Entertainment Center Make Over

Today, I wanted to show you some pictures of an Entertainment Center that I bought from a friend for $75.00

This unit is very solid and had great bones.

The style of it was what needed some help.

It looked like a flash from the past, and I wanted it to become the focal point of my formal living room.

Enjoy the pictures.

(If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them in the comment box below.)

tv cabitnet before

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As you can see in the BEFORE picture. This cabinet had GREAT bones. It just needed an update.

 

 

 

 

20160731_162959

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first thing I did was sand the entire cabinet to make sure that the MINWAX GEL STAIN would stick to the surface.

Then I purchased these gorgeous accent pieces from RESTORATION HARDWARE to give the cabinet some interest and style.

I painted them to look like old silver cut outs then I nailed them to the front of the two bottom drawers and on the front of the TV stand I built for this project.

I replaced the round knobs on each drawer with some old cupboard handles that I took out of an old trailer house kitchen.  I repainted the handles to make them look like silver jewelry.

 

 

 

20160731_162828

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next thing I did was paint the shelves a light turquoise blue color to match the other pieces of furniture in my living room.

I used the gel stain to mimic the look of Hickory wood.

Now with the added inlay’s this piece looks like a custom cabinet that cost hundreds of dollars.

The finished project cost me $115.00. 

So, I now have a custom piece of furniture in my home that looks expensive, but actually was very affordable.

 

Here are the side by side pictures of the BEFORE and AFTER

 

 

 

Can Failure REALLY be a GOOD thing?

 

I believe everything we need to succeed is inside us as children,

it often gets slowly pushed out of us as we grow older.

By the time we’re teenagers we have either forgotten these lessons
or
been forced to bury them.

 

If you are like me,

DEEP inside you don’t feel any different than you did at age ten or twelve,

EXCEPT…

That you likely don’t play baseball anymore,

AND you probably haven’t done a somersault in years.

(I am not suggesting you start.)

What I am saying is that you get back a few of those great qualities you had as a kid that kept your mind open to possibility and made life fun, interesting, and full of hope.

Here’s a few ideas on how you can do just that:

 

#1: Learn to enjoy failure.

If you really stop and think about it long and hard…

Everything you did as a kid required  TRYING & FAILING.

Climbing a tree,

Riding a bike,

or tying your shoes

all forced you to fumble and fail.

But you did not care.

Mistakes were just part of the process.

You had no embarrassment or shame –

only a desire to go faster to learn and master all of the exciting things that were ahead of you.

One of the most powerful ways you can immediately Rid yourself from fear of failure is to start learning RIGHT NOW how you can let go of what other people think about you.

 

 

The obsession with perfection, fearing mistakes and failure ruins opportunities and destroys your potential.

Oh and another thing, failures teach you valuable lessons just like they did when you were young.

Ever burn your hand on a hot stove?

See, you never did that again, did you?

 

#2: Start asking.

Have you ever spent much time around a child?

If so, you know that they NEVER stop asking questions.

When you were young you were the very same way.

You asked questions all the time because you were curious.

As adults we have let go of that great skill.

We  start to just assume we can predict what people are thinking.

We THINK we already KNOW what they will do.

 

Exactly how they will answer our question.

We assume they won’t buy,

they won’t help,

or that they are not interested.

Now that may be true, but how do you know for sure?

Rejection is all around.
But avoiding rejection from others means you reject yourself first!

Give other people the opportunity to say no and don’t make assumptions.

 

#3: Don’t take no for an answer.

giphy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Okay, I am not suggesting you become a spoiled brat.

I am NOT advocating that you throw yourself down on the ground and pound your fists and feet until you get your own way…

I am just trying to jog your memory a little bit so I can help you remember the tenacity you had as a child.

 Back then…One ‘no’ from someone was simply an invitation to open the conversation.

It was the starting place to getting to where we wanted to go.

 

We got creative and bargained,

We learned how to persuade and convince –

(even if it was just for a nickel to buy a gumball.)

It was a great skill!

So don’t take that ‘no’ so easily.

Remember that NO is quite often the beginning of a relationship, and often ends in a YES if we are patient and positively persistent.

