Mother’s Day Blues? Read this.

Mother’s Day Blues? Read this.

images-15When I woke up this morning, I was feeling a little bit sorry for myself. After all, it’s Mother’s Day, and while I am very blessed to have three beautiful children, this year, it felt a little bittersweet.

See, my oldest son (going on 17 in July) has made a poor choice in his young life; one that caused our family to have to change drastically. And thanks to choices others have made, our lives won’t ever be the same.

But as a family, we are working through it and we are confident that he will be just fine when he’s through with his treatment. He even wrote me a beautiful Mother’s Day poem that brought tears to my eyes (I shared that today on our Facebook page, if you’d like to read it–of course I’d highly recommend it!)

And my beloved mother-in-law passed away in December. Today, I’m really feeling her.

And maybe it was her influence that caused me to wake up and change my attitude.

But though I allowed myself a moment to wallow (and another  second when I saw someone post a Facebook status about unconditional love), I quickly got over it.

In fact, when I heard my husband and son making coffee as they prepared to surprise me with breakfast in bed, I almost felt guilty for feeling anything other than joy.

10151770694475411The fact is that I have three beautiful, healthy kids and a husband who loves me to the moon and back. And we are about to move into our dream home and begin the next amazing leg on this journey of life. How can I be anything less than grateful?

(The photo here was taken a few years ago after my daughter’s first dance recital.)

 

My point is this: no matter where you are today and how you’re feeling, try taking a moment to focus not on what’s bothering you or what makes you sad about your life, but on what makes you feel happy, thrilled, grateful, loved, fulfilled.

All those things that make you smile even when no one’s looking–those are the things that you need to stay focused on today. Because the truth is that you bring about what you think about–so focus on what you want and not what you don’t.

Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who has ever had the privilege to be called Mommy. And to everyone who is or was a Mom even when she didn’t have to be.

Why You Must Follow Your Passion, Even When You Have Kids

Why You Must Follow Your Passion, Even When You Have Kids

“The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mode but the true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives the passion that she shows. The beauty of a woman grows with the passing years.” ~Audrey Hepburn

Overwhelmed, frazzled and decidedly NOT hot!Have you ever found yourself feeling “less than” or underestimated by someone you love? Maybe you were thrown under the bus or treated like you were an employee rather than a partner. Maybe this sort of thing happens a little too often, and maybe it’s beginning to take a toll on your self esteem, especially if your tormentor is your spouse—and especially if you truly love and respect him.

While no one wants to believe negative things about herself, sometimes it’s just easier to believe that you’re not worthy…but when you let go of the feeling that you deserve to have a good, healthy relationship that benefits both of you, or the idea that you’re worth loving, you let go of a huge part of yourself.

The Not-So-Hot Effect of Putting Your Personal Development on Hold for Your Kids

This happens to a lot of moms, especially those who put their entire lives on hold to raise their kids. See, while you’re busy doing the work of parenting, you’re not developing your Self.

In fact there are studies that show that teen moms are often stunted in their emotional growth to the point that some never mature emotionally beyond the age they were when they gave birth. Others manage but it takes much longer. And still some others don’t struggle at all.

The point is that awareness is crucial to creating positive change in your life. And in the case of being a hot wife, having your own interests and projects outside of your kids and hubby will make you just so much hotter!

How to Be a Hot Wife Who Also Happens to Be a Mom: Find, Nurture and Develop Your Passions

mom juggle lifeAs you already know, a hot wife always has her own interests and passions. But when hot wives become hot moms, they sometimes let their personal needs and wants sit by the wayside so long they forget what they are–and the effect isn’t pretty.

To discover your passion, if you haven’t already, you need to know your purpose.

How to Discover the Purpose of Your Life

If you’re like a lot of moms, you might not have figured out what you’re supposed to do with your life, outside of raising your kids. What is your personal  life purpose?

What is a life purpose anyway?

passionFor our uses, we’re going to define it as something that you love to do that also has a great impact on the world. It’s that sweet spot where you’re having a great time and doing something wonderful for as many people as possible.

