Birthdays Call To Be Grateful

Another year, another day to feel incredibly blessed and grateful. It can be so easy to see the negatives, to see that things don’t go as ‘planned,’ as I’d like, as I wish they could be. But the storm doesn’t come in vain. It comes to teach lessons we may not see right away – in due time instead. It comes so that I may practice patience and love.

Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

And can I just add, thank you, your  patience with my being absent from this amazing community – for what feels like forever, is appreciated. Thank you!

A quick run down, my son that is in the spectrum / autism is growing up and while I am incredibly blessed to see his growth, it also comes with it’s challenges. My 5 year old daughter was recently diagnosed with Dyslexia, something that didn’t come as a shock, as I had already suspected she had it. If you have someone in your life with Dyslexia, I’d love to know more on it? Please share! And as for myself – well this mama is pushing through! Because He gives us grace to take on what would otherwise break us.

My final thoughts for today: Happy Birthday to this girl! To the one who continues to face challenges but refuses to let them define her, who’s carried SIX little ones when the professionals told her she couldn’t and to the one who refuses to give up!

YOU are AMAZING!

 

brooke lark

Happy Tuesday!

A-

Follow me on Instagram @simple_naildesigns and my YouTube channel – subscribe for easy nail art tutorials!

NORDSTROM.com

Picture By: Brooke Lark on Unsplash

‘I Look To You’

This morning while trying to get somethings done for my social media accounts, I decided to put on some background music. And I decided on this song, ‘I look to you,’ by the late Whitney Houston. I don’t normally work while listening to music, it’s really distracting and I get nothing done. My work area needs to be quiet and in order. But the calling was there, for me to go back to this song, and it lifted me.

I’ve been connecting with others with Chiari and although I’m grateful, it also tends to try to pull me down. On one hand I’m happy there others experiencing what I’m going through, but on the other, it’s incredibly sad to know there are others trying to get through their day with chronic pain.

Shop AMAZON

I get asked a few questions when someone realizes my diagnosis, and one that always sticks out is, ‘how do you do it?’ I understand because it’s almost dumbfounding to see this mother of six living with chronic pain. And there is no one answer, there is no perfect answer, actually there is no answer other than Him. He gets me out of bed when my body isn’t able to, He reminds me I am loved when I feel I’m a failure, He helps me take the steps when I’m in too much pain to walk, He holds my head when I feel it’s going to explode in pain, He helps me care for my children when I feel too ill, He reminds me to take my medication because He knows how much I dislike them, it’s Him, that’s how I do it – daily.

If you’ve never heard this song – or haven’t heard it in a while, I invite you to listen. It’s an amazing song, full of hope, because what you’re going through today you will get through by looking up to Him.

My favorite verse in the song, ‘After all my strength is gone, In you I can be strong.’ 

I Look to You
As I lay me down
Heaven hear me now
I’m lost without a cause
After giving it my all
Winter storms have come
And darkened my sun
After all that I’ve been through
Who on earth can I turn to
I look to you
I look to you
After all my strength is gone
In you I can be strong
I look to you
I look to you
Yeah
And when melodies are gone
In you I hear a song
I look to you
After losing my breath
There’s no more fighting left
Sinking to rise no more
Searching for that open door
And every road that I’ve taken
Led to my regret
And I don’t know if I’m gonna make it
Nothing to do but lift my head
I look to you
I look to you
Yeah
And when all my strength is gone
In you I can be strong
I look to you
I look to you
Oh yeah
And when melodies are gone
In you

A-

Follow me on social media Instagram @simple_naildesigns and  my YouTube channel – subscribe for easy nail art tutorials.

Shop the best fall arrivals at NORDSTROM.

When You Lack Motivation

I came across this picture and it gave me a great perspective on how big things have come from the modest of places – like a garage. How amazing is this picture?! What more motivation does one need?! I’ll be honest, I stared at it for quite some time.

Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

 

IMG_4430

If there’s one thing you and I have in common is that there’s always something that is holding us back. We want to do something, great or small, but we create excuses that keep us from getting it done.

