Blogging

Seven Years Later…

7 YEARS LATER - YOU NEVER KNOW WHERE YOUR STORY WILL TAKE YOU...

 

I was looking at my calendar last week, and I realized that it was seven years ago that my world came crashing down around me. My mind wandered back to that awful night in November when I discovered the heartbreaking truth about my first marriage. I had been so busy working on exciting new things that I had forgotten about that particular anniversary.

 

Seven years. Wow.

 

Chapter 5

 

I’ve taken some time since then to ponder all that has happened in the last seven years, and I am in awe. I never would have dared to dream about where this story would take me.

 

Seven years ago…

My Littlest Gift - justoneoftheboys.com

 

I was broken.

The future seemed hopeless.

I felt so alone.

I had three scared little faces looking up at me for reassurance.

I had to be strong… for them.

 

Seven years later…

Boys at St. Louis Arch

 

My heart has continued to heal a little more each day.

I have hope – wild and beautiful hope for the future – and now I get to share it with others.

I have learned that I’m not alone, and sharing the darkest parts of my story lets me help others know that they aren’t alone on this journey either.

There are three growing boys smiling back at me.

When I can’t be strong, I have my faith and the arms of my Beloved, family, and friends to hold me up until I can walk again.

 

Family at the Chicago Bean

 

The world which once felt so dark, scary, and lonely is opening up right in front of me! Somebody needs to pinch me, because I can’t believe what I’m about to tell you – 2016 is shaping up to be an exciting year…

 

I’m going to KENYA in July!

 

And then I’m going to southern INDIA in September!

 

Everything has happened so quickly – but I am beyond thrilled to be joining our church in the work they are doing in both places. After years of learning about the situations and struggles that women and girls face in both countries, praying, and wondering what in the world a little mom from Kansas could do to help – I feel like it’s all getting plopped down right in my lap! I get to work with amazing women who are going through some of the very same struggles that we face. These women are just like us – they need to feel that they are seen, loved, and accepted for who they are. They need friendship, community, and security. Many of them are in abusive relationships. Many of them know the pain of their husbands being unfaithful in their marriages. These are male-dominated societies where women and girls are not valued, and my heart is aching for them.

 

My friend Joy told me stories of women who have to attend secret church services so their husbands do not realize that they are Christians. Sometimes the husbands will follow the wives to church – and beat them right in the middle of the church service. For their faith. It was when my friend told me about this that I immediately felt my heart drawn to these women. Seven years ago I didn’t have a voice, but healing, growing, and those who poured into my life were my voice until I found it again. My heart’s desire is to be the voice for others who can’t speak up for themselves, and to give them hope while they find their own voices again. Joy’s sister Elishba let me use her photo of one of these secret church services…

 

Madurai church - women

 

This is Nalini. She is one of these precious ladies. When her husband found out that she attended church services, he would beat her and lock her out of the house at night so she had to sleep in the street. Thankfully, her husband has been changing and she has been able to attend services without any trouble from him recently.

 

Nalini

 

Dear friends, these women and girls are our sisters, and I hope that we will all stand with them in support. We’re all on this journey together!

 

Joy and Ginger

 

Another exciting piece of news is that my lovely friend Joy is translating many of my blog posts into her native Tamil language – to be a book!!! Her father is the pastor of the church above – and they want to share our story with the women in their city. I am still in awe of how things are coming together! I have been busy editing and putting together our blog posts into a manuscript for Joy to translate – and then share with whomever can be encouraged by it.

 

This is what I’ve been doing lately – printing, playing around with the order of the chapters, and editing with my handy red pen…

Manuscript

 

*Sidenote – Isn’t my new African journal beautiful? My friend Toni from Red Pen Travelers did a fabulous job – and I can’t wait to take it with me on my travels! She will be making leather India journals in a few months to help support my trip to India! Check them out for yourself – her notebooks would make perfect Christmas presents!

 

African Journal - Red Pen Travelers

 

I am so excited to share all of this with you because you NEVER KNOW what the future holds. You never know how your story can be used to touch someone else’s heart. To you, my friends, who are hurting right now – when you feel like you’re being pulled under by the unrelenting waves of your own pain, please know that there really is hope. There’s no telling who you might help by sharing your story with someone going through their own storm.

 

Seven years ago I never could have dreamed that one day my story of feeling so broken and alone would help anyone – especially women in other parts of the world. I feel so humbled that this Kansas girl gets to take a message of hope to our sisters in India and Kenya next year. I can’t wait to throw my arms around them and let them know how loved they are. Just like you, my friends, I want them to know that they are seen, they are loved, and they are not alone.

 

I am so honored to get to spend part of your day with you. Thank YOU for going on this journey with me!

