Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain                                                       an artist once he grows up.  -Pablo Picasso

Last night I spent a couple hours doodling with my daughter and two of her cousins. It was so fun to see the creativity, the spark of creation, the lines that whirled & then created the outline of a lion, a dolphin, a girls curly locks of hair. It always surprises me to see how in tune children are with diving deep within to find their belief in their own creative abilities.

First there were words of self-criticism, words of personal imperfection & disbelief in their ability. Then the drawing began. It turned into a chain of confidence boosters as one finished a small, doodled whale, then another was sparked into making a self-portrait…the chain continued on as they each complimented and cheered one another on in their pursuit of creation. It was neat to see the transformation within each little ten-year old girl. We doodled, colored, grabbed stuffed animals as inspiration for shapes and design & played for hours. It was so fun!! But the best thing of all…just letting myself play, to doodle like a little girl, to be part of the sisterhood of creativity & cheer each other on in the creative, play process.

So, today, I am going to give you (adults who have children within) some links to find play tools for your personal delight and creative possibilities.  Take some time over the next couple of weeks & just set aside some time to PLAY!! Pick a mandala to color, doodle, pull out some chalk & create on your driveway, listen to the Ted talk about the importance of play in creativity, sketch, whirl with markers, create a art journal, etc. Here are some ideas and links to fulfill this little request. Enjoy!


Creativity in business: Ted talk by Tim Brown: Tales of Creativity and Play Tim talks about the powerful relationship between creative thinking and play–with many examples you can try at home

Blog: Reflections on adult play in modern society

Color Mandala’s: Mandala’s are amazing symmetrical designs that are fun to color. Print one off and just fill in the swirls and patterns. It is very calming for the mind. Here is a great link for a variety of mandalas–

Doodle & Drawing Ideas: link to Pinterest ideas

List of 40 impressive doodle artists for your inspiration:

Create an art journal:

Well, I hope these ideas get your creativity going. Take some time to let the child within come out and PLAY!! Have a MARVELOUS, fun-filled day!! My BEST to YOU.  -Heather

Happy SOUL Day!

Image“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”  -Howard Thurman, Meditations of the Heart

You are the only you in this world. This quote speaks volumes to my heart because there is something only YOU can do, so when you find that ‘something that lights you up’—follow it, begin to know every detail of why it breathes energy into your existence, see what it is that makes you come alive. Once you find something like that…you can never let go or fear your own personal betrayal to yourself and the world.

“There is something in every one of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have. And if you cannot hear it, you will all of your life spend your days on the ends of strings that somebody else pulls.”  -Howard Thurman

I heard a beautiful metaphor yesterday about taking ideas and philosophy from all areas of life, the variety of people and religions we encounter, the beauty we see, the emotions we feel and metaphorically stringing them all together into a string of beads that symbolize the meaning of your life. So, as I read the above quote I instantly saw a visual of putting beads on a string, so I envisioned the end of this quote as allowing other people to string the beads of your life. Although, after reading it again, I understood it as being a puppet on a string. I am going to envision it like this…I will be stringing the lessons and beauty within my own life to my soul chain, instead of allowing others to pepper my life chain with what they think I need.

IMAGINE…taking a little bit of wisdom from EVERYWHERE, EVERYTHING…the wisdom of the Tao, embracing a story from Buddhism, understanding some of the beliefs of Desmond Tutu, feeling your heart sing to the teachings of Marianne Williamson, enjoying a Soul Pancake, loving the Inspiration of Dr. Wayne Dyer, adding Louise Hays movie to your collection, learning a new prayer every day, seeking guidance in the lessons nature has to offer, raising your children in a variety of beliefs, getting grateful with Sarah Ban Breathnach, and looking for the good in all things each day.

String all those beautiful things as beads on your own soul chain & imagine the beauty your soul will seek throughout your life. See, explore, be open to so many beautiful things.

