Personal Mission Statement

personal mission statementThere are mission and vision statements for EVERY organization, school, business, church, etc. that I can think of. I’ll be honest and tell you that when I see, yet another, mission statement my first reaction is usually “yada yada . . . same ol’, same ol’” and I quickly scan and move on.  The truth is that a mission statement isn’t at all helpful, unless it’s something that you are passionate about and it inspires you.  Only then does the mission statement become important and so much more than words on a page.  

The second piece that makes a mission statement worth the work and actually make a difference in your life is keeping it in front of you on a regular basis.  It doesn’t do any good to go to the work of writing it and then file it away or stuff it in a drawer.  It needs to be displayed or at least placed where you will read and reflect on it regularly.  I placed mine in my prayer journal.  I see it regularly and can pray through the pieces that I included.

Four years ago, I worked through the process of writing my own mission statement and continue to revise it.

My mission in life is . . .

*To daily walk with the Lord seeking Him in prayer, studying and obeying His word and surrendering to His will for my life.

*To allow Christ’s light to shine through me that others would see, come to know and praise our Father in Heaven.

*To make Jay feel loved, respected, encouraged, and supported.

*To love, encourage, train and have fun with Cason, Charli and Landri, while raising them to know, deeply love and trust in God..

*To choose joy despite circumstances.

*To praise God with my words and actions.

*To encourage others in their journeys of faith in God and as they aim to live their best lives and serving those in their circles of influence, as I pursue growth in these areas for myself.

I’ll confess.  I fall very, VERY SHORT of these things!!!!!  There’s lots of room for growth.  But this is who I WANT to be, and reading these things on a regular basis inspires me to make choices that move me closer to living a life in which I am accomplishing these things on a regular basis.

I hear the same thing over and over again from the ladies that go through my Intentional Living Academy.  They very often express their discouragement with where they currently are in life as we complete the assessment and several exercises leading up to the life plan writing process. It’s painful sometimes to reflect on our lives, but the truth is that we won’t see positive change until we recognize where were currently are (which is not only just recognizing the room for growth, but also means celebrating the good in our lives), determining where we want to go, and developing a plan on how to get there.  This process brings so much clarity and peace!  It’s the first step to living the lives we dream of!

As a side note, I will tell you that as women, we can be very hard on ourselves.  Often times we see our shortcomings and the areas that aren’t where we want them to be, but fail to step back and celebrate the many things that we are doing right.  Stopping to the celebrate has been an important part of my Intentional Living Academy for many of my clients.

When writing your own personal mission statement, I’d encourage you to start by answering these questions.

  1. Who are the most important people in your life?  How do you want to positively affect them?  What kind of relationship do you want to develop with them?
  2. What do you value most?
  3. What do you want others to think of when they think of you?  How do you want to positively impact the people you come in contact with?
  4. How has God gifted you and how will you use that gift?
  5. What brings you joy, peace and contentment?

I’d highly encourage you to answer these questions and would love to hear your answers.  I’m passionate about empower women to become their best selves and live their best lives!

If you are interested in learning more about living intentionally, I’d love to offer you my FREE Intentional Living Assessment.  Click here to sign up to receive it.

The Best Workout for YOU!

14800272_10154230244414081_295278752_o-1Did you know that 100,000 to 1 million people will search “workouts”, “workout plans”, “workout programs”, etc. on the internet EACH MONTH?!  It seems that everyone is searching for the perfect workout plan that will bring the results that we so desperately want.


To complicate this, there are TONS of different kinds of workouts, everything from boot camps, crossfit, insanity, zumba, running, pilates, boxing, swimming, weight lifting, walking, cycling, tennis, and on and on.


There are 4 main types of exercises.  These include endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility.  There are huge benefits to each of these and many workout programs will contain a combination of several of these.   


But the truth of the matter is, that you could pick any of these different types of workouts, but if you won’t stick with it, it doesn’t matter how great the exercise is!  The Daniel Plan uses the phrase, “The best workout for you is the one that you will do.”  It’s such a true statement.  You are far better off to find an exercise that you enjoy and want to do, than to force yourself to do something you dread.


