Podcast -- What I Won't Apologize For

This is our "THINGS I WON'T APOLOGIZE FOR" podcast.  Think about it.  It's a great conversation starter, right?  Today, on we chat about what we won't apologize for being obsessed with and saying NO and YES to.  You get the idea.  :)  Trust us, it's lots of fun!  

http://bit/ly/TLRshow80

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How To Ask For What You Want

Do you have goals you want to accomplish and wonder what is the best way to enroll the support of your spouse, your co-workers, or your family members?  Our MAKE IT HAPPEN expert and co-host, Michelle McCullough, shares tips and tools on how to ask for what you want and get it, without sacrificing respect.

 

 

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Podcast -- Healthy Controversy

What defines a healthy controversy?  When it is good to share your opinion?  And how?  Our living room chat offers tips and tools to help keep controversy to a minimum, but also accept it's a part of life.  

Here is the link:  http://bit.ly/TLRshow74

More pocasts on www.fromthelivingroom.com

And on iTunes

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Grace Changes Everything

This podcast focusses on how grace becomes a saving power in your every day comings and goings.  For more information on SAVING SPACE FOR GRACE, email our co-host Jodi Robinson--jodimarierobinson@gmail.com.  Her life-coaching focuses on making space for grace in your life--and learning to live in the space where God's love lives.  GRACE.  You may think you know grace, but there is so much more to know.  Jodi will schedule a walk on the parkway with you.  Meet you at your favorite sandwich shop.  Speak at a group of friends you've gathered together to learn more about how you can make more space in your life for the eternal principle of grace.  She'll visit with you at the part so your kids can run around and be kids!  And if you have a dog, well, she'll dog walk with you.  Point being.  She'll make space for you, wherever your space is.  

Dive into Grace Principles to lift you to a new level of joy and peace.  

Our grace conversation begins here--but will continue in other shows.  

ON PC:  http://bit.ly/TLR72Show

Or www.fromthelivingroom.com

iTunes --  https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-living-room/id1006910453

 

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New Podcasts for 2017

Hi, friends. We're the "LIVING ROOM" and we just released some new shows. We record several shows at once and then air them on Tuesdays, because, like so many of you, we're busy moms with stuff to do! In the last month, we've shared shows on marriage, grief, meaningful celebrations, and how to raise teenagers. We're not experts. But we all share personal stories mixed in with some laughter and sometimes tears.  We're real, honest, and upfront in hopes you'll feel supported, encouraged, and like you're never alone. Because we all live in the same living room, right? We're just in different ages, stages, and spaces.  The best thing is -- we learn best from each other.

So, we hope you'll come visit our LIVING ROOM and take a listen to a few of our latest podcasts. 

Find our shows here --
www.fromthelivingroom.com

https://toginet.com/rss/itunes/thelivingroom

And...always remember to give yourself some living room.

--Jodi

Find all podcasts at www.fromthelivingroom.com and on iTunes

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-living-room/id1006910453

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Avoiding Burnout

In our "Avoiding Burnout" show that is available for download at www.fromthelivingroom.com, we shared the acronym ARISE to talk through some tips on how to avoid burnout.

 

A- stands for AWARE. When you're feeling edgy and anxious, like the scales are ready to tip, it's important to become aware of your space and circumstances. Awareness makes you honest with yourself.  It let's you admit that what you're doing isn't working and that it's okay to re-evaluate things. First things first; become aware.  

 

R - stands for RENEW. Renew your environment with a quick change of pace.  Take a walk outside or do some Yoga stretches. Renew your spirit by listening to peaceful meditation music. Invite a loved one or friend to see a movie and go to dinner somewhere you've never been before. Do something different to renew your soul and you'll feel renewed an energized once you return to your to-do list.  You'll be refreshed and ready to get back to work, and more mindful of what the absolute necessities are verses the nice to do's so you can better prioritize your energy and time.  

 

I - stands for "I" -- meaning you matter.  So, make sure you're making self-care a priority.  If you feel like you don't have consistent self-care practices, maybe start with making a joy list, and choose to do something from your joy list--actually choose it and DO it-- so that you care for the "I" in you.  

 

S - stands for SURRENDER. Surrender to powers that can help you push back from burnout. Your higher power and also your friends, family, people who love and care about you and support you, are here in your life to help you.  Why do women so often try so hard to do things alone?  We're crazy when we do!  The "S" stands for surrender to remind us of the truth--that we all need helpers.  Sometimes surrendering looks like bringing in help from the outside.  Maybe it looks like scheduling a house cleaner to get you over a hump.  Or, hiring someone to do yard work so you can get caught up on the inside of the house.  Or, delegating responsibilities at home or work or at church to capable individuals that God has placed in your path.  The let go to how "they" choose to do the jobs, because you're surrendering, right?  Not controlling.  Remember also that surrendering means waiting for the the right time and right season to do some projects and take on roles you're passionate about, because we can't everything all at once.  I like to say...surrender to "what is" so that "what should be" can be.  

 

E - stands for ELEVATE. Elevate yourself to higher ground so you can see all that is going on around you.  Only then can you see things clearly.  Sometimes, literally  taking yourself to higher ground and doing something like going on a hike elevates us and helps us see our life from a different perspective.  There is something about being in nature that helps me, so sometimes, even when things are hectic, it's work if for me to take 30 minutes to an hour and go out in nature and BE IN NATURE.  Sometimes I take a  journal with me so I can jot down promptings that I have while I'm hiking.  Or, I'll listen to talk from my church's General Conference.  Elevating yourself to receive inspiration can look like visiting a house of worship, reading an uplifting message, or meditating and praying.  All of these activities will elevate your mind, heart, and soul and help you engage your life, and avoid burning out.

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Save Space for Grace

Several years ago, my family and I arrived at a river’s edge.  We walked single file, along the river for several yards, looking for a place to cross it.  My husband spotted a shallow bend and instructed us to wait on the shoreline.  He said he needed to do something to make crossing the river safer and easier for us.  He needed to fill in the spaces between the rocks, because some rocks were too far apart and he didn’t want to risk anyone slipping and falling.  

He found three large rocks, and one by one, he carried them and dropped them into the water, next to the existing rocks, making the gaps between the rocks much smaller.  After he’d finished, he motioned for us to cross.  While we did, he remained nearby, standing on a rock, with his arms outstretched, hands opened, just in case any of us needed a steady hand.     

 

The kids made it to other side, no problem.  I, on the other hand, lost my balance, twice.  My foot slipped into the cold rushing water and if it weren’t for a steady hand grabbing me, I would have fallen down and been soaked the rest of the hike, and possibly been hurt.  I felt so grateful he was there to save me from falling!  Even though the water wasn’t deep, it was a blessing not to hike the rest of the way wet.       

 

Once on safely on the bank, I briefly glanced back at the river we’d crossed.  Then, seeing my kids all high-fiving each other, I decided to save something to remind me of that experience  So, I reached down into the water and pulled out a small, oval stone, then slipped it into my pocket.       

 

When we returned home I set the stone on my bathroom counter with three other smooth stones I had collected from other hikes.  

 

Months later, on Christmas day, lights on the tree twinkled.  Bows and wrapping paper littered the living room floor.  Wrapped in a cozy blanket, I sat and watched my kids enjoy their presents.  Leading up to Christmas, there had been a fast-flowing current of pressure, the kind that always accompanies buying gifts, planning a mixture of spiritual and secular holiday traditions, amidst the demands of keeping everyday life flowing along.  Sitting there quiet and observing, I  received an unexpected gift iin the form of a memory.  I believe it's purpose was to teach me about grace.  

 

I was reminded of our summer hike and how we had crossed that riverbed.  At first, in my mind, I saw my husband filling in the gaps with rocks so our family could cross the river, except.  But then I didn't see my husband I saw my Savior.  

 

The past year had been one of reviving, physically and emotionally, yet, instantly, my heart felt content as I recognized evidences of Christ placing stepping stones in my riverbed, each and every day, so I could continue taking care of my family, with just enough energy, hope, peace, and purpose, in spite of challenges and adversities.

 

God had gifted me grace.  

 

Now it is time to continue making space for grace.  So that I can LIVE IN GRACE, each and every day. 

 

Picture yourself standing at the water’s edge, looking at a river you’re trying to cross. Do you see carefully placed stepping stones?  The ones where God has placed in the exact places you need them?  So you can get to where you are going?  

 

It is up to you to create the space in your heart and soul to see and recognize God's grace. And how good it is.  

 

That rock, the one I retrieved from the river’s edge that sits on my counter.  It no longer represents a memory of our family hike.  Instead, it symbolizes how God's grace fills in the gaps and makes me a better person.  

 

Grace fills in the gaps when we have sinned.  

 

Grace gives us a reprieve, when challenges exhaust our reserves.  

 

Grace is the enabling power of God that gives us the desire, ability, and hope to repent. 

 

Grace is a rescuing power, like a flotation ring that surrounds our soul, keeping our spirits afloat whenever we’ve fallen into a river of devastation, discontentment, or disillusionment.  

 

Grace steadies us so we can fully accept the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  

 

Grace does for us what my husband did for me and my family that summer day at the river; it fills in the spaces.     

 

I challenge myself to find stepping stones of grace daily.  I want to see the miracles of grace God continually places in my riverbed of life.  I desire to see and feel this amazing gift.  

It is time for me to save space for grace.

#savespaceforgrace

-Jodi Robinson

Jodi shares her thoughts on grace on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/savespaceforgrace/

She writes for The Living Room on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom/?fref=ts

And co-hosts living room podcasts on www.fromthelivingroom.com.

Her published works include "Precious in His Sight", "A Royal Guardian", and "Women of Virtue", and other essays in various compliations published by Covenant Communications.

She is a wife, mother, avid snowmobiller, dog walker, and admits to eating Hershey kisses before breakfast.     

To invite her to speak at your event, email her at jodimarierobinson (at) gmail (dot) com.

 

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Love is In The Air


Summer lovin' is in the air--literally. I remember a few years ago attendeding a presentation on marriage at a nearby university. The class subject matter focused on increasing the LOVE in your relationships. Little did I know the love lesson I'd learned that day would stick in my mind forever. 

My friend and I found two open seats near the front of the classroom. Within minutes, the room filled with eager students, ranging from ages 18 to 75. The instructor explained how three Greek words defined the most important word in the English language—L-O-V-E. 

The instructor explained that . . . 

“Eros is the romantic kind of love.” 

“Philos is brotherly kind of love, like the deep love you have for family members and close friends. “

“Agape love is god-like love. The unconditional, giving, serving, and sacrificing kind of love.” 

Interestingly enough, as the instructor began describing eros, I spotted a young couple (very young) across the room, sitting near the exit. They couldn’t keep their hands off each other! I watched them and thought, “Ah, ha! Eros in action.” Believe me, there was action. Fingers through the hair, back rubs, shoulder rubs, and arm tickles. For an entire fifty minutes, the strawberry blonde and her bronzed boyfriend were obviously engaged in eros. I guess you could say they were a very effective visual aid. 

Next, the instructor introduced philos as a bonding kind of love that is endearing, a love where you have another person’s best interest at heart. I looked around the room and then saw sitting to the right of me looked like a mom and daughter. They were linked arm in arm. The dark haired one looked like a younger version of the gray-haired one. They seemed very close, and at one point during the lecture, the daughter pulled out a granola bar, split it half, and gave a piece of it to her mother. 

“Okay,” I thought. There is philos love in action.” Again, another great visual aid.

Next, the instructor introduced agape love. Now, keep in mind, I’d been attending classes throughout that day. My rear end felt numb and my mind was starting to wander. When I the instructor explained agape love as God-like love, an unconditional love that forgives and endures. He added that it was a love that couldn’t be shaken or altered no matter what happens, and how it could be likened to the fullness of God's love. 

Jokingly, I thought to myself there would be no visual aid for agape. 

But then it happened. Just as I would reach into my backpack for a protein bar, I spotted the elderly couple sitting in front of me. A gray-haired man and a gray-haired woman, whom I guessed were married and maybe in their 70s. I took a bite of my bar and watched as the man pulled up the wife’s knitted sweater over her shoulders. 

How sweet, I thought. 

Then, without warning, a long, loud, bodily sound, accompanied by a gassy smell emerged from what I could only assume to be was the gray-haired woman's back side. Make no mistake. It was loud and noxious. 

Could you imagine what it must of have felt like to be her in a room full of silent students. She had tooted and everyone sitting in the near vicinity of her knew it. We heard it AND we could smell it. I shifted in my chair, feeling her pain and shame while at the same time feeling gratitude that it wasn't me. (Does that count as philos love by the way? Probably not.) 

The next thing though was touching. This woman’s husband slowly stretched his left arm around her and lovingly patted her knee with his right hand. He even pulled her a bit closer towards him, as if to say, "Sweetheart. Dear. Love of my life. It's perfectly fine what just happened. I am here for you and I love you, no matter what." 

“Ah! Agape!” I had witnessed it in action! I whispered to my friend. "Did you see that? THAT’S AGAPE!” The two of us couldn't help but giggle. I could honestly say LOVE WAS IN THE AIR! 

So, to the affectionate couple, the mother and daughter duo, and the eloving couple who attended that class on ethos, philos, and agape love, I thank you. You know, I can’t remember the instructor's name or the name of the class, but thanks to those three couples I had love lessons never to be forgotten. 

Here's to Summer Lovin'! 

-Jodi 

#summerlovinwithtlr

(Pic above: courtesty of publicdomain.net.)


Jodi Robinson is a mother of four and dog lover of her 80 pound malamute, Yuki.  She is an author, speaker, and mentor women in addiction recovery and is also a certified mentor of the "Jonny Covey's Five Habits of the Heart" and enjoys sharing a message of hope and healing to women of all ages and stages of life.  Contact her at jodimarierobinson@gmail.com.  Her website for service ideas is www.shareloveserve.com.   

(Picture of couple: courtesty of publicdomain.net.)

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Mothers and Daughers

About this show:

There is something special between a mother and a daughter. Our greatest memories, biggest fights, best learning moments, head-butting, love, sorrow and mother bear tendencies are all a part of raising or being a daughter. Perhaps one of the most profound experiences of Mother/Daughter relationships, is having a mother evolve from a parent to a friend. There is nothing quite like the experience of growing older and having children of our own to help us truly understand why our mother's did what they did, the sacrifices the made and especially the acute love they felt for us.  Today we'll interview a single mother of three as well as a mother of ten. We'll ask questions and find out what motherhood was like from two of our very own mothers. Special guests: Connie Rose (Kate's mom) and Jane Bell Axson Flynn Juber Meyer (Christie's mom). 

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-05-03.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback! If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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Every Woman a Nurturer

About this show:

We've all heard the common phrase, ""It takes a village"" in reference to the raising up of the African proverb. This is true. Parents need the help and support of the entire community as we seek to raise valued children who contribute in our communities. Join us as we discuss Unconventional Mothering and a woman's inherent and instinctive need to nurture.  We talk about women who for various reasons aren't mothers in the traditional sense of the word...what is your role in raising children. As well as how we can support Parents as they raise children and how those of us who are parents can support you? Every woman is a nurturer.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-05-10.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback! If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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Raising Strong Daughters

About this show:

Research shows us that our girls come strong and confident but
around the age of 9 or 10 things start to take a downward turn for
their self esteem and body image. Why? Because it is then that society
stops focusing on ABILITIES and starts focusing on APPEARANCE. Yikes!
This takes them into the preteen and teen years with a lower belief in
themselves. Feelings of inferiority abound and if not nipped in the
bud, things just get worse and worse. So what can we do? Listen as we
share 8 tips research shows will help us raise strong daugthers.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-05-17.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback! If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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Frugal Chic

About this show:

Whether you are in a financial feast or famine, finding a good deal is always fun and can fuel your creative side.  Join us as we discuss ways to upcycle, find deals, and maximize your dollars.  Saving money and being creative has never looked so chic.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-04-26.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback! If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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Why Does Money Matter?

About this show:

Money contains a remarkable power. How we define its power affects our self-esteem, our choices, and our relationships. What kind of a relationship do YOU have with money? And what could you do better to manage your money--your power? Join our LIVING ROOM discussion, “Why Money Matters” and discover tips and take-aways you can use to improve your relationship with money. Save more. Spend less. Find contentment in imagining your financial future.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-04-19.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback! If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

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Why Do You Hate Mother's Day?

I've wanted to say something today and I couldn't put my finger on it or vocalize it well.
In the bible we read in John about Jesus Christ's first recorded miracle: The Wedding in Cana. They run out of wine at the wedding feast and Mary approaches Jesus to say, they're out of wine. Jesus responds "Woman, what have I to do with thee? Mine hour is not yet come." Then Mary goes to the servants and tells them to do whatever he asks. The story goes on to say that he tells them to fill the wine jugs with water and he turns it to wine.
While reading this story last year, I was deeply touched by the significance of his mother. She knew what he could do-even when he didn't think his time had yet come. Immediately I was overwhelmed with the thought that Mary was the perfect mother for Jesus. And then understood on a deep, deep level that my mother was the perfect mother for me.
My mother is the most amazing woman on the planet. Raised four kids on her own. When she and my father divorced she had four kids under the age of 8. She packed us up. Found a job and provided for our needs and wants without complaining. She taught us about happiness despite trials and to have faith always. I'll never forget that she said, "Do everything you can do and God will make up the difference." Like any mother/daughter relationship we had our hard times. I had a spell as a teenager where I'm sure she thought she wouldn't survive. But she didn't give up on me. As I've grown we've grown closer and now that I'm a mother I appreciate her so much more. There were times I was distant because of things I didn't understand, but she always remained close and ready. She's the perfect mother for me.

Just as your mother is the perfect mother for you. Good or bad, our mothers shape us. I spoke at a women's religious group this week and a group of sisters expressed their unfortunate upbringing from a less than caring mother. To that I say, she was yours to make you stronger. To see who you don't want to be, to make YOU the best woman you can be-despite your upbringing. It's amazing what this story has taught me about owning who are mothers are.

This year while at dinner my son had a gargantuan tantrum. Tensions were high in the whole family as I tried to patiently deal with the circumstances. A wave of emotion washed over me as that bible story came to my mind. I was chosen for him. Just as Mary was chosen as the mother of Jesus, I was chosen for this boy. I can hand this and every other experience that's thrown my way. I won't be perfect. I'll make mistakes. I'll have to apologize and yet that's all part of the process too. What goes right and how I fix what goes wrong is what matters in my motherhood to my children. I was picked for them.

Mother's Day is hard for some. I've had a fair share of Mother's Days that I loathed. The mother's days where I didn't feel connected to my mom in a way I would have liked. The days where I longed for a child and didn't have one despite the righteous desires of my heart, the Mother's Days where I felt less than and inadequate and didn't deserve the attention and the Mother's Days where I expected too much and then I felt let down because I was misguided on what this day should be.

Whether you welcome the day or hate it, I stand to celebrate the mothers that have been, the mothers that are and the mothers that will be. This is an important work. A hard work and as women, we get to own the all places God has planted us at this time. We were meant to be here. In these neighborhoods. In these families. In these homes. May we fulfill that responsibility that God has placed on us and accept His hand as we do it.

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals. Find out more about Michelle at her website, SpeakMichelle.com

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Co-host Michelle Keynotes at Upcoming Conference

 

EHC




















I have been invited to give a keynote to 1,400 business people this June. It’s my first time keynoting at this event! I’m excited to speak alongside fellow speaking friends Kevin Hall, David Blanchard and some other power house speakers. It’s a really niche group, but I wanted to share it with you to see if you or someone you know is a good fit.
This event is for:
– Holistic Coaches
– Massage Therapists
– Energy Workers
– Yoga Instructors
– etc.
If you’re growing a business like this, this event is for you!
I keynote on June 15th and I have presentations on June 16th and June 17th as well.
What surprised me about the packed line-up and incredible speakers is that the cost is SO low, under $99! Early bird pricing is only $75 until May 25th! (I have never attended or spoken at a 3 day conference that was that accessible!)
If you know someone that could benefit from an event like this, please share!

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals. Find out more about Michelle at her website, SpeakMichelle.com

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On the Eve of Our Daughter's Wedding



A little over 21 years ago, the toughest pregnancy followed by the easiest delivery brought us a creature I could only describe as pure grace. “A baby girl has graced our home,” her birth announcement said, followed by a Wordsworth quote: “Heaven lies about us in our infancy.

A baby girl did indeed grace our home. The spirit she brought with her was bright and tangible, like rays of hope from heaven. As she continued to grow, the grace has also grown along with her.

The two-year-old who was so attached to clothes she insisted on wearing the same purple dress every single day is now—amazingly—perfectly content borrowing someone else’s gown for her special day.

The three-year-old who declared herself a princess, and used to wear a tiara around the house…now doesn’t need a crown to prove her worth. She is an entirely different kind of princess now, the kind with no sense of entitlement, who understands her divine roots and digs deep to have a relationship with her heavenly King.

The four-year-old who would fold her arms and say, “You can’t dance with me at my wedding” when she was angry at Jeff…is now planning that very dance with her dad, and has never even hinted at disinviting him! They have a sweet connection and a strong relationship.

The stubborn kindergartener who suffered the tremendous loss of her longed-for baby sister became the compassionate and ever-inclusive seventh grader who was a friend to all, inviting so many girls to her birthday party we had to scramble to enlist enough grown-ups to chauffeur everyone to dinner. She worked babysitting for four straight months to pay her off half of the expenses, and said it was totally worth it.

The toothless six-year-old who couldn’t say her S and T sounds but loved all things glitter and sparkle would coo, “Loot, it’s all fartley!” (Translation: Look! It’s all Sparkly!) Now she doesn’t need an ounce of glitter to adorn her gown because her eyes and her smile, warmed from within, far out-sparkle any other form of bling you could add.

The seven-year-old who ran to the car, enchanted that her new school had “Special Occasions”—her term for a program known as Special Education—later enrolled herself in Special Ed Seminary to assist more “special occasions”, and is now majoring in Special Ed, with the same enthusiasm, love, and admiration continuing to inform her work.

The eight-year-old who donned a white dress (hand-made by my sister Emily) as a symbol of purity when she entered the waters of baptism…will tomorrow be donning another white dress and another symbol of purity as she enters the beautiful Provo City Center Temple to make yet another lasting promise to God—this time to give herself to a wonderful young man, Austin Hollan.

Part of me wants to say, “now wait a minute…that baby girl is mine!” But I’ve known all along that she’s not really mine, and never has been. She’s on loan from the firmament through a ceiling of stars to our home and our family—and now she’s ready to create a family of her own. While we felt heaven lie about her in her infancy, we feel heaven dancing and rejoicing about tomorrow’s events. What a blessing and a privilege to have had her in our home for the past 21 years!

Austin, this girl is going to continue to grace your home, and together, that grace will continue to grow and grow. I love the forms of grace you have already brought to our home and family: Your patience, your easy-going nature, your gift for conversation and shooting the breeze, and your ability to defuse tense situations (except at Mens Wearhouse!) I love the way you treat Jordan, how free and generous you are with your praise, and the grace you extend me in the face of my flaws. You are every bit her equal and we feel truly honored to have you joining our family.

Thank you for recognizing all that is wonderful about Jordan and having the courage and confidence to make her yours—thereby making all the events of tomorrow possible. Jordan, thank you for saying YES and not letting Austin get away. He is a rare find and a great addition to the Parkin clan. It's easy to make room for him in our family! We love you both forever and ever.

#livingroomwithjana #makingroom

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art instructor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at  divergent pathways and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Be Unoffendable

About this show:

In a world where everyone can share their opinion (and often does) it can be so easy to get our feelings hurt or worse; we can become offended. Today, we discuss how to be unoffendable - even if you feel you have been wronged on purpose. 

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-04-12.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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Withdrawal

Last week I withdrew our youngest child from high school. It nearly took my breath away when I realized I did the exact same thing on almost the exact same day seven years ago with our oldest child. But the reasons couldn’t be more different.

I sat in a chair across from our son’s high school counselor, discussing options for withdrawing him for the rest of the semester for a study abroad program in London.

Suddenly I was haunted by flashbacks when nine years ago I withdrew our oldest son from the same school on almost the same day.

Then, although the halls were filled with students, I felt like I was walking through a ghost down, knowing our son would never return to this place. I asked his teachers to sign the withdrawal forms, realizing that while many mourned his absence, some barely knew he existed. He was already on his way to a wilderness survival program, followed by 13 months in a residential boarding school, in an effort to stop a drug addiction.*

Just a few hours earlier, in the pre-dawn hours of the morning, two large men in jeans and cowboy boots had arrived at our front door, come down to his room, and taken him away in their truck. “Escorts,” was their euphemistic title. They were taking our son to the middle of nowhere, to live in the great outdoors and learn some lessons about life and himself that no one can teach better than Mother Nature herself. Although my husband and I had arranged this parting, actually seeing your son ripped from your home creates a pain in a parent’s heart that is indescribable.

Every day I checked the weather report for Loa, Utah to see what conditions our son was living in, braving, out of our reach. Every week we looked for a hand-written letter from him, along with a note from his counselor updating us on his progress. Every week we sent letters of our own. Letters outlining the impact of his choices on our family. Letters reassuring him of our unconditional love. His letters gradually became less angry, more progress-oriented—even grateful. His letters also expressed love. I was amazed at how much healing could take place through mere words.

Two months later we drove to Loa in our Honda Pilot to pick up our son. After a day of workshops, they drove us to a meeting place, pointed to a trail and said, “Your boys are just on the other side of that hill.” We started walking, then as soon as we saw him broke into a run. I threw my arms around him and sobbed tears of joy.

    But when he was yet a [little] way off, [we] saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. (Luke 15:20)

My arms would not, could not let go of him, and my chest would not stop heaving up and down as I sobbed my love and gratitude right onto his shoulder.

The angry boy with a foul mouth and darkness in his eyes had become someone I barely knew by the time he left our home. The bright, creative, sensitive young man who greeted us, cooked our meals, and built us a shelter was the boy I knew well. He’d been hiding behind a cloak of drugs, but all that was gone, and we could see him for who he truly was. He had finally come to himself, as well as come back to us.


One thing I know is that when a boy leaves school, no matter the circumstances, he is opening a door to change. I can hardly wait to see what two months studying in London does for our second son.I left the counselor’s office with a fistful of papers and a hopeful heart.

 

*For more on our addiction story, I highly recommend our podcast, "Hope, Healing and Support Through Addiction" bit.ly/TLRshow26

#livingroomwithjana #makingroom

 

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art instructor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at  divergent pathways and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Creating Soul-Satisfying Friendships

About this show:

Come away with ideas for creating meaningful and lasting friendships. Feel bold and brave enough to create NEW friendships, to see new people as potential friends. We share personal experiences and offer ideas about how to sustain REAL, GEUINE, and LASTING friendships, along with reserach that shows how to keep friendships healthy. We also discuss conflict in friendship, privacy and boundaries with friends and setting an example for our children of how to be a good friend. 

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-03-29.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

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Tips for Showing Respect To Our Grandparents

My entire life I have had the opportunity to be around elderly people. Not just my grandparents, but I also grew up with a set of great grand parents who were around until I was a junior in college! On top of that I have had neighbors, my parent's friends, my grandparent's friends, and even random associates that have flooded my life with wisdom and friendship.

