Thursday, March 31, 2011

Yesterday & Today - Week 11

The challenge for week 11 was to work on self portraits and using your own handwriting. Since I did a digital layout I opted for a computer font just for simplicity sack. I had fun trying to get the self portraits each day.  I really like my Sunday photo. I wanted something different so I took some photos of my reflection in a glass door. I wasn't sure how it would turn out and I liked the look.


I think I would like to do a layout like this for each member of our family.  Maybe during their birthday week...could be an annual thing.

Xnomads' Blog

Also, make sure you stop by tomorrow for the monthly One Little Word Blog Hop.  If you missed the previous month check them out here and here

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Part 1: Your Child has Food Allergies: Now What?


 
Welcome to the first part in my series of Coping with Food Allergies. These post are meant to be guides. They are not intended to replace medical advice. The information is my experience and is by no means all encompassing. There are many views and comfort levels when dealing with the issue of food allergies and I’m just stating one of those views. My goal is to help inform and educate people so they can navigate through this life changing diagnosis of a food allergy.

"Your child has a severe food allergy." When I heard those words I felt like the breath was punched out of me. We discovered this allergy over 6 years ago. I felt lost. How did this happen? What caused this? How do I keep him safe? Now what?

The first thing to do is breath. Know that you can get through this and that there are others to help you. There are many things to be done after a diagnoses. Here are a few things to consider doing to get you started:

1.     Work with a highly qualified pediatric board certified allergist.

Once you suspect a food allergy it’s important to get tested. The allergist can run test to verify the allergy. This is also a great place to start getting educated on how to handle a food allergy in your life.

2.     Carry 2 EpiPens

Your allergist should give you a prescription of an epinephrine auto injector. The most common name brand is EpiPen or EpiPen Jr. In our school district they are only trained in using this brand, so this is the only brand I will except when getting the prescription filled.  This medication can save someone’s live if they have a severe reaction, called anaphylaxis.  This will give you time to get to the ER for medical attention. You should always carry 2 EpiPens with your child at all times. You never know when a reaction will occur.

3.     Carry Benadryl (or other appropriate medication) for contact or mild reactions.

Some reactions can be mild, such as a rash or itching. Most people use Benadryl for those types of reactions and then just monitor the child to make sure a anaphylaxis reaction does not occur.

4.     Find a support group.

This was one of the best things I did for my sanity and education. I was lucky enough to have a local support group, but I also found a wonderful one on-line.  I’ll talk more about on-line resources in my next food allergy post.

5.     Educate family, friends, caregivers, teachers and of course yourself.

I cannot stress the need for education when it comes to food allergies.  The more you know and the more the people that come in contact with your child knows, the safer your child will be.

6.     Obtain a Medic Alert bracelet and have the child wear it.

I’ll admit I’m still working on this. In the beginning I didn’t see the need for this because my son was always with me. When he started preschool I bought one and he rejected wearing it. His skin is very sensitive and it really bothers him to have something like this on him. I didn’t push the issue because I felt he was dealing with enough. Now that he is older and I'm not always with him, I'm planning on getting one for him to wear.

Next week we will look at resources that have helped me and other families in our education about food allergies. 


Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. The posts on this blog do not constitute medical and/or legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Always discuss individual health questions, concerns and medical issues with a qualified personal physician.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Card Challenge

I had some time this weekend to do another card.  This time I used two challenges. The Play Date Cafe challenges was to use these colors:


and a new site I just found, Less is More is using this sketch for their challenge:


I'm also still doing my personal challenge of using the same stamp set six times.  These is the fourth project that I'm using the CTMH X-treme Set.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Meal Plan Monday



Yes, I'm on a roll...week 3.  This week we have a lot more than normal going on, so I know having a plan will help me out so much.  So without further ado...

Monday: Leftovers

Tuesday: Baked Manicotti Bundles (Clean Eating Magazine March Issue)

Wednesday: Shepard's Pie

Thursday: Hot Dogs, Alpatots & Fruit

Friday: Golden Potato Chowder (Clean Eating Magzine March Issue) with Grilled Cheese

Saturday: Mom's Eating Out with Friends....Order Pizza for everyone else.

