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Kids’ Entrepreneur Series: Vision Boards

Kids Vision Board

One of the first things Kayne and I did for our Kid’s Entrepreneur Series was make vision boards.

I just love making vision boards, don’t you?

I’m a visual person, so I like to see my goals in color, in different fonts, in pictures.

And I wanted my son to have a clear vision of what we were working for. It’s not just to make money for money’s sake. We set goals for a reason.

Otherwise, what’s the point of having a business and making money?

Here are the final products:


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Mine’s all “Do work that matters” and “Let’s find our way with words” and “Let’s elevate the moment” and “for the love of leaves” with Scripture dead center.

Meanwhile, Kayne’s is all tractors and girls and dogs.

It cracks me up a little. Clearly he’s a boy and I’m a girl. And clearly there’s a value difference.

We’re still working on the materialism with him.

But I think the main point here, the main point of creating vision boards, is to set goals and to give yourself something to work toward. To give real visible life to your dreams. To provide motivation.

For a good half of my life, at least, I never really sat down to figure out what I wanted. I didn’t know what to “want.” I didn’t really know I had permission to “want.” Now, they are the driving force of so much that I do!

All of my “wants” are pretty abstract and value driven, but they are very clear and this vision board so perfectly represents them.

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I want my son to dream. And pursue dreams. Right now they are to “have a girlfriend,” “being rich,” “having 100 cats and 100 dogs,” and “be a rockstar like Dierks Bentley.” And apparently…tractors. Who didn’t have those kinds of dreams when they were 8?

It’s an exercise in dreaming as big as you want to.

I’m still working on “values” with him. We’re learning about setting aside money to give back and being generous. We’re also learning about how much work it takes to build a business. We’re learning about practical money saving ideas. Not everything can be about fast cars and girls (sorry guys!).

This is such a fun, eye-opening project to try with the kids. It’s a great way to get their imaginations going and start creating some goals with them. It’s also an illuminating project for you to do alongside them to bring your own goals into vision.

Here’s something to distract you. This Pinterest board is all things Vision Boards if you really want to get into it.

So, let’s hear it…

When’s the last time you created a vision board? Did anything stand out to you?

My Favorite Things Today

Sometimes, it helps amidst all the distractions, to take a step back and admire the small things that make our places special. These are a few of my favorite things today:

Marking heights on the door panel

This is one of the most charming remnants left behind by the previous occupants of our house. There are size markings up and down the entire length of the kitchen doorway. The previous family was a foster family, so the names and dates span years of family growth. We need to add our own son to this relic soon.

Quirky antique towel hanger

Even though we live in an older home, there weren’t a whole lot of pretty details characteristic of some other older homes. Except this pretty girl. She’s our towel holder inside the door of the bathroom cabinets. I just adore her!

Toddler Ink Art

Eating outside on an old vintage sheet, admiring the artwork of a busy little three-year-old: ink drawings up the complete length of both little legs. Yes, we did laugh a little, while we tsk-tsked and enjoyed our meal alfresco.

Tree full of birds nests

I have lived in the same city almost all my life and on this side of town for over 6 years. I have passed this tree countless times on family walks and commutes to work on-foot and on-bike. And apparently, I never looked up. Look at all the cute little birds nests filling the crooks and sawed-off crannies of this tree. Maybe the owners felt bad when the city removed the branches from the power lines and compensated the homeless birds, Home Makeover Bird Edition style.

What’s making you happy today?

Today I’m So Grateful for…

1. The sound of kitty snores behind me. The quiet rhythm is something you could almost meditate to, if you’re in the right mood.

2. Falling asleep next to a tiny boy, after giving his little neck a few kisses and the sound of his daddy taking him gently to his own bed and taking his place.

3. Calls from a friend who happens to be in town asking if we’d like to join her family at the park. Of course we will!

4. Remembering to add the fresh berry syrup to my oatmeal.

5. A clean oven and microwave. I almost smiled as I heated up the above oatmeal in the freshened-up microwave.

Today’s Gratitude List

A few of my favorite things:

1. Songs sung in rounds
2. First breath of air when leaving the house in the morning.
3. Being short and sitting on a seat with my legs dangling.
4. Fresh mornings when we’re more tender with one another and our inequities from the day before are washed way.
5. Air shows
6. Fresh back-to-school-like supplies
7. Family bike rides
8. Signing Peanut up for school and seeing his excitement at the thought of it.
9. Fresh ideas spinning, spinning, spinning
10. Going to bed early, waking up non-exhausted

One Scary Moment Equals More Gratitude

I normally wouldn’t post about personal medical topics, but I experienced the scariest moment of my life yesterday morning. I woke up, coughed, and suddenly couldn’t breathe. My throat closed up and I felt like I could’ve died. It was disappointing and terrifying feeling like my body had failed me. After what felt like hours, but probably was more like one minute, I sat down and finally caught a breath and then another. After an ER trip determined I was fine, I went back to life as usual, taking breathing a little less for granted and coughing a little more hesitantly.