Love & hugs,

~ G

 

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

Take a Little Time ~ Take 4

Take a Little Time for You! header

 

Happy Monday, Friends! How was your week? Did it fly by like mine did? I’m not sure where the weekend went, but it’s a brand-spankin’ new week and I’m ready to take it on… after I have one more cup of Earl Grey tea. *wink*

 

Last week I set a goal for myself to do at least ONE little thing for myself every day… just because. I shared my goals a few days late last week, but I was able to find just a few minutes here and there to do one little thing that made me smile. Best of all – they were free!

 

Wednesday: I turned on Pandora to enjoy one of my favorite stations (Glenn Miller’s In the Mood) while getting the house ready for our Home Team to come over that night. Cleaning is much more fun when you have swing music to help lighten the mood! What kind of music do you like to listen to while you clean?

 

Thursday: I shared this on Facebook and Instagram – “Know who aren’t getting much-anticipated root beer floats this afternoon? Three grumpy boys who shall remain nameless. Know who IS getting a much-deserved root beer float instead? ME! A mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do! *wink*”

Root beer float

 

Friday: Curled up with one of my favorite writing books, Bird by Bird, before bed. I’ve been savoring its words for a few minutes each night ever since.

Books that Stick ~ Bird by Bird

 

Saturday: I wrote a story out about my boys that is very close to my heart to share with you this week!

A Mommy's Love - To Infinity... and Beyond

 

Sunday: I woke up with a hankerin’ to wear animal print. I remembered a retro-ish leopard print swing jacket that I hadn’t worn in a long time – and it became the basis for what I wore to church that morning! I don’t know why, but it made me smile, and it felt good to step a little bit out of my comfort zone!

 

Last Week’s Goals ~

 

  • ~ Drink 60 oz. of water each day, and coconut water once or twice this week. I missed my goal one day this week with regular water, and only drank coconut water once this week – but I feel like I’m getting better overall! 
  • ~ Eat a healthy breakfast (or brunch) each morning. Yep!
  • ~ Take multivitamins each morning. I’m pretty sure I forgot these on Saturday, but I remembered the rest of the week.
  • ~ Put on real clothes during the week, and post pictures to The Pleated Poppy’s What I Wore link-upI wore my Jayhawk sweats on Saturday during the basketball game, but otherwise I stayed out of my shlumpy clothes! 

comfy outfit

  • ~ Work out for at least 10 minutes five times this weekCheck! And I have the sore abs from Pilates to prove it!
  • ~ Remove my old polish and apply new polish to my toes. Would you believe that I still haven’t tackled this? I went to dig out my favorite winter polish and found that the lid was sealed tight. I guess I need to work on that so my toes can be a pretty peacock blue color this week!
  • ~ Memorize. Work on James 1:1-4 with a group of friends.
  • ~ Do at least ONE thing for myself every day… just because.
  • ~ Tackle that one project I’ve been dreading. I’ve started on it, but it isn’t finished. That will happen this week.
  • ~ Go easy on myself and my injured handThe swelling has gone down quite a bit, but I still can’t fit my wedding ring over my knuckle. My dad, the x-ray man, says I probably tore a ligament in it and have an evulsion fracture – and that I just need to be careful with it as it heals. It throbs when it gets bumped, but otherwise is  getting better – slowly, but surely!

 

This Week’s Goals ~

 

  • ~ Continue to drink 60 oz. of water each day, along with coconut water once or twice this week.
  • ~ Work out 5 times this week for at least 10 minutes each day.
  • ~ Remove my old polish and apply new polish to my toes.
  • ~ Memorize. Keep working on James 1:1-4 with my group of friends.
  • ~ Spend some time outside enjoying the gorgeous (unJanuary-like) weather we’re expecting this week!
  • ~ Continue tackling that one project I’ve been putting off.
  • ~ Take multivitamins each morning.
  • ~ Put on real clothes during the week and stay away from my shlumpy sweats or workout clothes unless I’m actually working out.
  • ~ Do at least ONE little thing for myself each day… just because!
  • ~ Continue to read Love & Respect with my Beloved.

 

What About You? ~

 

I’ll keep sharing even more of my progress on Facebook and Instagram this week, and I’d love it if you joined me. It would be way more fun with you! Let’s find a second to actually take a minute, SIT DOWN today, and just breathe. Let’s put our health, our hearts, and our heads back on the to-do list – and let’s start taking better care of ourselves today!

*Hugs*

~ Ginger

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

Be Intentional With Family ~ In the Midst of Trials

BE-INTENTIONAL-WITH-FAMILY

 

Today I am thrilled to share with y’all a video interview that I had with my friend Alysha from An Intentional Future! She has been hosting a wonderful series this month on living intentionally, and I was honored when she asked me to be part of it! She has such a wonderful message – and I am so grateful to have connected with her through this crazy world of blogging!

