Posted in Crafting and Cooking, Goal Setting, Personal Wellness, Spiritual Wellness

Finding Balance

I was sitting here today thinking how quickly time goes by. It’s been quite awhile since I’ve written anything for my blog and it seems at times that I can easily forget about writing. Part of achieving complete wellness is finding balance. In the hustle and bustle of today’s world, it is easy to lose sight of this. Think about what it would mean for you to have balance. What’s important to you? How do you spend your free time? For me, having balance incorporates having time for my business, being with my husband, having time alone with the Lord, having time to do things that I enjoy such as cooking, reading, exercising and of course, crocheting. 😊 Of course with that list, setting time in your schedule to do all these things is important.

So, how do you manage your time? How do you fit in what’s important to you and get the average day to day things done that we all need to do and still find time to do the things that you enjoy. Well, I have a little tip that has helped me with this and that involves mapping out my week on paper. Now I have fallen in love with the all the new planners out there in the local craft stores and how they can be used for multi purposes.

In other posts, I have mentioned that I’m a visual person, meaning that it’s easier for me if I am able to write things down so I can see it. Using a calendar or journal to write down the things you need to do in the upcoming week, things that are important to you and things you keep forgetting to do like exercise, spending 15 minutes cleaning out the junk drawer, spending time reading your favorite book and so on. It’s common to hear people say (and yes, I have said it too), “I just don’t have time to…..” Well, planning out your week, writing it down so you can visually see how you manage your time is important.

I hope this simple tip to help you manage your time and your free time helps! Here’s to achieving complete wellness in 2018!!!

Posted in Crafting and Cooking, Inspiring Quotes, My Recipes, Positive Thinking, Self-Esteem, Spiritual Wellness

Welcoming Fall!

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There is a little crisp feeling in the air today and I thought to myself….”ahh, the beginning of  fall.”  I absolutely love the fall and all the feelings that the start of a new season brings.  I immediately start thinking about fall recipes, pumpkins, pumpkin spice lattes, crocheting scarves, the leaves changing colors and so on.  I start putting up the fall decorations, search my recipe file for my favorite soup recipes and pumpkin recipes.  It is such an amazing feeling!!!

Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.

~ F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

I also sit and think about how amazing God is and how he has created everything the surrounds us.  So today, just take a moment to take in all that the beginnings of fall brings.  Go outside, take a deep breath and thank God for all that he provides for us.  Start a gratitude journal today and write down three things that you are grateful for and see how your positive thinking will increase.

So, here is to the joy that beginning of fall brings……..now go out their and enjoy it!!!

Posted in Crafting and Cooking, My Recipes, Relaxation

Baking Italian Pizzelles

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One of my favorite things to bake are Italian Pizelles.  The are a light, crisp cookie with a hint of anise.  Now some people use vanilla, almond or lemon extract in their pizzelles but I prefer using anise seeds and anise extract.   Now in the fall and over the holidays, I love to make chocolate pizzelles as well as pumpkin pizzelles.  I find that pizelles are great to take to parties or any social gathering because it seems to be one of those cookies that people tend not to make.

To make pizzelles, you do need a pizzelle iron to make them but they are inexpensive and can be found in at your local store for kitchen supplies.  I have had my Pizzelle Iron for a very long time and it works great!

So, I am going to start by giving you a couple tips for prepping followed by my favorite basic pizzelle recipe:

  1. Many pizzelle recipes can be made ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator.  If you decide to do that, just take your batter out 30 minutes before baking.
  2. Make sure you plug-in your pizzelle iron before starting so it is warm and use a small amount of vegetable oil or melted shortening with a pastry brush and lightly put it on your press so your pizzelles don’t stick to the iron.  I only need to do this before baking them.
  3. Make sure you follow the instructions on using your Pizzelle Iron.

Classic Italian Pizzelles Recipe

  • 1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup of unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon of anise extract (or almond, vanilla or lemon extract depending on what you like)
  • Anise seeds (about a 1/4 cup – I eye this when I am making my batter)
  1. Pre-heat your Pizzelle Iron
  2. Mix your flour and baking powder in a small bowl and stir.
  3. Mix your eggs and sugar using a mixer for about 1 minute until thickened.
  4. On low-speed, add the melted butter and anise extract and mix until combined (about 20 seconds).
  5. Add the flour mixture and mix until combine (about 15 seconds – be sure not to over mix).
  6. Then using a spoon, drop approximately 1 1/2 teaspoons of the batter and drop in the center of one of your patterned cookie grills on your Pizzelle Iron.  Close the lid and lock.  With most irons, there is a little light that is red and then turns green when the cookie is done.  Just check the instructions on your particular Pizzelle Iron for the specifics for your press.
  7. Remove the pizzelle from the iron and place on a cookie rack to cook.  Completely cook the pizzelles and then dust them with a little powdered sugar before serving.

If you love pizzelles, trust me, they are simple to bake and take very little time.  The great thing about them is that they taste amazing and will make your family and friends very happy.  At some point, I will post my recipe for making chocolate and pumpkin pizzelle so that you have the recipes for the fall and the holiday season.

