motherhood, Uncategorized


I am a woman, a mother, one in a long line of many.

I stand strong in my decision

to conceive,

to nourish,

to birth,

to feed,

to educate

my children


As so many have done before.

To go in public with no makeup

and know that I’m beautiful

and desirable

and loved

and a warrior.

That my strength comes from within.

That I hold the power of the Universe within.

That I’ve held the future generations.



Uncategorized, motherhood, Power of Positivity

How Motherhood Became My Meditation

You’re laughing right now, no? You’ve landed here because you have a house full of kids who need you, piles of laundry and dishes to do, and blueberries smashed into your dining room floor. You don’t have time to meditate. Oh wait, that describes my day. A teething baby, a two year old who is, well, two, and a preschooler who wants to read and learn ALL THE TIME. No, I’m not complaining. Yes, I am admitting that sometimes I wish she’d do it a little more independently, because someone has to fold all that laundry. And truth be told, it’ll probably be my husband.

I’ll admit I struggle with being a patient mom. I want to do things quickly and efficiently, which most of the time means doing them myself. I hate cleaning the same mess over and over. I have seriously considered becoming a nudist family because of all the laundry. And there are days I just want to run away and hide. It’s all too much. The worst is adding a crying baby on top of all the other demands, I can’t deal with it. Some moms can go about their day like it’s no big deal, but a screaming baby gives me anxiety.

Maybe it’s knowing he’s the last baby, that I’ll never get these moments again, but I’ve had to learn to slow down and deal with one thing at a time, to really be present in each moment. My kids deserve at least that much from me. If my baby is crying, I stop what I’m doing and tend to him. If my toddler needs (yet another) snack, I stop and get her one. I hug them all a little longer and a little more often than I use to. Why the change from all-anxiety-all-the-time to relative peace and calm? Well, it wasn’t a fast or easy transition. It wasn’t even entirely intentional. I mean, yes I wanted to be a better mom, but I really just wanted to deal with my own shit.

I needed to be more grateful, more positive, less anxious. I needed to go back to that place I was in when I got my Reiki Master’s: so much good energy, intuition, creativity, patience, and love. I missed that sense of well-being. And I wanted it back.

But with three kids, life is chaotic. It’s hard to meditate with all of them playing, climbing on you, making messes, and being the noisy little people that they are. Then it hit me: this is the meditation. I don’t need a quiet moment to enjoy all of my kids playing together in the floor. I don’t need a sacred space to appreciate giggles and tiny hands around my neck. This moment, this space, is enough. I just need to quit running from it, quit trying to escape the chaos, and let it be what it is. They aren’t trying to ruin my day, or interrupt my peace; they are kids, just playing and learning and enjoying life.

A local midwife posted a picture on a Facebook group that said “I’m not naughty, I’m two, and I’m still learning.” This brought me to tears. Ugly crying, y’all. I had been so hard on my kids trying to make them behave, trying to make them pick up their toys, or eat all their dinner, or not play in the sink, that I’d forgotten that they are KIDS. They are trying to make sense of their world the best they know how. I don’t need to stop them from making messes, I need to show them the best way to clean up. I don’t need to say no every time they want a snack, I need to show them the proper way to prepare their own food.

Again, this transition didn’t come quickly, easily, or naturally. Impatience been engrained in me. Heck, it’s been engrained in our entire culture. Think of all the baby products for sale. How many of them are beneficial to the baby? Very few. Most of them are beneficial to the parents, they help manage the inconvenience that is life with children. That’s how I’d seen my life as a mom: as a series of inconveniences that interfered with doing what wanted to do. I lived for those moments of escape when I could hand them over to Daddy and go do something by myself. But I was looking at it all wrong.

