Just in Case

There are a lot of minimalists who will tell you “just in case” is not a good reason to keep something. I agree with this most of the time, but I have found a few items that are helpful to have extras of “just in case” an unfortunate situation arises. 

5 items that are nice to have just in case…..

Towels – When your child throws up, it’s nice to have extra towels for cleaning up and laying on the bed “just in case” it happens again. It’s also nice to have extra towels when your water heater leaks or a pipe bursts.

Black Dress/Sports Coat – These are nice to have when an event comes up suddenly and you need something dressy. The last thing you want to do is go shopping before a funeral.

Toothbrushes – Ever accidentally drop your toothbrush in the toilet or find that your child has taken it outside to clean his toys? What about when a guest visits and has forgotten a toothbrush? They don’t take up much space. I like to have extras.

Spare Umbrella – I can’t tell you how many times I have found myself sitting in my car reaching for my umbrella, only to realize I left it at home in a tote. I now have one that stays in the house and one that stays in the car. 

Spare Clothes in the Car – This is mainly for little ones, but I don’t think it would hurt grown ups to have some extras as well. Accidents happen…someone can’t “hold it” any longer, gets sick, has a bloody nose, spills food, etc. It’s so nice to have spare clothes, especially when your destination is not home. (It’s also nice to have extra plastic bags to store the wet/dirty clothes in).

What do you keep just in case? I’d love to hear about it.

Until next time…..be well!

Lori

Sundays at the Lake Newsletter – September 2019

Hello! I hope this newsletter finds your heart and soul well.

In an attempt to share information in a simplistic style, I am going to “steal” the format of Austin Kleon’s newsletter. Mr. Kleon is the author of Steal Like an Artist, Show Your Work and Keep Going. If you are a creative, I encourage you to check out his books. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

Here are 10 things that are currently bringing me enjoyment or value in no particular order.

1. In my last post I mentioned Mel Robbins‘ Audible Original, Get Control of Your Life. This audiobook and printable workbook have given me direction and motivation to get moving on my goals. Additionally, I have found myself being far more productive. Next, I plan on reading her book, The 5 Second Rule

2. Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries on Netflix. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching Phryne Fisher, Australia’s leading lady detective, solve mysteries. Netflix describes her as a glamorous and thoroughly modern woman of the 1920s. I love a good murder mystery, a history lesson, and fabulous costumes. Here is a Pinterest page just about the costumes. 

3. hope*writers Tuesday Teaching – these mini-workshops with editors, agents, authors, and professionals in marketing, have been invaluable. To get information directly from professionals who are currently writing or in the writing business, has encouraged me and given me more direction than I think I could get anywhere else. I was so excited to finally to be able to tune in live last week with Jo Saxton. Looking forward to watching the ones I missed and tuning in to future teachings.

4. Water, fruits, and vegetables – When I make the good stuff easily accessible (cut up in a bowl on the counter) I will eat it! When I load up on the good stuff, there seems to be less room and less desire for the bad stuff.

5. Exercise – I am wanting to lose some pounds and firm up my muscles so I can be healthy and feel comfortable in my clothes. I started out walking, swimming, and doing water aerobics. I have also taken a liking to Jenny Fisher’s 15 minute workouts. You can find her on Facebook and Instagram. I’m trying a Pilates class next week. I’m not really sure what you do in Pilates, but as long as there are no choreographed dance steps I should be ok. I’m very uncoordinated. Long ago when I did Jazzercise, I was always about 4 steps behind everyone else and going the wrong way.

6. Playing Lego City Undercover with my son – This has been so much fun for both of us.  Two can play at once as you go undercover to hunt down an escaped criminal. If you are looking for a fun action game that doesn’t have cursing, sex, and gore, check this one out. 

7. My cast iron skillet. I love this thing and even though I have to wash it by hand and coat it with vegetable oil, I use it nearly every day. Cook, clean, repeat. It’s great for everything from chicken to cornbread.

8. Pilot Precise V5 RT pens – I’m a little obsessed with pens. Well, with office supplies in general. I first found one of these pens in my husband’s truck and although, I typically don’t like a fine tip pen, I love the way this one flows on the paper!