I don't think my parents necessarily knew that my life would be filled with wonderful people so much older than me. And yet, they taught me how to be around them, talk to them, feel comfortable around them, respect them, and most important, serve them. 

They taught me that it is our job to turn around and help make their golden years, GLOW! Our job.

How can we better show respect to our grandparents? Here are a few tips. 

1. Realize that like Betty Friedan said "Aging is not lost youth, but a new stage of opportunity and strength." Not just for them, but for us too!

2. Empathize with them. It can be easy to be impatient with our grandparent/s frustration and moodiness. Sometimes they can even be mean. Aging is a series of losses and we need to step back and consider how it would feel to be in their situation.

3. Call them regularly. Research shows that more than anything, aging family members want to hear from their family. Conversations don't have to be long. Reach out, inquire about their day, share with them what is going on in your life and keep them apart of the conversation. You will quickly see that they have so much wisdom, their advice will make your life better.

4. Foresee problems and needs. Grandparents worry. They worry because there starts to be lots of things they can't do. It becomes hard for them to take care of themselves and their homes and do the things that need to be done. Their minds are often still running, but their bodies can't keep up. Not to mention, things are still moving quickly around them and it can be hard to understand insurance and appointments and all that needs to be taken care of. Don't let the stress take over. You know that their oil needs changed, take care of things, so they don't have to worry. Trips to the dentist, calling insurance companies, even changing batteries in smoke detectors. Foresee the needs and take care of them in advance! It will take away worry and that will also help take away orneriness! How? Well, I keep a calendar of dates, appointments and deadlines for my grandma. Then I know when things are coming up and can help. (Remember to help a little sooner than you think, grandparents work on different schedules than we do). The second thing I do is whenever I do something for our family, I do it for them also. Change batteries in smoke detectors at our house and theirs. Take out the trash at our house, take it out at theirs. Grocery shop, see if they need anything. Think ahead for them!

5. Provide a purpose. Our grandparents know a lot. A whole lot. They have experiences and understanding that we don't have. And now, they are alone and no one cares. Not to mention, their purpose has moved out and moved on. Time to care. Ask them how to do things, ask them opinions, ask them what they did when they were young. Give them something to live for. My grandmother teaches our children piano. They will not become Mozart, but they are learning and more important, my grandmother lives for Tuesdays. Literally. They play the piano for 30 minutes and then they learn about everything from World War 2, to planting and growing tomatoes. And. they. love it. And so does she. She is asked to teach lessons when we get together on Monday's and we all love it when my grandma brings her famous caramel corn to our weekly family gatherings. She has told me that when she feels needed, it gives her a reason to live.

There are other things we can do, but focusing on these will help our grandparents feel respected and loved. And as we serve them we will come to love them more than we ever thought we could.
-Heather
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Honoring Previous Generations

About this show:

As our lives and families become busier, it is easy to forget to look back at those family members who have come before us. The grandparents that have sacrificed for us, taught us, and loved us, are aging and now alone. We don't often consider that it is our privilege to help their golden years glow. Today, we talk about why grandparents are important and the powerful ways we can support and love them. The best part is the love and joy that we will feel as we learn from these amazing men and women in our families.  They truly can help further shape and bless our lives!  

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-03-22.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote(s) for this Show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

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Healing Generational Baggage

About this show:

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-03-15.mp3?type=podpage

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-03-08.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote for this Show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

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TV Segment on Fox 13 The Place with Co-Host Michelle McCullough

Co-host Michelle McCullough was featured on Fox 13s The Place last week.  This segment is a great introduction to what The Living Room is all about.

Check it out here:

http://fox13now.com/2016/03/18/give-yourself-some-living-room-when-life-gets-busy/

 

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Unpack Your Rocks -- Emotional Healing

To heal emotional baggage, here is something I do.  I imagine carrying around a backpack full of rocks. One by one, I imagine taking out each rock and examining it.  I ask myself if I want to continue carrying that rock.  I ask why I'm choosing to still carry it.  What purpose it serves?  Then I ask if I'm truly ready to let go it go.  I then consider the extra weight that rock adds to my pack and name the ways it could be holding me back from enjoying certain aspects of my life.      

 

A few months ago, I chose to examine a rock I had been carrying for a long time.  For months, I had worked hard emotionally and spiritually to even dare take that particular rock out of my pack.  I spent months examining my rock, honestly, from all angles. 

 

I'd be dishonest if I said there weren't times I had begged God to let me hang onto that rock, because it had become a part of me.  That rock defined a piece of me, and truthfully I even had to ask what would I do without it?  

 

Once I recognized that rock was holding me back and I felt ready to let go of the unnecessary weight it was adding to my pack, true healing could begin. 

 

The time had come to finally let it go.  So, I began imagining what my pack would look like and feel if I no longer had to carry around that rock.  I promised myself once I tossed that rock away I would no longer use it as a defense or protection mechanism.  I knew once I gave it away it would need to gone for good.     

 

I remember the moment I could finally say to my higher power, "I don't want to carry this rock anymore.  Pleeeeeease... take it from me.  I'm ready to be free of it." 

 

An instantaneous peace and relief washed over me.  But, don't get me wrong, because I had worked hard for MONTHS to take that rock out of my pack.  My higher power couldn't take it out from me--not until I had done my part. 

 

I had to take it out.

 

I had to examine it.

 

I had to learn from it. 

 

My experience in healing emotional baggage was not a quick-fix-on-my-knees-over-in-a-second kind of experience.  In fact, if you count all the times I'd tried to let my rock go, in previous years, only to sneak it back into my pack, for what I thought were good reasons, well, then my healing process was years in the making. 

 

Remember. 

 

True healing is never a quick fix.  It takes time.  Often, it takes partnering with a higher power and even a good therapist. 

After I'd done my discovery work, only then, could I hand my rock over, in good conscience and good faith, and allow my heart to feel the amazing grace and mercy of someone greater than I who carries all the rocks of every human being ever to live, die, and be reborn.   

 

I've believe knowing why we carry your rocks is just as important as letting them go.  It felt peaceful knowing I had done my part in understanding why I had chosen to carry that rock in the first place.  I had also done the work to choose to hand it over to a power greater than myself, who could lift that rock out of my pack for good.  That's when the peace came and it has stayed. 

 

Sometimes the rocks we carry are too heavy to release rocks by ourselves.  The good news is there are those wiser than we are who can help us understand why we choose to carry our rocks (our emotional baggage, if you will) and teach us how we can let them go. 

 

The truth is we all carry emotional backpacks.  We pick up rocks, because of our life experiences, and place them inside our packs and don't unpack them often enough so they become burdensome and hurtful to us and others.  Some rocks we carry in our packs placed in our packs by the poor choices of others.  Some rocks we carry because of choices we've made.  No matter the reasons we carry our rocks we can learn to release them. 

 

When you CHOOSE to heal from emotional baggage the sky looks bluer.  The sun shines brighter.  Healing makes every aspect of your life come alive and seem richer and fuller! 

 

If you're carrying extra weight in your pack, ask yourself if you're ready to unpack your pack.  Be willing to do the work needed to lighten your load.  I promise the journey, no matter how many times you must make it, it will be worth it.  :)) 

 

JOIN JODI:  If you're on a journey of healing and you're interested in my "Ruby Heart" workshop where I teach Johnny Covey's "5 Habits of the Heart and Head-to-Heart Framework", email me at jodimarierobinson (at) gmail (dot) com.  I do one-one visits, small groups, and also give presentations.  Powerful healing can come through learning this simple training.  I use it every day. Here's to YOUR healing! 

 

With love and friendship,

 

 -Jodi

#livingroomwithjodi

Jodi is the author of "Precious in His Sight", "A Royal Guardian", and various essays published by Covenant Communications.  She is a presenter and certified mentor of Johnny Covey's NEW "5 Habits of the Heart:  Head to Heart Framework."  For more information about her presentations and home workshops email her at jodimarierobinson(at)gmail.(com).  Jodi has mentored women recovering from addiction for 14 years.  She enjoys snowmobilling and the out-of-doors with her family, hiking and walking her 85-pound malamute, and is content leaving dishes in the sink if it means she has a new book to read, or something meaningul to write.    

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Creating YOUR Ideal Marriage

About this show:

With "traditional" marriage getting challenged at every turn, AND with more and more people choosing not to get married, we want to explore the question, "What is an ideal marriage?" The truth is the longer you search for ideal you won't find it. The question you SHOULD ask yourself is "What is the right marriage for US?" What works for one couple, will crash and burn with another. Being willing to find creative solutions and have win-win conversations with your spouse will help you create a powerful and lasting marriage.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2016-03-08.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote for this Show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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How to be a FUN Mom

It is a well known fact in our house that my husband is more fun than me. He just is. When he comes home from work and is with the kids, he is fun. Bedtime is filled with extra stories and games of hide-and-go seek, and wrestling and pillowfights.

Not with me, I am all business. I have been with the kids all day and by bedtime, I am not thinking, "let's play". I am thinking about what has to be done and how fast we can do it. After all, once they are in bed, I still have a hundred million things to do. 

I say "let's clean up", my husband say's "Nah, it can wait." I say "you need to eat more dinner", he says "two bits are good". 

So naturally you can see why he is deemed the fun one. Not to mention that one day our little girl looked at me and "informed" me that she was sorry, "daddy was just more fun."

It was that day, after the conversation with our daughter, that I decided I was ready to be less stiff and more fun. I decided that even though my personality leant itself to more structure and less chaos, that I wanted and needed to be more fun.

Do you ever find yourself in this position? Needing to be more fun? Well look no farther. CLICK HERE for my tips for more fun and less frump. Simple things we can all do to earn the title of a "FUN MOM"!

-Heather

#livingroomwithheather

#motherhood

#funmom

#giveyourselfsomelivingroom

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Memory Keeping Possibilities

About this show:

The key to successful memory keeping is all about doing one thing -- actually keeping them. With hundreds of memory keeping options out there -- from digital programs and phone apps to amazing paper layouts -- you may wonder where to begin? Does the of recording your family history overwhelm you? Does thinking about scrapbooking seem silly because you're 20 years behind? The Living Room is here to help! Whether it's choosing a scrapbooking program, starting a journal, family history, or doing genealogy, what matters is finding a system that WORKS. So, for all you frustrated MEMORY KEEPERS who drool over the clever and beautiful Pinterest layouts, we're here to help!. We'll share how we approach memory keeping and hopefully inspire you to find a system that works for you.  

Download this Show: 

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

Quote for this show:

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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You are here to kneel.

A few years ago my daughter and I embarked on a challenge to say meaningful prayers both morning and evening. What I found most humbling about this experience (which at first seemed so basic and de rigeur  there could almost BE no challenge) was that as soon as I put my mind to it, committing and focusing on daily morning and evening prayers, I felt the adversary launch a deliberate attack. I found things getting in the way. I found myself pressed for time, running late. And as much as I hate to admit it, I occasionally found myself not wanting to pray, looking for an excuse or a way out...which is strange. I have always loved prayer, clung to prayer, trusted in prayer. Prayer is the most consistent habit of my spiritual life.

The good news is I fought back, largely because of my commitment to do this and stick to it, because I said I would. (There's probably a lesson in that sentence alone...something about the power of promises, perhaps?) 

One thing that helped me was a thought from my blogger friend Jessica Stock a couple of years ago. She talked about all of the times as a mother she finds herself on her knees, and decided to make each one an opportunity for prayer. So I did exactly that. Not only did I pray morning and night, I also prayed each time I scrubbed a floor, searched for a lost shoe, etc. 

The best thing that came out of this for me was that I pulled out of whatever funk I was in, felt reconnected to God, and conquered the opposition. In the end, I found that I was back where I'd been before, with my desire to pray renewed, because I wanted to talk with my Heavenly Father and be closer to him. I learned that having made a commitment helped me through a dry spell I never could have anticipated. I came away both humbler and stronger.

When I was in college, I took a break from art school and spent a summer at Cambridge University studying English literature. One of the life-changing discoveries I made there (and there were many!) was T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets. During that same semester we were touring houses and parishes of the English countryside, and one day touring a parish I stumbled onto this dark prayer alcove off one of the tiny chapels. There was nothing in the room but a small prayer bench under a leaded-glass window. As I stepped into the alcove, I noticed a stream of light pouring through the window, flooding the bench with sunlight, like rays of heaven, and thought of this quote from the Four Quartets:

 

    You are not here to verify,

    Instruct yourself, or inform curiosity

    Or carry report. You are here to kneel

    Where prayer has been valid. 

 

So whenever I find myself in a quiet chapel (of any faith or denomination) I remember that I am first and foremost in a sacred space, and try to take time to kneel. Kneeling invites light. I want more light in my life. I try to see every task that brings me to my knees (talking to a child, wiping up a spill on the floor, searching for a lost key), in addition to more formal prayers, as an opportunity to kneel...where prayer has been valid.

***

For related content on this topic, check out this article I wrote on prayer: http://familyshare.com/faith/does-prayer-work
And my favorite of our early shows on seeking greater connnection with the divine: Post-it Notes from God. TLR8: Post-it Notes from God

#livingroomwithjana

#tiesthatbind

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art instructor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at  divergent pathways and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

 

 

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The Process of Forgiveness

 

About this Show:

Is forgiveness an attribute or something you attain?  Is it easy?  Is it quick?  Is it definable? In this episode of The Living Room, each host will share her own experience with forgiveness.  Join us as we explore the journey of forgiveness and why we believe that forgiveness is the most powerful gift that one can give...to themselves.

Download this Show: 

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

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Hindsight is 20/20 - Advice I'd Give My Younger Self

Earlier this month, we had a show called "What I'd Tell My Younger Self"  

If you missed it you can download it (using any computer or mobile device) here or listen on iTunes here.

Since that show, I've thought a lot about what I WISH I would have done.  I thought of additional advice I'd tell msyelf or any current teenager would listen to.  Though there has been a number of thoughts running through my head, I'm going to narrow it down to 5 things.

1. Fail faster. Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Do the best you can, but when mistakes happen, learn and grow from them.  And, while we're at it, don't internalize them.  Your past failures don't mean you create a new future!
2. Enjoy being a kid and a teenager. You have the rest of your life to be an adult.  I enjoyed college and high school A LOT.  That said, I can see the areas in my life where I was so excited to be independent and "adult" that I missed some opportunitys to play a little more.
3. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Independence is good, but be willing to learn from others and realize when you don't have to go it alone.  And it doesn't make you weak if you need to ask questions, it proves that you're moldable and willing to learn.
4. Don't let fear hold you back. Do it. I know this is easier said than done, but I've learned a powerful truth in my life: Regret feels worse than failure.  There are a lot of things I DIDN'T do because I was scared and I missed some pretty cool opportunities.  If you ask yourself, but what if I make a mistake?  What if I fail?  Refer to number 1 above! ;)
5. Find your favorite forms of exercise before your body totally revolts and doesn't want to do any of them...Ha!

I'd love to hear, what would you tell YOUR younger self.  Share with us on Facebook!

-Michelle

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals. Find out more about Michelle at her website, SpeakMichelle.com

 

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Weddings: From Blunders to Bliss

About this Show:

Nearly every bride has something go horribly wrong at her wedding...and with so many details involved, it's no wonder! Most of these mishaps are hilarious—after the fact! Join us for a good laugh as we recount some of our wedding day disasters, and share some of your own with us on facebook! The good news is, in the long run, none of those little details matter at all! What's most important is a lifetime commitment to love, honor and support the man of your dreams. And that promise contains pure bliss!

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


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Never, Never Give Up -- A Lesson in Forgiveness

Never, never give up!  Sounds easy enough but never giving up can be really hard.

For more than a decade, I’ve taught motivational and life skills classes to women recovering from addiction.  I use Mother Teresa as an example of a woman who has learned to overcome hard things.  She was a poor and simple woman who believed if you can't feed a hundred than you just feed one.  Her worn, and wrinkly hands, by the end of her life, were all used up in doing good.  After she passed away, books were written about her, and, in them, readers discovered her darker side; a side that made me love her even more. 

Mother Teresa experienced depression and doubt.  In her journals, she expressed feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, and fear. To me, her loveliness became all the more apparent, because her humanitarianism was illuminated by her humanness!

Despite her adversities, she had, somewhere on her life’s journey, made a choice to keep on loving others and to never, never give up!

For Valentine’s Day, I gave a mother and a daughter a special gift.  I gave them each a pendant engraved with the words NEVER, NEVER GIVE UP.  I keep fifty or so of these pendants on hand, so that, at a moment’s notice, I can give one to a woman in recovery, or anyone struggling to find a light spark in a dark space.  

I’ve experienced how hard addiction can be by watching those who suffer from it and because of it.  Currently, I’m working with a mom who suffers from addiction, and a daughter who suffers because of it.  To me, the beauty of their story is that they both keep trying to make life better.  They both continue moving forward, even when they take ten steps back. 

They’ve chosen to never give up.    

The daughter has had this never-give-up spirit since I first met her six years ago.  She’s had some of the saddest life experiences I’ve known, and, yet, her heart never gives up.  Our family started reaching out to her when she was in fifth grade.  She responded to our reaching out by reaching back.  We loved her.  She loved our family.  Thus a beautiful relationship was formed.  But, the key to loving this sweet girl has been allowing her to see and understand her love for her mother.  I can see how much she loves her mother, and, yet, her mother has been, at times, the reason why she has suffered.  Her suffering, at times, has made me angry, frustrated, even to the point of wanting to give up.  But, the daughter: she keeps teaching me that I must never give up.  She’s teaching me that if she can forgive, than so must I. 

I’ve struggled sometimes, knowing she’s been hurt, wanting to fix everything.  And, yet, her natural love for the woman who gave birth to her somehow gives her a more-than-human ability to want to forgive her mother.  Her eagerness to want to try again and again to create a relationship with her mother inspires me.  Because of her determination to never give up this 16-year-old girl has become one of my greatest teachers. 

Here, I'm a teacher and mentor to women recovering from addiction.  And, yet, this young woman’s big heart has taught me.  She has a willingness to forgive and lto allow her mother try again.  This beautiful girl sees her own addict mother as being worthy of love, happiness, and forgiveness.  She’s taught me that I must choose to love with the same determination to forgive. She's taught me that forgiveness is about seeing possibility instead of impossibility.    

Like Mother Teresa, who kept feeding people, this beautiful daughter of God keeps loving her mother and encourages her to never give up!   

Picture in your mind Mother Teresa’s worn and wrinkly hands.  Now, imagine your hands reaching out and feeding a hungry soul—someone who needs to be reminded they’re worth loving.  In my mind, I picture this girl and I picture her bronzed, hands being placed on her mother’s cheeks, softly and lovingly.  And I feel amazing! 

We’re all worthy of love. 

No matter what.

And we should encourage one another to NEVER, EVER GIVE UP. 

 

---------------

Jodi is a mother, author, and presenter, and is a certified instructor/mentor for JOHNNY COVEY'S NEW book, due out in June 2016.  She teaches Johnny Covey’s "head to heart frame work and the five habits of the heart"—a delivery system for life-change that truly changes lives.    

For information on Jodi Robinson's presentations, or one-on-one mentoring, email her.

‪#nevergiveup

#livingroomwithjodi

Jodimarierobinson (at) Gmail (dot) com

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Love at First Sight- Revive Your Heart with a new adventure!

Love at First Sight

It was dark and raining the first time I saw it.  And there, standing in the rain, late in the winter night, I fell in love. 

We’d been driving all day. Mile by mile we drove through three states, a few middle sized cities, one big city and finally through the forest.  I’d never seen the Pacific Northwest Mossy trees (that’s what I call them) as they were that night.  The coast had sustained one of the biggest snowstorms they’d had in recent memory.  (Although to a girl from Utah, the shock at a couple of inches of snow was a little comical.  We’d dug ourselves out of two feet of powder in our driveway that morning just to make the trip.)  But it was a sight to see: trees whose branches sunk under the weight of untouched snow, connected to each other by swaths of moss hanging with ice crystals that sparkled in the headlights.  It was like Currier and Ives meets Dr. Seuss.  Magical.  We were meeting the real estate agent in the morning, the kids were done with driving, and we were famished.  There were so many reasons not to stop.  But we would be driving right past it!  We HAD to stop.  When we were ten miles away I started to get the giggles and count down the miles. 

We saw the “for sale” sign before we saw the house, which is itself tucked into a group of trees that started growing there before anyone on this Earth was born.  The anticipation had risen from the tips of my toes and was spilling out the corners of my eyes.  We turned into the drive and there it was.  We’d been looking at it online for 168 days.  There were others too, but there was something about this one.  I opened the door and the first thing that came over me was the smell.  The rain had sopped the earth and awakened the smell of living.  It was pine and fresh. 

Doug and I pressed our faces in the criss-crossed wavy 1935 glass paned windows, eager to get a look.  In the dark we ran around the property.  Alder Creek (although we didn’t know that was its name) was bubbling in the back yard.  The rain poured down and Doug and I shared a quick kiss on the back deck…those ancient trees I love so much our only witnesses.

I guess you could say it was love at first sight.  

This month on The Living Room we are talking about Reviving Your Heart (#reviveyourheartwithtlr).  It’s been an interesting season in our family.  Lots of peaks and valleys.  Or, I guess I should say, looking back at old valleys from new peaks.  We were really in need of a way to revive our hearts.  And so, we, in all our middle income glory, bought a beach cottage as an investment property!  Yes, we’re venturing into the Vacation Rental Industry.  It’s a risk and it’s exciting and I hope it works.  There’s a lot of fear, but I love the quote by our co-host Michelle that says “Regret feels worse than failure.”  So here we go!

We’ve been dreaming about this for fifteen years.  It was 2001 when Doug, my husband, and I first stood on the beach of the Pacific Northwest and dreamed of someday having a place somewhere along the coast.  We have precious memories and ties to the Coast both together and apart.  Something about my soul belongs there.  We dreamed this up as newlyweds.  Then we blinked and a decade-and-a-half had passed.  We have a daughter who will be all grown up in five years!  It was important to me that we have a place we go to make memories.

You guys, I can’t wait.

I can’t wait to dig our toes into the sand and let the waves swallow our feet.  I can’t wait to play games at the kitchen table.  I can’t wait to barbecue on the back deck.  I can’t wait to hike Saddle Mountain.  I can’t wait to hear my children tell their children about the time we spent at the beach in Oregon and the memories we will forever keep.

If you’d like to follow our journey…ahem…laugh at us as we make mistakes), or if you find yourself wanting to experience the magic of the Oregon Coast yourself, you can watch our progress at http://www.facebook.com/saddlemountaincottage !

Live YOUR beautiful life and do something to revive your heart today,

Christie

#livingroomwithchristie

#reviveyourheartwithtlr

 

 

 

 

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An article about recovering from addiction

I had the priviledge of writing this article about my niece. I am so very proud of her and my nephew Ryan for telling their story. The more we stop hiding, the more we keep sharing our stories of recovery the more we come back to the light.

-Kate

LAYTON — Madison Rose was never comfortable in social situations. Shy and more of an introvert, she struggled with anxiety when it came to opening up in groups. When she first started drinking, she noticed that for the first time in her life, she could communicate without the anxiety that accompanied it.

"I was only having a couple of drinks. It was no big deal, plus it came with the benefit of making me feel comfortable," Rose said. "I never would have dreamed I would become dependent on alcohol."

Click here to read the rest of the article. 

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What I'd Tell My Younger Self

 

About this Show:

We can’t go back and change the past but what we can learn from it proves invaluable. An interesting question to ponder is: “WHAT WOULD I TELL MY YOUNGER SELF.” YOU...may not necessarily benefit from the advice, counsel, or warnings you’d give to your younger self...but someone else might:)) Today’s show will include humorous and meaningful introspection from the six, co-hosts from The Living Room as we go back in time to tell our younger selves some valuable lessons.

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


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Rock Canyon Rocks!

I have a love-hate relationship with Rock Canyon, the nearest nature spot to our home. It is beautiful year-round, and I am often there on foot; sometimes daily. Occasionally I bring along the family, a friend or two, or the dogs. The beauty and drama rarely disappoint—it seems every time of day and every season of the year brings something exciting and new—like I’m seeing the canyon for the first time, even though I’ve been there easily a hundred times.

Rock Canyon is known for the dramatic cliff walls rising up majestically on both sides, beckoning to climbers and cliff-jumpers as well as hikers like me. These rock walls capture the light in amazing ways and cast deep shadows over its crevasses.

But Rock Canyon is not my first choice for a hiking trail for one main reason: rocks.  (haha—I guess its name gave it away!)  The abundance of rocks that create such drama also makes the trail, well, rocky. It’s easy to slip on a pile of sliding shale or turn your ankle on an uneven patch, or stub your toe on rocks jutting out on the trail at any point in the first couple of miles. You have to cross five wooden foot bridges and wind your way up pretty high before the soles of your feet actually land on dirt. The rocks also make it less lush—the foliage is sparse, the air dry, and the overall feeling completely arid—and on sunny afternoons they seem to hold onto the heat and project it. The canyon turns into a stone-fired oven, and if you're not careful, you bake.

But this winter I gained a new appreciation for the rocks I hadn’t realized before. On Thanksgiving morning our family ventured about twenty minutes up the Rock Canyon trail when we hit a huge patch of ice, signaling the onset of winter. We poked around a little farther, then decided to turn around. We hadn’t brought crampons or other ice gear and wondered how far we’d be able to make it up the canyon safely.

The next day I went back, and the answer surprised me—I could go as far and as high as I wanted and the reason? It was the rocks. Those same annoyances in the trail during better weather became my allies on these somewhat icy days—the rocks provided traction that kept me from slipping and falling. My least favorite aspect of the trail suddenly became an asset.

I started wondering what else in my life started out as a deterrent, but ended up giving me the traction to keep going when conditions got rough. The first thing that came to mind was financial struggles. Had we not run into some lean years…years when we bought our furniture second-hand and refinished it ourselves, years when we had to start building our savings from the ground up, we wouldn’t have a lot of the skills we have now…the ability to live on less than we earn, donate to charity and save for larger goals (the seventeen savings accounts we have now)…the creative problem-solving required to put a household together on a shoestring without it looking that way…the ability to live debt-free and teach our children sound financial principles. If we have any traction now, i would have to give some credit to those earlier “rocks” in our path.

I invite you to join me in discovering rocks—new and old—in your own life, and looking for the blessing in disguise they might be…maybe some assistance waiting to surprise you on the trail when you least expect it.

#livingroomwithjana

#reviveyourheartwithtlr

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art instructor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergent pathways and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Laugh at Our Expense

The Living Room Season 2 begins TODAY with the show entitled "Laugh at Our Expense."  

Periodically, in The Living Room we like to share confessions and "TLR Fails." Completely un-rehearsed, we never know what each of us will confess. That's what makes us laugh all the more! So, laugh at our expense. Laugh along with us or at us. It really doesn't matter as long as you're laughing.  

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAMwww.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


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Hope, Healing and Support through Addiction

About this show:

Addictions have become so pervasive. So has hiding them. It was our goal to do what we could to stop the hiding, by having an open discussion about addiction. More importantly, to show through personal stories of loved ones and friends that there is always hope; that it is absolutely possible to overcome even the deepest and darkest addictions.

