Welcome to my blog!

I hope you will be enlightened and encouraged when you come to my page. It is my goal to always keep a good attitude and have it be contagious. Of course, life isn't always a bowl of cherries but hey, we can try to keep it sweet!

I am determined!

"I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances."
- Martha Washington

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Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Integrity is a concept of consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expectations and outcomes.

In western ethics, integrity is regarded as the quality of having an intuitive sense of honesty and truthfulness in regard to the motivations for one's actions.

[citation needed] Integrity can be regarded as the opposite of hypocrisy,[1] in that it regards internal consistency as a virtue, and suggests that parties holding apparently conflicting values should account for the discrepancy or alter their beliefs.

The word "integrity" stems from the Latin adjective integer (whole, complete).[2] In this context, integrity is the inner sense of "wholeness" deriving from qualities such as honesty and consistency of character.

As such, one may judge that others "have integrity" to the extent that one judges whether they behave according to the values, beliefs and principles they claim to hold.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

100 Ways to Connect with your Teens

Having a 20 year old son, an 18 year old son a 16 year old daughter and a 10 year old daughter has brought LOTS of challenges to our family.  Nothing can really prepare you for raising teenagers although, I have found some tips that have helped my husband and myself get through the crazy years.  One more thing that has really helped us is not on this list but I can honestly say it has been one of the best decisions we ever made for our family.  Working from home and loving what I do has changed all of our lives in a huge way.  I know not everyone has the option to work at home but I do and I'm blessed to have a great business that my family loves to be a part of. :D

By: Debra Hapenny Ciavola, Ph.D.

1. View adolescence as an adventure.
2. Respect their privacy.
3. Create family times around activities they enjoy.
4. Keep the delicate balance between holding on and letting go.
5. Understand the nature of the adolescent beast.
6. Take advantage of an unexpected connection.
7. Bite your tongue.
8. Don’t take their chaotic behavior or mood swings personally.
9. Help them discover their spirituality.
10.Catch them doing something right and praise them.
11. Influence your teens’ decision making, but don’t say “I forbid.”
12. Give privileges with age and responsibility.
13. Be their mentor and ally.
14. Guide them, not manage them.
15. Be clear about expectations and the consequences for not meeting those expectations.
16. Be your teen’s advocate.
17. Show true interest in their activities.
18. Expect miracles.
19. Be their parent. Teens do want rules, limits, and questions from you.
20. If your can’t police, monitor or enforce a rule, don’t have it.
21. Watch the little rules that poison relationships.
22. Spend time alone with your teen.
23. Ask open ended question, such as “What are you learning in your history class?”
24. Encourage them to talk it out.
25. Actively supervise your teen’s exposure to media violence.
26. Acknowledge your teen’s fears, even if you do not agree with them.
27. Control your own behavior.
28. Talk about gangs and cliques.
29. Allow them safe and healthy outlets for their energy.
30. Use “I” statements rather than “You”.
31. Enforce the important stuff, not the little stuff.
32. Seek to understand what your teen is really saying rather than reacting.
33. Share something personal that relates to your years as a teen.
34. Avoid giving unwanted advice.
35. Discuss personal matters on sex and fears.
36. Give your teen the impression that you trust them to do what is right.
37. Listen patiently to your teen’s reasons for wanting to do something.
38. Connect with your teen. Reflect on your adolescence.
39. Avoid lecturing.
40. Be someone they can believe in.
41. Make your home a place where teens want to hang out.
42. Talk less about the media and more about real heroes in our country.
43. Make a list of ten things you like about your teen and tell them.
44. Teach them how to be compassionate, empathetic, and fair.
45. Show compassion to other teenagers.
46. Keep your face relaxed when they are telling you something you don’t want to hear.
47. Talk about drinking and its consequences. Make your expectations known.
48. Help them establish their own autonomy while maintaining a loving relationship with you.
49. Support your teen’s interests and encourage in their accomplishments.
50. Have regular family meetings in which the whole family talks things over and makes decisions together.
51. Ask what worries them most about their future.
52. Use natural and logical consequences, so discipline makes sense.
53. When they come home from an event ask, “How did you show good character?”
54. Teach respect for life in all forms.
55. Ask if they would like to go out to eat, run an errand, or go shopping with you.
56. Show up to watch them in their activities. Clap loudly.
57. Talk to their friends, learn their names, and let them confide in you.
58. Work together in community activities.
59. Learn more about their world.
60. Believe they can make a difference and be a success.
61. Admit when you are wrong. Be able to say, “I’m sorry.”
62. Hug them often.
63. Say, “I love you. I’m proud of you.”
64. Show your teen respect.
65. Eat dinner together four to five days a week.
66. Never berate or belittle teens in front of their friends or peers.
67. Ask their opinions.
68. Give them room to breath to balance independence with dependence.
69. Set standards in clothing while still allowing them to express themselves.
70. Talk to your teen when there is not a problem.
71. Listen carefully to what is being said as well as what is not.
72. Have daily conversations.
73. Share your concerns rather than being the undercover cop.
74. Keep the discussions with your teen confidential unless they are involved with something dangerous.
75. Follow through on promises.
76. Allow your teen to take responsibility when you see them handling it well.
77. Forgive your teen when they make a mistake.
78. Negotiate new challenges.
79. Give your teen increasing autonomy (even if it kills you).
80. Accept all of your teen’s feelings as long as they are respectfully conveyed.
81. Schedule times to talk about unappealing topics. Do not catch on the fly.
82. Focus on what your teen did right before offering constructive criticism.
83. Make more statements rather than asking questions.
84. Talk to your teenager rather than at them.
85. Don’t over-react.
86. Accept they will have moody behavior and teach them how to deal with it.
87. Allow them to make decisions about their own lives whenever possible.
88. Remember you are in the process of “people-making.”
89. Express words of appreciation.
90. Listen with your heart.
91. Help them develop a sense of humor by telling funny stories of your day.
92. Enforce mutually acceptable behavior standards.
93. Listen to the whole story before you react.
94. Use natural and logical consequences when a boundary is broken.
95. Cook together or teach them how to cook.
96. Wait up until they come home.
97. Talk in the dark after the house is quiet and they are tired and relaxed.
98. Find out if they want you to fix it or just listen before you give advice.
99. Discover a shared passion together.
100 .Remember, children become who you predict them to be.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Why Women Cry