Chalene Johnson terms it your “Soul-mate workout”.  It’s a workout that makes you feel alive.  The time passes fast and then you look forward to your next workout.  She says, “Your soul-mate workout clears your mind, calms your emotions, awakens your spirit, gives you energy, creativity, and drive.”


14741681_10154230254784081_1915879503_nMy soul-mate workouts are dancing and strength training.  I grew up dancing, but stopped when I went to college.  This was partially due to burn out and partially due to not having access to dance classes.  When they released Cize Live last year, I fell in love with dancing all over again.  I got certified to teach it last April and am actually teaching twice a week back in the studio that I took classes growing up.  If you are local and interested in joining us for a class click here.


My other favorite is strength training, specifically with the bar and weighted plates.  I love lifting heavy and the feeling of gaining strength.  I also love that you continue to burn calories for hours after a good strength training session and it positively affects metabolism.  I’m all about calorie burn and increased metabolism.  


So, I’d love to know.  What is your favorite type of exercise? What is your soul-mate workout?

If you aren’t sure what your soul-mate workout is, let’s talk and see if we can figure it out!

FREE Intentional Living Assessment Workbook

ila-esoDo you desire to be the best steward possible of the life the Lord has given you?

Do you often find yourself saying things like “I’m busy” and “There isn’t enough time in the day”?

Do you desire to give your best to the people that matter most, but feel over-committed and overwhelmed by the many demands on your life?

If so, I’d love to share my FREE Intentional Living Assessment Workbook with you! In this 7 page workbook, I will walk you through steps to determine your priorities and define actions steps to move you toward the life you desire and the purpose God created you for!

Click here to sign up for my FREE WORKBOOK and other helpful resources.

Benefits of Probiotics

benefits of probioticsThis post is sponsored by Just Thrive. I received product in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own.


Over the last several of weeks, I have been learning a good deal about the benefits of probiotics, how they work, and the effects of a good quality probiotic. But more important than just learning about the positive effects of taking these probiotics, I have experienced these effects firsthand.  

Gut Health and Digestion

Talking about digestion and healthy bowels is never a really pleasant conversation, but the importance of our gut health is HUGE. While I don’t suffer from IBS or leaky gut, I do suffer from thyroid issues and digestive issues.  Since starting to take Just Thrive probiotics, I’ve experienced an improvement in the area of digestive health.  After reading about all of the positive effects, I had asked my husband to start taking them daily.  He was very skeptical at first, but recently admitted that he thinks they have helped him and asked me to order more.

Supports Immune Function

Did you know that 70% of your immune system exists in your intestines?  Immune function isn’t something that most of us think about until we are sick.  Working in a school and having three little ones, I greatly appreciate the increased immune support from taking a probiotic daily.  It’s also incredibly important to me to start my kids off right with healthy guts and good immune support.


Finding a Good Quality Probiotic

Good quality probiotics are incredibly important for gut health and full of benefits.  When looking for a good quality probiotic look for one that:

*has a high survivability rate (obviously 100% survivability is best),

*is not only able to make it to the gut, but is also able to remain stable in the presence of antibiotics,

*consists of multiple Bacillus strains.

benefits of probioticsJust Thrive has all of these components and more.  It is a good quality probiotic which consists of four Bacillus strains, which means that 3 billion cells arrive alive in the small intestine.  The friendly bacteria begin to colonize, promoting digestive and overall health.  Just Thrive is able to actually read the microbial environment, getting rid of the bad bacteria and feeding the good bacteria.  Just Thrive can also help seal up leaky guts.  In fact, in a recent human clinical trial with Just Thrive, EVERY person was healed of leaky gut.  Just Thrive also includes beneficial antioxidants and is the first combined probiotic and antioxidant product. If you are looking for a good quality probiotic, I would highly recommend this Just Thrive probiotic.


