Browsing Category

Fulfilled Living

12 Week Transformation Results!

You may remember me mentioning that I was participating in a 12 Week Body Transformation. Well I did it and here are my results AND the require 500 word “story” the was to be submitted! I must say I am really proud of myself even though I did not officially win. I’m amzzzed to see what I can do when I put my mind to it… it is all about the mind!

My No Excuse Mom 12 Week  Mind Transformation

“This transformation was not about my body. The way it looks, or what I could get it to do — THIS was about the power of my mind; how it looks at life & what it is capable of doing.”
When I embarked on this journey, my sole focus was my body. I took an unhealthy dose of willpower & set my goals.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that this had little to do with transforming physically. The transformation I needed & experienced was mental; which has produced lasting results that penetrate all areas of my life.
“Don’t train the body, train the mind: then the body will have no choice but to follow.”       

  -Me! Raivon Lee
Initially I attempted to run on will-power. If you are anything like me will-power is not a reliable fuel. I often found myself stranded on the sofa, cake stuffed in my mouth, not exercising & falling into my old unhealthy patterns.

 

I needed greater motivation to meet my goals. There had to be a better way to produce lasting change in my life.

 

Pleasing God: The Only Motivation Needed

Faith was key for me. In all of my actions towards a fit healthy body there was one question I began asking myself. “Will this Glorify God”…

Will eating this entire piece of cake glorify God? Will skipping this workout… Will plaguing myself with guilt?
How did I know if something glorified God? One evening I had the answer! I have an innate sense of right & wrong – good & bad – productive or destructive. We all do. We feel when something is wrong & more times than not that “something” does not glorify God.
Once my focus was shifted from my own will-power to God’s will & power my journey had greater significance. I was held to a higher level of accountability than ever before. I accomplish things I NEVER thought possible.
Like what? I’m glad you asked!

  • Running a sub 30 min 5k!
  • Fitting into size 4 jeans! I was size 8 pre-pregnancy.
  • Having a perkier booty
  • Waking up BEFORE my toddler to workout. Say what???  

Last but not least

Finding the courage to wean myself from antidepressants during week 9!

I will  never forget week 9. I am on cloud nine! I beat Postpartum Depression! I have no words only tears of joy.  I am certain that fitness &  nutrition played a role in my recovery. They are my new drugs of choice. They HAVE to be. Along with Faith.
I met goals that I didn’t even know I had. No Excuse Mom has reminded me that I have NO excuse. There is no reason for me not to live as & be a perfect child of God to radiate for all to see.

No. Excuse!

Becoming a mom is a catalyst that will make you better if you allow it!
In 12 weeks I have grown immeasurably in every aspect of my life. Thank you Maria for this powerful movement!
The Best,

Raivon Lee

Fit Mommy

Dear God: A New “Column” with Daphne Richardson

Trust God

Hello Everyone!

I am truly honored to share with you the beautifully: honest, true, private and humble writings of a very dear friend of mine. She and I go way back. We first encountered each other in 6th grade. We were 11 years old to be exact and our friendship has stood the test of time — mis-understandings — and the general messiness of life.

Daphne and I both know that God has plans for us to be a part of each others lives, because it’s obvious that it was not our own doing that brought us here, where we are today.

I recently read listened to A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles” by Marianne Williamson. In her book she mentions writings letters to God. Then, writing a response back to yourself { It’s a form of prayer} When reading the “response” you can not deny that God really does answers prayers and speaks to us — through us!

Daphne has been writing letters to God long before I was introduced to this idea, and here she will be sharing those intimate letters here with us, whenever she feels the call to do so.

If you are familiar with the Law of Attraction you may have heard of the idea of “acting as if” as a way to attract the life, job or material things you believe you want in your life to bring happiness. What Daphne and I know is that pure joy and happiness is already here. It is inside of each of us… because God lives in us.

We work relax into that truth day-in-and-out to remain in alignment with God. Thanking Him for what He has already done for us, in us and what He is doing through us! That in and of itself brings the peace and happiness we are all seeking; that car, house, man, job etc. will only quench your thirst for so long.

We do not act as IF  — We act as it IS

Trusting that if our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. If He really is living inside of us — there can be nothing other than perfection. Jesus said on the cross just before he died gave up His life for us, “It is finished”.

There is nothing for us to do,  other than accept what is ALREADY done.

