How to Slow Down and Enjoy the Holiday Season

How to Slow Down and Enjoy the Holiday Season
Do you feel like the holiday season comes and goes with a whirlwind; leaving you exhausted and wishing for a do-over. You do not have to feel that way.  Come read about how you can slow down and enjoy the holiday season this year.  

How to Set Priorities to Begin to Organize your Life

How to Set Priorities to Begin to Organize your Life
This is the first post in a series all about creating harmony in your home with routines and rhythms.  I wanted to create this for you because one of the biggest concerns I hear from moms all the time is that they do not know how to manage their day.  They feel overwhelmed by all the tasks they have to get done and if they work from home or homeschool then they are not even sure how to get it all in.  Not to mention having time to do something for yourself.

Do you ever feel like this? Do you feel like your life is out of harmony? I didn't use the word balance here because this is near impossible in my opinion. I do believe you can create harmony in your home and that is just what I have worked over the years to create.

For years I was overwhelmed, consumed by the daily tasks and not knowing how to manage my time.  The days felt unorganized and by the end of it I was exhausted mentally and physically.  Does any of this sound familiar to you?  Maybe you aren't overwhelmed and you are managing your time but you don't have any time left for yourself or the things that you love to do.  I figured out a way to get my daily tasks done, work from home, homeschool and still have time for myself. 

Priorities are Where it's At!
It all started with me asking myself some questions.  I believe the first step to creating harmony is figuring out your priorities. Grab yourself a tea, coffee or one of my recipes for a yum, caffeine free drink here and ask yourself what is most important to you in life.  Think big picture first.  Pick at least 5 priorities that you are not willing to negotiate.  List those out on a piece of paper in order of importance with some space between each one.
Some question you might ask yourself are:
What do I want the focus of my day to be around?
Who do I want to serve daily?
What can I do each day that will bring my home joy?
How do I want to feel each day?

Once you have gotten your 5 priorities listed out, then you can begin to fill in some of the key goals for each one that will help you stay focused on that each day.  For example, if one of your priorities is family, what are you going to do for your family that keeps this in check?   I homeschool so that would go under this category.  Make sense? Maybe wellness is one of your top priorities right now, so you write down cook healthy meals.

It's not enough to just write down your top 5 priorities.  That will leave you still feeling uncertain about what you need to be doing each day to stay focused on these and keep them in check. You can get as specific as you want but what I wouldn't do is write down so many goals that you are right back where you started feeling like you will not be able to harmonize it all.

My Priorities
I will tell you mine but not so that you can compare or feel like these have to be yours.  I will share mine because having an example has always helped me move forward and brainstorm my ideas.


Some of my goals under these are time with the Lord and prayer, homeschooling, self-care, cooking healthy meals, exercise, dancing and going on dates with my hubby. 
Your goals do not have to happen everyday but there will be some that do and these become your ultimate non-negotiables.  In time you will find that the ones that seem to be extra will begin to fall into harmony with your routines and rhythms.  

So get started with this today.  I know it's going to make a difference in how you see your day first of all.  This is the first step to creating harmony in your home and a rhythm that works for you and not the other way around.  

Get my printable priorities print out here.  Are you going to start working on this today? Are you ready to start getting your day back?

Do you want to come hang out with some other moms working toward joy and releasing the overwhelm?
Join here!

Easy Apple Pie to Bake with Kids and Teach a Lesson!

Easy Apple Pie to Bake with Kids and Teach a Lesson!
Easy Apple Pie Lesson and Delicious for the Fall Season
I'm so into Fall right now! What about you? This week my youngest had a unit with his home school curriculum all about "apples for a".  I love teaching the letters with a theme.  It's fun, easy, cohesive and it solidifies it for little ones; especially the kinesthetic, tactile learners. So when it suggested to bake an apple pie we were both all in. Not only that, there was a book to go along with the lesson and I love that! 

"A for Apple"
The book we read was How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World by Marjorie Priceman. This is the cutest book about a little girl who wants to bake an apple pie but the market is closed.  So she heads out on an adventure all over the world to get her ingredients.  So not only is this book great for a reading lesson; it covers so much more, including geography.  Start by looking at the cover with your kiddo first and making some predictions.  Then as you read; ask questions all throughout.  This helps them with comprehension and shows them it's great to ask questions while you are reading.  You could get a globe or map and follow along with her adventure.  There is also one in the front of the book to look at together.  This also puts it in perspective for them where our ingredients come from.  

Now to Make an Easy Apple Pie
First of all making your own crust can seem intimidating but it's really minimal ingredients and pretty simple.  If you don't want to make the crust, totally just buy a store bought one.  I prefer the ones in the refrigerated section when I do this. They tend to be more yummy!  My favorite is Immaculate Bakery.  

2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup shortening (this is the best and better for you)
8-10 Tbls cold water 
1 egg yolk (to use for an egg wash after filling the pie)

1.Start with level measured scoops of flour and whisk the salt in medium sized bowl.
2. Cut in 2/3 cup of shortening until it looks like little peas are in the flour (you can use two knives or this tool I love for this)
3. Add 1 Tbls of water at a time to one area and mix with a fork until moist.  Do this with sections until the dough is coming together.  Do not overmix.  You will still see some crumbs.  
4. Divide the dough in half.
5. Put each half onto a floured surface and shape into a round disk.  Put in fridge wrapped up to chill for a bit while you make filling. 