Does someone close to you suffer from an addiction? Do you want to know how you can help and show love without judgement? Our TLR addiction show focuses on hoping, healing, and supporting loved ones through the challenges of addiction. Our discussion, although candid, is hopeful and faith-promoting. We encourage anyone affected by addiction to seek the needed help from a caring professional. There is always help. There is always hope.

Download this Show: 

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

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Beginning again- After the death of my child.

My friend Krysta, is a wonderful example of beginning again when it's the last thing you want to do. Her story is inspiring. I love that for her, beginning again certianly doesn't mean forgetting, or that what happened is easy, or even OK. It simply means choosing to start again. Here is her story in her own words. 

-Kate

I feel like one of the biggest decisions to start again was ME making the choice. After my five year old passed away suddenly, I knew that no one would blame me for sitting in bed and feeling sorry for myself, but I started to grow tired of the way people looked at me. It was the same every time. They would tilt their head to the side, scrunch their face and say, "how you doing? You ok?" It was the pity look. And when people saw me in the grocery store or at a restaurant they didn't know what to say and often times would just start to cry. I remember thinking, is this how people are going to look at me from now on? People used to smile at me and come up to talk to me, but now they cry or avoid me because they don't know what to say.

Then one day I went to the gym and a woman came up to me. She put her arms around me and said, "I'm so sorry that I have to welcome you to the club." I was in disbelief as I thought, how did I not know that she had a child that passed away? And then I realized that the death of her child isn't what defines her. Don't get me wrong, I am PROUD to be Boston's mom and I will forever miss him and talk about his fun personality, but I was done with the pity look. I didn't want to get a pass because I was now a member of this club.

I remember laying in bed and thinking, I just want to feel better. I just wish that things could go back to they way they were. When I visited the Reebok campus, a man by the name of Dr. John Ratey came and spoke to us about the effects that exercise has on the brain. It's the equivalent of an anti-depressant drug. Now up until this point I had so many people say to me, "don't be afraid to take something. there's no shame in that." I hate taking tylenol for a headache and so the thought of any type of pill was daunting. So I kept coming back to Dr. Ratey's talk and thought- if it worked for others, why not me. I put my running shoes on and headed out. It was painful. I had to push myself harder that I ever had and I cried. Not because of the physical pain, but because of all the emotions that were built up inside of me. But I pushed through, and then something happened. My head became clear, and for the first time in weeks I could actually put my thoughts together. It was as though things that didn't make sense were starting to, well, make sense. And then the words came to my mind, "Boston for Boston." It was then that I decided to run the Boston Marathon. I didn't know how I would get there, but I decided to make it my goal.

I still struggle EVERYDAY and it doesn't help that I'm running in this weather, but I keep thinking, what if my little boy is watching me? What would I want to teach him? I use this to not only teach Boston, but his little brother, Fischer, as well. The last thing I want him to say to people is, "when Boston died, my mom just checked out." I want to show both of my boys that when things get hard, that you can push through. And that's what running has done for me. It not only has helped me to push through the physical pain and keep going, but it has helped me to push through the emotional pain and heartache.

I use running as a time to clear my head. Often times I don't even listen to my headphones. I talk to Boston and think of all the things that I wish I could teach him that day. And on April 18th I will run the Boston Marathon for my sweet Boston.

One day I was with a fellow trainer, and friend and he said to me, what do you want? As I've thought about that I've thought about how I want people to know me. I want them to know me as Boston's and Fischer's mom because I am proud to be that, but I also what them to see me as a strong woman. One who loves deeply, serves others and who isn't willing to give up when bad things happen. I don't want people to be sad when they hear my name.

I will forever miss Boston and I don't want people to mistake my choice to be happy with being happy that he is gone. That was a big worry for me. I don't want people to think that I'm not affected or that I'm relieved in any way. I want people to know that you can still choose to be happy. I still cry and miss my boy, but I also have Fischer and I want him to know that I am happy and proud of him too.

-Krysta Crane (Guest Contributor)

You can hear Kate mention some more of Krysta's story on our podcast, "Joy Cometh After the Sorrow."  

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Begin Again as a Painter

This post on the Living Room's Facebook page on January 2 seems to be resonating for a lot of our readers/listeners, so I thought I'd post it here as well.

_

In Los Angeles I was living the dream and ostensibly having it all, with a handsome filmmaker husband, a historic-register house, three adorable kids, and an amazing career as designer-to-the-rich-and-famous.

Then our fourth baby arrived…stillborn. Everything came to a screeching halt. Not only did our baby pass away before she even took her first breath, but part of me died along with her. I was a complete disaster. I had no desire to meet with clients, or even turn on the computer. I needed to heal, and I only wanted to spend time with the three children I had left. Suddenly the booming business meant absolutely nothing to me. Just getting through the day was sometimes my biggest challenge.

Vromans, our local bookstore, was offering a painting demonstration as part of a book launch: Pasadena Sketchbook, by Joseph Stoddard. The book was so beautiful! It was filled with the kind of paintings I wanted to make, but couldn't quite free myself up enough to create. My sister and I joined the plein-air painting event on the streets of Pasadena, and I could feel myself starting to come back to life.

I enrolled in Joseph’s Wednesday night watercolor classes at the Creative Arts Group in Sierra Madre…best therapy ever. I was usually the last one to leave…often promising to lock up if he’d allow me to stay and paint there. Don’t get me wrong—I wasn’t new to watercolor—I’d been painting my entire life. But it was Joe’s approach—the freedom, the color, the recklessness, even—as well as the dedicated time to paint, that was slowly reviving me, one painting at a time. 

At about the same time, my husband got an out-of-state job offer, and we realized we could afford to live on his salary alone. I was liberated. Goodbye, graphic design studio! No more deadlines, all-nighters, and accompanying headaches. I decided to reinvent myself as a painter.

We sent out this favorite pair of quotes in our New Year’s cards less that probably factored into this miracle:

 “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth…that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way.”—W. H Murray

“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!’
—Goethe

This was absolutely true for me. I committed myself to become a painter and amazing things happened in a steady stream: classes, mentors, opportunities, exhibits, awards, materials, and an adjunct faculty position at Utah Valley University all sort of dropped into my lap the moment I decided to begin again…as a painter. You can see my work at janaparkin.com.

This summer I’ll be a Resident Artist in Switzerland, taking a group of artists hiking and painting in the Alps. It’s been more than ten years and the opportunities branch and sprout, all stemming from that one major decision. At the time I might never have dreamed it would develop into anything this big. I was merely on a quest for peace. But the Universe is an even bigger dreamer than I am. I latched on and never looked back.

#livingroomwithjana
#beginagainwithtlr

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art instructor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergent pathways and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

 

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Peace Be Still

About this show:

In the midst of war and personal crisis Henry Wadsworth Longfellow penned the words, “Then in despair I bowed my head. There is no peace on Earth I said, for hate is strong and mocks the song of Peace on Earth good will to men.”  In a world with a never-ending news feed of chaos, violence, misunderstanding and hate, it often feel like peace is nowhere to be found.  And yet...within each one of us, in the innermost yearnings of our heart, is a light.  And within that light is a unique wish for Peace and Love.  But wishes don’t become realities without commitment and commitment often requires personal sacrifice.

Years later, after a season of his own personal growth and inner-resolution, Longfellow followed up his desperate words with these, “Then pealed the Bells more loud and deep.  God is not dead nor doth he sleep.  The wrong shall fail, the right prevail, with PEACE on Earth, good will to men.”  These words became the song, “I heard the Bells on Christmas Day” an anthem of Peace to the world- Longfellow’s own wish for peace fulfilled.  What kind of life are you willing to live to make your wish for Peace a reality?

 *See here for an inspiring version of the Longfellow story as told by Ed Herrmann and The Mormon Tabernacle Choir https://youtu.be/sXfzp296zhA

Quote:

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-12-15.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

References:

Jana's article, "Peace At Any Price," on her friend Liz's foundation: http://divergentpathways.blogspot.com/2015/12/peace-at-any-price.html

Connies article on Finding "Peace in Chaos." CLICK HERE to read. 

Shripshire Music Foundation: http://shropshirefoundation.org/who-we-are

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Here's the Thing

About this show:

Have you ever been chatting with your girlfriends and one of them says, “Here’s the thing, you have to…”

…try this great new cleaning product.

…read this amazing book.

…eat at this great new restaurant.

…listen to this song.

We have and we love it.  Some of our favorite things have been found in these conversations amongst friends.  So pull a chair up in our “Living Room” and take notes.  Product recommendations, book suggestions, favorite life hacks.  Here’s the thing…you’re going to love it!

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-12-08.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

References:
Books: My Monastery is a Minivan by Denise Roy

Products: Asolo Stynger hiking boots from Backcountry.com

Alpaca hiking socks: AlpacaDirect.com

Food/Drink: Mango Chocolate Chip Cookies: Rubysnap.com

Vacation spot: Hiking and painting in Switzerland: Alpenwild.com

Electronics/Media: Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Magic Lessons” podcast. (iTunes)

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

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10 Gifts to Give The Amazing Women in Your Life - Introducing The Living Room Gift Guide

Stuck on what to get that super woman in your life? A new book, nativity pillow, home decor or stress relief coloring book may be just the ticket. Check out these amazing items from our co-hosts and friends! (Links below!)

In no particular order!

1. Color Yourself Happy by Tara Reed get it on AMAZON.

2. Oh Holy Night, Nativity Pillow by Jennifer Pugh Studios get it HERE.

3. Hip to Home home decor by Heather Johnson & Melanie Donahoo available HERE.

4. 21 Days to Nurture Your Spirit by Christie Gardiner available HERE.

5. Make It Happen by Michelle McCullough get it on AMAZON.

6. Precious In His Sight by Jodi Robinson get it HERE.

7. A Half Fast Memoir by Kate Lee get it on AMAZON.

8. What Think Ye of Christmas Illustrated by Jana Parkin get it HERE.

9. Christmas Kisses: An Echo Ridge Anthology co-authored by Connie Sokol get it on AMAZON.

10. Family Fun Fridays by Heather Johnson get it HERE.

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Find Peace in Chaos

During this busy time of year, we yearn to feel the calm and joy of the season. Three simple practices-and they are practices-can help make that a reality.

1. Choose not to take offense. Being offended is an action we choose to "take on." Yes, there may be times when a person says or does something hurtful. However, thankfully, we get to choose our response. What I've found is that more often than not, daily people say or do things that they have no idea is offensive.

We can respond in a number of ways. One way is from the Japanese martial art of Aikido. In their practices is that of letting their opponents negative pass by rather than fight back. When someone is offensive, simply let it pass by and move forward. A more soul-searching response is to dig for a nugget of truth. It may be that the offense is a wake-up call to something we need to see within ourselves. If so, we've been blessed. If not, we can let it pass...

Read more here http://www.ksl.com/?sid=37611679&nid=1009&title=find-peace-in-your-chaos&s_cid=queue-1

Enjoy!

Connie

www.conniesokol.com

#thelivingroomconnie

 

 

 

 

 

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The Giving List

THE GIVING LIST is inspired by my good friend’s 11-year-old daughter, who, instead of making a list of toys she wanted from Santa, she made a list of things she wanted to GIVE.  On her list were things like…I want to help animals.  I want to feed hungry kids.  I’d like to make bookmarks for the missionaries.  When my friend Kris told me about this list, we both had tears in our eyes!  Then together, we came up with THE GIVING LIST so that other families could create meaningful service in their families.

THE GIVING LIST is a broad list of organizations or groups that you and your family could choose to HELP.  There are 10 of them.  You could choose all 10 or you could choose a few, or one or two.  But what you do to serve is up to you.  Whatever fits your family.  And remember your acts of Christmas kindness don’t have to be BIG to be meaningful.    

Find out more ideas for GIVING at Jodi Robinson's website www.shareloveserve.com.  

Read more at ShareLoveServe.  http://www.shareloveserve.com/?p=1108

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Defined by Divinity

About this show:

With television, magazines and social media clamoring to define women in worldly terms, we must take a break and redefine who we are through the eyes of God.  No matter your religion or faith, our maker can teach us important truths that the world forgets and oh how we need to remember!  Join us for simple tips that will help us return to our deepest foundations that will bring us great purpose in our days and greater joy in our moments as we powerfully choose to live defined by divinity.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-12-01.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


Quote of the Day:

References from this show:

"Ephesians 6:6 “Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers, but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.”

 


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The Manger As a Metaphor

We decorated our home last weekend at our daughter's insistence. She wants everything Christmas-ified in time for her December 3 birthday so she can revel in a winter wonderland. As I set up our favorite pewter nativity set, with the accompanying crystals and beads, in our blue room, my "peace place"...I was drawn into the scene and pondered the beauty of this timeless collection of characters and their role in our celebration—and in our lives.

I discovered that each figure of the Nativity, from the lowliest to the most revered, represents its own aspect of discipleship.


If we put them all together we can grasp a deeper understanding and a composite of traits that will help to render us true followers of Jesus. I've explored each of these in more depth on my blog, here, along with the matchless words of Neal A Maxwell, one of the modern-day disciples I most admire.


#livingroomwithjana

#livingintheseason

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.



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How to Make the Holidays Matter

[Enjoy this article with three simple tips that work on making how to make the holidays more meaningful.]

A few years ago on a lovely September day, it hit me that October was soon to arrive, and with it, the holidays. Suddenly, a sort of anxiety attack came over me. 

That was it.

Knowing it was time for a change in my approach, I listed, eliminated, experimented, and ultimately wrote a book on how to Simplify & Savor the Season. Here are a few tips from it that worked for me and my family, and might work for yours.

1. Get the family buy-in. Make it a family experience by involving all able members from the start. We typically hold a family night in early to mid-November and make our very simple three-step Holiday Plan. The first thing is to "focus on a feeling"-what feeling do we want to create this holiday season? Is it gratitude, joy, peace, contentment, service-mindedness? Once we figure out the feeling, then we choose the activities that create and support it. 

[Read the rest of the article here: https://www.ksl.com/?sid=37420101&nid=1009&title=no-more-one-woman-mom-show-3-steps-to-making-the-holidays-matter]

Best!

Connie

www.conniesokol.com

#livingintheseason

#TLRshow

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The Exceptional Gift of Self

 

About the show:

In discussing our favorite gifts we Living Room women realized that none of them came from the mall. The meaningful gifts were heartfelt, handmade, symbolic, or a personal investment. We may have experienced this, but come gift-giving time it’s hard to place confidence in. Believe it or not, what the people you love most want from you is you. But how do we share ourselves with limited time or energy, or feeling we don't have anything noteworthy to share? Learn today how to recognize your own simple gifts and how to more readily share them!

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoomLIVE_2015-11-17.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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Quote of the Day:

Never suppress a generous thought.” Camilla Kimball


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Teaching Kids Gratitude Practices

Are you looking for some new ways to get your kids to think about Gratitude?  Are you looking for ways to make it stick all year thought?  Co-host Michelle McCullough was featured on Fox 13's The Place today sharing these fun tips.

If you're interested in the thankful tree.  Michelle got it at Caravan Shoppe.  The download is totally afforable and I got it printed at a copy shop/office supply store.

If you're looking for the Thankful Lists Michelle created, there is one for kids and teens.  Enjoy this fun annual tradition.  Keep them in a binder and watch your kids grow!

Thankful Kids

Thankful Teens

You can follow us on Instagram: www.instagram.com/fromthelivingroom

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Listen by clicking in the top right of this page.   Click "view All Podcasts" or listen on itunes!

If you don't know where to start, listen to Awakening Your Soul to Gratitude

Or Living In The Season (Where we share our favorite Holiday traditions!) It will download straight to your phone or device.

Michelle is awesome and fun to follow, too.

Follow her on instagram: www.instagram.com/speakmichelle

Follow her on facebook: www.facebook.com/speakmichelle

Check out her website: www.speakmichelle.com

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Stress Less, Live More

About this show:

One of our most important modern-day challenges to staying mentally and physically healthy is learning how to manage stress. We all wish we could eliminate stress altogether but realistically that’s not possible. Many stress reducing techniques, relaxation rituals, and rejuvenation practices can help women deal with stress in a healthy and hopeful ways. Our Living Room co-hosts on today’s podcast share what they’ve learned and what works for them in our show: Stress Less, Live More.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-11-10.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


Quote of the Day:

 


 

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My Tie to This Week's Quote

Many people have heard Camilla Kimball's famous saying, "Never suppress a generous thought." What you might not know is that these words were spoken to my mother.

Long ago, when I was just a teenager, my mom decided to make a tie for our neighbor. My grandfather had just returned from a trip to Asia with armloads of beautiful silks, and asked my seamstress mother to make him some one-of-a-kind ties from these silks. As she was sewing these ties for Grandpa, she suddenly thought it might be nice to make one for our neighbor, Spencer Kimball, who was also a world traveler. She selected a beautiful piece of fabric and made him a tie.

This was not just any neighbor, though. Spencer Kimball just happened to be the President of the Mormon church at the time...and a modern-day prophet. My mother was eager to do something special for him. But as she walked up the steps to their house on Laird Avenue, she started to second-guess herself:

"Who am I to be making a tie for the prophet?"

"What if he doesn't like the fabric I picked or the way I sewed it."

"They might think I just made it because he wears ugly ties."

"How will they know what's in my heart?"

"I should just back away now while I can."

As she was retreating down the steps, she heard the door swing open, and Sister Kimball (Camilla) called out to her. My mother shyly explained the situation...that she'd made a tie for President Kimball, but was suddenly embarrassed to give it to him.

That when Sister Kimball responded, "Never suppress a generous thought." And it has stayed with me ever since.

A few months later we saw President Kimball on television wearing Mom's tie!

It's not always easy, but when I second-guess my own imperfect gift-giving, I am often reminded of this story. And so I give anyway. Regardless of the presentation.

Sometimes it's just about the giving. Listen to our latest broadcast, "The Exceptional Gift of Self" here on the homepage, or at itunes: bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

#livingroomwithjana

#livingintheseason

 

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

 

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Bundt Cake and Angels

The following story happened almost two years ago when my little boy turned 6.

My little boy turned 6 today. I didn't cry all day and you know what? I never even had to choke back tears. I was just happy for him that he was SO happy. I took two photos today on my phone, and neither had him in it. Not because I didn't want to capture it (we did take some on the family camera for scrapbook purposes, of course), but I was just in the moment with him and it was refreshing and amazing. I put my head on his pillow at the end of a fun filled day and we talked about his favorite things. We savored it.

Six years ago today, before I was ever on Facebook, I was sitting in a hospital room. I was a new mom and didn't know what to expect, but I certainly didn't expect my 10 lb 3 oz son to be in the NICU connected to 27 wires and tubes. I sat in my room feeling helpless and hormonal and I cried a lot that day, with an enveloping blanket of peace that flooded over me all at the same time. I'm sure glad we made it through that. I can't believe how much time has gone by, I just know I'm grateful to be his mom and watch him grow.

If you're still reading, (and I don't blame you if you aren't, I'm clearly rambling now) I have to tell you the story of his cake (one of two pictures I took today).

He wanted banana cake (ala Janet Frandsen Kabeary). It's really a banana bread recipe but the outside is sugar crusted so we call it Banana Cake at our house.

I was able to mix it up and put it in the oven and take it out before I had to leave to take the kids to school and meet with a client. When I got home my heart sunk. This cake is divine, but there is a narrow window where you can get it out of the bundt pan where it's not all mangled. I was gone for 2 hours with my client and I was clearly past that finicky 12 minute window.

I panicked. Should I start over really fast (which I didn't have time for)? Should I scrape it out and pass it as good? Do I go buy something else and we spoon it out for our own good later? Should I google, "How do you get cooled things out of bundt pans?"

I took a deep breath and I got what I can only describe as divine inspiration. The thought came to me, "Put the pan in warm water in a bowl." I got a bowl and put in the hottest tap water I could get.

Then the thought came, "It's not hot enough, put it in the microwave."

I popped it in for four minutes. After it came out, I put the pan in the bowl and thought, "Well, how long do I leave it there?"

The thought came, "Five minutes." Okay then, and I set the timer.

After five minutes, I put the cooling rack on top, turned it over, tapped it with a knife for good measure and it popped out prettier than ever before.

You can call it whatever you want. I call it a little wink my way from a loving God that cares about me AND cares about my little boy. And I spent the rest of the day enveloped in gratitude and peace. It was a glimpse of heaven - perhaps my grandma whispering in my ear just what to do.

While I'm writing the longest article of my life, I feel inclined to say this: It doesn't always happen this way. There are plenty of times in my life things go "wrong" even when I'm praying the most fervent prayers. I can't explain that except to say, that I feel like we have moments like these more often than we notice. As I'm on my trek to SAVOR more and speed less, I'm noticing these little things more and more.

And I'm forever changed.

P.S. Still not crying. ;)

#livingroomwithmichelle

#livingroomsundays

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Join Us: What Are You Grateful For? - Living In The Season

We have created a fun campaign for November: Living In The Season!

The holiday season is here and the bustle of parties and gifts and food preparations and music and shopping and...is ready to take over, so how can we truly LIVE and savor the holidays?

We'd love you to dive in! Join us on facebook http://www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

Here are some of my favorite questions and answers so far:

November 13: Think of something in nature that you are thankful for and talk about it.

 I am thankful for the waves and the sand at the beach. Growing up just a stones throw from the water, I found solace then, and now, in the smell and sound of the waves, and the way the sand feels between my toes. Right before I moved away from the beach, I went down one day and filled a glass bottle with sand from the beach that I grew up playing on. It is the same beach that we now take ou...r children too every year. Every once in a while I open that jar and quietly hold a handful in my palm. It is as if I can smell the salt in the air and feel the humidity on my skin. And although home is and always will be where my family is, when I am at the ocean, that is when I feel truly alive. My soul can breath and my spirit soars. It amazes me that my Heavenly Father would make something so powerful as waves and then allow me to tap into that power. That I can play in the same water that covers the earth and has power beyond measure. - Heather

Flowers. I adore flowers—the aromas, varieties, playfulness, and joyful feelings they bring! It wasn’t until this year that I realized where it came from. My mother loves flowers too, but she shared that her mother also loved flowers. To the point that when she took my mother to her house cleaning job, she passed by flowers so beautiful that she used their bus fare home and had to walk many, many blocks (my mom’s version of the story!) to get back home. - Connie

One of my favorite qu...otes related to flowers is taped to the wall by my bedside.

“A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.” Anonymous

‪#‎livingintheseason‬
‪#‎livingroomwithconnie

November 12: Share a gratitude tip.

I have a gratitude journal I keep on my iPad. You can download it for free from the iTunes store (just like the Living Room shows!). I like to take a few minutes before bed to jot down at least five things I am grateful for that day. I should qualify not just things but an awareness of goodness and blessings in my life constitute these items I list. I find that taking time to list five is essential…the first two are usually easy and obvious. But after that I usually have to think a little harder about my day and what to celebrate. By the time I list five I am usually immersed in an “attitude of gratitude,” where I could continue to list almost endlessly. But I usually stop at just five. - Jana

‪#‎seasonofliving‬
‪#‎livingroomwithjana

November 11: Share your favorite recipe. I love to cook traditional Thanksgiving Fare. When Thanksgiving is at my house I have "narrowed it down" to seventeen essential dishes. I love them all and can't sacrifice any of them. It reminds me of Thanksgiving surrounded by my immediate family, as well as aunts and cuncles, cousins and my grandmother. When I smell these recipes I can hear my grandma, mom and aunts laughing as they cook in the kitchen. These recipes are the aromas of nostalgia.

This recipe is for a non-traditional Green Bean Casserole. It's creamy and cheesy and delicious.

Live your beautiful life,
Christie
‪#‎livingroomwithchristie‬
‪#‎livingintheseason‬

Green Bean Casserole

1 qt beans
1 cube butter
¼ cup flour (or more)
1 C cream
1 C milk
½ C water Chestnuts sliced
½ lb sharp cheddar cheese- grated

Prepare a white sauce, (melt butter, add flour, when smooth add milk and cream. This will take awhile, up to 20 minutes for right thickness), melt cheese into white sauce, add vegetables, Bake at 325 for 45 min- 1 hour.

*I also add garlic powder, dry mustard and black pepper to the sauce, although these are not in the original recipe.

 

November 10: What smell are you most grateful for?

What smell are you most grateful for?

That is a tough question. I am going to cheat and say, “holiday smells.” I can’t just pick one. There is nothing better than waking up on Thanksgiving and smelling a turkey in the oven or Christmas morning and smelling hot chocolate, wassail, cinnamon rolls and breakfast casserole. I love that those things represent so much more than food to me. They are my memories.
-Kate
‪#‎livingroomwithkate‬
‪#‎livingintheseason

Please join us on facebook and share your favorite recipes, gratitude tips and they way YOU are choosing to LIVE in the season!

- Michelle

#livingroomwithmichelle

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Grateful for the Wilderness

Several years ago, in this post on my personal blog, I wrote about my "Gratitude for the Wilderness."

I'm sure none of you would be surprised to hear me expressing gratitude for nature. That's my real go-to place for renewal. But the Wilderness in this post is more of a metaphor for hardship. This was written during a time of deep struggle and crisis in our family. A time when things were going wrong and seemed to be spinning rapidly out of control. The loneliness, the dangers, and the perils of the wilderness could easily be compared to what was going on in our lives at that point. The crags and briars and the thorns...that's the kind of wilderness we were journeying through!

That year, as Thanksgiving approached, however, I found myself profoundly grateful. I realized I was as grateful for the challenges themselves as I was for the blessings and the miracles that followed in their wake. I was grateful for the lessons I was learning (this was no slacker course, but an instensive seminar!) and—believe it or not—of the sacrifices we chose to make.

You can read the whole post, but i think the last few paragraphs sum up the ideas best:

"This year our oldest son spent two months in the wilderness. It was a much-needed instrument of change. The beating down of the earth's elements seem to soften his heart in ways nothing else had succeeded in doing.

At some point every one of us, just like fairy tale characters as well as prophets and patriarchs, will have to pass through a personal wilderness. Perhaps several, both literal and figurative. These wildernesses are frightening places, full of unknowns, full of danger...but often harboring wise leaders, helpful guides...and always effecting change.

This year my gratitude for the wilderness is profound. I am grateful for the progress our son made there, for the peace and reflection that comes to me when I escape there myself, and most especially for the wilderness Christ was willing to enter in our behalf. I am acutely aware of the fear that comes as we leave our personal comfort zones to embark on a journey. I am in awe of the peace that is offered, often in the very face of life-threatening danger. And I rejoice in the miracle and power of change."

#livingroomwithjana

#livingintheseason

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Crunchy Leaves and the Smell of Snow

Crunchy Leaves and the Smell of Snow

Fourteen years ago, my volunteer work landed me a teaching opportunity at an addiction recovery center in downtown Salt Lake.  I walked into a room of 40 recovering addicts.  Believe me--I was nervous.  I’ve never put a cigarette to my lips, smoked a joint, drank a beer, never sipped a cup of coffee, or experienced getting high.  One could say I had no business offering any understanding to those dealing with alcoholism or drug addiction.  And, yet, so many cherished and important lessons in my life have come from women in recovery.  

With November being a month focused on thankfulness, I remember one particular lesson I'll never forget.  

