Picket Fence Blogs

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

April Showers bring May flowers

WOW! I don't know if you are in this winter weather 'Last Hoorah!' but we sure are! I am ready for May sunshine and my tulips think at 7 inches tall it's time already. We don't get too much moisture here in this dry corner and most of the time winter snow blows away into drifts but THIS time we have at least FIVE wet snowy slushy inches after beautiful t-shirt weather all last week. By this weekend we will be in sunshine and 70 degrees at track meets! Crazy Montana weather! I actually do appreciate how changing and on our toes it keeps us. Real life lessons can be learned from exposure to the elements. When the elements change fast it can be scary dangerous. Just like life and it's changing currents for the choices we have to make everyday. As adults we have to choose our lifestyle and be aware how our choices affect the family life or our co-workers. Some have aging parents or grandparents that you are now caring for in different ways, this adds a whole new dimension to how you choose to live. I have an eighteen year old who I often think isn't ready for all that real life. Just as the weather here can go from a 70 degree day to a 0 degree night with scary wind chill factor that could be fatal if not prepared, so does life sometimes take our sails out from under us. We try to equip our children and teach them to be ready but so much of what we learn is by experience. One of the hardest things for me to take is that I can't give my children my age experience. Even telling them what you know to be true sometimes backfires as they have to make their own decisions and bang their head against the walls they encounter or even cause themselves. THIS is SO hard to watch and let happen as they live their own lives. I often think that I can use the weather example when my kids leave unprepared and standing on a sideline freezing, or when the car has a flat and they left the phone, the jack and the tool box at home because it was just a short road trip... Or when the teenage girls scantily dressed for the sake of fashion on a crisp cold fall evening are miserable instead of chatty and fun like the girls who dressed to be warm and naturally pretty instead of show stopping! Amazes me what lessons in life we can learn and results we can have if we are open to learning and humbly looking to learn always! May you be blessed with a beautiful sunny Easter Tuesday and continue enjoying the spring season with al its bumps and trials!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

15 Minutes to Freedom! In the ER

15 Minute increments seem to be the way I have to live my day lately! And today I have just that window before heading into the home office to do some much needed business work. SO for free write I decided to set that timer and share a medical note with you all! MY DAUGHTER is 16! You know, that age where everything is so much bigger, badder and better all at once. (Do not repeat that I used 'badder' as a word, please?!) She had a few day sore a couple inches above her belly button and it got so painful that Saturday night after the day's busy events I ended up in the Emergency Room for what I hoped was simple infection but knew had to be looked at. AARGH! at ABOUT MIDNIGHT there I was with an abscess needing cut open, drained and dressed. Bless them , they were quick and the ER Dr. was great which made my evening. Part of this is a teenager's timing. 'I can ignore the pain and horror of this 3 day owie until I leave my friends' group and decide to pay attention to the pain exploding in my midsection...' Part of this is knowing that we can probably treat and heal this at home if someone would treat it properly.... oh the joys of parenting!!! Our incredibly high quality Melaleuca Oil has eradicated Staph in this girl before, so I have no doubt that in the beginning this was preventable. AGAIN, the joy of not making our children's choices as they get older. It was a lesson for me that she is still my baby no matter how independent she wants to be, and I think it was a lesson for her, I can only hope, as far as abscess treatments and medicine in the ER is concerned. Now she is treating an open wound with a big lump behind it and they will check for MRSA, staph and the healing tomorrow. Some bacterias you do not mess with when they get that angry... it scares me that she messes with and may not keep it super clean through this adventure, but, again, those are supposed to be real life lessons to give her real experiences for when I am not here to hold her hand!! May you always find a silver lining and a reason to smile and laugh through the midnight ER tromps with your littles!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Life Paralyzing You?

I'm in a challenge to free write for 15 minutes everyday. EVERYDAY!!! It is a Big challenge. I am busy. Just as you all are. When I get the chance to eat out, the choices paralyze me. When I have a quiet moment to fit something in...often it is do dishes or feel paralyzed. TOO many choices of things to do, to fix , to eat , to wear, to attend have surrounded our busy lives until some of us (the majority in studies) are actually stymied by the hundreds of options. I found it incredible to find out that given many options for Insurance plans many would choose none, even the benefits offered were hard to visualize through the pain of CHOICE. What if I choose wrong? WHAT IF I don't like their Reuben Sandwich? What if the French Dip looks better once it arrives? How silly! But true for some of us. And depressing if we can't decide quickly. Hampering really. Should I go to #2's or #3's basketball or #1's wrestling? Feel guilty the whole time because you were stretched 3 ways and missed the great play or the injury? Learn to not give in to guilt over a choice. Pray and go with it. I set a timer lately to make choices to begin and end a chore. Just as a helpful way to not get STUCK or centered on one thing for too long. If I hesitate and worry about making the perfect decision I WASTE A LOT OF TIME. I want to make a quick decision from a smart list of choices and be done with it! So I have to discipline myself to decide. AND NOT WORRY! You might be amazed to learn that the inability to make choices when faced with so many choices everyday is a serious cause of clinical depression! DOES NOT surprise me!! As one who has struggled in the past with Seasonal Depression and has to keep my chin up deliberately and BE GRATEFUL this was a very nice discovery. I am not alone. You are not alone if the busy lifestyle we all share these days because so many choices are available overwhelms you!! Embrace gratitude once a day! Make a decision to make a 15 minute spot to simply breathe. CHOOSE a simple salad or soup meal. DONE! Choose to set that phone with work down when your work hours are over. Be OK with not having to make the perfect choice, list just a few options that have what you need and DECIDE quickly. LESS IS MORE! Having less, doing with less, being ok with less CAN GIVE YOU SO MUCH MORE quality of life! Be happy, be well, be blessed- from our family to yours.