ImageA Inspired idea for the HAPPY SOUL: Find something that you can literally add beads to: key chain, piece of leather, chain, necklace, bracelet, phone charm, something to hang from your car mirror, etc. Go to a craft store and find some beads that may symbolize something for your life (charms, beads that have a particular color, pattern, texture, etc).  Decide what you would like to focus on at this point in your life. Do you want to find someone to love–maybe find a red bead that can symbolize the love you desire to have. Maybe you want to find more spirit within your life—maybe you are drawn to a bird charm, a white pearl bead, a peace sign, etc. Maybe you want to focus on your kids more each day—find something playful that symbolizes your family. Begin to string these beads to create a symbolic soul chain for your life, your daily reminder of what you would like to focus your attention on. Put it somewhere to look at each day & look at each one with a prayer in your heart to put more attention on the specific areas.

-Happy Soul Day! 

Understanding the Love Language for YOUR Child

love-languageI was talking to my sister the other day about one of her five little children (5 under the age of 8) she was talking about her middle child, Jami, who is four-years-old. She was expressing frustration about how strong-willed and independent he is & how hard it is to handle him. She was at her wits end trying to figure out how to keep him from just leaving the house and going to the neighbors to play, not listening & just doing whatever he wants. We began talking through ideas and solutions that will help guide his independent, little personality.

Our conclusion—each child is different, you can’t teach them the exact same way, you can’t reward or give the same incentives, you can’t compare children, each child has their own unique strengths and challenges, so as a parent, you have to figure out what is the best fit for each individual child.

So what are some tips to help lead and guide you through parenthood…

TRUST YOU GUT: You have personal guiding values that help guide and direct you as a parent. You have good and bad feelings about certain friends your child spends time with, the television shows they like to watch, the clothes they wear, the games they play, their attitude, their influences, etc. …

Let me share a story with you that illustrates following the motherly instinct—even if your child is a teenager & doesn’t think they need your guiding protection. When I was sixteen or seventeen I was working as a demo girl at a local store. I had a man approach me & suggest that I would be a great fit for a shoe model because my feet were so small. He explained the position further, gave me his card & invited me to call him to set up an interview. I was young, flattered & thought the money would be great.  That same week I called, set-up an interview & was scheduled to meet at a local parking lot (closer to my home) & then I was to follow him to the interview spot. My mom had some strong feelings & was not about to let her teenage daughter go alone. I was the typical teen, didn’t need my “mommy” to go with me, I could drive myself…My mom was not about to let me go alone. I fought her the whole way, but she did not feel good about it, so she drove me to the parking lot. It was early in the morning & the stores were not even open. No one was around.  I got out of our family van & began to walk around the parking lot, looking for the man I was suppose to meet. A plain van with no windows began to slowly leave the back of the lot & was coming toward me. My mom saw the van nearing & stepped out of our family van. THe van saw her & accelerated and left the parking lot.  I don’t know what could have happened, but I do know I did not have a good feeling about it & was glad my mom had the feelings she did. Trust your gut!!     Moms are given guidance and gifts to help protect their children in everything they do. As a mother, have faith in knowing you are here to teach, guide, love and protect your child.

DONT LISTEN TO THE CRITIC INSIDE: Sometimes as Moms it is easy to begin to question or have self-doubts on the type of mothers we are.  There may be Miss Molly next door who can do 27 types of girls hairdo’s, is president of the PTA, sings, plays the harp, is able to do a yoga handstand in her sleep & her children all look perfect every sunday in church. BUT, that is not who YOUR child needs. Your child needs the gifts and guidance that YOU can give them. Remember: You & your child will both learn from one another–you are gifts to one anothers life. Try to focus on that, see what you can learn, stretch yourself as a parent to seek the deeper needs of your children.

My daughter reminds me of different things all the time. I truly enjoy watching her say hello and hold doors open to everyone she encounters. She shines brightly & it is a constant reminder to do the same.  I am sure over the years she watched me say hello to strangers & now I just let her say hello, but it does remind me that I too need to continue to smile, say hello & strive for connection with everyone I come in contact. Thanks KAte!

DO YOUR BEST: When all else fails just remember…You are trying to do your best! Motherhood doesn’t come with a manual. Each child is different. The challenges will change, so just continue on moment by moment & remember, you are trying to do the best you can.

