It’s 10pm on October 5th and tomorrow I will be 34 years old. Let me just say that I am SO happy to be turning 34 and not 30. This year there was no pressure to get in ‘the best shape of my life’ like there was when I turned 30. This year I am actually in the very BEST emotional shape I have ever been in & feel extremely grateful. I went through so many ups & downs in the last 10 years and would have NEVER guessed that I would be feeling this peaceful today as well as helping others (as a friend & health/life coach) navigate through their heavy emotional pasts and find their own peace.
Truth is I never believed it. I always called bullish*t on the people that told me I was going through these hard times so that someday I could help someone else through theirs.
Fast forward. Okay, I get it. It’s true. I have most definitely used all of my hard experiences to help others. Except for a few that I have been hiding away. I have been willing to share a whole heck of a lot but I have not been willing to share my WHOLE self. Yikes! It’s so scary. But I need to. I need to let go of shame & I need to let go of blame. Plus what if my story is the exact medicine that will cure another person’s need?
< MOM >
Sometimes the ones you think would never ever hurt you end up hurting you the most. Sometimes things are not at all as they seem. Imagine being an adult & realizing that your childhood past and the things in it may have been a lie. Or perhaps they were someone else’s truth (also known as a lie). That person may have never meant to hurt you or maybe they did. You will never get the chance to ask them because they will never admit anything is wrong with them and think all is wrong with you. Let me just say that mental Illness is a real b*tch. I know now that your narcism blinds you and for that I no longer blame you. I forgive you for always making it about you. I forgive you for having unrealistic expectations which led you to believe that I was constantly letting you down.
I forgive myself for always thinking that I was always letting you down. I forgive myself for not always answering the phone when you call. I forgive myself for saying no to you and protecting myself and my family from anymore hurt. I choose to believe that you are doing the best you possibly can & I will continue to love you the safest way I know how.
< Dad >
One of the breakthroughs I had just TONIGHT involved feeling dread about my birthday- no it’s not because I will be one year older- it was something else. Every year I wonder if you will remember that it’s my birthday. Some years I hear from you and some years I don’t. I forgive you for staying away. I forgive you for forgetting or maybe you just can’t bring yourself to call. It’s okay. I choose to believe you are just doing the best you possibly can & I will continue to love you the best I know how.
We can’t rise strong when we are on the run.
I won’t hide anymore. I will no longer feel ashamed or guilty. Nothing is wrong with me. I am worthy of love. Even though my life is really quite imperfect & MESSY.
Sure I hope to understand why it all happened the way it happened but for now I will embrace it and share it.
You will never guess where I’m working from right now…. Ok I’ll tell you! I’m sitting on top of a toolbox which is in the back of my giant red diesel truck which is parked in a parking lot out front of the laundromat. This is what I get for packing my weekend too full but it’s a great time to catch up with clients & check emails. 5 yrs ago I would have laughed hysterically if you would have told me I would be #1 driving a giant red truck #2 living anywhere that didn’t have a washer & dryer #3 have my own biz that is primarily online & uber flexible.
Nope, I was all set to go back to work after my son was born. I thought I HAD to. I thought that’s just what people do & so when that day came I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. I wanted to make my own hours, have NO boss & work WITH my son by my side. (This was before the book #girlboss but that book describes this desire perfectly). I also got really clear on what mattered in my life. So along this journey I sold practically EVERYTHING I owned & moved into a RV (which is why we need the big red truck!) & guess what? This is NOT the life I imagined just 5 short years ago – like not even close! BUT honestly I couldn’t be more in love with my life.
I could be totally annoyed & bothered with my laundry situation but instead I take this time to write blog posts like these. I talk to my clients, teach boot camp classes & teach essential oil classes AND homeschool my son. If you are in search of some freedom- I want you to know- it IS possible to live your dream. Never give up & keep your arrow pointed towards your truth.