The biggest shift (other than that quote from the midwife on Facebook) happened when we decided to homeschool and I started researching curriculum. I came across this thing called “unschooling,” which is basically making all of life a lesson. That struck me as so rich and beautiful and powerful. I started researching, reading books, joining Facebook groups, devouring blogs. I threw myself into this notion that my kids need to learn from EVERYTHING in life, and it changed my whole outlook. All of a sudden I saw them as independent learners on their own path. They don’t need me to direct, they need my support. They need me to guide them. They need me to (gulp) take a backseat and let childhood just happen naturally. They need me to recognize when they are struggling with something and show them the way, not punish them for being frustrated. They need me to not be the reason they lose the twinkle in their eyes, their spark, their creativity.

And with this slow, gradual, change, I found myself changing too. I became more patient. I started noticing their lightbulb moments, and looked for reasons to create even more of them. I started saying “yes” a lot more. No, I’m not more permissive, I just gave up the idea that I need to control everything simply because I’m an adult. No, they don’t get to spend their days eating candy and watching TV. No, they don’t get to talk back or be disrespectful. No, they don’t get out of doing chores or contributing to the home. And yes, I still tell them what to do. A lot. After all, kids’ brains aren’t developed enough to understand impulse control and long-term consequences. But once I quit saying “no” just because I could, they started respecting my authority a lot more.

I’m not saying it’s gotten any easier, but motherhood has gotten a lot more peaceful since changing my perspective about how I speak to my kids. And who knows if true “unschooling” is really a long-term goal for us, but I’m madly in love with the idea of keeping our home a place of no-judgment learning. It’s made motherhood into more than just a job; it’s magical now. I look forward to spending the day with my kids, and don’t feel the need to escape, either physically or mentally. It’s become my mediation.

Uncategorized, motherhood

Hello There, Spring!

Today we went to a friend’s acreage and played. We intended on having a work day and helping them clean, but the first blades of grass peeking through and the almost-warm weather combined with a gassed-up four wheeler to pry us away from our work and into the muddy pasture. Donuts were done, mud was thrown, dogs were chased. We came home covered in dried mud and smiles. It was so peaceful and amazing to get the first truly grounding experience of the year; it was what I’ve been looking for and missing in my daily meditation for several weeks. Now that we all have had the first taste of outdoors for the year, it’ll be hard to keep us inside!

The kids asked soooooo many questions. Why is the green grass coming up while there’s still brown grass? Are frogs and snakes the same thing but with legs? Do they freeze to death in the cold? How does the rain fill up the pond? When is it really Spring? Does Spring mean it’s getting hot? These days are so meaningful, how can they not be considered educational? That, my friends, is how kids learn. They learn because they want to know about the world around them, and it’s our job to answer every question as best we can.

We don’t really have Spring rituals, though I wish we did. We plant seeds and, later, baby plants that we get from local nurseries. Going plant shopping is my FAVORITE! We also switch up the décor around our home just enough to bring some color in. A few bright quilts and pillows thrown around and some fun watercolors that we make together. Maybe this year we’ll add in some school-related fun and make some new traditions.

Anyone do fun stuff to welcome Spring? Any ideas for preschoolers?

Power of Positivity, Uncategorized

Social Media And The Power Of Positivity

This Power of Positivity/Power of Attraction seems to be a theme around here. And why not? It’s life-changing. I’ve written about how minimalism affects our mental state and the difference between sacrificing and prioritizing, but there’s another area that we all (ugh, myself included) need to stay on top of: social media. How many times a day do you scroll through your Facebook and Instagram feeds? For me it’s pretty much every time I sit down to nurse the youngest kid, so every 6.3 seconds. Anyone else?

So it’s safe to say we spend as much time looking at our devices as we do looking around our house. Maybe more. If we get our house cleared of all the “ugh,” why not do the same with our social media? How many posts do you see per day that are complaints, bad news, or gossip? How many people do you follow that are a negative influence? And now for the big question: what’s the worst that could happen if you “unfollow” them? I’m not saying unfriend them, especially if you know them in real life and may have an awkward confrontation about it at the next holiday dinner, just get their “ugh” of your screen.

