3 Motivation Quotes I Use Everyday

Cherish The Simple Things"Start from where you are with whatever you've got" by Jim Rohm"Do one small thing today that will take you closer to your dreams" by Darren Rowse

There are times when a quote I see really grabs me. It could be that it hit a nerve in me or was relevant to what I was going through. I will sometimes write it down on a sticky note to remember it. 3 Motivation quotes I use everyday are:

“Cherish The Simple Things”

This quote speaks to me because of how quickly time goes by and how easy it is to miss the little things in life. It gets me to slow down when I get too busy and preoccupied. It is on a wall hanging in our front room, a gift I bought for my husband. My previous post told the story of this gift and what it means to me.

“Start from where you are and with whatever you’ve got” by Jim Rohm

This quote speaks to me because I have a tendency to procrastinate. The easiest thing to do is NOT do something. I read it in a LifeHack.org article about “Time Management” quotes. I have a hard time getting started on projects because I convince myself that there will be a better time to do them or there is something else I need in order to get started. The reality is the only time I have is now and I have no idea what tomorrow will bring. I now convince myself to just get started on things and do what I can.

“Do one small thing today that will take you closer to your dreams” by Darren Rowse

This quote speaks to me because I am a perfectionist at heart. When I work on something, I let all the thoughts overwhelm me with the various steps and things I need to do to get it done. I now tell myself, “Do something everyday to move forward.” Whether the action is perfect or not, or no matter how small the step, I just need to take it. This quote comes from a podcast I had listened to by Darren Rowse where he talked about the small things that are done each day to reach a goal. I now focus on getting through small things every day.

This blog is the result of my focus on these three quotes. It is something I wanted to do for a long time but always found a reason to NOT do it.

Motivation

What are quotes you use to focus and motivate you? Please let me know in the comments.

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About the Author:
Miranda dreams of Rving across the country with her family and her 2 crazy little dogs – unless she’s swamped being a working mother and helping other moms with practical wisdom she has learned from over 2 decades raising a family. A teen mom, single mom, stay at home mom, working mom, she’s been there done that.

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Cherish Simple Things

Cherish The Simple Things

 

Last Christmas I was looking for a gift for my husband, who is difficult to shop for. It is always a challenge finding a present for someone who doesn’t want anything.  My husband pretty much gets himself things that I would normally want to get him for gifts.  Serendipity struck while I was wandering at Target and I found a perfect wall hanging with the saying, “Cherish The Simple things”.

This item spoke to me because it is something my husband says often. We have tried to live by this motto in our marriage and in parenting. When I think about what it means, it is very basic, SLOW DOWN! Be Engaged in the moment.

Life moves by so fast. Everything is competing for our attention and it can be very easy to miss things. I think also, that sometimes we live on auto pilot. I know I do when I am tired and just trying to complete a task. I am there but not really “THERE”.

Some people use the sayings “Live for Today” or “You only live once”(YOLO) to motivate them, thinking it accomplishes the same thing. I see those quotes as different than “Cherish The Simple Things”. Those quotes refer to getting as much into a day or into life as possible. They reflect a mindset of DOING MORE.

“Cherish The Simple Things” is about quality, not quantity. It is possible to “Live for Today” and not really appreciate and treasure what’s going on. The laugh of a child, a nice cool breeze, a moment of silence, the glimpse into a loved one’s eyes, all require engagement to take them in. Cherish simple things in all aspects of life by paying attention.

Phones have become big siphons of our attention and get in the way of this experiencing of life. Since they can almost do everything, we stay glued to them. The quote, “Cherish The Simple Things”, motivates me to get me off the phone and into the moment I am in.

We hung the wall art in the front room where we can’t miss it, as a reminder every day. I also have sticky notes with the saying in various places to get the message across. For something so important as LIFE, I best be an active participant in it and “Cherish The Simple Things”.

I hope you do to.

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How A Tv Show and Coffee Mug Found a Missing Person

Sleep, Coffee, crafting, frustration, motherhood, parenting, starbucks

 

Sometimes we come across something that expresses how we feel better than we can. The other day I found just that on a coffee mug that said, ” I Just Want To Drink Coffee Create Stuff And Sleep”.

As a working mother of a 2 year old toddler I would say that rest and Me-time are foreign concepts. Being that I have been a mother since I was 15, I should be used to it. I’m not. This doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be a mother or that I lament it. It is just hard to remember a time when I wasn’t “Mom”.

I sometimes don’t know my identity outside that role in my life. I value being a mom and wife immensely and wouldn’t trade it for anything. I am referring to being so wrapped up in the tasks of the day, that I “lose” myself in it. Not that I don’t find fulfillment there or joy, but that the parts of me that existed before being a “mom” feel lost.

I do carve out time to do my crafts and the activities that I love. (I found time to write this article.) What I am talking about is losing the pre-mom Miranda, the person that didn’t have to look over the needs of her family. The person that could create and just be.

I was watching the tv show, Wahlburgers, on A&E and part of the episode was about the mother Alma Wahlberg doing a discussion panel about being a celebrity mom. One of the questions she was asked was about how she kept her identity in the shadow of her famous sons. Her answer struck a nerve with me. She said “I fought for it!”. She stressed that she was always being introduced as so and so’s mom and wasn’t even called by her own name.