I hope that by now you are starting to remember all the hope and possibility you had as a kid and that it can be found once again.

YOU need to tap back into these traits to do it.

They are still there just waiting for you to remember them.

My latest Mural… “Everyone Needs A Friend”

This weekend I painted a mural for a very special little girl. 

My very own daughter.

The BEST part about this mural was that she actually helped me paint it. She has displayed exceptional talent in the arts since she was two years old. So as you look at the pictures for this mural, keep in mind that she painted every bit from beginning to end on the mane and tail of the brown horse. She is only ten years old, so her talent is pretty incredible.

  IMG_0614                  

Here is what her room looked like when we started.

Plain, boring white walls…

But for me, white walls are just a blank canvas that I can create a whole new world on. 

So bring on the white walls!

  IMG_0616                   The first thing I always do when I am painting a mural is get the background blocked in. Once you have established the position of the background, putting the main image into the painting becomes a whole lot easier.

I used a gray sky  ACE hardware brand paint in semi gloss latex for the sky. For the ground I used the same brand in a Terra cotta color.

  IMG_0619                  

Once you have the background in place you are now ready to draw the main image on the wall.

I like to use a overhead projector to blow the picture up. I will draw out the mural on a plastic paper and then use the machine to project it and make it life size.  This saves me hours of painstaking drawing time. By doing it this way I am able to see exactly where I want the picture to sit on the wall, and know how the entire picture will look BEFORE I ever start drawing.

SO that is my time saving tip for the day

 

Once you have the image sketched on the wall you can begin to color in the picture.

The first layer of paint will be a lot like coloring a page in a coloring book. There won”t really be any detail yet and the image will look very flat and lifeless at first, but don’t get discouraged. As each new layer of paint goes on, the more dimension your picture will acquire.

IMG_0620                       See how flat the horses look right now. That is NORMAL, and shouldn’t discourage you at all. Just keep on painting. It really does get a lot better. IMG_0621                 Here is another angle of the picture. From this angle you can see how that shadow I blocked in under the horses chin is already starting to create some dimension.   IMG_0624                 In this picture you can see how I am starting to add the different shades of color to the horses skin and mane and tail. This simple act of using lighter and darker shades of the same base color will create the look of muscles on the horse, and give movement to the hair on the mane and tails.   IMG_0626                   In this picture, you can see all the little details that I painted in the eye to make it look round and realistic. I also added some white to her face to give her a little bit more personality.   IMG_0627                   We did the same thing with the black mare. We gave her eyes some detail and then extended her mane so it partially covered her eye. We wanted to give the illusion of a thick, bushy mane on the black horse. IMG_0630                   Here is the finished mural. To complete the background I painted the cactus using four different shades of green paint. By doing this I am able to give the illusion of a round object on a flat wall. Then we just added a few ground details and other desert plants to the wall and that completed the painting. This mural took us 10 hrs to complete.

  Here are a few more pictures of the finished mural.            

PURGING takes URGING!!!

As the spring season begins, a naturally occurring phenomenon seems to take place in nearly every home.

SPRING CLEANING!

So today, I am going to include several tips for making life easier this spring.

My job is to clean up after 200 kids every day, and my motto at work is:

Work Smarter.. NOT Harder.

And over the past ten years as a Custodian I have found several ways to make the job easier and today I will share a few with you.

Lets start in the kitchen.

 

BATHROOM: BACTERIA BUSTING!

 

PURGING: This job takes URGING!

I have read that one of the worst things you can do when purging is to touch each object. Experts say this creates attachment and makes it harder to let go of your stuff.

SO how do you PURGE without touching?

You CAN’T!

SO here is how I deal with this issue.

I attack one closet at a time. When the closet is in my kids rooms, I make them stand there with me and we set a timer.

We have 5 minutes to go through their clothes and decide of the are KEEP/TOSS/ or DONATE.

Then we move onto their drawers.

By setting the timer we create urgency and this seems to keep us from reminiscing about the special times in that outfit.

We do the same thing with toys, books, and craft supplies.

So My tip for purging is to set a timer, and once a box or bag is filled up, SEAL IT and don’t ever open it again.