5-7 apples
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
2 Tbls butter
2 Tbls flour or arrowroot powder
Preheat oven to 425.  
1. Peel and cut the apples into 1/4 inch slices.  If you cut them too thick, they won't soften.  If you cut them too thin, they will get mushy
2. Mix together sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and flour or arrowroot powder in medium sized bowl.
3. Add the apples and toss to coat.  Let them sit about 5 minutes.
4. Grease a pie plate (this is my favorite) with butter or shortening.
5. Roll out the first disk of crust to fit pie dish.  Use roller to lift it and put into the pie dish.  
6. Pour the filling in.  Mound the apples to the center a bit.
7. Roll out the other crust and lay it over the top.  Cut excess off.  Crimp the two crusts together to seal closed.
8. Cut a few slits in the top of the pie to let steam out.
9.  Make an egg wash with 1 egg yolk and 1 Tbls of water.  Brush over the top of the crust.  
10. Bake in a 425 oven for about 30-40 minutes.  Reduce oven to 350 and put the pie dish on a baking sheet.  Bake for about 20 more minutes.  Check to see if the crust is golden brown and put a knife in one of the slits to see if the apples are tender.  You will see steam coming out of the slits and the filling will be bubbling when it's done.  

Baking with Kids is Worth the Effort and Time
This is a fun activity to do with any age.  My eleven year old was even helping.  Cooking with kids helps them learn life skills, math, science and reading all in one.  Plus it helps create a kitchen environment that is full of love.  You are making memories with them that will last a life time.  

I love making our home a place where the kids want to be and giving them experiences that create warmth.  Plus smelling the apple pie bake in the house will not disappoint.  
Have you made apple pie before?  What is your favorite pie?

By the way, come hang out here with other moms hashing out this parenting gig here.  

“Moon Cake”

“Moon Cake”
Moon Cake
Does your child learn through movement and tactile activities? My youngest so does.

Cooking with your kids is such an easy and fun way to learn. Plus this is a fun Friday activity.

Moon Cake 🌕

Bake a round cake to show the “full moon”. 🌕When you are ready to eat, cut it in half for the “half moon”. 🌗Later cut so a “crescent moon” remains. 🌘Finally, eat it all to represent the “new moon.” 🌑

Grease a 9” round cake pan. Preheat oven to 350. Mix “moon sand” right in the pan:

1 1/2 cup organic flour
1/2 cup organic cane white sugar
1/2 cup organic brown sugar
1 tsp salt I like this one...

Form 3 craters in the moon- one large, one medium and one small.

Add 5 Tbsp. oil (I use 
Thrive in comments) to the large crater.

Add 1 tsp baking soda to the medium crater.

Add 1 tsp vanilla to the small crater.

Pour 1 Tbsp. vinegar into the medium crater and watch it bubble like a volcano. When the volcano stops, add 1 cup of milk. Mix everything together to form the moon’s surface.

Optional: add 3/4 cup chocolate chips (moon rocks) into the batter.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. When cool, sprinkle with powered sugar (moon dust).
Do you cook with your kids? 🧑‍🍳👩‍🍳

For more recipes and homeschool info join other women making this parenting thing work 

By the way you can grab my free guide for a month of dinner ideas here.

This recipe was adapted from My Father’s World curriculum.

Make Mondays Great Again with these Motivational Tips!

Make Mondays Great Again with these Motivational Tips!
Are you ready to take your Mondays back?

I used to dread Mondays.  Like I literally would get all down and out on Sunday night waiting for Monday to roll around. Then I decided to take my Mondays back. Read to the bottom for some recipes that have helped me with Monday motivation and to get good sleep on Sunday night. Here's what I started doing...

Start by Resting on Sundays for Mondays to be Great Again.
I'm serious!  This may sound counterproductive but I found that when our family started resting, playing and taking Sundays as a true Sabbath, Mondays didn't seem so bad anymore.  We read, play games, take walks to a local coffee shop, hang outside, spend time with the Lord and just do what we love to do. I often do yoga or bake in the morning.  Every Sunday looks different except for our time with the Lord.  That stays consistent and a top priority.  

Set Yourself up Sunday night for Monday Morning Success.
I fill up all the diffusers with motivational blends to turn right on in the morning.
I make the coffee and set it up to start automatically.
I look through my planner for the week ahead.
Put my oils on to get the best sleep possible.  
I try to read something at bedtime that inspires me for the week ahead. It's usually about faith, being a leader or home schooling.

Wake up to Motivational Mindfulness.
When I wake up I go straight to my devotions.  Right now I'm using the YouVersion Bible app.  
I say a prayer to start the day and rejoice with the Lord in the day He has made.  

Make Mondays Great Again by Taking it Slow.
I know, sounds totally undo-able and it might be for you right now.  I'm not sure what season you are in.  When I started staying home with my kids and began to see the idea of time freedom from working from home, I decided to take Mondays slow.  This means we do not have a lot on the schedule. I do not run errands. I don't try to do all the things in one day.  I look at the week ahead and make sure I have a good handle on what's going down.  

You might say I changed a Sunday well spent brings a weeks content to a Monday well spent!

Oh and by the way here are some of my favorite morning blends to put in the diffuser to get going:
Power Hour
4 drops Motivation
2 drops Peppermint

Rise and Shine
3 drops Lemon
3 drops Valor
2 drops Lime

Here are my favorite sleepy oils:
Rutavala Roll On
Stress Away
Ylang Ylang

Ready to start using oils, grab them here. It matters what you use. The quality will make a difference on how it works.

We only get one chance to live in peace and joy.  I wasted many years not doing that.  So I'm here for it now.  I will do what it takes to manifest that and give that to my children.  

Comment below what you think about Mondays. 

Want to come hang with some other women trying to take Mondays back and bring back peace into their homes, join here!  We want you there!  

By the way, want some more tips on how to live a healthy lifestyle without all the overwhelm, go here!

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