BE IN THE MOMENT: Slow down, snuggle, hug, talk, look into your child’s eyes and share highlights from the day, things you need to teach and talk about, lessons learned, needs that need to be met….anything. Connecting with your child in the moment is a great start. The other day I asked my daughter Kate how she thought I showed her my love…we began a small list back and forth…hugs, drawing infiniti signs in the air, blowing special kisses, handshakes, special nighttime back scratches, nick names, snuggling & watching favorite shows…can you guess what Kate’s love language is?? smile. smile.

LOVE LANGUAGES: Every child is different & they come with special LOVE LANGUAGES that help parents know what each individual child needs. Dr. Gary Chapman and Dr. Ross Campbell created some great tools to help parents discover their child’s love language, so here are some great links to help you a little more in guiding and directing your children.

Here is a great link to the Love Languages for Children:

Link to the children’s Love Language Mystery test:

Well, that is all for now. I hope you have an amazing day!! Lots of LOVE to you and your children!! -Heather

Just be YOU & SHINE!


I thought this would be truly appropriate today to share this thought with you. My little girl is doing her first musical theater production of some of the songs from “Matilda” the musical & I wanted to dedicate this post to her. Shine my little darling. Don’t be afraid. Sing & enjoy every moment. Cherish these memories, for they are the star lights that stay with you forever! xoxo

To all of you who need to SHINE today!! JUST BE YOU! 



Have a little FAITH in Me.

Image“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely, or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy amidst the simple beauty of nature…I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.”  -Anne Frank

It always amazes me when you sit outside and notice the tiny details all around.

A couple days ago I noticed in my Maple tree hundreds of lady bug casings. At first my heart sank as I thought these little bugs had gotten stuck in the sap and perished. Then I looked closer, on other leaves there were little black and red, fuzzy-like caterpillars. I had my husband come to see if he could understand what was happening—was it a tree of transformation?? We googled the lifecycle of a ladybug and sure enough…We have a ladybug tree!! Thousands of eggs gently laid on the large Maple tree leaves. You can see the life stages throughout the tree. Miraculous!!

Just like transformation–Life changes can be hard. My husband is still going through the process of job jumping and it is not getting any easier. It is hard to see him frustrated by how long things take, how many interviews need to be done, the assessments, the call backs…

But then I see these details in nature and I am quickly reminded—everything has a perfect timing, everything grows and changes, the flow of all that is—is perfect. Nothing is left undone or forgotten. There is patience in growth. There is wisdom in waiting. There is challenge and struggle in all things. There is hope held within a new day.

If we can continue to remember this— everything happens with PURPOSE. everything moves in perfect TIMING. everything is given with GROWTH in mind. everything grows in OPPORTUNITY. everything is clear and clarity is given within the PRESENT of this moment. SEEK. LISTEN. FIND the ANSWERS within. We will begin to understand ALL is as it should be right NOW.

God just wants us to stop and seek Him. He wants us to move from doing to be open to seeking His guidance. He knows what is best for our life. He is just waiting for us to trust in Him and His guidance.

Everything around us is being done, the sun rises, the flowers bloom, the streams flow, the wind blows, the moon appears. When we are willing to stop trying to do everything on our own and have the faith that He is listening and waiting patiently to help us do anything and everything.

We must try to have a little FAITH in that!!

This reminds me of a beautiful song “Have a little faith in me.” I am going to put a couple links to a couple video clips of people singing this song. These two versions were my favorites. Just close your eyes and listen to the words.  It correlates to having faith in someone else–whether it is someone you love or I also like to think that it is having faith in God & knowing he is there through the good, the bad, the dark…etc.

This is a great version by Charly Luske  

Here is another version + video of Mandy Moore singing the same song   

Well, that is my thought for today. I hope it helps you in anything and everything you do.  Best wishes for a beautiful day.  -Heather


ImageSummer is a time of PLAY, NURTURING, LEARNING, being in NATURE, CREATING, and LOVING every MOMENT!!

Here are a few packets of fun activities, coloring pages, summer inspiration!! Have fun.


I have a passion for getting kids outdoors because of the immense good things that come from it, so I created a packet designed to teach you as a parent the importance of getting your kids outdoors.  I then created & gathered activities around things that will teach kids about nature and get them outdoors. Have fun with this!! PLEASE take the time to understand how vital it is to get our kids outdoors.


The following are two summer fun packets that I made for my little nieces and nephews for some summer fun. It is a compilation of coloring pages, summer bucket list ideas, activities, just some plain, old summer fun!

