Reflecting On 2018

 Back in December of 2009 I started writing a review of the year. It was an idea I found on someone else's blog, and it seemed like a good way to sum up the year. As much as I may think I'll remember when certain events occurred, it's been nice to have this record to look back on over the years...and so I continue with this year's installment. 

Lost On Christmas Eve

  I wanted to share this story of a Christmas our family experienced many years we will never forget!

It was Christmas Eve, and we were spending the evening with my parents, as we did every year. I come from a large family, and our four children could always count on meeting up with some cousins at Grandma and Grandpa’s house; especially during the Christmas season. By the time we arrived, a small crowd had already gathered.

Luke 15:24

Our Family Tree

The old tree from my childhood provides a beautiful analogy for our family tree.

When I was a child there was a big maple tree in our yard that we spent hours playing on. 

My brothers hung swings from one branch that reached out across the lane. If you look closely at the photo, you can even see where the stretched out branch has been scarred by the ropes of our swings. 

 Another branch reached out the other direction, running along the ground and then angling up toward the sky; the perfect climbing tree.

I have a goodly heritage

 As we grew older, it became the favourite backdrop for many family pictures. Eventually, the tree started to die, and my parents made the decision to have it removed....but those roots stretched deep, and the seeds from that maple tree had been scattered for years. The tree may be gone, but it lives on in our memories and in the many new trees it seeded.

My Oral Lichen Planus Diet

 In my post, 5 Steps to Living Well, I wrote a little about my diet, as well as some of the supplements I take that have helped me keep my Oral Lichen Planus in check and avoid the need for medication.
  "I've eliminated citrus fruits, spices, vinegar, tomatoes and tomato sauces. I also try to avoid soy, and for now, I've reduced my gluten and lactose intake, cut added sugar and sugary foods, quit junk food such as chips and other empty snacks, and fast foods."

Today, I thought I'd share a little of what I've learned.

 Food choices and specific foods that I've found helpful.

autoimmune diet

Life Is Short, Live It Well!

  I couldn't help it! When she made the following statement on FB, I just had to respond,
"Good nutrition can heal any illness and keep you from getting sick." And just like that, I was unfriended! 

Living Well Defined

15 Minutes to Fitness

I recently came across a quote by Phyllis Diller, "My idea of exercise is a good brisk sit." Sounds about right to me! I've never been a particularly active person; in fact I'm a bit of a couch potato. I wish there was a way to be physically fit without actually getting up from my desk, but so far I haven't found one. I know that exercise is a key component of overall wellness at any age, but especially important as we get older, and I'm determined to force this potato off the couch!

Getting Fit 15 minutes at a time

The one activity I do enjoy is walking, or even hiking, but who am I kidding?....that would require not only getting out of my chair, but taking the time to get outside! So, what's the next best thing? Walking at home in my house. I started this about a year ago, and I really do enjoy it, but it's still a struggle to stay consistent. 

I've tried a few different programs over the past year, but I keep coming back to Leslie Sansone's  Walk At Home 

 I know 15 minutes doesn't sound like much, but for many of us, it's a good starting point.

Below is a link to Leslie's Youtube channel, as well as a direct link to her Walk 15 video. I've also added Nick's Walk 15 right here on the page. It's a great place to start.

Walk 15 With Leslie Sansone

It occurred to me that there are probably others needing what I need.....motivation, encouragement....and most of all, accountability, so I started a support group. If you're interested, ask to join:

Read this series: My Wellness Journey

Follow us on Facebook: Living Our Lives Well

Wellness In Every Aspect

  This morning, I was blessed to be able to enjoy a brunch with the ladies at our church and to hear from our special speaker, Melanie Sasek. Her topic was Building Faith in God's Purposes, and she spoke on the inevitability of change, and how God uses it in our lives. It's funny how God can use a stranger to speak to me about things I didn't even know I needed to hear or be reminded of, and to get my focus back to where it should be.

Surrendering to God every aspect of life

We Grow Best Outside Our Comfort Zone

 I love how this flower decided to plant itself on our patio outside the comfort of  the planter! I have no idea why these plants choose to grow in a narrow crack between patio blocks, but in my experience with Yarrow, the tougher the conditions the better they grow. They don't need a lot of water or even good soil to thrive, they just put down their roots, look up to the sun and bloom! Maybe we should take a lesson from them!

Benefits of stepping outside our comfort zone

Are you feeling like you're not growing where you are?

Read this series: Downsizing & Decluttering

Read this series: My Wellness Journey

Follow us on Facebook: Living Our Lives Well

For women who would like some encouragement or accountability for your own journey, we have a support group: the Christian Ladies Network

Got Cucumbers? 4 Easy Salads

 A big part of living our lives well is in our food choices. We don't plant a big garden, but there's nothing like being able to go out and pick fresh veggies for a salad!

 These are 4 of our favourite cucumber salads. 

4 Easy and Delicious Cucumber Salads

5 Steps To Living Well

The idea that there is a one size fits all program out there just sets people up to fail. And if you've done any reading on wellness at all you already know that for every article touting the perfect method, there's another one saying the exact opposite! So please don't look at what I've done and assume that I believe it's THE way! Everyone is different, and it's important to keep that in mind. I can only share what is working for me and my specific health needs. My goal is to encourage you to find what works for you, and if you need some help and encouragement along the way, I'm happy to do what I can!

These are my 5 steps to living well.

Steps to health and wellness

Finding Wellness Through Good Nutrition

 Garden tours, taking pictures, landscaping our yard, and working on DIY projects are some of my favorite things to do...and to write about. But for the past 4 months my focus has changed...for good reason. 
 After years of ignoring my health, as well as my doctor, I finally realized I had to listen to my body. There's something about a chronically sore mouth that gets a person's attention...or at least it got mine. 
And that put me on a new to finding wellness.

steps to health and wellness