If you want to learn more about becoming a health coach &/or wellness advocate- let’s chat! ❤️
I am SO excited to roll out this program! Lots of options available including your choice of a completely virtual coaching program (includes online coaching/workout videos/meal plan) or an in-person training package created especially for locals (weekly 1:1 training in an outdoor setting/coaching/goal setting/meal plan).
Or perhaps you want to get crazy fit with your best friend or group of friends (like your bridesmaids or co-workers)? We can rock out some small group training together so just ask for group rates!
My focus is making fitness super FUN- so even though you WILL push your limits; you will have so much fun doing it!
HOW TO GET MORE INFO: Complete the form below & I will be in touch with you shortly to discuss what type of fitness/nutrition program is best for YOU and when we can start working to achieve your goals.
PLEASE NOTE: I have a limited number of ‘BEST BOD’ coaching spots available- so it’s first come first serve.
Turn whatever you love into your career.
You will spend almost half of your life working so make sure that the time is well spend. Whatever you decide to plant will eventually harvest, have faith, explore and most of all enjoy whatever it is you choose to do.
I wish I wish I wish someone would have told this to me early on. Like before I racked up a ton of student loan debt to get a degree I am not using. Of course education is important, but the MOST important thing is to identify your passions & natural talents then decide how to put them to work in the world. Not sure there is a job out there for you? Cool, then you better get to work on creating one!
WOW. Tomorrow I will officially have a 5 year old son. Words simply can’t express how grateful I am for being graced with the honor & privilege of being Mom to this rad little dude JUDE. For reals though, being a Mom is tough stuff- no matter how ‘ready’ you think you are for the job- You are just NOT. I had NO idea what TRUE unconditional love looked like until Jude came along. It’s like all the vomit, poop, crying, screaming, crazy & trying times really showed ME what I was made of. As a parent, you really lay it all out on the line for your little person- there is nothing else like it. Such a blessing and a reminder that LOVE ALWAYS WINS. Perhaps some things in my childhood were not the best, but being a MOM reminds me that none of that really matters because as a parent, you are just doing the best you can with what you have. SO, the next time you see a Mom struggling to get her shopping done & keep her kids wrangled in- all at the same time- how about giving some grace & offering to help her- instead of judge her? After all, we are all in this together & I know I could have never done this without the help of a small village of friends to turn to along the way. You know who you are. Thanks ladies! xo
Thanks to you my dearest JUDE
– your strong will and curiosity keep me on my toes
-your humor reminds me to HAVE FUN DAILY and not take life so seriously
-your kind heart and desire to help others reminds me that kindness really can change the world
-your building and DIY nature makes me want to make more things instead of buy them
-your love makes me want to be a better ME
-your unique style inspires me to stay true to mine
-your desire to live a healthy life reminds me to take my own advice
-your zest for life makes me feel SO thankful to be alive
-your desire to stop, smell & pick the flowers for me makes me proud of the little man you have become
-your lack of desire to be like everyone else refreshes me
When you LIVE OUT LOUD you force me to do the same & for that I thank you.
Happy 5th Birthday my love.
I love you more than words. You stole my heart. You are the real deal. Shine On.
Jude is having a Lego + Boxing Birthday party this year. I’m super excited to teach him & his little friends some KIDboxing (hosting the party at the kickboxing gym where I work) + we will be doing some FUN Lego games too! I will post lots of pics after his party on Sunday 🙂
Tomorrow is Jude’s big day & he requested ‘anything chocolate’ -so I whipped up some gluten & sugar free Birthday Brownie Balls to send with him to preschool. Get the recipe below! (if you have to avoid nuts at your school then just replace the almonds with sunflower seeds & the PB with sun butter).
- ¾ C raw almonds
- 1 tablesoon raw cacao powder
- 12 pitted medjool dates
- 2 tablespoon all-natural organic peanut butter
- Optional Superfood Add ins: goji berries, Enjoy GF choc chips, hemp seeds, chia seeds, coconut flakes (unsweetened)
- Place almonds in a small food process or and process for about 30 seconds or until your almonds are finely chopped like almond meal. Set aside.
