Blog Archives

Bloghop Giveaway – BendiBaby Yoga Mat

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I’ve got some great news for you if (a) you have a wee one, and (b) you like free stuff, especially if you are into yoga. Though I am pretty new to yoga (only 6 months into my practice), it has quickly become my “Fitness Favorite,” and I especially love that Baby Girl follows along with my moves. When I first learned about BendiBaby, I was impressed by company founder/owner Brooke Kochel’s love for and commitment to the earth and children.

These baby and toddler mats are her own brainchild, and here is what she has to say about them (from the BendiBaby website):

“I designed the mat with an on-the-go mother in mind. With a built-in antibacterial, you can fit the mat in your diaper bag or purse and lay it anywhere for a clean, soft space for “Little Bit”. The uses for the mats are as creative as your family can be: yoga at school, Mommy & Me classes, picnics at the park, diaper changes in public restrooms, fun at festivals, naps at daycare, baby massage with Daddy or Special Needs physical therapy.”

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I bought our own little bit one of these mats, and I absolutely love it. After a thorough inspection, including lots of slobber and chewing, it appears that BendiBaby gets Baby Girl’s full approval, too!!

This really is a nice little mat. It’s the perfect size, fits easily into the diaper bag, and holds up perfectly to her sharp little toofies. It has nice grip, cushioning, and we love the colors!

Here’s the great news… BendiBaby has offered to give one free mat away in this giveaway! If you would love for your little one to have his or her own yoga mat, this is a great opportunity for you! You can enter to win HERE —》 a Rafflecopter giveaway
, and then be sure to click the link below to visit the other great bloggers in this bloghop giveaway for more chances to win!!!

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The Budding Yogi

To practice yoga is to practice the art of letting go. Let go of expectations.  Embrace what is. Reach for what can be.

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Wild Thing, you make my heart sing!

Little did I know that when I embarked upon this yoga journey in January that it was to become another lifestyle change. It took many years for me to come to yoga because I had this preconceived notion that it was all about holding a pose. Little did I know that there are MANY types of yoga, and now I’ve come to realize that while I still know very little and have so much to learn, yoga is PLAY. It’s flowing, moving, breathing, accepting, embracing, living and loving. To practice yoga is to live in the moment. And there has been no greater teacher of this wisdom (and source of inspiration) than my own Great Bambino Yogi, Baby Girl.

This kid never ceases to astound me. I could brag for hours, but I’ll spare you. Let me just say this… she wakes up doing her own little yoga flow. Throughout the day, she can be found randomly dropping into a myriad of poses and sequences. When I roll out my mat, she drops into different variations of Downward Facing Dog underneath me. She loves inversions and playing on the stability ball. Just as often as she imitates me, I attempt to imitate her.

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Yoga playtime!

So…who is the budding yogi? I’m the beginner here. She’s an old sage. 😉

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Sometimes you just have to stop, drop & selfie!

MOM TALK: A Few God-given Promises

I received another gem in my email and just had to share…

Mom Talk

So, I took this online quiz which informed me that I should only have one child because I’m “just not cut out for this motherhood thing.” Apparently, the makers of this quiz were unimpressed with my “go to meal” of boxed macaroni and cheese and my inability to hold someone’s hair back while they vomit. They would probably be horrified to know that I am expecting my fifth child!

What I found amusing is that the makers of the quiz pretty much touched on all of the areas in which we moms tend to compare ourselves to each other. You know how it goes. You see some kid at church with the cutest outfit. You ask the mom where she bought it only to discover that it was handmade. Meanwhile, you don’t even own a needle and thread. Or, maybe, you’ve never made a meal that was Pinterest worthy and no one has ever asked for the recipe for your end of the week Leftovers Casserole.

Motherhood was never meant to be a competition sport. We are all on the same team. We have different strengths and weaknesses. We have all been equipped for good works – just equipped differently. We are to do everything to the glory of God utilizing the gifts that we have each been given.

So, don’t be intimidated by that crafty mom who makes unbelievable treats for her child’s classroom party. Applaud her for her efforts because I promise she struggles in another area. On the flip side, don’t judge the mom who always signs up to bring the paper goods because she probably rocks at kissing boo boos and telling bedtime stories.

I’m going to leave you with just a few promises that you can claim, as a mother, regardless of your sewing or culinary skills.

1. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14.)
2. You are thoroughly equipped (2 Timothy 3:17.)
3. You have God-given gifts (1 Corinthians 7:7.)

