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What's the big deal about Young Living

A Modern Day Parable

footprints

Once there was a mother of, let’s say, 8 children.

This mother was a very busy lady, with very active children. Even though she was aware that she should keep her eyes on the end goal, the big picture, she often inadvertently, and to the detriment of her family, found herself focused on short term goals. This tendency played out in a very tangible way one blustery, winter day.

A soccer game had concluded on a bitterly cold, windy November evening. With her children following along dutifully behind, bundled up in coats, hats, and gloves, the mother trudged through one empty soccer field after another toward the large parking complex.

She kept her head down, only looking up occasionally, to keep the wind from whipping in her face. Finally, her feet left the soggy sod and reached crunchy gravel of the parking lot. She looked up to find the big white maxi van, usually easily spotted amongst normal size vehicles.

The van was nowhere.

She looked one way. She looked the other.

Finally she saw the problem. While walking with her head down, she had veered so far off course that she was now 2 parking lots away from her intended destination. Because of her mistake, she had to walk just as far to correct her path as she did when she started the journey back at the benches.

She groaned and altered her course. She strengthened her resolve. This time she kept her eyes up and faced the wind head on. This time she reached her destination and did not waver right or left.

Does this story sound familiar to you?

During my high school days, my drill team team instructor used to shout through her bull horn from the stands, “IF THE BLIND LEAD THE BLIND, YOU WILL ALL FALL IN THE DITCH!!!” when the leader of our 50 member team would carelessly strut past the 50 yard marker, where we were supposed to turn one at a time, one behind the other, and march with precision to center field.

Of course, that meant every single girl would end up in the wrong place, all because the leader missed her mark.

Sometimes we moms are so busy focused on when our toddler will ever pee in the toilet, or our 2nd grader will ever learn to read, or our 9th grader will ever understand exponents, or our high school senior will ever get into college that we forget our real destination.

Sometimes it’s even easy to forget that those milestones aren’t a destination at all. They are simply milestones. Markers on the way to the real goal.

When I’m frustrated by life’s little daily frustrations, backed up plumbing, car trouble, cranky children, it’s so easy to put my head down and try to plow through, just get through that one day, without looking up.

The trouble is those days tend to pile up, end to end. And before we know it, we look up and we are just as far from our destination as if we had never started, with our children following along behind.

As for us, our long term family goal is to be together in eternity. On days, or weeks, or months, when we find we have our heads down and our eyes not focusing on the goal, we readjust and remind ourselves of where we want to be heading.

Are you headed toward your goal, Mama? Your children are following you. What destination are you taking them to?

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Trying Out the HTC M8 Harman/Kardon Edition Sprint Phone

I participated in an Influencer Activation Program on behalf Influence Central for Sprint. I received sample devices to facilitate this review.

HTC M8 Harman/Kardon

I was so excited to be invited to be a #SprintMom and try out the new HTC M8 Harman/Kardon Edition Sprint phone!

I was able to visit the Sprint store and hear straight from a rep all the cool features of this phone. Here are a few of the things that caught my attention:

  • It turns on with a simple double tap on the screen.
  • When receiving a phone call, you can answer by picking up the phone. No pressing buttons or swiping.
  • All metal parts
  • Screen replacement free, for up to one year
  • Spotify Premium is a standard feature.
  • The phone supports HD music tracks, so the sound is amazing!
  • Beautiful, crystal clear photography
  • FUN, built-in photo editing app

100MEDIA$IMAG0047

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You can colorize, cartoonize, 3D-ize, and lots more fun stuff.

100MEDIA$IMAG0052

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These are all straight out of the camera!

I was actually sorta bummed that I already have a phone, so I passed this one along to my 17yo son. You see, we have each been holding out, waiting for the other to buy him his own phone.

I kept saying we don’t pay for teens’ phones, and he kept saying he didn’t need a phone. The trouble is we can’t keep in contact with each other when he is out and about, and his friends keep calling me to see if he is available to hang out. So, we have both been waiting for the other to cave.

photo 1

And now that I have this brand new, awesome phone to test out, well, it just made sense to let him have it. The good news is that it comes with a $50/month, unlimited data, NO COMMITMENT service plan!

So, he is stoked to have a phone with an amazing sound system, and I am relieved to be able to text him to ask him to bring home milk after the movie. It’s a win/win!

Do your teens have phones? 

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Helpful Links – Homeschooling and Parenting

I frequently get emails or private messages on Facebook asking my advice on different topics I have already written on, like homeschooling and parenting.

Since I don’t have time to answer each inquiry individually, I though I would give you all a roundup of helpful links with my post popular posts on those topics.

Homeschooling

Parenting

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Parenting Mistakes I’ve Made {The Series}

Parenting Mistakes

If you’ve been reading here recently, you know I have started a series admitting some of the parenting mistakes I regret. My hope is to encourage you in your parenting journey and give you hope that you can recover from your mistakes.

One of the mistakes I made, in which I had only the best intentions, was isolating my children until I could see that one of them was actually depressed about having no friends.

Now, I don’t mean that she was sad one day about all the girls at church not including her in a slumber party.

I mean that for a period of 4-5 years there were very few kids at church besides our kids, and I did not go out of my way to invite those kids to interact with my own kids.

