|A brief glimpse of the sun this afternoon!|
Saturday, November 23, 2013
Friday, November 22, 2013
|The remnants of the roof|
of our neighbor's goat shed.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Friday, November 8, 2013
"We all know that war wounds are not all external,” Parlmerlee said. (Aren't the mental health wounds we have internal as well?)
"If I can only get people to look at any homeless person on the street and see the mirror image of them — the image of someone who would look socially acceptable — realize that potential, that ‘what if,’ and root for their success,' Bliss said. You can read the full article that these quotes come from by clicking here
When I shop downtown I see a lot of homeless people. I feel a Christlike love for them and a strong desire to help so I drop off donations at the homeless shelter. For the past two years after Christmas my family has dropped off sack lunches (with uplifting messages written on the paper sacks) at the homeless shelter. Last year my nieces and nephew got involved and it was a lot of fun to see them get excited about it.
The next time you see someone who may look a little scruffy,
just remember there is
a child of God
underneath all of that.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
I watched the short film that was produced and I have to say I was disappointed and it kind of made me mad. Most feature films are based on those who have schizophrenia. There is a stigma that exists about mental illness and I worry about the public's perception of mental illness after watching this.
What one person experiences with one specific illness does not mean another person will a completely different illness will experience those same symptoms. Even with the common symptoms associated with each disease doesn't mean a person experiences ALL of them. The one symptom of a manic phase where a person spends money with reckless abandon just makes me laugh because I can be such a penny pincher that I never even came close to that, even when I was first being diagnosed and experiencing mania.
Most people who think of those who are diagnosed (with any mental illness) and are in their manic state (or what in other ways can be described as their most severe bout with their specific mental illness) hear voices, are violent, hallucinate, cut out articles from newspapers thinking there are codes and secret messages contained inside, etc. Well, I don't hear voices. My illness is very different. I have been diagnosed with bipolar. I experience anxiety and depression. Medication has helped to stabilize the boat and keeps me from having manic episodes and the severe depression. But I still have anxiety and depression. So that is why I look for other ways to help alleviate those symptoms. That is why I study about chemicals contained in processed foods and in products that are easily absorbed into our skin and into the bloodstream. That is why I like to make things from scratch. I cannot control the fact that I have this disease but you better believe I am going to watch what I put into my body.
Did you know that red #40 causes irritability? (When asked, my little niece will tell you that it makes her "crazy!" It's kind of cute when I hear her say that). According to this website, it can also cause,
According to this website as a result of what the scientists have found and what the British Food Standards Agency have decided said that, "UK ministers have agreed that the six colorings will be phased out by 2009." So why is the US behind? Why aren't we changing food standards??? I think it will take consumers creating enough fuss and refusing to purchase products containing harmful dyes and additives.
Those of us with mental illnesses struggle enough as it is, we do NOT need more "stuff" affecting our behavior and how we feel!
Anytime I see a misconception on television about mental illness it makes me want to fight even harder to educate the public better. I've received training from NAMI and will continue to receive additional trainings from different resources so I can be a better mental health advocate. I will also continue to advocate medicine compliance, becoming a master of your own brain (putting good thoughts in and getting rid of negative emotions and thoughts), natural medicine like essential oils and homeopathics, and healthy lifestyle changes (not diets, because diets don't work!).
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Bacteria is what causes your armpits to smell and the doTERRA essential oils called Purify & Onguard kill the odor causing bacteria. I read that the beeswax acts as an antiperspirant.
When making this recipe, I recommend melting the beeswax first then adding and melting the coconut oil before you add the remaining ingredients. The beeswax took a long time to melt on low heat, but would melt faster if that was the only thing in your pot.
Have fun making this recipe! I found the beeswax pastilles melt faster, are easier to measure and it is cheaper to buy them through Amazon.
|I was surprised how much it made.|
I saved two of my old empty
and still had a 1/2 cup left over.
This deodorant WORKS GREAT and I LOVE it!!