I walked into the room with my three little kids obediently following behind me, like ducklings would follow a mother duck.  I set my craft buckets on the floor, introduced myself while handing my kids coloring books and crayons to keep them busy.  I then introduced to the women a quick gratitude exercise.  I asked them to write down things they were grateful for--as many as they could think of in two minutes.  To my surprise, their pencils flew across their papers!  I had assumed naively I was there to teach women who might not know how to appreciate the good things in life.  And, yet, to them, quickly I became the student. 

I invited the women to share what they'd written down.  Eagerly their hands raised.  Without fail, they listed sobriety number one on their lists, because they understood that without sobriety—that one thing—they would have nothing.  That was so humbling for me to think about.  That without having a clean, clear, mind and body NOTHING could be seen as a blessing.  Addiction was a thief that would rob them of noticing their blessings.  

Then the BIG lesson came as two women shared their stories.  The first woman explained how grateful she was for the sound of crunching leaves on the sidewalk, as she walked to treatment that morning. She'd been incarcerated for a year.  She expressed how she'd noticed how wonderful it was to hear the sound of crunching leaves beneath her feet.  A crunching sound may not seem like much to some.  But then she said, "I lived in a cell.  And walked around a gated courtyard for a year.  I didn't see a tree for an entire year!"

I got it!  Boy did I get it!  

Being free to walk down a sidewalk, to actually be able to walk up to a tree, and touch the bark; to feel it with your bare hands and pick up the crunchy leaves and throw them into the air for the first time in 365 days!  That was something to be grateful for.  How blessed she said she was to walk FREELY down a sidewalk lined with giant maples and oaks with their red, orange, and gold leaves scattering the walkway.  I could tell to her the experience was nothing short of a miracle.    

I was grateful, too.  In that very moment, I was grateful for crunchy leaves and tall trees.  I couldn't wait to walk down that sidewalk out in front of the building and experience it the way she had.    

Another woman forever changed the way I look at snow.  I never thought of snow actually having a smell until Debbie shared with me her story.  She expressed how depressing it felt to be in her cell hour after hour, especially because the bars were up high blocking a single, small window that couldn’t be opened.  She longed to smell fresh air.  Wintertime came and she said she grew more and more depressed.  She remembered one day it started snowing and how she'd looked up to see snowflakes falling outside!  She said she couldn’t wait for her 30 minutes (can you imagine only 20 minutes?) to be outside to smell the snow.  She described the smell as fresh, wet, and clean.  But then she told me it was that smell that motivated her to start following the rules of the jail so she could earn more time outside.  It was that smell that motivated her to change her attitude and gave her hope to dream of life outside the bars.  Even when others around her were negative and crass, she understood her rule following and positive attitude would give her the privilege of being able to smell the glorious snow!  That, she said is what gave her the courage to get through one more day, and all through the winter.  And all through her sentence. 

Until I met this met Debbie I'd never considered what snow smelled like.    

But I do now.  

Because of these two women in recovery, every snowfall I breathe in the fresh smell of snowflakes and enjoy stomping on crunchy, fallen leaves. I won't ever take them for granted--ever again. 

That day I could see how gratitude is the key to unlock even the hardest of hearts--even hearts locked away and imprisoned by addiction.  Even hearts who've lost everything--family, children, relationships, jobs, health, homes, money, friends.  

Gratitude helps every soul--even those lost then found.  

To me, gratitude is a healing process for the heart.  When thankfulness takes the place where bitterness once lived it opens a soul to the possibilities of small miracles--even the sound of crunchy leaves and the smell of snow.

#thelivingroomJodi

#livingintheseason

 

#BeGratefulForSmallThings

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Living in the Season

About this show:

Holiday Traditions add sweet memories and experiences to our lives, but can easily turn sour when we lose site of their meaning. Tune in as we help you savor the holiday season and remember why we celebrate it in the first place. Tips for a less stressful season along with all of our favorite holiday traditions. Give the Gift of Yourself.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-11-03.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio


Quote of the Day:

"I like to compare the holiday season with the way a child listens to a favorite story. The pleasure is in the familiar way the story begins, the anticipation of familiar turns it takes, the familiar moments of suspense, and the familiar climax and ending." - Fred Rogers

"The Holiday Season is the perfect time to reflect on our blessings and seek out ways to make life better for those around us."


References:

Connie Sokol’s book: Simplify & Savor the Season: Organize and Re-energize your Holidays!

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An Ever-Tipped Scale

I love Autumn.  And November.  And Thanksgiving.  And everything to do with Gratitude.  How amazing to have an entire month to focus on giving thanks.  For the past four years I have studied the effects of Gratitude in my life.  One thing that has become very valuable to me over the course of these years is some sort of gratitude practice.  In my practice I have a gratitude journal.  I also find that stopping—even in the middle of something—to offer thanks to God is important to me.  (If you ever see me at the side of the road looking lost, don’t worry, I’m probably thanking God for some fantastic thing I’ve just noticed.)  My children have even picked up on it and now we can be found hiking while yelling, “Thanks God!” 

I have found that gratitude practice is a scale that is ever-tipped in my favor.  As I begin to offer thanks for the obvious things around me, my eyes are opened to the not-so-obvious and I become overwhelmed with the abundance of glorious blessings that surround me.  When I am consistent in my gratitude, I see that I am even able to find things to be grateful for within my hardships. 

I’d love to issue a gratitude challenge!  Join me this month in taking to your social media and offering daily gratitude.  Your spirit of thanks will be contagious and I invite you to watch as your eyes are opened to the great blessings of your life that are right before you.  Love and Blessings to all of you in this beautiful season of Thanksgiving.

For more tips from our co-hosts on Gratitude, we invite you to listen to our show entitled “Awaken your Soul to Gratitude.”  You'll hear a tender moment Kate had with her Mom while her mom was praying mid-life.  You'll find out Connie's great tip on gratitude and the 5 senses.  You'll hear how gratitude shaped Michelle in the middle of a hard time.  You'll hear Jana's joy in gratitude.  Heather will provide you with a beautiful analogy you won't forget and Jodi will make you think about your own life's gratitude.  It's one not to be missed!

Until next time, live your beautiful life,
Christie

 

Christie Gardiner is a wife, mom, and friend to all.   She acts, sings, writes, teaches, reads, and sits on the board of the non-profit survivorsAre.org.  Read more of her thoughts at http://www.christiegardiner.com .  ­­­

 

 

 

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A Letter To My Daughter

My darling girl,
May you always be as confident and as vibrant as you are today. May you always "want to wear all the colors" and stand up to people when they say, "You don't match." May you know that you are beautiful in any outfit you wear and that your smile, your personality and your kindness for others truly makes you fully dressed, and dressed in style. May you know that my love for you is not dependent on what you wear (or if your hair is perfectly placed) and that my love for you is unconditional. May you also know that anyone who suggests you should look a certain way or wear a certain kind of clothes is not worthy of your time or your heart. Be you. And may you always be you BOLDLY and without apologies. I love watching who you are bravely becoming.
Cheering you on!
Love, Mom

#livingroomwithmichelle

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Limitless

About this Show:

Have you ever said to yourself, "I could never in a million years do that" as you've watched someone else, do something, that you believe for you, is impossible? So have we. Today, we're talking about those rare times in our lives, where for a little while, we have become Limitless. We'll discuss running a marathon as a non-runner, as well as doing a 100 mile bike race as a non-cyclist. But the challenges aren't just physical. We’ll share impossible deadlines that were met, entire books illustrated in just two weeks, singing on stage with stage fright, and more. We'll also divulge what we think we could never do and why. We believe that we are all literally God's children and that there are no minor players in His family. So if there is greatness in each of us, and we are capable of far more than what we think, then let's find out how we become Limitless and the lessons we learn along the way.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-10-27.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Today's Quote:

 

“Rejoice in the abundance of being able to awaken each morning and experience a new day.  Be glad to be alive, to be healthy, to have friends, to be creative, to be a living example of the joy of living.  Live to your highest awareness.  Enjoy your transformational process.” –Louise Hay, You Can Heal Your Life

Reccomendations from today's show:

Philippians 4:13. "I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me.  -Jana

Affirmation from Louise Hay:  “I now live in limitless love, light and joy.  All is well in my world.”

Series of posts from Jana, on being limitless:

 

 

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Be Who You Must, That's a Part of the Plan

During the month of October on The Living Room we’ve been exploring all aspects of our imaginary “perfect day,” in connection with our episode “Who Do You Want To Be…and What’s Stopping You?”  This week we’re launching a new show called “Limitless.” This post contributes some insight to ideas presented in both of those shows.

I love this article a friend recently shared from Steven Pressfield’s site, because it talks about someone who is a “late bloomer,”—James Rhodes—who decided to do something big in his 40s. He was not a child prodigy, not someone who majored in this in college, but someone who decided mid-stream that he wanted to live a different life. He wanted to become a concert pianist. And then he did!

Best of all, he describes HOW he did it…what he sacrificed, and how he rearranged his schedule to give himself a precious six hours a day to pursue his passion. He takes you through a series of What Ifs, (What Ifs that actually happened for him) until you realize this is truly POSSIBLE!

While I do NOT recommend sacrificing personal relationships or sanity, I do admire his pluck, and the fact that he pulled it off.

I especially love this line:
“We seem to have evolved into a society of mourned and misplaced creativity.” How sad that most of the world today is ignoring the thing they are most passionate about, burying their inner genius and divine spark, surrendered instead to the non-stop drivel online and on t.v. Why not become that person we were designed to be, why not choose to do that impossible thing?

http://www.stevenpressfield.com/2015/08/find-what-you-love-and-let-it-kill-you-2/

p.s. Shout-out to Dan Fogelberg for the title of this article: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Og-FVtjSxi0



Still reading? I also have some links for you to a series I wrote describing a time when I was limitless—when I did something impossible, something i thought I’d never be able to do in a million years. I shared a tiny bit of this story on our show, but there is so much more in terms of both disasters and miracles. And the How-tos as well. Read the entire saga if you can, and let me know how you’re becoming limitless too. The series is called Christmas All Summer.

Connection, Harmony, Joy
Darkness, Despair, and a Dare
Toil, Solitude, Prayer
Water, Light and Inspiration
Opening Miracles

#livingroomwithjana
#myperfectday

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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7 Signs You Are Over-Parenting

Do you do everything for your child? Worry that they can't take care of themselves or find yourself involved in power struggles over things that are not important?

Watch this Studio 5 segment to see if you are over parenting.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH

 

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Boundaries and Privacy in a Digital World

About this Show:

As parents, we admit that we are raising children in a challenging world. A world with instant access to information allows our children more possibilities to encounter danger than ever before. We want to respect our children’s individuality and privacy while at the same time defining boundaries for safety. Is doing both of those things simultaneously even possible? How much snooping is too much? What can you do to keep your child safe while maintaining a relationship of trust? On today’s show our co-hosts offer a variety of viewpoints on privacy, boundaries, trust and safety with our children.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-10-20.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Today's Quote:

 

Reccomendations from today's show:

Good Pictures, Bad Pictures by Kristen A. Jenson M.A.  (Author), Debbie Fox (Illustrator), Gail A. Poyner Ph.D. (Contributor)

http://www.amazon.com/Good-Pictures-Bad-Porn-Proofing-Todays/dp/0615927335/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1442332717&sr=8-1&keywords=book+good+pictures+bad+pictures

A Mom’s IPhone contract written for her son. :

http://www.janellburleyhofmann.com/postjournal/gregorys-iphone-contract/#.VfhID3s7Sbg

“A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove... but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”  --Forest Witcraft

Apps to watch out for: http://www.graniteschools.org/blog/2015/09/01/6543/

 

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Questions to Help Parents Set Social Media Boundaries

Kids today grow up pinning, tagging, posting, and tweeting about their lives.  But what does all this sharing mean for value-based families who desire to keep their kids safe? 

In our recent show “Boundaries and Privacy with Children” my co-hosts and I shared experiences we’ve had setting boundaries and respecting privacy in our own families.   We all agreed being parents “in the know” makes for stronger, safer, and happier families. 

As a mother of one young adult, two teens, and a ten-year-old, I’ve experienced my fair share of boundary and privacy issues, especially in the area of social media.  There’s so much to say on this topic.  In thirty minutes, we could barely scratched the surface.  Something I didn’t have time to share that has helped me teach my family about proper social media usage comes from an article I read on LDS.org.  These broad questions make you pause and think what purpose social media should have in your life, so that your on-line world remains balanced and value-focused. 

The questions are excellent check points to discuss with your kids, again and again.  They’re meant to help families stay “in tune and in balance.”  After all, the social media and digital technology world is anything but balanced!  So, next time you sit down at the dinner table with your family, use these questions as your table-talk.  You can access the questions here.  (https://www.lds.org/ensign/2012/02/keeping-safe-and-balanced-in-a-google-youtube-twitter-facebook-ieverything-world?lang=eng)

Am I using this technology to learn or to teach?

Am I using it to build faith and testimony in myself and others?

Am I using it to entertain in uplifting ways?

Am I giving enough undistracted in-person time to family and friends?

Am I devoting enough time to work, school, church, and physical exercise?

I’ve found that discussing these simple questions with family members, from time to time, helps us set proper boundaries.  After all, any activity left unchecked can become unbalanced.  One mother I spoke to who used these questions said they helped her evaluate honestly her own social media usage.  So, much good can come from just asking you and your family members these questions. 

Some other ideas parents can consider to help manage their kid’s social media usage are as follows:    

· Ask questions (Learn about who your kids are friends with on-line and have open and honest dialogue about who they’re friends with and why.)

· Explain how to keep postings in line with your family’s values. 

· Encourage unfriending or unfollowing someone who doesn’t reflect the same values as your family. 

· Perform random phone checks. 

· Be your child’s social media “friend” (Comment on their posts.  Be a presence in their on-line world.) 

· Teach social media etiquette (Let kids know what your family rules are.)

· Set and reset boundaries (Kids may make mistakes so be offer needed reminders and turn mistakes into teaching moments.)

With love and friendship,

Jodi 

Jodi Marie Robinson is an author of “Precious in His Sight – Seeing yourself as God sees you”, “A Royal Guardian”, and “Women of Virtue.”  She shares ideas on how to share, love, and serve at www.shareloveserve.com and is a co-host for The Living Room show. 

#thelivingroom

#thelivingroomJodi

#shareloveserve

 

 Email me questions and comments at shareloveserve@gmail.com.

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Becoming A Super Hero Family - Magical Moment at Universal Studios Orlando

I had the opportunity to attend Family Forward at Universal Studios Orlando last month.  It was awesome - better than I imagined and I had HIGH expectations.  We got to see every aspect of the two parks and our package included some pretty cool perks.  I have a new addiction to Butter Beer (we prefer frozen) thanks to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and this moving loving lass loved sets and rides set to my favorite movies.  We're already talking about next year!

That said, one of my favorite nights was our first night. Our opening party was super hero themed and as a family we got to talk about what super powers our family demonstrates or would like to demonstrate.  It was fun being with my kids and working with other families as well.

In our show "Rasing Children Who Contribute" we talk about the power of teaching kids the value of work and of looking outside themselves.  I was drawn back to this night and my mind has been reeling about how they go together.  We want strong children that aren't afraid to get their hands dirty and that are willing to step in.  Whether it's fixing up the house iwth mom and dad, or standing up for a kid in school that is being bullied.  Sometimes our super hero powers take on many forms, and I want my kids to know that they can effect change and they can contribute in powerful ways.

I want to pose the question to you...What are you doing with your family to develop your super powers?  What time have you spent discussing how you as a family can serve and help the world?

You can also listen to The Living Room on iTunes!

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Joy Cometh After the Sorrow

About this Show:

Sometimes in the middle of a crisis, loss, or hardship, it’s so difficult to remember what joy feels like (or even what “okay” feels like). We want to share some stories with the advantage of retrospect, to remind us all that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and a rainbow waiting to brighten even the stormiest of days—that sorrow really can turn to joy.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-10-13.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Today's Quote:

 

Reccomendations from today's show:

Jacob 4:3  

3 Now in this thing we do rejoice; and we labor diligently to engraven these words upon plates, hoping that our beloved brethren and our children will receive them with thankful hearts, and look upon them that they may learn with joy and not with sorrow, neither with contempt, concerning their first parents.

 

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/jacob/4.3a?lang=eng

 

The Cure for the Common Life by Max Lucado

“Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was often times filled with your tears. And how else can it be? The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” Khalil Girban


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I Wanted People to Hate Her- The rest of the story

I had the opportunity to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Catania, Italy. When you serve a mission for the Mormon Church, you are assigned into groups of two or a companionship. Some companions fit you perfectly, while many others do not. Twenty-four hours a day with someone - anywhere from 3-6 months and sometimes longer - can get very trying. However, learning to get along with someone comes in handy once you marry. Learning to become more humble comes in handy always.

I was given one particular companion who was very different than me. Although I absolutely respected her drive, her testimony of Jesus Christ and her love for the Italian people, beyond that we didn't have much in common. After a few short weeks I found myself wishing one of us would get transferred to another area and therefore a new companion. 

It gets lonely on the mission. Having the only other person you can talk to be someone that you don't really get along with, compounds that feeling immensely. As a 21-year old girl, I felt it acutely. I later realized that she did as well.

My companion would often make calls at night to one of her previous companions. They would talk in Italian and since I didn’t yet know the language well enough to understand, I didn’t know I was often the topic of conversation, more specifically how difficult I was to live with.

Frankly, at that time I am not sure that I would have cared. I was exhausted each night from walking many miles all day long in the heat, home-sickness and rejection. I was battling my own things and didn’t much care what she thought of me. After all I wasn’t there to make friends; I was there to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I was finally transferred after three months.

My new companion happened to be the companion of the girl that my companion called nightly to complain about me. It became very evident, very quickly that my new companion had already formed a not-so-great opinion of me. After three days of me trying to be-friend her, she broke down one night. “OK you are way different that I imagined you were. I was terrified after all I heard about you, to get you as a companion. I’m so sorry.”

I was shocked to say the least, but grateful that she had told me. She and I ended up great friends. However during the midst of that time, something else began to happen to me; anger.

How dare that girl say all of those things about me that were un-true. How dare she spread rumors about me. My name would now be tainted with each new companion before I even had a chance to show them who I was. This anger continued to build in me and I found myself thinking about it constantly and then talking about it constantly. It finally got to the point where one night I turned to my new companion; who by now was very aware of my feelings. “I should warn all the other girls about her.” I said hatefully.

I will never forget the powerful lesson I was taught in that moment by a dear and wise friend.

Her brow furrowed in sadness as she looked at me. “Oh, Kate. You don’t want people to hate her do you?”

Instantly I was filled with shame. I could see in that moment who I was becoming. How ironic it was that I had thought I was there to teach about Jesus Christ, when I was acting in a way completely contrary to Him. Even more alarming, I realized the answer to her question was, “Yes.” I wanted to win. I wanted to be more liked. I wanted people to hate her and like me.

Perhaps one of the most sobering moments in my life was finding out I wasn’t as humble, Christian, kind and forgiving as I thought I was.

From that moment on, I decided to change. I made an effort to point out the good in that companion to all my future companions. It wasn’t hard either, because once I stopped feeling anger, I could clearly see that she was full of good and remember all of the good she had done for me as well as others while we were together. I wrote her a note and apologized for my behavior while we were together. I could now see things from her side and realized, I wasn’t the only one that thought I had it hard and I wasn’t the only one that did. I also wasn’t ideal to live with.

This particular companion became someone for me that I truly admire. She taught the gospel of Jesus Christ with such conviction. Regardless if we got along perfectly or not, I never denied that I always felt His spirit when she spoke of him. I am so grateful for all she taught me in that regard as well the valuable lesson of forgiveness.

Forgiveness is powerful. We read in the book of Hebrews about “entering into God’s rest.” Once I chose to forgive and humble myself, I felt rested once again. Carrying that burden of anger was exhausting.

Many times I have been reminded that the mission experience was so much more for me to learn than it was for me to teach.

I will forever be grateful for that and for two dear friends, one who taught me to forgive and another who forgave me.

The original article appeared on KSL. com  http://www.ksl.com/?sid=36938700&nid=1284&title=a-lesson-in-forgiveness-i-wanted-people-to-hate-her

 

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book. . . look for it in four years.  

Read more of Kate's writings at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com

 

 

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Raising Children Who Know How to Work

In a society that often enables and even encourages entitlement, our children can gain a skewed perception on work ethic, self-motivation, and genuine give-back contribution. But parents can fight back with a key word: work. But where do we begin?

1. Use principles you learned as a child. Remember those grunt and grunge jobs you held as a youngster, and what they taught you (i.e., do anything but a grunt and grunge job)? I picked strawberries for a dollar a flat (cue the martyr music) and babysat four little kids for a dollar an hour and washed the dishes and mopped the floor. Gone are those days.

Work taught you life lessons. Be sure you're passing them onto your children through opportunity and shared perspective (translate: lectures that begin with, "When I was your age...")

2. Start children young. The adage is, if they can read, they can fold laundry. Our children fold towels at three, and help vacuum, unload spoons from the dishwasher, and sweep a section of floor. It's not pretty but they do it and ironically, generally love it. At this age they feel the intrinsic confidence and satisfaction of accomplishing a task.

These household chores make a difference. In the article "Three Tools to Build a Sacred Home," author Shirley R. Klein, Brigham Young University associate professor of School of Family Life, shares:

"Mundane activities can have a higher purpose and must not be disregarded; they give us opportunities to develop and practice character virtues and ethical behavior. By doing these everyday activities, we can learn about moral truths and practice honesty, patience, charity, and brotherly kindness. Everyday work and recreation in the home provide rich contexts for children and adults to make choices and learn from them."

3. Relate work to life preparation. Help your children at any age understand the connection between the learned principles in daily jobs to the needed skills in their future employment.

At a recent family night I shared with our children, ages 22 down to 3, how the menial homemaking chores actually helped more than keep our home tidy. Cooking taught them timing and sequencing. Cleaning taught them efficiency (as in, who wants to clean longer than necessary?) And working with annoying or uncooperative siblings prepared them for teamwork situations in the workplace.

4. Type a resume. Done in a brief version, I start our children about age seven and list the jobs they are doing. Whether it's weeding, laundry, or cooking, it's helpful for them to understand these are useful age-appropriate life skills. Our kids have also learned to box and ship product, follow directions, and add creative design. Various skills can add up and can come in handy later.

Although our kids do basic chores that are simply part of being a family, they also have extra chores that can be done for pay. These kinds of skills can also be listed and built upon. For example, a few girls in our community took their babysitting skill and expanded it to a kids' camp. With a morning and afternoon session they made about five hundred dollars for the week.

In recent studies, expert say that teaching kids the value of hard work and determination is more important than building self-esteem. With one intentional step at a time, we can teach and model for our kids the power and blessings of work in everyday life.  

Best,

Connie Sokol

www.conniesokol.com

#thelivingroomconnie

 

 

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Who Do You Want To Be And What's Stopping You?

 

About this Show:

In the depths of our hearts we have dreams. We have things we want to do and things we want to become. Who do YOU want to be and what’s stopping you? In this show we are looking at those lonely dreams we have put in an old corner in the dusty box labeled “someday.” We’ll discuss how to quiet the voices of opposition and start following that inner voice that yearns for something more. We remind you that you did—you do—have dreams and we discuss the possibility that those dreams weren’t arbitrarily thought up by you but were given to you by a higher power to be used for specific purposes. Find the person you’ve always wanted to be. The world is missing her.

Download this Show: 

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-10-06.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Today's Quote:

 

“When we as women become secure in our own leadership abilities, when women claim our inherent gifts of leadership and influence, when we find our cause, we will be unstoppable. And we will change the world” Holly Richardson

 

Reccomendations from today's show:

The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Ella Luna

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A Lesson on the #myperfectday exercise

Recently, in connections with our October 6 show, "Who do YOU want to be and what is stopping you?"  The Living Room women have been doing a group exercise on our social media channels. 

"To help create that mental picture of your perfect day, every day in October The Living Room is posting questions—and answers—about small aspects of our perfect day on all our social media channels, designed to help trigger thoughts and ideas. Find us wherever you hang out online, read each question, and join the conversation by sharing and commenting with your ideal vision too.

By the end of the month you should have a detailed picture of your own perfect day, and be one step closer to uncovering your core identity."

The first day was a breakthrough for me.  What if exactly what we want is what we already have?  Read More about my discovery on my blog!

http://www.christiegardiner.com/october-1-where-would-you-live-myperfectday/ and then join us on our facebook page and see if you already have your #myperfectday !

Live your Beautiful Life!
-Christie

 

Christie Gardiner is a mother, a wife, a radio show host, an actor, a singer, a teacher, a writer, a yogi and a lover of "all the things."  She loves working on the board of her NPO, survivorsARE.org, and spending time with her family.  Read More of her writing at http://www.christiegardiner.com .

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Fifty Days As a Foolish Virgin



It all started innocently enough. Some friends invited me to hike Mount Timpanogos (a grueling 12-hour, seven-mile hike to the summit of our tallest nearby peak.) I have wanted to do that for years! But we had an open house scheduled for my daughter that weekend, and my house wasn’t clean enough to be spending a full day in the mountains beforehand. Also, I hadn’t trained. I’d been walking/hiking nearly every day this past summer, but short, fun hikes—nothing that would prepare me for an ascent like Timp. So I declined.

Just a week or so later I was walking into our cousin’s wedding, only to be told that I couldn’t enter. I glanced down, and sure enough my recommend had expired. (This was a Mormon wedding, where the couple is not just married until “death do us part,” but sealed for all eternity in one of our sacred temples. Only those with recommends can enter and attend.) I was worthy, but had failed to take the final two steps—be interviewed by my ecclesiastical leaders. Feeling incredibly foolish, I sat out the ceremony in the lobby.

Fast-forward to last week. I had a painting accepted into the Utah Watercolor Society’s Fall Exhibition. This is one of my favorite paintings I’ve done in a while and I was excited to see it framed and hanging in a gallery. This time I made sure to allow a few weeks for framing, so I could order custom materials rather than settling for what was in stock. I chose the most expensive museum glass so it would be expertly protected. I made arrangements for my son to deliver the painting for me (he lives in Salt Lake). This time I would not be foolish.

Then our son cancelled his trip to our house, so I was back to square one. Feeling flexible and quick on my feet, I arranged for my husband to drop off the painting when he went to Salt Lake the next day. He would just have to leave a little early. Perfect. I had a relaxing day with my family, and when it was approaching time for my husband to leave, I pulled up the email with delivery instructions for the show to give him the address.

As I read through the email I discovered something alarming. The delivery cut-off was an hour earlier than I’d thought. There was no way to get the painting to Salt Lake in time. I was out of the show. My painting was finished, framed, but I failed to deliver. So you will not be seeing this painting at the Visual Art Institute in Salt Lake City this weekend. Why? Because I’m a Foolish Virgin. I’ve been a Foolish Virgin for 50 straight days without even realizing it.

In the Bible, Jesus tells the allegory of the Ten Virgins—five who are wise, and five who are foolish. The wise virgins have their lamps filled, their wicks trimmed, and when the bridegroom comes, they follow him into his chambers. The foolish virgins haven’t prepared their lamps, and they make a futile attempt to borrow oil from the five who were prepared. In the meantime, the doors are locked and they are left outside.

