Thursday, October 2, 2014

31 Days to Becoming Less Stressed, More Refreshed. Day 2: Live THIS Moment

Live THIS moment - The Cozy Nook

I am really trying to learn to soak in life, just to live THIS moment. After all, the CURRENT moments of life require a sufficient amount of my energy, thought, and emotion.

Sometimes stress will come because we are living other moments.

  • The past tries to rear its ugly head and remind us of disappointments and failures.
  • Other projects, rather than the one we are working on, haunt us and remind of us their existence or incompletion.
  • Future events, like the appointments and doings sketched on our full calendars, cause us to be scatter-brained and overwhelmed as we foresee all that is coming.

All of these situations rob us of the joys of the current moment.

If we could learn to live THIS moment and just focus on the current tasks at hand, we would live with less stress and more peace.

A couple years ago I had three children enrolled for fall soccer. When the season was about to start, I thought, “What did we do to ourselves?” Looking at the season as a whole seemed pretty daunting. However, God used that season to begin to teach me to live as life was unfolding: one soccer practice at a time, one meal at a time, one appointment at a time…

Life only requires us at this moment.

We must work towards being fully present in our lives and focus our hearts and minds on the tasks at hand.

Take Action: Today try to live in the current moments. Focus your energies on the here and now, not the past, not other projects, not other appointments. Live fully in your “now”.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

31 Days to Becoming Less Stressed, More Refreshed. Day 1: Embrace Change

Embrace Change - The Cozy Nook

Do you feel stressed?

Do you desire to feel more refreshed?

To go from Point A to Point B requires movement. It requires CHANGE.

There’s a good chance that your current circumstances aren’t going to change overnight.

There’s a good chance that you will wake up tomorrow living a life similar to the one you are living today.

If your life isn’t going to change much,
then YOU must.

If you want to go from stressed to refreshed, you must accept the challenge.

You are the one who is going to have to change your way of thinking, your outlook, and your habits.

As we begin this month with a goal towards refreshment and revival, I want you to stop and evaluate.

Are you really ready for change?

Are you ready to do what it takes
to feel less stressed and more refreshed?

Take action: Get a moment of quiet to yourself and devote your struggles to God, asking Him to give you the strength you need to make changes in your life.

31 Days Less Stressed, More Refreshed 100

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

31 Days to Becoming Less Stressed, More Refreshed!

31 days Less Stressed, More Refreshed 500

A while ago I saw the October challenge, a challenge that many bloggers are undertaking. The challenge is to blog each day for 31 days, throughout the month of October.

I had been mulling over the idea for a while and finally decided to go for it!

I am going to blog about STRESS. Yep, that big word affects all of our lives at one point or another, and it seems that it affects many of us continually these days. We do live in trying times.

This series comes from my own experiences, especially over the past couple years. I saw stress starting to affect me immensely, and this summer, I had a huge wake up call regarding my health (which may be another post some day).

Dealing with stress is a journey for me – a continual process that needs to be refined and performed. I see results, and that is the encouraging part!

It is my hope that over the next 31 days I will be able to help my readers in their daily struggles with stress and also get further along on my own journey!

It is my prayer that all of us will be
less stressed and MORE refreshed!

Day 1: Embrace Change

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Five GOOD Reasons You May Be Spending More on Groceries

5 Good Reasons You May Spend More on Groceries - The Cozy Nook

Have you ever read a post about how little someone spends on groceries and felt like a HUGE loser?

I have.
Many times.

Trust me. I am always trying to refine my spending and figure out how I can do better. However, I also know that I’m not going to match up to some of the grocery gurus out there.

Sometimes there are GOOD reasons why your grocery budget may be higher than someone else’s. I am hoping these reasons will put your heart at ease a little bit.

#1) You buy organic or better quality.

Truth be told, I like my foods to be good quality. I feel very blessed that I am able to buy better quality and can even stretch to buy organic when possible. We have split a 1/4 of an organic, grass-fed cow with my parents twice within the past 9 months, and I appreciate it!

#2) You buy more healthful foods.

I have heard people say that you will spend less if you stay away from processed and packaged foods and make things yourself. I do think that is true. However, if you are trying to eat healthfully, oftentimes you will find yourself spending more money. For instance, buying enough produce for your household to have multiple servings of fruits and vegetables every day can add to your spending.