 

This is what Alysha wrote about chat our on her blog:

Ginger of justoneoftheboys.com is no stranger to trials and heartache. From being left a single parent of three young boys as she watched her first marriage dissolve, to being transformed into a caregiver as her husband was diagnosed with cancer, she is no stranger to incredible difficulties. Despite it all, she has managed to thrive.

I believe the key to intentionality is effort. Ginger is constantly reevaluating how she can not only better serve her family, but herself. I hope you’ll watch and listen as Ginger shares specific tips for being intentional with family. I also hope you’ll visit and subscribe to her blog!

 

I had such a wonderful time chatting with Alysha! I had been nervous about my very first video chat, but she made me feel right at home. She even made me cry a little as I talked about my boys – in a good way, I assure you! Click HERE to watch our chat – and don’t forget to leave a comment to enter her FANTASTIC GIVEAWAY!

*Hugs*

~ G

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

Take a Little Time ~ Take 3

Take a Little Time for You! header

 

Happy Wednesday, Y’all! I’m a couple of days late with this post. I had an incident this weekend… I’m pretty sure my finger is broken. This is what happens when you have a houseful of boys and you try to hang with them while playing basketball. I reached in for a steal – and now I have a swollen, throbbing, purple appendage where my wedding ring is supposed to be. Anyway – I’m doing my best to hunt and peck with my other fingers on that hand. Part of my goals for this week will certainly be to “baby” my hand so it can heal. It’s a literal pain to do anything – laundry, dishes, washing my hair. It will get better in time, just not fast enough for me!

How did you do this past week? Are you taking a little bit of time just for you? I’m still trying to get over the mental hurdle of believing that if I take better care of myself – Mom, Wife, Friend, Writer – then I can better care for my loved ones. But it’s true! Let’s find a few ways that we can all care for ourselves this week! Here’s how I did with my goals last week…

 

Last Week’s Goals ~

  • ~ Drink 60 oz. of water each day, and coconut water at least twice this week. I missed my goal twice this week, but I am feeling better by making sure that I’m drinking enough water!

 

  • ~ Eat a healthy breakfast (or brunch) each morningYep! Southwestern chicken salad, sausage/sweet potato casserole, chili… Odd choices for breakfast foots, but yum!

Chicken salad

 

 

  • ~ Remove my old polish and apply new polish to my tootsies. I have to confess – I didn’t remove my old polish. *pout* I slapped on a fresh coat of sparkly red on top of my older polish. But it serves me right since I don’t like how it looks now. I’ll be changing this ASAP!

 

  • ~ Clean out my purseCheck! (Side note: My Beloved and boys gave me an Etsy gift card for Christmas, and this was exactly what I was looking for! It’s a fun and funky purse, but it’s also big enough to carry my laptop when I want to do a little writing-on-the-go. Check out the seller’s Etsy shop! I couldn’t be happier with my new bag, and the seller was a dream to work with!) I cleaned out the library receipts, Pokémon cards, church papers, and other things that have collected in my purse since Christmas. Ahhh… I love having a clean purse! Now it only houses my wallet, my sunglasses, lip balm, keys, and room for books or my laptop. Much better!

new purse

 

 

  • ~ Put on real clothes during the work week – stay away from my comfy sweats until after supper or over the weekendGuess what?! I didn’t put on sweats once last week! Sure, I wore leggings and a poncho, but that’s as close as I got. I felt more energized and ready to tackle the day. I’m still tempted to crawl back into sweats after I shower in the mornings, but I’ll keep working on it. I didn’t get photos of every outfit, but I did manage to get a few pics…

Take a little time to dress for the day! 1

Homeschooling and errands ~ (Red shirt – JC Penney, vest – Kohl’s, jeans – Levi’s 535 from Kohl’s, boots – Vince Camuto from Dillard’s, jewelry – my Beloved’s old AF wings and an antique watch necklace from my dad.)

 

Take a little time to dress for the day! Church outfit - red boots, red pashmina, striped skirt

Church outfit ~ (White shirt – TJ Maxx, striped skirt – consignment store, red Pashmina – Qatar {from Hubby’s last deployment}, red boots – Lucky)

 

Take a little time to dress for the day! Blue suede Toms and black shawl scarf! Practical mom uniform!

Homeschooling, cooking, errands ~ (Gray tunic – TJ Maxx, black shawl – thrifted, Domaine jeans – thrifted, blue suede shoes – TOMS clearance)

 

Take a little time to dress for the day! Orange motorcycle jacket and scarf.

Assisting in Science class at our homeschool co-op, homeschooling, errands ~ (Gray sweater tunic – Bass, orange motorcycle jacket – consignment store, scarf – Afghanistan {from a few deployments back}, jeans – Levi’s 535, boots – Vince Camuto.

