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Discovery: A Guide to Healthier Living

What happens when you can’t sleep at night?  You end up searching for something and finding something else online.  I found GoodGuide, a ratings guide to all sorts of products.  While all of these things should be taken with a grain of salt, it has been said their methods are not totally transparent, a look at this and comparing with other similar sites can aid in finding good choices for many items we use.

The good news was that most of the items I use aren’t horrible.  That said, there are quite a few items I am replacing asap.  Out of all the products I thought would be bad, I did not expect my shampoo to rate the worst.  The worst!  As in the lowest score you could get!  Going to buy a replacement tomorrow at the Body Shop.

What really worried me, more than my own items, was the ones for Bumble.  I searched for her brand of shampoo and body wash, given to us by our health conscious friends.  What do you know?  Not good.  Not at all.  We luckily had a set of another brand, Seventh Generation, that turned out to be ok so we switched.  Just in time, too; tonight was bath night.

You always hear not to believe everything you see/hear/read.  It’s true; just because a product says it’s natural or organic, does not mean that it actually is.  It’s an expensive lesson, but one I’d rather learn now.

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Monday: A Fun Day to Find Your Passion

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Well hello Monday! You started off with quite a bang!

First, you brought my husband home from work feeling dejected and unmotivated. You got his brain reeling. He wanted to talk about the future, about his passion. Unfortunately, he didn’t know if one would involve the other. He wasn’t even sure he knew what his passion was!

We ruminated on this for awhile until our regular daily duties took over. (These daily duties included a trip to the dermatologist in which my husband lost a mole. He said he was quite attached to it. Drum roll, please.)

In the meantime, I thought about how I was actually living part of my passion. I am an INFP; my values rule my world. Teaching and knowledge are extremely important, as is family. Right now I am privileged enough to spend my days with my Bumble and watch her develop. (Today she did full push-ups!)

I told him how thankful I was that his tedious job afforded me the opportunity to be with her. He gets it, but it doesn’t make the meaningless any easier to swallow. I get that, too. I had over ten years of that in my previous position. Accountant – what a four letter word. (Intended).

Anyway, back at grandma’s house Bumble was in a pretty bad mood. She ate and I somehow got her to laugh. To laugh! My baby! Have you ever heard the first time a baby laughs? It’s like when an angel gets its wings. It’s a million warm hugs snuggled up in a fuzzy blanket next to a fire in a log cabin on a snowy Christmas morning. Add making babies laugh to my passions.

Back at home we went online because I had seen something in a search awhile back. It was Oprah’s 4-Step Guide to Discovering Who You Were Meant to be. Here’s the link if you’re interested.

So we went through the motions; him first, then me. In the end it just made it clear that we knew all along what we are passionate about but were just over thinking it. The wonderful part is that both of us thrive on creation, how much fun is that? Mine just happens to be tangible goods and his is consumables.

What we are left with now is taking the next steps. Hubs is going to join a club to meet others who share his hobby and create with. I am more scatterbrained; I need to figure out a niche, I think. I’ve done pillows and they bore me. Writing long pieces takes up too much time. So please bear with me as I explore this further as it’s going to be incorporated here.

New goal: one new creative pursuit a week. I’ll post the finished products up on Sundays. Any suggestions for future projects just post below!

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Raspberry Falls

In a land where proper communication is the raspberry, the unmistakable phhhhhtttt made with tongue and lips, there is a slight problem. With so much being said, there seems to be an abundance of residue. That is, too much spit. Roads have been closed due to flooding. Everyone is trying to exchange ideas on how to fix the problem, but they’re only making it worse. Hills have become rapids. Cliffs and banks have become falls. Raspberryland you were so fun at first, but I believe it may be time to go on.

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E One

So tonight I hooked up my old E-one machine. Remember that one? Probably not.

I found a lot of old writings. The bad news was that I was terribly lonely and deeply depressed. I was in my late teens/early 20s. Could there be a silver lining to that?

OMG yes! The fiction I wrote back then – holy moly! I had no idea I could write like that. It was beautiful, reflective, thoughtful. I felt like I was reading someone else’s writing. If the content wasn’t so personal maybe I would have thought it was.