I relate to this completely. After I saw that episode and then the mug, it hit me, “I have to fight to keep Miranda alive”. I am not using fight in an aggressive, boxing sense. The fight I am pointing out is the fight within me to not become so busy with my roles of worker, mom, and wife that my very core gets shut out. The tv show and a coffee mug found a missing person, I didn’t realize was even lost.life, family, work, career, balance, identity, self, womans roles

This can apply to anyone. We do change over time as we grow and experience new things. This does not mean that we should lose our identity, performing whatever roles we have to at that point in our lives. We need to nurture the person we are and not let them get lost and buried.

This means taking time to reflect and doing things that we love, not just going along for the ride in other people’s plans. It requires making sure we get proper rest so we don’t go through the day like zombies. We can’t keep our identity if we are too tired and busy to realize its being lost.

For me I need to drink some coffee so I can create some stuff (other than this article) and then get some sleep. Tomorrow will be here before I know it.

“Work” Miranda will then need get up and do her thing, so she can get home, so “Mom” Miranda can do her thing, so “Wife” Miranda can do hers, all the while making sure “Inner” Miranda gets her little slice of time. Wish me luck as I fight the good fight!

worker, mom, wife, friend, identity, self,

 

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The Shocking Truth About Calorie Counting Phone Apps

food, eating, diet, dieting, weightloss, weight loss, weight gain, exercise

I have tried different things to get healthier and lose weight over the years. After reading an article by Anna Almendrala at Huffington Post, I decided to share my experience. One of the things I recently tried, an Iphone App, backfired on me. It was as App reviewed by Stephanie Pappas at LiveScience.com that I decided to download and use. It had a flaw so obvious that when I stopped using it, I lost 5 pounds quickly. Let me explain.

The draw to these health apps is that most of us have a smart phone that we keep with us at all times. While the smart phones are technically “Smart”, these apps are only as good as the data we put into them and our use of them. I am specifically referring to calorie counting phone Apps where every time you eat, you log what you ate and it keeps track of the calories. I was using MyFitnessPal, but after talking to others who use similar calorie counting phone Apps, the flaw applies to all of them.

In these calorie counting phone Apps, you set your desired calorie goal for the day, which is some number less than your needed goal, based on activity levels, age, etc. The logic of this being if you eat less calories than you need, you will lose weight. Now obviously, if you burn more calories via increased exercise, you should lose weight anyway by the very fact that you are burning calories that would normally be stored as fat. I am not referring to that. I am referring to using the app as a calorie control device.

After each meal I would enter my meals and the app would calculate the calories I consumed. The app had almost everything I had eaten and would allow me to input what it did not have. The app shared the food database with other users so over time as people put in the missing items, it would fill many of the gaps. I was careful to keep within my limit most days and the app would display a running total all day long so I could monitor it. This is where the flaw lies.

Because I was monitoring it so closely, I was constantly thinking about food and eating. And with thinking about food and eating, what did I do? I desired food! Even when I was not hungry, I thought, “The app shows I can eat because I have calories left for the day.” And then I would eat something. It put my focus on food, calories, and trying to stay within the limit for the day. The App was conditioning me to worry and stress about food. I had that damn calorie number running through my mind all day. It was a regular mind game to weigh eating a snack against all the things I could eat with that calorie count. I was becoming a calorie slave.

Rather than just going through my day and eating when I was hungry, I had this new set of tasks to do. Where I might just eat a banana, I may eat a banana and something else because I had calories to use. It was like having money in my purse and spending it because it was there and I KNEW it was there. The worst thing most people can do is KNOW they have money on them. Awareness of cash burns a hole so quickly for most people, they wonder where it went.

The calories became like that for me. I went a few months with no results wondering, “What’s going on here?” One Saturday I caught myself doing this food/calorie mind game and it hit me. I wasn’t even hungry, yet I was weighing the calorie count for something I didn’t even want to eat. The App had the side effect of having me focus TOO much on food.

Like dogs who salivate at the sight of their food bag, I would see that App on my phone and think about food. I would think about calories whenever I saw any type of food I might want to eat. It would start this calorie mental debate, where I would weigh what I could do with my calorie count I had left. This would run though my mind almost subconsciously.

I knew I had to get rid of the calorie counting phone App. It was better for me to just eat when I was hungry. I didn’t need an App to eat in moderation. I just limited my intake of the food when I ate and went on with my day. The results were crazy. With no increase in exercise and no change in my diet, I lost 5 pounds that first week. I wasn’t thinking about food all day.

I am down another 3 pounds since and am not consumed by thoughts of food. I know that if I binge and overeat, I will gain weight. It is much easier to not eat when not thinking about food. Now if I can just turn off the Food Network, I can get down to my pre-kids weight.

watching cooking shows, food network, food on tv, woman watching tv

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About the Author:
Miranda dreams of Rving across the country with her family and her 2 crazy little dogs – unless she’s swamped being a working mother and helping other moms with practical wisdom she has learned from over 2 decades raising a family. A teen mom, single mom, stay at home mom, working mom, she’s been there done that.