We need to learn to appreciate each other’s gifts without devaluing our own gifts. What you do, fellow mom, is amazing. The day in and day out of it all takes commitment and hard work and it is not for the faint of heart. I’m proud of what you do – whether it’s homemade treats or store bought cookies. Whether it’s chicken noodle soup from scratch or Ramen noodles from a pack. There is no condemnation for those up to their necks in motherhood.

So, serve that boxed Mac and cheese with pride. Hold your head high when you deliver those paper goods to your child’s classroom. I know that’s what I’m going to do.

Carry on, moms. We are all in this together.

Meet the author:

Stacy Edwards (@sjedwards) is a trucker’s daughter and a pastor’s wife. She is married to Michael Edwards, the Evangelism and Recreation Pastor at Living Hope. She is a freelance writer and a homeschooling mom to four little girls. Stacy blogs at Servant’s Life where she uses her words to point others to the hope and encouragement found in Christ. If you need her, she’s probably hiding in the bathroom.

Do you know a mom who needs encouragement? Why don’t you pass this on to her?

MOM TALK: Overwhelmed & Ill-equipped

I get these wonderful little gems in my inbox every week called “Mom Talk” and sometimes they really are very timely for what’s going on in my life. I won’t bore you with the details of my life, but suffice it to say major life changes, be they related to work, family, or personal struggles, can easily become overwhelming. When changes in the three come together at one time, it can become a perfect storm. Finding peace in the eye of the storm is essential to maintaining harmony. How do you find that peace? By crying out to the very Author of Peace… Jesus.

So, without further ado, I share with you…

Mom Talk:

Do you ever feel overwhelmed with the stage of life you are in right now? Maybe, one day, it feels like you have everything under control. Then, little by little, the ground begins to give way beneath you. Then, before you know it, you are in over your head. You begin making mistakes at work. All of a sudden, you can’t pull yourself together enough to even make a grocery list. You feel like you are drowning.

From the end of the earth I will cry to You,

When my heart is overwhelmed;

Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. – Psalm 61:2

There is something you need to remember. Satan is the author of lies. Everything about him is evil and deceptive and his intention is to steal every bit of joy from your life. He will do his very best to convince you that you are ill-equipped for the life you currently have. He wants you to believe that God has randomly dropped you into the role of working mom or single mom or homeschooling mom and then not equipped you to do it well. Listen closely. It is not your abilities that Satan wants you to doubt. He is attacking your faith in the One who has placed you where you are right now. Satan wants you to begin to doubt the goodness and provision of God.

Satan will try to convince you that God simply did not equip you well enough for this season of life. And, if you buy into that lie, anxiety and fear will begin to grow.

Are you feeling overwhelmed right now? Ill-equipped?

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. – 2 Timothy 3:16-17

Are you scared? Anxious? Worried you may mess it all up? Go to His Word. Everything you need to equip yourself is within those pages. All Scripture is God breathed, so that you can be equipped for every good work. And, not just equipped, but thoroughly equipped.

If you are staying in the Word, you are thoroughly equipped for every task you encounter. You are thoroughly equipped to be a godly mother, a supportive and loving spouse, a productive employee, and the servant that you are called to be.

There will be those days when you feel the waters rising and you begin to feel overwhelmed. But, long before Satan has a chance to pull you under, follow David’s lead in Psalm 61 and cry out to the One who is never overwhelmed by your circumstances.

Meet the author:

Stacy Edwards (@sjedwards) is a trucker’s daughter and a pastor’s wife. She is married to Michael Edwards, the Evangelism and Recreation Pastor at Living Hope. She is a freelance writer and a homeschooling mom to four little girls. Stacy blogs at Servant’s Life where she uses her words to point others to the hope and encouragement found in Christ. If you need her, she’s probably hiding in the bathroom.

Do you know a mom who needs encouragement? Why don’t you pass this on to her?

When Life Hands You Lemons…

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When life hands you lemons… forget about making lemonade. Make lemon meringue pie! Tangy, sweet, deliciousness – THAT is how I choose to live my life!

Work Report:
I’m adjusting quickly and easily to the night shift, thanks to a fantastic support team – my family. Mr. Incredible had a rough start to the week, in order to allow me to load up on sleep before the start of my shift Monday, but he was able to catch up on some sleep thanks to the rest of the fam. His parents and sister live nearby and are INCREDIBLY helpful. Hmmmm… maybe from now on I should refer to them collectively as The Incredibles? Yes, I think so. 😉

So, the big concerns I had before this week started were sleep, eats, and running. How has that all worked out so far?