TOSS MEANS TOSS!

AND

DONATE MEANS DONATE!

 

I hope these tips have helped motivate you to get your own house in order this Spring.

I encourage you to use the comment section to share your very own tips on SPRING CLEANING.

Have a GREAT WEEK!

 

 

 

 

 

The STONES in our SOUL

I have been dealing with an issue in my life that involves people who are very close to me.

They are behaving in ways that in my opinion are shameful and embarrassing.

I have allowed myself to become very upset at times over their behavior.

Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation?

If you have, then I think you are really going to enjoy today’s post!

Yesterday, as I was talking with Jeff, I (probably for the first time in weeks) actually heard how I sounded as I was complaining about this situation again.

And I DID NOT like the way I sounded at all!

I sounded very petty and judgmental.

I sounded shallow and mean.

I did what I have learned to do whenever I find myself on the verge of jumping down the rabbit hole.

I took a step back!

I asked myself some deep questions.

Is this situation REALLY any of my business?
Who am I to judge another?
Why is this bothering me so much?

Here are the answers to all of those questions and more:

The only way to be free of troublesome people is to be free of the part of you that’s out looking for trouble!

Freedom WILL come to you the moment you choose to pay more attention to the part of you that is divine than the part of you that is upset.

As long as we have been on this planet, wise teachers have shared great truths about the real cause of the pain in our lives.

And all of them, with little exception have pointed in exactly the opposite direction from where we’ve always tended to look.

According to all the great teachers…

The enemy is not what we think it is.

The real adversary in our lives,

That proverbial thorn in our side that leaves us aching and angry, and then sends us looking for someone to blame,

is not what we have always believed.

It is not something “out there.”

It’s something “in here”: an intimate enemy.

We can each name a hundred things that we think is the enemy, but the enemy is not:

  • a friend who betrays you
  • a shaky economic system
  • a threatening boss
  • some stubborn habit
  • that rude driver
  • a computer that won’t work

These things are all conditions that we must deal with.

But the real enemy is much closer to home.

Everyone senses what that intimate enemy is as soon as he or she hears the expression, “Closer to Home”.
We have all known that self-tormenting voice of defeat that rings loud and clear within our very own minds.

No one is as critical of us as we are of ourselves.

We have all been in a situation where we are being hit from all sides by differing opinions and ideas.

We have all been tossed and turned by those conflicting voices that send us first one way and then another, and finally make us doubt every decision.

No one sabotages our plans and happiness as we, ourselves, do.

No wonder none of our victories are permanent.

Oh, we may have “fixed” that enemy for a time.

Perhaps a heart-to-heart talk eased our anxiety about that relationship,

OR an especially good job done at the office made that employer finally take notice;

,

“fixing” that person outside does

 to “fix” the problem inside.

That unhappy nature, that lies dormant in us all,
is just sitting there waiting,
like a snake ready to strike at the first opportunity to create more drama in our lives.

It has to.

That is the nature of the darker side of our personalities.

I read a story a while back that will help to explain this better.

 

“One day a man was walking around his property when a stone slipped unnoticed inside the sole of his shoe.

The stone was just big enough to set the man slightly off balance, and as he walked across an uneven area of ground, he slipped.

Annoyed, but confident of his actions, the man immediately “fixed” the problem by smoothing out the ground with a rake and shovel, but the stone lodged in his sole continued to cause him a great deal of pain.

Proceeding with his walk, and squinting his eyes against the growing discomfort, he failed to see the low-hanging branch of a tree ahead of him.

Sure enough, he walked right into it and bumped his nose!

Greatly irritated, he “fixed” this new problem by cutting down the tree.

More annoyed than ever, and unable to think clearly because of the now persistent pain, he got angry with his hired man for letting all these dangerous conditions exist in the first place.

The obvious “fix” for this problem was to fire him!

It is clear to us as observers of this man’s story that the way he perceived his situation ensured that there would never be an end to his problems and “fixes.”

Because the problems he “fixed” were only secondary outcomes.

He never addressed the real cause at all.

real problem

 

 

 

 

 

Did this story strike a chord with you?

 

I know it sure did with me!

