Wednesday, May 25, 2016

I Got Your Back

illustration by quotefancy.com

One of my pet peeves is empty words.

Those people say at the moment to make you feel good or to speed the conversation along just because they really don't want to invest more of their time. I say if you can't stand by what you say then don't say it at all because when the day comes I may come to collect the last thing I need is to be disappointed.

I've been having an amazing eye opening, totally inspiring last few days. Took part in a Webinar that totally blew my mind and set a new fire under my butt and had a great pow wow with an artist friend of mine last night. We got together after work started yapping and before we knew it it was past 10pm. A lot of laughs and great stuff was shared.

One of the things we both agree on is surrounding ourselves with like minded people. We hear that phrase from time to time but I think people misunderstand it. At least people who are not open to day to day growth and life changes. When I say I need to surround myself with like minded people I don't mean that I only want people that will agree with all of my ideals and opinions and choices. I mean I need to surround myself with people who like myself see glass half full, who like to see their dreams come to life, who smile and are grateful even when something they tried has failed.

I need to surround myself with Optimistic people not Drama seekers or those who attract Doom.

illustration by pinterest.com

The recurring theme in my last few days has been my own experience with empty words. 

I started blogging and returned to my photography both at the same time. I jumped in with both feet at a moment in my life when I had to start many things from scratch...again. A relationship I thought was for sure "the one" ended, I walked away from old friends and family who for years had sucked so much out of me I just couldn't do it any longer and I had to put into practice an abundance of kindness on myself.

During this time my phone contacts had only those I deemed true friends and people who I respected and was interested in building my next journey with. I sat down drafted a mass text included the links to my two new endeavors and pressed send...silence.

I must say it's been pretty much the same almost three years later with an exception here and there. My take away from this has been the follow:

-All creative souls want to be appreciated. Anything anyone creates from their ideas and builds up in their minds and comes to life is a gift given from their hearts. It takes courage to share something you love knowing not everyone will love it in the same way or even at all. It takes dedication and strength to keep going on even when you have heard that what you love is a waste of time. Appreciate the efforts in all even that which you do not understand. Be open.

-Silent Support is no support at all. I had a few friends who "said" how great it was and who "looked forward" to my writing and photos only to never even visit my page or care to press like or leave a comment. Who are quick to engage on all social media and share their own endeavors but never really immerse themselves in mine. If you support me show it. It let's me know you care and it encourages me to get better and continue to grow. Share your take on my work and spread the word. Support from those that say they love us is suppose to build. If I grow you grow, there is enough to go around for all of us.

illustration by picturequotes.com

I Got Your Back...I have yours do you really have mine?

Share your thoughts, have you had times where your dreams have been ghostly supported by friends and family? Are you the friend that receives the empty words or the one who has spoken them? Let's talk I'd love to hear your experience.

Always stress free xo
Mari

Monday, May 23, 2016

Turn it Up Tuesday

Welcome back my lovelies to another awesome week of goodness and fun. Can you believe we are reaching the end of May? We are always grateful for your visits. I had one of my picks of the week chosen as Best of the Best so go check it out. Now let's jump in and start having some fun xo!

TUT new
Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic...and having fun! Link up all of your favorite posts (old or new) and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments -- anything at all. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time! Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this link party the best that it could be!

SPONSOR OF THE MONTH

The Sponsor for May is Silly Fun Momma.
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Silly Fun Momma is a blog focused on helping moms enjoy the "wonderfully challenging adventures" that we go through every day. Nikki enjoys providing the "most honest and researched information possible in order to continue to help more families".
Be sure to stop by and check out Nikki's amazing blog - Silly Fun Momma!
We're looking for sponsors for next month! Be sure to sign up, and sponsor us for a month!
Click here to sign up for a month, or two!

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

And welcome our awesome guest host for May!

