Wednesday, April 2, 2014

5 Things for Me - Week 1

This week's theme is "Finding my calm" and is inspired by Laura Crawford - you can read more about the concept here.

I'm rather liking this theme and while I'm late to join the party (you know since it's Wednesday already and I'm barely writing this!) it is one I couldn't pass up because I'm been feeling stressed lately.

So the 5 things I'm doing for me this week to find my calm are:

1. Skip doing the dishes for Monday and Tuesday. I don't usually skip the dishes two days in a row, but Mondays and Tuesdays are my busiest days and it took a load off to turn my back to the sink piled high and know they'll be there later. What kind of inspired this was last week I just got overly busy and my husband finally just did the dishes one night when I was out! Hmmm. Not a bad idea, right? So, this morning (Wednesday) I really couldn't let it go any further and did load up the dishwasher. There were still dishes in the sink. They'll be there for me tomorrow, I'm sure.

2. Facial. That was easy because I have 2 scheduled each month in my calendar. I highly recommend it! I followed this regiment all of last year and it has helped me to take better care of my skin. When you pass the age of 30 you begin worrying about these things more. I saw Karen at Firefly Wellness yesterday and she made my dry skin feel happy again!

3. Massage. Another one that was easy because Elements in Carmel Mountain Ranch called to remind me that I have two massages on the books to use. So, I went this morning and the while it was not one of those relaxing massages, it helped get a LOT of the tension out of my neck. I specifically requested for the focus to be just on my neck, shoulders and back for the full 55 minutes and it sure did help!

4. Start WALKING! This seems like such an easy thing, but ever since I said it out loud last Wednesday to my mastermind group, I've been still ignoring the early sunrise and trying to bury my head in my pillow. I want to get up and go for a 15 minute walk each day as part of my morning routine before the kids wake up. It is going to happen!

5. Get my green juice. I've been doing this each Saturday for the last couple of weeks. So while it is not new, I feel really good about what I'm putting in my body which helps my overall calm. Jamba Juice has a new menu of juice options - which makes this a breeze because I'm always fearful I'll waste all the produce and not follow through at home even though I have a Vitamix!

6. Totally adding one! You know since the first 3 were already accomplished it just seems like a good idea. Get back to my #Gratitude365 blog that has been neglected for an entire MONTH! I think there were days where I had a lot to write, and while that helped me continue to practice my writing and that in turn began to spark some other great content for my Sign4Baby business, I was beginning to feel overwhelmed with it. I think I've continued to be mindful of having gratitude, but it is not the same while not writing everyday for that series.... so I'm getting back to it!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Crushing On You Maggie Unzueta

My favorite recipe creator, Maggie Unzueta.

Every so often I head over to Maggie's profile to check out what her latest creation is. More often though I find her choosing to share the other awesome foodies of G+. She has been more of a giver than a taker, a true engager and continues the journey of learning. It is because of these attributes that I am eager to share her work with you.

Find her recipe books here.

Take a look at this recipe from "In Mama Maggies's Kitchen" for tonight's dinner: Steak Salad with low calorie Blue Cheese Dressing 

Add Maggie to your foodie circle and you will be very glad you did! She shares her favorite wines on Wine Wednesday, keeps up with all the exciting food and drink related events in San Diego and she will introduce you to more amazing foodies!

I just enjoy looking at her images when she shares a new recipe post. Her photos tell the story of her kitchen quite well.

H/T +Jason Frasca for the awesome image and helping create the fun concept where we pay it forward to one of our Google crushes. There's no rules, other than to have fun!

Here is my post on G+ highlighting Maggie.

#CrushingOnYou #payitforward

Saturday, March 1, 2014

#Gratitude365 Day 68

#Gratitude365 February 24 2014

Gratitude for car dancing moments - this one is inspired by one of my Google+ friends, Tracie VanBuren.

Every time I start a new session of classes I feel happy. I get a surge of new inspiration from meeting new people who are being exposed to baby sign language for the first time. Seeing the babies faces filled first with curiosity, then happiness because they begin to predict what it is I will do and that starts the chain reaction to their learning. Soon their faces are filled with understanding because they are effectively communicating. So of course I feel happy every time I begin a new series of classes!

After class today I stopped and got my coffee and while at the traffic light the song "Happy" by Pharrell Williams came on the radio. Instantly I turned up the volume and started car dancing! I love car dancing, but I had never been inspired by this song to sing out loud and dance until today. It's all about our context. It was just the day before that I saw the Mastercard commercial where a preschool teacher is surprised by the artist Pharrell Williams when she turns on "Happy" for a class dance party. This teacher had such a beautiful way of being open, loving and having fun.... all the things that make up HAPPY! It was so joyful to see her reaction to Pharrell walking in and begin dancing! You really must see it:

 It was only after this YouTube video that was shared by Tracie VanBuren that I saw (or paid attention to?) the commercial where JT surprises his biggest fan for a priceless Mastercard moment. Personally, I like the Pharrell Williams YouTube video much better!