Also, how many news stations do you follow? I don’t have cable TV at home, so I get all my news online. It’s nice not to have the negativity and drama on all the time, but then it’s RIGHT THERE when you open your phone. Again, what’s the worst that happens if you unfollow them? You may miss something important? I guarantee you they have websites that you can visit when you feel the need to be informed of what’s going on in the world. My husband has ZERO social media accounts, but he’s probably the most informed individual I know. He also has the largest network of actual human people of anyone I know. And he’s the most positive person I know. That isn’t a coincidence.

So if you unfollow all the Negative Nellies and the News Stations, what’s left? Nothing. You sit in boredom all day. I’M KIDDING. Actively seek out social media accounts that make you feel good. Look for ones that inspire you to be more creative, that give tips on the things you aspire to be, and where the people are authentic and living life to the fullest. Yes, everyone has a bad day, and a lot of social media influencers have gained their success through their authenticity, which includes being vulnerable with their emotions. There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s a good thing. It’s proof that we’re all human and that you can have a bad day without unpacking and camping out in it.

Personally, I love following accounts that are centered on yoga, healthy food, beautiful homes, and moms who are crushing homeschooling. My Instagram feed is the thing I reach for after coffee (see my morning routine here), and it’s always full of inspiration. There are days when it’s the only reason I get on my mat, even if it’s just to try one new pose that I saw online. Raw and honest, but hey, it’s better than NOT getting up and trying something new, yes?

While we’re on the subject, how many of you have been on the receiving end of bullying from Facebook “support” groups? Just me? Guys (and girls), please, if you’re in a group and you see this happening, even if it isn’t directed at you, leave a post saying that you don’t want to be part of it, and then leave the group. Just leaving is good, but bringing attention to the problem is even better, and may give other people courage to do the same. I love Facebook groups, I really do. Some of the best life tips I’ve ever read have been on mommy groups, but it’s taken years of cultivating those to only be parts of ones that are uplifting and empowering. It’s now a pleasure scrolling through these pages, because I know that I’ll be seeing inspiring posts, and that if I do come across something degrading and mean, that I can just make my leave and not be part of it.

Please, folks, I’m begging you, go clean out your social media feeds. Do it now. Stop reading this post and Go. Do. It. You’ll thank me, and more importantly, you’ll thank yourself.

Power of Positivity, Uncategorized

Prioritizing Versus Sacrificing: The Power of Positive Thinking

I was thinking recently about how close my family is to making some big changes, and the steps that have lead to this point. You all know that I’m a fan of the Power of Attraction, and there’s one thing that has made a huge difference in my attitude, and thus the things I’m attracting:

I don’t believe in sacrificing for the things I want.


Yes, there are times I have to wait on something that I want or need because it doesn’t fit in with the bigger picture. But that’s not a sacrifice. It’s merely a matter of prioritizing what’s important.

Let’s say your dream is to be debt free so you can travel, but then you come across a shiny new car that you really want. You buy the car, and you love it, but it sets you back $30,000 from your goal. You are getting a temporary fix of happiness, but it won’t last. You’ll eventually come to hate making that payment every month, which will only attract more debt and unhappiness in your life, and maybe even cause you to give up on your bigger dreams of a life of travel. BUT…if you wait on the car (and I do mean wait, because it’s not a matter of if but when) and keep your eye on the prize, you’ll meet your goals much sooner. Perhaps waiting until you’re debt free to buy a nice travel trailer will provide you with the same happiness that you were looking for in the car, but the happiness will last much longer because you didn’t give up your dreams to make it happen. Or maybe you get out of debt then buy the car, and use it to travel the country and camp everywhere you go. Imagine living your dream, and doing it completely debt free.

But, what if my current car is a hunk of junk? Well, my friend, think long and hard about how much it’s costing you to keep it running (surely it isn’t more than a car payment and insurance on a new one), and perhaps your attitude toward it. Are you thankful to have a running vehicle to get you around? Because we know that gratitude is the first step to manifesting the things we want, right?

This is where we’ve been the last few years, saving up to buy a house on some land. It’s been a dream for years, and we only really started working toward it the last four or five. Which is dumb, we probably should have done it before we had kids and still had two incomes. But, live and learn. The point is, yes, we’ve put other things on hold. We haven’t had a vacation in four years. We drive paid-for cars. We live in a really small older home. But we’re thankful for every bit of it, and it doesn’t feel like sacrificing because we know we’re working toward our bigger goal. We’re prioritizing.