If we are being really honest we will all have to admit that, just like the man in the story,  we’ve been working very hard to correct conditions in our lives that are really no more than secondary outcomes, and not the real problem at all.

 

We fight a daily war to protect ourselves against enemies that, in fact, never are responsible for the pain we feel.

The resolution of ALL our difficulties lies in correctly identifying…

AND

then eliminating the

“STONE IN OUR SOUL.”

But in order for this to be possible, you must  be willing to embark on a journey of self-discovery that examines many hidden reaches of your being.

You have to uncover the REAL issue that is causing your pain.

Image result for look inside your own heart

In order to find relief from the stone, you need to stop looking outside your “shoe” for the source of the pain.

You are going to have to take the shoe off and uncover the truth.

And sometimes the truth can be stinky!

The Wars we Wage

Today my little ten year old daughter had a situation at school.

 

Since I work at the same school she attends, I am fortunate enough to hear about these situations almost as soon as they happen.

Her teacher came to me and told me that she had been creating a disruption in class and had stubbornly refused to do her work for over an hour.

SO, when the teacher had finally had enough of it, and punished my little one… my little sweet child screamed and began to cry.

The teacher immediately came and found me and told me what had happened.

So TOGETHER, the teacher and I found her in my office crying.

I could see the disappointment on her face when she realized that I was on her teachers side this time…NOT HERS.

So the thing that I wanted to point out by telling this story is the fact that we all seem to WAGE WAR ON OURSELVES from time to time.

And, I have to stop and ask myself WHY DO WE DO THAT?

Several years ago I realized that I was the biggest problem in my life.

 

I was the one who was creating situations for myself that were painful, and that I somehow felt that I deserved that kind of life.

Since then, (THANKFULLY) I have learned to stop WAGING WAR on my own heart.

On a daily basis, I pause, put my hand on my chest and whisper,
“I will not make war against my own heart.”

I have many opportunities to practice, (as I make many mistakes.)

 

Each time, I want to jump on myself.
Each time, I choose: do I judge myself or let it go?

This is an act of courage for me, as it goes against ingrained habits of beating myself up.

But I have come to understand that beating myself up only makes the problem bigger.

This understanding has been an opening for me,

An embracing of all of life;

An embracing of all of me.

It is unconditional love.

It’s not easy.

The mind loves to judge.

To label.

To should all over us – “You shouldn’t have.”

The mind loves to reach for perfection – and that includes self perfection – because it’s trying to find ground, a place where we feel enough.

Our culture teaches that perfection is the key to inner peace.

 

If only we’re spiritual enough,

thin enough,

wealthy enough,

pretty enough,

successful enough…

then, then we’ll arrive.

It is false hope.

One of my favorite quotes is from the poet Danna Faulds.

She says, “Perfection is not a prerequisite for anything but pain.”

To stop the war, we need to learn how to let go.

The first step in letting go is to practice unconditional love – loving ourselves as is.

It is a declaration of self –

I am enough.

Right now.

BUT REMEMBER THIS: It’s not unconditional love if it’s conditional.

So after my daughter had calmed down a little bit, I helped her to understand the many ways that SHE had created the situation in her classroom today.

SHE had made choices that ended up getting her in trouble.

I then reminded her that her decision to misbehave today did NOT mean that she was a bad child. It simply meant that she had mad a bad choice.

I am always reminding my kids to forgive themselves when they make a mistake because if they hold onto that mistake and ruminate about it for days, or weeks, then it becomes a defining moment in their life… and NOT in a good way.

By forgiving ourselves when we make mistakes, we free up the space to LEARN from our choices, and hopefully make different ones in the future.

 

This has been my path to healing 20 years of abuse and self hatred…

Loving myself unconditionally.

This is what I most want for you;

For my children;

For every being.

For years, I hated, blamed, and shamed those tender parts of me that didn’t fit my definition of perfect:

My yo yoing weight,

My preoccupation with my weight,

Money troubles,

Self doubt,

Judgment,

Jealousy;

The way I separate myself from others as a form of self protection….

 

The parts that make me feel like I don’t belong because I’m often trying to keep my head above water when others seem to be swimming laps around me.