There is a reason Jesus calls himself "Author and Finisher of our Salvation." It turns out that finishing is a pretty big deal. And a lot of the time, it's a deal-breaker.

In each scenario above, I had done most of the work, gone through most of the process, and was just missing one or two simple steps at the end. I had some oil in my vessel. Just not quite enough. But I had some very real, somewhat painful experiences where I was left out, shut out, locked out. There were no exceptions. The finishing had to be done by the appointed hour.

Who do I WANT to be? An avid hiker. a summiter. The hostess with the mostest. A loving and supportive wedding guest. An artist in a show. What’s stopping me? My own inability to finish things.

Thank heaven The Living Room has recorded a show this week called, “Who Do You Want To Be…And What’s Stopping You?” This foolish virgin will be not just listening in, but taking notes.

—Jana

#livingroomwithjana

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Homework Tips That WORK!

School is underway and with the classroom comes homework. With homework can come a hassle. Is there a struggle every weekday trying to get your kids to get things done? If there is, it is totally normal. 50% of parents fight with their kids every night over homework.

I have a few basic reminders for you that will ease the homework pain.

Be realistic. We care more about their homework than our kids do. We know its importance because we have age and wisdom under our belt. We have to be realistic and understand that they just can't possibly get it to the same degree we do. We also need to be realistic when it comes to the time they spend doing homework. Our children don't need to sit in front of homework all.night.long. In fact, more is not necessarily better. Be realistic with homework time. A good rule of thumb is 10 minutes of homework for each grade your child is in. So a third grader should spend 30 minutes each night on homework. If you sense that your children are spending too much time on homework, it could be that they are getting distracted or more likely that they don't understand the subject. Not understanding would be a totally different situation than refusing to do work because they want to play video games.

Avoid the power struggles. We can't make our kids do something, but we can control how we act and what WE say and do. We need to set appropriate expectations, consequences, and make sure we have a homework environment that is conducive for our children. If they choose not to study, we make sure the consequences are upheld. If homework time everyday is miserable our kids will not want to study. We need to do our best to keep the situation positive.

Schedule daily homework time and location. Homework should be done at the same time everyday, and in the same place. Make it clear that this time is mandatory, even when your kids don't have something due the next day. If there is nothing specific for your child to do, they can work on a skill where they are a little weak, study for an upcoming test, or get ahead on their work. Location should be clutter free and distraction free.  NO electronics, or other distractions.

Be available. No one likes to be all alone. By simply being in the same room as our children, we make homework fights less likely. This doesn't mean we do their homework for them, but instead we are available in case they have questions. Even better, sit down at the same time as your kids and quietly work on something also. You could read, study something of your own, draw, anything. But make it your "study" time also.

Be consistent. Consistency is vital to homework success especially as you are establishing patterns. If we tell our children that 4:30 every day is homework time but let them off the hook three days a week because they want to play with the neighbors, we have just sent the message that we are not really that serious. There will be time later on to make exceptions, but establish the patterns first and be consistent with them. We also need to be consistent with the consequences. If we say that our kids can't watch TV until their homework is done, we need to stick to that. Research shows that kids who are consistent with studying and getting their homework done are more successful in school and in life.

Use privileges. Explain to your kids that there are many privileges that will be their's if they do their homework. When homework is done it means they can play with friends, use electronics, ride bikes, etc.... whatever it is they love, they can do once their work is done.

Stick with the basics when it comes to homework struggles and you will see positive changes in your child's behavior. Study skills are life skills and helping our children understand their importance will go a long way for them in the future.


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Improving Your Prayers

On a four-wheeling trip up to Paris Springs in Cache National Forest, our family stopped at a trail to hike.  We walked the length of three football fields, along a river, so we could see the exact spot where the natural spring was emerging from the mountainside.  Even though we’d visited Paris Springs many times before, seeing it that day took my breath away.  I could see the constant movement of refreshing, so-clean-you-could-drink-it H2O flowing freely from a fist-size hole in the rock.  It amazed me!  I knew the spring’s source was deep underground, and, yet, I couldn’t see it.  The water pouring out of the mountain was proof that the spring existed.  That experience reminds me that even though we can't see the source of our spiritual strength, it’s always there. 

Jesus Christ is my higher power.  He offers all human beings living water.  We drink of His living water when we pray.  His cup is filled with goodness and he desires all to receive it.  Prayer channels His goodnesswhich then fills our souls with the enabling power of his grace, a power I know I need daily to face my challenges.  Prayer helps anyone seeking for peace to find peace.  As words are uttered in the name of Jesus Christ troubled hearts become calm.  Oh, how I need His goodness and his grace!  

Lately, I’ve tried to be more engaging when I pray.  I've tried to talk more sincerely to my Heavenly Father so that I may feel Christ’s grace pouring out upon me. I’ve tried to think about being more vulnerable, faithful, and humble in asking for heaven’s help, and it’s made a difference in how I feel and how I receive the impressions of the spirit.  

My walk to Paris Springs last summer will help me remember that Christ’s goodness flows freely.  That although I can't see him, I know he is the source of true spiritual strength and that strength can be accessed through prayer.  I want more than anything to continue to improve my prayers so that I may receive all the goodness he has to give me. 

How could you make your prayer experience more meaningful? 

Email me at jodimarierobinson (at) gmail (dot) com.

#thelivingroom

www.fromthelivingroom.com

www.shareloveserve.com   

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Starting Your Day The Right Way

In our show "Self-Care and Preservation" we shared a lot of tips that busy women can use to fill their own wells.  One practice that I shared in detail is called the Power Up & Power Down Routines.  This practice is an important part of bringing peace in my busy world, but because it’s so powerful and so important I wanted to share it for you here in detail.

The Power Up and Power Down Routine is a must for anywone who wants more out of life. Just like airline passengers are instructed to put on their own oxygen masks before helping those around them, busy and driven people know they must take care of themselves in a nurturing and energizing way that brings order, clarity and peace. It’s easier to handle the stresses of the day when you start with a full tank. If you’re a peak performer running on empty because you never have time for yourself, the Power Up and Power Down routine will help you begin and end each day with you. You’ll start with a full well of love and nourishment that you can share with others because you have filled your own first.

I can’t take credit for coming up with this idea in it’s basic form, but I’ve tested and tried it in a few ways, and I feel passionate that I pass along the way I’ve implemented it as one of my favorite and most effective success practices.

Perhaps you’ve already heard of a “Power Hour.” It’s basically an hour in the morning full of planning, reading, and preparing for the day. After reading about this practice a few years ago, I realized that since I was 12 I’d been doing something similar—the fifteen minutes of morning planning recommended by Franklin Day Planner. Eventually stretched that time to an hour. When I made a commitment in 2011 to do it with regularity, it changed my life.

Later that year I started coaching with Tiffany Peterson. She introduced me to her “Morning and Evening Ritual,” which added even more focus to my routine.

I’ve combined and modified all of these philosophies to create what I call the Power Up and Power Down routine. I like the energy around starting my day with positive re-charge and putting body and mind to sleep at the end of the day. As we’ll discuss in the PHYSICAL HEALTH chapter, sleep is such a crucial part of our peak performance abilities, and preparing your body and mind for that is important. The Power Down helps me quiet my thoughts and put my world (and my brain) to bed.

POWER UP
In the morning, before I do anything else, I get my heart rate up with some physical exercise. Sometimes this is a little walk around the house to get a glass of water, or sometimes it’s some jumping jacks. Anything will do, really. I usually do my full workout after I’ve been up for a while, so this is a simple movement to wake me up physically and mentally.

After my physical activity, I review my goals, listen to my Ideal LifeVision, look over my vision board, and flip through my “Why” cards. I think about my husband and kids individually, and get centered on how I can show up for them. I read something inspirational or motivational, and then meditate and pray. This gets me ready to face the day.

An important thing I learned from Tiffany was that this doesn’t have to take a whole hour. If your time is limited, it can be fifteen minutes, or you can spend more time if you have it. The key is to do it before any other distractions enter your day. That means you do it even before logging in to Facebook or checking your email, because those things take you into other people’s issues, questions, and drama. If you have children, it’s best to do it before they wake up so you have some quiet time that doesn’t involve their agendas.

POWER DOWN
At the end of the day, I start my Power Down routine by writing five things I’m grateful for in my gratitude journal. Next I review my schedule for the following day so I don’t end up lying in bed wondering what time my dentist appointment is, or if my meeting with a key client got moved. Then, I read a little for business and a little for pleasure before I close my day with something inspirational to reconnect me to my Source.

It’s important to do all of this in a technology-free zone so the brightness and images aren’t burning into your brain right before you go to bed. Turn off your laptop and stop looking at your Instagram feed. You’ll rest easier when you steer clear of it before bed.



My Power Down routine always happens, but I sometimes notice after a vacation (or even a long weekend when I’ve slept in), it’s easy for me to fall out of the habit of my Power Up routine. However, I can always tell the difference in how my day runs when I miss it. If I wait until the phone rings or my kids are awake to start my day, I feel like I’m always a step behind, and so it doesn’t take long for me to get back in the habit.

Like all success practices, it’s important not to throw in the towel if you have a hard time implementing this new routine, or even if you sometimes forget to do it. Keep at it so you can see the long-term benefits. It’s worth it. It’s true, you’ll probably have to get up earlier than you used to, but since you’re putting your brain to bed well, you should sleep better and wake up more energized and ready to embrace the day, despite the earlier time. Be committed to you and make the appointments with yourself morning and night non-negotiable.

I challenge you to give the Power Up & Power Down Routine a try!  Try it for 3 weeks and see what changes.  I'd love to hear what you think!  Email me at michelle (at) speakmichelle (dot) com I can't wait to hear your results!

To your happiness & success!

Michelle

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. She's also the Amazon.com Bestselling Author of the book Make It Happen. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Raising Children Who Contribute

About this Show:

In a society that enables and even encourages entitlement, how does this affect our children? How does it influence their perception of work ethic, self-motivation, and genuine give-back contribution? Join us today in discussing what principles and practices have worked in our life experience, and how we can positively apply or adjust in raising our children.

Download this: Show: http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-09-29.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Today's Quote:

“It is not what you do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings.” –Ann Landers

Reccomendations from today's show:

Three Tools to Build a Sacred Home-https://www.lds.org/liahona/2007/07/three-tools-to-build-a-sacred-home?lang=eng

Jana’s Mom’s quote: “Never be afraid of a dirty job, you can always wash your hands.”

 

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If You Give a Kid a Cookie, He'll Want a Lego

While I was reading Parenting with Love and Logic, my seven-year-old pored over his Lego magazine.  "Hey," he shouted, "this Lego is only eighty dollars."

Really? "Only eighty dollars," I repeated.  Understanding but undeterred, minutes later he shouted "Hey!  This one is only forty dollars and that's cheaper."  Understanding but undeterred, I followed Love and Logic advice:  validate his vision.

"Wow," I said, "that is a neat battering ram."  I smiled.  I didn't squelch his dream with something like "Are you kidding mister?  When I was your age I got a hand-me-down Barbie with one go-go-boot and no arms so don't come crying to me with your Lego troubles."

That said, I went for the Love and Logic kill.  "Son," I smiled, "how do you want to earn that Lego?"  He stared as if I was speaking Swahili.  Translating, I enlightened him on a few economic factors; a day job, three months of piano lessons, etc.  In reply, he pulled out a cookie recipe, two eggs, and expensive vanilla.  With the self-made cookies and a neighbor partner he went door-to-door while I walked inconspicuously behind.  After 45 minutes they were sold out with six dollars in change.  He and his friend subtracted one dollar for ingredients and, through serious negotiations, split the remainder.

Past generations feared illnesses such as chicken pox and influenza because it caused physical death.  In our current gimme-now generation-not parents of course-children suffer an ethereal illness; namely, irresponsibility, which brings motivational death.

Authors Cline and Fay state "to help children gain responsibility, we must offer that child opportunities to be responsible."  Unwittingly, we as loving parents who experienced sacrifice, now sacrifice not the money but the opportunity, the growth gained from desperately wanting and determinedly doing.

This is not child labor or throwing kids in a pool and yelling swim.  To wit, we equally matched my son's earnings and accompanied him on the next cookie outing-five of us on the four-wheeler, inconspicuously. No matter the form, a parent's contribution says, "I believe you will succeed."

Giving back the responsibility takes follow-through and selectivity; not every item is buy-it-yourself.  You'll know a special item when it's all they talk about, think about, and whine about.  They don't whine about bagels.  Involve them by asking responsibility-giving questions:  what can you make/do/sell to earn the money?  Talk it through, enthusiastically, and why not?  This is your possible future retirement at stake.

In a confusing move, my son used his cookie money to buy our family pizza.  He said it made him happy.  And that he wanted mom and dad to have more money to buy him a bike.  Possible future retirement.

Hugs,

Connie

More at www.conniesokol.com

#livingroomconnie

#TLRshow

#back2basics

 

 

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MY BROTHERS THE IRONMEN.

Recently, I traveled to St. George, Utah to watch the Ironman 70.3. All five of my brothers ranging in age from 31 to 48 were competitors. My second oldest brother, Eric has dreamed and pushed for this to happen for years.
Eric, completed his first full Ironman a couple of years ago with the assistance of my middle brother Jon. Jon is a fierce competitor and fits the mold of Ironman completely.
The other three brothers had little interest in ever doing an Ironman or anything close to it and it took much convincing on Eric’s end, but eventually and somewhat reluctantly they each gave in.
As the oldest and the least in shape we all knew this would be the hardest for Bob as did he.    
Various members of our extended family had come in support of the boys. We watched anxiously at different points along the route for each of the brothers to pass. As we expected, Jon was the first one we spotted. He stopped on his bike briefly to chat with us. He both looked and felt great. Jeff was next. We cheered loudly as he gave a wave and biked on. My Dad was further down the road and let us know that Jordan had passed and was doing great. With each sighting of the boys, our relief grew that each was OK, yet still we waited for Eric and Bob. Over an hour passed and finally Bob rode by with Eric right behind him. Eric spotted us, sat back on his bike and pointed proudly at Bob with a huge grin at which point Bob yelled, “I own this!”
We screamed and cheered louder than we had before.
We continued to watch and cheer as we saw each of the brothers pass along the route; first with the swim, then with the bike and finally as they ran straight up a mountain at the start of the run portion-the last and hardest obstacle for each of them to conquer.
As the sun rose and the hours passed Jon, Jeff and Jordan finally crossed the finish line hands linked and held high over their head at 1:41 pm.
Our elation was short lived however as still we worried about Eric and Bob. They had slowed down significantly for Bob’s benefit. The cut off was 4:33. Our hearts dropped when we saw that their projected time on the Internet tracker was 4:40. If Bob and Eric didn’t cross the line at 4:33, they would not medal. Every one of us knew Eric would not leave Bob’s side, but ultimately it would be Bob that would go through Hell physically and mentally to make it. It wouldn’t be the only time Bob had fought his way out of Hell. This would be especially monumental for him. Along with us, his wife and kids, waited with unwavering encouragement and emotion as the hours continued to pass and we knew they were still out there struggling in the intense heat.
Bob’s daughter, Rachel could take it no longer and she began to run up the course in search of her Dad. Bob had just begged Eric to give him one minute to rest. When Rachel found him, Eric looked straight at Bob as he pushed him forward, “Don’t you dare disappoint your daughter. We do not have a minute. Go.” 
At 4:20 Rachel ran down to us shouting, “they’re coming” and it rallied our crowd of spectators that had come to cheer for their, husband, father, son, brother, nephew, cousin and friend.
Emotions ran high as we watched two brothers- coming slowly down the road. One, just trying to make it to the end, the other pushing him on just as he had done for 8 straight hours- three hours longer than it would have taken him to finish on his own. 
The definition of “Iron” is a ductile, malleable material, scarcely known in a pure condition.
Each of my brothers have overcome obstacles; a traumatic brain injury from a previous bike accident, not being able to have children, addiction, financial loss and much more. When each had gone through their consecutive trials, the other four were there to say words of encouragement, walk by their side and lend aide, but mostly to push them to keep going when all they wanted to do was quit.
Iron is also defined as something, strong, rigid and unyielding. 
As Eric and Bob inched closer to the chute, the other three brothers, who had previously finished joined them. This time all five brothers linked arms and crossed the finish line together at 4:29:32. The words “Roses never quit” seen on their jerseys.
My brothers are finishers. My brothers are “iron” men.  

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book. . . look for it in four years.  

Read more of Kate's writings at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com
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Choose to be Amused

 

About this Show:

In today's show we talk about life moments that could have derailed us but instead, we chose to laugh. Learn from our personal experiences how approaching tough situations with humor, and the choice to see it that way, can make all the difference in our own lives and those we love. 

Choose to be amused: How responding with humor to difficult and frustrating situations makes all the difference.

Download this Show:

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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Today's Quote:

Recommendations from our show:

Sophie Scott Ted talk. Laughter to Connect:https://www.ted.com/talks/sophie_scott_why_we_laugh?language=en

Kate's Book: A Half Fast Memoir or go to www. momentsofchunder.blogspot.com and click on the image on the sidebar.

 

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Seeing Your Spouse

About this Show:

Struggling to really "see your spouse" and love them for who they are? Join us for today's show as we explore WHY we loose site of the one we love and how we can see them in 20/20 again. We will help you remember all the wonderful reasons you married your spouse in the first place!

Download this Show: http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-09-15.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Recommendations from our show: 

BOOKS: 

“Leadership and Self deception” The Arbinger Institute.

 

“Don’t sweat the small stuff series.” Richard Carlson

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Seeing Your Spouse - Supporting His Hobbies

One of my husband’s many hobbies is bike racing.  Once snowmobiling season ends, he trades in his motorized sled for a road bike.  He wakes up before the sun rises. He rides 25-35 miles a day with his bike-racing-pack, before going to work.  On weekends, he rises early, too.  On Saturday, he’s willing to finish a fifty to a one-hundred-mile ride before getting busy with family and home.  Something I’ve learned from being married to a man with recreational hobbies is how important it is to love and support what he loves to do.  It certainly makes for a happier spouse and a happier marriage. 

On a recent “Living Room” show called “Seeing Your Spouse,” my co-hosts and I discussed the importance of staying in love with the man you fell in love with.  I’ll add my contribution here and say that supporting your spouse’s hobbies can bring both partners joy and satisfaction. 

My husband and I married in our early twenties.  Back then, he didn't own a road bike with pedals, but he had a motorcycle.  And snow skis.  And water skis.  And fly rods.  He came with  an appetite for anything with a motor or anything involving the out-of-doors.  Thank goodness I was open to adventure, because marriage to such an active guy has been an adventure!  I married who I married.  And although I didn’t know when I said “I do” exactly what I’d be saying “I do” to?  I've learned "I do" would mean that "I would" go ice fishing, snowmobiling, rock climbing, camping, hiking, biking, building, waterskiing, fourwheeling, and waverunnig.  Saying "I do" meant I WOULD ride a snowmobile in minus 10 degree weather up a Cache Valley mountain covered in four feet of powder.  To me that hill might as well have been Mount Kilimanjaro!  But I said, "I do" which meant when the time came I would try it.  And guess what?  

I loved it!      

Recently, my husband and his friend Evan raced in one of the country’s premiere bike races, LOTOGA.  It’s a two-hundred and five mile journey, pedaling through mountains and valleys, a distance from Logan, Utah to Jackson, Wyoming.  I was my husband's road support along with his biking buddy's wife, Peggy.  Together, Peggy and I enjoyed driving to and from the rest stops to provide our spouses with calorie-filled snacks.  Trust me when I say snacking on Peanut M&M’s while driving through the beautiful mountainsides, while our guys huffed and puffed for twelve hours on a bike seat the size of your palm.  Let's just say Peggy and I had the the better end of the deal!  

At the finish line, Evan, whose been married to his wife for almost 35 years said, looking at me, putting his fist to his heart, “When I see Peggy at the finish line it just hits me in the heart.  It means so much to me having her here.” 

Jodi and Peggy at LOTOGA --Support Team-- for their spouse's 205 mile bike race

Evan's comment pretty much sums up why spouses should love what their spouses LOVE TO DO!

Because having us there with them means that you really “see” him.  And even if he doesn't say it verbally.  Trust me. You're being there...means the world to him. 

P.S.  If my husband’s hobby was alligator hunting, I’d have a totally different opinion.   

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

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FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

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Awaken YOUR soul with gratitude! Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

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When the Worst Possible Thing...Actually Isn't

Last Tuesday the Living Room reran one of our earlier episodes, called What I Gained When I Lost. As I listened a second time, it reminded me of an experience I had back in high school:

It was the audition for Concerto Night, a competition amongst my musical peers for a chance to perform in the spotlight with a live orchestra (the high school orchestra, but still, a pretty big deal). I had been studying and practicing this particular concerto, the Beethoven I, for over a year and a half. I had all 28 pages thoroughly memorized, backwards and forwards, they were polished, and perfected. I even had two amazing master classes with concert pianist Grant Johannessen. I was ready. Except for a tiny little problem I have called Performance Anxiety.

It turned out that my cousin’s wedding reception, in which I was a bridesmaid, was the same night as the concerto competition. I slipped out of the reception line a few minutes early, and my mother and I raced our car through the slushy city streets, arriving at the A cappella room just in time for one of the last remaining audition slots. I sat there, wringing and shaking my hands to warm them up after being out in the brisk February air.

They called my name. I stood up in my burgundy velvet bridesmaid dress, took a deep breath, and walked to the piano. All eyes were on me. The room was deathly quiet. I sat down, adjusted the bench, uttered a silent prayer for help, and nodded to my mom, who was playing the orchestra score on the second piano, to let her know I was ready. I’ve never been more ready for anything in my life.

I listened for the opening chords, then attacked my entrance with confidence and aplomb. The runs were rapid and crystal-clear. My fingers were flying fast over the arpeggios. I was off! Then  about halfway through the concerto, in a section that I knew so well I could play it in my sleep, I hit a wrong note.

It completely threw me off. I couldn’t find the next note, or the one after that. That passage I could play in my sleep suddenly became my worst nightmare. Flustered, I went back to a section where I could start over. When I got to the exact same spot I panicked again and couldn’t find the note.  I began again a third time, and eventually muddled my way through to the end. The finish was big and dramatic. But I knew I’d completely blown the audition.

I was devastated. Everything I worked on so diligently for over a year and a half suddenly seemed all for nothing. My dreams of playing with the school orchestra were shattered. I didn’t have to wait for the judges’ decision; I knew. I couldn’t even look anyone in the eye as I trudged back to my car in the snow. My mom was powerless to console me. God had let me down. My prayers hadn’t reached him…or they got His answering machine!

I stepped completely away from the piano and didn’t touch it again for 18 months. I couldn’t stand to be part of an art where you could perfect something, and still have it go abysmally wrong on the final performance. I thought about my writing, where you perfect a story or an essay, submit it to a contest, and win a scholarship. I thought about my artwork, and how you perfect a painting, put it in a frame and hang it up on a wall. It stays that way. Everyone who walks by can see it, just as you intended it to be.

I decided right then and there that I was going to major in art. For my creative sanity. I would create pieces and frame them and hang them. Period. No risk of the final product gone awry.

Looking back on that moment—where it seemed like the worst thing that could possibly happen had just found me and dragged me down to the abyss—from my current mid-life vantage point, God didn’t abandon me at all. He used that moment to nudge me with a course-correction. He was being kind. And even a little bit generous. To let me discover my career path early, rather than after several other failed attempts. In retrospect, the demise of my piano-playing future signaled the birth of who I was really meant to be.

What I gained when I lost? Was my better self.

 

—Jana

#livingroomwithjana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. She writes at divergentpathways.blogspot.com and exhibits her work at janaparkin.com.

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Why Did I Make an Apple Pie?

Recently, we bought an older home. It was owned by the same owners for almost 50 years. The couple who had raised their family there had recently passed on within months of each other. Their daughter was selling their home and we could see that it was very difficult for her. Trying to make it somewhat easier on her, I told her to please come back anytime she or her siblings wanted to see the home. 

 

The house has an apple and a plum tree in the backyard and my family was delighted to eat the delicious fruit. After being in the home close to a year, I noticed that there were just a few apples left on the apple tree. I picked all the remaining apples and brought them inside.

The plums had multiplied and we had more than we knew what to do with. My husband came up with the idea of turning them into juice and syrup.

Staring at the apples on the counter, I wondered what to do with all of them when I suddenly had the idea to make a pie. I’m not a big pie maker and frankly I don’t love apple pie, but the thought wouldn’t leave me.

I had other things to do that day and I left the apples on the counter. The next day the thought came again and again on the third day. Finally, I gave in. I pulled a recipe from the Internet for the crust and then tried to figure out how in the world to make a filling. Opening the fridge to get some butter, I noticed the plum syrup and decided since I didn’t know what I was doing anyway, I’d experiment. 

I put the apples and plum syrup in a big bowl and stirred them together before dumping them into the crust I had just made. 

Covering the top of the pie with dough, I noticed I had a bit left over. I shaped the leftover dough into an apple-shaped heart and placed it carefully on top of the dough right in the center. I rolled my eyes and laughed at what I had done, wondering once again why I had made a pie that none of us would eat. Grabbing a Ziploc freezer bag, I put the entire pie inside the bag, sealed it up and placed it in the freezer.

A couple of days later my phone rang. It was the daughter who had sold us the home. 

“Kate, would you mind if my daughter, my sister and I came by to see the house?”

I told her that of course we didn’t.

She informed me that they would be stopping by the graveyard first to visit their mother’s grave.

A few hours later they came. I noticed that as they walked through the house they grew up in, they became increasingly weepy. I excused myself to give them some time alone. 

A little while later I returned when they were about to leave. 

“I’m so sorry," the daughter told me. "It’s actually Mom’s birthday today and we didn’t realize how hard this would be.”

I smiled sympathetically and nodded. As they made their way to the door, I suddenly realized something.

Running to the freezer, I grabbed the homemade pie, remembering how the daughter had told me their mother had loved to cook and spent countless hours in that kitchen.

“Here,” I said as I handed the pie to the daughter. “This is an apple pie made with apples from the apple tree and plum syrup from the other. I had no idea why in the world I kept feeling like I should make it, but now I understand.” 

I smiled at the three women. 

“I think your mom wanted me to make it for you. She must have known you’d come on her birthday and you’d need it.” 

As I shut the door I smiled, grateful that I had listened to a thought that told me to make a pie that was never intended for me. 

read the orginal article @ www.ksl.com

 

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book. . . look for it in four years.  

Read more of Kate's writings at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com

 

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Living a Beautiful Life

 

[An excerpt from Motherhood Matters, by Connie E. Sokol]

"Playdough is scattered all over the counter. Bikes are strewn in the driveway, hopscotch drawings and bits of colored chalk litter the yard. All are joyful evidences that you are a mother.

And, you can still live an aesthetically beautiful life.

Treasure the small beauties and things that are lovely, praiseworthy or of good report. Use the nice dishes. Buy a small pot of flowers for your bedside. Each week I buy flowers for our kitchen table and look for plump, ripe fruit for the baskets. The pleasure in a perfectly ripe peach cannot be measured!