What do you want to do?

Where do you want to go?

How will you get there?

… What’s holding you back?

What’s holding me back? …. It’s either my illness, my family or some other excuse that I allow to convince me, that now is not the time.

I was once in a place where I felt stuck, frozen and hesitant about taking the next step.

I was ‘thinking’ about creating a YouTube channel, if you are too, I’d say, ‘just go for it.’

Or ‘thinking’ about creating a blog, if you are too, I’d say, ‘just go for it.’

Or ‘thinking’ about creating an online store, if you are too, I’d say, ‘just go for it.’

Or say an Instagram account, if that’s you, I’d say, ‘just go for it.’

Because the growth will probably be slow and the learning will take some time, but all that matters is that you’re doing what you’re passionate about – continue to grow, continue to learn, and let’s be honest eventually the money will come.

Lastly, if you’re living with chronic pain like I am, be patient. Our bodies are not what they were before our diagnosis, your body will guide you, get things done when you can – or pain levels allow, prioritize things, create a schedule for yourself – even if it’s one task a day. You’ll see that slowly but surely things will come together and things will get done.

Do you struggle with staying motivated? What keeps you moving?

A-

Follow me on Instagram @simple_naildesigns and  visit my YouTube channel – subscribe for easy nail art tutorials.

Shop the sweetest new tops at NORDSTROM.

Chiari Sister, I See You

Chiari Sister, I See You

As a stay at home mom, I frequently think about other moms that are in my position. It’s no secret that the stay at home parent doesn’t get enough credit. The day to day seems lost in translation to many, except the one living it. And often we need the reassurance, because as mothers – humans, we want to be seen and loved.

 Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

Whether you have Chiari Malformation + Syringomyelia or any other illness that physically impairs you from feeling your best, know that you are doing your very best. I often compare myself to the wrong people, to those that don’t have physical pain and not needing to be medicated for pain relief.

adam-jang-260876-unsplash.jpg

As for the stay at home parent living with chronic pain though, the day to day is different and is a tiny bit more challenging. And for me, the physical pain can cause me to have self-doubt, so today, to my chronic pain brothers and sisters, I want you to know, I hear you and see you.

I want to reassure you that you are enough.

Just in case you haven’t heard it today, you did good!

You did more cleaning than your body could handle. It’s OK, not to do more, your body will thank you later.

Yes, it’s OK, the rest can wait.

You folded the laundry that had been sitting in the basket for over a week – no judgment, you did it!

You cooked a meal with love, and that’s all your family could ask for.

You’re pushing through the pain with every step you take – you’re a warrior!

Don’t be hard on yourself, you’re 1 in 1,000 uniquely designed people and not everyone will understand – and that’s OK!

Push through, shower; push through, brush your hair; push through, push through, push through.

Take a break, a much needed break.

Know that your illness doesn’t define you – you are beautiful, believe it.

You are so loved, and you are just as beautiful on the inside as you are on the outside.

You are not alone.

Chiari sister – I see you.

A-

Shop Coats for Now and Later at NORDSTROM.

Netflix: Tidying Up With Marie Kondo

This morning GMA (Good Morning America) covered a story on a Netflix Original that has just begun! If you already know, or don’t, Marie Kondo is a Japanese best selling author. She is known for her expert advice on all things organization and I just so happen to have a deep love for all things organized. And this Netflix Original Series is based on the ‘KonMari’ method which is from her best-selling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I also had written the post titled, The KonMari Method + Clutter Free Home, so if you haven’t read it, please do!

 Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

The plot behind this newly original, Marie Kondo lends a helping hand to people in need of decluttering their homes.

