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For most of my life, I have craved sleep.

I cannot remember a time when I have sprung out of bed.

When I was a teen, I can remember my mother dragging my feet out of bed, so that I was half-on the bed and half-off. I could continue to sleep that way just fine.

When we were newlyweds, my husband would try to kiss me awake. My mouth would try to say leave me alone and let me sleep, but my groggy head and limp body continued to doze on. Sometimes the smell of fresh coffee would bring me to my senses. Then the kisses were welcome and exchanged.

As a young mother, I never rose before my children. I always waited until I had to get up. That was usually when my husband Todd was leaving for work and the kids were up and raring to go. I simply couldn’t stay in bed any longer.

Then something changed.

I turned 40.

I couldn’t sleep well any more. Continue reading Becoming a Morning Person

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Read Part 1 here
Read Part 2 here

Yep, the world is going downhill quickly. Some would say that “it’s going to hell in a handbasket!” But frankly, our world has been on a collision course for disaster since the fall. We might say that there has never been a time like this, but on the other hand, there were some pretty awful times in history past too. You’ve read about the Greeks, the Romans, the Assyrians… They lived in some pretty twisted societies too. So, I guess it’s safe to say that there is nothing new under the sun. Solomon spoke truth, wise man that he was!

But still, my husband and I are working very hard (in this place, America, in this time, the 21st century) to keep our home a safe place, a sanctuary, for ourselves and our children, from the wiley ways of the devil and the corrupt world at large. We cannot insulate them altogether, but our children need to know that we are standing up for them, fighting hard to keep them safe and deliver them into adulthood not too stained by the world around them.

How can we keep words and images that are displayed so freely across the World Wide Web from splashing across our computers and devices?

Continue reading Keeping Our Kids Safe Online, Pt 3

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Read Part 1 here

Are you a mama bear? I sure am. If I think there is a threat to my kids, the hair bristles on my back and my eyes scan the field until I target the danger. Okay, so I don’t have hair on my back, but I can relate to that feeling of tension and defense. Can you?

When it comes to keeping our kids safe, the greatest danger right now is also one of our most prized conveniences – the Internet. Frankly, it would be extremely difficult for our family to live without it, especially with our business that relies on online sales. But we also love the Internet for school. It has become our encyclopedia, our dictionary, our photo album, our math tutor, our translator, our word finder, our stationary and our post office.

We live in a brave, new world and over the years, we have learned how to work with this beast that we have brought into our home.

Here are 4 ways to tame the beast in your home:

Continue reading Keeping Our Kids Safe Online, Pt 2

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“She is clothed with strength and dignity; and she laughs without fear of the future… She carefully watches everything in her household… Her children stand and bless her.” Proverbs 31:25-28

The Proverbs 31 woman is a mama bear! She gets fierce when the safety of her family is threatened. Shhh… listen… can you hear it? Probably not, but there is a lurking evil at your door. He is a serpent and he is seeking to steal, kill and destroy. It’s time to wake up! We must protect our children.

While we may be raising the most innocent, respectful, God-honoring, parent-honoring, and virtuous children, the enemy has no favorites. He is attempting to take them all out. Not just some, not just those that aren’t well-supervised, but all. Continue reading Keeping Our Kids Safe Online, Pt 1

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This graceful woman holding the baby, drinking coffee, checking email and helping with schoolwork is not me. I am not really sure, actually, if she is real or myth. Because I am definitely not that stereotypical woman who can multi-task well. In fact, when I do, I usually make a big mess of something.

If I talk on the phone while making dinner, I will either mix the ingredients in wrong OR burn the chow, neither outcome very well appreciated by my family. Continue reading Multi-Tasking vs. Time-Blocking

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Saying “No” is a very hard thing to do, especially if you consider yourself a nice person. Nice people accommodate. Nice people serve. Nice people sacrifice. Are these the tapes that you play over and over again in your mind?

These are actually untrue statements. It’s time to rethink how we should respond when we are asked to do something, especially something of a worthy nature. Because it’s easy to say “no” to drugs, right? But it’s hard to say “no” when someone is asking you for help.

First of all, we need to realize that we are finite people. We truly can’t do everything, as much as we might think we can. Or wish we could. We are all given the same 24 hours in every day, the same 7 days in every week, etc.

Let’s get in the habit of asking ourselves these 3 questions when we need to determine whether or not we should say “yes” to a request.

1. Do I have free or flexible time to accommodate the request? Perhaps we are asked to do something during a time slot that is dedicated to another task, such as caring for our own families in some way.


2. Am I the only one that can do this particular task? If we are asked to set-up for an event or drive someone to the airport, determine whether you are the ONLY one who can do this, or if there are others who might have less commitments, greater flexibility, etc.

Continue reading Learning to Say No

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I have struggled with sleep issues for the past 4-5 years and only in these last few weeks, since around the beginning of the year, have I been getting regular, consistent sleep. However, I did have a bad night with just 4 hours of sleep last night and because of this, I can more easily identify how sleep deprivation affects my thinking and my judgment. (In fact, I should wait 24 hours before posting this just in case it makes absolutely no sense!).

Since I am now getting used to 7-8 hours of sleep each night, I understand why good sleep is so important, when contrasted with a night of about 4 hours.

Here’s what I have noticed: Continue reading Why Sleep is Important

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When it comes right down to it, I’m a rather lazy person. My dad informed me of this many times during my childhood and I have internalized it. My husband tells me this isn’t true, but I do enjoy a lazy day reading in front of a roaring fire in the winter or lounging around the pool in the summer. I don’t know whether I am truly lazy or not, but I do know that I don’t like exercise or once a month cooking. Too much effort.

This is a “how I did it” post since so many people have asked me about this topic. Last year, I lost 30 pounds. I lost this weight between March and July. I had been struggling with an extra 20-30 pounds for about 8 years. Sometimes I would lose some of the weight, but then I would gain it back, along with an extra pound or two while I was at it.

It felt hopeless, but I believe that I finally cracked the code to successful weight loss and maintenance last spring. Here’s what I did. You can do this too! Continue reading The Lazy Person’s Way to Weight Loss

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We are all creatures of habit. I have decided that I must have an addictive personality. I drink coffee every morning, play Words with Friends every night and have watched every episode of Monk… yes, all 125 of them.

My kids laugh when they see the latest “game” I’ve become interested in and it can be rather ridiculous, I do agree. Truly, what can be more wasteful than spending an hour popping bubbles or lining up bricks on an iPad screen. Continue reading Habits and Routines – the Addiction to Good Things

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