You. Are. Already _______ {You fill in the blank}

So here you have it. Private Girl with Public Thoughts…

 


Dear God, Thank You for “Already”…
November 9, 2014

Dear God,

How are you? I’m feeling a bit excited and weird because I’m writing to you on a computer. Normally, Im writing to you in cursive on a legal pad, or a journal, or receipts… So, going digital is new for me, but I still intend to personally write to You.

God thank you for giving me the opportunity and space to freely published my candid thoughts.

My thoughts are full of appreciation towards You! I appreciate and love You for making me in Your image and likeness. Thank you for showing me who I am and my infite potential in You. Thank you for showing me it’s ok for me to let go again… Letting go… That feels really good and exhilarating! It feels like freedom. It feels good because there’s an effortless feeling and knowing that You’re real in me and that I’m not separated from You. It feels good because I know that Your life is effortlessly happening in and through me. It feels good because I don’t have to struggle with the effort of “bringing it to pass”. I love knowing this because my life is already good in You. Already, already… meaning that my life in You exists now and will continue for ever more. My life is already good! Abiding in You and You in I has shown me my whole life and well being through your eyes, and it’s satisfying! My life is full and complete already. There’s nothing missing, nothing absent from me because You are real and You live in me.

I love knowing what I know from You, because I’m free to live and be unconditionally loved and happy. I love knowing that I can stand right here right now and be confidentially and unconditionally happy because my life is already good in You, and I want to say thank you!

Thank you for preparing me, because I know there is much more good to come and happen in my life that I have in You; I receive it and have it right now — already. Thank you for infinitely blessing me with Your life, I accept, allow, appreciate, and love You unconditionally.

Love,

Daphne

Trust GodWhen did you have your “aha” moment and realize that “God’s got this”….? For me it was during the lowest point in my life. Postpartum Depression. Please share in the comments below on Facebook or Twitter use #VainMommyAsks.

See you all soon <3

Christian Mommy, Fulfilled Living

The Day My Toddler Said The N-Word: For The First Time

I remember it like it was yesterday… well because it was. October 27th 2014.

Throughout the day I thought I heard Ari say the N-word. But there are lots of things I think he says that of course he doesn’t, so I didn’t think much of it.

Until later in the day… there was no denying it.

I was talking to my mom on the phone and she asked to speak to Ari. I called him over and he trotted to me — cheeks giggling with every step. I place the phone to his face and he said it!

He said it. With force. He said it with passion. He said it with a head swing!

My sweet boy said NO. He said NO and he meant it!

Things suddenly got real. My heart broke. My God, he is his own person …

Now begins a lifetime ahead of power struggles my baby is growing up.

I pray that I can support his will and his independence as he embarks on this next phase of life :(.

I’m such a sap — I know…

That. Is. All.

Do you remember when your toddler first said no?

Fulfilled Living

Toddler Memory Verse: The Lord is My Shepherd

I was browsing through the Kindle library and stumble across a FREE (I’m on much needed a spending/buying fast) ebook book that gave a list of memory verses for toddlers.

Greg and I both agreed from day one that we wanted Ari to know God in a very personal way and we understand the value of sharing even little bits and pieces of God with Ari each day  even if we think he doesn’t fully understand.

Even if Ari doesn’t get much out of memory verses at this time — I sure did, and honestly what he will benefit from most is a mom that “practices what she preaches”. He will learn by example, doing what I do more often than doing what I tell him to do.

This weeks verse was “The Lord is My Shepherd”. Psalm 23

Short. Sweet. But profoundly comforting. As I thought about this scripture I thought to myself what is a Shepherd? What is his job…his purpose.

shepherd
[shep-erd] noun
1. a person who herds, tends, and guards sheep.
2. a person who protects, guides, or watches over a person or group of people.
3. a member of the clergy.
4. the Shepherd, Jesus Christ.
6. to tend or guard as a shepherd:
to shepherd the flock.
7. to watch over carefully.

The Lord is OUR Shepherd indeed. I shall not want. Why would I? He’s got this…

How do you share God with your children? How old are they?

Christian Mommy

Homemade Finger Paint For Babies and Toddlers

Hi there–Here’s a little back-story on why I decided to make paint in the first place BUT if you are in a rush you can jump on down to the easy-peasie recipe 🙂


What are we gonna do today?! . . .

I was asking myself this question with semi dread every single evening. Where would Ari and I spend our morning?

Another story time? Another park? Those things were getting old and my outlook as stay-at-home-mommy was becoming bleak. So obviuosly I took to Pinterest and searched for toddler crafts. Without fail  Pinterest came to the rescue. . . again.

Really, I just needed a little inspiration.