With more breaths afforded to me, I thought it appropriate to express my gratitude for what’s been happening lately. I am so thankful for:

1. A healthy family. Everyone in my home is feeling well.
2. An exciting meeting at work this week.
3. Accidentally falling asleep with my son, watching Christmas movies, more than once this week. Daddy came in and carefully transplanted the boy into his own bed and then reclaimed his place next to me.
4. Washing dishes under the light of Christmas lights. This will never get old.
5. Putting the finishing touches of Christmas around the house.
6. Teaching the Peanut Christmas carols. We’re working on Away in a Manger, and he loves to sing it over and over and over while looking at the nativity. I am more-than-happy to oblige.
7. Watching my nephew’s church Christmas program and enjoying lunch afterward with my all-time favorite, beef tips and gravy.
8. Feeling a little like a pioneer with a freezer fully stocked with venison and frozen shredded zucchini.
9. Feeling very supported by my husband who, uncharacteristically, waxed philosophical and offered his massagin’ hands.
10. Seeing my Peanut revel in the simple joy that his own light-up Christmas tree brings him at bedtime. It makes a great night light!

Boun-sing Back!

I had a short little hiatus here from work and blogging, but I’m so glad to be back. Just a few weeks more and I’ll be taking another one for Christmas. I have encountered a surge of ideas this Monday morning after my little “refresher,” which makes every bit of the break sooooo worth it!

This past week I have enjoyed:

1. Making a new Christmas wreath and matching garland (ideas and images coming soon).
2. Thrift shopping for longer than is considered reasonable.
3. Beginning a new exciting project involving old hard covered books, picked up at said thrift store.
4. Staying at a friend’s parent’s house while my husband hunted deer. After finding three deer, our chest freezer is now fully stocked.
5. Making new friends, adult and tot-sized.
6. Feeling genuinely thankful for our home and family, Thanksgiving or not.
7. Putting lots of thought into Christmas gifts, and checking a few names off.
8. Planning Christmas decorations and traditions (daily readings with hot cocoa, Christmas movies, cutting a tree, etc).
9. Working out extra hard and coming out on the other side of the holiday 1lb lighter.
10. Going to a neat indie craft fair and soaking up the art inspiration and holiday excitement.

How was your week?

The Clarity of Glass

Studio: Perfume bottles & beakers 1 Image from IlluminatedPerfume

I think I’ve finally pinpointed my love of glass, crisp empty notebooks, air purifying plants, crisp white clothes (although I don’t own many because of a deep-seated fear of bleach), fresh air, lotus flowers, fresh real foods, water, icicles and so much more than I could list. I’ve even come to embrace the act of spring cleaning recently. The link would’ve been so blatant, had I compiled a list of some of my favorite things sooner.

These things resonate with my passion for purity and cleanliness, blank canvases and clarity, the wholesome and genuine. My most favorite people are not those with essences of mystery or muddied intentions, but those of trueness and openness. I enjoy the company of authentic people with clear intentions and clear consciences. I bask in tranquility. I have faith in a soul-cleansing God. I treasure honesty. I value sincerity. Following a pure and faultless path is grounds for clarity. And all the things I listed embody that sentiment.

Today’s Gratitude List

My inbox has been teeming with advice about daily gratitude lists from some of the health and fitness newsletters I subscribe to. Everything I’ve been reading lately stresses the importance of gratefulness on emotional, relational, and spiritual wellbeing. I’m taking it as a sign. Here’s a list of things I’m exceptionally grateful for today:

1. A hubby who went hog-wild and got everything on his to-do list done. Aside from that, he made some truly decadent cookies. He even worked on potty training all day. Who is this guy?

2. Sunshine has been out and even makes the car nice and cozy warm.

3. Preparing for a party on Saturday has got me cleaning nooks and crannies in my home that don’t get much attention. It actually feels quite refreshing.