- Next, process the pitted dates until they become like a paste.
- Then, add the rest of the ingredients, including the almond meal, and pulse for an additional minute.
- Form dough in to balls and eat! If it is having trouble sticking, add a tablespoon or 2 of honey.
- *You can make them into bigger sized balls & then place them in cute cupcake wrappers- fun!
- **Need more balls? Double the recipe!
FYI: These are such a yummy snack- not just for birthdays 🙂
Keep it real! xo Branda
It’s here! The 2015 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. Apples top the list for the fifth year in a row!
Find out what other fruits and vegetables made the list: http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/
Keep it Real,
This workout is designed to challenge you by NOT moving but rather just holding in a static position. Use 8-10lb weights for the bicep curls. No weights? Use whatever you have- a baby, a dog, maybe some detergent bottles or soup cans? Get creative & get sweaty! Share this workout with friends & be sure to #sparklehard
Keep it Real,
Ok, so I feel kinda bad for not sharing this sooner BUT I’ve really been soaking up the benefits of living small and just finally got around to writing this. I am actually surprised at myself because I thought I’d want to blog & share EVERYTHING about our tiny house living adventure, but it’s actually been quite the opposite. This great adventure of ours has been so meaningful that I’ve been wanting to keep it mostly to myself. But, it’s time to share all about LIVING SMALL.
A little Re-Cap on how we got into Tiny House Living:
In July of 2014 we decided to sell everything we own and move from our condo (1200 square ft) to a ‘tiny house’ aka RV (300 square feet). It happened SO fast. I thought of the idea one day and then just a few days later we set it into motion. I started planning the steps to make it happen & then BOOM- there we were buying our very own RV & moving in. One thing about me is that I don’t like to just talk about great ideas. I like to take great ideas & make them come alive (luckily my husband is on board with this- too).
Let me also just add- that neither me or my husband had ever owned an RV or had much experience taking care of one- so this has been a super funny & sometimes gross part of the adventure. (I will spare you the poopy stories or rather save them for another time.)
My Goal: to live in an RV for one year.
My Hopes: to eliminate all distraction and focus on what really matters. To teach my four year old son that you don’t need things to be happy.
My Fears: that we would all hate it. That we would miss our condo and all of the items we sold. That we wouldn’t have enough water pressure to shower.
UPDATE: So now that we have been living in our tiny house RV for about 6 months……
-It only takes about 20 minutes total to clean our entire house.
-We are always close to one another. Close quarters means we cozy up ALL the time.
-Small inside space means lots of outdoor time! We are always outside and taking adventures in the area and/or sitting by our fire pit.
-Its like we are Glamping or ‘forever camping’ as I like to call it. The hippy in me loves this.
-We are living much more consciously- as we keep track of all of our energy, water & propane usage very closely.
-We don’t regret selling or miss any of the things we sold. Jude occasionally mentions missing his power wheels truck but that’s about it
*Ok because I like to keep it real I also want to share the not-so glamorous things about full time RV living……
– NO DISHWASHER. This is a huge annoyance especially because I mostly work from home & we eat almost every meal at home- so there is always a ton of dishes. I love cooking but the dishes sometimes deter me from wanting to go on new recipe making adventures.
– Waiting for hot water. If you want to shower then you better plan to turn the hot water on 30 minutes prior. If you want to do dishes- the same. We could leave the hot water on all the time but its costly so instead we plan ahead & flip it on and just wait.
-The sewage. Even though my husband handles most of the tank emptying duties- there are still many issues with clogs (need to get special toilet paper, can’t use too much etc etc). We are up close & personal with our poopy a little more than I would prefer 🙂
Take a tour of our Tiny House below:
Stay tuned for more tiny house adventure stories!
Keep it Real,