Sunday: Oven Roasted Marinated Flank Steak (SavingDinner.com)

If you have been looking at my meal plans the last 3 weeks you will notice a pattern.  Every Thursday we have the same thing. This is kids pick night and they love having Hot Dogs & Alphatots. I usually eat left over or a salad, I'm not much of a hot dog person even if they are organic turkey dogs.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Clear the Clutter

This week I choose a mystery spot! Here's a photo of it:



I call it a mystery spot because there really is no name for it. It's the other side of my desk were no one can see unless they actually walk around and look at it.  Perfect spot to toss things and forget about them. Here's what I found:

  • Old Printer that needs to be sold or donate or recycled
  • Piles of paper to be shredded
  • Box of computer paper
  • Some storage containers
  • Dust Bunnies
  • Old Note Books
  • Office Supplies in the drawers

The area didn't take long to clean out.

  • The printer was moved to my sale prep area (basement)
  • Shredder and piles of paper were moved to middle of floor for sorting. Shred, Recycle, Scan.

  • Storage containers were moved with other containers
  • Vacuum took care of dust bunnies
  • Usable note book were put with school supplies
  • Drawers were kept and cleaned up

Since I had a pile of papers to shred already, I figured this was a great time to clean out my file drawer. I usually do this at the beginning of the year to get ready for tax time and to keep things manageable. Since I'm doing my taxes this weekend, I needed to get this done.  After removing anything from last year that needs to be shredded, my to shred pile grew quite large.




Now I know why I procrastinate on cleaning my files because now I have to spend the time shredding papers. Boring! My plan is to download a good audio book so I have something to listen to while I sit and shred this mess.  I really need to look into paperless opinion with my billing to cut down on this time consuming task. 

So here is my mystery spot after the clean up. I plan on putting a basket on top of the little file cabinet to put papers to be shredded instead of just having a pile on the floor. This will really help in keeping this out of sight space from becoming a huge mess.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Weekend ReFocus


To help refocus our family on the positive of our future and not the stress of the past year, we decided to go to the Great Wolf Lodge for some fun and entertainment.  The last time we visited the Lodge was about four years ago, so this time all the boys were old enough to really enjoy everything. We started out by spending a few hours in the water park. We started out slow, but once everyone was comfortable we headed for the "big" kid fun.  Dad and William played some water basketball, me and Kyle went on some of the tube water slides, and Logan enjoyed the kiddie slides.

The boys favorite part of the water park was the lily pads.



When we were tired of the water we headed for the Magic Quest shop to reactivate Will the Slayers (William) wand and to purchase wands for Fire Dragon (Kyle) and Momma Lover (Logan). You get to pick names for your Magi and these are what the boys picked. I love Logan's choice. I wonder if he will still want that the next time we go.

Magic Quest is my favorite part of the Great Wolf Lodge. You have nine quest you need to complete and then you can do other adventures. To complete the quest you have to run around three levels of the hotel finding different objects and waving your wand at them to register them. We went up and down stairs and hallways for about three hours. It's great exercise because it's fun and you don't realize that you are exercising. Before we left the lodge all the boys finished all the quest and tried a few adventures.

It was a wonderful time and a great way to re-energize our family.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Coping with Food Allergies



 It's something a parent will never forget. The moment the doctor says, “Your child has a food allergy”. The feeling of fear and confusion that sets in and all the questions that fill your mind can be overwhelming. What do we do? How did this happen? What can he/she eat? How will we keep our child safe?

I understand these questions. I've been asking this questions for over 6 years now when my son had his first PB&J. He just bit into the sandwich and his body started to react. His face began to swell up and turn red.  Within seconds you could not see his eyes because they had swollen shut.  It was a frightening experience. Since that time I’ve learned a lot about my sons allergy, but I’m still learning more every day.  And I still have questions.

I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of a wonderful local support group, FACES of Michigan.  Through this group I’ve learn different strategies on dealing with food allergies and the world. I've also relied on books and web sites to educate and support me when I needed help.

Over the years I’ve received phone calls or emails from friends stating they just found out their child has food allergies and they don’t know what to do.  So I decided to do a four part series here on my blog to help get people started.  These are the things I tell my friends to get them started on their journey in understand and living with food allergies.