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(from the top - left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma's Ramblings | April from April Noelle | Tina from The Happy Creations | Tiffany from The Mrs Tee| Melissa from The Coupon Chronicles | Kelly from Making-More | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Mari from Living in Mommywood | Tenns from Bliss & Faith | Kimberly from Being a Wordsmith | Elaine from Ramblings of a Bad Domestic Goddess | Ginger from Does Your Sister Have Normal Hair | Bev from Eclectic Red Barn | Anuja from All I Do | Heather from Goodlicious



TUT May 2016-2

Kareen from Pink Heart String | Jennifer from MomTricks


Interested in being a guest host for the month or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly guest hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis.

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

9-Things-You-Must-do-To-Retire-EArly-1

Mari chose 9 Things You Must Do To Retire Early from Living on Fifty. "Gretchen's share was very informative I believe the earlier we start to plan the better. I am so proud to hear my daughter say I don't plan to follow in your financial footsteps because it means she has learned from my mistakes. I wish I would have had better role models and information when I was her age, great share!"

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Mari chose How to Make the Perfect Grilled Cheese for Grown-Ups from Fluster Buster. "I can't wait to try Robin's Grilled Cheese for adults as she calls it! I love all things cheese and though I know I should try to reduce and work on moderation I can't help but indulge lol so thanks for such a tasty share."

Birds on a Wire

Kareen chose Birds on a Wire Nursery Decor from Keeping It Real. "This birds on wire decor is so cute and it is easy to make! It can also be a lovely decor even if its not in the nursery."

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Kareen chose S'Mores No Bake Cheesecake Fluff from Tornadough Alli. "This is so yummy! I love anything with smores, chocolates and grahams. This sure is a must try and might even become a new favorite for the kids."

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Elaine chose Easy Avocado Bacon Egg Rolls Recipe from Home Cooking Memories. "Yum. A new recipe for my two favorite ingredients."

COPYCAT-ROSEMARY-BREAD

Elaine chose Copycat Macaroni Grill Rosemary Bread from All She Cooks. "We don’t eat out much and now I don’t have to miss this anymore since I can make it at home."

cauliflower

Jennifer chose Smoked Paprika and Cumin Roasted Cauliflower from Little Miss Dexterous. "This is SUCH a good idea! I love cauliflower but getting my kiddos to eat it has never been easy. I'm totally going to try this idea out!"

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Jennifer chose Easy Roasted Brussels Sprouts from Dizzy Busy & Hungry. "I guess I'm on a food kick, but this made me want brussels sprouts tonight. At least this is something the kids DO like!"

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Stacey chose Simple Cake Recipe using Wartime Rationed Ingredients from our very own Elaine from Ramblings of a (Bad) Domestic Goddess. "This looks absolutely delicious and so easy to make! I am definitely going to give this one a try. Thank you so much for sharing!"

Foil-Packet-Potatoes

Stacey chose Foil Packet Potatoes from Penny Pincher Jenny. "I love this idea! Cooking outdoors and family time is one of my favorite summertime activity. Thank you so much for sharing!"

DIY-Photo-Banner

Tina chose DIY Photo Banner from A Bride on a Budget. "I love simple and easy DIY's and this looks amazing. I really like the result. Thanks for sharing this cute creation with us."

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Tina chose DIY Mason Jar Gumball Machine #MakersMixup from Living La Vida Holoka. "Great project for children, amazing idea to use a mason jar. Very creative. Thanks for sharing this with us."

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Bev chose The Best Clean Eating Enchiladas from Fit Mom Journey. "Love Mexican food and now I can eat one that is healthier for you."

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Bev chose Snickers Brownies from Living the Gourmet. "Just the thought of Snickers and brownies makes my heart sing. Yummy!"

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Tiffany chose Easy No Bake Coffee Cheesecakes Recipe from Home Cooking Memories. "If I can get the tastiness of cheesecake minus the effort of actually baking it…sign me up! Thanks so much to Brandie for sharing such a great recipe!"

