Marriage help

Creating Home


Have you spent time putting ideas on paper of how you want things to go at home? Chores you’d like the kids to do, a rotation of cleaning or cooking responsibilities or even figured out when you’ll study and rest?

Sometimes this time can feel misspent if you get your master plan mapped out and then something crazy throws life way off balance! Like say, breaking a bone or having surgery or remodeling a house or moving…the list of potential plan-disruptive events is long.

But was your planning time really wasted? What happens when you are out of commission? Hopefully you will have help with things you temporarily can’t do and your general plan can serve as a guide to helpers. What happens when you get through the move? Voila! You can post your plan and get to work maintaining your new place.

Surely getting through the disruptions, the waiting until things are back to manageable, takes a lot of patience. You have to hold on to the vision of your kind of “normal” until you can live it again.

And if things change so much that your original plan doesn’t fit anymore, you can go back to the drawing board and craft one that does. Only now you’ll have the experience of thinking through things and writing your thoughts out.

Kids thrive on knowing what comes next. Routine and order can serve as a security blanket. The fact that regular life has so many twists and turns just means that we work for days of pattern and predictability, sprinkled with times of spontaneity and fun, while learning agility and practicing patience when we experience windows of waiting.

I wish you all the best!!



Flesh and Blood and Beauty


Ever notice the simple truth that men and women are very, very different?

Isn’t it funny that that’s a no-brainer question and you might think I’m being funny, but in society’s quest for reaching some kind of realm where we are all the same, sometimes this blatant fact gets over looked or kicked under the proverbial rug.

We are different. We are vastly different and we need to be in order to make the whole that our two halves make.

So to point out a few things about women that we get stuck on if we are trying to be like men:

We are softer. We have different hormones that make us that way. Yes, there are the few sculpted, young, tanned and toned female bodies that are posted everywhere we look so that we can compare ourselves and come up short, and somehow think that we are flawed and need to hide. But those bodies don’t look like anyone I know. And I have beautiful friends! They just don’t look like they’ve been through body-building boot camp. They look like women who are healthy and active but not with buns or anything of steel. {Can I say that?}

We are more susceptible to the effects of stress. Nope, we aren’t robots, nor are we like the “women” in movies who carry machine guns while wearing seductive red leather…whatevers. You know who I mean? The newish heroines who are as tough and crass as the men but still have to be sexually alluring? {What is that about?} We don’t zoom here and there and hire and fire people with no emotion and order the world around or go through separation and loneliness without visible, sometimes crushing effects. Our hormonal balance tips when we get over-done. It lets our bodies know that it’s not a good time to conceive, since there’s already so much commotion going on we might not be able to carry and nurture another life.

We need the care and nurture of other women. Our mothers and sisters and daughters and friends are very important to our health! We need connections and talking and support and friendship in order to be well. We also need breaks! We multi-task like nobody’s business and then need to disengage from the intensity and have a good laugh or sometimes a good cry and oftentimes both!

So my friends, particularly my young friends, if you are feeling that you need to be going at break-neck speed to have the body of Hollywood’s dreams, or fame or recognition or all of the accomplishments that you want, right now, please know that your speed will eventually be more hurtful than helpful. Cortisol {that notorious stress hormone} thrives on you thinking that you need have it and be it all now! It will keep you from losing that weight. It will keep your hormones in disarray. It will age you and depress you and leave your husband wondering what has happened to the wonderful girl he married.

Our nurturing nature requires us to be present in order to be effective. That means that when we are relaxed and enjoying ourselves we are far more nurturing than when we are uptight and thinking about something else! {Sigh. I so wish I could snap myself back in time to try again knowing that is the goal instead of trying to find validation in doing too much!} I hope you can benefit from knowing that you were designed to foster connections and that you will be far more effective when you do what it takes to pamper yourself and calm yourself and create in yourself a warm and sunny place that will renew you and keep you fresh as much as possible.

Be well. It’s pretty important to those you love.







It Works!