Obviously I don’t want to go back to that place, and I’ve done so much work on myself I hopefully couldn’t anyway. That was 15 years or so ago. How do I get that back?

I suppose it’s time to practice.

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Humble and Bright

You know those articles that really speak to you?  I had that happen to me today and I wanted to share it.

One of my friends shared a link to this post on Handsfreemama.com.  The author speaks about yelling, and about how she went about reducing it in her house.  Yes, that is important and something to strive for.  But what was so touching about this post in particular was the way she described it.  Instead of mulling out advice and acting like she knows all about everything as is often the case in these types of writings, she is so human.  She admits weakness.  She allows herself to put in the effort to change herself, for the betterment of her whole family.  She sees beyond the trees to the forest.  How brave to admit so publicly such a challenge.  And when the change has been made, she relates the difference.

What is so refreshing is that I’m sure so many of us can relate.  When we get frustrated or angry, we all have a way we resort to.  Maybe it’s not yelling, but the silent treatment.  Maybe it’s eating.  Whatever it is, our children see these things and learn from us.  To actually want to change these habits is huge.  Many people say, “I can’t change; this is just the way I am.”  The brain is pliable and connections are done and undone our whole lives; we can change.  We just have to want to.

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Paper Treasuries

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This is an image from a version of The Little Big Book for Moms.   (Note: The link is to a different edition than the one where this picture came from.)

My cousin is a librarian and gave me a ton of books for my baby shower, which was awesome!  I went through all the books a couple times, reading a whole bunch and gearing up for my daughter’s library.  One that I tended to avoid was this small sized, but very thick book that looked pretty old.  From the title, it seemed to be yet another book on advice for new moms.  When I sat down with these books, I wasn’t in the mood to read something serious.  I wanted childlike and fun!

Well, I happened upon it when unpacking and setting up the new nursery after we moved.  I decided to open it up and check it out, now ready for some good advice.  Good advice it is, indeed!  Yet, it is not overtly so.  Filled with nursery rhymes, songs, stories, crafts, and other items, it is a secret weapon for a good time with your baby.

What is amazing is that it is a good time for moms, as well.  This picture in particular made me stop and get nostalgic and wistful at the same time.  “For love of unforgotten times”, remembering my childhood.  My mother painting our faces and taking pictures.  Driving with my grandma.  Thinking about now, rocking with my Bumble.  The hardship we went through to get to where we are now.

It hit me like a ton of bricks.

There’s nothing like the complete magic you feel when you open a book that has been hiding all of it’s treasures from you.  I cannot wait to share this with my baby.  And from now on, it will be a purchase made to any baby showers I attend.  Yeah, it’s that good.

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Dreams, go on…

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Awhile back I mentioned that there were certain things I was really looking forward to doing with the Bumble.  Many of the items are things that will happen at a later time, when she is older and able to interact and understand more.  A few things are things that I could do right away, should I be able to.

One of these hopes was to play lullabies to her on my guitar.  I had the image glorified in my head; she would be laying sweetly in her crib while I sat by her side playing soft music as she fell asleep.  I would know all the right songs, and as she grew up they would hold a special place in her heart.  Cue the evil laughter!  Hahaha!

Right.  First, I owned a Classical guitar only before she was born.  The problem with that was that the neck was wide and my hand was having trouble accommodating that size.  My husband bought me a book of lullabies to learn many months in advance of her birth, however I only opened it a couple times.  To be fair, I was finishing my senior year in college, pregnant, getting ready to sell our house and move, and working.  So it’s not really like I was slacking.

The Bumble is now over a quarter of a year old, and I have yet to play her a lullaby.  I finally broke down and bought a new acoustic, which I LOVE by the way!  And since I am so incredibly rusty from not having played in many, many years, the band of hus bought me guitar lessons for my birthday!  Apparently he was very nervous about it thinking that I might not want them.  I, on the other hand, was very happy and impressed that he listened to my little hints.

It’s up to me when they start, so I am thinking next week.  I am extremely excited and glad to have classes so I can be held accountable for practicing.  Hey, that’s just how I am.

So, any recommendations of songs I should learn?