One of my “mid-year” resolutions is to spend more undivided time with my little guy. Time that I’m really engaged with him and not just in the same vicinity.

Today we headed out to pick up the needed supplies and I was excited!  Of course when you need crafty things you head to Michael’s…right? Wrong!! Michaels failed me horribly. They didn’t have food colors OR jars???? Weird, I know.

Back to the “back-story” — I had always wanted to be a stay at home mom and crafty activitives like making paint make me feel like one.

Ok, on the the recipe

Homemade Finger Paint!

This recipe is great for babies and toddlers who may have a hard time keeping things out of their mouths.

Finger Paint Recipe

In a small sauce pan mix:

  • 1/2 Cup Corn Starch
  • 3 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups water

mixing

Simmer on low, and stir occasionally until the mixer reaches you desired thickness. I allowed my mix to simmer for about 25 mins stirring often. I wanted a thicker paste.

finger paint

Let Cool, then put into jars of your choosing! I chose 4oz jars. that I bought from Kroger (my local grocery store). Michael’s was seriously no help for this project!

Add Food Coloring. I added 8 drops per container, but it will depend upon the amount of paste you use.

add-coloring

 

Mix. And you. Are. DONE!

Paint!

Customize! Add more food color… make it thicker…,make it thinner, add glitter!!

Ari Painting

Hmmm, What should I paint?

Ari Painting Ari Painting

Spending one-on-one  time with Ari was so much better than hustling around town to yet another park or story-time.  I can’t wait for our next crafty mommy son activity.

What do you do to keep your little ones active, interested and busy?

Fulfilled Living

How I Knew My One Year Old Was Ready For Preschool

I can not believe it–This week, in the middle of the “school” year no less, my 20 month old (why can’t I just say 1 year old…right lol) will be starting pre-school. Just last month I could not fathom the idea of sending Ari anywhere without Greg or myself. But recently something changed and I went for it.

The 5 things that let me know Ari was ready for school

  1. A gut feeling — On a daily basis I battled a pit of guilt in my stomach. Ari needed more and I knew it. As much as I tried to take him on play-dates and other social activities (and we got out a lot!) it wasn’t enough. I believe that this is something that only a mom or close care giver will pick up on. Trust your gut/intuition or as I call it the guiding voice of God. 😉 For a long time my gut was saying Ari wasn’t ready, and I listened then as well.
  2. His best friend and role model is a dog– lol. Seriously, I believe that Ari thinks he is a dog and only acts like a human at times to appease his parents. He barks, crawls everywhere, eats off the floor with his mouth, scratches at the door when he wants to go out . . . you get the point. Put simply, the kid needs more time with other children and 3 hours a day two days a week is a great start 🙂 ari doggy
  3. “I can do anything but I can’t do everything. I found this quote on Pinterst and it’s so very true for me. I was wearing myself thin trying to be everything to Ari. I realized that there are things I’m really great at being to and for him: his comforter (nothing like a mommy with liquid gold to comfort her child), his chef, his playmate (in my own capacity) etc — but at school Ari will learn, discover and be exposed to things that I wouldn’t even know to “teach” him. He will learn from his peers without the influence of his mom, which in some cases is actually a good thing.
  4. The right environment — When Ari and I attended the open house I knew it was the right place for us. I enrolled him that very same day! We toured a few schools previously and although I did like a few of them, I didn’t experience the same pull and peace that I did while on this tour. There were no bright harsh primary colored tables or chairs, no commercial toys, nature is a big part of the school with gardens and lots of outdoor play. Each class has its own outdoor area and the door is left open so the little ones can have the option to go outside if they want. Dare I say it is even a crunchy school?! It is a Child led school inspired by the Reggio Emilia Approach, and we are a child-led family.

The Reggio Emilia philosophy is based upon the following set of principles:

  • Children must have some control over the direction of their learning;
  • Children must be able to learn through experiences of touching, moving, listening, seeing, and hearing
  • Children have a relationship with other children and with material items in the world that children must be allowed to explore and
  • Children must have endless ways and opportunities to express themselves.

My immediate feeling was “this is right” and after calling Greg we acted on it!

openhouse

Ari at open-house he really enjoyed himself!

 

Lat but not least… I was ready! For once since having Ari I was ready. Not ready for time alone (even though I welcome a couple of hours to get things done, like cleaning in peace, blogging and working out) but I am ready, for him to experience this next exciting step in his little life.

Are you on the fence about sending your little one to school? How did you know your child was ready? Let me know in the comment below, on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram!

Fulfilled Living