Category Archives: Beauty Products

Blessing Bags

January is always the time when I feel compelled to make Blessing Bags.  I had my family do it for New Year’s Eve one year, then I made it part of my Project 12 last year to make and give out at least 12 Blessing Bags a week.  My family is very used to me passing these bags out.  I always have one in my car ready to go.

IMG_0796This year, I asked my women’s circle at church if they were interested and they were!

We set a date to pack the bags, and I sent out a sign up genius so the ladies could pick what to bring.  We made 48 bags, since lots of things come in 8, 12 and 24 packs.

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We unwrapped all the goods on the table, and packed the bags assembly line style.  Our bags included: chapstick, toothbrushes, tissues, wet wipes, peanuts, granola bars, instant coffee, water bottle, crackers, and socks.

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Then we wrote a note to put in each bag telling each recipient that they were loved and being prayed for.

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I added instant coffee to the list this time…I recently learned that most gas stations will give away a cup and hot water at no charge.

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Wanna make your own Blessing Bags?  I encourage you to do this.  It is a quick way to help out someone who really needs your help.  My kids love making these and giving them out!

Here’s some good ideas of what to get to stuff them with:

  • Gallon size ziplock bags
  • socks
  • gloves/hats
  • handwarmers
  • instant coffee or tea bags
  • fruit cups/ dried fruit
  • crackers/ beef jerky
  • granola bars/nuts
  • wet wipes/tissues
  • hand sanitizer
  • journal/pen
  • restaurant gift cards
  • chapstick
  • lotion
  • toothbrush/toothpaste
  • water bottle
  • mints/gum

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It’s Been A Year

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Tomorrow marks one year since my dad died.  365 days on the emotional grief roller coaster.

I made it through all the firsts. The first yoga class I had to teach since he died.  The first Thursday. The first week.  The first month.  Easter.  My first birthday with out him. (although I listened to the voicemail from 2014 when he sang happy birthday to me.)  Father’s day. His birthday.  Family gatherings. Veteran’s Day.  Halloween, when he would lead the parade through our neighborhood on his motorcycle.  Thanksgiving.  Christmas.  Then of course all the days in between.

And now we are here.  The last first.  Friday will be the last first anniversary of his death.  His trip to Heaven.

I will never forget that day, January 8th,  as long as I live.  On January 1st, we all gathered in Blowing Rock for dinner.  That was the last time I saw my dad alive and well.  That night when he got home, he  had a bad fall, and was rushed to the hospital and there he stayed.  He got better, and got worse, and better and worse.  He had one surgery and got better.  I spoke to him on the phone after that and we talked about how much fun we had in Blowing Rock.  Then he had another surgery and got worse.  The morning of January 8th, I drove to Tennessee to say good bye.  That was a rough car ride.  I was by myself, and the song “Happy” came on constantly.  I eventually turned off the radio and mentally wrote out the eulogy while driving and drinking my weight in Diet Dr. Pepper.  When I got to the hospital, he was bruised, bandaged up, hooked up to machines, and groaning in pain.   Even though he couldn’t speak and didn’t open his eyes, I know he knows I was there.  I know he felt my energy in that room.  I know he felt me trying to fill him up with healing light and take away his pain. I know he felt my hand hold his.  I know he heard the memories I shared with him.

Grief sucks.   big time. There is no other way I can put it.  It is heavy, and thick and your heart feels literally broken.  Like today, I woke up and I am happy and grateful and serene.  But my chest feels tight, like there is a heavy brick on it.  Or like constant heart burn.  I heard that it does get easier.  But then it gets hard again.

I ask for my dad to send me signs all the time.  And he does.  Songs on the radio, motorcycles, or sometimes the smell of grass and coffee come out of nowhere.  He comes to me in dreams.  Sometimes these dreams are so happy and make me laugh.  Other times, they are too much to handle, and I cry.

I do wish I could physically talk to him though.  (and have him answer back!)  Too many times, something funny has happened.  Or my kids did something amazing.  Or Daniel did something sweet.  Or I want to call and tell him about my promotions.  He loved being self-employed and I know he would absolutely love sharing my Plexus success with me.  He was my biggest cheerleader.

He still is my biggest cheerleader.  I see himsometimes…he looks almost like a hologram.  His chest is puffed up really big and he is so very proud of me.

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Never a dull moment around this guy.  Even his headstone reads, “He made us laugh.”  (I am not even kidding.)

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For a year, I have had fresh flowers in my house.  (Even if I have to buy them for myself!)  I know now exactly what he meant when he always told me to give the flowers to the living.

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So, what now?  Is this going to be the year of seconds?

Nope.  Not that I won’t think about it.  It will never go away.  But I think I need to keep making him proud by doing my thing.  Following my dreams and my strong intuition.

This is my year to aim big.  I plan on aiming so big that when I see his chest all puffed up it looks like he is going to explode because he is so proud.  I’ll aim big to be a strong Christian.  I’ll aim big to be a loving wife and caring mother.  I’ll aim big to be an inspirational yoga teacher.  I’ll aim big to keep my blog real and true to me.   I’ll aim big to walk the walk. I’ll aim big in my Plexus business.  I’ll aim big in my travel plans.  I’ll aim big to treat others with kindness.

Oh.  And I will not be late.  I’ll be early.  Because, “early is on time and on time is late.”   🙂

 

 

Top Posts of 2015

What a year 2015 has been!  I am actually happy to see it go…the accomplishments and the lessons learned.

2016 is a new fresh start for me and I look forward to the excitement and positive energy that will come!

I took a look at my blog stats and thought I would share my top posts, based on reader views!  I did this last year, if you want to check out 2014 top posts The two I don’t count that are highest ranked are my Teaching Schedule, and my Retreat Calendar.  Speaking of…I have one retreat planned for April 15-17, and a few more at the beach again in the works.  I will post a blog soon announcing those!  I hope you join me!

On to the Top Posts of 2015….

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  1. Eulogy – this post beat all the others by thousands of views.  Today marks the last day I saw my dad alive and well.  We met in Blowing Rock for dinner and he fell that night.  A short week later, he passed away.  Thank you again for your flowers, support, comfort and prayers during this first year of grief.  This has been a hard road, and the next week will be trying as well.   I plan to do a lot of praying, a bunch of  yoga, and just leaning on my “rocks.”

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2.  Texting with the Hubs- Part 2.  I seriously laughed out loud when I saw this was in second place.  You can read part one HERE.

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3.  Dealing with Grief.  Thank you for reading and letting me pour my heart out.

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4.  Smoked Sausage and Cauliflower Rice.  Still a favorite in this house!

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5.  Healing and Rebuilding.  Ya’ll loved these grief blogs.  I couldn’t quite bring myself to re-read any of them.  Maybe someday soon…

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6.  Changes.  This was a hard blog to write, but I really wanted to share my story behind the switching gears.  And I am so thankful for the push to make some changes.  I feel really light, valued and challenged.

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7.  37 in 37.  Ahhhh, the bucket list.

 

Seven is a magical lucky number, so I will end it there.   Did you have a favorite post of mine not listed here?  I would love to hear from you!

Hope your 2016 is filled with love, excitement, and an overwhelming sense of peace.  xo

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