And yet something wiser has begun to whisper to me:

 

It is this voice that calls me home:

It is this voice that has taught me these lessons:
Love your tender humanity.
Love your imperfection.
Love your sensitive soul.
No more will I hate you.
No more will I blame you.
I will care for you.
I will hold you kindly.
With this perspective, I hold loosely onto that list of “faults.”
I care for them with wisdom.
And I detach a bit – I’m not the sum of my challenges; nor my mistakes.
Why should I feel ashamed for being human; for needing love and forgiveness like everyone else?

I breathe and let go.

I exhale and feel space.

I come home.

I now KNOW that my heart is big enough.

Swami Kripalu said that each time “we judge ourselves we break our own hearts.”

So just like I told my sweet little daughter today, “Learn from your mistake, but don’t hate yourself for it.

Love yourself enough to make choices that will bring you happiness and honor.”

So this is my vow to myself and one that I would love to share with you…

When the voice of self judgment arises, I forgive it.

I Forgive everything.

Because that is the one and only way to truly find the path to love and stop the WAR against ourselves.

 

Some of my latest projects…

I actually made all of these projects in December but have just not gotten around to posting pictures of them yet.

I figured that I better get them up on my website.

I appreciate the feedback that you always give me when I post the projects that I have made.

This time I am asking for a different kind of feedback however…

I have had a few requests for painting instructions and patterns.

This is where I would really appreciate some feed back…

If I were to feature a project each month, would you be interested in receiving the pattern and painting instructions?

What would you be willing to pay to have them delivered to your mail box each month?

Would you prefer that they arrive in a digital format, or would you prefer to have them mailed to your physical address?

And would you like patterns for my murals and furniture pieces as well?

Thank you for taking the time to respond to these questions. It will help me know how to move forward in the future.

So, as promised….

Here are the projects that I made to give as gifts this year for Christmas 2015.

mint green snowman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made 5 of these door hangers to give to my friends this year.

I made them out of 3/4″ MDF. I cut them out, then hand painted the details on each one.

Next, I added glitter to the snowman’s face for that little extra sparkle that I love.

The final step was to glue on the flower and add some beads to the brim of his hat.

 

recipe holder blocks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The blocks are a fun little neighbor gift that I made using 6″ x 2″ scraps of wood and scrap book paper.

I MODGE PODGED the paper to the blocks.

Then added a burlap ribbon and then I tied the spoon onto the burlap ribbon with a smaller contrasting ribbon.

The last thing I did was I glued on a clip that would hold the recipe card.

These were a big hit!

 

 

 

missionary plaque

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made this one for a co-worker. Her son is on a mission and I wanted to make her something really special to commemorate this once in a lifetime event.

 

 

 

snow man blocks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made these to pass out around my neighborhood. They are just scraps of wood that I have in my shop and I painted them fun colors then painted on the letters and the face and added a snowflake and glitter to the snowman. I made the carrot nose out of foam core board.

 

 

 

These were a simple project that was a really big hit too.

I had so much fun making Christmas projects this year. It is always so much fun for me to find and then make the projects each year.

 

So Once again I want to thank you for taking the time to respond to my questions. 
I want to continue to grow my business and the thought of creating patterns and instructions was not something I had ever considered but thanks to my readers, I am now investigating that possibility.

 

 

 

9 Powerful Insights GUARANTEED to make you HAPPIER…

What if I promised you that I could make you stand out in a crowd?

Or that I could give you a secret formula that would GUARANTEE your success in Love and relationships?

How much would you be willing to pay for that kind of insider information?

Thousands?

Millions?

Well I have great news….

great news

 

Today I am going to give you that kind of powerful information for 

It won’t cost you a penny.

 

I have personally researched each and every insight in the trenches of my very own life.

Every insight I will be sharing with you today has the power to literally transform your life…

you are willing to allow the TRUTH of my words to sink in,
and then
make the necessary adjustments to your thinking that will allow you to integrate these insights into your daily life.

 

So here are the  POWERFUL insights

to make you HAPPIER…

#1: Love is a choice, Attraction ISN’T

What do I mean by that?

