What I Learned While Mowing the Yard and more


What I Learned While Mowing the Yard

What I Learned While Mowing the Yard - 4 principles for reaching goals

A few weeks ago, I decided to surprise my husband when he came home from work.

No, no. It was nothing romantic and didn’t even involve his favorite meal.

What brings a smile to my man’s face and a “Wow, honey!” to his lips?

Our yard—freshly cut.

That’s right. I mowed the yard.

Now, I’m no stranger to mowing the yard. I grew up on a farm where our yard was three huge grassy areas. I have mowed my share of yards. I have logged my time on mowers—both riding and push.

But it’s been oh, several years now that I’ve done yard work. And it’s sort of an understatement to say that I’m out of shape.

These realities did nothing, however, to quell my zest for getting work done! For surprising my hubby! For feeling productive!

The first half hour of mowing the yard in the 90 degree heat was riddled with pain and misery. I clobbered my ankle as I was retrieving the mower from its storage place. I pushed and pulled and heaved the mower through the backyard grass. Sweat poured down my forehead and started to sting my eyes. The mower died once. Twice. Three times. Oh, my goodness, what is wrong with this machine?

And then the world almost started spinning as my arms, legs, and back were aching from the unfamiliar twists and turns.

I turned off the mower and walked as quickly as possible into the house, afraid that I may pass out before I got inside. My heart was pounding in my ears, I was breathless, and hot and sweaty. I collapsed on the bed with a giant cup of ice water.

And I lay there guzzling water, wiping my brow, and breathing deeply. I know I’ve been out there for like an hour, I thought.

Uh, no. It had been all of 20 minutes.

So, I lay there and wondered what to do.

Quit? Yea, I should quit. But I didn’t feel like giving up just yet.

OK. I can at least finish the back yard. And I’ll rest here until I believe I’m ready.

Hey. I’ve got all day.

And so, the rest of the mowing went like that. Several rest and water breaks. As I worked, I set small goals for myself: I’ll finish this little patch and then I’ll rest. I thought of my 75 year-old neighbor who mows and landscapes several times a week. No way, I’m letting that old man beat me! I’ve got a master’s degree! I’ve birthed three children! I’ve survived post-partum depression! I can mow this yard!

I worked little by little, taking it slowly and pushing through the obstacles. I got sore arms, tired legs, and nasty blisters on my fingers. The heat was brutal, and I was soaking wet. The mower would die and I would revive it. Or I’d let it rest and come back later.

I discovered that early on I hadn’t been using the self-propelled feature (no wonder I was struggling), but once I learned my tool, the work became easier.

Oh, I even lost my sunglasses. But that didn’t deter me, either. I found an old hat and carried on.

And guess what?

I finished the yard!

And it was beautiful and my husband was surprised and pleased.

As I was thinking on this day, I realized that my lawn mowing experience is no different than any other goal we set:

  1. Obstacles will stand in our way of finishing what we start. Sometimes, you may need to rest, recalibrate,  or recharge. With a new perspective and renewed energy, confront them head on.
  2. You only fail if you quit. As long as you’re moving forward, you’re making progress. Every little bit contributes to the larger goal. Keep going. Take as long as you need.
  3. The more you work at your goal, the more you’ll learn about the tools with which you are working and the better you’ll become at using them. You’ll learn how to compensate and improvise when something goes wrong, doesn’t turn out as you expect, or distracts you from the task at hand.
  4. If a 75-year-old man can do it, so can you! You’re probably not the first to tackle what you’re after and you probably won’t be the last. In a real sense, it’s not rocket science. Others have blazed the trail. Learn from them, use them for motivation, and follow in their footsteps.

I’m not sure when I’ll be mowing the yard again. But I do know that I can do it.

And I know that it’s a great motivator for accomplishing other goals, too.

Photo Credit: GmanViz via Compfight cc

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

What I Learned While Mowing the Yard is a post from: Mary Bernard

    

Words Are Fun Friday: Sun

words are fun friday sun sunflower

I love words!

That’s why I started a Words Are Fun Friday meme a few months back. Just something to celebrate our beautiful gift of language.

How many words, phrases, song lyrics, brand names, etc. can you think of that include the word, “Sun”? I think this word is appropriate for today because it’s so doggone hot here!

I’ll start. You add more to my list by leaving a comment.

Let’s go!

  1. Sunday
  2. sunshine
  3. suntan
  4. sunflower
  5. sundae
  6. sunlight
  7. sunscreen
  8. sun shade
  9. sunglasses
  10. sun spots

Your turn! Give me your best words and phrases containing the word, “Sun”!