I wrote recently about minimizing and the power of attraction, which has been a HUGE step in this process. We aren’t surrounded by junk that makes us feel mentally and physically bogged down, so it’s much easier to be grateful for everything we have and look forward to a bright future.

What are you wanting to manifest in your life? Are you making it a priority? Are you thankful for what you have in the mean time?

motherhood, Power of Positivity

The Morning Routine That Keeps Me Going

Motherhood is rough, y’all. If anyone says it’s not, they’re either lying or they have a lot of help. I’ve written before about staying sane with three under five (15 Minute Parenting) and (Babywearing), and have another secret that is absolutely VITAL to my making it through the day: my morning routine.

What? Routine? That’s like…a four letter word around here. But yes, there are four things I do every single morning that make the difference in not losing my shit by the end of the day.

The very first is cuddle with the Hubby. He works late, so I’m usually (hopefully) asleep by the time he gets home. We don’t get the bedtime kisses and cuddles and pillow talk, so we get it first thing in the morning. And most days that’s the only moments we get kid-free. We check in, talk about the night before, and plan the day ahead. It’s a rather nice way to get things started.

The next three happen in a very specific order, not to be messed around with: drink a big glass of water, a cup of coffee, and eat a good breakfast.

We all know we need to drink more water, but there is NOTHING in the world that will make you chug a glass faster than nursing a little monster all night. Trust me, you wake up EMPTY. Even for those of us that aren’t nursing, a big glass of water is a great way to get your body to wake up. It’s been in rest mode all night, your digestive system is still groggy, and nothing says “rise and shine” like getting it rehydrated.

Next…coffee. Don’t lecture me on drinking coffee while nursing. I’m not perfect, and it’s much better than soda. I didn’t drink coffee for several years while I was in the baby-having mode, but something about that third kid made me need the extra little help in the mornings. My family needs me to be able to adult, and let’s face it, with three under five, you never really get a good night’s sleep. So yeah, I indulge in one good cup of Joe to get things going.

Lastly, a good breakfast. Again, nursing all night will leave you EMPTY. I wake up starving. And that cup of coffee I just had will wreak havoc on an empty stomach, so a good protein-packed breakfast is the natural next step. Your metabolism is highest first thing in the morning, so if you’re going to have an indulgence, this is the time to do it. I try to limit the “cheat” meals to just one per week, though, and the rest of the time it’s some combination of meat, potatoes, and veggies. Yes, I said veggies. We eat them at breakfast because it’s often the only meal we all get to eat together, and sometimes the only “real” meal that happens during the day. So if we go off track the rest of the day, at least we’ve had one good serving of veggies.

It isn’t foolproof. Some days we get woken up waaaaay too early and have zero motivation. Other days we have early appointments and don’t have time for the big breakfast, so I’ll boil a dozen eggs and chop some fresh fruit the night before. Other days I’m out of coffee and end up in the Starbucks drive-through before I manage to get anything productive done.



My Top Tip For Surviving Life With Three Under Five

I’ve posted before about staying sane with three kids (read about 15 Minute Parenting here), but there is one thing I left out. Sometimes you NEED more than 15 minutes. Sometimes your baby is teething, your toddlers need attention, and your house is disgusting, and you Just. Can’t. Do it. Nope, I’m not talking about shipping them all off to Nana’s house (though that does sound nice, but the little one would be awful grumpy that far away from the boob).

I’m talking about baby wearing.

Yep, throw the little tike on your back. Or belly. Or side. Heck, wear the kid on your head if that frees up a hand.

This has literally saved my sanity more than once.

The last couple days (weeks, months) have been rough. I’ve been exasperated just trying to keep my head above water. The fact that the kids are all alive and we haven’t been featured on Hoarders is a small miracle. I was *this close* to snapping, when I looked through my diaper bag and saw our carrier, right where I’d left it after our last day trip. It was a sign. I needed two free hands. The toddlers needed some Mommy time. And little guy needed a nap. The four year old helped strap him onto my back; within minutes he was out cold.