A little boy asked his mother, 'Why are you crying?' 'Because I'm a woman,' she told him.

'I don't understand,' he said. His Mom just hugged him and said, 'And you never will.'

Later the little boy asked his father, 'Why does mother seem to cry for no reason?'

'All women cry for no reason,' was all his dad could say.

The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry.

Finally he put in a call to God. When God got on the phone, he asked, 'God, why do women cry so easily?'

God said:

'When I made the woman she had to be special.

I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world,

yet gentle enough to give comfort

I gave her an inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times comes from her children.

I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going when everyone else gives up, and take care of her family through sickness and fatigue with out complaining.

I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances, even when her child has hurt her very badly.

I gave her strength to carry her husband through his faults and fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart.

I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife, but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly.

And finally, I gave her a tear to shed. This is hers exclusively to use whenever it is needed.'

'You see my son,' said God, 'the beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair.

The beauty of a woman must be seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart - the place where love resides.'

Life Is Like A Cup of Coffee - Inspirational Video Movie

Inspirational Quotes

Friday, July 2, 2010

Personal and Professional Development

Wow!  June literally came and went right before my eyes.  June was a very busy but productive month for me and my business.  That's the way I like it!!

As I sit here today, July 2nd, thinking about the last couple of months I can honestly say I have an awesome life.  My business is growing at a good pace that I'm really happy with and my family is doing so well.  I have learned that even with the curve balls that life throws at me,  I can still be happy.  Of course, there will always be adversities and interruptions but I've been doing this (work, parenting, wife) long enough to NOT let them throw me off and.

I have been able to work on some personal development and some professional development.  Most people don't realize that working on personal development can make a huge difference in all their relationships.  I know I never thought to work on personal development before I started working my business.  I have learned so much and because of what I have learned, not only has my business been doing well, my marriage has been wonderful and so has my relationships with my teenagers.  If you have teenagers you know how hard it can be to deal with them sometimes.

On my facebook wall I post positive quotes daily.  I post anything that has to do with working on my attitude to relationships to success.  I believe what I post and I try my darnest to live by it.  Believe it or not, I have had someone tell me that my positive attitude makes them sick!!  For the most part I have people telling me I'm very encouraging.  I want to be encouraging and uplifting.  I want my attitude to be contagious to my friends, acquaintences and my family!  I'm in control of my joy and happiness.  I choose to be happy.  That's is one reason I work on personal development.

Here are some of the leaders I follow and learn from...
God (Bible)
Gary Ryan Blair
Robin Sharma
Brian Tracy
Keith Harrel
Dave Carnegie
John C. Maxwell

I encourage all my readers to work on their personal development.  Don't know where to start?  Google Personal Development and start there.  I promise it will make a positive difference in your life!