 

 

 

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Words Are Fun Friday: Sun is a post from: Mary Bernard

    

Migraine Headaches? Maybe It’s Your Gall Bladder

migraine headaches | migraine headache relief

For much of my adult life, I’ve suffered with headaches.

I’ve had tension and stress headaches brought on by a variety of things, including changes in the weather, hormonal shifts, second-hand cigarette smoke, and obnoxious perfumes and potpourris.

Within the last few years, however, I have suffered from almost debilitating migraine headaches. My doctor and I have tried to trouble-shoot the headaches every which way. I stopped taking hormonal forms of birth control and watched if common food triggers might be a problem.

Nothing seemed to shed any light on my headache issues. They would come and go at will with no rhyme or reason.

I had just sort of resigned myself to being at the mercy of a migraine headache (when and if it decided to appear) and hoped I could get the Imitrex or Maxalt (prescription pain relievers) into my system as soon as possible after noticing that first pain.

But everything started to change for me earlier this year.

Pain, Pain, Go Away!

After feeling that I had been putting myself in last place for too, too long, I decided in January to invest in my health and well-being.

Our family began using essential oils and enjoyed immediate success in many areas of health and well-being.

I decided also to see a chiropractor and nutritionist. The headaches were still a pain (pun intended) and I was having issues with my under-functioning thyroid, lethargy, achy joints, and my weight.

At the first consultation, I told him about my headaches. My headaches are usually always above my right eye with pain going across the top of my head and down into my ear.

He immediately said, “Gall bladder. Headaches on the right side of the head are usually gall bladder-related.”

What? I thought.

Soon thereafter, he did muscle testing that recommended I avoid gluten.

So, for a couple of weeks now, I’ve been avoiding gluten and processed foods, taking supplements, and using oils. I’ve been feeling better and best of all—no headaches!

But this last week, I wheeled into the chiropractor’s office with a raging headache. I explained to him—once again—how the pain had settled behind my right eye and down into my ear. He immediately started addressing my gall bladder with adjustments and massage. At the end of my session, I felt much better.

Confession: I had been way off my gluten-free, non-processed diet for the week or so leading up to the headache. My chiropractor confirmed that the Chinese food and cheeseburger I had eaten last week were probably to blame for the gall bladder congestion. In addition to gluten, he added I need to avoid fatty fried and spicy foods, too.

I am not a medical doctor nor a licensed anything. But I am a woman who has suffered from migraine headaches. I can now look at my diet and notice a correlation between eating junk and having painful headaches. I’m in a learning process, for sure. That’s why I’m sharing this post today. If you’re looking for answers for your headaches, maybe this will help.

5 Tips For Migraine Headache Relief

If you, too, suffer from headaches—especially on the right side of your head—consider that it may be that your diet is aggravating and congesting your gall bladder. Try these natural interventions to see if your headaches become less frequent, less painful, or—hopefully—disappear altogether:

1. Avoid foods made with gluten. (You may also want to avoid other known foods that cause sensitivities, though I have not. These may include dairy, eggs, soy, alcohol, caffeine, etc.)

2. Drink 3-4 drops of lemon, orange, grapefruit, and/or peppermint essential oils in water or herbal tea daily. (I only use and recommend Young Living essential oils for ingestion. And only drink beverages with essential oils from a glass container. You can find my favorite glass water bottle here.)

3. Rub 2-3 drops Citrus Fresh and peppermint essential oils (layer the oils, using peppermint last) onto your gall bladder after a heavy meal and/or when you feel a headache coming on. Repeat on the bottoms of your feet.

4. Take a detox bath made with Epsom salts and your favorite essential oil. If you’re battling a headache, I’d probably recommend peppermint. If you need relaxation and sleep, use lavender or Peace & Calming. Here’s a great recipe for detox bath salts.

5. Try other supplements. Young Living offers many products that can help ease headaches and offer support for your gall bladder. I haven’t used all of these myself, simply because I’m trying to address my problems more on the prevention and nutrition angle. But I know they have helped many people with similar issues:

  • M-Grain™ – a blend of basil, marjoram, lavender, peppermint, Roman chamomile, and helichrysum essential oils
  • Aroma Siez™ – a relaxing blend of basil, marjoram, lavender, peppermint, and cypress essential oils
  • Deep Relief - specially formulated with peppermint, wintergreen, copal, and palo santo essential oils
  • PanAway – a blend of wintergreen, helichrysum, clove, and peppermint essential oils
  • GLF™ – a blend of powerful oils including helichrysum, spearmint, and celery

For more answers to your questions about using essential oils for headache relief and/or gall bladder issues, check out Oil-Testimonials.com. And many of the oils mentioned above are included in the Premium Starter Kit from Young Living. Find out more here.