9. By His Grace Podcast – The multi-talented Misty Phillip interviews women who share how they were able to overcome seasons of adversity with God’s grace. I look forward to each new episode and have never been disappointed. If you are struggling, here you will find that you are not stuggling alone. Episodes are typically 30 minutes or less.

10. Jeff Goins‘ book, You are a Writer (So Start Acting Like One). This book is a quick read, yet chock full of information you will benefit from on your journey as a writer. It is a great resource for beginning writers. One of my favorite quotes from the book is, “Believe you are already what you want to be. And then starting acting like it.” Get your highlighter ready. I guarantee you will be taking lots of notes!

I hope there is something from this list you will find enjoyable or valuable. If you do please let me know. I’d love to hear from you.

Until next time, be well.

Lori

Be Well Heart and Soul participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to you.

Scale Down

“Whoa!! It seems my pants have shrunk! Why are they suddenly so hard to button? I bet I put them in the dryer too long.”

Nope. 

According to the scale I rarely step on, I have passed my “can’t go there again” number and need to make some immediate changes!

My body tends to stay in a range that I am satisfied with as long as I keep my exercise and eating at a moderate level. I’ve done great all summer and was feeling pretty good in my clothes. However, with back to school craziness and trying to adjust to a new routine it appears I have surpassed moderate and achieved extreme levels of eating and not moving. My previous work routine had something scheduled nearly every minute of the day. My new, more flexible, schedule has given me time to begin a love affair with junk food, my couch and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries. Now, it’s time to break up!

Luckily, I know exactly how to get this problem back under control. I do it every time I start getting closer to the “can’t go there again” number. This is the first time in years that I have passed that number. 

The solution is not rocket science, just 4 words: eat less, move more. Here’s the problem, I’ve been saying I’m going to eat less and move more for a couple of weeks but haven’t. 

While folding laundry, loading the dishwasher, and sitting in the carpool line waiting to pick up my son, I’ve been listening to Mel Robbins’ Audible Original, “Take Control of Your Life” and I’m learning WHY I’m not doing anything about my muffin top (it’s actually starting to look more like a souffle) and giving me strategies to get me moving. Kinda the same way she motivated me to get up earlier and stop hitting snooze. 

Yesterday, I took my first step. I actually took several steps. I walked over 2 miles and worked out in the pool for an hour and it felt great. Today, I walked over 2 miles again and tomorrow I’ll go to the pool. The number on the scale hasn’t moved much but I feel a sense of accomplishment and I don’t want to ruin that with cookies and ice cream. 

If you are feeling stuck or your life doesn’t feel like its going in the direction you want, check out Mel’s audiobook and printable workbook. It might give you some insight as to why you are not moving forward or why you are moving backward and give you simple steps to make changes. 

Until next time …be well!

Lori

Be Well Heart and Soul participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to the reader.

Musical Message

In my last post, I wrote, “I keep second guessing myself, but then remember that when God calls you to do something, it’s not necessarily going to be easy. Of course, then I second guess the calling!!”

Not long after I that, I was driving to the store and the song “Reason” by Unspoken came on the radio. I felt like God was sending me a musical message, a confirmation. I sat in the parking lot, downloaded the song, and read over the lyrics. 

“But God has a plan, a purpose in this. You are His child so don’t you forget.

He put that hunger in your heart. He put that fire in your soul.

His love is the reason to keep on believing.

When you feel like giving up, when you feel like giving in…..

His love is the reason, to keep on believing.”

I have to believe this burning desire to write is what I’m being called to do. 

I’ll confess, I’ve been somewhat reluctant and even embarrassed to tell people that I quit my paying job with good benefits to write for fear they will think I’m crazy. Also, because being a writer doesn’t seem like a real job until you actually get paid or can show someone a book with your name on the cover. (I’m working on that!)

Luckily, my writing group, hope*writers, lets me know I am not alone in my thinking. Additionally, there are several authors who have written books on this very topic…Jeff Goins, Anne Lamott, and Stephen King to name a few I’m reading now.