In the interview linked below with Marie Kondo, one of the things that struck a cord with me is when she is asked, what is wrong with American’s, why do we have so much stuff, to which she responds, that the homes are huge. Which only got me thinking about the homes I’ve visited – those smaller spaces and large, and how every inch of the home is covered in stuff! Have you been there?! Perhaps it’s because I live with chronic pain, but living in a space that is begging to be cleared is not something that is appealing to me. Either way, my hope is that this inspires you to declutter your home to make it a more loving and inviting space for yourself and your loved ones.

https://www.goodmorningamerica.com/video/embed/60227303

I’m excited to watch and see how she transforms lives, one home at a time.

A-

Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

The Best Child Friendly Nativity Set

With little ones at home, I have to be very careful of the things I bring in the home and leave within reach. So, there’s a no-glass rule we go by because sooner or later, little fingers are bound to get to it.

Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

That’s where the ‘Little People Nativity Set’ – this is the updated set, comes in. I purchased ours years ago, perhaps in 2009, and it’s yet to let me down! My kids play with it, turn on the little angel to hear a beautiful melody and the best thing of all, it’s all plastic! I have the ‘Nativity Set’ and The Three Wise Men.’ I know the complete set is made up of three – it contains more animals.

Our family tradition includes getting the nativity set up. However, for picture purposes I photographed baby Jesus, but I will put him away and bring him out, as the children would say, for his birthday – Christmas morning. I’ve included a before and after because it’s exactly what happens once little fingers get a hold of this very cute set.

A-

Find Giftworthy Accessories for Everyone on Your List at NORDSTROM.

List of Great Children’s Books to Own

I grew up getting lost in books and stories – I loved books! But, I’ll be honest, I still can’t seem to get used to reading a book on Kindle, say on the iPad or phone, much less on audio. I don’t know why, but I simply just love the feel of the book, turning the pages and can I say, the smell of them! I’ve turned to Amazon for quick delivery on many of these titles as the children have received many of these titles during Christmas time and Three Kings Day. We will either gift them a book as stocking stuffers or as a present if the book is too large to fit in their stocking. I’ll even purchase some of these as gifts for the children’s book exchange at their schools!

Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial

These are a few of the titles that I’ve gathered over time for my children, they range in ages from 22 months to 11 years old. They have a book shelf that houses these great titles.

I hope this list will help you build or add to your own children’s book collection!

Related image

Children’s Reading Books

For Babies or Preschoolers

Love You Forever by Robert Munsch – I’ll include this one here for ‘babies’ because it’s one I read to my 11 year old when she was teeny-tiny, it’s a must read to your babies, it’ll get you shedding a tear, or two!

Eric Carle Books – titles such as The Very Hungry CaterpillarBrown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? and Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?

Dr. Seuss Books – titles such as Green Eggs and Ham, Fox In Socks, ABC, Hop On Pop and I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today!Among many other great titles!

Dr. Seuss Nusery, Dr. Seuss’s Horton Hears A Who? Can You? – With Horton as a puppet!

Corduroy by Don Freeman

Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle

Mrs. Wishy-Washy’s Farm by Joy Cowley

Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae

Owl Babies by Martin Waddell

Stellaluna by Janell Cannon

Happy Birthday Moon by Frank Asch

Clifford books, titles such as Clifford’s Good Deeds

Kevin Henkes books, titles such as A Parade Of Elephants

Raffi Songs to Read books, titles such as Down By The Bay

Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom by Bill Martin Jr.

Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney

Pat-A-Cake! Curious George – Cute puppet book!

Tiger Tales books, Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Llama, Llama books, titles such as Llama, Llama, Time To Share

Hey, Diddle, Diddle

Old MacDonald Had A Farm 

I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak

‘Look and Find’ Disney books, titles such as The Wild and from the Disney movie, Cars – These ‘look and find’ books are so fun!

Sandra Boynton books, titles such as The Going To Bed Book and Eek! Halloween!Cute Halloween book for kids.

Board Book, titles such as First 100 Animals and Numbers Colors Shapes

Little America by Helen Foster James – Easy to understand, facts on America for little ones.

For Kids Learning to Read

I Like Me! by Nancy Carlson – Great book for little ones about loving yourself, as you are!

Rob Scotton books, titles such as Splat The Cat and Scaredy-Cat, Splat!