Grilled-Coconut-Rum-Shrimp

Tiffany chose Coconut-Rum Grilled Shrimp Recipe - only 5 ingredients! from Home Cooking Memories. "Brandie is speaking to my grill lovin’ soul with this great recipe for shrimp and a bit of kick…love that it only takes 5 ingredients! Thanks for sharing..."
Silvie also chose this post. "I love shrimp recipes and this one looks like a great one."

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Silvie chose Shabby Retired Rocker from Debby Goes Shabby. "I love seeing things get repurposed. And this rocker is absolutely beautiful."

Fresh-Mixed-Berry-Tart-Recipe

Heather chose Fresh Mixed Berry Tart Recipe from The Jenny Evolution. "We love fresh berries, and putting them on top of a creamy tart is so delicious! This is beautiful and easy to make."

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Heather chose Tres Leches Cake from O Taste and See. "I love tres leches cake. On a business trip to El Salvador I think I had tres leches with every meal. But, I've never made it at home; I'm looking forward to trying this."

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Natasha chose How Do You Cope When Motherhood is Relentless from Your Vibrant Family. "Motherhood is relentless! And just like everything else, sometimes it's hard to deal with. These are some great tips to help you cope. Great post!"

Read-to-Your-Preschooler

Natasha chose 5 Reasons You Should Read to Your Preschooler Every Day from Homeschool Preschool. "I'm a serious bookworm, and I'm so happy that my son is too! I read to him daily, and this post just helped to reassure me that I'm doing it for all the right reasons! Great post!"

Lets-Talk-About-Menopause

The post with the most views is Let's Talk About Menopause by our very own Elaine from Ramblings of a (Bad) Domestic Goddess.
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!

Epic Mommy Adventures

And the Best of the Best goes to...

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Snickers Brownies from Living the Gourmet

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Show some love to our Best of the Best bloggers this week!!!!
Best of the Best Bloggers - make sure to showcase the button below on your blog!

Epic Mommy Adventures
So now that you've seen all that we have to offer in this week's Turn It Up Tuesday,

let's get started!

- Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back.
- Link up as many posts as you'd like! The more, the merrier!
- Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends!
- Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!

Epic Mommy Adventures
Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week!
**Disclaimer: Adding your link to this link party gives permission to Epic Mommy Adventures, along with co-hosts, guest hosts, and participants of Turn It Up Tuesday, to share your posts and pictures via social media and as features, roundups, etc. with an explicit link back to the original source.**



Interested in reading all of our favorite posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays - past or present? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter's board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

I see my Value is still Less than Yours

"If you have a problem, please feel free to come to me. We can discuss anything and come to a reasonable solution."

How many times have women heard that before? Either at work or in school? How many times have you been told you are encouraged to speak up, only to be labeled difficult, uncooperative or bitchy once you have? I want to discuss two things and get you really thinking about their impact on your life, your daughter's life, your wife's, your mother's or your sister's.

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illustration by the sweetestthingblog.com

The countless articles and discussions on dress codes and how Women must cover up in order not to distract their male counter parts. I'm suppose to walk around in a sack because some dude can't stop looking at me as a sexual object. I'm suppose to hide my shape because it may arouse my co-worker. My daughter can't wear her workout clothes after class because her classmate might feel he has the right to comment inappropriately. I have to pick up a store flyer that shows me a variety of swimsuit looks for "your body type" and the models are six through eight year olds! 

You are going to sit and read this and say "it doesn't affect me?" You aren't finding a problem with this? How males react to my body is my fault? It's not the fault of continued allowed mindset of male righteousness? Females can't wear a piece of clothing because males can't control themselves. That sounds so ridiculous. How about instead of banning teaching respect for women's bodies?