Take a moment during your week to savor the beautiful things in daily life.

Pretty placemats (easy clean are still beautiful) or a new set of glasses (that actually match, imagine!) Paper napkins add a nice touch, and even a special juice or sparkling cider with dinner.

Make your own loveliness. One woman painted a gorgeous scene on the inside of her modest brick home. Another woman used a "survival" bottle-stuffing extra money in an empty bottle and burying it for needed joy in a future time of desperation.

Find small beauties and enjoy them. Use scented candles in the entry way or lavender bath salts after a long day.

Yes, you're busy. Yes, the house looks as if children live there. Terrific. Now add to it your sparkle, your item of pop or loveliness that reminds you how beautiful life truly is."

Hugs,

Connie

Connect with me at www.conniesokol.com or #fromthelivingroomconnie

 

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Getting Your Children To Talk To You


School has started in these parts and three of our 6 kids are in school all day. Lots of things happen during school and I am always excited to hear about all that has gone on when they get home. Not to mention staying in the loop with homework, events, upcoming activities, etc...

Our daughter is great about communicating and telling me all about her day, but our son, he is tight lipped, and although he likes to talk, isn't very good at the "how was your day"? questions.

So, what can we do when our kids don't want to talk? Here are 7 suggestions to help get your kids talking.

First, Don't put your kids on the witness stand! It is natural as parents to immediately ask our kids questions about their day, AS SOON as they walk in the door or climb in the car after school. But... just like adults, they could use some time to unwind, and don't like feeling interrogated the second they get home. Asking all the questions can feel like force, and won't make them talk. If they do talk the answers are often, "fine...good...sure." Not what we are looking for. So instead of starting the questioning the second they get home,  just express your gratitude and excitement to see them and give things some time.

Second, Make sure the time is right.  It is very common for our kids to each communicate differently. For example, when our daughter climbs in the car after school she is already giving me a play-by-play about her day. I am not kidding, she doesn't leave out a single detail. Every second of the day is accounted for. She needs to talk right away, get things explained and communicated. Now, our son who is 8th grade is totally different. He is a "I want to talk later" communicator. He doesn't have much to say right away, but if I give him a few hours and some space, by the end of the day, and even throughout the next two days, he will tell me all about what is going on without me even asking! The time just has to be right for him. As parents, it is important that we understand the communication time frame for each of our children. We will see much more success that way.

Third, One question at a time. When the time comes to ask our kids questions about things that are going on at school or in life, we tend to hit them with more than one question at the same time. For example..."how was soccer practice and did you finish your homework"? Although both are valid questions, asking them, without listening to the answer to the first one, can overwhelm our children, and also gives them the impression that we don't really care about their answers because we won't stay quiet long enough to listen. Only ask one question at a time. Then pause and let your child answer. Don't cut them off, or cut them short. Once they are done, move on to question number 2.

Fourth, Be at the crossroads. Be available. When at all possible, try to be at the crossroads of your children's day. Before school, after school, when they come home between practice and piano, at dinner. Don't be there to interrogate, just be there, available, so that if your children want to talk, they know where to find you and that your ears will be ready. Another great way to be available is to spend 15 uninterrupted minutes with each of your children each day.

Fifth, we have two ears and one mouth. LISTEN TWICE AS MUCH AS YOU TALK! Yes, the old saying is true. If we want our kids to talk to us, we have to stop talking and start listening. That goes for any of our relationships.

Sixth, Be active together. One of the best places to talk to our kids, is while DOING something together. Find an activity, sport, anything that you both enjoy, and do it together. It will put the focus on something besides talking and ironically enough, talking will happen. Go for a hike, paint a picture, anything, together.

Seventh, Be yourself. Our children will not understand how to talk/share about their day if we don't show them. We need to tell our children about our day, fill them in, teach them how to express themselves and they will learn from our example. We need to be open (appropriate open) so that they will be open with us.

Getting our kids to open up to us can be hard, but with a few thoughtful steps and reminders, we can make the situation comfortable for them, and before we know it, they will be talking up a storm.

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Trust the Process

“To teach well...is to make a difference. To teach unusually well is to create magic.”  — Kay Redfield Jamison, Exuberance, the Passion for Life

 

There is something so invigorating about a new school year. It brings whispers of things to come, there is excitement in the air, and the classroom is buzzing with potential.

 I love the line in the movie “You’ve Got Mail” where Tom Hanks tells Meg Ryan this time of year makes him want to buy up “bouquets of sharpened pencils.” YES! That’s it. A sharp pencil, a crisp sheet of paper...a clean slate. They all have something in common: the welcome of creativity, an opportunity to begin again.

I started school again on Monday, my 12th year as an adjunct art professor. I walked into a classroom full of strangers that I know will soon be my friends. I felt that familiar flicker of potential and saw combinations of joy, anticipation and horror on my students’ faces. The reality is, what we do in Watercolor 1 may look easy, but it can be terrifying. The assignments are designed to take everybody wwaaaayyy outside of their comfort zone. To try new things. To surrender control. To let the water do the work.

I have a formula for success that I’ve discovered applies just as much to life as it does to the classroom. Consider: 

1. Show up. 

Come to class, every time, on time. Bring all the necessary materials.

Be fully engaged the entire time. None of the magic that happens in class can be found on youtube or in a textbook. Demonstrations happen live and in real time. Everything we do is personally directed and hands-on. Missing that instruction and interaction comes with a very high opportunity cost.

2. Do the work. 

Complete all the assigned work on time. Stay caught up. There is no busywork in this class. Every assignment builds on the last and prepares you for the next one. I will not require any wasted efforts. Give each exercise your complete focus and your very best efforts.

3. Trust the process.

Sometimes we do things in class that are scary and hard. Many of these assignments are designed to take you WAY outside your comfort zone. It takes courage to try new approaches. Be brave! Especially important: When what you’re painting looks nothing like the image you have in your head, please trust the instructor, and the process being taught. Continue working through the process, despite the fuzz and the fog and maybe even some messiness. It will eventually turn out if you follow the instructions. In fact, it will most likely become something far more interesting and beautiful than you initially imagined.

Woody Allen said that "80% of success is showing up." And most of us readily agree that doing our best work is a chief source of personal fulfillment—whether we are paid or not. But the part that seems to be the most challenging—both in life and in the classroom—is learning to trust the process.

After 12 years of college-level teaching, something that has become abundantly clear to me is the importance of trusting in a mentor, a higher power. Just knowing that God is in charge of the universe helps to make sense of the chaos and upheaval of life—especially the murky parts. Not just believing, but really trusting—that His word is Truth, that He loves us and has our best interests at heart, that He knows something maybe we don't, and that He can turn the worst cataclysm into something better is ultimately key to our survival and success.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

This promise is rock solid. It takes trust to leave our comfort zone, to try new things, to surrender control, to let the Spirit do the work. But we prosper so much under his care and tutelage. and turn out to be far more interesting and beautiful a soul than we ever could have managed on our own.

One of the great things about teaching and observing the learning continuum year after year is that we continue to learn so much about the universe and ourselves in the process.

—Jana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. See her artwork at janaparkin.com. #livingroomwithJana

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Transitioning from Summer to Fall -- Three Must Do's

Transitioning from summer to fall signals kids are back to school.  Some parents cheer at the sight of backpacks, school lunches, and homework and burst into a hallelujah chorus in the carpool line.  But for others—like me—kids in the classroom, at least in the beginning weeks, means a quiet and empty house that hums a varied rendition of back-to-school-blues. 

If saying goodbye to the crazy, lazy days at the pool, lounging on the cool grass after the sun goes down, and sleeping in and staying up late feels a bit like a funeral instead of a celebration, don’t worry. 

You’re not alone. 

Psychologist Deanna Pledge says some parents need to work "very consciously to reinvent [themselves] without [their children being] at the center of their universe." (That would be me.)

In contemplating my dilemma of, in a few short years, ultimately transitioning myself out of a job, and since figuring out who to be post motherhood is too big of a topic to discuss here, I have three simple suggestions to help make a smoother transition from summer to fall.  

1.      Say YES to learning something new.  Whether it’s yoga, a cooking class, a new skill, or a volunteer position, commit to saying YES to doing what will make you happy.  That’s top of my list.  Summer is about the kids.  Let the fall be about you!  Back to the books for them is about learning, so make time to learn something new, too.  I made a list of ten things I want to learn to do.  I chose three of them to focus on for now, and I’m so excited to begin!  Hopefully, I’ll move through my entire list as time goes by. 

 2.      Say NO to what’s not working.  Why waste time doing something you’ve always done just because you’ve always done it?  Some health issues have challenged me during the past six months, and I’ve had to take a step back and slowly add things back onto my to-do list.  Before I decided what to say NO to, I'd carefully evaluate how each “to-do” made me feel.  And asked myself if it fit into my overall life goals.  I realized my goals needed some tweaking.  There were things I needed to let go of.  And I’m learning that’s okay.  After a while, transitioning into the open space of possibility is liberating!  Because saying NO to the things that don’t work for you leaves you time and space to say. YES to what does and will work best for you and your family.  

Finally, the third thing I suggest: 

3.      Carve out time each week to do something you LOVE!  First on my list—as simple as it sounds—is to read several books I’ve put off reading for one reason or another.  One book I’m almost finished with is The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Elle Luna.  It’s delightfully illustrated with water color and presents a thoughtful message about what you SHOULD do verses what you MUST do.  And let me clarify that the MUST do’s are the “do it or I’ll die because I LOVE it so much” kind of must-do’s.  Living this way forces you to stop and think what’s a should and what’s a must.  Simply carving out time to read a book and contemplate and ponder the universe.  Aaaahhhh!  That just feels sooooo nice.  Decide what time you can set aside to do something you LOVE each week!  It doesn’t have to be the same activity each week, either.  Lunch with an old friend.  Bike ride.  Quilt.  Paint.  DIY.  Build.  Write.  Plant.  Cook.  But not because you have to but because you want to.  You get the idea.  As for the other books I’m reading, I’ll mention another time.  (Hey, isn't this what me and my Co-hosts keep talking about on our show?  To make some time for some LIVING ROOM?)  

While I’m writing this I’ve noticed the hour has swooshed by!  My three kids, still living at home, will be home from school in less than two hours.  Time to transition back into “mommy” mode.    And you can bet I’m counting that as a MUST do.  Because I’d die without my kids.  Honestly, they’re just lucky their teachers don’t allow me to come and spend the day with them.  

With love and friendship,

Jodi Marie Robinson

 

 Find Jodi’s website at www.shareloveserve.com.

 

 

 

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What's Your Five-Minute Life Do-Over?

About this Show:
Ever had a moment you wish could take back or redo? What would it be, and what would you do differently? Today we’ll explore some of the lighter experiences we wish to rewind. And for those more poignant experiences, discover what we’ve learned from those moments and what we would differently now. Join us for an enlightening look at our life’s do-overs.

 

Download this Show:

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-09-01.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

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Recommendations from our show:

 Devon article: http://momentsofchunder.blogspot.com/2014/02/my-latest-ksl-article.html

“The Piece of String” - Guy de Maupassant

"Living the past is a dull and lonely business; looking back strains the neck muscles, causing you to bump into people not going your way." -Edna Ferber

 

Ralph Waldo Emmerson- Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with you old nonsense.

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Motherhood Is Loss

In our recent show "Comings and Goings" I talk about those painful, bittersweet firsts and lasts.  I also reference this essay...enjoy!

https://youtu.be/sh-oNWNPAq0

Christie Gardiner is a wife, mother, actor, singer, speaker, advocate and lover of life!  Read more of her work at http://www.christiegardiner.com

 

 

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Duct Tape Your Inner Critic

 

If you're a writer of any kind you know about an internal editor (that little voice that after three laborious hours of writing says, "That, my friend, is drivel.")

Expand that to everyday living and you might find a little Aunt Mabel sitting on your shoulder, tapping her eyeglasses, and tut-tutting, "You can't do that. And you shouldn't be doing that. You should be... [fill in with various practical suggestions]."

But.

When we have something solid in our souls, something we know can make us more and help others be more too, we need to turn around and duct tape that inner critic's mouth.

Blake Snyder, author of Save the Cat Strikes Back! shared his loser-to-success story. In 1989, he had spent seven unsuccessful years in Hollywood as a screenwriter and had returned home a failure. Then his father died. And through the experience he woke up and realized he had been listening to his inner critic. He says, "At a time and place where opportunity was all around me-I was standing in a field full of diamonds, refusing to reach down and pick up just one."

Have you done that before?

So he gets on a new mojo train-one with discipline, focus, and positive energy-and let's go of tuttering Aunt Mabel, and starts listening to "Yes, I can," adding patience and hard work and faith. He writes down three goals-all of them by his account "insane," and which included selling a screenplay for a million dollars. Yet he knew, in his soul, it was right.

Within seven months, he had achieved all three goals.

One day he thumbed through his old goal notebook and happened on one promise he had forgotten: "As part of giving back for achieving my goals, I will write a book about how to write a screenplay." Ironically, at that time, he had just completed the final installment of the huge bestselling Save the Cat! trilogy, a book dedicated to helping writers learn how to write better. And he did it in a genuine and generous way never before attained.

Unknowingly, he had achieved it all.

Perhaps it's time to break out of the self-imposed box and duct tape your inner critic. Definitely learn and grow and be open to feedback and helpful advice. But learn to listen to your soul, to know how your voice needs to be heard, the difference you can make, and what beautiful diamond you have to share with the world.

--Connie

 

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Comings and Goings

About this Show:

Life is full of transitions.  Some are big.  Like moving to a new city.  Starting a new job.  Sending a child off to college.  Starting to date after a divorce.  Other transitions are small, but still can produce some angst and disconnection….sending kids off to school every morning, or leaving and getting home from work.  Whether your comings and goings are big or small, how we handle them makes all the difference.  

Download this Show: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-08-25.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Recommendations from our show: 

BOOKS: 

Hold Onto Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More than Peers By Gordon Neufeld, PhD and Gabor Mate, MD

“Death and dying” book.  By: Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

QUOTES:

"God is in the details." - Mies van der Rohe

“Light precedes every transition. Whether at the end of a tunnel, through a crack in the door or the flash of an idea, it is always there, heralding a new beginning.”

― Teresa Tsalaky, The Transition Witness 

“We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” T.S. Elliot

Read more athttp://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/t/tseliot109032.html#lkKjSyPp21cbffhd.99

VIDEO: Christie's LTYM "Motherhood is loss" essay.  https://youtu.be/sh-oNWNPAq0

ARTICLES: Psychology Today article -- https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fixing-families/201307/keys-handling-lifes-transitions

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My Placenta Has A First Name

 

I hope you'll enjoy and forgive me for my humorous take on natural childbirth. Let's just say it didn't go as well as I'd hoped. . . 

Click on the link to watch me read my story, "My Placenta has a First Name."

 

 

 

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book. . . look for it in four years.  

Read more of Kate's writings at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com
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Bodies In My Basement


I wasn't present when The Living Room recorded our most recent show, "Body Image and Sideburn Moments." Lest you think I have no body image issues—or solutions for overcoming them—I invite you to read this essay: 

 

Bodies in My Basement

 

I collect bodies in my basement.  

Over the years I’ve amassed hundreds of them. 

And I feel good about it.  


Every summer I take the kids to the pool. They adore what I avoid: Exposure. To the water, the sunshine. To other people. While they frolic and splash, I seek cover in the shade, fully clothed, attempting to lose myself in a novel. I note the irony of isolating myself at a pool labeled community. When I face the thought of exposing my physical flaws, my body feels more like a prison than a temple

Nearly lulled to sleep by the afternoon heat, I squint toward the pool. Hiding behind my sunglasses, I see my children and all the other people enjoying the water. Wonderful people, in every shape, size and color—some rotund and Rubenesque, others elongated like a Modigliani. Observing with my Artist’s Eye, I appreciate the distinctive beauty of each one.  

Leaning into the sunshine, I dig through the beach bag for the sketchbook I brought from my basement studio. Quickly, rhythmically, I begin to draw—sometimes without even looking at the paper. I try to capture all of those life-filled bodies in fleeting strokes: Families strolling by. Mothers standing, hips cocked to one side, talking to complete strangers. Grandmothers stooping over large, unwieldy beach bags. Children sliding and laughing. Little ones, wrapped in bright-colored towels, shivering in the sun. I suspend time, movement and space as I collect these gestures one at a time in my sketchbook. I want to save them.  The imperfect bodies are the most interesting to an artist. The rolls and folds create elegant forms. I notice that a pregnant woman's belly mirrors her toddler's, and contemplate the connection. I study the variety of proportions, and find that none is wrong. 

I am in awe of the souls who courageously parade their corpulence without inhibition. They don’t mind being exposed and vulnerable in swimsuits; they’re simply enjoying the water and the sunshine and the community. As they should.

Having cast myself to this poolside corner in relative darkness, I suddenly feel ashamed. Not so much of my body, but of the way I hide it, enshroud it, and sometimes even loathe it; the way this damaging mindset distances me from my kids. What kind of mother am I? I recognize that, in my reluctance to join my children in the pool, I’ve fallen prey to my own insecurities. In one fell swoop I’ve managed to devalue my mortal frame, a gift from God. I’ve cheated myself out of an opportunity to share a spirited activity with my children. And I run the risk of passing down a ridiculous complex to my own daughter, not to mention the children I hope she’ll bear in a future generation.  

Driving home the other day, I heard a song by Regina Spektor that seemed like a fleeting revelation. The lyrics: “I have a perfect body, but sometimes I forget. I have a perfect body because my eyelashes catch my sweat.” It’s just a silly pop song, yet it struck me with such tremendous force: My body, my children’s bodies, all of our bodies are perfectly engineered, from eyelashes to perspiration. They do what they were designed to do. Cells divide. Scars heal. Babies—entire human beings—grow inside their mothers. Before they’re even born they sprout fingernails and toenails, and develop impossibly complex parts like eardrums and eyeballs. Miracles, all.  

I yearn to develop an Artist's Eye—the Creator’s view—toward my own body. I remember that form follows function. I’m slowly learning to rejoice in my ripples and curves rather than lamenting the loss of the hardbody of my twenties. It’s easier to love the pillow of padding on my belly when I remember how I earned it: creating life, giving birth—four miraculous times. Through conceiving, bearing, feeding and nurturing children—through motherhood—I have finally used every part of my body exactly as it was designed, every function for its intended purpose. I may not look perfect, but I am complete.

I wonder: Were I to pull out of my basement the bodies I’ve collected in my sketchbooks—my creations celebrating His creations—might I somehow pull myself into that light as well? I have never drawn a body that wasn’t beautiful. I have never brought a baby into the world whose body seemed anything less than perfect. I would love to envision a self portrait with the same appreciative eye. Perhaps then I could escape this notion of a prison and celebrate my body for the temple it is...both for how it's shaped, and for the divinity it houses. 

 

I make a conscious decision to own my complete form and join my children in the pool. Donning a raspberry-red tankini I enter the water slowly, tentatively at first. I take a step, and then another. I try to silence the words of a former boyfriend still ringing in the back of my head: “Jana, get in the water quick before anyone sees those legs!” Wincing a little inside, I throw on an imaginary cloak of invisibility, shutting out judgement and shame. Who cares if it takes me the whole summer to turn from blue to white?! 

The water catches ripples of light, sparkling in the sun. The initial shock of cold gives way to a refreshing escape from the heat of the day. I am immersed. Lifting my head, catching my breath, feeling clean and alive, I see my children’s faces, beaming. They don’t notice the varicose veins or the dimples of cellulite. They see their mother, present and joyful, willing to splash, dive and call Marco. Or Polo. They may not be aware of the pride I sacrificed to join them in the pool, but I can tell they sense the love behind the gesture. Their smiles and enthusiasm tell me their happiness multiplied when I finally summoned the courage to dive in, all in. With them.

I'm proud of the fact that I collect bodies in my basement. Those stacks of sketchbooks are my personal witness to the beauty of the human form, in all its varieties. Including mine.

 

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains. #livingroomwithJana

Big shout-out  to Lime Ricki Swimwear, who helped me overcome my pathological fear of swimsuits. Every suit I've worn since the writing of this essay is made by Lime Ricki (I now happily own five, and no longer shrink away from getting in the pool or playing on the beach. Thank you, Lime Ricki!)

This essay was originally posted here. It is the piece I presented at the Listen To Your Mother show in 2014. You can hear me read it for that audience here. An earlier, shorter version of this essay was recently published by Deseret Book in an anthology on body image called Why I Don't Hide My Freckles Any More. All were based on a post I originally wrote for this blog several years ago, here.

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Growing in the Dry Spots

A recent camping trip reminded me how important it is in families to appreciate the little changes that are being made by each family member.  No matter how small they may appear to be. 

A few weeks ago, we arrived at a RV campground where we’d planned to spend a weekend with my parents.  It was around dinner time.  My dad had parked his RV next to a pavilion shaded by a tall tree.  Because the motorhome was so long it left no room for me to park my van on the parking strip so I parked alongside it on what appeared to be a dry, patch of dirt. 

It was obvious the campground had seen better days

The kids and I had barely grabbed our bags and pillows out of the back of the van when some sprinklers turned on, getting us, the van and all our stuff wet!  We raced around to the motorhome and plopped everything on some camping chairs, not minding the splashes, since earlier in the day temperatures had blared in the high 90s.

For dinner, we ate hickory grilled hamburgers, watermelon slices and dunked Oreos in milk.  (A family favorite!)

Shortly after our meal, a park ranger stopped by our site to inform me I couldn’t park my van on the “grass.”  He politely pointed out some parking spaces near the bathroom stalls.    

After reparking my van, I walked back to our camp staring at the dirt next to the RV and wondering what “grass” the ranger talking about? 

Who was he kidding? 

To make sure, I stood, peering down at the ground, and sure enough all I could see were dry patches with a few splotches of weeds. 

Later that evening, sitting in a camp chair, under a clear, night sky, I felt droplets of water. 

The sprinklers were on—again!?

I said to my parents, “Someone really wants to grow some grass!”

After nightfall, we enjoyed a movie in the motorhome which, for some reason, is so much fun!  The next morning, the sun woke me up early, and I stepped outside the RV to take a quick walk around the campsite.

And guess what? 

I looked at the ground and it looked greener!

Sure.  It was probably all in my mind. 

But still.  I swear it looked greener. 

The difference between what I had seen the day before and what’d I’d seen that morning could only be called one thing—potential

That’s what the ranger saw. 

He felt there was potential in that dry piece of dirt.  And that someday it could become lush, green grass.  And until then he was willing to keep watering it. 

How many times in a day do we look at the dry spots in our lives, in our families, in our children, in our neighbors, co-workers, fellow church members, and judge them for their dry spots? 

For what WE see as their lack of growth?

When really it’s our lack of seeing their potential? 

I can think of number of dry spots I’ve identified in me and my family that I’ve got to look at with different eyes.  I’ve got to stop judging what growth is or isn’t happening.  And just TRUST that it IS happening. 

Families are ALWAYS changing and growing. 

So who are we to judge whether someone is growing ENOUGH?    

I’ve decided my job—a mother’s job—is to shower my husband and children with refreshment and nourishment—to keep watering them—so they can achieve their best growing season, yet! 

And that means I have to change the way we I see all those dry spots. 

A cranky teenager that’s harder than usual to get along with. 

An anxious child who’s whining and worrying about school starting sometimes tires me out. 

A husband who’s unsure about the next phase of his career. 

Change is happening. 

And one thing is for sure.  I can’t stop it. 

But I can NOURISH it. 

That patch of dry dirt and weeds at the campground had something really BIG going for it!  A ranger who was determined to water it and care for it. 

A mother must constantly care for her family’s dry spots—those unpleasant parts of the job that get sticky, and messy, and energy-draining. 

A mother’s job is to help her family grow . . .  even in a drought. 

Because growth is about potential. 

If that ranger could see potential.  So can I!

I read somewhere (and I’ve got to figure out where) that change is like watching grass grow because you don’t really see change happening in the moment but all of a sudden one day the grass is a little longer. 

It’s time to look at the dry spots in your life.  And realize they are a necessary part of life.  Because it’s in those dry spots we mothers can manage some of our best growing.  We’re meant to help the ones we love grow and change so they can become who the best people they can be. 

I’ll be interested to pay a visit to the campground sometime in the future to see how that grass is doing.  But I promise.  I won’t judge what I see.  Because as long as someone is there watching over us we all become who and what we need to be—eventually.

Jodi Marie Robinson is a wife, mother, author, and inspirational speaker.  She teaches once a week at LDS Business College, and mentors women recovering from drug addiction.  Her books teach timeless principles of self-worth.  She loves doing things with her kids.  Whether it's sledding, snowmobiling, hiking, or going on waterslides.  Jodi is the service and volunteering contributor for KSL's Studio 5 program.   She loves being thought of as the neighbor next door—someone who always has a cup of sugar to lend and always needs a stick of butter to borrow (usually on a Sunday!).  Her website is www.shareloveserve.com.

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The End-of-Summer Ache

School starts next week.  And my heart hurts about it.  It isn’t that my kids don’t fight with each other.  It isn’t that I don’t have those days where my three little darlings drive me insane.  It isn’t that I don’t enjoy the bits of respite that school provides. 

What it IS, is the knowledge that I only get eighteen summers with each of them.  And there are so many things we didn’t do.  We didn’t go camping.  We didn’t roast marshmallows.  We didn’t sleep out in the backyard.  We didn’t do all of the epic summer things that I had planned.  The hurt is the regret of all the things we didn’t get to do.  It’s that familiar ache of motherhood. 

We did hike.  We did travel.  We did love each other and eat corn on the cob and stay up late.  We did eat snow-cones and go to the movies and play with friends and sleepover with cousins.  We did swim like fishes and perform.  A lot of dids to outweigh the did-nots.

We didn’t do enough but we did all that we could and what I can do now is hope that they will remember something, anything.  And that they’ll take whatever that meaningful moment is with them into their hearts and future.  That they’ll sit on the porch with their own kids one day and say, “There was this one summer…”   

I love them so much it hurts.  It always does, in that mother-hurt kind of way that is as painful as it is treasured. That loving and losing that happens all at the same time.  I can’t stop next week from coming, but for tonight, I think we’ll pack up the car, head for the mountains and watch the meteor shower!

Christie Gardiner is a writer, actor, singer, radio show host, lover of life, wife and MOM!  Read more of her work at http://www.christiegardiner.com

 

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Body Image and Sideburn Moments

About this Show:

All women struggle with body image issues at some point or another.  Loving and appreciating your body--imperfections and all--begins with a conversation.  In today’s show, our co-hosts start that conversation and explore what we're calling “sideburn moments" and how we turn negative feelings into positive ones. We're hoping the conversation about improving body image continues in our social media links and in future shows.  

Download this Show: 

http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-08-11.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Recommendations from our show:

On meeting Stephanie Nielson, and hearing her say “I am not my body”


Jana delivers a powerful message about body image as a mother and an artist. LTYM: Northern Utah ● 4/29/14 ● University of Utah Campus http://listentoyourmothershow.com/no...
“Bodies in My Basement” blog post


“When Ugly Isn’t” blog post

 


Special thanks to Lime Ricki for sponsoring our show! Check out their line of darling swimsuit apparel at http://www.limericki.com/

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

 

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An Oldest Child

The other day I bought an emergency preparedness 72 hour backpack. My 6-year-old daughter asked what it was for. Not wanting to scare her, I told her it was for small emergencies, like if she scraped her knee or if we needed to go somewhere quickly.