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ready for a new week!

I remember dreading Mondays.  As much as I liked my job I hated going to work Monday through Friday.  I hated the routine I had, having to get up, get my kids up and get everyone out the door by 7:30 every morning.  When I resigned from my corporate job I knew I didn't want to go back to work for a long time.  I wanted to be the one leading my kids in the right direction and being involved more in their lives than their teachers or society was.  Society wanted my kids.  No way was I going to give them over.  When I found this home business I wasn't looking for a way to work, or earn money.  It was not worth losing my kids to the public school system.  After a few months of wondering if I could really work at home and raise my kids the way I wanted to raise them I finally decided to give it a try.

This has been the best decision I have ever made, hands down!  It is Sunday evening.  I can't wait to get to work tomorrow morning.  It's also the end of the school year.  With the school schedules inconsistent and school functions I don't have to miss a beat with my work.  I love that I can work my job around my family, instead of working my family around my job.

Tomorrow is a new day.  I am so blessed.  My family has never been happier or healthier.  I can't believe I have been able to earn a good income and be there 100% for my family.  That's not even the biggest reward.  I am also blessed because I get to help other moms do the same thing!  Work at home, prioritize their families and earn a good income.  Life is good!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

What's for dinner when you don't have time to cook?

This kind of goes with my last post.  Please leave me your feedback!


More on teaching my kids healthy habits, eating healthy on a tight schedule!

People ask me all the time, how I'm able to cook nutritional meals for my family with the tight schedule that I have.  So, I thought I'd put some of my tips here.  When my kids were little, all were in extracurricular activities at the same time (now I only have 2 at home so it's not so hard anymore).  It seemed we lived out of my van.  Seriously, I had a cooler in there with food and drinks in it all the time.  There was no way we could afford to eat out all the time and there was no way I was going to get my kids hooked on fast food at such young ages.  After all, they were athletes and had to eat good.  

In the cooler I kept lots of fresh fruit, granola bars, deli style lunch meats, salads and sometimes leftovers.  We also keep dried fruit and nuts around all the time.  Water has always been a big deal at our house.  We still drink lots of water all the time.

At home I always have prepared green salads in zip lock bags.  We always have green salad.  The kids are used to just putting the prepared salad on a plate and maybe adding some grilled chicken or fish that was already prepared, or cheese or seeds or tomatoes or whatever they want on their salad.  The greener the lettuce the better so I use a mixture of lettuces and spinach too.

We live in the Southwest so green chili is a staple around here.  I have it roasted, peeled and chopped all the time.  It's high in vitamin C and very good in everything!  It makes the most boring food extra yummy!  Sometimes I'll put a huge pot of beans in the Crock Pot and it will make a few meals.  We can have it soupy with green chili and cheese one day, the next I'll cook up some ground turkey and make a bean a topping for nachos and if there is anything left after that we might make up some burritos or quesadillas.

Crock Pot cooking is so easy and there are so many nutritional and healthy recipes on the internet.  But, I also like to use the pressure cooker when I'm short on time.  It takes a while to get used to cooking with the pressure cooker the food comes out so good in so little time.  You can put just about anything in the pressure cooker, including deserts :).

I'm all for easy and quick so having things prepared a head of time really helps.  My girls take lunch to school every day.  My little one is able to have warm lunches so the night before I'll put a little bit of leftovers in a microwavable, covered dish and all she has to do is grab that dish on her way out the door.  I also like to buy Gogurts and freeze them.  The girls love them and they're nice and cool when they're ready to eat them.

Portion servings a head of time too!  You know how bad it is to grab a bag of chips or a box of crackers that you really like?  You can't stop eating them!  I love the little snack zip lock baggies.  As you are putting your groceries away put one serving size in the little baggies.  Your family won't over eat that way and again, they can just grab them and go.  Your food last longer and when that happens you save money too!

You know, your family won't eat so much junk if you don't bring it in the home right?  Stop bringing in the cookies and the greasy chips.  Instead, buy healthy snacks like trail mix with fruit and nuts, whole grain crackers and popcorn, granola bars and yogurt and even ice cream!  As long as it has nutritional value I will buy it. If it doesn't, I don't bring it home.  Of course, when my kids are away from me I know they're having their junk treats and I personally think it's fine, but when they're home they have the good for them treats.  They get used to eating that way and they begin go love it.  One more thing, I freeze yogurt.  I only buy whole grain and multi grain breads.  Instead of peanut butter I buy almond butter.  It taste great and doesn't have near the fat that peanut butter does.