So, with God in my corner and fellow writers cheering me on, I think about a quote by Jessica Honegger, “When you’ve got a vision, you don’t have time to wait around for your fears to vanish before you start moving.”

So, I guess I’ll just tuck my fears away and keep moving and keep believing.

If you are in a similar situation, I sincerely hope that you won’t second guess yourself and quit on your vision. 

“Life is going by very quickly and if you’re not careful, you’re gonna be 80 years old and have spent your life wishing that you’d gotten your work done.” Anne Lamott

Until next time…..be well.

Lori

Be Well Heart and Soul participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to the reader.

Being Brave

In my last post, I talked about being brave and writing more authentically, despite my fears of feeling exposed and vulnerable. Sometimes writing the words seems hard and I want to quit because it requires stepping out into the public eye. My introverted self doesn’t like to be in the spotlight. I’m the person who thinks the background singer or the drummer has the best job….the one in the background!! 

I keep second guessing myself, but then remember that when God calls you to do something, it’s not necessarily going to be easy. Of course, then I second guess the calling!! 

Putting words on paper (or a computer screen) doesn’t seem exceptionally hard, but every single word is like a little piece of yourself, something you created being sent out there for people to read and judge. 

Luckily, I have come across a woman whose bravery is so big it makes me feel silly about my fears. Her bravery inspires me to move forward and keep writing. Her name is Lizzie Velasquez. Lizzie is a worldwide motivational speaker and author. She has a TEDtalk with over 9 million views and an amazing documentary. I don’t know Lizzie personally, but from what I have seen, despite her tiny body (due to a syndrome that keeps her from gaining weight), she has a huge personality. She is smart and funny and I’d let her come style my closet any day! Plus, she is a Texan girl like me.

When Lizzie was in high school, she came across a YouTube video entitled, “The World’s Ugliest Woman.” She clicked on the link and was shocked to see images of herself! She was crushed after reading hundreds of hateful comments calling her a monster, saying that her parents should have aborted her, or that she should kill herself! After many, many tears, her sadness eventually turned into anger and she fought back in a most brave way. She began her own YouTube channel! Talk about being in the spotlight. She should be called the BRAVEST woman in the world!

Lizzie decided not to let her outward appearance or negative comments define her. She said she would use those comments to fuel a fire and move forward to become a better person. She wanted to fight back with her accomplishments and use negativity as a ladder to achieve her goals. You know what? It worked!! 

I encourage you to watch her TEDtalk, her documentary and visit her YouTube channel. I have no doubt, you will be moved and inspired by her honesty and yes, her bravery. 

In the words of Lizzie Velasquez, “Brave starts here!”

Thanks Lizzie!  

Until next time…..be well and be brave!

Lori

Just wanted to let you know that Be Well Heart and Soul participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to the reader.

Into the Deep End

My son is learning to swim. He is now able to cross over the ropes into the deep end (closely supervised!) without a life jacket. He boldly jumps in and bubbles back up to the surface wearing expressions of excitement, uncertainty, and a little bit of fear. He takes a breath, puts his face in the water, swims to the edge, climbs the ladder and goes in again. His strokes are still clumsy but he is making great progress.

As a writer, I’ve been avoiding crossing over to the deep end. It’s safe over here in the shallow end where my feet can touch the bottom, writing about topics like laundry, cooking, great deals I found on Amazon, and what I’m reading. Every now and then, with great trepidation, I move a little closer to the deep end and publish something that requires a bit of vulnerability, but not quite over the ropes, where I’m more susceptible…..to drown. 

I have poured out my heart writing pages and pages about anxiety and panic attacks, feeling isolated without a circle of friends, introversion, dealing with life’s unexpected curve balls, not living up to expectations, and abandoning crazy dreams for something safe…..all the topics that require me to drift into open water allowing all my imperfections and struggles to be exposed but I have not published them.

Brene’ Brown, vulnerability expert, says, “Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it.” 