    1. Sleep: less than what I was getting, but it’s in the 7 – 8 hour range, so that’s actually good. I’ve experienced zero drowsiness while driving home, and been able to fall asleep within 15 minutes of arriving, so that is excellent.

    2. Eats: this has been a bit of a challenge. I’ve not eaten much at all at home this week. Twice, I ate within two hours of waking, and the other two times I only downed a protein drink after running. At work, it’s a different story. I arrive with time to eat my super-duper oatmeal and then I eat every 2-3 hours during the 10.5 hours shift. I’ll have to experiment some to get myself back on my feed at home.

    3. Running: this one turned out easier than I expected. I rearranged my training schedule this week from M/W speed, F/S easy runs to T/Th speed, S long/easy. The only thing I really had to contend with was the guilt I felt at taking time for myself during that first run. After talking to Mr. Incredible and reminding myself that I’m actually getting MORE time with her during her waking hours EVEN WHEN I RUN, I was able to shake that off.

And that leads to the greatest night shift pro – more quality time with family. We’re only four days in, but so far it’s been great!

And now… on to more lemons: today’s run.

First it was a GPS fail. Half mile in, my phone reports to me that I’ve run a mile in five minutes. Well, honey, I’m no Kara Goucher, so I know something’s screwy. I restart my RunKeeper app and try again. Less than a minute in, I’ve apparently run a forty second mile. My HORSE can’t even run that fast!

So, I decide to forget tracking the run and simply proceed on perceived effort. With the battery not being sucked up by my app, I would take pics of all of the snow, ice and frozen ponds.

I turn the camera on and… camera fail. It’s more like storage fail. Not enough space on my phone for more pics because I have over 1,200 photos and videos still waiting for a backup.

Well, then, put the phone up and work on that mind-body connection for my perceived effort run!

Overall, it was a 6.3 mile run to a particular stop sign and back – 1 mile warmup, 4.3 miles hard, 1 mile cool down.

My warmup mile was probably faster than it was scheduled to be, at least I know I had hit the half mile mark in 5 minutes. I was supposed to be warming up at an 11min/mile pace. It was cold, though – lower 20’s without the windchill – so I really just wanted to get warm. Plus, it IS easier to run faster in the cold.

Once I put the phone away, I basically kept myself at the edge of an asthma attack, huffing and puffing and blowing like a winded barrel horse exiting the arena at the Calgary Stampede. For four miles.

There was a lot of inner dialogue going on:

Run hard to that fencepost and then you can take a breather.

Charge up that hill! Lift those knees!

Ok, now just keep the pace on the downhill and keep going.

You can rest at the bottom, but you gotta push it up the next hill!

You can make it to that mailbox. YES, you can!

Skip and dodge the ice like a kid playing hopscotch… Play, have FUN!

Yes, you’re lungs are burning, but do you want to regret not putting extra effort into it, or do you want to collapse in a pool of satisfaction at the end?

Even after pushing hard, I wasn’t really satisfied, though. I’m slower than I used to be. MUCH slower than where I want to be. But that is what drives me – the desire to go further, faster, and be stronger.

Afterwards, baby girl was napping, so I wrapped it up with some stretching, Sun Salutations, plank, side plank and two sessions of 7 minutes with Sima. Yoga is a new endeavor, and I swear, trying to keep up with Sima was about to kill me. Maybe I should be ashamed to admit that about only 14 minutes of yoga, but hey, it is what it is. And you gotta start somewhere, right?

Do you practice yoga? Did you run today? How did it go? How is work treating you this week?

A Little Wisdom for the Day

Gave this little tidbit of advice to my niece and thought I’d share with you, too – whoever you may be.

Life is a marathon, not a hundred yard dash… Just keep your eye on the finish line through everything that comes your way. Sometimes people get in your path and you have to slow down, sometimes you hurt or are just tired and its all you can do to just plug along, sometimes there are hills along the way and its ALL. YOU. CAN. DO. to even put one foot in front of the other.

But you know what’s on the other side of that hill? The downhill slope – it’s all gravy on the downhill side, but you have to climb before you can fly! Keep pushing, keep plugging, keep your eye on that finish line and before you know it you will be soaring like an eagle!!