Most of us leave our lives up to chance. We slide into a profession that we don’t hate and stay there or in a similar situation until we’re ready to retire. Living your purpose usually requires taking action with the intention of finding it.

There are several ways you can attempt to discover the purpose of your life:

  1. Describe your ideal day. Project yourself several years into the future and imagine that your life is essentially perfect. What would your life look like? Are you working? What type of work are you doing? What do you do all day? Who is in your life?
  • Now that you know what the end looks like, what can you do today to take the first step in that direction?
  1. Try austerity. Go camping in a remote place. Leave the food at home, but bring plenty of water. Limit your sleep and just sit with yourself. When you’re miserable, bored, lonely, and tired, sometimes the answers become obvious.
  2. Volunteer. Find an organization in your community that interests you. Doing something worthwhile can be a good way to discover your purpose. Even if you come up short, at least you’ll have done something important.
  3. Assume you can do the impossible. When anything is possible, what would you do? Take action to bring your dreams to life.
  4. Write. Perhaps the most effective way to discover your life’s purpose is to spend an hour writing. At the top of your paper write, “My life’s purpose.” Now spend the next 60 minutes writing whatever pops into your mind.
  • When you find something that stirs strong positive feelings within you, you’re probably on the right track.
  1. Investigate a new hobby. We all have at least one activity we’ve been putting off until a more convenient time. Doing something new exposes you to new ideas and thoughts. Now is the time to jump in and get started. You might be surprised what you discover.
  2. Do something that terrifies you. Skydiving? Public speaking? You might find your life’s purpose during the process of conquering this fear.
  • This can be challenging and it might take some time, but get started today.
  1. Spend a day being totally inspired. From the time you wake up until the time you go to bed, attempt to spend every moment inspired. The right books, music, and movies can help you maintain an inspired mental state.
  • You’ll believe you can do anything. What would you do?

Ask yourself what you would do if you had $10 million. How would you spend your time? What would your life look like? Can you figure out a way to make a living doing one of the activities you would be willing to do for free if you had the time?

Keep trying the above tips until you’ve found something that really excites you. When you find your purpose, there will be no doubt. Avoid spending all of your life thinking and planning. Get busy living.

Finding your life’s purpose will make life exciting and meaningful!

So how about you, have you discovered your passion and purpose yet? Share your thoughts, experiences and ideas in the comments section, below!

 

FYI: How A Child Support Collection Agency Works For You

FYI: How A Child Support Collection Agency Works For You

The collection of outstanding child support after a lengthy court process with financial restructuring and the downsizing of the household economy can lead to confusion and stress.

An independent child support collection agency can offer a positive solution to child support enforcement agency mandate.

Parents struggling to respond to child support orders often find enforcement agency processes difficult. Families that have survived divorce proceedings acknowledge that the child support process can add even more pressure.

With the help of a child support collection agency, single parents can get the help they need to avoid child support payment evasion.

Setting up child support payments with an independent agency assists parents in financial planning.

Depending upon the state, obligations may involve a number of mandated priorities in evaluation of payment: bankruptcy and child support, calculation of support, child support, custody, delinquent claims, disability, disputes, Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC), health insurance, IV-D and TANF financial assistance, non-cash support, education funds, retroactive support and wage garnishments.

Issues related to incarcerated parents and restitution, due process of arrears cases and real property liens may delay immediate signatory on contract for investigative review.

If initiated prior to delinquent claims and retroactive support, independent support collection agencies can stop property liens from taking place. Installment agreements that honor child support orders are an important factor in ceasing judgment liens from the court order.

Child support agreements substantiate that ‘good faith’ and adequate payment on support orders have been made. Support collection agencies provide documentation that can be referred to during legal review of delinquent obligors.

Parents seeking guidance on child support enforcement will find that collections arrangements assure that the future is clear of any outstanding liens or other obligations. Failure to comply with support collection agreements in measure of court mandate with installment judgments on arrearage debt can result in seizure of property. Support collections protect family possessions that a child may benefit from.