Saturday, November 2, 2013
So I've never watched the Duck Dynasty Show but Uncle Si, in an interview with Fox 411, was very open about his son's mental health struggles and the strain it caused on his marriage. I love it when people are open about mental illness. That takes us one step closer to eliminating the stigma associated with it. The more open and honest people are the more educated the general public becomes.
"FOX411: You were also very honest about your son's mental health issues.
Si: Yeah he had some serious problems. The doctors finally figured out the medicine he needed and then everything was fine. Sometimes it's necessary to medicate.
FOX411: It put a lot of stress on your marriage.
Si: Oh yeah but if you think you're going to go through this life without running into some problems then you need to think again. It's not going to happen."
You can read the full interview here
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Today I was in my kid's school office and I couldn't but overhear this very distraught woman talk about some of the struggles her and her family are going through. She was very emotional and upset. I asked for her name and hope to get the ball rolling to put something together to help out this family. This is what life is all about, finding opportunities to help others and I know Heavenly Father places people in our path who need our help. I'm just glad that I recognized a need and was prompted with an idea on how to help her and get the school involved and that I was NOT too wrapped up in myself and my own problems or things to do. Sometimes it's easy for me to get caught up in my own trials and hurt. But today was different. I hope to be able to help her.
I read an incredible story posted on Facebook. There is also a little video (no sound) that you can watch here. Wow. It made me a little emotional to read. Some people passed right by the woman who was about to jump, but this bus driver stopped immediately, look where he's parked in relation to the woman. He was paying attention to what was in front of him. Let's open our eyes and look for opportunities to help rescue others, everyone needs a pick me up and to know that someone cares.
Friday, October 11, 2013
"The words spoken at general conference should be a compass that points the way for us during the coming months. If we listen to and follow the promptings of the Spirit, they will serve as a Liahona, guiding us through the unknown, challenging valleys and mountains that are ahead."—Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "General Conference—No Ordinary Blessing"
Go here for that guidance through the valleys and mountains in your life.
Monday, October 7, 2013
I love how bold Elder Jeffery R. Holland was on Saturday as he spoke about mental illness. He speaks with understanding and empathy. He gives hope and comfort. He gives counsel, direction and help. I cried throughout this whole address. Those tears were tears of healing. I encourage you to watch.
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Monday, September 30, 2013
Friday, September 27, 2013
must be sought
or the crown cannot be won. Those principles must be incorporated with[in] ourselves, woven into our constitutions, becoming a part of us, making us a centre, a fountain of truth, of equity, justice, and mercy, of all that is good and great, that from us may proceed the light, the life, the power, and the law to direct, to govern and assist to save a wandering world..."
I'll look to see who is this quote is from since I can't remember that either! But the message is so great. If you want to be a better person, a better parent, friend, or family member then AMBITIOUSLY seek after all things that are pure, virtuous, full of fidelity and godliness. Weave them into your very CHARACTER. You become the person you are as an accumulation of the what you seek, what you spend your time on.
Q:Where do you spend your time?
What choices do you make to be a person of virtue and fidelity?
What are some examples of things you spend your life, your time, with...things that are pure?
What traits are you weaving into your character to become more like God?
HE is perfectly loving, perfectly understanding, perfectly patient and more. Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ I can become more like my Father in Heaven. What a great promise!!!
It is impossible for me to achieve immortality AND eternal life if I procrastinate and waste my life spent on things that have no worth, things that detract and repel the Holy Ghost. The Crown cannot be won under those circumstances.
But if I ambitiously Seek after those four things, weaving them into my character until they become a part of me then I succeed in being worthy of God's greatest gift, eternal life, to be able to live in HIS presence, to be worthy to be there and stand before HIM because I have repented and used the Atonement daily in my life. Immortality is given to everyone who has lived on this earth through Christ overcoming death. But I also want to go home, my real home, with my perfect Father in Heaven. I yearn to hear HIM say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Enter into my glory."
Thursday, September 26, 2013
Here's the link to the recipe from Simple Healthy Tasty's website.
