name='p:domain_verify'/> Always A New Day : May 2017


40 Self-Care Ideas - For The Anxious Mom

Summer is coming, and while I am SO excited to take a break from crazy routines, my anxiety has popped up as of late. What will we do with all that time? Is it okay to watch THAT much television? How will I handle the sibling rivalry on a daily basis? My head spins with the "what ifs," and it can play those mind tricks I desperately try to fight.

I am a BIG believer in ME time and self-care. When you know anxiety so well, you have to be creative and INTENTIONAL in taking care of yourself. So while summer is coming, I know that I have to make myself a priority with these self-care ideas.

1. Wake up early for quiet time/coffee/devotional.
2. Make time for your physical health. Get up and move!
3. Talk to someone and get advice.
4. Read a good book.
5. Read a good cookbook.
6. Plan out a new meal to put in your rotation.
7. Watch an old movie.
8. Watch a movie with your spouse.
9. Ask your spouse to take kids out for an hour (or more!).
10. Start a daily devotional.
11. Start a gratitude journal.
12. Color in a an adult coloring book.
13. Give yourself grace.
14. Go on a date.
15. Utilize parents days/nights out.
16. Sit down during naptime.
17. Binge watch a new show.
18. Eat that ice cream.
19. Turn off the TV and play your favorite tunes.
20. Brainstorm a list of possible new hobbies.

21. Dedicate time to learn a new hobby.
22. Take a bubble bath.
23. Enjoy a glass of wine on a Monday. Or Tuesday. Or any day.
24. Plan a weekend of nothing.
25. Pick a date and plan a girls night in.
26. Pick a date and plan a girls night out.
27. Hire a babysitter once a week.
28. Search Pinterest for a an easy DIY craft.
29. Turn off the news.
30. Pray.
31. Write down your prayers.
32. Tuck them away in a box to pray over often.
33. Spend quality one-on-one time with each child.
34. Schedule social media time so you don't get in the comparison game.
35. Try yoga at a local yoga studio.
36. Spend alone time in Target.
37. Eat lunch out alone.
38. Take a nap or lie down listening to soothing sounds.
39. Say 'no' more often.
40. Forgive yourself.

I think I can make these things work. Sure, kids need a summer break, but don't we need a break every now and then, too? Now, sit back and make your self-care "to-do" list. Take care of YOU so you can take care of them!

What's on your self-care list? Make it good because you deserve it! Happy summer - here we go!


What's On My Summer Reading List

There's something about the lack of routine, the lazy mornings, and all the pool days of summer that make reading more enjoyable. During the school year, there's just so much going on that I can barely keep my eyes open after the kids are down. But, not this summer, folks. I am about to up my reading game.

Check out what's on my summer reading list for 2017. I love to spend time finding books I know I will love. I often use the feature on Amazon that chooses selections based on your past reads. Here's what I am reading next.

Truly Madly Deeply - Big Little Lies fans? Check out another from Liane Moriarity. I have read a few of hers and can't put them down. She always grabs me with her characters, their mysteries, and their crazy lives. I will probably put her books at the top of my list!

Three Wishes - See above. I am so excited to learn she has another one I haven't read! This one follows triplet sisters as they navigate their way though marriage, work/life balance, and all the secrets. The description of "wise, witty, and hilarious" makes this a must-read for me.

Present Over Perfect - Another big recommendation has been Shauna Niequist's collection of essays. Adult life/mom life is a complicated mess of goodness and sorrow. We question our every move so I love that this book invites us "to consider the landscape of your own life, and what it might look like to leave behind the pressure to be perfect and begin the life-changing practice of simply being present, in the middle of the mess and the ordinariness of life."

Ladies' Night - I admit - bright, fun covers do grab my attention. This book follows the ups and down of a prominent lifestyle blogger who navigates through life changes and marriage woes. Sounds like the perfect light read.

The Couple Next Door - Time to switch up the light for some suspense! Lies, betrayal, twists, secrets. This one sounds juicy, and I am in. A terrible crime is committed at a dinner party, and the reader is left to decide who did it all. Which couple is to blame? Who is hiding a secret? I love a good mystery, and this one fits the bill.

The Magnolia Story - Confession: this book as been on my list for SO long. We love Chip and JoJo so I am excited to read more of their story. From her faith to her vision for her family and her business, Joana Gaines is a role model for any busy, driven mama.