It’s simple really…We really don’t have any more control over who you fall for than you do over gravity.

We all suffer from a condition that many refer to as “INSTANT ATTRACTION”,

When the chemical craziness of that first attraction wears off (after days or months or years),

That is when you will finally start to wake up every day, look at the person in your bed and  to be in love with them.

 

You can ALSO choose   to love someone too.

Don’t be a love victim.

I wasted too many years of my life desperately trying to keep a relationship together that I should have just walked away from.

Too many folks stay with men and women who are awful for them because they “love” them or because they’re afraid of “failing”.

You have to love yourself FIRST and sometimes that means walking away.

You get this one life to be happy.

Don’t waste it.

 

#2: “Soulmates” aren’t found, They Are MADE.

There’s no “The One,” there’s dozens… hundreds of men or women out there who would be perfect for you.

Finding “the one” means finding someone wonderful and working together to create something extraordinary.

I honestly believe that my oldest child is my greatest soul mate.

Together we have helped each other grow and develop life skills that alone we would never have understood.

me and tyler 1

 

 

 

So, obviously I also don’t believe that a SOUL MATE has to be a romantic partner.

I believe that a soul mate is a person who helps you become the very best version of yourself.

 

#3: Nobody can make you a victim but you.

I work at an elementary school, so I gets lot’s of kids every day telling me how someone is making them crazy.

 But nobody can “make” you a victim, any more than they can “make” you happy.

So I always take the child aside and explain to them that another persons behavior does NOT have the power to render them helpless to their feelings.

I offer them a few more choices for feelings that the other person’s behavior might cause them besides “CRAZY”,

and once I do that,

the light bulb goes off and they suddenly realize that they can actually CHOOSE how they react to someone else’s bad behavior.

 

# 4: 99.99999% of what people say and do has nothing to do with you.

This has probably been the most difficult insight for me to research for you.

My second husband was a cheater. He had three affairs during our marriage and it took years for me to accept the simple fact that…

Even something as awful as cheating often has nothing to do with me.

People do what they do.

You react how you react.

Your heart is yours and you’re the only one who can make it feel anything.

 

#5: Never apologize for your emotions, but don’t assume that just because you feel something that makes it true and right.

Humans are a lot like crazy animals that evolved from beasts.

Just because you feel something doesn’t mean you have to act on it.

Feel it.

Let it hum through your veins.

Passion is infectious.

Anger is useful.

Pain is meant to teach.

Feel everything as intensely as you can.

And then once you have allowed your feelings to run their course…pull it all back and then make the choice in that particular situation that will make you happy.

 

#6: Great relationships are about forgiveness.

Forgive yourself for being human.

Forgive the people who share your life for being human too.

NOBODY is perfect and you wouldn’t like it if you were anyway.

(Think about it…What would a perfect person want with someone as imperfect as you?)

We don’t change as we get older, we just become more who we really are.

Accept that.

Love the changes.

Laugh about them.

Then go out and share your wisdom.

#7: What you love about your partner is often what drives you nuts about them too.

My husband Jeff is laid back, incredibly chill to be around. He is an extreme introvert.

I love that he lets me shine in crowds because I am an extrovert.

But sometimes, when I want him to talk and help me with a conversation…

He just quietly sits there smiling at me.

So I while I do love his quiet nature, Sometimes it also drives me nuts.

#8: Care less. Love more.

There’s only so much room in your heart for causes and passions and even people.

So I have learned the value of Picking a few.

Loving them with intensity.

And then letting the rest take care of themselves.

This had freed up so much space in my life for the people and causes that I feel really passionate about, and that has made my live GLORIOUS!

#9: Spend time each day with God.

In His eyes you are perfect just the way you are, and I have found that when I spend time with people who can accept me exactly the way I am, and ask nothing of me but that I love them…

I want to be a better person.

I want to live a life that is worthy of that kind of devotion.

I will NEVER meet another person who gave me as much and has asked so little in return as my Savior has done for me.

So the highlight of my day is to spend time in prayer thanking Him for his unconditional love and acceptance, and asking Him to teach me how to be more like HIM.

 

So there you have it…

My 9 POWERFUL Insights that will GUARANTEE your HAPPINESS.