 

  • ~ Take multivitamins each morning.

 

  • ~ Visit my counselor once this weekAnd what an encouragement it was! As always she challenged me, made me smile, made me cry, and made me think. I have assignments to work on and left feeling ready to tackle life once more!

 

  • ~ Work out for at least 10 minutes EACH day. This happened every day but one. Getting better! I did a 20 minute Pilates video most mornings in the dark, just me and my zebra socks…

Take a little time to exercise!

 

 

  • ~ Make more facial oil cleanser by Tuesday. I’m almost outYes! And it feels sooooo good! 

 

  • ~ Do at least ONE thing every day just for myself – even if it’s just for a 5 minutes. I know that I did a few things for myself over the week, but I’m pretty sure a couple of days flew by without me giving thought to doing something for myself. 

 

This Week’s Goals ~

  • ~ Drink 60 oz. of water each day, and coconut water once or twice this week.
  • ~ Eat a healthy breakfast (or brunch) each morning.
  • ~ Take multivitamins each morning.
  • ~ Put on real clothes during the week, and post pictures to The Pleated Poppy’s What I Wore link-up.
  • ~ Work out for at least 10 minutes five times this week.
  • ~ Remove my old polish and apply new polish to my toes.
  • ~ Memorize. Work on James 1:1-4 with a group of friends.
  • ~ Do at least ONE thing for myself every day… just because.
  • ~ Tackle that one project I’ve been dreading.
  • ~ Go easy on myself and my injured hand.

 

What About You? ~

I’ll be sharing even more of my progress on Facebook and Instagram this week, and I’d love it if you joined me. It would be way more fun with you! Let’s find a second to actually take a minute, SIT DOWN today, and just breathe. Let’s put our health, our hearts, and our heads back on the to-do list – and let’s start taking better care of ourselves today!

*Hugs*

~ Ginger

 

*Linking up with Women With Intention and Coffee for Your Heart today!

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

Take a Little Time… Take 2

Take a Little Time for You! header

 

Happy Monday, friends! How did last week treat you? How did you treat YOURSELF? I hope that you’re taking a little bit of time for you! I love that we have this little community!

For the most part, this week went much better. I ate breakfast most mornings, I put on real clothes, and I enjoyed a fun Mommy Playdate with some friends. The one thing that I am going to change this week is to have specific – very specific – goals. I didn’t exercise at all this past week, and that’s because I kept putting it off.

I’ll do it tomorrow. I have plenty of time. I’m too tired today. I’ll be sore if I do it now. I don’t want to get sweaty. Yeah, I’ll do it tomorrow. 

Sure enough, the whole week slipped by and because I didn’t have an actionable goal, I didn’t have to live up to it. This week I am trying something different – each of my goals are specific and measurable. And I am making sure that I exercise for at least 10 minutes each day. I have gained about 5-7 pounds – just an educated guess, I haven’t weighed myself to be sure. It’s not much – but for me that’s a whole jeans size. I’d really love to get back to where my clothes fit and I feel better about myself – and I think in order to do that, I’m going to need to set measurable and doable goals for myself.

Is there something like this in your own life? Like me, have you been setting vague goals for yourself? Are you willing to work WITH me this week? I’d love to know that I’m not alone!

 

Last week’s goals ~

  • ~  Keep hydrated with water and coconut waterThis week I’m gonna kick it up a notch and set definite goals.
  • ~  Eat a healthy breakfast/brunch each morning. I did a better job of this – remembering/making time to eat every morning except Sunday. I wish I had snapped a picture of the yummy spinach/egg bake that my Beloved made this week. Delish!
  • ~  Get my heart pumping at least 3 days each week with exercise. I was pretty abysmal at this over the past week. I didn’t work out once. I got up nice and early to have a little quiet time before things got crazy around the house. I’m changing up my routine a bit so that I can get back on track with getting/staying healthy.
  • ~  Get dressed in REAL CLOTHES and not stay in my comfy sweatsI shared this picture on Facebook and Instagram. Child: “THAT’S what you’re wearing to church?!” No, but it is what moms wear until exactly 12. 4965 seconds until they walk out the door because they are so busy getting everyone else ready. Am I right? *wink* We were visiting a new church yesterday – I’m sure a bathrobe would’ve made quite an impression!