Left Neglected - This book reminds me of What Alice Forgot by Liana Moriarity where a mom - in a crazy rush to get life done - get into an accident that forces her to reevaluate priorities and relationships. A book about finding yourself is the midst of chaos always has my attention.

Into The Water - Did you love The Girl on the Train? One of my favorite thrillers of all time. Now, Paula Hawkins is back to follow the stories of two deaths that bring up past secrets in a small town. There is one person who ties it all together, and we read to learn more about what connects them all. Sounds like another page-turner.

The Magic of Motherhood - I keep seeing my Insta-friends posting about this book. Anything about motherhood - the real and the raw, sign me up! This book's description says it's like a long coffee date with a dear friend. Motherhood is hard, beautiful, and scary. The content of this book acts as a support group of moms who feel they are alone in their struggles and triumphs. I can't wait to dig in!

NINE BOOKS. Is this mama too ambitious? I might be, but I am missing that escape that can only come from a good read. My book club got lost in all the crazy school year mess, but we plan to reconvene, and I am glad we have this list to get us started.

What's on your summer reading list? Need more ideas? See the books I LOVED last summer HERE. I will be back to book blogging soon and update what has been my favorite. Stay tuned!

Happy reading, friends! And happy SUMMER!

Affiliate links used - thanks for supporting Always A New Day!


Favorite Foodies on Instagram

I love me some meal planning - the more prep I do, the better choices I make. And, I get some great tips and meal ideas from Instagram. The pictures and recipes fit into what I have been working on with my diet. Well, I say "diet" loosely - I am pretty sure the queso and margaritas I had on Mother's Day weren't paleo and/or low carb :)

If you are looking for colorful, yummy, AND healthy meal ideas - check out these amazing ladies! I've linked up their accounts which will then take you to meal planning success (a.k.a. their blogs!) so check out my foodie favorites.

Paleomg - So many reasons to love Juli! Her spunk, her love of Orange Theory, her food, and her cute pup. Her latest post for this Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf has my meal planning wheels turning!

Clean Food Crush - Beware. You will want to dive into every single photo of Rachel's! The colorful eats will prove that eating healthy does have flavor and flare. She has GREAT tips on meal prep, too!

Iowa Girl Eats - I recently discovered Kristin and her gluten-free goodness. Last week, I made the Sausage, Peppers, and Mushroom Hash and HOLY YUM. Topped it with a fried egg and so good! This made for great lunches. I cannot wait to make this dish again.

Maria Emmerich - The 30 Day Ketogenic Cleanse has been eye-opening for me. There's so much to learn about the keto diet, and this book puts it all into perspective. While I want to lose some pounds, I mainly want to just FEEL better. Before I'd ever jump into anything like this, I want to learn. Follow Maria for great keto advice and recipes!

Damn Delicious - Chungah has some meals you MUST TRY STAT! I plan to do her copycat Starbucks bento boxes this week. Perfect to take on the go. And you definitely can't go wrong with any of her dinners. This shrimp pasta has been a favorite - we do zoodles instead of pasta. YUM to the O!

Love Living Whole - One of my favorite things is to have healthy ingredients (i.e. sweet potatoes, chopped veggies, avocado, hardboiled eggs) on hand to just throw in a dish. I've been inspired by Steph's posts. There are some combos I'd never come up with on my own. The breakfasts and quick lunch ideas are my favorites!

Are you hungry yet?? Go check out these foodies and start your meal planning! And if you have any foodie favorites, please share. Because FOOD is my favorite :)


How To Blog Without Stress - Two Year Blogiversary

Hip hooray - I'm officially celebrating my two year blogiversary! And....I officially still don't know what I am doing. There are SO many bloggers out there and SO many good ones at that - it can get overwhelming. When I first started, I remember some bloggers sharing that it took hours to create a post, and I thought....pffffft. I can do it in 20 minutes or less.

See my first almost year of posts. That 20 minutes of work is obvs. Sigh.

I want to produce quality work. Interesting, real-life content. I want to share what's important to me and the things that help this tired mama. Thus, this simple little anxious blogging mama wants to share how to blog WITHOUT stress. Emphasis on the little. Gigantic spotlight on the anxious.

My best tip on how to blog without stress is to share when you FEEL like sharing. Don't blog like other bloggers - blog like YOU. For me, I post when it feels like ME. When I feel like words/products/tips will make another's crazy life a bit easier.

If you look at the dates on my posts, there are some big gaps. Those gaps happen because I feel the lull and don't have the passion some days. So, I wait for it to come out or I wait for something to grab my attention that I just have to share.

