3 Ingredients to Epic Mornings 

This sums it all up…

How do you like to start your mornings?

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Personal Spa Time

Another week is winding down. I always look forward to my Day of Rest. 

Time to rest, reflect, renew, and rejuvenate is crucial. And I am so glad I embraced this concept years ago. It has been one of the best things I have ever done for myself (and others!).

I am selective in what I put on my skin amd these have become some of my favorite Personal Spa Time products! 

——> Pictured here:
*ROSE HAND LOTION–> light & alluring with Rose essential oil (known to promote smooth, glowing skin) and sunflower & macadamia seed oils (known for their exceptional moisturizing properties! Plus, the FULL purchase price goes to the Healing Hands Foundation to empower impoverished communities!

*REFRESHING BODY WASH–> natural, oil-infused, providing rich cleansing experience. Infused with Bergamot (purifies & soothes skin), Grapefruit (cleansing to skin), & Cedarwood (promotes relaxation). Sulfate FREE. ❤ 

*EXFOLIATING BODY SCRUB–> natural & gently exfoliates & polishes the skin. Leaves skin feeling so soft! Infused with Wild Orange & Grapefruit (cleanse & purify skin), Ginger (soothing & warming), sunflower oil (smooth & soften), sweet almond oil (moisturizing & smoothing), & kukui nut oil (soothes & moisturizes with no greasy after-feel)

*REPLENISHING BODY BUTTER–> Rich hydration! Infused with Wild Orange (purifying benefits), Douglas Fir (purifying benefits & uplifting aromatic benefits), Frankincense (rejuvenating & balancing), shea butter (deeply moisturizing), cocoa seed butter (soothing & nourishing), jojoba (moisturizing, hydrating, & softening), avocado oil (promotes healthy & moisturized skin)

*DETOXIFYING MUD MASK–> natural clay mask that provides purifying & detoxifying benefits while reducing the appearance of pores, fine lines, & wrinkles! Infused with Myrrh, Juniper Berry, & Grapefruit (known for their cleansing & purifying benefits)!

Have you tried any of these spa products? If so, what do you love? If not,  what are you eager to try?

Happy pampering!

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They Reach for the Stars

I love homeschooling.

We’ve been doing it for about 18 years.

Is it “easy”? Not, necessarily. Although it’s not as difficult as one might think.

Do we do it perfectly after 18 years? Bwa ha ha. No way.

Seasons in life change… and we simply adjust accordingly.

But one of the foundational reasons that I love educating them at home is that they are able to pursue the things that interest them.

I am a strong believer that our interests and passions are no accident. I believe that, often times, they are actually part of our purpose and mission in life.

I love that they have the freedom to run after their interests, chase their dreams, and reach for the stars.

starrynight

As our son finishes up his last year of “high school”, he continues to pursue the things he loves, as he discovers his purpose. One of those things is creating music.

In a digital world, it’s amazing what is available at a dreamer’s fingertips.

Recently, our son finished his first official song… a great accomplishment.

He imagined being out on a clear night, watching the stars dance by, when he put this song together.

And this proud mama is sharing …

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When Grief is Hard to Bear…

beachbench1watermark

 A couple of weeks ago was the two year anniversary of Mama’s passing.
A couple of weeks before that, was the one year anniversary of Daddy’s.

The day before the anniversary of when Mama left (what is that day called anyway? Passawayversary? Leftusversary? Saddestdayofmylifeversary? I don’t know) … I found myself at one of my favorite spots… the ocean… my “happy place”.

The exact location was both a happy place and a sad one.
It was where we had taken Mama and Daddy one day. It was their first time to the ocean since they had moved in with us. Neither of them could actually go onto the beach because it was too difficult with Mama’s walker and with Daddy’s cane and prosthetic leg… but they sat at this bench… at this exact spot… and stood by these rails… savoring the salt air, the vastness of the great ocean, and the voices and sight of their grandchildren (whom had always lived so far away but had now shared a home with).

I wonder what thoughts… what contemplations… what emotions…
blew in with the sea air.
I remember they had looked so contented… more than that in certain moments and perhaps even less than that in others. What an ocean of thoughts and emotions that can sweep over us by simply sitting at the beach.

I’m not sure how to describe what I felt as I sat on the same bench that Mama once sat at… and put my toes in the sand where she, too, enjoyed the softness of the sand… to see the railing where Daddy stood and stared off into the vastness of the ocean, taking it all in. We all thought they would still be here now.