Part 1: Your Child has Food Allergies: Now What?
Part 2: Resources: Books and Web sites that are worth looking into.
Part 3: Cooking and Eating Out: What to eat and What to ask.
Part 4: Going to School: Questions to have a Safe Education Experience.

My hopes in posting this information are to help people understand food allergies better and how to get help for their families.  Even if you don’t deal with food allergies in your family, I’m sure you know of at least one person living with this issue. I'm a strong believer that education is the key in keeping these precious children safe. The more people that know and understand the facts the safer we can keep these children.

I will post one part each week, so please come back to check out Part 1 next Wednesday.

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. The posts on this blog do not constitute medical and/or legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. Always discuss individual health questions, concerns and medical issues with a qualified personal physician.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Five



Five is a perfect number.
We have five fingers on each hand.
We have five toes on each foot.
It is easy to count by 5's. 
You give someone a high five when they do a good job.
In my birth family there were five kids and
now my family has five people.

It's the perfect number for me.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Meal Plan Monday



I've done it for two weeks now!!!  It's a record.  Having a meal plan figured out really made a difference in my week. I wasn't stressing out at 5:00 wondering what on earth was I going to put together for a nutritious meal. Last week really showed me the importance of having a plan.

Here is my meal plan for this week:

Monday: Spaghetti w/turkey meatballs served with garlic bread and salad.

Tuesday: Sesame-Crusted Tilapia with gingered green beans (from March 2011 Cleaning Eating Magazine)

Wednesday: Leftovers

Thursday: Applegate Farms Organic Turkey Hot Dogs with Ian's Alpha Tots and Fruit

Friday:  Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Veggies.

Saturday: Homemade Pizza with Veggie Tray

Sunday: Easy Garlic Broiled Chicken with Home Fries and Veggies

Friday, March 18, 2011

Clear the Clutter


I didn't have a specific goal in mind this week. I had a lot on my plate and didn't want to put extra stress and pressure on myself. I figured if I get around to one of my task - great!  If not, no big deal, there is always next week.  But I did do a little decluttering and started a project I've been wanting to do.

I've read about the power of an inspiration board many times. Every time I've read an article about this topic, I thought I should do that. But it never got to the top of my to do list.

I had a pile of magazine starting to grow and knew I needed to do something about them before they started taking over. I realized this would be a great time to start my inspiration board on fitness and health - since the magazines were related to those topics. I gathered the magazines, a poster board, scissors and glue and got to work.

I went through the magazines and ripped out any recipes or workout routines I wanted to keep. If a saying or picture inspired me I would cut it out and glue it onto the poster board. I gave myself 1 hour to go through all the magazines.  In the end I have a good start on my inspiration board and I no longer have a pile of magazines creating clutter.  The articles I tore out were put either into my recipe binder or workout binder right away, so I didn't create another pile of clutter.

I plan on adding to the board as inspiration hits and I'm going to hang it by my treadmill to keep me motivated. Who knew decluttering would help me get other items on my to do list done?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day



May green be the grass you walk on,
may blue be the skies above you,
may pure be the joys that surround you,
may true be the hearts that love you.

-Traditional Irish Toast


Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Yesterday & Today - Week 10

What have you learned in your life? This was the topic of Week 10 in the Yesterday & Today class. I struggled with this question. Some things are obvious but I wanted to try to look really down deep and see what I really learned in my life.


This layout was very different then anything I have done because there are no pictures. It's just words and a little design. That's one thing I love about taking classes because it really pushes you outside your normal work. I would have never done a layout like this on my own, but I'm so glad I did it! One thing I did when writing out what I learned was to not go back and edit. I ran a spell checker but I didn't remove anything that I typed and just left the brainstorm alone. I did this so that my perfectionist natural would not take over the information and try to change it to fit what Little Miss Perfect though should be included instead of what was true to my heart.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

House Cleaning



I'm not good at cleaning. It's not my thing. I had to learn that good enough was fine because when the house was dirty I would get crabby.  Some people are good at housework. That's there thing. Like my sister -  that's her thing. She was always good at keeping her house clean even when her kids were little.  She rocked at it!  But then again she's my older sister so she just ROCKS, plain and simple!  But that's a whole other story.