 

IMG_8614

 

 

IMG_8610 2

  • ~  Do TWO things every day just for me – (listen to a podcast, read a book, play the piano)I read some great books, mostly. I also played the piano, baked an apple crisp to share with friends just because it sounded good, and watched an episode of Call the Midwife on Netflix
  • ~  Make an appointment to see my counselor.
  • ~  Plan a “Mommy Playdate” with other grown-upsI was in charge of the activity/lesson for our homeschool co-op group’s meeting just for moms this month – so I used this time to have a little fun! There were 13 of us, and we played a hilarious game of Apples to Apples together! It was so much fun to be playing a game with other grownups! 
  • ~  Make a list of free or inexpensive ways we can all take a little time for ourselves to share here on the blogYes!!! Look for more news about this very soon!

101 Ways

  • ~  Get up early enough (5:30-6:00AM most days) to have a quiet time before the day begins for the rest of the houseYawn… Yep! I was able to get out of bed early enough every morning except yesterday (Sunday) to have a quiet time before the rest of the house began stirring – which really gave my a boost to my whole day! I’ll be adding in the element of exercise this next week – so we’ll see how that goes! 
  • ~  Curl up in bed with a book and my Beloved by 10pm most nights to get a good night’s sleep. Are we GoodReads buddies yet? Find awesome books and check out what your friends are reading! 

 

This week’s goals ~

  • ~ Drink 60 oz. of water each day, and coconut water at least twice this week.
  • ~ Eat a healthy breakfast (or brunch) each morning.
  • ~ Remove my old polish and apply new polish to my tootsies.
  • ~ Clean out my purse.
  • ~ Put on real clothes during the work week – stay away from my comfy sweats until after supper or over the weekend.
  • ~ Take multivitamins each morning.
  • ~ Visit my counselor once this week.
  • ~ Work out for at least 10 minutes EACH day.
  • ~ Make more facial oil cleanser by Tuesday. I’m almost out!
  • ~ Do at least ONE thing every day just for myself – even if it’s just for a 5 minutes.

 

How About You? ~

I’ll be sharing even more of my progress on Facebook and Instagram this week, and I’d love it if you joined me. It would be way more fun with you! Let’s find a second to actually SIT DOWN today and just breathe. Let’s put our health, our hearts, and our heads back on the to-do list – and let’s start taking better care of ourselves today!

*Fist bump*

~ Ginger

 

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

This & That… Links You’ll Love!

This & That

 

Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears – Happy Friday! I’ve wanted to do a weekly round-up here for quite a while – a place where we can share links, articles, videos, pictures – whatever made you smile/think/cry/laugh over the past week!

Here are some things that I didn’t want you to miss ~

 

Ginger and Crystal

*My friend Crystal – aka Money Saving Mom – is going to South Africa next week with Lisa-Jo Baker! Check out her exciting and heart-tugging post about how this dream is coming true! And be sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram to see pictures, videos, and stories of the beautiful families and community that they will be visiting!

 

 

DIY Blanket Scarf

*I’m not very crafty, but even I could probably pull this off! Check out this simple and AWESOME scarf! And there’s no sewing involved – so who’s going to the fabric store with me?!

 

 

Burn the candles

* Love this post from Shauna Niequist! It’s not about the candles, the lotion, or the wine… It’s about knowing and embracing the fact that you are LOVED and you are WORTH IT!

 

 

Angry eyebrows

* Kids say the darnedest things! A creative dad turned the funny things his 3-year-old daughter’s funny sayings into the best artwork ever!

 

 

An Intentional Future

* Check out my friend Alysha’s new series – Being Intentional At Home – and awesome giveaway! I won a pillow very similar in a previous giveaway – and it’s awesome! Hurry – the giveaway closes SOON!

 

 

Laundry Room

* I have a new laundry theme song!

 

On the blog ~

Take a Little Time for You! header* We’re sharing new ways to take a little time for us!

 

25 Lessons Learned from 25 Years of Marriage

*And my friend Tammy shared her list of 25 Lessons Learned in 25 Years of Marriage! What an awesome list!

 

Did you come across any great articles this week? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments below!

Have a wonderful weekend!

*Hugs*

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

25 Lessons Learned in 25 Years of Marriage

25 Lessons Learned from 25 Years of Marriage

 

My lovely friend Tammy recently shared a list on Facebook – 25 Important Lessons Learned in 25 Years of Marriage – and I was so inspired and challenged by her advice, that I asked her if I could share them with YOU!

This is good stuff, friends!