Another thing I do is make extra.  I really do not like cooking so when I make casseroles or soups or meats I make more than enough.  You can throw the extra in the freezer in single size servings or 
family size servings and take them out whenever you need to.

We love all kinds of food but we are a chicken and fish family.  Fish is easy and fast to prepare an filled with vitamins and omegas.  Although our family likes a good steak or hamburger we rarely eat them.  I use ground turkey in everything from spaghetti to nachos.  Instead of hamburgers we grill turkey burgers.  We didn't always eat this way but we're so used to it now, the family prefers this to the "old" way.

It isn't as hard as it may sound if you aren't used to this.  Just try it and sooner than later you and your family will get used to it.  You'll save money knowing you're doing a great thing for your family.  Plus, you're teaching your kids healthy eating habits.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Teaching our kids healthy habits

I read a post on facebook today that asked "What healthy habits did you learn from your mom?"  I thought, wow, I didn't learn any healthy habits from my mom!  My mom was a very young and single mother raising 3 kids with what she little she had and what little she knew about raising a family.

Yesterday I watched my 18 year old son create a bomb out of The Works Toilet Bowl Cleaner a plastic bottle and aluminum foil.  He brought it over to show me how a household cleaner can be so dangerous.  You see, we don't have any products in our home with harmful chemicals or ingredients in them.  Everything we use, from bath and body products, to laundry products, to skin care and cosmetics, to cleaning product are guaranteed to be safe for my family.  It is a normal way of life for our family.  I never really talked to my kids about how having harmful chemicals and toxins in our home can hurt us but they know!  They know because I take this issue seriously and I'm teaching them healthy habits.

I love my kids so much, I would do anything for them.  Most of us would do anything for our kids.  We even say we would die for them.  

I do research all the time on the harmful ingredients in our everyday necessities.  I get the facts, I share them with people and can't believe this issue isn't important enough for them to switch brands and try to create a safe and healthy home for their families.  The other day I received a forwarded email about the different causes of cancer.  The email came from a friend who knows the facts because I told her.  She's also a friend with a history of cancers in her family.  She's a friend with two young kids.  She knows the facts, ignores the facts, yet forwards emails like this to people.  She would do anything for her kids, except create a safe and healthy home for them.  I don't get it!

What about you?  What would you do for your children?  Would you die for them?  Here are some facts and statistics.  Read them, then tell me...what would you do for your kids?

Cancer in children has increased 400% the past 20 years.  It is currently the number one killer in children ages 7-9.  Asthma in children has increased 400% too!
1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will have cancer sometime in their life.
Quaternium 15 aka Q15 is a formaldehyde releaser and is know to cause skin problems like eczema and breathing problems like asthma.  Formaldehyde is a cheap preservative, and companies use it because it gives their products a longer shelf life.  It is in products like toothpaste, lotion, shampoo, cosmetics and other products, including baby shampoo.
1,4 dioxane is a known carcinogen, also in a lot of skin care products, bubble bath and baby shampoo and more.
We all know chemicals in the home can cause accidental poisonings.  In fact 89% of all poison exposures occur in the home...every 13 seconds poison control is called.
Household cleaners are the # 1 cause of poisoning of children. The top three culprits according to Poison Control: Household cleaners, bleach and medications.

The labeling laws aren't there to protect the consumers, they're there to protect the manufacturers.
20 years ago health issues like cancer, asthma, eczema, adhd, fibromyagia, MS and others were rare, yet today they are so common.  If we don't have these issues in our family we have someone close to us who does.

I'm curious, what will you do with this information?

My Story :)

Just thought I'd share my story with The Internet CEO Moms.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Go team go!!

It's been a busy few months!  I have focused on building my business and I can tell you I have had the best time ever doing it.  I have learned so many new things from so many of our wonderful CEO Moms.  Things that make my business run smoother.

Working with this team you can't go wrong!  The support is phenomenal.  Who else can support you while you work at home better than moms with the same mission??  With all that I've learned I've been able to expand my team with like-minded moms who love helping others.  Our mission is to help one million moms work successfully from home.  There's no way anyone can carry a bad attitude with support, encouragement and celebrating like we do it.  This truly has been the best decision I have ever made for me and my family.