This is our third kid, but our first soft structured carrier (SSC). With the first baby, I had a Moby and a homemade ring sling. I loved them, but with only one kid I didn’t really need that much hands-free time. With the second baby, I didn’t wear her at all. She HATED both the Moby and the ring sling. And I was a miserable mess, sometimes I’d go days at a time not being able to put her down. Looking back, life would have been much different if I’d have bought a SSC, I think she would have loved it. Or at least tolerated it.

When I was pregnant with #3, a carrier was at the top of my “must have” list. I was given an Infantino at our baby shower, and I love it. Yes, there are most likely benefits to using the more expensive carriers, and we may switch to one when this monster gets a little bigger (and most likely before this Summer’s hiking trips), but for now the Infantino works just fine.

Holy Moly, I wish I’d gotten one of these with the second baby.

My house is somewhat clean, my toddlers are fed and happy, and I had time to write this entire blog post (standing up of course, because there’s a baby on my back). Heck, I may even try to do a quick workout before he wakes up, you know, since I can’t sit down.


Homeschooling Pre-K: What Worked and What Didn’t

When we started the homeschooling journey, I spent weeks online looking at curricula, programs, theories, and ideas. I read books, I listened to podcasts, I pinterested like a mad woman. Come January first, I was READY.


Turns out, four year olds don’t need a lot of “stuff” to help them learn. I read about Waldorf, Charlotte Mason, and Montessori. I borrowed ideas from each of them, ideas that went over really well. But none of it “clicked.”

The truth is that kids will naturally seek out the knowledge they need to make sense of the world. My preschooler wanted to know about days of the week and “how many sleeps until…” So I bought a $1 calendar, drew little pictures of important upcoming events, and we mark off every day and count how many sleeps until the next event or holiday. She’s learned the basics of how weeks and months work, how to read calendars (left to right, top to bottom), the idea that weeks start over on Sunday, and that dance class happens every Wednesday.

Same with reading and writing. We were doing ok working on a daily lesson, but sometimes it was a fight. Other days, she’d want to write for an hour at a time, or work on different letters than were in that day’s “lesson.” I stepped back and let her take the lead. She didn’t learn anything new for a couple weeks, then decided she wanted to make Dad a Valentine’s Day card. In one afternoon, she learned all the letters and words she needed to write “I love you Daddy.” She just needed the motivation to learn the new material. Now she learns several new letters every week just by asking how to spell words that are relevant to her life.

The biggest challenge we faced was counting. She said she didn’t need to learn to count, she was going to invent her own numbers. As ambitious as that is, she’d still need to learn to function within society. Turns out, dance class was just the push she needed. You have to be able to keep up with the music, so she learned how to count. Yes, it’s only to eight, but that’s better than three, where she was stopping a few weeks ago!

Social studies and science at this level are easy. By gardening, they learn about plants, seasons, the water cycle, where compost goes, why chickens eat worms but humans don’t, and where our food comes from. By going with parents to run errands, they learn about their community and the people in it. They learn that everyone has a history, a family, and home (or lack thereof). They learn that we all have the same basic needs, but different ways of seeing those needs met. They learn about the value of money and budgeting, and that things have to be earned. By helping with household duties, they learn that food takes time and effort to make, and not waste it, and that messes aren’t fun to clean up, so they’re more careful with their play.

We do art every day in some form or another, whether it be beads, painting, glitter and glue, or coloring and cutting. They’ll ask for a coloring page related to what they’re interested in learning, or what colors to mix to make green or brown or purple.