At that point my 8-year-old son jumped in, “Or, if there is a huge earthquake and our house topples down or a fire and it burns down.”

I told my son to stop talking as my daughter ran over to the couch, fingers plugging her ears and her face buried in the cushions.

“Nice. Cam.” I told him. “You scared her to death.”

“Well it’s true, Mom.” Cameron told me.

I then told him that he wasn’t allowed to talk about emergencies or disasters again with his sister even if it could happen, that it scared her and that I remembered being little and it scaring me too.

He rolled his eyes, so I threatened him this time.

“I mean it! I don’t want to hear you doing it again. That’s not funny. She is terrified. Not another word about it or you’re grounded.”

I thought it was really interesting that my young son wasn’t fazed at all at the thought of an emergency situation. In fact, I was somewhat relieved to know that we could count on him if something did ever happen to us. I took advantage of this knowledge when my daughter Meg walked out of the room.

“Cameron.” I told him. “If anything were to ever happen to mom or dad, take this backpack and get the kids to someone who could help you. Ok?”

Cameron nodded his head impatiently while trying the backpack on for size. “Ok. Ok I get it.”  He then turned to me. “OK Mom I know you said that I can’t bring the emergency stuff up again with Meg, but could we please just do it one more time?” He pleaded.

“Why?” I asked him.

“Oh, I want you to tell Meg who’s in charge if something happens to you and Dad.” He then looked at me and nodded knowingly and excitedly. “It’s me, right mom?! I’d be in charge right?!”

I shook my head, not knowing whether I should ask him what was wrong with him or reassure him that nothing was going to happen to Dad and I. This time, I went with the "better parenting" option of reasurring him instead of the “judgmental parent option" and telling him he may be a bit crazy.  

“Cam, don’t worry that’s never going to happen. Dad and I are going to be just fine.”

Cam looked almost hopeful when he replied, “I know, I know. . . but it could happen! You might not be fine.”

Forget better parenting, I should have just asked him what was wrong with him.

Cameron continued. “Ok Mom, so could you just go get Meg really quick and tell her that I’m in charge if something happens to you guys?”

I had to laugh. That’s an oldest child for you. In his little power hungry mind, it didn’t matter one bit that if he were ever in that situation it would mean that his parents would be dead. No, what was important was that his little sister know that he was in charge when we die.”

I realize now that it may have been a mistake to have that conversation with him. I’m sleeping with our bedroom door locked from now on.

 

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book. . . look for it in four years.  

Read more of Kate's writings at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com

 

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Post-it Notes From God

About this Show:

Sometimes it's hard to feel any sort of connection to the divine, let alone feel that incredible love in our lives. Once when my husband filled my luggage with post-it notes, I realized God does the same thing: sends little reminders and assurances of His love and posts them everywhere. Even when life gets difficult.

Download this Show: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-08-04.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

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Living Passionately, Presently, and Purposefully

 

Often we feel we have to "eat, pray, love" in a year-long pilgrimage to regain passion in our lives. But shifting our view of our daily dos can bring a level of passion to our lives we may not have realized.

1. Passionately. When we discover deeper meaning in seemingly regular experiences, we gain increased energy, happiness, and influence.

One year our spunky daughter was struggling in the classroom. After considerable thought, and with no offense to her current teacher, we felt to move her to a different environment and instructor. The new teacher was Mrs. Shipp, and talk about daily passion! Even though as a second-grade teacher she shared repetitive information and did mundane tasks, Mrs. Shipp sparked each child's desire to learn through her own unquenchable fire. She marinated those children in love by praising small efforts and frequently doing the "good job cheer," a little song to say you're great.

Whether you're a furnace man, sales clerk, or at-home mother, look for the meaning in what you do. Is it a person you're helping, a service you provide, or a product that makes life more efficient? In seeking for that meaning, insignificant as it may seem, you'll find the fulfillment. When I look at my children I try to think, I'm nurturing and developing a human being-a living, loving person. In those moments, the overflowing laundry room doesn't bother me so much.       

2. Presently. A few months ago I helped women create a Life Board (sometimes called a Vision Board). One of the tips I suggested was to choose a key word or phrase (or a few) to aptly describe their ideal life this coming year.

Taking my own advice, in a quiet moment I considered a word for my life. In the past, I've used joy, brave, centered, and others. This time, the word "free" came very clearly. As I thought what that looked like I recognized certain areas of my life that needed more "freeing" and ways that I could be more free others around me.

Ironically, after that experience I saw the word everywhere. Then a few weeks ago I spent time with good friends. We shopped at a big barn store chuck full of crafts and knick knacks. I happened to walk by a thematic Willow Tree statue with a placard descriptor that said "Free" (unfortunately referring to the statue's symbolic meaning, not the price...) The caption read, "FREE to sing, laugh, dance...create." Bingo-that shot straight to my soul. I now keep it on my desk so that everyday I'm reminded to stay in that frame of my mind for both myself and others.

3. Purposeful. Have you considered what you do, say, or experience that makes you feel purposeful? Try finding it in unpretentious ways such as simple service. Earlier this week on a slushy, sleety, gloomy day three different people out of the blue specifically said, "You have a good day today." That brightened my mood. Afterward at the store, I happened to see bright pink-yellow-orange mums, bushy and delightful. Paying the feeling forward I picked them up for neighbors. Though I hadn't done anything special, my mood not only lightened but the day felt purposeful on a new level.

That kind of simple service makes a difference. In preparation for Easter, this month you can join us for our 40 Days of Service where we post simple service given or received. Whatever our personal purpose, we can be kind. 

As we change our lens on what it means to live passionately, presently, and purposefully, we truly can find big fulfillment in daily ways.

Best, 

Connie

 

 

 

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Meaningful RItuals

About this Show:

Successful families come in all shapes and sizes, but the one thing that they all have in common is meaningful rituals. Patterned interactions that have meaning and significance in family life build unity, identity, and make life predictable. Learn more about the benefits of rituals, how to make your family rituals more meaningful, and hear lots of new ideas about rituals you can implement in your family's life.

Download this Show: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoomLIVE_2015-07-14.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

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Self Care and Preservation

About this Show:

In this day and age, a lot is asked of us and it can be easy to sacrifice for the sake of our jobs, our family or a meaningful social life. Since it doesn't seem life will change anytime soon, we're chatting about some ideas that will help! Dive into talents, create a Power Up and Power Down routine, make time for yourself and more. Have a listen!

Download this Show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-06.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

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Why Me?

In our most recent Living Room show, Awaken Your Soul With Gratitude, I shared a brief version of this story that took place about seven years ago:

We were in the midst of yet another family crisis, and I was delivering the younger children to a friend's house so I could go home and deal with the aftermath. I tried to explain, as calmly and gently as possible, why I was dropping them off at a friend's house instead of heading home for Sunday dinner, and our nine-year-old spouted off this classic: "Out of all the people in the world, why us?"

Nobody wants to feel singled out in a crisis. We grapple to make sense of it all: Where did we go wrong? What did we do (or not do) to deserve this? I wanted to pat his little head and say, I know, baby. I'm feeling pretty dumped on right now too. It would have been easy to start wallowing in a pity party about why we didn't deserve some of the tough stuff we'd been recently dealt. I turned his question over and over again in my mind as I turned the corner to our friend's house.

Then suddenly, on the way home, I turned it completely around. I realized that the same question could apply to how extraordinarily blessed we are: "Out of all the people in the world, why us?" Why, out of so many more deserving souls, have we been singled out for so many tender mercies and miracles? I created a mental checklist of blessing after blessing, and suddenly felt more cared for than dumped on. Blessings, large and small, ongoing and surprisingly sudden, abound in our lives: The right people in the right place at the right time, all the time. People suddenly inspired, out of the blue, to check in with us. Access to resources we never would have considered. And those are just the obvious ones. But in some ways even huger are the less-obvious ones: Health. Strength. Healing. Guidance. Inspiration. Peace.

Gratitude helps me through the dark times. Every time.

#fromthelivingroomwithJana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains.

 

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TLR Event: Once There Was A Beehive

To all of our Utah and surrounding area listeners...this post is for you!

We, at The Living Room, are so excited to be hosting & emceeing two screenings of the delightful new film, "Once I Was A Beehive!" From the people who brought us "The Saratov Approach" comes a sweet film based on hundreds of true stories about a Girl's Camp, the campers, the leaders and the experiences at camp that last a lifetime! 

The movie isn't released until August 14th, so here's your chance to see it early, meet some of the cast and crew, win prizes and of course meet us! It's a party!  If you're interested in attending, you must do the following:

1. Check out the Facebook group and RSVP https://www.facebook.com/events/100279866991871/

2. Purchase your ticket!  Simply RSVPing will not assure you a seat...you must follow the links and buy your tickets.  THEY WILL SELL OUT! 

We'll be at the following events:

TUESDAY, AUGUST 4th, 2015 @ 7pm
Megaplex Pineview 10
St George, UT

FRIDAY, AUGUST 7th, 2015 @ 7pm
Cinemark University Mall
Orem, UT

We are excited to be co-hosting this awesome movie!  We are excited to meet you...(hugs optional)!  Don't miss it!

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Other Mothers In the Trenches

 

Our recent show, MOTHERHOOD IN THE TRENCHES, got me thinking about all the women in my life who’ve been “in the trenches” with me who don’t have children of their own.

My friend Mindy, whom I’ve known for 20 years, has never had the blessing of bearing children of her own.  But she has mothered, fostered, tutored, housed, mentored, and cherished many children. 

She and her husband have fostered nine children; two of which she was hoping to adopt but instead opened her heart to the children’s biological mother and helped rehabilitate her so the children could be raised by her.  Her heart is always in the right place, even when it’s breaking. 

Mindy recently had two foreign exchange students live with her for a year.  These students happily called her mom.  When it was time to return home, not knowing when they’d see her again, they wept.  I think of the hours they spent learning from her, laughing with her, listening to her, and loving her. 

Isn’t that what mothers do? 

Mindy has also had a motherly influence on me.  I know whenever I’m with her she makes me feel like I’m the most important person in her life.  She carefully and confidently advises, compliments and encourages.  She shares her hopes and dreams, failures and successes, and always attentively listens to  mine. 

Whenever she comes to visit me—which isn’t often enough because she lives in Texas and I live in Utah—I drop everything to make time to see her.  I’d be crazy not to!  Because she praises everything I do (which believe me, not all of it praiseworthy).  From my cooking to my decorating to how I raise my children, Mindy assures me I’m a wonderful mother, and tells my children how lucky that I’m their mom (and no she’s not being paid to say it although I probably should tip her!). 

While I’m quick to see all my flaws, Mindy is quick to see my strengths.   

That’s why I consider Mindy a mother in the trenches in truest sense of the word. 

So, when we talk about being in the trenches of motherhood, let’s all look around us and see ALL the women who have influenced us for good.  Those who lift us up and return us to sanity in moments of insanity, as well as those who bluntly tell us when our roots need touching up. 

As the wise Sheri Dew said:  “Few of us will reach our potential without the nurturing of both the mother who bore us and the mothers who bear with us.”

How grateful I am for women who are mothers in the truest sense of the word.

So lucky am I  to call Mindy . . . F R I E N D. 

With love and friendship,

Jodi

Jodi is an author, speaker, and blogger at www.shareloveserve.com.  She and her husband are the parents of four children. She enjoys late nigt ice cream runs, long walks in winter, and visiting small towns.  

 

Graphic is courtesy of LDS media library.

Free download https://www.lds.org/ensign/2001/11/are-we-not-all-mothers?lang=eng

 

Connect with THE LIVING ROOM hosts here:

1.    Instagram: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

2.    Facebook: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

3.    Twitter: www.twitter.com/livingroom7

4.    Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

 

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Design on a Dime

We bought a "new" old house just over a year ago. As many of you know, when you buy an old house there is so much to fix-up that you often don't have money leftover to buy furniture or decorations. I am a do-it-yourselfer for sure, but I may be a bit hyper too. Consequently, I'm happy to do a project that doesn't require my focus for more than a few hours and also doesn't require me to be a perfectionist (which I am not).

The biggest requirement is that it has to be affordable. So, when my sister told me that she had come up with a way to re-upholster her chairs without sewing, I was all for it.

The result, was a couple of days of work (2 chairs and about 4-5 hours a day), and two awesome wingback chairs for under $100 a piece - including the price of the chairs as well as hiring someone to sew the seat cushion (that part does need to be sewn-even a non-perfectionist has a line.)

-Happy Decorating

-Kate

Read the rest of the story and see the final products here.

Kate is a mom to three (almost four), one of ten children and writer in her spare time (which is why it takes her four years to write a book instead of four months). She loves being rejected so much that she continues writing. Currently, Kate writes for the uplifting section on KSL.com. She has written a couple of books as well as a screenplay. The screenplay won part of a contest in LA for the "Next Best Movie Idea". Currently she is turning that screenplay into a book.  

 

 

 

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I'm Having A "Me Party" - Some of my Other Motherhood Confessions

Don't get me wrong, I LOVE being a mom.  But like any mom, I need a break from time to time.  We talked about our motherhood confessions on this show. If you haven't listened to "Confessions of Motherhood" I highly recommend it.  The stories still make me laugh.

I have another confession: Me Parties.  I shared how I get away and recharge in the middle of busy days in this video from the Listen to Your Mother Series.

Thanks for listening and watching!

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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Awakening Your Soul to Gratitude

About this show:

Oprah Winfrey once said, "Gratitude is the way home."  In this show The Living Room Co-hosts share tips on finding the good and being grateful even in hard times.  Simple stories explore how gratitude awakens our soul and brings us joy in hard times.  We go beyond gratitude journals and beyond challenges to talk about the blessings of trials and how we can support and help others - even in the midst of our own personal hardships.  

In this show, Jana shares a wonderful story about "why us". Click on the link below to read that story.

http://divergentpathways.blogspot.com/2009/03/out-of-all-people-in-world-why-us.html

Scroll down for the References from this show.

Download this show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-07-28.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

 

REFERENCES from this show:

Simple Abundance by Sarah Brechnach

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

What I Know for Sure by Oprah Winfrey

The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown

Happy at Last by Richard O’Connor

Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Center

O Remember, Remember by Henry B. Eyring https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2007/10/o-remember-remember?lang=eng

About Time by Filmmaker Richard Curtis

 

QUESTIONS FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION:

Have I seen the hand of God in my life today?

What made this day worth living?

Who has helped me along the way today?

What was outside that made my heart sing? 

What is the correlation between gratitude and mindfulness?

 

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Awaken YOUR soul with gratitude! Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

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The Twelve Year Old Trip- A Meaningful Family Ritual

 

I read an amazing book by Bob Goff.  It is called Love Does.  Chapter 20 is called the 10 year old adventure.  It was so inspiring!  Bob Goff takes his children on 10 year old adventures anywhere in the world to learn about life.  It inspired me to create our own tradition.

It’s called the 12 year old trip!

On Hailey’s 11th birthday we told her that we would take her anywhere in the United States (except Alaska and Hawaii.  We aren’t made of money after all!).  We told her that she could plan the trip herself.  The world was hers–or at least 48 states were hers!  Our only restriction was that she would have to earn the money completely herself.  She had one year.

It’s been one year.

And so on Friday we will go to the airport and board a plane for the Big Apple…New York City.  Her choice, although I can’t say I’m disappointed.  I can’t wait feel her excitement when she sees the city for the first time!  I can’t wait to watch her face as she sees Times Square and the Statue of Liberty, to hear her laugh at a Broadway show, to eat hot dogs in Central Park, to cry with her as she learns about the devastation of 9/11- an event that seems so recent to me but happened two years before she was born.  And I can’t wait for the things we can’t plan.  The talks, the jokes, the memories.

But little does Hailey know, the part I was looking forward to has already happened!  I spent the past twelve months watching my daughter learn how to work.  I watched her make babysitting flyers.  We had kids over to our house so that I could teach her how to babysit.  She worked for her Grandparents.  She did odd jobs.  She gave up playing with friends at times so that she could earn a few more dollars.  I know that because of this hard work, the trip she’s dreamed of for a year, the trip she’s studied and planned, will mean so much more to her.

I hope that my daughter will take this experience and weave it into the fabric of her life.  That the hard work, the sacrifices, the pay-off, the lessons will become a part of her.  And I hope that in 20ish years from now I can babysit Hailey’s other kids while she takes her own oldest child on their 12 year old trip so that she can feel the satisfaction that I feel today.

I talked about the 12 year old trip on our show entitled “Meaningful Rituals.”  It’s available by clicking on the right

------------>   Might I suggest a listen?

Until next time; live your beautiful life!
Christie

Christie Gardiner is a radio personality, speaker, actress, writer, singer, advocate, mother, wife and friend to all.  Read more of her writing at http://www.christiegardiner.com

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Confessions of Motherhood

About this show:

Need to laugh or commiserate with other mothers about the backstage reality of motherhood? Enjoy these everyday confessions that you can relate to about how make "this" work in real life. 

Download this show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-07-21.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

 

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

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Mindful Marriage

About this show:

What does it mean to create a Mindful Marriage? With so many marriages ending in divorce and so many others in dissatisfaction, the Living Room 7 share their thoughts on what it takes to put your marriage first.  Learn how to navigate the funny and the serious and how to do little things each day to make a difference with your spouse.

Direct this show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-16.mp3?type=showpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels and join the conversation:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

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The Missing Confession

Earlier this week, my friends at The Living Room aired a show called, “Confessions of Motherhood.” I was absent for this recording--and felt somewhat relieved I didn’t have to share my most embarrassing moment or deepest flaw on internet radio. I was perfectly happy to be traveling and painting instead.

Then a beloved friend texted me the following: “I’m listening to the most recent TLR podcast, and I am noticing that you didn’t confess anything. I haven’t finished it yet. But now I’m thinking that maybe you really are a perfect mother because I can’t think of anything you should confess either.” 

 

 

Hahahaha!

Please allow me to put any such delusions to rest once and for all.

Here’s my official confession (although I’m somewhat horrified to put this in writing):

A couple of months ago I hosted my book group at our house. We read a wonderful YA novel, Signed, Skye Harper by Carol Lynch Williams and—miracle of miracles—the author was joining us in person! We could hardly believe our good fortune.

I spent a good chunk of the day cleaning the house, preparing raw food (one of our members has cancer and is on a special diet), and getting ready for the event.

Our family breeds Shelties (shetland sheepdogs) and the last puppy had just been sold, so there was some extra cleaning and mopping to do, as I put away the puppy crate, washed mountains of extra towels, and turned the laundry room back into a place where we actually wash and iron our clothes. 

When it came down to the final vacuum, I did every inch of the main floor—even the stairs and behind the couch—but when I suddenly glanced at the clock, time was running short. I looked at the dining room and thought, no one has eaten in here this week, and quickly ran the vacuum alongside—but not under—the big harvest table, then rewound the cord and put the vacuum away.


Guests arrived, people admired the display of food and the lovely antique dishes (my grandmother’s) we used for the occasion. The author was seated at the head of the dining room table, and was regaling us with stories of not cleaning her house, joking about how the neighbor kids thought they might catch a disease. I could hardly relate—I’d been cleaning for what seemed like the entire day.

Then about midway through the evening one young mother put her toddler down on the floor. He was exploring, crawling under the dining room table, then stopped, and sat still with some sort of treasure in his hand. His mother cooed, “Oh, what did you find?” just as he was about to put it in his mouth.

To my complete mortification, in his chubby little fist was a piece of puppy poo.

That’s right. The one spot I left unchecked and unvacuumed was the spot where, unbeknownst to me, the little puppy we sold that morning had chosen to relieve himself.

I slid back my chair, made a mad dash for the kitchen for tissue and towels, and apologized over and over again to this sweet mom.

But the damage was done. I doubt she’ll ever even set foot in my house again. At least not with her baby in tow. For all I know the entire book group has already made a secret pact to exclude me from future gatherings.

My friend who was texting me about being perfect doesn’t know this story...until now. Still listening to the podcast, she texted, “Ah. just heard that you weren’t there. I still think you’re perfect.”

So, CB—this one’s for you.
—Oh, and you’re welcome.


To underscore the fact that I don't judge you for any little imperfections at your house, check out this post on my personal blog. And in the comments, please share some of your most embarrassing moments so I don’t feel quite so terrible about myself.   :)

 

#fromthelivingroomwithJana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains.

 

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Let's Be Honest! Confessions.

Remember before you had children? I do! How I promised myself I would never EVER do certain things. I promised I would never be a mom who was behind, neglected, forgot.... and then I had children. 5 of them and now I have a few confessions to make. I hope after you listen we can all still be friends. (I know Disneyland can be a really touchy subject.)

Watch this 2015 LTYM dialogue as I confess my motherhood faux pas and beliefs, and see if you can relate to any of them. In fact, take a minute to leave a comment here or on our facebook page and tell us a few of your own motherhood confessions.

You also don't want to miss our "Confessions of Motherhood" show where we all give you a good laugh and dish on our dirty motherhood laundry.

Enjoy! 

 Heather Ann Johnson M.S. is a wife, mother, speaker, and has been teaching at Brigham Young University for nearly 13 years. She and her husband have 5 children with one on the way. 

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Motherhood in the Trenches.

About this show:

Motherhood is exciting and taxing and amazing.  We're talking about Motherhood in the TRENCHES.  How do you handle kids that say they're bored all the time?  What about grown kids and teenagers, how do you stay connected? We're also talking about communication and hugs...they're never too old!

What about going to bed feeling guilty or like you are the worst mother in the world? Do you compare yourself to other moms? Do you hug enough, feed your kids enough healthy meals, teach enough, spend enough time?

How about forgive enough (yourself and them).

Listen to our show and come away hopefully realizing that YOU simply are enough.

Download this show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-06.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

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What I Gained When I Lost

About this show:

This topic is something that, as women, we can all relate to.  We are talking about those moments that come for us all when, as poet Robert Frost has said, “two roads diverge in a yellow wood.”  Often life’s choices result in a form of a sacrifice.  Our hosts share experiences of what there is to be gained when losing something meaningful.  The great stories of our lives are built on the conflict, the sacrifices, the hard experiences.  These are the things that build mighty characters.  Join us in taking a moment to consider: What did you gain when you lost?

Listen to this show here: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-30.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

 

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Story Rituals


In our most recent Living Room episode, called "Meaningful Rituals," I shared a favorite ritual from my growing-up years: Storytelling.

When I was a little girl, my beloved grandmother told us a favorite bedtime story every time we slept over. I loved listening to her gentle voice tell us the old-fashioned tale "Cozette"— so much that I asked for a tape recording for my 25th birthday. You can read more about that special story here.

Grandma also told us silly stories about our dad when he was growing up: how he got a baby chick for Easter and named it Hallelujah. How he put two kittens in the fridge, and a duck in the dryer, and rode a horse bareback. How he misbehaved. We LOVED this youngster image of our dad that only Grandma could share.

My grandpa always told us stories that would raise the hair on the back of your neck: How he and his friends spit on a horseshoe for good luck, then he tossed it over his shoulder and sent it crashing through the school window! How he had a part-time job playing the organ at the silent movie theater, and playing saxophone in a dance band. How great-grandpa Cort once shot a bear right between the eyes...and outsmarted a town official in order to get justice for a Japanese immigrant the man had swindled. Grandpa himself later spoke out against the Japanese internment camps during World War 2. 

My grandpa on my mom's side used to SING us his stories. He loved the Christopher Robin songs by A. A. Milne and delighted us over and over with his adorable boyish renditions. It was pure magic to hear him sing these timeless stories.

My mother told us stories of her own family: How she was raised by her grandmother, whom they affectionately called Marmee (like the character she was nicknamed fora strong young widow with four spirited daughters); How her youngest brother would spit out a now-famous string of the naughtiest words he could think of: P.O. Poop Out Stinker Bum!; how her father took them sailing on the Great Salt Lake, sang baritone solos in the Messiah, and had his own radio show; how her mother worked at an advertising agency in Los Angeles and how Grandpa called her his Happy Heart. And how her daddy would come home at night and entertain them at the dinner table by telling stories.

My father told us stories of his own childhood adventures -- ones I’m sure he never told his mother: How he and his friends found a dead body on the capitol grounds; How he found a leather pouch full of money under a tree and inadvertently interrupted an FBI stakeout; how he and his friends let the air out of the tires of a whole fleet of police cars parked at the capitol building one night; how an unstable kid named Ikey threatened to kill him; and how he discovered a hermit cave—and the hermit who lived there!   Dad also made up hilarious bedtime stories about spaceships and astronauts and what could go wrong in outer space. My dad's stories, more than any other, made me want to seek out and live adventures of my own, and write about them.

My husband is the King of Story. He writes screenplays, teaches screenwriting, produces and directs movies, creates webisodes, and exhausts every possible outlet for storytelling (as evidenced in his TedX talk, here). He reads wonderful books out loud to the family -- The Tale of Despereaux, Walk Two Moons, and Watership Down. Most recently we listened to The Boys in the Boat on tape, and he read to us aloud, "The Road" by Cormack McCarthy. He also makes up fabulous stories about our kids and their friends and their secret superpowers. He lives and breathes story.

And I've told a few stories of my own. One of my favorites became sort of an allegory on giving. Here is Jeremiah's Bedtime Story, on ethat has survived for many years, called An Hundredfold

So you can see how the ritual of storytelling, begun by my grandparents, lives on in my life and the lives of our children. 

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains.

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When You Have a Business Dream...

As the managing director for Startup Princess, I get to work with a lot of entrepreneurs from across the country and throughout the world.  I've learned some things about business and I've watched a lot of businesses fail.  If you have a business or if you've thought about starting one, in this video I share the 5 Biggest Mistakes Busy Entrepreneurs Make & How to Avoid Them.

Click here to watch:

http://startupprincess.com/5-biggest-mistakes-entrepreneurs-make-and-how-to-avoid-them/

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

 

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When You Have a Business Dream...

As the managing director for Startup Princess, I get to work with a lot of entrepreneurs from across the country and throughout the world.  I've learned some things about business and I've watched a lot of businesses fail.  If you have a business or if you've thought about starting one, in this video I share the 5 Biggest Mistakes Busy Entrepreneurs Make & How to Avoid Them.

Click here to watch:

http://startupprincess.com/5-biggest-mistakes-entrepreneurs-make-and-how-to-avoid-them/

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She's the managing director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

 

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Creating a Limitless Life

Every year I choose a “word of the year” in addition to my regular goals. Previous words I’ve used are “Light” and “Intuitive.” At the beginning of 2013, I asked myself, “What do I want more than anything else?” The answer was simple. I wanted to be “LIMITLESS.”

I wanted to be limitless in my energy. Limitless in my love—especially in my love for my kids and husband. Limitless in my faith in a higher power. Limitless in my abilities to have a successful business and speaking career and grow my paychecks. Limitless in the amount I could get done in a day. Limitless in my health, nutrition, and my athletic ability. I wanted to release the limitations I place on myself and get them out of my mind once and for all. I wanted to feel limitless in my possibilities and future.



