Sunday, April 15, 2018

My 5 Year Blogiversary

I can't believe I've had my blog for the past 5 years today. When I started this blog I really just wanted an outlet to be myself and to talk about my passions and dreams. I wanted an outlet to share pictures of my cats, my family, and my life. An outlet besides Facebook and Instagram. I wanted to tell my stories. Over time, I used my blog as an outlet to share about my anxiety and about living my passions and working my way towards my dreams. I am still working on these things and I am grateful that I can continue this journey and share this journey with others. 

I neglected this blog at times. Life got in the way. At times my depression and anxiety got the best of me. But, I always keep coming back to blogging and writing. At the end of 2017, I decided I was going to up-level my blog and really work on my blogging goals. In March I got a bit off track but I am excited to jump back into my goals. To jump back into living my passions and making my dreams and goals come true one step at a time. 

My life has changed so much over the past 5 years. I'm currently 31 when I started the blog I was 27.  I've moved three times over the past 5 years. I've gotten back into my self-care practice. I've discovered goals and dreams. I started working on my book again. I've gotten sidetracked by life and illness but I always pick myself back up. In other ways, my life has really not changed all that much. But, I am excited to see what this year blogging will bring and what changes will occur throughout this year. 

Here are my 5 year and one-year blog stats. I got the original idea from Farm Girl Miriam who recently had her 5 year Blog anniversary as well. She is one of my blogger inspirations. 

 126 Blog Posts
48,590 page views
My Most Popular Post of the Year: How To Create A self Care Routine When you are burned out 522 Views


My most popular post was Self-care is not Selfish with 236 views


My most popular post was The Miracle Morning with 134 views 


In June My most popular post was Overnight Oats!!! Cause that's How I Roll!! With 141 Views


My most popular and only post was The Magic of Solitude and Sacred Space with 56 views. Even though it didn't get many views it is one of my favorite posts that I've written. 


In October my most popular post was Wake up calls and Sacred Self-care with 64 views. I started shifting my focus on self-care and talking about finding my balance again and listening to my heart with all the rawness that can come up in life. 


In November my only post was Creativity as a spiritual practice with 66 views


In December my most popular post was The Power Of Being A Woman with 81 views


In January my most popular post was Valentine's Day Gift Ideas For the Wildly unique woman with 127 views 


In February my most popular post was How to Create a self-care routine when you are burned out with 522  views. My most popular post of February and the year. 


In March I posted one post. My Goddess Time Self-Care Routine. As of right now, this post has 180 views. 

I've enjoyed blogging the past 5 years. As you can see some months this year I didn't post. And this year I want to work on blogging monthly, up leveling my blog, reaching more people (and hopefully inspiring others), Talking more about my anxiety and how I'm dealing with it, and writing my book. 

I am excited to see where my blogging journey takes me this year and beyond. And I'm thankful to everyone who has read my blog and stuck by me in these past 5 years even when I haven't been super consistent. And everyone who is new to reading my blog as well. 


Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Mother's Day Gift Idea's For The Cat Mom

*This post contains affiliate links. This means that I  may receive a small commission if you decide to purchase any of the linked products or services. For more info,  please see my full disclosure policy.

Mother's day is right around the corner. There are all kinds of parents including moms to fur babies. I myself am a proud cat mom.
So if you are honoring a woman in your life who is a cat mom or even just want to get something for yourself. I've put together this Gift Guide for the cat mom. 

Rosanna All You Need Is Love Cat Mom Mug- I think this is a really cute mug. It's black and gold and says Cat Mom on it. Perfect for the cat mom who also loves coffee or tea.

Pfaltzgraff Cat Mom Mug- Another cat mom mug. This mug is currently $7 so it is cute and affordable. Also Gold and White.

Purr Our Conversation Sweatshirt- A great conversation starter shirt for the cat mom who loves to talk about her furbabies. Comes in XL and XXL as well as smaller sizes.

Mix No. 6 Kitty Crew Socks - Women's - I included this is my Valentine's day gift guide but these socks are seriously cute so I wanted to include them again for my Mother's day gift guide.