Johnny Appleseed by Jodie Shepherd

Judith Viorst books, titles such as Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

The Lunch Box Surprise by Grace Maccarone

Syd Hoff books, includes titles such as Danny and The Dinosaur and Sammy The Seal – Amazing books!

Margaret Wise Brown books, titles such as The Runaway Bunny and Goodnight Moon – Phenomenal books!

Dinosaurs, Dinosaurs by Byron Barton – Great for little ones who are growing a love for Dinosaurs!

Laura Numeroff books, titles such as If You Give A Mouse A Cookie and If You Give A Dog A Donut

Planets by Ellen Hasbrouck – Great book on the solar system.

Firebird by Misty Copeland – Misty is a real life ballerina, you don’t know who she is?! You must read her book here, it’s amazing!

‘Who Was’ books and ‘What Was’ books, titles such as Who Was King Tut? and What Was The Gold Rush?– Easy to understand for kids!

‘Smart About’ books, titles such as Smart About The Presidents by Jon Buller – Super fun facts on our presidents, like the ‘Teddy Bear’ being named after Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt!

Dav Pilkey books, titles such as Dog Man Lord of The Fleas and Dog Man and Cat Kid – From the creator of Captain Underpantsmy 7 and 8 year old boys love these books!

The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf

Turkey Trouble by Wendi Silvano – Great Thanksgiving book!

Biscuit Goes to School! by Alyssa Satin Capucilli – A story of a pet and his love for his boy owner!

A Girl Named Helen Keller by Margo Lundell

Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish

‘Junie B’ Barbara Park books, titles such as  Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch and Junie B. Jones and Her Big Fat Mouth 

For Readers / Chapter Books

Wonder by R.J. Palacio – Absolutely amazing book, my 11 year old, loved it!

A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle

I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai

Jerry Spinelly books, titles such as Third Grade Angels, Maniac Magee and Wringer 

Judy Blume books, titles such as Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Megan McDonald books, titles such as Judy Moody Gets Famous!

E.B. White books, titles such as Charlotte’s Web

Roald Dahl books, titles such as James and the Giant Peach

The Chocolate Fudge Mystery by Cam Jansen

Kate DiCamillo books, titles such as Because of Winn-Dixie, The Tale of Desperaux and The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt

The Homework Machine by Dan Gutman

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling – My oldest recently began her fascination with Harry Potter and just began this first book.

For Both Babies and Older Children

Religious Books

‘Stories from the Bible’ books, titles such as Joseph’s Coat of Many Colors and David and Goliath 

Thank You, God, For Loving Me by Max Lucado

God’s Wonderful Plan – This book is amazing and it’s a pop-up book!

Thank You Prayer 

My Little Book of Prayers – This book includes the traditional prayers, from the Our Father to Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, among others!

Daniel in the Lions’ Den by Flying Frog Publishing – Includes great pull-tabs, flaps and pop-ups!

Jesus Wants All Of Me Kids Devotional

The Beginners Bible 

Break Through! Bible

Christmas Books

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg – A phenomenal one to own!

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Clubhouse Christmas – A favorite of my 22 month old, as she loves all things Mickey Mouse.

The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore

Frosty the Snowman 

The Story of Christmas by Patricia A. Pingry

Spanish / Spanglish Books

Mario Montenegro books, includes Spanish titles such as, Gonzalo El Cocodrilo, Historia De Dos Sapos and El Caballito De Palo

Monica Brown books, titles such as Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match – We love this book and the story throughout is both in Spanish and English. I’m still in need of other Monica Brown titles, because they’re just that amazing!

Hope my attempt to categorize the books has helped. And remember, books are always a great gift, no matter the time of year!

A-

Find limited-edition palettes, minis and more beauty gifts to give at NORDSTROM.

Mom Life With Chiari is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. I will not recommend or buy anything that I do not already own and love or would not use for myself and my family. I make a small commission when you make a purchase on any link my website provides at NO additional cost to you. Thank you in advance for supporting companies that support me!