What songs make you break out in dance?

Friday, February 28, 2014

#Gratitude365 Day 67

#Gratitude365 February 23 2014

Hubby coming home! His hug. His laugh. His snore. It was only 4 days he was gone. But those things are always missed. I think we need to have opportunities to miss those we love most in order to fully get present to not to take any of it for granted. Maybe I'm coming to this conclusion based onthe circumstances of my husband's out of town trip. His grandfather was diagnosed with cancer in November. They are not sure how much longer he will be here to enjoy the people he loves most. I'm grateful that my husband had this opportunity to go out and have this visit with someone who is clearly important to him both as a child and now as  an adult.

When is the last time you were reunited with a loved one?

#Gratitude365 Day 66

#Gratitude365 February 22, 2014

I'm grateful for softball practice today. If it weren't for Amberly having softball practice, we would not have left the house at all. The boys got to play with some other siblings that were at the practice and had a good time playing something new type of TAG. I get so much enjoyment watching my kids play with others nicely. Those are the little moments that we need to just observe, take a mental picture and remember the seemiingly unimportant events that show you that indeed you're not failing at motherhood.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

#Gratitude365 Day 65

#Gratitude365 February 21 2014

Do you ever have days where you get a "feel good message" from someone and it is just the kind of thing that lights the path?

That happens to me from time to time and I enjoy every single one of them. Sometimes it is a message from someone who took my class several months ago and they want to drop me a line giving me an update on their progress. Other times it is someone who moved far away and their baby is now a preschooler and they are still fascinated by how signing plays such a great role in their family's communication effectiveness. And then once in a blue moon I get a message from someone I've never met who has found either my Sign4Baby blog or youtube channel online and wants to let me know they can see I'm making a difference for people and just want to cheer me on.

It was that last type of message I got today.

I just want to pause and give gratitude for people who take the time to reach out and let someone know what you think of them. Maybe that is a family member, a colleague, a stranger, a small business owner, a teacher and the list goes on... It is really meaningful to the recipient to hear words of encouragement and power through times where challenges present themselves or can give them just the recharging they need to take action on their next big idea. I love it when people are awesome.

When is the last time you thought about how awesome someone is and sent them a message expressing just that? I encourage you to do it. You'll feel good and make someone else feel good.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

#Gratitude365 Day 64 (Part 2) HOA Inspires Action

#Gratitude 365 February 20 2014

Yes, I had something else of great importance to write about that I needed to dedicate a separate blog post to it. This is the first time I've done that in this series, but it was necessary.

One of my friends on Google+ co-hosts an HOA (Hangouts On Air) called Legally Speaking. I hadn't tuned in as of yet because the law doesn't interest me. However they had a couple of guests whom I have circled on Google+ and thought to myself "I'm gonna watch and give some support to 4 friends all at once." Not really thinking that I would be too interested. I couldn't watch live because the timing doesn't work out for me, but that is what is so great about HOAs, the ability to watch them later. Well, watch later I did. Three days later. Ooops. Honestly I had forgotten my good intention of supporting my friends and then happened to see a link with a message that the topic would be of great interest. Immediately I tuned in.

I'd already begun reading the book Evernote Success by Jason Frasca and had listened to Les Dossey on his HOA called "Get UnStuck with Les" so I at least knew a little about where each of them were coming from in the topic being delivered

Everyone can stand to become more efficient and effective. Am I right?

Since I've been getting familiar with Google+ over the last few months I've gained clarity in the projects I want to complete to take my brand to the next level. Having a plan of "how" was where I lacked clarity. But we are not supposed to worry about the how in order to get started. So I knew it would just flower when it was supposed to. At a recent meetup with some mompreneurs, one of my friends shared a brilliant idea in breaking down an actionable checklist for all the projects you have going on. This HOA was part of the "a-ha" in not just how to plug in that system, but the going after what I want. 

This is worth watching so I wanted to link it here for you directly:

The actions I took after watching this HOA :

Purchased the book Getting Things Done
Created our family dream vacation vision board with my daughter
Completed my 2014 Vision Board
Did some number crunching to see my dreams can become a reality


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I just went to their event page to say the image they have advertising the show is not so far fetched given the actions I took directly after watching (Clearly they created it with a little tongue in cheek if you read the footnote - but still I will be looking back to this pivotal turning point as 2014 draws to an end). 


I'm grateful for the hosts putting together a great show. Also the guests for sharing some fabulous content.
I'm grateful to myself for taking the leap and watching the show and for taking action. Also grateful for that mompreneur group that I'm part of because while I could not attend the Vision Board meeting on Wednesday night, it made all of this present in my mind. PLUS, my friend Amelia came to my Signing Story Time program and offered to let me take an extra poster board and as many of the magazines as I wanted to create mine since I missed the gathering. That Reticular Activating System is hard at work.