Need Help Homeschooling?

Need a little help with homeschooling?

Or are you on the other end of the spectrum, with years of homeschooling experience under your belt, and a routine that works for your family?

No matter where you find yourself, a little inspiration never hurts.

My friends at Oak Meadow have just released the spring edition of their free online journal. This edition asks the question Dear Earth, How Can We Help?

You can read the full issue here and check out my tips for how to teach a basic appreciation for the planet (even if science isn’t your best subject) here.

What do you want in 2020?

What do you want in 2020?

folded days.jpg

I’m not a believer in New Year’s Resolutions, as these all too often result in nothing. However, I love the chance to say goodbye to the old year and say hello to the new. For several years, I’ve said no to making a resolution while saying yes to making a list of goals instead. I try to keep these goals attainable and sane – I know me, and I know I’m not going to lose 50 pounds this year, let’s be real! Over the years, this New Year’s Goal List has helped me focus on what passions, hobbies, or interests I might want to explore. This list is not a punishment, and it isn’t a list of things I have to give up or “do better”.

What about you? Have you made your list of what you want to do, where you want to go, or how you want to spend your time in 2020?

Can You Hear Me Now?

Ever feel like you’re not being heard? Or perhaps not being listened to? If good communication is the glue that holds a relationship together, listening could be where it’s at to keep problems at bay.

Husband and wife team Steve and Becky Harling share their advice for “Becoming the Leader People Want to Follow” in their new book, Listen Well Lead Better. The Harlings share a very common story from early in their careers of how inferior listening ended a business relationship. This relationship, perhaps, could have lasted longer, or at least ended on less bitter terms, if good listening was there.

Listen Well

Listen Well Lead Better is geared towards Christians who are open to a faith-based approach to improving their leadership skills. If you’re a fan of Stephen Covey, you’ll probably like this book. The Harlings don’t hesitate to share their own stories of discomfort throughout their careers, and the stories shared are realistic. Current and aspiring leaders in various settings will benefit from this book’s honest approach to the problems that can crop up when managing people. Good questions are asked of leaders to help them examine their own behavior, instead of just looking at those around them.

DISCLOSURE: I’m a Bethany House Influencer! I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Make Your Own Luck in 2020

fireworks new year

Was 2019 a good year for you? If your year was full of happiness and success, there’s cause for celebration. On the other hand, if 2019 was full of disappointment or heartbreak, then the New Year is probably a welcomed fresh start.

Either way, did you know that you can make your own luck in 2020? Not by making a resolution you’re destined to break, but by making a choice that will set you up for success. Do you want to be happier and healthier, without spending any money? Try one of these things in the New Year to make your own luck:

Declutter in 2020

Decluttering has become a huge trend with good reason. A tidy home is easier to breathe in, sleep in, and think in. It’s more peaceful. Got clutter? You don’t have to tackle it all in one day. Get a bag and start rounding up your unwanted stuff and donate it to charity. You will enjoy having less to clean and keep up with. This means less stress and more time to do things you enjoy. Make your own luck by making your home more peaceful in 2020.

clean house

Consider Your Career Path

Unless you’re retired, you probably spend the majority of your waking hours at work. If you despise what you do, that can create a miserable existence. If you’re not happy with your current work circumstances, think about what you may be able to do to change this. Does your job offer tuition reimbursement? Can you advance at the company where you are, or is it time to explore outside opportunities? Think thoroughly about what you can do, and what you desire. Try to make your own luck before you decide that all hope is lost.


Take Small Steps for Fitness

Ever made a resolution to lose weight, only to give up on your goal by the time January arrived? Instead of striving for a total lifestyle overhaul, get where you want to be using small changes you know you can sustain. Swap out soda for flavored water, and switch out french fries for a baked potato. Lift weights during TV commercials, or go for a walk after dinner. Make your own luck for fitness in 2020.





Minutes Matter by K.R. Mele (Book Review)


Ever think about how you’re spending your time?

It’s easy for a day, a week, or even a year to slip away. We may wonder where the time went. Life can leave us feeling that there’s not enough time for all that we must do.

K.R. Mele takes a slightly different approach to time management. In Minutes Matter: Making Every Beat Count, he doesn’t ask us to plan for years, months, or even days. He urges us to examine how we’re using our minutes, those tiny pieces of time that can slip away so quickly we don’t even notice.


This might seem like a strange way to approach time management, but it makes sense in the chapterĀ  where he discusses the importance of exercise. K.R. doesn’t encourage us to exercise for three hours a week, or does he? He recommends 180 minutes of exercise per week. If you lead a sedentary lifestyle, three hours of exercise may seem unattainable, but 180 minutes per week seems like a much more accessible goal. Making your “minutes matter” can pay off in many areas of life.

K.R. discusses some statistics of how a typical person spends their lives. This can cause some major self-examination. How many hours, how many minutes, of our lives are being spent on things that are truly useless? How are your minutes, my minutes, being spent on valuable things? How can we make our minutes matter?

Minutes Matter is a book that will be valuable for anyone who wants to lead a life that truly matters. K.R. lays out some principles that are easy to understand, and his writing has a voice that is encouraging, non-judgmental, and one that understands the struggles of everyday living. This book is highly recommended for anyone who wants to be a good steward of their time.

FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher, Ambassador International, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed within this review are my own.