I pray that you will find the joy that I have by integrating these insights into my daily life.

GOD BLESS!

The Wonder of Motherhood

Let’s be like a child for a moment and pretend that we have just enrolled in a very special and unique classroom.

 

 This classroom is where we will learn lessons that will transform us in ways we cannot possibly comprehend.

Are you ready to explore learning in a whole new way?

No tests?

No lists?

No meaningless homework?

In this classroom there will  always be an opportunity for one more chance.

In this classroom you never have to experience failure because you are allowed to proceed at your very own pace, and your mistakes are forgiven by a loving and kind teacher.

 

Would you agree to attend a school where there was no tuition, no commuting,

no schedules,

no degree requirements?

What if at this school you could enjoy recess all day long if you wanted and the teacher played and celebrated right along side of you?

In this special school, the teacher is fun and forgiving.

And in her classroom you can look into her eyes and find love and acceptance unmatched by any other guide on Earth?

This classroom is a learning space where you can let your spirit soar.

You are not required to stay quiet.

Your ideas and feelings and needs count.

You can laugh and sing and dance and love as much as you want.

You have probably already guessed that the classroom is called “MOTHERHOOD”,

You are the student…

AND

Your child is the teacher.

That is why it is such a loving and safe place for you to be in.

BUT…

Heed this warning all you who enter this classroom…

This is not a classroom for the faint of heart or spirit.

It is a place with a few very strict requirements –

ones that will involve courage,

risk-taking,

painful discoveries,

healing,

forgiveness,

change,

tears,

messes,

and smells,

bruises,

and, yes,

even some sleepless nights.

In order to learn the lessons that are being taught in this classroom you need to be willing to take full responsibility for yourself.

You have to be willing to open up to new ideas and patterns.

Because when you enter the classroom of MOTHERHOOD you are embarking on a journey where there is NO TURNING BACK even when the destination is so terrifying that you don’t know how you will survive it.

So while this can be a tough classroom, if you are willing to keep your eyes, ears, and hearts wide open your teacher will show you how to dance as if nobody is watching.

To work as if you don’t need the money.

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And to love as if you have never been hurt.

Children, whether our own or those we encounter along our way, create an exhilarating new opportunity for our own transformations.

They are one of the greatest factors in our own personal growth.

They offer us the chance to learn the lessons we missed before in our lives.

They show us how to live, love, play and forgive.

Their marvelous sense of wonder and sheer excitement in living reminds us to look at each new day, every single minute with a renewed sense of enthusiasm.

Their innate sense of love and compassion and acceptance inspire us to engage with life at new and deeper levels.

Their love of learning and their courage to keep trying despite any setback, or supposed failure, encourages us to keep asking, keep daring, and to always take one more step forward in the direction of our goals.

Their natural instincts allow them to easily forgive. When I see the forgiving nature of my children it reminds me that I too need to learn to let go of my old patterns and old grievances.

I love the sheer magic that you can see in their sparkling eyes. Their true essence gives me every reason I need to greet each and every day as another peek inside the magic and mystery of life.

By responding to the opportunities that children provide, we learn anew how to reengage in life.

We are reminded how easy it really is to get un-stuck from our monotonous patterns where we do the same things, in the same way every day.

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They show us how to move on from a mistake and how to not repeat old miseries that have been keeping us from realizing our hopes and dreams.

This has been especially true when I talk to my own mother about her beloved grandchildren.

mom

 

 

 

 

She seems to understand better than I ever could just how precious a child really is.

She has told me that with each new grandchild that has been added to her family she has seen a new opportunity to reengage with the divine spark of life.

They bring the sense of unconditional love straight from Heaven into our homes and give us a second chance to make things right in our own lives.

 

 

Children give us one of the most precious gifts we can ever receive –

An invitation to learn and grow and bloom ourselves in a classroom unlike any other we have ever known.

So if MOTHERHOOD is a classroom…

How important is it to learn the lessons that our children are teaching us?

 

 

Do this: And watch your DREAMS begin to become your reality.

Dare to dream.

Dream the details.

Imagine the day when your dream comes true.