Monday, February 9, 2015

TASTY Gluten Free EASY Healthy PIZZA!

OH MY GOODNESS! I made successful cauliflower pizza crusts the other day and FINALLY (after 2 years) enjoyed this awesome treat! I liked it better than traditional crust and was so impressed (after reviewing many versions) with www.sandyskitchenadventures.com blog recipes on Cauliflower crust, Cauliflower breadsticks and all things healthier. Just thought I'd add a shout out for that great blog and hopefully she doesn't mind my unsolicited shout out! ;) (I did use regular eggs not egg beaters.) DO NOT be overwhelmed, this was easier than making bread or pizza dough. Simple, simple, simple! You just need a little time to bake them (35 TO 45 MINUTES) as it is a little longer baking, but they do freeze well, so you can make ahead of time. I added jalapenos to my topping and the leftover pizza the next day was amazing!! Cheesy fried cauliflower was what I tasted in the next day leftover pizza, although I must say the pizza crust wasn't even noticeably cauliflower at first serving. My family of ten had no idea what they were eating and polished off 5 dinner plate size pizzas! I added turkey pepperoni on their toppings. They did like it!! YAY! My only issue with this dish would be the ability to stick to a healthy portion! Share your favorite healthy dish? Maybe a dish you'd like to try but haven't yet? It took me so long to just DO this and I am so thankful to have a new favorite. Go for a newbie! Just Do It!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Halfway through 2014! Have you accomplished a lot in 2014 yet? Would you like to accomplish more financially, spiritually, physically and improve your outlook before 2015? I'm positive that most of us answer YES to that question. There don't seem to be enough hours in the day or days in the week to get it all done. Our busy lifestyles take over and we forget what it is like to feel organized, peaceful and secure. My 2014 has turned into one of those 'A-HA' years. I am growing up. I have maybe arrived at a secure personal achievement of mature growth. I feel settled. Maybe because I now know how to be comfortable in my own skin no matter what others may think. Maybe it is that I am successful. Ending the month of June for me means I am ready for the second half of 2014! YAY! It wasn't always so. I would love to hear what you have accomplished or what you are struggling to accomplish. I have dealt with grief, being broke, being depressed, failing- again and again... Do you need an ear or a shoulder? Sometimes it helps to have a sounding board. CARPE DIEM!!! Sieze the day. It is yours, nobody else can do so for you. ;)

Monday, June 16, 2014

Celebrate YOUR Monday with me!!?

I am having a great Monday and I thought,"Hmmmm....who have I lifted up lately?" What a blessing to have a smiling Monday! I can't say that this was always so....I used to open my eyes and groan the, "I hate Monday!" mantra....or, even worse, I would start dreading Monday morning on Sunday afternoon. Thus ruining my Sunday evening in the process! What a sad mess to be in! Can I listen, celebrate an achievement or empathize with your Monday??? I would love to lend my ear or shoulder to you. It is a PASS IT ON day for me. So please share what you would like with my family and maybe there is a need for me to be celebrating this Monday with you. This is going to go down as my personal favorite Monday the 16th, 2014 and I would like to include you in my memory of this day! How can I be of service to you today? Please share... :) Thank You!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

My thoughts on April 1st, 2014- stability- what does that mean to you?

April is here. Hello 2nd Quarter of 2014! I have had a lot of comments from my kids lately about the amount I work and how I work... and I thought, "yes" the majority of your working adult life should be when you are healthiest and busiest in your 30's. I spent my 20's working outside the home,harder than I do now, to not get very far ahead... 'I be smarter now' so my 30's have been more productive. I appreciate more fully the things that really matter. I know how to help others. 2 of my kids in the past week have friends who wish their mom's could work from home like I do (so they could homeschool)... I told them it was not one and the same and then realized- well, it is. Who gets to work and be with their kids everyday. At every activity I choose & have incredibly 'spoiled' children who know what it is to have mom available. I am building a retirment income in an unstable economy with my 8 children and I take care of other children who I am enjoying also. Hopefully we are a blessing to them all as I have so many blessings in my life. I hope I am teaching them what a WORK ETHIC is! And how you balance family and work wisely!