You see, I had read and believed that brothers and sisters could and should be best friends. And I still do honestly believe that they really can and should be the best of friends.

The problem was that I interpreted this to mean that they did not need any other friends.

And my sensitive daughter began to feel like her brother and sisters liked her and spent time with her because they didn’t have any other choice. They had to be her friend. They lived with her. They didn’t choose to be her friend. And she didn’t have anyone in her life who liked her because they simply wanted to spend time with her.

One day she came to me in tears because she had no friends. None. Zero. And when I comforted her, I couldn’t argue with that fact. When I tried to think of who she could count as a friend, I couldn’t come up with a single one.

When she confided to me that she was having severe anxiety issues, trouble sleeping, frequent stomach aches, grinding her teeth at night, etc. all because she wondered if she was worthy to have people like her, I was heartbroken!

What had I done???

I couldn’t believe I hadn’t noticed her anxiety issues before she brought it to my attention, and I was so sad that she felt that there was no one in the world who wanted to spend time with her by their own choice. And all this happened because I hadn’t seen the value of including outside people in her life.

I immediately set about figuring out how I could correct the mistake I had made. I invited friends over, signed her up for sports, and encouraged her to participate in youth group activities. I also asked her to forgive me for making such a hurtful mistake.

It wasn’t as easy as that though, since her self esteem was very low about how valuable she was as a friend. It took a couple of years for her to gain the confidence to feel like she was valued as a person to those outside her family.

The lesson I learned from this was huge for me. My children needed to know and experience that they are liked by those who are not required to be nice to them. They needed to know they are liked simply because they are fun to be around. And for us this needed to come from outside the family.

Now, I’m not saying every family should automatically take the steps I did and start signing your children up for more activities. (That could cause as much stress as no activities.) I’m saying pay attention to each child’s needs. Notice signs of stress and depression. Ask questions.

What is right for our family may not be right for your family. What is right for one child may not be right for every child.

But if you find that a child is suffering needlessly because of a parenting mistake on your part, ask them to forgive your and change your course.

My hope in sharing this story is to warn anyone else from making this same mistake. Your parenting journey will not be mistake-free, but we can learn from our mistakes and correct them to be better parents than we were before.

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Train Up a Child eBook Bundle

How to Manage Your Mouth for Kids {eBook}

My ebook “How to Manage Your Mouth – FOR KIDS, A 30 Day Wholesome Talk Challenge” is included in the Bundle of the Week, THIS WEEK ONLY.

You can get my ebook (regular price $4.99), plus 4 others, on the topic of training up a child for only $7.40 THIS WEEK ONLY!

Sign up for Bundle of the Week here to get the “train up a child” bundle.

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Learning From Parenting Mistakes – When You Suspect Lying

This post is part of a series on parenting mistakes I have made. I am sharing those here in hopes that some of you may be encouraged that you are not alone in making mistakes and also to hopefully keep you from making these same mistakes.

Parenting Mistakes

One of the mistakes I regret the most happened when I strongly suspecting one of my children was lying. The thing is, I had no way of proving it, just a very strong suspicion. Here’s what happened:

Just after my son had been playing alone in the backyard, I noticed that the concrete bird bath had been toppled over and broken into pieces. I immediately suspected that he had something to do with it, so I called him into my room and questioned him about it.

He immediately and confidently, too confidently, I thought, said that he didn’t do it.

I felt certain that he had done it and was lying to keep out of trouble. After all he had just been out there, and everyone else was playing elsewhere. Who else could have done it? It had to be him. Circumstantial evidence was supporting my suspicions.

I went over all the above details and told him I knew he was lying and he had better confess. He stuck to his story and I stuck to my guns.

After a very lengthy session of “You are lying” and “No, I’m not,” he finally confessed, although very grudgingly.

Years later, through many bitter tears he told me I had actually coerced him into lying. He had not really done it, but in order to stop my torturous accusations, he lied and told me he had. (We together concluded our large dog must have done it.)

Can you imagine my horror and shame? My own son could not trust me to protect him. From ME.

It took time and many tearful apologies from me to heal the wounds and mistrust that I caused him through my accusations.

Because of that incident and the damage done, my policy now is that unless I can prove a misdeed with conclusive evidence beyond a shadow of a doubt, I do not accuse.

I will ask for a confession, and I pray aloud for the guilty party to be racked with so much guilt that they will confess and repent.

Recently, we had an issue of unauthorized cutting of the baby’s hair. I knew she couldn’t have done it herself, because a big gap was neatly cut in the back. No one would admit doing it, but the baby repeatedly placed the blame on a certain sister. I was pretty sure the baby was right, but since I never got a confession, I did not accuse.

But every night during bedtime prayers, I asked God to lead the guilty party to confess and repent. She never did, and I have had to let it go. It is so important to me to never repeat the situation I put my son through, that I am willing to let a crime go unpunished, rather than falsely accuse a child ever again.

I hope to never repeat the awful mistake I made years ago, and I pray I won’t make other mistakes that have lasting effects like that one.

The thing is, now I have enough years of parenting experience that I know mistakes are inevitable. It’s the humility we have about those mistakes that can be a teachable moment for our children.

Of course, we don’t want to make mistakes, but when they happen, we can learn, along with our children, about the power of forgiveness and God’s amazing grace.

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What's the big deal about Young Living