I read other articles and blogs about how hard it is to manage family and work life when you work at home.  I beg to differ on a lot of those articles!  Our team teaches time management, how to be in control of our finances, how to prioritize your family and be successful at work.  With any home business comes some kind of sacrificing to be successful.  I can tell you that my sacrifices have not been huge.  I schedule my work around my family, instead of scheduling my family around my work.  That's what our team teaches, and encourages and that's what I love!

I will be sharing some of what I learn while I blog.  Hopefully you all will be able to take from some of it and apply it to your lives.  Also, be sure to visit me on facebook and twitter.  There you will also be able to follow me.

To your health and success!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Are you a winner??

To be a winner you need to love what you do. Many billionaires (Bill Gates, Donald Trump, Warren Buffet) continue working even though they have made more money than they could ever spend. They do this because they are inspired by what they do.  Winners are not tapped in the past. They move on. They look for new opportunities, new successes. At the same time, they realize that always living in the future can slow us down as much as always looking behind. The unsuccessful are often too focused on what is ahead and never seem content. The successful understand that what is going on now is just as important as what they are planning for the future.  Determination is a powerful habit. Winners never give up. Winners surround themselves with good people and learn from them. Just look at the example left by a number of famous people. Many, from George Harrison to Hillary Clinton, crawled up the ladder of success on the back of someone else.  I love what I do, I keep on keeping on and I'm determined, therefore I am a winner!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Extend Your Reach

What does it mean to be rich?  How does one live a richer life?

The word Rich comes from the root word for reach.

You are rich when you reach out and expand any dimension of your life, which is accomplished by expanding your comfort zone.  The following provides a 9 point plan for getting richer right now.

The first type of reaching out is a personal one.  You become richer when you reach beyond your intellectual abilities, by reading great books, by engaging in stimulating conversations and by challenging conventional wisdom.

The second type of reaching out is physical.  When you expand your physical energy, challenge your physical limits and improve your ability to perform, you are reaching out and living a richer life.  The blessings and joys of a rich, healthy life can be yours when you choose to make them priorities in your life.

The third type of reaching out is recreational.  When you spend time in joyful pursuits you are enjoying the riches of life.  When you take good care of yourself allowing  for rest, renewal and relaxation without feeling guilty,you are ensuring the greatest return on your current and future performance.

The fourth type of reaching out is family.  When you spend time strengthening, clarifying and enhancing your relationships with your spouse, children, siblings and parents, you're becoming richer and living a more satisfying life.  Family is the emotional core of our lives.  Every deposit into your family's emotional bank account is a deposit into emotional prosperity.

The fifth type of reaching out is friendship.  When you reach out by focusing on relationships with new and old friends you are enjoying a fulfilling life.  You are rich when surrounded by people you love, trust, and with whom you care for deeply.

The sixth type of reaching out is community.  The definition of a life well lived rests on a commitment of service to others.  You are reaching out and expanding your social conscience-nous when you change the driving question from how can I be successful? to what can I contribute that will significantly impact the mission, the performance and the overall results of the institution or the community where I serve.  Focus on how you can  contribute, how you can give back.  That is how you automatically become richer!

The seventh type of reaching out is career.  When you make the decision to commit your life to excellence, to every increasing accomplishments at every increasing levels of skill and mastery, you are reaching out.  As a result, your reputation is enriched, your options become more abundant and your rewards become far more fruitful.  By continually raising the bar you ensure greatness and improve your chances of getting rich financially.

The eighth type of reaching out is financial.  Money, without a doubt is the reward you receive for the service you render.  The more value your offer, the greater will be your reward.  When you begin thinking of ways you can be of greater service to your customers, and yourself, you will not only begin to earn more money, but will also enable you to grow more intellectually and spiritually.  A focus on value creation is the hallmark of success and the gateway to financial prosperity.  You must also be mindful that money is not the first priority in happy people's lives.  Health, relationships with family and friends, career satisfaction and spiritual growth are all far more important.

The ninth type of reaching out is spiritual.  While there is plenty of talk of financial net worth, the truth is your spiritual net worth carries far more cloud.  Faith is spiritual capital.  The absence of faith is spiritual bankruptcy.  You are expanding your reach when you practice forgiveness, gratitude, obedience and benevolence.  You are rewarded with peace of mind, unbreakable faith and a deeper richer spiritual life that is far more valuable than rubies, diamonds or pearls.  When you expand your comfort zone of what is possible, you are reaching out and living a fuller, richer, more prosperous life.

Do you want to get rich right now?

Challenge yourself throughout the day to reach out, to expand your limits, to passionately pursue your goals and dreams, because the rewards WILL follow!

Gary Ryan Blair