Happy Baking!! 🙂

Posted in Crafting and Cooking, Goal Setting, Health, Personal Wellness

Stepping Stones of Your Life

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So, how do you get to Point A to Point B?  Is it easier to take the elevator up or is it better to take the steps?  Every day we are presented with options or choices and it is those little decisions that we make on a daily basis that impact our  lives.  The basic question today centers around, what steps are you taking to reach whatever goal it is that you want to achieve?

Now, all of us have goals and some of them are short-term ones or long-term ones.  The problem with goal setting is that having a goal is great….but writing down the steps that you need to do on a daily basis is sometimes the challenge.  When we are juggling so many things in a day, it can be hard to focus on something that you really want for your life. I have written in previous posts about the importance of mapping out your week in order to manage your time better and incorporate the things that you want to achieve into your weekly schedule.  Now, here are a few tips to help you not only set your goal but ways to work on it on a daily basis.

As an example, let’s say that your goal is weight loss.

  1. First, carve out 5-10 minutes each day to focus on your goal.  Dedicating the time to reflect on the day and map out the steps that you are going to take that day is important.  Pull out your calendar too in case you want down things on it about the day ahead.
  2. The next thing to do is break that long-term goal down and be more specific.  Instead of saying that you want to lose weight, let’s say that the long-term goal is to lose 20 pounds in the next 3 months.
  3. Then write down what steps you are going to do on a daily basis to achieve your goal.  Be sure to write them down!! Some steps may include: drinking 64 ounces of water every day, journal what you eat at every meal, plan your meals in advance, measure what you eat in order to maintain appropriate portion control, eat more vegetables, incorporate more fiber into your diet, take a multivitamin with a high absorption rate and so on.  You may want to put these steps into a daily check list so you can actually see how you are doing each day.
  4. Then write down anything else that you want to do that day to help you work on your goal.  If you have 30 – 60 minutes to walk or exercise that day, write it down.
  5. At the end of each day, review your list for the day and see how you did.
  6. Do these steps consistently for one month and watch how much you have achieved your goal.

The biggest thing about goal setting is writing down your steps and sticking with them.  I know that life can be hectic but if you write down mini-goals for yourself to help your achieve the larger goal, you will see positive results.

So, here is to the first step to achieving complete wellness!!

Posted in Crafting and Cooking, Personal Wellness, Self-Esteem

Getting in Touch with Your Creative Side

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I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend!! Today, as we were our in our garden, I started wondering how much I enjoy doing things that are creative.  One area of wellness that some people forget about is Creative Wellness.  So many people being are afraid to let their creativity shine for one reason or another (usually it is that thing called FEAR that is stopping them once again).  Others feel that they do not have time to be creative.

So, my question today is, how do you express your creativity?

There are so many ways that creativity can be expressed.  Take a moment to sit down and make a list of all the things that you do in a day that is creative.  Some of my personal favorites include: cooking, gardening, reading, blogging :), taking pictures, making jewelry and crocheting (to name a few……lol).  Now I do not claim to be an “artist” or a world famous chef, but I do enjoy the process of doing things that are creative.  I feel that I am a blessed person that I am able to have the time, the ability and the desire to do things that are creative.

So, what about you?

My personal feeling is that everyone has a creative side.  Whether is is painting, woodworking, cooking, crafting, etc., there is a little bit of creativity inside of you.  Now some of you may be thinking “I have always wanted to learn how to cook using different seasonings but…….”  or “I have always wanted to learn how to do ___________ but…”   You see the “but” is what stops so many people.  Whether is fear, lack of having the time to do something you want to do or learn something that you want to learn, the “but” is what stops so many people.

So, today, think about your creative side.  Are you spending time during the day to express your creativity or do you have a “but” that is stopping you?  Take a few minutes to come up with a plan how to incorporate a little creativity into your life!!!! I promise, you won’t regret it!!! 🙂

Posted in Crafting and Cooking, Goal Setting, Personal Wellness, Positive Thinking, Self-Esteem, Spiritual Wellness

Making the Commitment!!!!

I hope everyone is having an amazing Monday!! When I begin a new week, I think about all the things that I want to achieve in the week ahead. My to do list is HUGE some weeks (as I am sure many of you can relate to).  Of course, thinking about things and turning those thoughts into action are two different things.  I have to laugh at myself because I have so many things that I want to do and then later realize that I barely got to the third thing on my list.

Part of the problem for many is making the commitment to not only doing something but putting that thought it into action.  Think about how many times you or a person you know have said that they have a long to do list and that they got nothing done on their list.  Oftentimes, the dilemma is finding time to do things on the “list” and actually designating time to complete the task.  That is the missing link for many.

So, part of the question lies in how do you put your thoughts into action.  Here are a few tips that have helped me along the way and may help you as well.