Child support is an important step in putting a child first. Court-ordered child support mandates are vital legal instruments in measure of financial obligation to children who have undergone custody proceedings. Support collection agencies offering private agreements provide a safe and secure process for meeting those responsibilities.

For more information about support collections services, child support enforcement rules in regard to collections services processing and avoidance of property liens, inquire about third-party payee agreements. Support collection agreements are subject to terms and conditions, but most offer scaled installment payment plans that accommodate the child support order within an actual budget. Review support collection agreements for competitive fees and services. Child support payments place families, not finance, first.

About the Author
When Sarah Daskin had trouble trying to collect child support payments from her ex-spouse, she turned to the internet to find a reputable support enforcement agency. She had a great experience with the company she chose and recommends you visit http://www.supportcollectors.com/resources_texas.php
for more information today.

FYI: How A Child Support Collection Agency Works For You

5 Quick Fitness Tips for Working Women

Guest Post Contributed by Ray Lehigh, Medifast

 

Have you ever looked at that gorgeous woman on television and envied her hourglass figure? Have you wondered what she does to stay trim and fit?

Have you also thought that it wasn’t within your reach to achieve that milestone?

If you are a working woman, juggling deadlines and dirty dishes on a daily basis, you probably feel like you just don’t have time to live a healthy lifestyle sometimes.

You might feel like you can never get the ideal body you want. And it doesn’t seem to matter if you work or stay-at-home, really.

The scary truth is that both sets of women, working and stay-at-home moms, or at least a large percentage of both, lead similarly sedentary lifestyles.

While the woman at home might lounge on the couch in the middle of a tiring day, the one at work is seated behind a desk, crunching numbers and attending meetings. Both scenarios are not ideal when it comes to fitness and overall health.

However, there are some ways to ensure that you get into shape and stay in shape, even with a busy workday looming ahead. The trick is to get into a lifestyle change rather than a quick-fix solution to a specific health issue.

Need help getting started? Check out these fitness tips for working women.

Fitness Tips for Working Women: Walk It Out
Walking is a surefire way to burn off the calories. You don’t have time for a walking routine? No problem. Walk while you talk. If you have to take a phone call, make sure you’re walking back and forth. You’d be surprised at how many steps you would take on an hour-long conference call.

Fitness Tips for Working Women: Stretch It Out
Stretch your limbs any time you can. We sit for so many hours behind a desk that we don’t even realize how numb our extremities become. For every hour spent at the computer, stretch your arms above your head for two minutes. Similarly, go for a short walk every hour or two, to keep the circulation going.

Fitness Tips for Working Women: Don’t Starve Yourself
Never skip your breakfast. It is very easy for the early-morning rush to overwhelm you and it becomes easy to grab a burger on the way to work. Stop, pause, breathe and set time aside for a hearty breakfast. It fuels you up to tackle the challenges of the day. Also, stock up on healthy snacks which you can access in the middle of a busy schedule. A fistful of nuts, dry fruits or a peanut butter sandwich is perfect for those mid-morning cravings without adding on the pounds.

Fitness Tips for Working Women: Tone It Up
Are you too busy to visit the gym? No problem. Pick up a couple of 500 ml bottles and use them as dumbbells at work. Use that tea break to do a few arm lifts and curls which will tone those muscles and work on the upper body strength.

Fitness Tips for Working Women: Drink Your Water
You’ve heard this one before. You’ve read about it in every fitness journal possible and you’ve heard the doctor tell you this each time you visit him for that yearly check up. Drink plenty of water. Water keeps you hydrated, feeling younger and more energized to take on the demands of a home/work balance.

These are not complete options when it comes to a sound mind and body. But they are a great way to start or get into a routine to set that lifestyle clock. Slowly, you can add more ideas into your day; an hour of exercise, a restricted diet or an evening of yoga. The point is, take those baby steps towards a fitter you, then you can jog your way into a hearty middle age.

About the Author

Ray Lehigh is a person with great passion for writing; he has written many articles on different topics like Medifast. You can look out for more on his other blogs related to health and beauty.