But why is it that housework is so hard for some to get a handle on? I don't really think anyone likes housework, it's just some are better at it then others. So how can someone like me, who's a recovering perfectionist who doesn't like clutter and dirt, but doesn't like to clean figure that out. So that's part of what I'm trying to do.

I started by creating a weekly housekeeping schedule.  This helped me get a basic flow to what I know I need to do each week.  The things that have really helped me keep things going with my schedule are:



1. Have a bottle of my all-purpose spray and a rag on each floor.  That helps me do a quick tiding up of bathroom counters or kitchen counters or spills on the floor. I also showed the boys how to do a quick cleaning when needed.

2. Take 10 minutes a day to hit the "hot-spots". You put a piece of paper on an empty counter and the next thing you know it's full of stuff and you have to straighten it out.  I figure if I can keep surfaces empty, clean and put things back were they belong they stay cleaner.

3. Limiting errands to one or two days so I'm not wasting time driven all over time.

I still don't like housework, but I feel I have better control over the house and the clutter is not taking over.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Meal Plan Monday

In my quest to get some things in order around my house I've been wanting to get my meal planning in order.  My evenings go so much better when I have a plan for dinner. Over the months I've been reading different blogs to get ideas for the best way to do a meal plan. There are so many ways to do your meal plan, but the best thing to do is just write something down. 

I have been slowly working up to posting a meal plan. I started with just planning a few days and now I've worked up to a whole week!! So I'm joining Organized Junkie with her Menu Plan Monday. If you need some help getting your meal planning going check out Organized Junkie's Guidelines, she has some great ideas that really helped me get started.



Here is what we will be eating this week:

Monday: Hawaiian Chicken with fresh baked bread - new recipe that I found from Organized Junkie's meal plan

Tuesday: Leftovers

Wednesday: Corned Beef & Cabbage, with Irish Soda Bread.  I know St. Pat's Day tomorrow but I won't have time to make this tomorrow.

Thursday: Applegate Farms Organic Turkey Dogs, Ian's Alpha Tots & Fruit

Friday: Pizza Night

Saturday - Eating Out

Sunday - Banana Oat Pancakes with Applegate Farms Sunday Best Bacon & Fruit

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Yesterday & Today - Week 9

I'm still playing caught up with my Yesterday & Today class.  I thought Week 9 would be so easy to do. The assignment was to document one day in my life.  Now I've done Ali's week in a life class twice, so one day should be so easy. My problem was picking a day. Last week everyday had something strange going on that was not "normal" so I didn't think it was a good day. 

Opps....Little Miss Perfect came for a visit. I was waiting for the perfect day to document instead of just documenting a day. So I told myself, "Self, stop waiting for the right day and just do the assignment!".

I finally put pencil to paper and started keeping track of my time for one day. I had to keep reminding myself to snap a few photos here and there.  This is the out come of a day documented.


I really need to do more pages like this. I enjoy reading about the everyday things that occupied our time and that are so easy to forget. I also get a kick out of the detailed photos that will mean so much more 5, 10, 15 years from now.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Clear the Clutter

This week I need to tackle some of the clutter in our computer/craft room.  We have a lot of clutter in this room so I have broken it down into smaller areas.

The first area included one of the flat surfaces that has turned into a caught all. It has our camera equipment, office supplies, crafting supplies and lots of dust.  It was an eye sore and needed to be cleaned up.

 
The cabinet above this area looked like this. A pile of cables and chargers and a lot of wasted space.










The third area was another cabinet that was home to our computer software and manuals.  Good luck finding anything in there without everything falling out on top of you.





First thing I did was remove everything from the cabinets.  I asked my hubby for some help figuring out what was still needed and what was junk.  Surprise, surprise, most of it was junk!  I put cables, booklets and CDs for equipment into ziplock bags to keep items together.  For example, the leapster bag has the cable to hook it to the computer and the software CD. These were all put into a basket.


Now check out this wonderful cabinet! Only the current manuals. A box for any software CDs and the basket with ziplock bags. You can actually find something without everything falling out.


The camera equipment cabinet got the same treatment. Everything was removed. The stack of tapes now have a home in a small box. The chargers for all the different equipment are in a large box. Now there is room to put the bag and equipment in the cabinet.  I might purchase a shelf to put in this cabinet to put the equipment on to make it easier to get into the box.