In previous and subsequent years, I shared my word with other people, but I didn’t do that in 2013. Part of what I wanted to let go of were the limitations others placed on me. We all have people in our lives who make our dreams feel small. I didn’t want anyone to bring me down with well-meaning comments about human limits. I simply wanted to tell myself I was limitless and live in that experience. So I kept it private and let the journey be my own.

The reality is that I know I have limitations. I know I’m not super human. I have weaknesses and shortcomings just like everyone else, and throughout the year I still had my fair share of mistakes and set-backs. I even had breakdowns and cry fests. Feeling limitless is not about having super powers, it’s about letting go of weighty beliefs that keep you from your dreams. I discovered that some of the biggest limitations I have are ones I place on myself.

When I released some of those limitations, amazing things happened.

For example, in my annual planning session, and under the influence of Ann Webb’s “Ideal LifeVision” program, I decided I wanted to run a half-marathon. To that point I had run a few 5K races and a 10K, but running wasn’t really my thing—or at least that’s what I had always told myself. I felt a pull to run a half marathon, so I decided it was time to release the “I can’t run” limitation from my life. On January 1st, I registered for a half-marathon in September. I announced my intention on Facebook (because everyone knows there’s no turning back once you post something on Facebook).

The training process was hard. I began to see exactly how many of my limitations were only in my head. If I told myself “I am strong. I am a runner. I am capable and ready to run this 10 miles,” I could do it. Like so many things in life, running is just as much a mental game as it is a physical one.

There were still times in those months when I wanted to quit, drop out of the training program, and never run again. Yet I couldn’t escape the fact that I had committed, and though I might have physical limitations, I’m NOT a quitter. I continued my training, and I ran the race in September. For me, it wasn’t just about crossing a finish line, it was about staying committed and removing limits.

Though your stories and circumstances will differ from mine, I want you to think about the limitations you place on yourself. What “I can’t _________” statements are holding you back?

When it came to being limitless in my relationships, I found I understood people better when I looked them in the eye, and they understood me better as well. I tried to look at my children with limitless love, and I smiled and practiced having limitless amounts of patience. I wish I could claim a flawless track record in the parenting department, but I can’t. I still snapped more than I wanted, but I also had times where I remembered to exude limitless love, and that is when the miracles happened. Just having the words run through my brain were powerful and relationship-altering.

I was blessed to see an abundance of results in my professional life as well. My radio show took off (it now gets more than 40,000 downloads a month), I produced physical products to sell at live events, and I had some record breaking paychecks. I meditated and prayed for success and received energy and clarity to go to work. With those gifts, I was able to write two books. My first book, “The Time Blueprint for Entrepreneurs” (Available on Amazon.com) was a #1 Bestselling book in my category. It was well received, and exceeded my initial expectations. Writing a book can be hard, but I removed that limitation and created the possibility that it didn’t have to take months, it could take days. When a press opportunity arose, I wanted to have my book, Make It Happen—The Practices of Peak Performers, ready for a show. I had 12 days. I worked at night and while my kids were at school. With my mind fixed upon my goal, and with incredible editors, I was able to remove my limits and release the book digitally in time for the press opportunity.

However good it felt to have the book available digitally, though, I knew it wasn’t enough. After all, I was limitless! While I was in the process of exploring my self-publishing options, I sent the manuscript to an industry contact. I was hoping for feedback I could use in writing my third book, but to my surprise and delight, they wanted to publish this one. I was blown away. My dream of getting published within three to five years happened in two.

While we’re on the subject of limitless business achievements, let’s talk about the fact that I also quadrupled my revenue that year. To be honest, I hadn’t even set a money goal. I had things I wanted to accomplish, and I kept my businesses churning, but I was shocked when I did my accounting and realized I’d earned four times as much as the previous year. Releasing limits has a way of affecting every area of your life if you open up to the possibility.

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, strategist, success coach, serial entrepreneur and show host. In addition to The Living Room, Michelle also has a solo show called Make It Happen.  She loves God, is married, has two kids and her secret love is sugar cereals.

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K.I.S.S.

Our family is just two weeks away from having our 6th child and I feel behind. Usually at this point in pregnancy I have the house just right, everyone moved to their respectful rooms, laundry done, cupboards stocked so that I don't have to do any shopping after the baby. I am even on top of things like haircuts, and dentist appointments. I am usually ahead, and then I find ways to do more, but not this time. This time things are just fine. And that is the problem. I am just getting by. I can't seem to get ahead. 

Not right now. I look around and there is soooo much that I need to do, I don't know where to start. I don't feel on top of the regular laundry, let alone extra time to reorganize or get ahead. Feeling behind is stressful.

I have been trying to come up with a plan to tackle the "behind-ness" and I keep going back to a conversation I had with my grandmother a few years ago.

After we had our second child I was talking to my grandma. We were standing on her driveway talking about the changes that come with two kids.

As we stood there that day she looked at me and said..."Heather, don't forget to KISS."

I was confused, KISS, what was she talking about. (Please don't tell me my grandma is going to talk about the birds and bees.)

"What grandma?"

"You know, KISS..." she said

Keep. It. Simple. Stupid

I laughed as she looked at me and repeated, "Heather, Keep It Simple Stupid!"

I have a smart grandma. Funny too! KISS has become my new mantra.  

Over the last 14 years of marriage and 5 kids, we have collected things and stuff. It was all important at some point in time, but not now. There are things I have held on to, that I am ready to let go of. Slowly but surely as our family has grown and gotten busier, there is more than I can manage.

KISS applies to every aspect of our lives. We need to keep our stuff simple, or schedules simple, our relationships simple. We need to avoid surrounding ourselves with more than we can manage, taking on more than we can handle, or trying to run faster than we have energy. Otherwise, we miss out on our families, because we are so stressed managing all the "stuff".

Time to get back to basics, and keep it simple. I have been stupid long enough. 

Anyone else need to remember to K.I.S.S?

 Heather Ann Johnson M.S. is a wife, mother, speaker, and has been teaching at Brigham Young University for nearly 13 years. She and her husband have 5 children with one on the way. 

 

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CONTACT US!

Thank you for reaching out to us!

If you have questions about advertising with us or if you are a memeber of the media, please call Michelle 801-592-1101

If you love The Living Room, we'd love to hear about it.  You can leave a review on iTunes. or send us an email: thelivingroomradio@gmail.com

We read EVERY email! 

If you have thoughts or feedback, we'd love to hear that, too!  Email us: thelivingroomradio@gmail.com 

Or, feel free to reach out to an individual host:

Connie: me <at> conniesokol.com

Christie: write2Christie <at> gmail.com

Kate: katelynnerose <at> yahoo.com

Jana: janaparkin <at> gmail.com

Jodi: jodimarierobinson <at> gmail.com

Heather: blog.familyvolley <at> gmail.com

Michelle: michelle <at> speakmichelle.com

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On Losing and Gaining

Our latest Living Room episode is called “What I Gained When I Lost.” I was absent for this recording session. (I gained a painting trip to Southern Utah with my Dad when I lost a chance to record with my Living Room friends!) 

The idea of gaining from losing is powerful. Host Christie Gardiner says we become who we’re meant to be when we sacrifice something great...for something more important. The less-dramatic business term for this kind of gaining and losing is called “opportunity cost.” 

Sometimes what I’ve lost (my opportunity cost) isn’t a conscious sacrifice, but my need to acknowledge the hand of a higher power at work in my life.

Capitol Reef National Park

 

In all honesty, when I glibly said I gained a painting trip when I lost that chance to record our show, it’s true. Three days in Snow Canyon. But there’s more. That painting trip was a consolation prize. What I lost first was my favorite tradition. A class I was teaching at UVU for the third year in a row, taking a dozen students to paint on location in Capitol Reef National Park, was unexpectedly cancelled at the last minute. I didn’t just lose a fabulous week encouraging students to learn and grow and create. I lost my entire summer’s income. And a trip I count on yearly to rejuvenate my art and my soul. And yes, my dad was coming along this year—something I was really looking forward to.

I have to admit I grumbled. I was frustrated that it was cancelled so late in the game, after I had already put in so much work, with no compensation. It felt like the university cared more about the numbers than the students’ educational experience, which was also frustrating. 

But something happened during those three weeks we would have been holding class all day every day that I never could have predicted. A very close friend of mine who’s been battling cancer for years suddenly became gravely ill. She’d been living in Texas for a few months, and was flown to Utah for brain surgery. 

Because I wasn’t teaching, I was able to visit her in the hospital, hug her and kiss her forehead and whisper encouraging words before she headed into surgery. I was able to see her as she recovered after surgery, and again when they resumed chemotherapy. Most important of all, I was led back to the hospital on a random Tuesday afternoon when she needed a visit. And when the cheyne-stokes breathing began, just minutes later, I was there. I was able to stay with her and hold her hand and literally breathe along with her until she took her final breath. 

I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything. It is one of life’s most poignant and beautiful privileges to surround a loved one and help usher them on to the next sphere of life.

Losing a chance to teach a class and paint on location in a gorgeous national park was a heavy hit. But it doesn’t seem like much in comparison to what I gained. 

#fromthelivingroomwithJana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains.

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Advertise With Us!

PARTNERSHIP PACKAGES
Last updated 7.1.15

ALL RADIO ADS ARE EVERGREEN.  These ads will be with the show forever.  If someone downloads that show in 6 months, they will hear your ad. You pay current download value of that spot, but you get aggregate value over time. As our show grows, our prices will grow.  Lock in your rate now!

- Join the radio show that has already hit New & Noteworthy in our category in iTunes. 

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#livingroomchat is a sponsored online Twitter conversation.  It’s hosted and moderated by Michelle McCullough, with Startup Princess.  (with over 315,000 followers)

Living Room Chat sponsorships include:
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We can also include sponsors hashtag (if you have one) in our tweets

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Finding Balance in Nature

In our first episode, titled "Self-Care and Preservation," I talked briefly about how hiking outdoors helped me rediscover my center and find joy during a serious bout of post-partum depression. I want to share how and why this helps me find balance in a chaotic world.

A couple of years ago I was invited to speak at the Story At Home Conference, in Salt Lake City, Utah. I was asked to address the topic of Balance, chiefly the way we balance our real-life and online activities. The assignment surprised me—In fact my husband laughed out loud when I told him my topic. I'm actually one of the most UN-balanced people I know, perpetually wobbling in pursuit of that ever-elusive ideal. 

As I explored thoughts and research for my presentation, I hit a huge roadblock and was unable to finish writing my speech...until I forced myself outdoors for a breather. 

Suddenly a whole world of ideas came to me rapidly, and the speech came together in my head, packaged like a gift from God. What I re-realized in that moment was my complete focus on the task at hand (writing the speech) was putting me out of balance with my body and soul. Once I got outdoors I was rebalanced, and I could think so much more clearly. All that banging my head against a proverbial wall became almost effortless in its completion. I determined that balance needs to cover not just online and off-line activites, but four areas of the self: Physical, Educational, Social/Emotional and Spiritual. 

What I learned, and continue to learn, is that when I'm on the trail I'm in perfect balance because I'm attending to all four areas of my self at once: Whether strolling along a riverbank or climbing a steep cliff, I'm physically active. I'm inhaling lungfuls of cedar. I'm stimulating my mind (perhaps I'm identifying wildflowers, spotting animal tracks, or plotting a trail on a map). If I take a friend or two, I'm socializing; if I choose to go alone, I'm contemplating. Even then I exchange smiles and hellos with a handful or strangers on the trail. And ALWAYS I'm communing with the heavens: As light sparkles in running water that gurgles over rocks in a stream, leaves dance in a gentle breeze, crickets chant in rhythm and hummingbirds drink the nectar of wildflowers, I feel at one with the circle of life, more in touch with the Creator of the universe. I am whole again.

Rainbow of bright light hitting rushing waterfall

#fromthelivingroom with Jana

 

   Jana Winters Parkin is an artist, writer, teacher, and adjunct art professor at UVU. She and her husband have 3 kids and 2 dogs, and she spends every day possible rejuvenating her soul in Utah's glorious mountains.

 

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Make Some LIVING Room

Starting up a new venture (the on-line radio show The Living Room) with six fabulous friends got me thinking.  
Our show is called The Living Room.

Two words:  living and room. 
Those two words have begged the question what am I doing to really make room to live?    
I need more LIVING room. 
Don't we all?!  
A favorite quote I know women love is the one that talks about life not being about the number of breaths you take but how many moments that take your breath way.  Well, breath-taking moments require space. They require living room.  Room to breath.  
Room to ponder, wonder. imagine, dream, hope, think, and feel.   
 
The older I get the busier I get.  And the harder I find it gets to carve out time to cherish breath-taking moments.   It's true.  Making room for memories--those joyful moments worth holding close to your heart--plain and simple, it takes effort.  
Recently, my family took a trip to Hawaii.  It had been planned for a year.  And it came and it went.  But sitting in the sand one day, under a tree outside our beach house with sun hat plopped on my head and book in hand, I soaked in all the beauty around me.  The clear, blue water.  The flowers on the trees I couldn't name but loved to smell.  My daughters snorkeling in the ocean.  My husband kayaking with my son.  After playing in the water with everyone, I set myself under the tree to sit and observe.  
Returning home, after 10 days of island bliss, it was crystal clear to me that I needed to enjoy my beach-day-moments.  But I needed living room so I could do it:
 
First, I cleaned out my closet.  I filled a truck with things we don't use or need anymore.  
Second, I let go of some anxieties and stress I'd been holding onto.  
Third, I forgave grievances I'd been carrying.    
 
I've decided not every day could be filled with island bliss but plenty of every day bliss is awaiting if I conscientiously make room to LIVE.
Living room is essential to finding lasting joy!
So, to keep those priceless memories made on the beaches of Oahu rich, vibrant, and joyful pieces of my soul, I'm carving out some living room.  I'm giving those memories room to live and breathe.
On a side note, I'm printing a few favorite photos from our trip to frame around the house.  I'm scrap-booking them, and in early morning meditations I'm letting my mind travel back to the island to enjoy being there in those moments.  
Yes, making "living" room is so important.  
So, what in your life needs more space to live and breathe?
Perhaps, it's time to sit back and imagine what you can do to make more "living" room. :))
Jodi Robinson   Jodi Robinson
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Meet The Living Room Co-Host Jodi Robinson

Jodi Marie Robinson lives life in layers, like the Italian ice cream Spumoni.  She juggles, family, volunteering, speaking, and writing.  Her published works with Covenant Communications include Precious in His Sight and A Royal Guardian.  Several of her essays are included in Art of Motherhood, A Mother’s Prayer, With Wondering Eye, and For Heart and Soul.  In 2004, Jodi was named Salt Lake County’s Volunteer of the Year for her motivational classes taught at House of Hope.  Mentoring women recovering from addiction has been a passion of hers for 14 years. 

She sees beauty in imperfection and believes everyone has a higher purpose and destiny.  She shares her passion for volunteer work and community service on Utah’s top-rated, KSL’s Studio 5 program.  Her website www.SHARELOVESERVE.com offers creative ideas to make a difference. 

At home, her kids and their friends know she doesn’t mind that her house is often a gathering place.  She’s a believer in Chinese fire drills, late night ice cream runs, and eating raw cookie dough.  Occasionally, she joins the kids’ slip-in-slides down her back hill or karaokes a favorite pop song while carpooling (to her teenagers shagrin). 

She’s been married to her husband, Christian, for 24 years and loves that he can fix anything!  Together they have four children (ages 10-19).  Her oldest is serving a mission for their church in Seoul, Korea.  Their family enjoys snowmobiling, hiking, biking, four wheeling, and vacationing in a tiny, Idaho town called Paris.  

http://www.shareloveserve.com/

https://www.facebook.com/jodi.m.robinson

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Meet The Living Room Co-host Jana Parkin

 

Jana Winters Parkin spent most of her adult life in Los Angeles, where she served a mission, studied at the Otis Art Institute, was an Art Director at AS-UCLA, and ran her own design firm—while raising three spirited children. Specializing in design for non-profit organizations, she worked with many high-profile clients including Paul Newman/The Newman Center, Melanie Griffiths/Sabera Foundation, Michelle Pfeiffer/Victory Over Violence, Elizabeth Glaser/Pediatric AIDS Foundation and Los Angeles icons the Hollywood Bowl and Disney Hall.

When her filmmaker husband, Jeff, accepted a faculty position at BYU, they relocated to Utah—like Beverly Hillbillies in reverse. At that point, Jana traded her “designer to the rich and famous” career for a more peaceful regimen. She now teaches watercolor classes as an adjunct professor at Utah Valley University, explores mountain trails in the local canyons, exhibits her paintings in galleries and at janaparkin.com, and loves watching the deer, bluebirds and quail in their wooded back yard, which their youngest calls "the force of nature."

She also writes a blog at DivergentPathways.blogspot.com, where she has found the opportunity for reflection, storytelling, and connection with other writers invaluable. Jana's essays have been published in several collections, including Tell Me Who I Am and Why I Don't Hide My Freckles Any More. Her watercolors also grace the pages of a holiday classic, What Think Ye of Christmas?  Jana firmly believes the universe grants the best adventures and most poignant story-fodder to those who will treasure, write, and share their stories.

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Meet The Living Room Co-Host Christie Gardiner

Christie Gardiner is a published writer, actress, speaker, teacher, advocate, and lover of life.

As a writer, Christie has blogged for the NBA’s Utah Jazz, worked as a Director of Brand Journalism and has done freelance writing for prominent companies throughout Utah.

Christie has worked in Theatre, Television, Film, Commercials and Voice-Overs for over three decades as an actress, singer, dialect coach and director.  She relishes in the opportunity she has had to teach young artists at the Utah Conservatory of Performing Arts, Children’s Theatre of Salt Lake, and Local High Schools.

Christie finds meaning in being an advocate for victims of abuse as well as women, children and families.  To this end she has worked as a Peer Parent for families in crisis and is a contributor to the SurvivorsAre.org community where she has added her voice to their Public Service Announcements and advocacy work.

In her free time Christie enjoys writing, reading, acting, singing, cycling, yoga, traveling, scrapbooking, trying new restaurants, gardening, connecting with God and spending time with the loves of her life- her handsome husband, Doug and their three amazing children.

At the end of her life Christie wants to have lived a meaningful story with the people that she loves. Read more of Christie’s work, book a speaking engagement or connect with Christie at http://www.christiegardiner.com

Twitter: @write2christie

Instagram: @christiegardinerwriter

 

 

 

 

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Meet The Living Room Co-Host Heather Johnson

Heather Johnson M.S. completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at Brigham Young University, and has been an adjunct faculty member for the last nearly 13 years. She teaches students the principles behind successful families and the importance of families spending time together.

Beyond the classroom, Heather is also a contributor on KSL’s Studio 5, KSL News Radio, and the Matt Townsend Show. She is frequently asked to share her message of “Successful Families” with organizations and groups through speaking engagements and seminars.

In 2013, Heather also started Producing and Directing the LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER show in Northern Utah. The National Show aims to give Mother’s Day a microphone and celebrates the good, the bad and the barely rested of Motherhood.

Passionate about families, and feeling the need to share what she teaches with a bigger audience, Heather started “Family Volley” (familyvolley.com), an on-line advice column that aims to share solid and trusted advice with her readers about family, parenting, marriage, motherhood, and everything in between.

In 2011, Heather self-published her book, “Family Fun Fridays”. It is a compilation of the very best games and activities for families, with variations for families with children of all ages.

Married for 14 years, her greatest joy comes from being a wife, and mother to their 6 children (ages 13 to 3 months). Marriage and motherhood have been her most humbling adventure.

Connect with Heather at blog.familyvolley@gmail.com. On Facebook @familyvolley and on Twitter: @penandpapergirl.

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Meet the Living Room Co-host Connie E. Sokol

Connie Sokol is a mother of seven, and a favorite national and local speaker for over fifteen years at conferences and workshops. She is a core contributor on KSL TV's "Studio 5 with Brooke Walker" and a national blogger for www.ksl.com. She is a former radio host as well as newspaper and magazine columnist.

Mrs. Sokol is a bestselling author whose thirteen books include Faithful, Fit & Fabulous,The Life is Too Short Collection40 Days with the Savior, and more. Her newest book is the just-released Amazon bestseller, What Every 6th Grader Needs to Know: 10 Secrets to Connect Moms & Daughters.

She is also the creator of the Back to Basics program, refreshing your life in 8 weeks (one goal a week) or 8 months (one goal a month). This time-tested format has helped hundreds of women get back to center. The program book, Faithful, Fit & Fabulous, is available on Amazon, bookstores, or Connie's website (with group discounts). Supplemental free videos and Book Club/Group materials are also available. 

Mrs. Sokol marinates in time spent with her family and eating decadent treats. For her TV segments, blog, podcasts and more, visit www.conniesokol.com

Connie's Blog: www.conniesokol.com

Connie's Facebook: www.facebook.com/8basics

Connie's Twitter: www.twitter.com/SokolConnie

Connie's Instagram: www.instagram.connie_sokol

 

 

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Meet The Living Room Co-Host Kate Lee

Kate never thought she would abandon her children for fame.... But here she is.  Growing up Kate used to "entertain" the neighborhood by telling humorous/quirky stories about her family of 12. People couldn't believe the stories were true. She always got the same comment. "One day you need to write a book about your family." Years later she did. That book was followed by a suspense novel and then a screenplay. Her screenplay won part of "The next best movie idea" contest out of LA. She was one of 20 picked out of 4000 entries. Kate has spoken at women events and was chosen as one of the top 100 essays to listen to as part of the Listen to Your Mother-Northern Utah show. She writes for the uplifting section for KSL.com. Kate is a wife, mother of three (soon to be four) and more times then she cares to admit rejected writer. 

Follow Kate on her blog: http://www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com/

Follow Kate on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kate.r.lee.3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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TLR Show1: Self Care & Preservation

About this show:

In this day and age, a lot is asked of us and it can be easy to sacrifice for the sake of our jobs, our family or a meaningful social life. Since it doesn't seem life will change anytime soon, we're chatting about some ideas that will help! Dive into talents, create a Power Up and Power Down routine, make time for yourself and more. Have a listen!

Download this show! http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-06.mp3?type=podpage

Download the show on iTunes: http://bit.ly/TLRShowiTunes

We'd love your feedback!  If you like the show, rate it and leave a review on iTunes or send us your feedback at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Until next time, make sure you follow us on our social media channels:

TWITTER : www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

INSTAGRAM: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

PINTEREST: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Thanks for listening and give yourself some living room, today!

 

 

 

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Meet Co-Host Michelle McCullough

Meet Michelle McCullough:

Michelle McCullough is a speaker, trainer, consultant and the bestselling author of the book Make It Happen. Michelle also has a podcast that has over 1.3 million downloads to date.  She’s the creator of the Marketing Playbook and the Social Media Blueprint for Business.  She’s the Managing Director for Startup Princess, an international organization for women entrepreneurs.  In addition to Startup Princess and her marketing consulting agency, Michelle also runs Doodads Promotional Products, a company she started when she was 19.  She’s been featured on Forbes.com, Entrepreneur.com and in the 40 under 40. Michelle has two kids under 8 and knows there’s no time to mess around, it’s time to make it happen!

Check out Michelle's Website: www.speakmichelle.com

Follow Michelle on Facebook: www.facebook.com/speakmichelle

Follow Michelle on Twitter: www.twitter.com/speakmichelle

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FAQ: How Do I Listen To The Living Room?

Thank you for finding us!  We're glad you're here! 

Listing to The Living Room Radio Show is EASY!

When you go to www.fromthelivingroom.com you'll see a "widget" on the right hand side like this (you may even see it on this page):

You'll see our most recent shows right there.

If you want to see one of our older shows, click on the "View All Podcasts" link.

If you like what you hear (and we hope that you do), click on the "Subscribe to Podcast Feed" link.  You'll never have to remember when new episodes air, they'll be sent to you!

Click on this link to see our iTunes channel & subsctribe so you always get the latest: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-living-room/id1006910453

New shows are up every other week on Tuesdays at Noon MT/2:00 ET, but if you're like us and you can't wait that long, join the conversations happening on our social media channels!

Instagram: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

Twitter: www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio

Until next time, give yourself some living room, today!

 

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Launch Day Activities!

It's here!

This day has been in the making for a year! To celebrate the launch of The Living Room Show, we've put together some fun activities for you!

We don't want you to miss anything, so here's a quick checlist for you!

1. Follow us on your favorite social media channels.

Instagram: www.Instagram.com/livingroomsocial

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

Twitter: www.twitter.com/livingroomshow7

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/tlrradio  (More boards coming soon!)

2. Download and listen to one (or more) of our sample shows! (Click on the link and it will automatically download to your computer or device)

Listen on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-living-room/id1006910453

DOWNLOAD SPECIFIC SHOWS:

Self Care & Preservation: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-06.mp3?type=showpage

Motherhood In The Trenches: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-09.mp3?type=showpage

Mindful Marriage: http://toginet.com/podcasts/thelivingroom/TheLivingRoom_2015-06-16.mp3?type=showpage

If you want to find an easy way to find our shows in the future, check out this article.

3. Join our LIVE Google Hangout at 10:00 AM Mountain Time. Hear how The Living Room got started and meet the voices you'll be hearing on the show!

https://plus.google.com/u/0/events/ccia4bs9n71cuj89u6agamlavas?hl=en

4. Join our Facebook Chats & Enter our Giveaways at 11:00 AM, 11:30 AM and Noon (all Mountain Time)

www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

11:00 AM Self Care & Preservation - Do you ever feel like you're burning the candle at both ends?  We'd love to hear your tips for thriving in womanhood!

11:30 AM Motherhood In the Trenches - What are your favorite parenting tips?  Please chime in!

Noon Mindful Marriage - Whether you're single or married, we'd love to hear your thoughts on creating a mindful marriage! What did your parents do well/how could they improve? What do you and your husband do well/how can you improve? Can't wait to hear your thoughts!

Again, join the live facebook chats with our co-hosts, here: www.facebook.com/fromthelivingroom

5. Give us your feedback!

You can always email us at thelivingroomradio (at) gmail (dot) com

Leave us an iTunes Review! https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-living-room/id1006910453

6. Share The Living Room with a friend!

If you know someone who would love this show and online community, please share! Pass along our show page, share our Facebook page, or send a direct link to a show.

We're giving away prizes during our Facebook chats, but there's another way to win!  Get points for following and sharing!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you for joining us! We can't wait to hear your stories, too! 

Give yourself some living room today!

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Recent Shows
Title Date
TLR: 81 Marriage Advice I'd Give My Friends 05-01-2017
05-01-2017
TLR 80: Things I Won't Apologize For 04-25-2017
04-25-2017
TLR 65: Asking For What You Want
04-18-2017
TLR Show 77: Stillness The Living Room 03-22-2017
04-04-2017
TLR 75: Living Well with Chronic Illness 03-22-2017
03-28-2017
TLR 76: Life Balance Myth 03-28-2017
03-22-2017
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Heather Johnson

FamilyVolley.com

 

Jana Parkin

JanaParkin.com

 

Jodi Robinson

ShareLoveServe.com

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Michelle McCullough

SpeakMichelle.com


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