Yes yes I hear the chatter now "oh but women dress to get our attention, they reveal what they have so we can admire it and approach them." That may be true and it is part of the male female interaction  but it still doesn't give a male the right to tell me how I should dress. Men wear whatever they want and women aren't disrespecting them or degrading them at every turn. Let's think about that, tell me what you feel about banning clothing items. Will it really solve the deeper issues?

illustration by hub pages.com

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illustration by engagemichigan.org

Equal pay...
For every dollar a male makes a female makes seventy nine cents. Think about that for a minute.
You have a son and a daughter both working hard both striving for similar achievements in life but your son will reach his end game faster. You have two friends both single both saving the same amount of money a week but one can't even afford to join you on that vacation you are so ready to book. You have two single parents that are now starting over but one has to down size their home because they can't afford the payments. The examples are endless I am an example myself.

When my daughter's father and I split up the only one who had a full blown lifestyle change was me. He still had his hobbies and his extras. While my friends were taking vacations and going out every weekend I was wondering how I was going to now stretch my paycheck to cover my bills. While they commented on what a great job I had  and the fact I only had one child none thought to think "she doesn't make the same amount of me as I do."

illustration by cdelf.org

Twenty one cents, that's the difference between you going away with your family and me staying in with mine. Twenty one cents is the difference between your kids going to summer camp and mine having to just stay at home. Twenty one cents is the difference between you building a nest egg and me barely surviving. Honestly think about that. Think about the many households run by women who  have to stretch what they have just to stay afloat. Also think about some have an additional strike of being a women of color.

Think about how hard the women in your life work, think about your little girl and all her dreams. Imagine how they are being taken advantage of or will be taken advantage of at some point in their lives. Will you continue to stand for that?

I see my Value is still Less than Yours. Start a conversation.

Always stress free xo
Mari

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Stop Apologizing

illustration by sarahkoontz.com

Hey my lovelies, happy Hump day!

I've been staring out the window in my office watching the cars go by and a huge smile came across my face thinking about my visit with my grandmother (baby #2) last night. She has linoleum flooring in the living room and for months now she has been very upset at the fact a piece under the sofa has torn away. She keeps asking me to fix it because "se ve muy feo (it looks very ugly)". So finally last night I invested my time on that. I had a friend of mine come with so we could take care of her floor.

During our visit and repairs I sat with her we laughed she asked the same five questions I answered in five different ways lol and we just cuddled up while my friend took care of her floor. I bought her a bag a seedless red grapes which she actually loves and expresses so. During our question session she asked about my daughter I showed her a picture of both of them on Sunday and she said "that's not me, I never met her before". I said "oh really, ok so look here is a better picture of her and I will tell her to come see you soon." I showed her a picture of my lil mama and widened the shot so she could see her face clearer. When I did this and handed her the phone I could see the joy in her eyes, she keep poking at my daughter's cheeks in the picture and smiling and giggling. I got teary eyed and had to take a deep breath. I got teary eyed on Sunday too, this situation really works on my emotions.

illustration by stepheniezamora.com

I share this story to pin point how precious life is, how valuable time is to valuable to be Apologizing for doing and being who we are.

Stop Apologizing for:
-not exercising
-exercising too much
-wearing tight jeans
-not wearing tight jeans
-having and enjoying sex with your partner or whom ever
-not having kids
-having more than two kids
-eating a piece a cake
-drinking your favorite wine
-not wearing makeup
-staying in bed all day
-going out to dinner and leaving the kid(s) at home
-buying yourself something nice
-not picking up the phone
-not following your friend on social media
-being single and loving your freedom
-choosing NOT to get married but starting your family
-being married and wanting to stay at home with your kids

Stop Apologizing for following your heart! For doing and being authentic to what makes you jump for joy and walk around with a smile on your face. For drawing outside the lines and for saying NO.

Be happy! Wake up with a smile, go to bed with a smile. Live in peace in your own skin. When the end of your journey is here what would you want your thoughts to be? Flashbacks of someone else's life or Your Life?

Always stress free xo
Mari