Betsey Johnson Two-Tone Pave Black Crystal Cat Stud Earrings- These earrings are sparkly, by Betsey Jonhson, and remind me of my cat Lucky. Plus, they are currently on sale.

Betsey Johnson Antique Gold-Tone Cat Stud Earrings- these earrings remind me of my cat Harley Rose. Also, currently on sale.

9 Lives Cats Card- I think this is the cutest card for a cat lover. It says "I'd spend all nine lives with you."

I hope you enjoyed this Mother's day gift guide for the cat mom. I handpicked all these items to feature with love.

Monday, April 2, 2018

What it's really like to have Anxiety and How I Deal With It

*This post contains affiliate links. This means that I  may receive a small commission if you decide to purchase any of the linked products or services. For more info,  please see my full disclosure policy.

This is a blog post that I’ve been wanting to write for quite a few years now. Almost since I started my blog. I literally had a draft saved for probably three years called living with anxiety. But, it never seemed like the right time to write it. Honestly, anxiety and depression are often not shed in the best light and they have a stigma attached to them.

One of the main things people will say to me is “just think positive” or “get over it” “stop using anxiety as an excuse.” These are some of the worst things you can say to someone who has anxiety.

1st telling people to just think positive is a great idea. But, it’s not that simple. I love the law of attraction and I do believe that gratitude can help. Thinking negatively 24/7 has never helped me in the long run. So, yes I do believe in finding something. Even one thing to be grateful for can make a huge difference. Keeping a daily gratitude journal even if you are grateful for your morning coffee, or your kids, or a beloved pet. Even finding one thing can really help to get out from under the cloud that anxiety and depression causes. However, you can’t magically think positive thoughts. I think telling someone that is unrealistic. I do believe in the power of affirmations. I first discovered affirmations by reading You can heal your life by Louise Hay. I started using affirmative prayer and affirmations when I was in a very dark place with my depression. At the time it was very hard for me to think positive at all. Over the years when I’ve included affirmations with other things like yoga, journaling, and even professional help it helps me much more. I also like to write affirmations down and post them around the house. One of the things I love that Louise taught was mirror work. Even just looking at yourself in the mirror and telling yourself that you love you. Often times, it can be so hard for us to accept ourselves and love ourselves especially when we live with anxiety. We feel like the reason we can’t do things and live a normal life is our own fault. We regret the things that we didn’t or couldn't do because of our anxiety. Often times it is the person with anxiety who is harder on themselves than others. When other people are hard on the person with anxiety it is often because they don’t understand what actually happens to a person when they have anxiety and what they are going through on a daily basis.

The second thing people often say in my experience is to get over it or stop using anxiety as an excuse. Most people with anxiety wish they didn't have it. We don’t ask to have anxiety and this just makes it feel like it’s our own fault. Which in turn can lead to depression. I know for me the biggest thing that causes my depression is having anxiety. I also have agoraphobia which means it is hard for me to go out alone and I’m always afraid of being in public places especially when they are really crowded. I would love to travel and live a “normal” life so not being able to do these things adds to my depression. If it was that easy for people to get over anxiety believe me we would. This is not something anyone wants to have. So, if you know someone with anxiety then it is important to be mindful. Apart of my fear is also that I will get a panic attack. Anyone who has suffered a panic attack knows how scary those can be. That can prevent people with anxiety from going out and doing things because they are afraid of having another panic attack.

Some people with panic attacks aren't sure what is going on at first. The symptoms are not just mental but can be physical as well. This can make it even scarier for the person with anxiety and panic attacks. Symptoms include increased heart rate, hyperventilating, sweating or chills, trembling, fatigue, and feeling dizzy. There are more symptoms as well. I have had all these at one time or another and it can be very scary for the person going through it.