1. Nourish your faith individually, as a couple, and as a family – it will be the one thing that will get you through everything
2. Forgive
3. Let lots (and lots) of little things slide – perfection isn’t possible or necessary
4. Don’t let big issues consume your home – figure out a way to work through them
5. Dwell on things you appreciate about your spouse, not things you wish you could change
6. Remember relationships are valuable – things aren’t
7. You really do marry their family – be sure you love them too
8. Laugh a LOT
9. Take walks/hikes together
10. Play games and watch movies (or whatever you enjoy) as a family
11. Hug, kiss and say “I love you” often
12. Be each other’s best defender
13. Be a good caregiver
14. Work together – especially when you are getting ready to entertain or have yard work to do
15. Don’t let him do your laundry – this one I learned in the first week of marriage (bless his heart, he WAS trying to help and I’m sure all the small people that shop at Good Will appreciated my sweaters)
16. Encourage their relationships with other family members
17. Talk (and listen) to each other a lot
18. Present a united front with your child/children
19. Respect things that are important to the other person, even if they’re not important to you
20. Find a way to get away from “it all” – something as simple as a picnic in the country and flying kites can be a God-send
21. Be supportive of the other person’s job and interests
22. Don’t smack talk the other person’s team when you live in a house divided, which neither of us has ever done (at some point their team will beat yours – hopefully you won’t be freezing your fanny off at Arrowhead stadium when this does happen)
23. Find a good balance between doing things you enjoy together, doing things the other person likes even if you don’t, and being individuals
24. Don’t succumb to the debt monster and if you do, work hard (together) to defeat the beast
25. Continue to dream and plan for the future as a couple and dream big
 

My Beloved and I are still in the transitional newlywed stage. After the end of my first marriage, my heart’s desire is to tenderly cultivate and care for our marriage and family unit. Her advice is something that I am taking to heart – and will be pondering in the days to come for sure!

What lessons or tips YOU have learned in marriage? What would you add to the list? Nothing would make me happier than hearing your advice for other newlywed (or not so newlywed) couples out there! Let’s compile more advice to make an even bigger list of lessons learned from marriage! Let’s encourage each other today!

I am so thankful for each of you spending a little bit of your day with me!

*Big Hugs*

~ G

*Photo credit – Sledd Photography (The beautiful couple is my lovely sister-in-law & brother-in-law!)

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

A Happier, Healthier You ~ December

A Happier Healthier You - justoneoftheboys.com

Hello, friends! How was your month of November? Were you able to find ways to take care of YOU? I didn’t follow through with all of my goals – but now I know the areas where I need to try a little harder. This isn’t just a pampering session – it’s a way that we can remember to put our needs back on the to-do list, so we can take better care of our loved ones!

Your encouragement, support, and stories of how you are caring for yourself really inspired and challenged me this month! Let’s keep it up!

Limiting Sugar ~

Last month I set the goal of limiting sugar during November. While this was a good goal, I think I need to be a little more specific with myself! I DID limit it, but maybe not as much as I should have.

I have completely stopped using sugars in my tea, and I have replaced it with local honey. I became used to the taste, and now I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t miss using raw sugar in my morning tea any more!

Simple Ways to Take Care of Yourself TODAY!

I did start craving sugar one day – and I decided to quietly roast a few mini-marshmallows over a candle in the kitchen. It was a good way to satisfy my craving without going overboard. I probably only had three or four total. Shhhh…don’t tell my boys!

A Happier Healthier December marshmallow

I had a few Chew Spree candies during a movie night on the couch, and made a yummy Cool-Whip fruity salad for my family’s Thanksgiving meal, and had a sliver of the pumpkin pie my Beloved made last week – but that’s about it as far as sugars go.

I could have been better, but I’m learning to be glad for the progress that I am making. I am my own worst critic, so I need to give myself grace when I don’t do as much as I think I should.

Last Month’s Goals ~

  • Stay hydrated with water and coconut water I did a pretty good job, but there is always room for improvement. Next month I’ll try to up my daily water intake.
  • Eat a healthy meal each morning I should probably define healthy. Some mornings I eat a grapefruit or oatmeal. Other days it’s more of a protein-ish brunch.

A Happier Healthier December breakfast

  • Buy myself new socks to wear with boots for the winter. Hmm… I still need to do this, and fast. Another pair (older than at least one of my kids) developed a hole in the heel – so I cut them up to make boot cuffs!
  • Get my heart pumping with exercise at least 4 times each week. I didn’t do so great at this either. 
  • Get up early most mornings to enjoy quiet alone time before the busy day begins I’m reading Lysa TerKeurst’s new book, The Best Yes, during my early morning quiet time. 
  • File my nails and care for my cuticles – and polish them with fun colors. I painted my nails a few fun colors last month! I need to be better at filing and cuticles in December.

