Have To” or “Get To”?

I frequent a certain fast food chain and always order a number one with lemonade. It doesn’t matter who takes my order, the transaction always ends with, “It’s my pleasure.” The cashier always wears a smile, and I sense he or she truly enjoys serving me that chicken sandwich on a buttery bun. I encounter the same kind of smile at church. Mrs. Rita opens the door for my family almost every [Read more...]