12 things that are saving my life right now

There are times of year when it feels particularly hard to be motivated or excited. For me, February is one of those times.

We already live in the Pacific Northwest, which is not exactly known for being a bastion of sunshine and happiness. Stunningly beautiful, yes.

But also gray and depressing and endlessly rainy and sucking-the-vitamin-D-right-out-of-me? Oh my goodness, YES.

When my dear friend Anne posted on her blog a list of things that are saving her life right now, I could relate.

I also thought it sounded like a brilliant idea to remind myself of all the things that are pleasant and helpful and little points of figurative sunshine within my day.

Here are 12 things that are saving my life right now:

  1. Smoothies. Not only are they fast to make when you’re busy and stuck for a meal idea, but they’re also a perfect way to get in fresh fruit and even fresh greens during the winter. I also add in various superfoods like spirulina, chia, hemp, gelatin, collagen, probiotics, etc. I’m really enjoying the recipes in this book right now.

dandy blend

2. Dandy blend. This was recommended to us by our friends Mike and Genevieve at Mama Natural, and it’s pretty delicious. It comes in the biggest bag ever from Amazon and a lot of nights we make it into a warm drink with cream (like how we’d drink coffee) or blend it in smoothies during the day. It has no caffeine and has dandelion as one of the ingredients (which sounds gross, but it tastes fine and is really great for your liver).

3. My diffuser. I was actually spoiled with not one, but two beautiful essential oil diffusers this Christmas. I’ve got one in the living room and one beside my bed, and I use them both frequently, with immune-boosting oils when I’m sick, oils to help me breathe when I’m stuffed up, energizing oils on my tired days, or relaxing ones when I need to chill.

4. Sandwiches. I’ll write a post about it soon, but some of you may know that we opted to put our kids in school (for the first time after 7 years of homeschooling!), just for the remainder of this school year. I really want to be that mom who makes awesome, exciting lunches… but most days, I just can’t be. Thank you, humble sandwich, for being easy on this tired mama and well loved by my kids.

5. Earrings. On days when I just don’t have time to do much, they make me feel pretty and put together.

6. Fireplaces. Our current house has two, but it’s the large stone fireplace in our living room that I adore. We all love to cozy up on the living room couch or the kids even sprawl out with blankets and pillows right there on the floor in front of the fireplace, to read, talk, watch a show, play games, whatever. The ambience is almost like having a coffee shop in our home, minus someone to make my lattes for me.

diffuser and kindle

7. Kindle. Every night, pretty much without fail, I pull out my Kindle Paperwhite, and enjoy 10-20 minutes of calm, quiet, in-the-dark reading after everyone has gone to sleep. Ahhh.

8. Slack. When my email inbox overflows to scary proportions, I always somehow manage to keep up with our team on Slack. Best team management software I’ve used yet.

9. Storybrand. This new technique for copywriting has seriously been saving my butt as I have to turn around a lot of copy (ie. marketing writing) these days. I went to the live event in Franklin, TN back in August, which I think was well worth it to learn in a group atmosphere with Donald Miller himself. But now they’ve also made it available online, so you don’t have to travel to attend. If you sell, well, anything, you should learn the Storybrand method.

10. Pandora. I get lazy about putting on music, even though I love to listen. I bought Ryan an Amazon Echo for Christmas and he hooked up our Pandora account, and now I can simply say “Alexa, play Ed Sheeran station on Pandora” and suddenly Ed’s crooning in my fireplace-lit living room, along with other songs Pandora thinks I might like (and it’s usually right).

Screen Shot 2016-02-02 at 12.41.40 PM

11. Our kids new “creative” room (to which we just added a door- hallelujah). They spend so much more time down here than they used to, and usually doing imaginative or creative activities, which was pretty much the whole point.

12. Taking my supplements. Right now my main ones are cod liver oil, B vitamins, and an herbal Stress complex. I can’t overstate the value of taking care of myself, during busy work seasons, and especially in these winter months.

What’s saving Ryan right now…

Just for fun, I thought I would also interview EntreRyan and get him to share some of his own “saving graces” right now (so technically, this means I leaned over on the bed and poked him, and he gave me a look and removed his headphones to answer my question).

ryan's airplane tattoo
1. His awesome new tattoo. It’s a sketch of the Wright brother’s first airplane, and since he’s getting his pilot’s license right now, it’s pretty meaningful to him.

2. Treadmill desk. He puts in more miles per day than I would have thought humanly possible, so it’s a pretty good thing for him. Not to mention, people find it humorous when he has Skype calls with them and he bounces up and down, so there’s that.

ryan at treadmill

3. C25K app. This is the Couch to 5 K app on his iPhone, which he’s used to hit the 5K mark for running literally just this week. I’m super proud of him. He’s working his way up to his first marathon, hopefully this summer. In Iceland. Go big or go home, right?

4. Lulu Lemon clothes. This is a local Vancouver brand, but their athletic clothes are incredible in quality. It used to be that if he was late coming home from a trip into the city, he’d gone to the Apple store. Now he’s at Lulu Lemon.

5. Lumosity. This is a brain training app that he uses as part of his extensive morning routine.

6. Muse. Another part of his morning routine, this one is for meditation.

7. My kids (that would be, our kids, but whatever. I’m glad he loves them.)

What has been saving your life lately?

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