I remember watching them. Their lives were so hard – I won’t share details but they were warriors… and to give them the ocean was one small thing we could do to add to the joy in their lives. My heart filled with gratitude… and a melancholy too.

They both left so suddenly. And only 11 months apart. How does that happen?
After living hundreds – sometimes thousands – of miles away… to Mama and Daddy sharing our home with us… to being an adult orphan.
And they were so young… only 58 and 59… and so was I… and my sister and brother… and our children.

My relationship with them was a good one. Praise Yah!
In fact, Mama was my best friend.
Why did God think I didn’t need her anymore? Or Daddy?

Recently, I really struggled with feeling angry and alone.
Angry at people… friends… family. I needed my mama. I needed my daddy.
I needed the one who loved me no matter what – who I could call and cry to and share all of the ugly things I was thinking… and wouldn’t think any less of me or love me any less… who was my cheerleader… my support system… the one who always believed in me even when I didn’t believe in myself… the one who told me everything would be okay…

I sat and listened to the waves crash as the salt air swept over me… and my eyes, once again, began to leak.

And I hear something…
a still small voice… HIS still small voice…
and I feel Him envelope me in a blanket of understanding, of compassion, of comfort, of peace, and of love.

“I know you miss them.”, He whispers, “I know life is harder in many ways now that they are with Me.”

“My dear, precious daughter… I AM.
I AM all of those things to and for you. I love you no matter what.
You can call and cry to Me all of the ugly things you feel and think
and I will think no less of you.
I AM your biggest cheerleader and support system.
I believe in you… always.
Everything WILL be okay and I AM working all things for good in your life.
And I will NEVER leave you. I AM with you, in you, around you… always.
You are NOT alone… You are not ALONE… YOU are NOT alone.
Your daddy and mama are with Me and at rest.
And you are not alone…
my brave and cherished daughter.
Never alone.”

HalleluYah \0/

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Tea and Persuasion 

Sigh. Be still my heart.

I watched this today, as it had been a long while since my last viewing.

And on a cool, autumn-like day, it was the perfect time to watch it.
It is an absolute FAVORITE!

What is your favorite Jane Austen film?

 

 

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Oh, to be Wild and Free!

I don’t know about you but I, too often, find myself lost in the whirlwind of life… not that being a wife, homeschooler, mompreneur, friend, sisterhood tribe facilitator, woman, and the hundreds of other hats that many of us wear could, at all, be categorized as a whirlwind… ever. *insert sarcastic laugh* *snort*

Well, in that whirlwind I find that many of those beautiful, simple things that I value and desire to do tend to drop by the wayside. I have to be intentional and purposeful in prioritizing those things… an ongoing process.

my3

Taking time to do nature study is one of those things that I adore but, for too many years (yes, years), has fallen to the sidelines. Last Fall, I discovered a community that shares a love for nature, beauty, simplicity, and community. I even attended a retreat that they were having semi-local to me and I fell in love with this growing group of people, as my heart was connected to their hearts. This community was Wild & Free. <– check it out!

After being inspired and recharged, I was eager to start a group local to me! And after a mere 9 months (*insert sarcastic laugh, again*), we have begun! 🙂

caro_explore&amp;sketch

beth_explore&amp;sketch

Today was our first gathering and it was wonderful to see the interest and interaction of the children and the moms!

 

It was simple, informal, and natural. We explored, noticed beautiful and curious things, shared our findings, sketched some of them, and even explored more before running off to play at the playground. It was time well spent and it was a delight to see how relationships were being formed … with each other, with nature, and with learning.

sketchcollage_triopeeps

sketchcollage_caro

I may have mentioned this in the past 18 years of doing it but it’s worth repeating…

I love homeschooling.

 

…Oh! And no bug bites. Yep. Lovin’ our oils!

 

 

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For the Love of Shoe Pajamas… I Miss Mama

It’s past midnight here…

which means it’s August 19th…

the day my mama was born…

and all week I’ve been really struggling with missing her…

almost like the loss is even more fresh than when it happened.

Grief is a funny thing. …

so what’s with the shot of these cool pajama bottoms??
These were mama’s. She wore them often.

Now I do.

I wish I could see her sitting around the house in them again.

I wish I could hug her… hold her…kiss her goodnight and tell her again that I’m so glad she’s my mama.

She was too young. And it’s not fair.

And yet… it is reality.

And we endure a lifetime adjusting without her. ♡

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