Some weeks, I save the words for me. I just need to get them out but don't want to share. Some weeks, I have so much to say, I could blog for days. Don't put a number on how much you post a week. Put the words on your heart first.

I love writing. And I would love my words to do more - to add some support for my family. This blog has become such a huge part of my mom world. Such a huge part of my healing journey. If I could take that love and move it steps further, why wouldn't I?

But, you can bet those steps will be filled with passion. Encouragement. Love. But, most of all, the words will be filled with purpose.
Don't put numbers on yourself. Don't overcommit to what doesn't feel like you. Don't drift away from why you started. Do not let all of these things cause you stress in an already stressful world.

Do remember your why. Do you remember yourself. When you stick to who you are AND you share what is meaningful to you, the stress takes a step back to all the goodness you have to offer.

So while I am still so very small, I am blessed that my words have reached others. I am honored by 1 or 2 people saying they read my little bloggity blog. I still hold true to these blogging principles.

And, I hope if you want feel the urge to share - in any form - then do so on your terms. And if you have words that want to get out, let them and let them come without stress.

Let them come with heart.

Thanks for being on this journey with me.

You can see my first post ever HERE. What a difference two years has made.


My Favorite Things - A Mother's Day Gift Guide

Disclosure: Special thanks to Colorado Aromatics for the products in this post. Affiliate links are also used. As always, all opinions are completely my own. Thanks for supporting Always A New Day!

Mother's Day is coming up, and I fully believe we need to be celebrated! Whether the hubs needs some ideas or want to buy a little something for yourself, I've created a gift guide based on my favorite things. From ways to take care of yourself and your skin to a few things that I wear on repeat, it's all here! Sure, big gifts are great, but I love the ones that are practical and make everyday just a bit brighter.

Target Stackable Coffee Mug - You know I love my coffee and firmly believe that the cuter the mug, the better the coffee! Target's stackable collection is my favorite. Each mug fits perfectly under my Keurig and is fun to use - even on Monday mornings.

Knox Rose Off The Shoulder Dress - Target to the rescue again! This sweet dress caught my eye after searching for a great dress for my son's upcoming First Communion. It will pair well with my wedges here in the guide or with some simple flip flops, too!

Airwalk Furry Moc - I've been eyeing some Ugg slippers for a while, but I couldn't justify the cost. When strolling into Payless recently, I found these furry friends. They are so soft and perfect for strolling around the house.

Steve Madden Elody Wedge Sandal - I don't spend much on clothes - I like simple and have to watch the budget. But, I did grab these wedges ASAP. I love the bigger wedge Steve Madden sandals, but these beauties feel more everyday to me. Walk - don't run - to grab your cute pair!

Norwex EnviroCloth - I caught the Norwex bug thanks to my sweet friend, Dana. I am SO excited for this EnviroCloth to come in so I can safely and quickly clean my house in seconds. If you want to know more, make sure to click on the link and see what Dana can get for you!

Old Navy Jersey Swing Dress - Another dress in the rotation. And, I might go back for more colors. Over my last girls weekend, I paired this swing dress with the Steve Madden wedges. So simple and cute! I've also paired it with my Converse and simple flip flops.

Colorado Aromatics Lotion - If you love essential oils and all natural skincare products, you will love Colorado Aromatics! I have been using their Mountain Mist Hand and Body Lotion which moisturizes without leaving your hands greasy. The key ingredients - including green treat extract and avocado oil - act as an antioxidant and protect skin. If you need some pampering, I recommend Colorado Aromatics.

YETI 20 Oz. Rambler - You rarely see me without my YETI cups. This size is a favorite due to the light weight and portability. It fits perfectly in my car's cup holder and is easy to grip. An added bonus if you can get a monogrammed cup, too!

Stella and Dot Sterling Silver Charm - My sweet friend, Kellie, is a Stella and Dot stylist. I purchased these favorite earrings from her, but I am also loving their charms. This initial charm sits on a delicate necklace with each child's birthstone. Really, you can't go wrong with anything Stella and Dot.

And, I can't share my favorites without mentioning my sister (Jill Allison Designs) and all her goodies. Right now, she has these handbags/wristlets/totes that I am loving! Her new site is launching soon so make sure you give her a Facebook follow so you can know when it's live! If you see any goody you love, make sure you stop by and let her know.
And there you have it - all my current favorites rolled into one post! Happy Mother's Day to all of you! Make sure you are pampered and know how much you are LOVED!
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