Over the years I have learned ways to minimize my anxiety. I haven’t gotten rid of it and I’m not sure I’ll ever truly get rid of it. First, when I go out or I know I’m going to be around a lot of people I try to deep breathe. This helps to keep me grounded. I also will practice cognitive behavioral therapy and turn my thoughts from negative into positive. This is where affirmations really come in handy. As well as gratitude. I try to shift my thoughts instead of focusing on fear I focus on the positive. This does not always get rid of my anxiety or panic but it does make situations more bearable for me. The second thing I try to do when I’m in the midst of panic or anxiety is to be mindful. I will try to find a physical object to focus on. This can be a candle, a plant, a tree, or anything that catches my attention. Personally, nature is my favorite thing to gaze at when I’m feeling anxious but if there is no window I will utilize what is around me. I will try to just be in the present and enjoy the moment which can be really hard for those with anxiety and panic. But, it does give me moments of relief and makes social situations more bearable.
Some things I like to do on a daily basis are soul writing and journaling. Journaling is a great tool for getting all the muck out of our head. Especially when you have anxiety, worry, and panic all these what if thoughts can pop up in our heads. So, for me I like to get all that out in a journal or notebook. If you are worried about others seeing it you can rip up the pages and throw them away when done. I will try to write at least three pages but usually more. How many pages you write is up to you. Some days it might one or two others it might be 10. Then I always try to shift my focus to the positive. I will write a gratitude list and a prayer. There are also many journals you can utilize as well.
A guide like the Mental Health Journal Guide for Anxiety is a great place to start. Use code christina15 at checkout.
Another journal I recommend is The Stay Sacred Journal. This has really helped me to start my morning with positive thinking. It is a 21-day journal that helps to tap you into your goals, divine feminine, and positive affirmations.  

Meditation and yoga are also a major part of my practice. I’ve done many different meditations over the years but my favorites are visualization, mantra, vipassana, and Flowdreaming. I really like the meditation on the Flowdreaming app called Instant Anxiety Relief. I will use this when I start to feel anxious or before I go someplace that I know might produce more anxiety. Yoga has also helped me tremendously over the years. It helps to ground me and get me back in my body and focusing on my breath. Exercise is a great grounding tool as well. So, is going outside and getting some fresh air or splashing some cold water on your face. If I find myself in the midst of panic I will also utilize going outside and breathing in the fresh air. This can help me almost immediately to calm down. You can even take it a step further by earthing. Putting your bare feet on the ground (as long as it is safe to do so) and/or touching a tree with your bare hands if you can’t take your shoes off. There really is something to be said for hugging a tree. Nature does have it’s own natural calming effects.

Another thing that really helps with my anxiety either before I go somewhere that I know will be anxiety producing or to do on a daily basis is EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) This is when you tap on your meridian points and set up statements. These usually are statements that are true such as “I am so anxious right now but I deeply and completely love and accept myself anyway.” or “even though I have this anxiety I deeply and completely love and accept myself.” Then you would say true statements like “I’m so anxious at this party right now, I’m worried no one likes me.” Then you switch to positive statements and affirmations for the final tapping round. I love listening to Brad Yates and Margaret Lynch they have some great videos for free on YouTube as well.

These are just a handful of ways that I deal with my anxiety. There are many more ways that you can deal with it as well. If you are really struggling then I suggest seeking out a professional like a counselor or psychiatrist. This blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent a mental Health issue or any disease. Please see a professional for your mental health or physical health if you have a mental health issue or illness. This is only my personal experience and everyone is different.

Related posts:  

My Goddess Time self-care Routine

My Morning Self-Care Routine

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Monday, March 26, 2018

Goddess Time Self-Care Routine

*This post contains affiliate links. This means that I  may receive a small commission if you decide to purchase any of the linked products or services. For more info,  please see my full disclosure policy.

I first heard about Goddess time from Marianne Williamson when I was watching The Aphrodite training she had a few years ago. It was about embracing the divine feminine aspect of the archetype/goddess Aphrodite. She mentioned that in the evening shut off the work. Either around 6 or 7 PM. Especially in this digital age we tend to work all hours of the night. Sometimes things have to get done but this can lead to an overabundance of stress which can cause so many other issues. During the day we are in Athena mode the warrior goddess of the hunt and we oftentimes carry this over into our evening. But, the evening is a great time for self-care practices and embracing our inner goddess. It’s a great time to slow down. It does not need to be a long endeavor. It can be as simple as taking a warm bath with candles or drinking a cup of tea and reading a fiction book or novel. Ayurveda also recommends slowing down at night and preparing our mind and body for sleep. And trying to be asleep or at least in bed between 9:30-10PM.