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Monday, September 23, 2013
"Let me tell you something that you haven't learned yet, something you haven't learned yet, something you learn only by living awhile. As you get older, you find that life begins to wear you down. Doesn't matter who you are or what you do, it happens. Experience, time, events--they all...steal way your energy, to erode your confidence, to make you question things you wouldn't have given a second thought to when you were young. It happens gradually, a chipping away that you don't even notice at first, and then one day it's there. You wake up and you just don't have the fire anymore.
Then you have a choice. You can either give in to what you're feeling, just say 'okay, enough is enough' and be done with it, or you can fight it. You can accept that every day you are alive you are going to have to face it down, that you are going to have to say to yourself...that you are going to do what you have to because otherwise you are defeated and life doesn't have any real purpose left...How did I manage to keep on going?...It's not so hard really. You just have to get past the fear."
Friday, September 20, 2013
Thursday, September 12, 2013
Heavenly Father has created our bodies in such a way that it can handle the burdens placed on them WHEN we reach out to others. I have shared that the biggest thing that has helped my recovery is through helping others because...
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
"Life is not perfect. And sometimes in your world...you need things to go exactly as you've planned....But you forget...we are here living God's plan. Sometimes things might seem like they are falling apart or going wrong because God has something better planned for us around the corner....Life is a learning journey....But sometimes I think you forget the lessons being taught."
*Persevere: "to persist in anything undertaken; maintain a purpose in spite of difficulty, obstacles, or discouragement; continue steadfastly "
Friday, August 30, 2013
I do like both conventional and natural medicine but found it interesting to read how some over the counter medications affect our bodies in the long term. That's why if I can I will take or do something that is more natural. Talk to a health care professional before you try anything. I am not your doctor. (: I can only write my OPINION on what helps me (i.e. doTERRA oils and nutrition). Some nights I do have a hard time falling asleep and that is why my favorite oil is Serenity & probably always will be! (If you become a doTERRA member, the oils are A LOT cheaper and you get loyalty reward points back that you can use for free products).
Here's a quote from that article I mentioned,
"You’re far better of finding safe and natural solutions that will actually address the underlying causes of your sleepless nights instead of just cover up the resulting symptoms."
Another reason why I like essential oils? I still have symptoms of depression and anxiety, they're just more manageable and less intense because of the medications I take. (By the way, I'll never write down medication names, which ones worked and which ones didn't. I don't think that would be right. Everyone's DNA is so unique that what didn't work for me works miracles with the next person.)
At the BRIDGES Teacher training I found that a feeling of being "choked" is a symptom of an panic attack. I experience this off and on but didn't know it was an anxiety attack. Someone in our group asked me what I do when I feel that way and I asked, "Honestly? I use this doTERRA oil called SERENITY and just rub some directly on my throat. It calms things down and the feeling goes away."
So...if I find something that has helped me combat my depression and anxiety then yes, I will share what I know. About six months ago I was miserable and thought that this was as good as my life was going to get. I was tired of being depressed for 2 1/2 months at a time and then having a good week and slipping back into depression. Most people didn't know I was depressed. Apparently I looked fine on the outside! Or...I hid it well and didn't talk about it. So what has changed since then to help turn things around? (my meds have stayed the same for years, which is a blessing)
-Learning more about Nutrition & I'm eating healthier.
-Using doTerra oils regularly (several help with anxiety and/or depression). I do sell doTERRA from my website, but I actually like an oil that a company called Young Living sells. It's an oil blend called JOY and I like it better than the doTERRA equivalent. I don't sell for them or have an account but I like the oil JOY so much that I patronize the company just for that one oil.
-My awesome and amazing mentor/coach & my mentoring group who I have learned so much from (They're amazing cheerleaders!). My mentor has helped me with my blog and has helped me overcome negative thought patterns that were holding me back and keeping me stuck.
-My Faith. I'm spending A LOT more time in my scriptures, listening to uplifting music, listening to the Mormon Channel, writing positive things about myself in my journal (helps you to learn to truly love and accept yourself), praying and spending more time that I ever have truly listening for answers.
-Exercise! I have biked & hiked this week. And I have gone up and down a ladder today picking apples! <---I consider that exercise! I'm a little worn out and I'm still not done several hours into it! Thanks to the neighbor who gave me permission to have the (organic!) apples which were just going to go to waste. Tomorrow's agenda, canning...