 

 

FYI: How A Child Support Collection Agency Works For You

Beyond Statistics: Portrait of a Former Teen Mom

How often do you judge a book by its cover? And how often have you been unfairly judged yourself? We’ve talked before about why we shouldn’t judge others and the impact it can have on our own lives. Today’s guest poster, my business partner and friend, Alyssa Ast, gives us a peek inside the mind of someone who is often judged by others who don’t take the time to get to know her.

Alyssa wrote this post back in 2010, originally as a guest post for my old site. I’m rerunning it here because I believe the lesson is still valuable and a good reminder for all of us.

Alyssa has become even more successful as a writer (and has grown her family by two, including the one she was pregnant with) since she wrote this piece, and she continues to impress me every day.~Angie

In Judgmental Eyes
By Alyssa Ast 

alyssaLet me give you a brief history lesson of the past 5 years of my life. I’m 23 years old and technically considered to be a single mother.

I got pregnant with my first son at 17, had my second son at 19, and I’m currently pregnant with my 3rd.

I haven’t completed a level of education beyond the 11th grade and needless to say I’m a high school dropout.

I live out of wedlock with my children’s father and don’t work a nine to five job.

You may now be thinking to yourself, well there’s what’s wrong with society. In judgment’s eyes I appear to be just like every other teen mother out there.

I bet you probably think I spend my nights partying as my parents watch my kids. I’m sure you’re even thinking this is why some people should not reproduce.

But if you peer a little deeper and take some time to lose the judgmental eyes, you may actually be surprised at what you would learn about me and my life.

While I’ve made more mistakes in my life than I care to admit, I can honestly say without those mistakes, I wouldn’t be who I am today. Now take a minute to get to know the real me.

I’ve lived with my soul mate, my partner, my best friend for the past 5 years. We have 2 beautiful children together and are expecting our 3rd in June.

Our family consists of days spent laughing under the sun and doing typical things families do together, with one minor exception. We believe in raising our children with the morals and values of the past that have long since been forgotten by most.

Although they are only 4 and 3 years old, my boys are well rounded children, and although they may get into trouble from time to time, they know the importance of respect for themselves and others- which so many children lack now and days.

Like I said, I’m a high school dropout and I don’t work a nine to five job. Instead, I test at college level education in every academic course, except math- which I currently hold a 12th grade education level.

I work from home and co-run a successful business. I’m a freelance writer, journalist, co-founder of the WM Network, and I’m about to publish my first book. And, all before my 24th birthday.

But all of these accomplishments sometimes go unnoticed in my life, because all some people see is my age. In judgmental eyes I’m viewed as a typical teen mother, without a wedding band on my finger, or a high school diploma.

Because of my age, people don’t take the time to notice I’m not one of those parents that’s out partying every night; in fact my parents may have watched my children twice in 5 years.

Because I lack a piece of paper verifying I completed general education courses, I’m viewed as being limited in my intelligence. And because I don’t leave the house every morning to go to work, I’m viewed as lazy and not contributing to society.

It’s very frustrating and emotionally exhausting to be viewed as an ignorant child in the eyes of society. Society has their mind set on stereotypes and most lack the capability to take a second to see what’s really behind some viewed as a stereotype. It isn’t anyone’s fault; after all being judgmental is a human’s nature.

However, please take 5 minutes to really look at me and see ME. Yes, I am 23 years old and expecting my 3rd child.

But please look a little deeper and see, I am a mother and although not legally, I am a wife. I am an educated and successful writer that follows my dreams to make a better life for my children.

I hold wisdom and maturity beyond my years, as I have grown from my past mistakes. Take a second to look and see that not everything is as it appears; sometimes you just need to look a little deeper for the truth.

More About Alyssa Ast

Alyssa Ast is an experienced Arizona based freelance writer, journalist, author, SEO/SEM, web developer and social marketing specialist, who enjoys working from the comfort of her home office. Alyssa works for many online companies and private clients, fulfilling their need for quality content, social marketing and developing their online business needs. Using her SEO and SEM knowledge, Alyssa optimizes traffic to online content and websites– increasing traffic, search engine ranking and profit potential. Read Alyssa’s full bio here.

 

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