Looking for unique gifts for the man who has everything? We’ve put together a list of 15 creative gifts we think might fit the bill!
It’s that time of year when we start making our own quick iced coffee at home. It saves us a lot of empty calories and money, making it a perfect cold summer drink for the coffee addict! Just because it’s summer shouldn’t mean that your coffee sets your dietary goals on their ear.
Are you looking to make money blogging? Not sure where or how to start? We were in the same boat! We’ve found a course in Affiliate Marketing that you won’t want to miss!
Blogging can be really difficult. There’s no doubt about it!
Building your website, writing amazing content, learning SEO and optimizing your posts, finding or creating images, creating your social marketing plans, connecting with your followers – all to share information about a topic or topics that you are passionate about and think others might enjoy or benefit from reading more about! That’s a lot of work. And for what?
Do you know when Father’s Day 2017 is? If you’re like me I am always caught off guard by how quickly it creeps up on us!
So, I thought I’d get a jump on it this year. Read to mark your calendar?
Circle it! Father’s Day 2017 => June 18th
Father’s Day 2017…. is Sunday, June 18th! Just over 3 weeks away. That gives us just enough time to find the perfect Father’s Day gift!
Stay tuned! Father’s Day isn’t far off!
The Broken Way: A Daring Path into the Abundant Life by Ann_Voskamp
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Lately, I’ve been reading “The Broken Way” by Ann Voskamp and she poses a couple of tough questions! “What if the abundant life isn’t about having better stories to share but about living a story that lets others live better? What if the goal isn’t to experience more of the world but for more of the world to experience more?”
New Year’s Resolutions
New Year’s Resolutions? But, it’s mid-May, you say? Yes! We’re 5/12’s of the way through 2017. So, tell me. Honestly! How are you doing with your New Year’s Resolutions?
It seems that every year we make our list of New Year’s Resolutions and by January 3rd, we’ve thrown in the towel. Life starts to creep back into our plans and best intentions get put to the side. All the things that want to accomplish with another new year. All the best made plans. All the health choices, career choices, relationship choices – lost in the busyness.
I don’t know if that’s your story… but it is certainly ours!
From the cradle to the grave is a term that we understand to mean: throughout our lives; from beginning to end. We all have dreams and ideas of how life will unfold and what the typical life journey should look like. Unfortunately, the road is not clearly marked and is rarely even paved!
We start school at the ripe-old age of 5 and set our sights on getting through school so we can be “free” from the school routines, homework and exams that get in the way of our living. Then we are abruptly cast into the work force to find our wings. We navigate our careers and work to climb up ladders (to who knows where).
We opt-in to pensions plans and contribute to our retirement plans, all the while moving the goal line to whatever age our magic retirement calculator tells us is the financially best for us to shirk off the golden handcuffs of employment and embrace our retirement. Early retirement if we’re really lucky!
We may marry and raise a family and fight to keep a work-life balance, spending quality family time together during vacations that are limited in number – due to finances and our vacation calendars at work. 17 days a year. Maybe 22. Spent recovering and unwinding from the busyness of life.
And then the day finally comes that we have enough candles on our birthday cake and we are “free”. We look forward to the life we have always dreamed of. Time to travel. Time to pursue our hobbies. Time to spend with our families – who are now too busy themselves, or also caught with limited vacation time and a hamster-wheel hangover at the end of each work week.
And of course, with those golden retirement years come hip replacements, knee replacements, arthritis, heart attacks, strokes, high cholesterol and the ever-dreaded C word. Some of get through easily enough. Others not so much so.
And then one day, it’s all over. The eulogy of your life is shared. The boxes of memories are packed away. The knowledge and experiences you have stored up over the years, now exists only in what you’ve written down or passed along to others. It is a sobering thought.
Trying it a Different Way
So, let’s propose trying it a different way! What does that look like? If only we knew! But seriously, there has to be a better way!
There are lots of parents who are breaking away from the pack. It is not uncommon for men to take paternity-leaves or put on the hat of stay-at-home-dad. And there are so many business women who are switching up their careers so they can be a stay-at-home-mom to their children. The questions that are often asked: why would we want someone else to raise our children? Why wouldn’t we want to spend these precious and short-lived years with them while we have the chance?
We see parents chosing to home school. Some even take leaves from their careers and start businesses that they can manage from the comfort of their own homes and accommodating their own schedules and lives. Think of the freedom that affords a family. They can now take their classroom anywhere in the world! How amazing is that?
We’ve been asking ourselves similar questions lately. Why would we want someone else to care for our parents? Why wouldn’t we want to spend these precious and numbered years with them while we have the chance?
Now, don’t ask us exactly what that looks like – because we have far from figured it out! But it’s the question that we are asking these days. What would that look like?
Can we make it happen? Do we have the energy and skill and resources to be able to even consider it? I’d say maybe to energy! Barely to skill! And unlikely to resources! At least if we want to consider pursuing our ideals of retirement when that day arrives. But honestly – we’re not sure that matters. We can’t take the green-backs with us when we go.
I’ve been reading from Ann Voskamp’s “The Broken Way” lately in my morning reflections time. She poses an interesting question:
What if the abundant life isn’t about having better stories to share but about living a story that lets others live better? What if the goal isn’t to experience more of the world but for more of the world to experience more?