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How I stay sane in an insane world.

chores,family,kids,stress,job,money,health

We have all been there, surrounded by chaos and confusion, just trying to make it through the day. From crying, needy kids to work, life pressures, it can be overwhelming. There just is not enough time in the day to handle everything. When we add to that the stuff we burden ourselves with internally, we can easily be part of the cause of stress in others. This cycle is not good and definitely no way to live. It can be a challenge to stay sane in an insane world.

I decided a long time ago to not take the stuff so seriously. We are all human and react to the world around us. When the stress bus comes my way, I let it go by to get the next willing rider. I can only do what I can do. I am not super woman, even though that often seems what is expected of me.stress bus, work stress, life stress

I think from a young age, we are not taught how to cope with stress. We are put in classrooms to sit still and be quiet. We are not given much of an outlet for the pains and frustrations that are part of being a person. No one ever tells us that getting angry and dealing with it are a normal part of life. Very often we channel it inward.  We go from youth to adulthood ill-equipped for the realities of living in the modern world.

Because we direct so much stuff inside, we create more craziness for ourselves and others. I try to recognize this before it gets out of hand around me. I work to find humor where I can. I say may piece where it is needed and address items before they go too far. If I can’t finish or handle something, I let others know. I am not afraid to ask for help. Many people know more than me and that is ok.

People will get my best effort but I never claim to be perfect. When I mess up, I’ll speak up because I do not want others to be blamed and I can learn from the mistakes.

I realize my flaws and do not spend any time living in the past. It is great to reminisce but I try to live in the now. We have all been hurt and carry around pains from the past. I cry when I need to cry. I remind myself that the stuff that has happened to me made me who I am today, and I like who I am.

I work to cherish the little things. I find little nuggets of time for the things I like. I’m open to new things when they come around, but am content with what I have. I have hopes for tomorrow but know that tomorrow will never come. It will always be NOW.

stressIf you liked this post, please share so others may as well. If you got any value from this post, share it twice

About the Author:
Miranda dreams of Rving across the country with her family and her 2 crazy little dogs – unless she’s swamped being a working mother and helping other moms with practical wisdom she has learned from over 2 decades raising a family. A teen mom, single mom, stay at home mom, working mom, she’s been there done that.

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5 Things I learned early on to increase sales on ETSY

Confused Etsy crafter looking for answers.

When I first started my store I was happy to just have a shop. I didn’t know anything about running an ETSY business or how to make it successful. I wanted to increase sales on Etsy. Experience is a good teacher and after a month of no sales I went digging for some answers. I found five things that I needed to improve ASAP if I was going to be able to sell anything on ETSY

  • My pictures needed to be better. Even though I was careful to make sure they were clear and were a good representation of the products, the exact color of the item was not always easy to see. I found that I needed to take the pictures under natural light. The difference was slight but made a big impact in my views and sales.
  • My descriptions needed to be more personalized. Not being a very good writer, I just wrote generic sentences that didn’t convey how much I care for my products and my attention to detail. When people shop on ETSY, they have many options for where and what products to buy. I had to rewrite all of my descriptions.
  • I didn’t offer customization. I needed to be able to offer custom orders for people who wanted them. This required some back and forth with my buyers but I found that the communication opened up other opportunities to sell.
  • I was not clear on the type of material I was using. I just assumed my customers knew how the products were made. By adding that information, it caused me to get some custom orders from people who wanted the product made from other materials.
  • I needed to put the care instructions in with the item. I didn’t realize how people take that into consideration when deciding to place an order. Again I wasn’t looking at the purchase from the customer’s point of view.

Fixing these 5 simple things made a big difference in my shop. I have continued to learn and grow over the years I have had my ETSY shop. I am thankful for the relationships I have made and the feedback I have received.

Crochet Baby Hats and Blankets

I have had an Etsy store since 2007. I have sold a variety of things in the time that I have been open.

I currently focus on making custom crochet baby hats and blankets that I sell in my ETSY shop. Many of my customers purchase them for their baby. I love the thought of the cute little babies wearing my hats. When I get an emailed picture back with the hat I made on someone’s child, it is so amazing. I will post some of these cute pictures after I get permission from the parents to do so.

IMG_0320

I also have photographers who like to have a few crochet hats and blankets available for their photo sessions. I make packages available so a photographer can have a few color options on hand. I get alot of referrals due to the quality of my work. I will discuss some of these great photographers in future posts.

Custom Crochet Baby Hat

I have made custom crochet hats for kids of all ages. I love the way a cute baby looks in a Crochet hat. Baby pictures are very important to parents so I am honored that they choose my hats for the special occasion.

Many of my customers have purchased crochet hat/blanket matching sets for daily use. Because they are well made and comfortable, they get a lot of wear out of them. I love when I get repeat customers for a another hat and/or blanket for the same kid.

blanket+hat

I work with my customers to make sure the sizing is correct and the colors are what they are looking for. I use quality materials and the products come from a smoke-free home. I put a lot of love in the products and I feel such joy and satisfaction when I read all the positive comments in my shop.

 

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