My cabinet counter can now be seen again and it helps bring the creative energy back into this space.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Quiting Time

 
I'm a strong believer in finishing what you started. I try to teach my children the same pride in a job well done. If they join a sport or other program, they must see it through until the end.  But does this concept work for everything.


I use to be of the mindset that once I start a book I must finish it. This was a perfectionist trait and one that would drive me crazy. I've read books in the past that were torture to finish. And I'm not talking about the books I had to read in school. These were books for pleasure reading and I would force myself to finish every last word on every last page.

One example would be the book Eat, Pray, Love.  I know Oprah enjoyed this book and over half the female population loved it. It was painful for me to read this book. (Please don't attack me if you loved this book) I would keep picking it up thinking this has too get better. Everyone likes this book, there has to be a reason. When I finally reached the end I felt betrayed. I just wasted my precious time on reading a book that I didn't like from the first chapter. 

So when is it okay to call it quits?

I know some books start out slow and then grab you. This happened with The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo. The first few chapters did not grab me, but after that I couldn't get enough. I recently started a new book A Soft Place to Land by Susan Rebecca White. The back cover sounded like something right up my alley. It was a story about the love between two sister. I started reading it and after a few chapters I'm just not feeling the love (or like) for this book.  I actually haven't picked it up in over a week. So do I give up?

The perfectionist in me says: No, you must finish what you start! Your not a quiter! I'm a strong believer in finishing what you start, but since this is not affecting anyone but me, I feel that it's negotiable. The imperfect reality is that I'm not going to like everything that I pick up or everything that's the big buzz and it's okay to move on to something better. I plan on putting this book back on my pile of yet to read material and maybe down the line give it another try.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Game Time

Wii.
XBox 360.
DS.
Playstation.

I'm tired of all of them. I can count on one argument that revolves around video games at least once a day. I'm not a big fan of video games. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy them on occasion, but not every day.

We have tried different ways of controlling the amount of video time in the past. Lately the video time has gotten out of hand and I'm tired of being the referee.  A few weeks back at teach mama there was a post regarding video time.  I took that as my clue to try a new system.

I first made game tickets for each of the boys.  I gave them a heads up that things were going to change and then had a meeting with them to discuss the new rule for game time.  Here's were their tickets are stored and the rules.



Game Time Rules

·      Wii, Xbox, DS or other gaming systems are played only on weekends – Friday, Saturday and Sunday. (Exception: Snow days or unexpected days off)

·      Cards can be used only for Learning Games during the week.

·      Screen time starts after school.

·      New Cards on Monday

·      Cards total 1-2 hours per day depending on Reading Time.

·      Kids can cash in their cards whenever they want, but when they’re gone, they’re gone.

·      Kids can watch one show (no more than 60 minutes) after homework is complete.

·      Game time is forfeited if grades fall below a C or 3.


We have been doing this for only a week now, so we will see how this goes. I'm sure we will need some tweaks and changes along the way, but it's a start.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

In with the Old


I know the saying is "out with the old, in with the new", but the old can be new too.

When my boys were younger they were big into Thomas the train.  We have two large totes just packed with track, buildings and trains. We would play with the trains on a daily bases, but like most things they started to loss interest in the trains and moved on to other toys. So I took the totes and packed them away in a storage closet. And there they sat.

Last weekend I decided to pull out the totes and see what would happen. It was like Christmas! The boys (and me) had so much fun building a track in the living room. Our goal was to use every piece. The trains provided hours of entertainment and moans when it was time to put them away for the night.



The next morning the boys started building another track before school. I was really surprised by this...I thought the magic would only last one day. After school and homework they were back to playing with the trains.  This has gone on for a week now.

I love seeing what configuration they come up with for the track. I enjoy watching them interact with each other. I'm a big believer in rotating toys and this really proved that absent makes the heart grow fonder.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Yesterday & Today - Week 8

Wow...I don't know what happened but I've fallen behind in my Yesterday & Today class.  In week 8 we switched gears and started documenting today stories. Maybe that is what cause the screeching halt to my creative juices. I think the bigger problem was getting current photos to use in the layout.