As a family, we have a daily and weekly rhythm that revolves around the weather and my husband’s days off. It isn’t as structured as the Waldorf method requires, but hey, we aren’t a very structured family. We eat a big, healthy, homemade breakfast together every single day. Sometimes it’s the only meal we’re all home for, so we make it a priority. We do errands as a family on Monday. We go to dance class on Wednesday. We work in the yard on nice days. We stay in and drink hot cocoa on cold days. We jump in puddles on rainy days. They know what to expect, especially now that we have a family calendar to write it on, and having that sense of rythm helps the days and weeks run smoothly. I also keep a journal-style planner to kep track of to-do lists, outings, and work schedules, but the “fun” stuff all goes on the family calendar for everyone to look forward to.

As much as we enjoy the child-led learning, we do make a point of introducing new concepts every chance we get. Yes, kids learn at their own pace, but they also don’t know how much there is out there to learn about! As adults, we learn new things by reading, browsing online, or watching TV. We have the ability to look up new words we come across or research new skills we want to try. Kids who aren’t reading yet don’t really have that freedom, so it’s still our job as parents to introduce new ideas to them, and expand their world as much as possible. You never know when something new is going to click. They’ll hear a new word, ask what it means, and it’ll spark a whole new area of interest that they want to learn about. Sometimes new concepts don’t take flight the way we’d hoped, so we shelf it for a few days or weeks then try again. Often there is some piece of the puzzle missing that they need in order to be ready to learn the next thing. The idea is to keep trying, and make the home a place where learning is a lifestyle.

Learn along with them.

Let them see you in love with learning.

Try new things together.

Don’t rush the process, just present as many opportunities as you can, and trust them to take away just what they need from it!


6 Reasons Homeschooling Works For Us

I’d like to start by saying that homeschooling isn’t for everyone. Obviously. It also isn’t just for certain religious beliefs, incomes, or other commonly stereotyped demographics. It’s for families who want something other than what is offered in their community.

In our state, the public schools are BAD. National headline, bottom-five-in-the-nation bad. They’re underfunded in general, and organized by districts according to area of town, so only those in the “better” areas even have a fighting chance. The rest are being closed and consolidated more and more every year with no end in sight.

We want better for our family, but with three kids, private school just isn’t in the budget. Nor is a really expensive house in the better district.

So we’ve jumped head first into homeschooling. The oldest is only four, so it’s just pre-k at the moment, but the more we talk about it, the more we like it as a long-term solution. Here’s why:

  • Scheduling: With having one parent staying home and the other working a very unconventional schedule, we don’t adhere to the standard family rhythm. If we were to put the kids in regular school, they’d never get to see Daddy, and I would be responsible for almost all of the running around, getting them to and from school. we aren’t able to travel on weekends and “normal” holidays because of his work, so we’d literally never get to go anywhere. Boring!
  • Seasonal learning: We spend all Spring outside: fishing, gardening, hiking, and enjoying every second of Mother Nature waking up. Asking kids to spend this time sitting indoors seems like such a waste. What are they going to learn at a desk that can’t be taught outside in nature? We only do indoor learning during the cold of Winter and when it’s dangerously hot in Summer. Kids need to understand nature’s life cycles more than they need to learn to sit still.
  • Food: Ya’ll, this is huge. It’s my biggest reason for keeping my kids under my own watch 99% of their lives. We put a lot of effort into making sure our kids are fed healthy diets free of yucky stuff, and if we sent them to school I’d have to be that mom that comes to snack time every day and sits at every party making sure no one feeds my kids junk. The collective snack time thing they do (where everyone takes turns providing snacks for the whole class) just doesn’t work for us. Everything has to be nut free; but high fructose corn syrup, artificial dyes, and GMOs are just fine? Nope, not happening.
  • Germs: Yes, we are very healthy. Yes, we have strong immune systems. But kids will be kids. They will forget to wash their hands, they will share crayons, and they will get each other sick. I’m not paranoid by any means, we go out in public all the time during cold and flu season, but a room full of sneezing, coughing kids is a cesspool of sick just waiting to come home with us. No thanks.
  • Individualized Learning: Our oldest kid was born at the beginning of September; she missed the birthday cutoff to start pre-k by a week, so she had to wait a year. Honestly, she wasn’t ready in the fall anyway. She didn’t start showing an interest in formal learning until the middle of December, and that’s when we started teaching her to read and write. Within a couple months we expanded into social studies and science, and we do art every single day. If we waited until she was “old enough” to put her in school, she’d be missing out on all of that! As they get older and develop their own interests, we want them to be able to explore those interests to their fullest, and include this as part of their educational experience. Imagine how many more adults would actually enjoy learning if it had been a lifelong adventure rather than something they were forced to do!
  • Lightbulb Moments: This one is purely selfish. I love being there when they have their “ah ha” moments! When they master a new skill and they light up and their world seems to expand infinitely; these are the moments I would hate to miss out on.