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The next step in making your dreams a reality is to:

Surround yourself with people who support your dream.

 

In turn, support them in their dreams.

In this way, you will succeed.

 

Once you have learned how to dream BIG, and have found a dependable, supportive group of people…

The NEXT step on the road  is to:

Be willing to sacrifice, and be willing to walk away from those who criticize or distract.

Of all the lessons I have learned in life, this one was BY FAR the HARDEST to implement.

I am a “rescuer”. I love to help those who are in need. And there is nothing wrong with that trait…

IF

You have the proper boundaries in place that will allow you to walk away from those needy people who are just there to “TAKE”, and don’t actually WANT any help because they actually like living in CRISIS MODE.

It took me over thirty years to learn the difference.

But I CANNOT overstate the importance of learning to tell the difference between a person who is WANTING your help, and a person who DOESN’T.

When you find yourself in a relationship of any kind with the kind of person who LIVES FOR CRISIS….

RUN AWAY! As far and as fast as you possibly can.

run away

 

 

 

 

 

They will derail your dreams faster that a speeding bullet train.

 

So… here is the next thing you need to do if you want to make your dreams become your reality.

Always Be Generous and Loving in your pursuits.

Lift others up because you know that your biggest assets in this journey are the love and support of those around you.

Let go of anyone who tries to hold you back.
Do not judge, and do not allow yourself to be judged.
Keep your eyes on the prize.
It doesn’t matter whether people understand your intentions.
It doesn’t matter if you fail in your first attempts.
Because, I can almost guarantee that You WILL fail in your first attempts, but that is okay, it is in the failures that you learn to succeed.

The journey will be full of unexpected turns and amazing adventures.

My favorite example of this is my fourth child. She is a miracle.

I had my tubes tied after my third pregnancy, and so therefore thought my child bearing days were over.

Imagine my surprise when I found out that I was going to add one more child to my family.

I was advised to end the pregnancy due to some health complications, but I refused to even consider ending the pregnancy. 

I carried the baby to term and delivered a healthy baby girl with very little complications at all.

She will be turning ten years old tomorrow, and I honestly cannot imagine what life would have been like without her.

She has been one of the GREATEST ADVENTURES of my life.

Sarah loves the Farm Life too.

Sarah loves the Farm Life too.

 

 

 

 

 

Being her mother has taught me to embrace the unexpected changes that life brings us because it is inside those “SURPRISES” that the true beauty of life lies.

 

Take time to thoroughly enjoy achievements along the way.

Always REMEMBER that:

The biggest dreams are full of the

biggest joys,

the deepest disappointments

and the most adversity.

I have always held onto the dream that I would someday experience REAL LOVE.

That before I died, I would know what it felt like to be loved unconditionally by a man.

But before I could appreciate the gift of love, I needed to feel the heartbreak of betrayal.

Jeff is a Dream come true, and because of the abuse and betrayal in my past, I will NEVER take him for granted.

me and jeff

 

 

 

SO don’t let the heartbreaks and disappointments that life has in store for you make you give up on your dreams. Just know that a dream worth dreaming is also worth fighting for.

But I think that the BEST advice I can give you on making your dreams a reality is: Keep an unrelenting focus on your goals.

The word  is a verb.

It is an act that starts with a single thought.

It’s not something that happens to you.

It’s not a story you can watch play out on its own.

It is not a description of something attained by a

It’s not a  for being in the right place at the right time.

Dreaming requires your active participation.

Plan for success.

Structure that single thought in a unique way that describes joy, contentment, peace, happiness and success for you on a very personal level.

Nurture and feed that thought so it can grow.

Chance opportunities will present themselves, but don’t rely on chance.

Rather, be prepared to forge ahead when doors open for you.

If you dare to dream, be tenacious in pursuit of that dream.

Invest yourself heart and soul.

Even before you reach your goals, you will inspire people to set their own.

With every challenge that knocks you down, people will see you as a example when you get back up and soldier on.

If you want to change the world in a positive way, dream with passion.

See the path to the finish line as your life’s journey.

And when one dream ends, celebrate and start a new one.

Show us how it’s done.

Simply, dream.

Do it.