SummerFunPacket  (for younger girls)

BoysSummerFunPacket (for younger boys)

HAPPY SUMMER!! Hope these bring lots of JOY!

LOVE Padlocks

ImageLast night I went to see the wild ride of the movie “Now You See Me”–to me it was a great visual of entertainment, always wondering what was going to happen next, enjoying the magical illusions, never being able to guess the next move, wondering how each character fit. I truly enjoyed it. At the end of the movie there is a scene on a bridge & the bridge was covered in padlocks. To me it was a visual wonder & i wanted to know more, so I googled and found “Love padlocks”–people place padlocks in certain places to symbolize their love they want to hold onto–called Love padlocks.

All over the world there are specific locations, some the beginning of the padlocks is a mystery, other stories are of lovers lost, hope of lovers returning, wishes of romance, etc. It is a beautiful symbol of a cherished, heartfelt gesture.

Love is funny like that. So much of our life is seeking and finding someone to share your life with, the days, the moments, the laughter, the hurt, the pain…if you were able to meet someone & literally padlock their love, would it truly be a good idea? Would you miss the challenges that turn into making up? Would you miss the moments where you grow together? Would you begin to take your love for granted? Would you try as hard to hold on to the special feelings you have for one another? Would the affection be as passionate if you knew it could not be taken away? Would you miss the moments of insecurity that bring you back to finding a place of gratitude in your heart for one another? Would you cherish your time together?

The padlocks did remind me of a time where my husband and I were going through a hard spot emotionally and I was feeling very vulnerable to situations that could possibly ruin our relationship. I remember giving him a set of three keys and explaining they were a visual of the keys he holds to the heart of our family. One key was to symbolize each one of us in our little family & every time he looked at the keys he was to realize the importance of what he held within—our hearts.

Relationships are like that, you are given opportunities to learn from another, to invest in their life story, to see glimpses of who they really are, to be trusted with emotional keys, so remember in any relationship you are in, hold a knowing that you are unlocking a piece of someone’s padlocked heart where they hold hurts, sensitivity, hopes, dreams, and they are inviting you in to experience a part of it. Be gentle, be wise, be loving, be kind.

“Let me find the key to your heart so I can unlock your secret chambers of love; when I do find that key, I will lock myself in your heart forever.”  -unknown

ImageNow, I love the symbolic idea of these beautiful padlock places, so here are some ideas to

SPREAD THE LOVE: I think the idea of LOVE PADLOCKS is a heartfelt, loving gesture. I LOVE it!! I think it is another fun way to spread some love. So, here are a few ideas…there are world locations, so I am going to leave you with this link of some of the prime Love Lock locations

Find a location, list those you love & make a loving wish that they will fill your life with continued LOVE.

You could also do a fun family lock where everyone lists their names & makes a wish. You could hang it somewhere special in your home, yard, car mirror or find a special location that is special to your family.

Image-best wishes  Heather

FAMILY should be a safety net—how is yours holding up?

Image“When you are young, your whole life is about fun. Then, you grow up and learn to be cautious. You could break a bone or a heart. You look before you leap, and sometimes you don’t leap at all because there’s not always someone to catch you. And in life, there is no safety net.”   -unknown

I was in a department store the other day walking the video isle when I heard a young couple planning a game night on the isle next to me and discussing who should be invited. It sounded like a family game night, so it was funny to hear the husband chime in honestly “I am not sure I want to invite (so and so) she is such a killjoy.” The honest, real conversation hit me & I continued to listen..this is real life, I thought. The couple continued to debate if they should invite a specific family member & then relented knowing they ‘should.’  They called her right then and there & it was funny to hear the husband invite, then add in some possible reasons why they may not be able to come, like we won’t have anything for the kids to do or if you don’t want to, we understand. It was so interesting to hear every side of the situation from one isle over. I thought, I knew it, this does really happen!! It was just strange to actually hear it happening.

Family dynamics are an interesting thing—we all have them, some good relationships, some interesting characters, some people we don’t get along with, moments of love and hate, sarcasm or wit, lots of history together, heartbreak or heart song.