If you, too, are a headache sufferer, I do pray you find relief. Leave me a comment and let me know how you deal with migraine headaches.

Photo Credit: mislav-m via Compfight cc

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Migraine Headaches? Maybe It’s Your Gall Bladder is a post from: Mary Bernard

    

Chosen By God

chosen by God | Mary Bernard | WritingMomof3.com

“Chosen By God” Photo Credit: ?ethan via Compfight cc

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

Chosen By God is a post from: Mary Bernard

    

We Need Reminders of God’s Faithfulness

Reminders of God's Faithfulness | Ebenezer

Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shenand called its name Ebenezer; for he said, “Till now the Lord has helped us.” —1 Samuel 7:12

Lately, I’ve felt far from God. Just disconnected and removed. I can’t pinpoint an actual event that sparked it, but I will say in the “departments” of money, budget, job growth/security, church life, and family members, etc., I haven’t known what God’s been up to for many years.

In 2010, our church closed, which was devastating to us. To this day, we mourn its loss. In 2012, my mother died—a painful absence which I feel every single day. I hate thinking I’ll be having to do life without her for 40ish more years.

And money? Sigh. We have had our challenges with too little income and too much outgo. We have struggled to keep the bills paid and everything else running smoothly. I have likened it to our wanderings in the wilderness. We didn’t like it but we knew God’s purposes had our good as their end result. We are continually comforted by the Heidelberg Catechism Question & Answer #1 (emphasis mine):

What is thy only comfort in life and death?

That I with body and soul, both in life and death, am not my own, but belong unto my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ; who, with his precious blood, has fully satisfied for all my sins, and delivered me from all the power of the devil; and so preserves me that without the will of my heavenly Father, not a hair can fall from my head; yea, that all things must be subservient to my salvation, and therefore, by his Holy Spirit, He also assures me of eternal life, and makes me sincerely willing and ready, henceforth, to live unto him.

And then last summer, Chris quit his job to take another job, which was presented as a terrific opportunity AND a substantial salary increase. Oh, we were thrilled! I created our new monthly budget with the new income penciled in weeks before Chris’ last day.

Too bad the job wasn’t real. That’s right. He received a forged offer letter (you can read the whole story here). So, we were without insurance and income for several months.

Cue the bitterness and anger at God. The disbelief, the numbness. Sometimes, of course, my faith was buoyed because when you find yourself at your most dependent and vulnerable, all you can do is rely on God.

But I had those whiny-tail moments for sure. And I think I get even more whiny when I look back on the whole experience. Add in the other trials and losses of the last few years, and I start to border on rage.

Instead of remembering God’s grace during that time, I’m usually focused on what we should/should not have done and wondering how God could have allowed that to happen.

So when a woman in my Bible study group asked us to think of a time when God surprised us with provision and/or allowing us to glimpse his love for us in a very concrete way, at first I was like, “Huh? God is way far away from me. God cares about the big stuff—the tsunamis, cancer, and world peace. He doesn’t care about me and my budget, my husband’s job, or how we’re going to pay for orthodontics.”

And then it HIT me—just like that. The Holy Spirit’s nudge: The $1000 check???? he said.

And so I told this story to my Bible study group.

One Saturday, I was making our budget for the week. We were trying to decide which bills were most important, when they were due, and how much the total would be. I scribbled on a piece of paper, “We need $1017 this week.” And my mind starting turning over. How do we make $1000 in a week?

About that time, my husband called out, “Hey! I’m going to the mailbox.”

In a few minutes, he returned and handed me an envelope with a return address we didn’t immediately recognize. “We got a card, it looks like. Wonder who it’s from?”

We opened it to find a sweet card and a check for $1000 from my aunt and cousins.

I started shaking a little bit and crying too. It took my breath away to see God’s meeting our specific need so tangibly and so much to the point.

“Honey. I just wrote on a piece of paper that we needed $1017 for bills this week,” I told my husband, not really believing it myself.

We both cried and called the kids to tell them God’s good gift.

I realized after I shared that story how important Ebenezers are in our life. We need reminders. Why? Because we forget. Practicing our faith: the weekly rituals of worship and daily remembrances of God’s goodness are not just helpful to our spiritual growth. They are integral to our health as Christians.

Photo Credit: catb - via Compfight cc

Disclosure: I am not a medical doctor. Any statements made on this blog about essential oil use are not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any condition. My statements about essential oils are my opinion and are based upon my own experiences and research.

I occasionally feature affiliate links in my blog posts. Should you follow my link and make a purchase or join a membership website, I will be compensated for my referral.

We Need Reminders of God’s Faithfulness is a post from: Mary Bernard

    

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