If we do a daily Sadhana or yoga practice the best times are right before/at dawn in the morning and at dusk in the evening. These are usually the quietest times of the day. These are great times to even take 5-10 minutes to watch the sunrise or set.

I will be adding some practices that I do for my goddess time that I think are great to add to an evening routine. Of course, there are many things you can choose from. The important thing is finding a routine that you enjoy that you can stick with. I admit after a long day it is so easy to want to just veg out in front of the TV and eat popcorn or your snack choice. But, actually, this is not the healthiest thing we can do for our bodies, souls, our minds. After dinner, it is best to keep active in a slow way by going for a walk, reading a book, or doing some meditation.

Tantra Yoga: No I’m not talking about red tantra or sexual tantra. Tantra actually means weaving. It is the weaving together of different yoga practices. This includes asana, pranayama, mudra, and mantra. Even before I knew what Tantra yoga was I was weaving different spiritual practices together. Tantra to me is about embracing the feminine aspect of the divine. And really honoring ourselves as women. Tantra is about weaving the spiritual into our daily life and not just as a separate practice. We can’t do yoga for an hour a day and then ignore our spiritual side the rest of the day. This can be so easy to do with a hectic lifestyle and so many demands. But, even stopping to breathe for 5 minutes throughout the day can make a huge difference and change our mindset. I first heard about Tantra Yoga from Sianna Sherman and her Mythic Yoga Flow practices. The weaving together of asana, pranayama, mudra, and mantras. I then saw videos on with Psalm Isadora. Who has since passed away. But, her videos are still available online. I was attracted to her YES METHOD video and not being afraid to say yes to our dreams and ourselves. The first time I did this practice I cried because I had shoved my dreams to the side for so long. It felt good to reclaim them again.

I also heard about Womb Yoga and started reading the book  Yoni Shakti: A Woman's Guide to Power and Freedom through Yoga and Tantra.
One of my favorite books is by Sally Kempton called Awakening Shakti: The Transformative Power of the Goddesses of Yoga.

Recommended websites:

2. Qoya/Kundalini Dance: 15-30 minutes:
I first heard about Qoya in October. My heart was deeply aching and My depression had really kicked up. I needed an outlet for my grief. I found Qoya and kundalini dance which are both free based movement style of dance. You just put the music on and let your body move the way it wants to. Of course, practices like Qoya and kundalini dance can help to get started and motivated to get up and dance. It can feel strange to just move your body without thinking about what to do with your body. Especially if you come from a dance background like me. But, it is very grounding. The same with a physical yoga practice or even exercise. These are powerful tools for getting back into the body. It was a way for me to release my emotions and what I was feeling in a safe way. I started craving movement and dance. Something I hadn’t felt motivated to do in a while. Plus, it brought me back to my feminine self and inner goddess. Even if you don’t want to move or don’t want to exercise getting up for even 5-10 minutes and turning on your favorite song and just moving to it can be a great motivator.

Recommended reading:

Recommended websites:

3. Kundalini Mantra: 1 Hour
I like to recite kundalini mantras in the morning and at night. The one that I focus on most at night is So Purkh a kundalini mantra for women to recite for a man they love this could be a husband, boyfriend, friend, father, brother, or any man the woman wants to recite the mantra for. The mantra is repeated 11 times a day for 40 days. This mantra can also be used for a woman to attract her soul mate or her future husband. It usually takes about a half an hour to an hour to recite the whole thing. There are a few versions but my favorite is So Purkh by Nirinjan Kaur Khalsa.

My second favorite mantra for the evening is Mera Man Lochai. It is the prayer of longing for the beloved and is said to heal the wounds of love. It is recited for 11 days. It usually takes about 40 minutes to an hour to recite. The version I use is Mera man Lochai by Guru Raj Kaur Khalsa and Nirinjan Kaur Khalsa.