Last week, I spent some time finalizing my list of perspective prompts. From those prompts I decided what type of picture I would like to have of me to go with the prompts. I looked back through the past year and picked out some photos. The prompts that I didn't have a photo for I decided to set up the camera and used the handy-dandy self timer.


One of the requirements was to have me in each photo, since the layout was showing my perspective as of today. I'm really happy with the "see" photo because I was able to capture my reflection in the ipad screen.  I just wish I had cleaned the ipad screen before the photo was taken!

This was a wonderful assignment because I really had to think about 'right now'.  I can see using this same layout but changing the prompts.  Maybe something like the cost of living today. Or compare things from the year you were born and now. Or your different titles - mom, sister, wife, daughter, student, maid, cook, etc. There are many possibilities.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Play Date Cafe Challenge

The Play Date Cafe had a very interesting challenge this week. The color splash! The challenge is to use Black and White and only a limited use of color. I loved this idea. Black and white always look so elegant and classy, but it can also look grungy and modern. So I grabbed my CTMH X-treme stamp set...do you see a pattern with my challenges lately?  
 

Yes I've used this stamp set for the last month of challenges.  I have my own personal challenge to use one stamp set to create at least 5 different projects before moving on.  Check out this post and this post to see what I've done already with this stamp set.

Thanks for stopping by for a peek!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Clear the Clutter


Last week we had winter break.  My boys and I took advantage of the time off to do some decluttering. I talked about one of our projects on this post. They did such a great job with cleaning their closet I thought it was a good idea to tackle another growing problem in our house: stuffed animals.

I think stuffed animals reproduce! I don't know how we get overrun by them year after year. The boys have a toy box in their rooms for stuffed animals. The problem was that there was no way to close the box anymore. The animals were on the floor, under the bed, in the basement, everywhere in the house. I could find at least one stuffed animal in any room I walked into.  It was time to give some of these cute little guys to someone that needed them.



Our first step was to get all the stuffed animals throughout the house in one location. We put them all on the floor so it was easy to see them.


Each child was able to pick 5 toys they wanted to keep.  Those toys were put on their bed.  Then they had to pick 5 toys to donate.  Those went in the hallway.  We did 4 rounds of this, so the boys had 20 stuffed animals on their bed. Next they were allowed to look at the toys in the hallways and trade if they wanted to keep one of them.  Things were going well up until this point. We started seeing some tears because it was hard to decide on a few. So being the softy I am, I let them keep a few extra.

I explained to them that these toys will be going to other children that don't have so many toys and that they will be loved and played with by those children. When we were done, we ended up with a large lawn bag overflowing with stuffed animals.


And we still have over 60 stuffed animals in the house.  Which I think is too much, but they do love them and play with them often and I can only handle so many sad tears from my children.

So what I'm I going to do with all those toys? I plan on calling around to some shelters or churches to see if they can use them to brighten a child's day.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

One Little Word Blog Hop

Xnomads' Blog

Hello and welcome to my blog!
  If you are coming here from Katrina blog, I'm glad you could stop by.  I hope you are enjoying this One Little Word Blog hop.  If you are unfamiliar with One Little Word be sure to visit Big Picture Classes or Ali Edwards Blog for more information. The short explanation is instead of a resolution for the year, you have a word to inspire you.

My word for this year is IGNITE.  If you would like to see what I've posted about my word already please check out this post.

This months was all about seeing my word through the lens of my camera. The goal was to get nine photos that either literally or figuratively represented my word.  At first I was worried, I wasn't really sure how I was going to capture my word in photos.  So I started with the literal photo first: a candle burning

This represents my goal of igniting peace in myself and my life. To relax and not be so stressed and to stop questioning my pass decisions.

The figurative photos were much harder. I didn't know where to start. I decided to make a list of the areas in my life that I want to ignite this year.  Once I had this list I needed to think of ways to represent these passions.

Anyone that knows me, knows I'm not a church goer. But that doesn't mean I don't believe. I want to ignite my faith by opening my heart to a more powerful being. I'm not sure how this will come about, if by going to church or reading books on spirituality. I will have to wait and see what happens this year.


The last year my life has been very off balance. I need to ignite balance by looking at how I spend my time, energy and money and make sure I'm spending these resources to bring balance to my life.