So, let me ask you this…Where do you fit in your family dynamic?? Are you a builder, a prankster, a lover, a listener, the funny one, the sarcastic one, the introvert, the extrovert, the socialite, the one who sits in the corner, the peacemaker…every one is different. Each person has their strengths, their insecurities, the way they fit, the moments they don’t.

Here are some tips, tricks and things to think about to help your family dynamic:

How well do you REALLY know your family?? have you spent enough time with them to begin to understand their likes, dislikes, their favorite hobbies, the way they joke, things that light them up, things they struggle with, the way they communicate, etc. If you don’t feel you know them as well as you should, begin to plan get togethers, have fun question and answer moments, pull out cards and have a game, while you talk about different topics.

Face time: When was the last time you had a one on one conversation with your siblings? Do you talk to them each week, monthly, daily, once a year, etc. Specific face time gives you an opportunity to get to know them, listen to their needs, begin to understand them in a personal place. Sometimes family dynamics brings about groups clicking, huddling up with specific people, jokes about one or another family member, etc, so be aware and take that personal time to have them on a one-on-one level.

Remember the golden rule: as a child we all remember our parents saying…”treat others as you would like to be treated.”  Are you treating your family the way you would want to be treated? Are you loving and kind? Are you always teasing or jabbing in fun? Do you find yourself not wanting to invite one or the other family member to a game night or event? Begin to put yourself in others shoes & try to understand how they are feeling—not invited, not involved with everyone, etc. Think of the golden rule—how would you like to be treated?

Avoid Sarcasm: In our family we grew up with the motto…”Don’t be sarcastic–its the lowest from of humor” or “Scar-casm”—even though this was our family motto my siblings are very sarcastic, sometimes very funny, other times, not so much—usually at the cost of others feelings. Indeed, it’s not surprising that the origin of the word sarcasm derives from the Greek word “sarkazein” which literally means “to tear or strip the flesh off.”  Hence, it’s no wonder that sarcasm is often preceded by the word “cutting” and that it hurts.   Here is a great article on sarcasm—title: Think Sarcasm is Funny? Think again. by Psychology today

Avoid labeling: Sure there have been times when you may have been difficult in certain situations, maybe you were the ‘black sheep’, the trouble maker, the goody goody…People may have a tendency to hold you hostage to your past behaviors, the way you use to do things, the reputation you use to have, but hold on…people do and can change, so try to avoid labeling anyone…especially your family. Give them the benefit of the doubt, learn about them at every stage within their life and love them through.

Keep your word: When you say something–mean it. Trust happens between friends, lovers and family. Do you leave your kids with someone to babysit them and then not show up on time (because they are family)? Do you arrive when a family event is planned or are you always late? Showing up on time shows you care. If you have a child, you know how important your word is—they will hold you to it. It is something sacred, it builds on the relationship between child and parent, it is your word that binds you & if it gets broken, so do feelings. So, why would adult relationships be any different?? Avoid mis-trust and frustration—keep your word. I think sometimes it is easier to abuse family in different situations, but keep this in mind…you are your word.

Have boundaries: we often are used, abused, mis-treated, mis-understood by those closest to us, so sometimes we need to have personal boundaries from those we love. You may need to have perimeters around how many days you take care of other people’s kids. Maybe you can only be around your mother-in-law once a month, not every Sunday. Maybe you need to speak your truth about a hurtful situation someone created. Maybe you just need to say No. It is okay to have boundaries. You will be better for it, which then allows you to be better for those situations. It is a win-win for everyone.       **Side note: a great song about Speaking your truth is by Sara Bareilles “Brave”

Be Kinder: I just went through a tough family situation where I needed to speak some truths, get out some negative feelings & learned a lot through it all—about myself, my feelings, but mostly realizing…I just wanted people to be kinder.

Family should be a place of safety, security, building, love and kindness. When those qualities get stripped away, we need to begin to try and find things that will help re-build the safety net that should be family. Family consists of those people who should be lifting you, building you to your best, allowing you to be who you are, freely sharing feelings, loving unconditionally. These are the people you have grown up with, they sometimes know you better than anyone else, they are the people who have been placed in your life to hopefully make it better, happier, worthwhile.

There is learning in all things—what are you learning from your family??

Something to think about.