Dangerous Traps: Perfectionism and Comparison

IMG_3782-copy-150x150It is incredibly easy, especially as women, to fall into the two dangerous traps of perfectionism and comparison. Society tells us that we need to have it all, do it all, look perfect, and have it all together.  But the truth of the matter is that we will NEVER have it all or be able to do it all this side of heaven.


The word perfectionism makes me cringe.  I am SO far from perfect and fall incredibly short each and every day.  For a long time, I believed I needed to look like I had it all together on the outside while I felt like such a liar and hypocrite on the inside.  I ended each day feeling guilt, like a failure and a hypocrite.

Society tells us to be perfect, look like we have our lives together, and that we need to do it all.  Truth is that there was only one person that walked this earth in perfection . . . Jesus Christ.  The rest of us are going to fall short daily.  When we chase perfectionism, we miss the pursuit of God and the blessing of relationship with Him.  We also miss His plan for our lives when we are so busy chasing someone else’s definition of success.

So what do we do with this?  Totally give up and give in?  We press on! We keep striving and refusing to let the failure beat us down and make us feel unworthy.  We grant ourselves grace and celebrate that we are doing the best we can!


The trap of comparison causes one of two dangerous effects. It either causes us to put ourselves down because we feel that someone else is better than us OR it causes us to think and act as though we are better than someone else.  I recently heard someone say that they were told as a child, “You aren’t better than anyone else and no one else is better than you.”  I love this and plan to instill this in my children as they grow up!

Comparison is also dangerous because it helps us to justify sin.  “My sin is not as bad as…” The trap of comparison keeps us so caught up in looking up or down at others, that we miss His plan for us!

Give Grace

Sadly, perfectionism and comparison are going to be struggles, here on earth, so let’s let ourselves and others off of the hook and give grace.  Let’s walk in gratitude for who God created us to be and what He’s blessed us with.  Let’s press into our Lord, love Him and others.  Let’s walk in His plan for our lives and not His plan for someone else’s life.

I’m incredibly passionate about the process that we go through in my Intentional Living Academy because it helps us to define what matters most.  We can’t do it all but we can focus on what matters most and give the people that matter most to us our best.  It also focuses on getting productive.  There’s nothing better than knowing at the end of the day that we loved well, focused on the people that matter most, learned from our mistakes and can tackle the following day with the same joy, love and grace.

My FREE Printable Daily Planner

IMG_8179Do you struggle to stay organized? Do you wish you could get more accomplished each day?

I have used a million different planners and finally created one that has all of the components I need to get organized, focused and productive.

I’d love to send you my FREE printable Daily Planner and a video with tips on how to use it to increase productivity!

Enter your info below to receive my printable Daily Planner, video with tips and more.

Using Probiotics to Improve Weight Loss

IMG_8187What if there was more to losing weight than just eating less and exercising more?  It turns out that science is now suggesting that it’s possible to limit how many calories your body gets from the food you eat by altering the types of bacteria in your gut.  These studies show that our gut bacteria have a direct reflection on our weight and can directly affect our metabolism.


I was floored after reading the research!  What if dropping weight could start as easily as adding a high quality probiotic to a high-fiber diet?  I’d be sold for sure!


Making Sense of the Science

At first this concept seemed pretty complicated, but as I continued to read more about it, it wasn’t as confusing as I had first thought.  Basically, the ratio of bacteriodetes to firmicutes, both types of bacteria found in the gut, is what directly affects our metabolism. People with more bacteriodetes bacteria tend to be leaner, while people with more firmicutes in their guts tend to be obese, have metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and inflammation.  


Knowing this, we should try to grow the number of bacteriodetes bacteria in our guts.  The first step to doing this is to eat a diet high in fiber supporting the growth of bacteriodetes.  Another way of affecting gut health is by reducing the amount of sugar and artificial sweeteners we consume.  Firmicutes thrive on sugar and simple carbohydrates, so cutting or limiting these from the diet help to starve the bad bacteria.  Incorporating intermittent fasting approximately 5 days a week (a fasting window of 12-14 hours a day) allows time for bacteroidetes to grow, too.  