So I am just going to have to jump in and experience the uncertainty and fear along with the excitement because I feel called to share. Maybe what I write will resonate with at least one person and let them know they are not alone.

And if I feel like I’m going under, if the vulnerability feels too heavy, I’ll just take a breath, put my face in the water and swim….even if my strokes are clumsy.

Is it July Already?

Hello and Happy July!

Sundays at the Lake is my version of a newsletter. I’m hoping it will be more consistent as I focus on writing. I started this blog just over a year ago and I’ve loved it. I appreciate everyone who has taken the time to read, follow, like and/or comment. Thank you. Thank you.

I’m not sure what happened to June. It seems like it came and went in a flash. I spent most of the month making the transition from a structured 7:30-4:00 workday to being at home all day with a very active almost 8-year-old boy. I’m also making the transition from being a practicing speech-language pathologist to being a practicing writer.

Its been a whirlwind of a month; however, I’ve been able to find peace in the couple of hours I have to myself after my husband has gone to work and before my son is awake. I look forward to coffee and quiet as I work through The Struggle is Real but So is God bible study by Misty Phillip and Fervent by Priscilla Shirer. I have found these two work well together to help strengthen my relationship with God and teach me to fight the enemy through prayer.

It seems not long after breakfast, I get the notification, “Mom, I’m bored!” Luckily, we have been able to take advantage of activities at the public library and the pool to combat boredom. The library has satisfied my introrverted personality and the pool for my son’s extroverted personality. It’s also a great way to get some exercise and stay cool. Texas summers are HOT!

My son recently attended Camp Invention. It’s a “STEM summer program that turns curious students into innovative thinkers.” He loved spending the day making new friends and learning new skills with a hands on approach. I loved having a chance to declutter piles of papers and work on getting my new home office organized. I also organized all the papers covering my fridge with these magnetic pockets. It’s is not looking so scary anymore and I have a pocket for each person.

During lazy afternoons, we have been trying to control screen time and limit snacking while avoiding melting in the afternoon sun. These little bowls are the perfect size for a small snack, plus they are colorful and and don’t take up much room in my cabinet.

I read somewhere we could read something like 200 books a year if we replaced screen time with reading time. WOW!!  That really makes me want to put down my phone because I have about a zillion books on my Amazon wishlist.

We have successfully reduced our screen time, and audiobooks have helped. My son and I have enjoyed 2 Audible Originals so far: Riley Mack and the Other Known Trouble Makers and Jukebox Joyride. It’s been fun listening to them in the car while we drive into town and run errands. I just completed Educated by Tara Westover and I’m still trying to wrap my head around this astonishing memoir. It’s unbelievable how this sheltered girl, oblivious to the world outside of her home, was able to overcome obstacles larger than the mountain where she was raised and earn degrees from prestigious colleges.

I’ve also been listening to podcasts to make trips into town and chores a learning experience. Right now, I can’t get enough of By His Grace by Misty Phillip. She has some of the most amazing guests whose stories reveal how God’s grace guided them through even the most unimaginable struggles.

Ann Kroeker’s podcast (Ann Kroeker, Writing Coach) is giving me great lessons on writing. In short segments (usually less than 10 minutes) she shares “resources and inspiration to be more curious, creative, and productive.” I have gained valuable information about the craft and business of writing, been able to improve my overall writing and been inspired to keep going even if it’s one paragraph at a time.

TV is not my go to for entertainment, but every now and then I find something worthwhile. I love a great murder mystery and was happy to find Agatha Christie’s The ABC Murders. I loved this 3 episode series starring John Malkovich and Rupert Grint, who you might remember as Ronald Wesley from Harry Potter. It was suspenseful and had a good twist at the end. Now, I’m anxious to read the book.

This month I’ll be working on my next few post, a new website, and hopefully starting on a book! I can’t wait to share more about that. However, for now, I’m off to read On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. I’m about one third in and can’t put it down.

I’d love to hear what you are up to this summer.

Until next time…..be well!!

Lori

Just wanted to let you know that Be Well Heart and Soul participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. When you click on a link and make a purchase it allows me to earn a little commission without any cost to the reader.