My health is very important to me. I've made many changes over the years to be healthier. I want to ignite my health by only putting food that was grown and not processed into my body.


To ignite my strength, I need to push myself beyond my normal routine. I've lost around 50 pounds in the last 3 years and now I want to be fit and strong.


Just taking this photo ignited my joy. I had to do many takes with the auto timer to get a decent photo. I want to bring back the joy in the little things, in the mundane things, in the everyday things. Life is too short to be crabby about folding the laundry. I need to find the joy in the task and focus on that beautiful feeling.

I want to find time to play more. Igniting my creativity is important to me for my future professional goals. I'm not always going to be a stay at home mom and I want to focus on my creative side this time when I re-enter the work force.

I didn't have a clue how I would capture this word in a photo until I woke up early one morning and saw this beautiful sunrise. I want to ignite my sense of adventure by not only seeing things, but doing more things.

Last but not lest I want to ignite the love I have for my family, my friends and for myself. Too often I get my priorities mixed up and need to put the love and adoration I have for the people in my life first.


So there you have it.  Ignite in pictures.  I hope you come back to see how I can ignite these aspects of my life.  If you enjoyed what you saw, please leave a comment. And now onto your next stop on the One Little Word Blog Hog.  Your next destination is over at Mandy's Blog.  Thank you for stopping by and if you get lost along the way here is a complete list of all the stops on this Blog Hop.

1.    Margie                          http://xnomads.typepad.com
2.    Monica B                      http://scraplifters.blogspot.com/
3.    Jill                                 http://jillconyers.typepad.com/
4.    Miranda                        http://mirandasscrapsite.blogspot.com
5.    Donna                           http://www.donnabryantdurand.blogspot.com
6.    Lynn                             www.crafty-creativity.blogspot.com         
7.    Stacey                           http://www.TheAcornGarden.com/blog
8.    Lisa                               http://backtoallen.com/writers_blog
9.    Cassie                           http://craftycassiescorner.blogspot.com
10. Abbey                            http://athomewiththerichardsfamily.blogspot.com/
11. Nicky                             http://seejanebake.blogspot.com
12. Holly                              http://lovingrobots.blogspot.com
13. Karen                             http://breathenowsmile.blogspot.com
14. Claudia                          http://creative-moms.com
15. Rebekah                        http://istampscrapcraft.blogspot.com
16. Kimberly                       http://foreverdaisies.blogspot.com
17. Kat                                 www.katswonderings.blogspot.com
18. Kristina                          http://ciqis.blogspot.com
19. Jan                                  http://mysimplelittlelife.typepad.com
20. Nikki                              http://www.inkyart.com.au/
21. Amanda                          www.scrappnbee.blogspot.com
22. Lisa                                 http://luluoz.typepad.com
23. Sam                                 http://learncreatedo.wordpress.com
24. Maureen                          http://cookingmylife.blogspot.com
25. Kristi                               http://theprojectofme.wordpress.com
26. Tere                                 http://terecontodomicorazon.blogspot.com
27. Karen                              http://womenontractors.blogspot.com
28. Katrina                            http://k84mansramblings.blogspot.com
29. You Are Here                  http://questtoperfectimperfection.blogspot.com
30. Mandy                             http://captureandcreate.wordpress.com
31. Lisa                                 http://makeyourownescape.blogspot.com
32. Chrissy                            http://getcraftywithchrissy.blogspot.com
33. Lee                                  http://thelinarstudio.typepad.com/embracelife
34. Jen                                   www.byjen.com
35. Sylvia                              http://baxtersmom1.blogspot.com/
36. Christianne                      http://christiannemarra.blogspot.com/
37. Cheri                                http://cheriandrews.blogspot.com
38.  Joy                                  www.undiscoveredjoy.blogspot.com
39.  Beth                                http://justbebeth.wordpress.com/
40.  Jennifer L                       www.studiojenn.blogspot.com
41.  Kathryn                          www.katlodesigns.com
42.  Heather                          www.scrappyhare.blogspot.com
43.  Cindy                             http://seriousplay.typepad.com
44. Cynthiau                         http://paperpapereverywhere.blogspot.com/