  1. Get out your daily or weekly calendar or print one out for free online (there are so many out there to print).
  2. Get out a couple of pens or highlighters of a variety of colors.
  3. We are going to focus just on this week to start.
  4. Assign different tasks with a different color pen or highlighter.  Example – I use orange for exercising, purple for my bible study, green for my business, pink for personal and blue for other (like gardening, crocheting, reading, baking….you catch my drift).
  5. In your calendar, write down in the appropriate color, any current appointments or obligations that you know that you have to do.
  6. Now, schedule time to do other things that you want to get done this week.  For example, if you want to schedule time to go to the gym on Wednesday night at 7pm, write it down in the appropriate color pen and put it in  your calendar.  If you want to spend time reading, put it in your calendar.   If you want to drink 64 ounces of water a day, put it in your daily calendar.
  7. The next thing is to stick with your schedule.  Make the commitment and each week, spend time planning your schedule rather that letting your schedule get away from you.  On average, anything you commit to and put into action for 20 days will become a part of your routine.

Let me know how you are doing with this task.  In accomplishing this, you may feel that you are getting more things done in a week than usual which will give you a sense of accomplishment.  A little tip – that sense of accomplishment will also give you a self-esteem boost too!!!!! 🙂

Posted in Personal Wellness, Positive Thinking, Self-Esteem

Power of Being Positive

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On Tuesday, I started our journey on developing a positive self-esteem and asked you to write down 5-10 characteristics or qualities that you like about yourself.  I asked you to read that list once a day to begin the process of saying a positive self-statement.  The point of that activity was to help you acknowledge some of the many positive traits that you possess.  Now you need to continue reading that list to yourself minimally once a day!!  Remember, the trick to having good self-esteem is learning to replace negative self statements with positive ones and start believing in yourself.

Negative self statements are a way that we rob ourselves from  attaining our goals, having high self-esteem and having confidence in our abilities and talents.  Telling yourself something negative like “I can’t do this” or “it is impossible” simply gives you a negative message and creates feeling of anxiety, depression, or simply the feeling of giving up on your goal.   Now some of these negative self statements we learned from childhood and we need to learn and practice on a daily basis changing that tune (pardon the expression…lol).

So, today, I am going to ask you to do a few things to start changing your negative thinking to positive thinking:

  1. First, read your list of 5-10 characteristics or qualities that you like about yourself daily.
  2. On a piece of paper, draw a line down the middle of the page.  On the left side of the paper, write “Negative Self Statements.”  On the right side, write “Positive Self Statements.”
  3. Under the column, “Negative Self Statements”, start to list (you can number them if you want) any negative statement that you tell yourself frequently.  An example, “I can’t do this because I am not smart enough.”
  4. Then in the right column, labeled “Positive Self Statements”, I want you to change that negative thought to one that is positive and that you believe.  Taking the negative statement that I gave in #3, a reframing of that statement to one that is positive is: “I can do this because I am motivated and have the ability to learn new things.”
  5. Write down as many statements as you can think of and then change them to one that is positive.
  6. Next, you need to practice saying them to yourself and catch yourself if you find yourself saying one of the negative self statements on your list.

By doing this activity daily, you will begin to see a change in how you think about yourself, how you view things in your life and may begin to feel motivated, inspired and able to achieve anything that you set your mind to.  Be patient with yourself and know that you are on a journey to learn a new way to thinking.

Welcome to a new you!!! 🙂

Posted in Inspiring Quotes, Personal Wellness, Spiritual Wellness

Have Faith

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One of the areas in my life that I have had amazing growth in is in my spiritual walk. For many years, I was blinded and like many people, I thought that I had things together and had everything I needed. However, something missing. For many years, I couldn’t figure it out and simply shrugged my shoulders and thought that things were simply as good as they were going to get. Yet, I was not truly happy. I gave the appearance of being happy, had things that one would say create happiness but there was still that emptiness inside. For myself, it was that feeling of not having a direction or not having a purpose on this planet.

On my journey, I met an amazing man, who is now my husband and he started talking to me about God and faith. I had a million questions for him…lol….as I am always asking questions!!! Then I started reading the Bible, started doing bible studies and my faith and belief in God increased. I started to learn that nothing is impossible with God on our side and in fact, one of my favorite quotes is: “…with God all things are possible” ~ Matthew 19:26. So, this morning, I decided that I would write a little bit about my journey, my discoveries about myself, my faith, my belief and the ability to trust in the hopes that it would touch the hearts of those who read this post.

Now, I am not going to preach, but I do feel that so many people are searching for something and unfortunately in the world we live in, so many focus on worldly things. They focus on the things that they have, but not the intrinsic things that have true meaning and give one purpose. The dilemma of that is that in the end, at the end of the day, none of that matters. All that matters is our relationship with God and as it says in Psalms 105:3-4:

…let the heart of those who seek the Lord rejoice

Look to the Lord and his strength;

seek his face always.

Part of my road to wellness incorporates for many things but Spiritual Wellness takes precedence over everything. It is just a matter of trusting in Him and knowing that He is going to guide us in every aspect of our life on this earth. In my reading today, one verse keeps resonating in me as I am writing:

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;

his love endures forever.

~Psalms 107:1

Just remember that having faith is simply believing in what Jesus Christ has done for you, and having trust in Him. A part of having faith is learning that if we lift our cares, our anxieties, or worries to God, he will be there to guide us and lift our burdens. Have faith and watch your happiness and dreams come true.

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