Once you’ve changed your eating habits to help promote the growth of “good” gut bacteria, the next step is to be sure that you are consuming the right kind of probiotic. The right probiotic will convert fiber and protein into fat-busting compounds instead of just creating gas.  Consuming high-fiber and nutrient-rich foods along with a probiotic will help convert the fiber to SCFAs (short chain fatty-acids), which are critical in getting the metabolic benefits that lead to increased weight loss.


Not all probiotics are created equal

When looking for a probiotic to help increase the number of good bacteria in your gut, you’ll want to look for one that contains at least 1 billion CFU of Bacillus endospores (a type of bacteroidetes bacteria).  I was thrilled to discover that the Wai Drink Mixes from Silver Fern Brand that I’ve been drinking, contain 5 billion CFU, much more than the recommended 1 billion CFU. Wai Drink Mixes also contain the Bacillus endospores needed to increase the ratio of good to bad gut bacteria.  And, as as an added bonus, I love the taste of these drink mixes and my kids think they are a treat!


FullSizeRender (4)A quality probiotic, such as the probiotic found in Wai Drink Mixes, will also help to promote healthy fat metabolism. Good probiotics also boost your immune system from the inside out by directly affecting your gut flora. And, they help promote good digestion, too.  
What if boosting your weight loss was as simple as adding a quality probiotic to your fiber- and nutrient-rich diet each day?  According to this science, it is that simple! The good news is that you can change the programming of your gut by using the right probiotic and feeding the good bacteria in your gut by eating the right foods.


Disclaimer: Product was provided from the Silver Fern Brand Company but all opinions are my own.

If you are interested in checking out the Silver Fern Brand probiotics and other products go to



High Fiber Baked Goods

high fiber high proteinSilver Fern Brand has provided product for this review. No monetary compensation was provided. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Confession: I have a sweet tooth. . . like a serious sweet tooth! And, sadly, I’ve passed that on to my kids.  We don’t often have sweets at home because, well frankly, they aren’t safe in our home. Our family can gobble down a pan of brownies or plate of cookies in no time flat, so we do best to keep the sweets out of the house and enjoy them as a treat when we are out.  


You can only imagine my excitement to hear that I was going to have the opportunity to review some baking mixes that were healthy and, specifically, high-fiber and high-protein treats! I have to admit I was skeptical, but also optimistic.  


high fiberThe first Paka Mix we tried was the Double-Chocolate Brownies. While they didn’t taste exactly like the sugar-filled brownies we’ve made in the past, I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed them. They satisfied my sweet tooth and I was loving both the nutrition info and the ingredients. At 5 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber per brownie, this is something that I can get excited about sharing with my kids and not feel too guilty about indulging my sweet tooth. There was also some built-in portion control with knowing that there were 6 grams of fiber, so it wouldn’t have been wise to eat the entire pan.

high fiber


The next Paka Mix that we tried was the blueberry muffins. These were an incredible hit with my kids! So much so that there were tears when I cut them off at one muffin each. The blueberries tasted wonderful, they weren’t too sweet, and they were also protein- and fiber-filled, which this mama loves! This mix will definitely be reordered for our family.



protein pancakes


The third Paka Baking Mix that we tried was the Protein Pancakes. These were a huge hit at our house and fit nicely with my high-protein goal. At 16 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber, these made for a great and healthy addition to our breakfast for dinner meal. I made the entire box in one setting and froze what we had left over. It’s been nice to already have them made and pull pancakes out one at a time to heat for a meal or snack.


I was pleasantly surprised at all three of these baking mixes and will be reordering them. This mama loves to know that the good-tasting treats that I eat and that I feed my family also come with great health benefits!

You can find these products

Life Plan: Marriage

marriageSix months ago I would have told you that Jay and I highly valued our marriage and were in a good spot.  While those things are both true, what I recognized through the life plan writing process is that we were doing very little to grow together as a couple.  


Our house is BUSY!  The kids are at ages that they are very demanding of our time, energy and focus.  What I started to realize going through the life plan process is that we were spending time together as a family, but it was totally focused on the kids.  We would start to have a conversation and about two sentences in we were interrupted.  By the time the kids went to bed, we were both exhausted and would turn on mindless TV together but purposeful in-depth conversations was the exception and not the rule.