What I'm Into Nov 1

  • LIMIT SUGAR 
  • Have board game nights with the boys We taught Quinn, our 6-year-old, how to play Battleship this month – and he wiped the floor with me! Battleship tournaments, Super Mario Bros. championships, and Multiplication War duels abounded this month! We’re a game-loving family – and looking for ideas for other great games to add to our collection this Christmas!  
  • Curl up in bed with a book by 10pm most nights I was able to be curled up in bed early most nights. I shared HERE about the wonderful books I read. Definitely check out my favorite book of the month

A Happier Healthier December Bella

  • Write two special posts for the blog: Not Wasted Time, and Chapter 12 of Our Story I shared how forever can finally begin. I also shared the next two chapters in Our Story. (Click on the photos to view each story…)

Once upon a time

Chapter 12 ~ My New Friend

Chapter 13

 

This Month’s Goals ~

  • Keep hydrated with water and coconut water!
  • Unplug, relax, and enjoy our long-awaited honeymoon in HAWAII!!!!
  • Get dressed in real clothes, and not stay in my comfy sweats.
  • Get my heart pumping at least 4 days each week with exercise.
  • Do at least one thing every day just for me – play the piano, listen to a podcast, take a walk, call a friend, etc.
  • Eat a healthy breakfast/brunch each morning.
  • Take better care of my nails and rough feet – the purple pumice sponge is coming back out!
  • Get up early most mornings to enjoy quiet alone time before the busy day begins.
  • Curl up in bed or on the Story Chair with a book by 10pm most nights.
  • Do something special with each of our boys individually. This will be a busy month, but I’d like to have individual time with them.

What About You?

How do you show yourself grace as you grow as a person?

Does your family have a favorite board game? I’d love your recommendations!

What small things are you doing to start taking care of YOU? I would love to hear all about it!

Who’s with me? I LOVE our little community of friends helping and encouraging each other to take a little time for ourselves! I would be so thrilled if you would come on this journey with me!

I’ll be sharing pictures of my progress, and of our Hawaiian vacation), on Instagram and Facebook throughout the month! And even Twitter, even though I’m still pretty new at tweeting! Have you signed up to have my new posts delivered straight to your inbox yet? Just go to the Subscribe Now section right under the picture  on the right – and type in your email address. You won’t miss a thing, and you will make my whole day! It’s as easy as that!

Let’s get back to taking better care of our bodies, hearts, and minds – so we can better care for those that we love! Let’s finish out this year healthier than ever!

*hugs*

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

What I’m Into ~ November 2014 Edition

It’s here! It’s here! The November Edition of What I’m Into is finally here! I love this link-up hosted by the lovely Leigh Kramer! Fix yourself a cup of hot cocoa, curl up in front of the fireplace, and check out the other awesome link-ups this weekend. That’s what I’m doing right now!

Our Little Corner of the World

A little laundry time…

What I'm Into Nov laundry

A little hot tea in my jammies…

What I'm Into Nov pajamas

A little writing here, a little bling there, a little dark polish that’s perfect for fall…

What I'm Into Nov 1

A few science experiments… (Pop Rocks and Sprite)

science experiment

And a whole lot of snuggling…

What I'm Into Nov Snuggles

Between the Pages

What I'm Into Nov As You Wish

As You Wish, by Cary Elwes – Favorite book of the month! I listened to this book with our Audible credit – and I can’t recommend the audio edition of it enough. Cary Elwes, (aka Westley) takes us on the journey to filming the much-beloved classic movie The Princess Bride. I love this audio version – Cary Elwes does incredible accents, and most of the movie cast lent their voices to reading their own memories from this amazing movie! I laughed until I cried during stories about Andre the Giant and Miracle Max! It has pretty clean language. Fair warning – it may have contained the d-word (as my boys call it) once or twice, but my two oldest boys have enjoyed listening to it with me as we cook and clean up in the kitchen, and when we’re in the car running errands. If you loved the movie (I still haven’t read the actual Princess Bride book yet!), I’m betting that you’ll also love As You Wish!

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces that Stand in the Way of True Inspiration, by Ed Catmull – This was a fascinating look into Pixar – the history, the ups and downs, and the things that have made it great! I’m not a boss in business, but it gave me some ideas for cultivating creativity and teamwork in my own family!

Sheltering Rain, by Jojo Moyes – I’m a big Moyes fan, and my friend Jan was nice enough to lend me her copy of this book! It wasn’t my favorite book by this author – that title still goes to Me Before You – but it was still enjoyable.

Yes please

Yes Please, by Amy Poehler –  I feel like I’ve been waiting for this book for years! It was an awesome look into her early life, her work on SNL and Parks and Rec, and laugh-out-loud funny!

Food: A Love Story, by Jim Gaffigan – Looking for more laughs? Check out Jim Gaffigan’s newest book! I listened to this on a road trip, and he kept me in stitches – and made me pretty hungry!

On my Nightstand

I’m about to dive into several books this month:

A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table, by Molly Wizenberg

Delancey: A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage, by Molly Wizenberg

#GIRLBOSS, by Sophia Amoruso

Save the Cat, by Blake Snyder

What are you reading this month?