Recommended reading/music and websites:

4. Mindfulness: 15-30 minutes:
Mindfulness is something I’ve tried to practice on and off for many years now. For me Vipassana is a great way to practice mindfulness. Vipassana is a practice when you focus on your breath and body sensations. It is typically practiced twice a day. Once in the morning and once in the evening for an hour. However, I usually do 20-30 minutes. There are many audios to choose from that can help, you can do it on your own, or go to a retreat for more in-depth training and knowledge. I like to use the Insight Timer app. Loving-kindness meditation is also another meditation where you focus on giving love and kindness to others and ultimately all living things. Tonglen is an ancient Buddhist meditation for compassion. Tonglen can be done for anyone who is suffering. We take on their pain and send out relief. Another Buddhist meditation is from Nichiren Buddhism and is the chant Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo. I learned this chant when I was 13 or 14. Another chant is Hawaiian called Ho'oponopono. Its chanted Thank You, I love you, I’m sorry, Please forgive me. It can be chanted in any order. The first few times I chanted Ho’oponopono I cried. It was such a release. Not only to apologize to myself and say I love you and please forgive me because we all make mistakes in life but also to say it to others even if we never say it face to face. Some people may never know how deeply they hurt us and some we just can’t physically say I’m sorry or please forgive me or even I love you for one reason or another.

Recommended websites:

5. Bath/Reflexology: 15-30 Minutes:
Taking a bath with candles or essential oils or Epsom salt baths is a great way to wind down at the end of the day especially before bed. Epsom salts are great for achy muscles but if you have any health conditions check with a doctor first to make sure it’s okay. It also helps to detox the body so it’s not recommended if pregnant or on your menstrual cycle for precaution. Anything that detoxes your body is typically not recommended during those times. Always check with a doctor if you are pregnant. Adding essential oils is great as well. Again, check with a doctor or an herbalist prior to adding any essential oils to a bath. There are many other options like bath bombs and bubble baths. I like cruelty free and more organic options for the bath. Salt scrubs are a wonderful way to enhance your bathing experience as well as lotions. I love to rub coconut oil on my dry skin especially in the winter and summer months. But, choose organic and get virgin coconut oil for the skin. Again, don’t use if pregnant or during the menstrual cycle. Massage with oil can also detox the body. And don’t do if you are sick or feel ill. I like to do abhyanga usually in the morning but occasionally I will do it at night. Or I will just use the oil on my hair and feet before showering or taking a bath. Reflexology is another way to detox the body and relax. Don’t do if pregnant as certain pressure points can cause early labor. And press gently. If you have an illness it would be best to see a professional.

Recommended reading:

Recommended websites:

6. Reiki: 30-45 minutes sometimes 60 minutes:
Anyone can practice Reiki. After I had an experience with healing touch which is another energy healing modality I felt this lightness and happiness come over me that I hadn't felt in a long time. After that, I decided to learn about Reiki and I got a level 1 Reiki attunement so I could do self-treatments on myself. The only people who can’t practice Reiki are if you have a heart arrhythmia or a pacemaker. And you should check with a doctor if you have any other health conditions. I love to do reiki at night before I go to sleep since it relaxes me. You can also listen to a meditation tape or meditation music while you do the Reiki treatment. And drink lots of water afterward. There are some great audios online. I first started following Lisa Guyman on Youtube and her audio recordings that you can buy individually for a few dollars. Another Reiki practice is called Gassho meditation. It means two hands coming together. It is a simple practice and only takes a few minutes. I’m also a huge fan of Rebecca Campbell's sourcing meditation.

Recommended reading:

Recommended websites:

I get so excited talking about spirituality and anything woo-woo that I added some other links and book recommendations as well.

This is a full list of things to try out to add to your own goddess time ritual. Another thing you can do is creating your own new or full moon rituals. The new moon is a powerful time for bringing the new into your life and manifesting. The full moon is a great time to let things go and work on forgiveness. There are a lot more things you can do for your evening goddess time ritual. I don’t do all these things every night but I love to have options and see what feels good to me in the evening. And they can take less time than the time frames I gave. Those are time estimates based on how long I take. Some of these things you will totally jive with and some of these things may not be your cup of tea. That is the beauty of self-care. It is personal and something that everyone can experiment with and see what works best for them.

Anything I mentioned here is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. If you have an illness please seek out a professional.

What are your goddess time/evening rituals? I would love to hear them in the comments.

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