At the end of the day, learning is something that comes naturally to humans. We are curious. We love the feeling of mastering a new concept, of accomplishing something. Being thrown into public school where this natural curiosity is tamed, where they’re taught the same thing as everyone else, just doesn’t feel natural. The thought of my kid being labeled as “ahead” or “behind” makes me shudder. They all learn differently, and giving them each the opportunity to learn at their own pace seems so much more peaceful!



motherhood, Power of Positivity

Minimalism and The Law of Attraction: Less Really Is More

We’ve all heard of the Law of Attraction, yes? If not, go do a Pinterest search. Watch the movie The Secret. Google it. This shit really is mind-blowing. My sister (whom I’ve mentioned is my go-to sounding board) introduced me to this idea. I was like, uh, yeah, sounds like some televangelist schpeal. But now she’s living in her dream home and takes several tropical vacations every year. Coincidence? Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, I started following a few positivity Pinterest boards, Facebook pages, and Instas, and before I knew it, I was finding my daily feeds full of inspiring pictures and quotes. It was great. Then I unfollowed a bunch of negative accounts (including some friends and family), and I got even happier. Turns out, eliminating all the things that give you even that momentary “ugh” makes a big difference in your outlook on life!

So, what if I do the same thing in my home? When I was pregnant with baby #3, I nested BIG TIME. I went on a tossing spree. Anything we don’t need is wither sold, donated, or trashed. No corner of the house was exempt from my hormones. And it felt Great.

The biggest accomplishment was getting rid of THIRTEEN boxes of…well…crap from my sewing room, as well as a queen-sized quilting frame. I’d been collecting freebies from people for years, whether it was stuff I needed or not. Y’all, this isn’t a big room, the fact that there was even thirteen boxes in there was amazing. I’d felt so overwhelmed by this room that it hurt my creativity in a really big way. I sold two machines that I no longer needed, donated the quilt frame to a local sewing museum, and ended up with a nice little chunk of change, but not nearly enough to buy my dream sewing machine. I was about $2500 short to be exact! Then my local sewing shop happened to have one on sale that had been a service loaner…and it was within my budget. I also scored a new table and a gorgeous dresser from the side of the road, so that room is now completely furnished with things that are useful and good quality. All it took was clearing out all the things that gave me that “ugh” moment, so I could start attracting the things that I need to make me happy and productive!

Turns out the secret to success is the feeling of having your desires already manifested. If you have a house full of things that you don’t love, or that carry bad memories, or are just plain junk, you spend your days having so many “ugh” moments that it’s really hard to stay in that positive mindset of attracting the things you do want. So, what do you do about it? Get rid of it. Anything that you don’t need or love, get rid of it. Toss, donate, sell. That’s my cleaning mantra. Keep it up until you can look around and not say “ugh” at what you see.

Cleaning my house has never been so easy or rewarding. It’s far from being truly “minimal.” In fact, it’s laughably far from it. In fact, it’s borderline crazy old woman aesthetic, with bright colors, gallery walls everywhere, enough quilted and crocheted blankets to keep a small country warm, and soooo many crafts that I’ve made with the kids. But I LOVE every inch of it. I look around and see my version of happy everywhere, there isn’t an “ugh” moment when I clean, because I’m taking care of a home and its contents that make me truly happy. And you know what? Things keep getting better. I feel more creative, our finances are in a better place, the kids are happier, and let’s not forget, I spend a lot less time cleaning every day. Win, win, win, win!

So, what can you do to get rid of the “ugh?”