-Service. Through thinking of others and finding ways to serve them my life has been tremendously blessed. This is the KEY to true happiness. Like President Hinckley's father said, "Forget yourself and get to work."
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
NAMI and the TV television channel Lifetime partnered to put together what looks like an amazing film that sheds light on many mental illnesses: schizophrenia, bipolar, PTSD (from a veteran's perspective). Thanks go to these actors who chose to add their voice to the importance of mental health education.
It stirred up a lot of emotions and I could relate in so many ways. It is true that your mind is where you think, dream, struggle BUT...you have a spirit inside of you that helps you overcome the natural man. Let me explain what I mean by this. Say I have a hard time forgiving myself & letting things go (a disease symptom by the way). I can learn healthy coping skills and tools that will help me overcome negative emotions and put them behind me. I don't have control over the fact that I have this disease but I do have control over "how" I let it affect my life. Will I be a bystander in my own life? Will I let (yes let, you do still have a choice) this disease take over and control my life? Or will I be an active participant in my recovery? Will I use the right tools to fight my battles against depression? I promise that today, while my kids are gone, that I will use the Empty your Bucket tool. Will you? Comment below!
I have often said that a mental illness is not only a physiological disease but it is also a thinking disease. As I was reading my BRIDGES Teachers Manual I was amazed at the "HOW" & the "WHY" mental illness alters our thoughts. My whole goal for my blog is to not only record my journey towards healing but to empower women AND their families, to initiate dialogue and understanding, & to help women realize how much control they really do have over their illness.
In the beginning a person, like myself, can feel like they are "broken." This feeling generates negative emotions that are self-destructive like helplessness, hopelessness, & despair. Training in how to overcome your negative emotions does wonders for your recovery and happiness.
There is HELP, HOPE, RECOVERY, HAPPINESS, JOY, HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS, BALANCE, & PRODUCTIVITY available to those who struggle and this pertains to ALL of the mental illnesses, not just mine.
KUDOS to Lifetime for addressing what once was a taboo subject and kudos to NAMI for being able to get their messages out there among the general public (I can't advocate for or approve of the movie, YET...since I haven't seen it. I hope it's clean with no bad parts!). During my BRIDGES teacher training I was very impressed with the resources and education NAMI provides. Please support NAMI, they do so much good for those with a mental illness, their families, and in educating the public.
Monday, August 26, 2013
In order to leave it buried love and forgiveness is required. We have to be willing to let it go and leave it behind us. Resentment and grudges have no place taking up room and TIME in our lives. We have to empty our buckets. To learn how go here
Saturday, August 24, 2013
Here's some more info about what Provider Education is NAMI | NAMI Provider Education Program
It's a program where you get to train and educate health care professionals. You go in a team with two family members (obviously someone who has a family member with a mental illness who are also trained as Family to Family teachers), two people who have a mental illness (consumers) and are in recovery and a mental health professional who is also a family member or consumer. I think it's neat that they want the consumers in this program to have healthy relationships with their family members. We need a strong support system and family members need to be educated on how to give the right support without enabling.
As someone who worked closely with patients myself, I noticed and watched people's bedside manner from nurses to psychiatrist to therapists. Some could really use this to improve that bedside manner! But mostly, others could really use this training and insight to help them better understand their patients and be a little less judgmental and a little more compassionate.
Thursday, August 22, 2013
When I met Ben, I felt that I had just met my knight in shining armor and we talked liked old friends who hadn't seen each other in a long time. After talking all evening we did "...walk down the block, to my car," and I remember thinking, "Ask me out, already!" Haha. Ben, you are my best friend and will always be my knight in shining armor. I love you.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Meg also shared a scripture which I love, Isaiah 41:10 reads, "Fear thou not [,Amber,] for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God; I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness."