4. Getting tickets for my mommy and me to see a play. I’m itching for a little theatrical diversion.

5. The truly uninhibited facial expressions a little two-year-old will make.

Creating Peace at Home


images courtesy of AarinFreePhoto.com

Ask me what’s wrong with the medical system I’ve been dealing with lately, and I can list off dozens of things and their myriad of negative effects. Ask me what’s going right in my home, and I’ll be stumped to give any examples. This is when you know something is off-kilter.

In an effort to find my way back to Optimistic, a friend I’ve been avoiding like leprosy, I’ve decided to force myself to feel grateful, hoping that that old adage that if I act happy I’ll be happy really works. And I have lots of hope that it does.

1. Singing someone to sleep
2. Foundational faith
3. Fresh scents
4. Inspiring colors
5. New green growth
6. Gratitude from someone else
7. Connections with depth
8. Giving old things new life
9. Skipping unabashedly
10. Sticky lollipop fingers: these can either be seen as a complete nuisance or a sign of completely immersing oneself in a sweet experience. I choose the latter.
11. A scrubbed-clean home
12. Colorful glass in the windows
13. A checked-off to-do list
14. Advice and encouragement from someone who knows, really knows
15. Central air, electricity, a steady job and creature comforts
16. A brand-new SUV that looks so “me”
17. An abundance of ideas and creative spirit
18. Discovering a new magazine: Living Crafts Magazine. Now, I’m not the bead, scrapbook, fake wreath type of crafter. I was looking for something modern, nature-inspired, inspiring in itself, and do-able and this is it!
19. Two little boys, one with amazing blue eyes and the other with shiny copper penny hair, splashing away in a kiddie pool
20. Discovering a new radio station that never bores: The Avenue.

Oh, and the Perseids. I almost forgot. I need to get out there tonight and see if I can see any last stragglers because I forgot to last night.

Swallowing My Happy Pill

I am making a concerted effort with myself to actually follow through on methods that are tried-and-true and either backed by outside research or personal experience. It’s as though I have all the arsenal I need, I just need to shoot the damn gun! In this case, we’re focusing on personal happiness.

Just like in my previous post, I know good reasons why I shouldn’t skip gym sessions, but sometimes it takes a written refresher to revive the flame. The same goes with my happiness. I know what makes me happy, but when I’m having a true downer of a day, it seems like nothing will turn it around. So, I’ll have to train myself to just take a mindless approach, choose a method, and just do it without thinking! It’s kind of a wonder I don’t spend all my time, outside of work, rolling in these daisies.

Things I know will make me happy:

1. Spending time outdoors, such as hiking, swinging at the park, or just sitting in the backyard.

2. Sun exposure. OK I firmly promote the use of sunscreen always, always, always. One of the biggest mood boosts comes from the sun, but you’re not doing your body any favors by doing it without SPF.

3. Surrounding myself with music by the likes of Beth Orton, Rusted Root, Jewel, Miranda Lambert, Little BigTown, Norah Jones or any other artsy favorites.

4. Buying something decadent in a bottle, be it eye cream, red wine, or chutney. I’m not talking about retail therapy per se or emotional eating, just personal-care therapy. Vonnegut wrote that once a man stops taking care of himself, he dies.

5. Guided meditation. I know it sounds a little fruity–I am spiritual to a certain degree, but just listening to affirmations or nature noises for a few minutes has a way of settling the respiratory and nervous systems.

6. A good Yoga session

7. A good long run

8. Remembering past accomplishments, compliments or delights. This means, ahem, I need to start/keep a gratitude journal. Referring back to memorable moments has a way of sending out those happy little brain chemicals.

9. Attending church. We all have different ideas and beliefs when it comes to religion and spirituality, but personally I always feel a little bit lighter after a good service.

10. Re-runs of Sex and the City. (well…not right after church, but anyway…)

11. A good read. Usually some good chick lit. Now, I’m a pretty selective reader and I enjoy literature with depth or antiquity. But a little charming indulgence can go a long way for my disposition.

12. Related to 11 is a good blog. I’ve found some stimulating, motivating reads online that seem to leave me in a blissful state.

13. Snuggling

14. Almost anything that has to do with the baby if it doesn’t involve a diaper or whining. My favorites are dancing with him, holding his hand, sharing food with him, watching him sleep and breathe, playing drums with him, rocking him to sleep and so much more.

15. Eating a salad or tomato mixture with fresh ingredients from my own garden.

16. Growing seedlings.

17. And probably my all-time favorite would be a great massage. I think I’m going to book one, just as a preventative measure:)