Again, it turns my mind to the question of spending these golden years with our parents. While I still write my Goal Lists and Travel Lists – and hope to one day have many more memories and stories to share with others, living a life and creating a story that lets our parents live better, now, might just be the call to abundant living that we are to heed!
Advocating for the Best
Good, better, best. Never let it rest. ‘Til your good is better and your better is best. (St Jerome)
Join us on our Journey
So, as we figure this out and start to pull together our own resources and support networks, we hope that you’ll join us. If you’re on a similar journey, we’d love to connect with you and learn from you, too! We don’t pretend to know where this road will take us, but we get up each new day and keep walking it out.
Is forever enough? ’cause I’m never, never giving you up!
So, tonight Frank is watching a movie with his folks, and I decided to take some quiet time to listen to some music on my own. And while listening to a random play of country music, the Dixie Chick’s Lullaby came up. It is a song that is familiar to me, but tonight it seems to sit closer to my heart.
Another Day is Done
Another day is done and in the history books. It was a gorgeous, hot, sunny day, with the promise of a thunderstorm that didn’t materialize. There is something of today, that brought to mind the song “Day is Done” which is often sung to the tune of Taps. And so, as I close out the day, and get ready to turn it, I leave you with these reassuring words for your rest: God is nigh! Rest peacefully knowing He is near!
Taps (Day is Done) by Horace Lorenzo Trim
Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.
Fading light, dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright.
From afar, drawing nigh, falls the night.
Thanks and praise, for our days,
‘Neath the sun, ‘neath the stars, neath the sky;
As we go, this we know, God is nigh.
While the light fades from sight,
And the stars gleaming rays softly send,
To thy hands we our souls, Lord, commend.
Relaxing Respite Retreat – Essential to our own Wellbeing
Frank and I are just back from our second Relaxing Respite Retreat! And we have decided that they are absolutely essential to our own health and wellness as caregivers! Respite is so important to help prevent caregiver burnout! We need time to relax, rest and retreat from our responsibilities. Our little Relaxing Respite Retreats are “all about us” time – specifically designed as time to relax, rest, retreat, recharge, rejuvenate and reconnect! Enough “R” words? 🙂
Epsom Salts are magnesium sulphate based and are touted as being amazing for the body. There are some many reason to buy a bag and start adding them to your bath! But during our Relaxing Respite Retreats, my number one reason is help us relax and sooth our weary, tired bodies! And how can you go wrong with a hot bath in epsom salts! When I was working as a Registered Nurse, I would come home after a long shift, run ragged off my feet. I would draw a hot epsom salt bath and soak the stress of my shift away!
So when we go away, it is always a bonus to be able to book a hotel with a lovely soaker tub! This trip was no different. And over the course of just 3 days and 2 nights away, I enjoyed 4 relaxing soaks! You can read more about our little Relaxing Respite Retreat here. But I wanted to share some ideas for mixing aromatherapy into your respite time! And even into your regular routines, as able.
I am a huge fan of essential oils and aromatherapy. Some people claim that essential oils have lots of healing properties. I am more of the mind that it’s the essential oils that you enjoy most that are the best for you!
So into a hot bath with 3 cups of epsom salts, I add 5-10 drops of my favourite essential oil of choice.
Below is a list of some of my favourites for bathing. Together with each are a few of their aroma benefits. Although the most important benefit in my opinion, is how they leave me feeling personally. Given them a try and see how you like them!
Eucalyptus Oil helps to clear the mind, promote feelings of relaxation and clear breathing.
Lavender Oil can help reduce anxious feelings, promote peaceful sleep, and help ease feelings of tension.
Rosemary Oil helps reduce nervous tension and fatigue.
Wild Orange Oil is a powerful cleanser and purifying agent and is uplifting to the mind and body.
Cheer® Uplifting Blend promotes feelings of optimism, cheerfulness, and happiness. It can counteract negative emotions and provide a boost of happiness and positivity when you are feeling down. It features Wild Orange Peel, Clove Bud, Star Anise Fruit/Seed, Lemon Myrtle Leaf, Nutmeg Kernel, Vanilla Bean Extract, Ginger Rhizome, Cinnamon Bark, Zdravetz Herb.
Console® Comforting Blend promotes feelings of comfort and hope and counteracts negative emotions of grief, sadness, and hopelessness. It uses sweet floral and tree essential oils to promote feelings of comfort, putting you on a hopeful path of emotional healing. It features Frankincense Resin, Patchouli Leaf, Ylang Ylang Flower, Labdanum Leaf/Stalk, Amyris Bark, Sandalwood Wood, Rose Flower, Osmanthus Flower.
Balance® Grounding Blend promotes a whole body sense of relaxation and may help ease anxious feelings bringing balance to the emotions. The warm, woody aroma of Balance® is a perfect blend of Spruce, Ho Wood, Frankincense, Blue Tansy, and Blue Chamomile with Fractionated Coconut Oil to offer an enticing fragrance that promotes tranquility and relaxation.
Serenity® Restful Blend promotes relaxation and a restful sleeping environment while lessening feelings of tension and calming the emotions. The addition of Cedarwood, Ho Wood, and Vetiver essential oils gives dōTERRA Serenity® a grounding aroma that calms the mind and soothes the senses.