A lot times things that I hear penetrate my heart and mind and is exactly what I needed to hear. I know that this is the Holy Ghost comforting and teaching me. Heavenly Father sends the Comforter to answer prayers and to let me know of the love He has for me. I cried and was so touched when Meg said, "I have felt the Savior walk with me when I have asked for Him to. And I have felt Him stand by me and I have felt Him come just to remind me that the resurrection is real. And I have never seen Him, but I guess I don't need to because I can feel Him."
She describes a prayer which helped her accept the will of the Lord. She said, "I was praying in my heart just telling Heavenly Father how hard this was and I didn't want to do it anymore, and this is just going to be too hard for me, but I knew wasn't changing anything and I needed to accept this and I needed to move forward...and my prayer changed and I said, 'Heavenly Father, this is hard, but I can do it if You will hold me.'"
I know that my personal faith needs to increase to help me remain true to the commandments that I have been taught. The promise of the resurrection brings me hope. I want to receive the blessing of a perfect body where I will have a brain that functions the way it was designed. No more depression, anxiety, hopeless despair, or sorrow. I look forward to this and want it! The strength of my desire to receive a perfect body in the resurrection motivates me to be faithful in this life.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
I love the part in this video where it shows the woman taken in adultery because it offers a glimpse of how God forgives. Christ didn't condone her sin, He told her to go and sin no more. He showed love, tender mercy and grace. When we turn to God in prayer with a true and repentant heart, do we imagine a God with stones in hand (like the Pharisees and scribes) or do we imagine a loving Father who runs toward us and celebrates our return just as the father did in the parable of the prodigal son?
I KNOW we have a loving Father in Heaven who celebrates each and every time we repent and draw closer to Him.
God's grace through His Son Jesus Christ truly is amazing.
You can read more about the woman taken in adultery here. You can read the full account of the parable of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-32.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
My husband and I took our kids out to eat and we were pulling into the restaurant's parking lot when my husband informed me that the chickens were loose. I started to cry. I had been gracious with the neighbor goats in my garden but I had heard that chickens would destroy young tender plants...so I guess the chickens were the last straw for me. I was willing to drive all the way home to lock those little peckers up but my husband called our "downstairs" neighbor, his dad, and he rounded them up into the coop.
You work so hard all summer long tending to your garden, weeding, planting, watering that you want it to produce, to yield a great harvest. This year I've been very successful at growing volunteer onions from last year and all of this kale. (I've already harvested it twice, it keeps growing back!) I just printed some recipes because all I know to do with it is to throw in green smoothies and make kale chips.
|Dinosaur Kale on the left and White Russian Kale on the right.|
The White Russian Kale is actually a plant start that I ordered last year but didn't want to plant because of the lateness in the season so I kept it alive all fall and winter. How's that for Kale success?! (:
Thursday, August 8, 2013
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
It clearly explains in fresh, dynamic ways how to understand the principles needed to live a fruitful life with ever increasing faith. We all face obstacles. Often times unexpected events knock us off track. But this book is for people who are interested in getting back up and moving ahead. The choices we make, the attitudes we have, the pressure from friends that can sway us from the right decisions, all are part of the daily decisions we can meet head on and even use to make us stronger and better prepared to live a life of victory.
I liked how the author, Erik Norrie, talked about those interested in getting back up and moving ahead. I have a choice, to let adversity knock me down and keep me down or to get back up every time and allow adversity to strengthen and prepare for the something FANTASTIC that's just ahead. You can read that post here.
Monday, July 29, 2013
"Trials come to each of us.
Living righteously does not mean that our lives will be free of problems or sorrow, but no matter what hardships we face,
we can always rely on Heavenly Father and His Son.
They will not forsake us, and
They will give each of us the strength
to face whatever may come,
so that in the end we can truly say,
'All is well!'"
Thursday, July 25, 2013
Because of many miracles along the way her life was spared and she met another Englishman when she arrived in Utah who she later married and raised 14 children with. A few years ago a movie was made based on true stories from the experiences of pioneers in the Martin and Willie Hancart company. Here is the trailer from that movie called "17 Miracles."
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
If we react negatively to adversity and temporarily give up hope we may "miss the boat" and lose out on the rewards and blessings that the Lord had in store for us...those that were just around the corner and determinant upon our faithfulness.