Monday, January 25, 2016

Seren-MOM-ity TADA

SEREN-MOM-ITY{things I have learned as a mom as I have utterly failed and picked myself up dusted myself off and tried again and then discovered a most delightful gem}

     This post is for women, moms or not but this bit of insight after much pondering and putting it into practice has made me a better mother by far than I would have been without it.


     For several years now I have had one little word or phrase that has been my focus for the year.  I happen to follow another blogger on instagram(to be honest I had never been to the bloggers website until this day but her instagram feed was always uplifting and honest) and she had posted her one little word TADA(this was a few years back) That one little word struck me as odd and made me curious to find out the story behind it.
 
     She went to a womens conference and the speaker(sorry I do not remember the name of the speaker or the conference) was talking about to do lists.  We as women write to do lists and at the end of the day we look back at those lists and see everything that we did not accomplish(DOH).  I personally at this point in time was right in that boat looking at everything that still needing to be done and to be honest I was quite hard on myself.  Telling myself I wasn't good enough, I need to use my time better, that I wasn't being a good mom, daughter, wife, sister...you name it I was certainly the worst at it and that all wound up with me being less of me.  I love this quote as a gentle reminder that I am not alone in those feelings, "Most people carrying heavy loads begin to doubt themselves and their own worth." President Henry B Eyring  The speaker from the conference went on to say we do not take into consideration that the list would have been impossible for 10 women to accomplish it in a day and we seldom ever look at what we did do with any great achievement because of what we didn't do.  She suggested instead of writing a to do list at the beginning of the day to write a TADA list at the end of the day.  This for me was like a light bulb moment and my heart filled with the spirit.  Why had I not ever looked back at the end of my day and looked at what I did do.  I wasn't giving myself any credit for what I did  accomplish .  I always took prayerful thought into my to do list and what the Lord wanted me to do and I was frustrated with everything.  I was swirling into a pit of  situational depression. I was becoming unable to interact with the world around me and that was making everything worse.
     The next day I was determined to write a TADA list at the end of the day and it was wonderful.  After few weeks I was feeling back to my old self and the self doubt and depression slowly melted away.  I wasn't being as hard on myself anymore and I was feeling like I was in no way perfect but I was enough and a good person which if you would have asked me 2 weeks prior I would have told you I was as about as useful as trying to light a fire on top of water.  Now that I was out of my funk(and I will tell you I find myself in and out of it from time to time still)  I played with it a bit and came to a nice balance(we need to remember we are all different and just because someone suggests something it might not work for you just that way but making a few adjustments does).  I still needed a to do list for my own sanity so I don't forget anything important like taking popcorn into my sons class or something like that(and yes I just did that last week) but at the end of the day it gets tossed into the garbage.  What I came to realize from writing these to do lists as a guide and TADA lists at the end of the day is I really could see for the first time where the Lord took my to do list and made it his TADA list.  My lists became more meaningful, I could see him using me as his hands upon the earth, I could feel his spirit more fully, and I could see his blessing more fully in my life.  I became more self confident as a woman, wife, mother, sister, teacher, daughter of a Heavenly Father that loves me beyond measure.
     Where I stand today, there are some days when I need to write a TADA list so I can look back and feel good about what I have done and see the Lords blessings.  What I have realized over time if I were to sit and compare my 2 lists my to do list is my list of what I think the Lord wants me to do and my TADA list is what he needed me to do.  I am so grateful for the experience of feeling like less of a person so that I could grow and become more of who my Heavenly Father knows I am.

     If you are not feeling like the best you write a TADA list...reflect on how the Lord has used you as his hands, how you were a wonderful mother today, how you blessed someone else, how you are absolutely awesome just the way you are and you have a Father in Heaven that loves you beyond measure.



BE AWESOME,
Julia
   

Friday, January 22, 2016

Healthy Homemade Chicken Nuggets(sauce too)


     These have been a family favorite since 2005.  When I find chicken on sale I cut half of it up to make these yummy nibbles.  I put them in freezer bags with the serving size for each member in our family so for our family of 5 I put 25 in a bag.

Ingredients:
1 Cup fat free Greek Yogurt
1 lb Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast (cut into nugget size pieces)

Coating Mixture
1/2 Cup Bread Crumbs
1/2 Cup Cornmeal
2 TB Flour
2 TB Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp Paprika
1/2 tsp Dried Basil
1/2 tsp Garlic Granules
1/4 tsp salt

Add chicken and the yogurt in a bowl and stir until chicken is well coated.  Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Spray lightly baking sheet with vegetable oil spray.

Mix together remaining ingredients in a shallow bowl.

Coat chicken one piece at a time with the coating mixture.  Place chicken on baking sheet in a single layer and lightly spray with vegetable oil.  

Bake for 20 minutes or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center.

Now for the dipping sauces.  Ranch and BBQ are the faves of the kids but for a bit more sophisticated palate and for moms everywhere that will be eating these nuggets with their children I want to give you the gift of yummy sauces that are super easy to whip up.

Creamy Honey Mustard Sauce
1/4 Cup fat free Sour Cream
1 TB plus 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 TB Honey

Black Berry Dipping Sauce
1/4 Cup all fruit seedless Blackberry Spread
2 TB Olive Oil Mayo
1/8 tsp cinnamon 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Seren-MOM-ity {Schedule Schedule Schedule}

SEREN-MOM-ITY{things I have learned as a mom as I have utterly failed and picked myself up dusted myself off and tried again and then discovered a most delightful gem}

     Sorry for not posting in forever.  It is my goal to post these every Monday-Mommy Monday if you will but I too have a mom and friends that needed some attention.

     Yes we hear this all the time our children need a schedule.  I consider it more a rhythm of the home.  A time when your home is full of activity.  A time when it is calm.  A time when it is focused.  A time when its crazy.  All these times are necessary for our children.  I didn't recognize how important having a schedule was and what a blessing it was to me until I brought my 4th child home from the hospital.  Luckily it was in the summer so I didn't have to contend with a school schedule yet with my 10 year old but I did have a 17 month old and a soon to be 3 year old and to be quite honest I had no idea how I was going to manage it all.  The first day my husband went back to work I was a bit nervous but then an amazing thing happened my 17 month old and new baby took a morning nap together.  In the afternoon  all 3 of my younger children took naps at the same time.  They all went to bed at their bedtimes 6:45, 7:00, and 7:15.  By 2 months almost to the day my infant was sleeping through the night( I will discuss this topic soon).  Our life was scheduled and our home had a rhythm that ebbed and flowed and allowed me time to be rejuvenated myself.  To this day over 13 years later we still have a schedule and it nearly mirrors that of my days with infants and toddlers but now it is with tweens and teens.

How do you create this flow you ask?  It starts with some building blocks: Wake Up Time, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Bedtime.  Have set times for these 5 things first.  Now we are not going to be crazy clock watchers and cause ourselves undue stress but lets say you are having dinner around 5:30ish.  Waking up at 7ish.  Make an about time and leave a bit of wiggle room for yourself.  Next slip in naps and snack times.  For those with older children reading time, homework, a time to veg from a busy school day.
       It's amazing how having a home that ebbs and flows and is predictable creates such peace even amongst the craziness of it all.  Your children know what to expect, you know a break will becoming, when a wrench gets thrown into the day you all handle it well because the next day will be back to a comfortable normalcy.

     Try a "schedule" and see if it brings a bit of peace into your life...even when your toddler is laying on the floor screaming about something in audible you will know in 30 minutes they are taking a nap and you can do it!!!

Be Awesome,
Julia