Archive for November, 2008

#61 Faith Matters: A Reason for the Season

Beyond the big meals, holiday sweets, commercialization, and wrapping paper is the biggest gift any of us could ever receive — the gift of Christ and of God’s love. In this study we countdown to Christmas with a daily verse, study, activity, reflection or challenge to keep Christ in Christmas.

Some of the topics covered include:

  • The Meaning of the Manger
  • The Christmas Story
  • Give God the greatest gift
  • The Advent Tradition
  • Creating your own Scripture Countdown Calendar
  • The Nativity Story
  • A Star in the Night
  • Sharing the Meaning with Children
  • A Christmas Candle
  • Hymns of the Season
  • What we can learn from the Wise Men
  • What we can learn from Mary
  • What we can learn from Joseph
  • The Spirit of Giving

Refueling: Creating an Energy Map

Mini Makeover #60

6 pages plus
Energy Log Worksheet
Energy Mapping Printable
Online Sleep Quiz

Tired or being tired? Wondering how to give your energy a tune up? This Mini will show you how to track 17 different energy-influencing factors to see how they impact your day to day energy level.

The Mini begins with an Energy Log Worksheet. This daily inventory provides the basis for determining how to improve your energy. The second part of the Mini shows you how to convert these logs to the Energy Map–which is the fun part. The Energy Map works like a graph chart, quickly showing the trends in the highs and lows of your energy.  We wrap up with an Energy Map plan to continue collecting information to create a solid foundation for enhancing your energy.

Adapted from the online course: High Energy Living

Easy & Economical Holiday Decorating

Mini #58

15 pages

Tis the season to deck the house and this Mini will walk you through quick, easy and economical ideas to create a winter wonderland.

Within this Mini we will look at:

  • 6 ideas for Creating Holiday Centerpieces
  • Cornerstones of Holiday Decorating
  • 4 simple necessities to add a festive touch
  • Christmas Cards as Decoration
  • Garlands Galore: 10 Creative Ideas
  • Often Overlooked Decorating Ideas: Sounds & Scents
  • Pomanders
  • Advent Wreath Tradition
  • Christmas Crackers

The Mini includes additional links and resources for celebrating the season!Adapted from the 10 Weeks of Christmas Course

Beyond Magazine Madness

Mini #59
7 pages

If you are drowning in magazines or have piles of magazines you think you might need “someday” then this Mini is for you. In this seven page Mini we work step by step through creating a personal reference system to transform piles of magazines into efficient reference tools.

The Mini begins with a challenge to sort your magazines into three categories and then guides you through how to process each of these of categories to create a customized system for managing what was once a paper pile.

Adapted from Everyday Paper Piles and Paper Piles & Files

Reality Routines

Mini #57
Includes Reality Routine worksheet

Please note this Mini will not be available until November 7, 2008.

Recently I have had quite a few conversations with women about their Master Task Lists. I found that many women assumed I followed my Master Task List to a tee.  In one conversation I began explaining that the Weekly list is what is most important to me and receives 90 percent of my energy. The 2x a month tasks, monthly tasks, and quarterly tasks are all those I hope to get to (and often do) but they are not my focus. By focusing on a solid weekly routine the longer term tasks tend to be much more easy to manage because my life is managed. I may not get everything done, but I get what is most important done.

Then there are the times when life goes haywire. The unexpected trip, or unexpected guests. The overtime at work or the problem with a close family member.  The unexpected illness or the emotional rollercoaster. During these times a solid weekly routine is one tool that can help us keep our sanity and stay above the chaos.

This Mini takes you step by step through building your weekly “Reality Routine.” This is not a routine based on everything you WANT to do, but based on the “anchors” that help you stay sane, maintain balance, and feel good about home and self. By the end of this Mini you will have created a solid routine and run it through the reality test.

Faith Matters: Character Counts

Mini #56
Please note this Mini will not be available until November 7, 2008

My daughter Sammy and I were having an interesting conversation about values and character the other day. (She is thirteen.)

“How would you define character?” I asked.

She paused for a moment and said, “Character is how you define yourself, which in turn defines you.”

I loved this definition and it led me down the path of thinking carefully about character. Character is the real “you”– it is who you are when everyone is looking, and maybe more importantly, who you are when no one is looking.

In this Faith Matters study we look at fifteen important character traits found in the Bible and see how our character does (or doesn’t) embody these traits. This realistic character self-portrait provides a spring board for healthy changes.

An Attitude of Gratitude: Keeping A Gratitude Journal

Mini #53
Please note this Mini will not be available until November 7

“Gratitude turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” Melody Beattie

Developing a thankful attitude, goes a long way toward developing a more resilient, confident, and appreciative self, while also dramatically influencing life joy, contenment and inner peace. In this Mini we work thorugh practices for keeping a Gratitude Journal to increase your attitude of gratitude.

This Mini includes printable Gratitude journal pages, exercises, and prompts to help you discover the magic of this timeless tool.

Easy and Economical Homemade Gifts

Mini #55
20 pages
Please note this Mini does not open until November 7, 2008

When people are asked what gifts they remember most from past holiday seasons, often it is the handmade gifts, given from the heart. In this Mini I share 17 gift ideas that easy and economical. Instructions are porvided for 17 easy and economical homemade gifts, including:

  • Painted Glass Ornaments
  • Christmas Tree Craft
  • Journal Craft
  • Journal or Address Book
  • Magnetic Moments
  • Screen Saver
  • Decoupage Ornaments
  • Ice Cube Candles
  • Memory Bag
  • Coupon Gift Sets
  • Beautiful Bracelet
  • Decoupage Memory Box
  • Foil Stained Glass Ornament Craft
  • Magnets and Thought Stones
  • Gifts from the Kitchen
  • Mosaic Mirrors or Picture Frames (courtesy of Sammy)
  • Keepsake MemoryMemory Box Craft Box (courtesy of Sammy)

Yes! I am sending cards this year….

Mini # 54

13 pages
Includes Excel file for tracking system

Slowing down and reconnecting with others is a prime theme of the holiday season. Christmas cards can be an enjoyable part of the process when we start early and break the process down. We will begin by collecting our names.  Then next week we will break this list of names out into a realistic plan to get the cards in the mail on time.

Making Friends with Christmas Cards
My friends used to tease me because I would send my holiday cards in July. If you think I was overly organized—think again. I wasn’t sending cards six months early; I was sending cards six months late! Or, each year, I would be tempted by a great card design, invest in enough packages to cover my “send list,” then “run out of time.” One year, I discovered I had 38 unopened and unsent boxes of holiday cards! Although my intentions were good and my holiday spirit at its peak, my holiday greetings went unexpressed year after year. Finally, I made a habit of starting my holiday cards long before they were “due.” I could then think through my holiday cards, write special notes and enjoy the process versus having it become another to-do in a long list!

In this Mini we cover

  • Choosing a tracking system (an Excel file is provided for electronic filing)
  • Collecting your names
  • Creating your Card Quota
  • Creating a “Christmas Card Spiral Sender”
  • Electronic card ideas, digital cards ideas, homemade cards
  • Each week work to meet your quota, share your quota and progress on the Mini message board