Ladies! I just have to share an epiphany I had last night! Well, I had it again, probably for the 50th time over the last 25 years…

But first a little background:

For the past two+ months I’ve been functioning with a broken foot. Cooking was non-existent for the first six weeks of that time, but now that I’ve graduated to a walking boot and can put weight on both of my legs, I can get around in the kitchen for short bursts of productivity.

What happened in between being down and now functioning enough to tackle the kitchen again is that I’ve had to make the leap again from not thinking much about food to where do I begin?

What to cook? How about the grocery list? {I kind of felt tired getting my brain back into the game.} This is how it went:

Last evening, I waddled into the kitchen on my wobbly boot, opened the cupboard door, pulled out my binder with about 20 weeks of meal plans (created over as many years), read aloud several of the week’s menus to my son and my husband, they voted on the one that sounded best to them, I pulled the index card from the plastic sleeve that has the grocery list on it, and BAM! I am ready to shop and cook!!!

It still amazes me.

Planning works.

It supports you over and over and over again.

It makes life simpler, happier and far less stressful.

So, if you are 1) living in dinner decision chaos, know that there is no need to live under that kind of pressure! Or 2) if you are making meal plans but not keeping them, repent! Plunk them down into a binder and stop spending time reinventing the wheel!

I hope that you will decide today to lighten your load by making a plan to feed your family simply and well.

Much love!


P.S. If you feel overwhelmed by working out a plan, consider a health coaching program with Lioness! Meal planning is one of the major life skills that you will learn here along with being empowered in many other areas of family health and wellness too! Give me a shout if you would like to chat and see if we would be a compatible coach/client team!

Nope, You Don’t!


Just saying the words, “I don’t have to make everything all better” gives me a feeling of relief!
{If you’re new to this on-going discussion, I am referring to a book by Gary and Joy Lundberg, by that title.}

Why do we so easily buy into the false reality of needing to solve other people’s problems? Because some of us are co-dependent? Yes, I’d say that’s a big reason for me. Or what about, instead of getting our fix from fixing other’s problems, we are just really trying to stall, to procrastinate the changes we need to make? That’s still over there in the codependency realm isn’t it?

Ok, so what if you just want for someone to have less stress or an easier time with a challenge they have?

Well, that’s understandable. Ask any of us moms and we’d probably tell you that we have to think through the appropriateness of our attempts to support our children, even when they are grown!

So, as a reminder: your problems are your problems and their problems are theirs. I chuckle as I write this because that statement clears the muddy water pretty quickly!

What about compassion you ask? Aren’t we in the business of giving and serving and even sacrificing for our loved ones?

Yes, we are and here is where compassion comes in:
It comes when you listen with your full attention {if that isn’t an act of love, I don’t know what is!},
you ask validating questions {not giving into the temptation to give your two bits or lecture, another act of love!},
and then you give encouragement and, if you feel it is appropriate,
you ask what you can do to help with their problem.

They remain in the driver’s seat. You remain in the support seat. They figure out their problems and you figure out yours.

They get to keep their dignity and grow in decision-making skills and maturity and you get to live your life, as a trusted friend and mentor.

If I think of this process as it applies to my prayers and the desires I have for God to direct me, it is enlightening! Of course I want to grow and become all He knows I can be, so I can’t expect Him to tell me exactly when, how and what to do! Becoming requires our stretching, our thinking through our motives and desires, making our best judgments and learning from the consequences of our choices. I believe our Heavenly Father wants to bless us, but he is the great Validator, and won’t overstep our agent-hood by forcing us into or away from anything. So, like a child being asked by his parents, “how can we help?,”  I believe that God is waiting for us to ask for the help and blessings we need with our problems!

We just gotta keep on, no giving up! We’re on the road to becoming amazing validators with amazing kids! We just have to stay on the road {by apologizing when we blow it and forgiving when they do}, and we’ll get there over time.

I’m sending you my vote of confidence and my testimony that you are wonderful! I have seen your hearts so many times in your desires and actions and I know they are good!

Love and best wishes,