Screen Time

My Beloved and I went to see the new Hunger Games movie on opening night with my siblings. The six of us plus a few of their friends really enjoyed the first installment of Mockingjay, and I can’t believe we have to wait a full year before we get to see the second half! Mockingjay was my least favorite book in the trilogy, but I was pretty impressed with the movie. Go figure!

We also saw Jon Stewart’s directorial debut – Rosewater.  Wow. The true story of a journalist who was imprisoned and tortured while covering the 2009 elections in Iran. We were the only two people in the theatre, which was pretty sad considering this is still going on all over the world.

Interstellar – Whoa. Buckle your seat belts, folks. This movie is a wild ride! I can’t tell you more than that – but it left me wanting to see it again!

Top Gear and Top Gear US are huge favorites in our house full of men. Joe and our boys have been watching past episodes whenever they get the chance – and I enjoy watching it, too!

And we’re still catching up on this season of Homeland. Let me just say this – If the Taliban lays one finger on Inigo Montoya (Saul), so help me, I’m never watching it again!

On the Blog

Once upon a time

I shared how forever can finally begin!

Chapter 12 ~ My New Friend

My New Friend ~ Chapter 12 of Our Story

Chapter 13

She Began to Twirl Once More ~ Chapter 13 of Our Story

Building Your Nest Together - Williams Sonoma

What I wish I’d known all those years ago about registering for my wedding! Don’t make the same mistakes I did!

Coming Up

We’re going on our honeymoon! After being married for four years, we will finally get away together, relax, recharge, and celebrate the wild roller coaster of our life together so far! Hawaii, here we come!

How about you?

What have you been into this past month? Have you read any good books? Seen any must-watch movies? What shows are you watching these days?

I’d love to hear all about it!

Have you signed up to have my new posts delivered straight to your inbox yet? Just go to the Subscribe Now section to the right – and you won’t miss a thing! It’s as easy as that – and nothing makes me happier! Don’t forget – you can also find me on FacebookInstagramPinterest, & Twitter!

Until next time,

*Hugs*

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter

Happier, Healthier You ~ November

A Happier Healthier You - justoneoftheboys.com Oh, how I have missed our HAPPIER, HEALTHIER YOU posts! Why did I stop sharing my goals and updates? To be honest, I was having a hard time near the end of my Beloved’s deployment. I wasn’t taking very good care of myself by then, but I had been doing what I could to get through those last rough deployment days. The weight of the stress, fear, and trying to be tough really wore me down – and I felt as though I crawled across the finish line when he wrapped his arms around me when I waited for him at the airport.

We pretty much hibernated for the two weeks that he was home – and I loved every minute of it! We played with the boys, had family movie nights, snuggled, and soaked up the time that we were all together. We even started designing a piece of furniture that he is now building!

I realized lately that even though I have been keeping up a few of the habits I developed when we were sharing our goals and progress together, I have fallen behind on other things.

Working out? Nope.

Early morning quiet time? Not happening.

Staying away from sugar? Umm…Excuse me…while I…finish…chewing this TWIX bar…from a trick-or-treat basket…

It’s time to get back to it – and I hope that you’ll join me! Let’s get back to encouraging and challenging each other to take better care of ourselves! Our loved ones need us!

 This Month’s Goals ~

  • Stay hydrated with water and coconut water
  • Eat a healthy meal each morning
  • Buy myself new socks to wear with boots for the winter
  • Get my heart pumping with exercise at least 4 times each week
  • Get up early most mornings to enjoy quiet alone time before the busy day begins
  • File my nails and care for my cuticles – and polish them with fun colors
  • LIMIT SUGAR
  • Have board game nights with the boys
  • Curl up in bed with a book by 10pm most nights
  • Write two special posts for the blog: Not Wasted Time, and Chapter 12 of Our Story

What about you?

Who’s with me? I super duper missed our little community of friends helping and encouraging each other to take a little time for ourselves! I would be so thrilled if you would come on this journey with me!

I’ll be sharing pictures of my progress on Instagram and Facebook throughout the month! And even Twitter, if I can figure the darn thing out! Have you signed up to have my new posts delivered straight to your inbox yet? Just go to the Subscribe Now section right under the picture  on the right – and type in your email address. You won’t miss a thing, and you will make my whole day! It’s as easy as that!

Let’s get back to taking better care of our bodies, hearts, and minds – so we can better care for those that we love! Let’s finish out this year healthier than ever!

*hugs*

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookPin on PinterestPrint this pageTweet about this on Twitter
I’m Ginger ~
I'm a wife to my Beloved, mom of three boys, bookworm, survivor of a broken heart, and Kansas Girl. It is my desire to encourage you. No matter what storm you're going through right now, you are not alone. I promise.
Join the fun!

MY GIFT TO YOU!