#3) You are following a specific diet.

If you are eating a certain way to conquer chronic disease, lose weight, or some other noble reason, you may need to spend more money for a while, or maybe for life!

#4) You show hospitality.

If you are going to host parties, have friends over, entertain co-workers and the like, you will be spending more on groceries. No doubt about it! However, it is a noble reason to be spending more on groceries. As Christians, we ought to be a giving people.

#5) You are feeding multiple mouths.

In the same way that you would be feeding multiple mouths if you show hospitality, you may be feeding multiple mouths every day. That is a reason to rejoice! We should be thankful for the people God has put in our homes to share life with every day.

There are some GOOD reasons why you may be spending more money on groceries, and that may be okay!

Don’t frown and frump. Keep your head up. Establish your budget guidelines with your husband and continue to refine as you are able.

I, myself, plod on towards the goal of spending less and maintaining good quality and eating habits.

Now go buy those groceries!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Dark Chocolate Granola Bites

Dark Chocolate Granola Bites - The Cozy Nook

I made these little gems recently, and they are delicious. The entire family loved them!

They are full of healthy and yummy ingredients and are good for snacking, dessert, or even breakfast.

You can get the recipe here at Mel’s Kitchen CafĂ©.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Treasure Today for You Do Not Know What Tomorrow Will Bring

Treasure Today - The Cozy Nook

Yesterday my husband received some startling news. His co-worker passed away. It wasn’t just the fact that his co-worker passed away, but it was also the circumstances of the man’s life that made it seem all the more surreal.

A few weeks ago my husband traveled to Indiana for work, just for the sole purpose of celebrating this man’s retirement. That’s right… just a few, short weeks ago my husband was celebrating his co-worker’s retirement, and now he is gone.

I’m assuming my husband’s co-worker had plenty of hopes and dreams for his retirement, just as his wife did. Unfortunately, this man’s life was “cut short”, and he is unable to enjoy retirement.

Treasure today for you do not know
what tomorrow will bring!

Don’t wait for tomorrow.
Don’t live today with regret and dismay.
Don’t wait until your kids are grown up.
Don’t wait until you retire.
Don’t wait for something else to happen.

Live your life fully now.

In the midst of difficulty and pain choose to live today with vigor and hope.

Love the people around you.
Do good.
Serve God!

“You do not know what will happen tomorrow, for what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.’”   James 4:14-15

“Do not boast about tomorrow, For you do not know what a day may bring forth.”   Proverbs 27:1

Today is a gift that you have,
readily accessible at this moment.

Embrace today and live it the best you are able!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Tell Yourself This: “It’s Okay if Everything Isn’t Perfect”

It's Okay If Everything Isn't Perfect - The Cozy Nook

I have recently talked with a couple of moms. They are trying to “do it all”, but they are getting very discouraged when they are not getting it all done.

Their days are full but sometimes seem empty as they end their days with tasks left on their “To Do” lists.

They juggle ages and grades and needs and demands and feel like they fall short in many ways.

One day they excel at child training and earn extra points in the mom department, but their homes seem neglected, and they barely get dinner on the table.

When moms see another mom “getting it all done”, they ask, “What’s the secret?”

Well, let me tell you the big secret.

The big secret is that there is no secret.

None of us can do it all, perfectly.

There are way too many demands in life for us to get everything done perfectly without leaving ourselves high and dry.

You must give yourself grace, and a lot of it!

Work hard. Train hard. School hard. Play hard, and when the day is done, feel good about you and your family!

Don’t beat yourself up! Don’t strive for perfection!

Tell yourself this:
It is okay if everything is not perfect!

It really is. It is okay if everything is not perfect!

It’s okay if your house isn’t perfect.
It’s okay if your kids aren’t perfect.
It’s okay if your schedule isn’t perfect.
It’s okay if your “To Do” list accomplishments aren’t perfect.
It’s okay if YOU are not perfect.

All that matters is that you do your best, trying to please God as you do it.

Don’t strive for perfect. Strive for order.

Strive for Order, Not Perfection - The Cozy Nook