Our family had become very child-centered and not marriage-centered.  I started to realize that this was an area of my life that I needed to make a change.  We have begun to be more purposeful in having conversations.  Actually turning off the TV and getting the kids busy on something else, and having real conversations.  


Someone gave us a devotion book for married couples when we got married and I have to confess it sat on the book shelf unused for years.  Several years ago, we opened it and found that it was a perfect way to start our mornings together.  It is a quick read, includes scripture, devotion, prayer and a thought/question. I won’t lie and tell you we do this every day, because we don’t, but some is better and none. Being in God’s word together, even if for just a few minutes has been a wonderful thing for our marriage.


The other thing that I have changed in this area is praying more diligently for Jay.  Some of the things that I pray for him . . .

  • that he continues to seek the Lord and grow in relationship with Him – Prob 3:5-6, Eph 5:15-16
  • that he will walk in obedience and glorify the Lord in his choices – 1 Cor 10:13, John 7:17-18
  • for wisdom, knowledge and understanding – Eph 1:16-19, 2 Peter 3:18, Prov 2:7, Prov 9:10, Psalm 112:1
  • that God would bless the work of his hands – Psalm 90:17, Col 3:23-24
  • for his health, safety and protection – 3 John 1:2, 1 Cor 3:16-17, 1 Cor 6:19-20, Psalm 4:8, 2 Thess 3:3
  • for our marriage – Eph 5:23-29; 1 Peter 3:7
  • that he leads our family well and is a Godly father to our kids – Eph 6:4, Col 3:21, 2 Tim 2:1-2



Jay and I are celebrating ten years of marriage TODAY!  It’s been a wild and wonderful first 10 years and I have no doubt with some intentionality that the next 10 years will be even more wonderful!


Probiotics and Gut Health

ProbioticSilver Fern Brand has provided product for this review. No monetary compensation was provided. All thoughts and opinions are my own


As a busy, health-conscious woman and mom, I’m always looking for new solutions that are easy and beneficial to my family’s health, but most importantly taste good! I was pleasantly surprised as I started drinking the Wai drink mixes. They are incredibly tasty, satisfy my sweet tooth, and, in just a week, I’ve experienced a difference in digestion.  


Gut health is something that we are hearing more and more about. While it’s incredibly important to fuel our bodies with nutrients, it’s also important that we have good gut health to effectively digest and utilize the nutrients that we are working so hard to ingest.  Poor gut health can lead to things like thyroid issues, joint pain, chronic fatigue, among other conditions. Consuming probiotics is one of the most important things we can do to improve our gut health. Probiotics are live healthy bacteria that are beneficial for the digestive system, increasing the immune system and decreasing illness, promoting urinary tract health, and improving overall health because we are taking care of ourselves from the inside out. When our guts are healthier, we are also able to more effectively metabolize the foods that we eat. Wai’s special probiotic is a spore-forming probiotic that converts the prebiotics and dietary fat into short-chain fatty acids that supports healthy fat metabolism.  Who doesn’t want to metabolize fat better?!


I am not able to get my probiotics from foods like yogurt and kefir because I am dairy intolerant, so drinking the Wai mixes has been incredibly beneficial for me. I also love knowing that my kids are receiving the health benefits in a drink that they enjoy and think is a treat. These drinks come in flavors like blackberry pomegranate, strawberry kiwi, and pina colada. While I love the flavors, they have been a little too sweet even for my sweet tooth. I have been adding more water than the 16 oz. called for in the directions. An added benefit of adding more than 16 oz. of water is that there is more to share with my kids. They have no idea that the special “treat” drinks that I’m giving them is full of health benefits. We haven’t been drinking them long enough to notice a difference in our immune systems, but that is an added benefit that I’m looking forward to.


probioticYou can find these products at


Stay tuned for a review on the #silverfernbrand #pakabakingmixes!  We already have some favorites that I look forward to sharing with you soon.