Up for Discussion

Today we heard a heartwarming devotional about how MOM’s group has affected someone’s life during the good and tough times. There wasn’t time to do a circle question so I’ll do one now.

Tell us how MOM’s group has affected your life?

Did you receive a meal in your time of need? Was it your first time attending and welcomed warmly? Was it a prayer said on your behalf? Is it the fact it gives you a reason to get up in the morning and leave your house? Is it the comradery, and like minded women? Or is it the 2 hours of peace and hot coffee?

We would love to know.

I personally need a reason to get out of the house or I would be cooped up 24/7. I also enjoy the socialization aspect, but also the diversity we are all similar in that we are ALL parents but beyond that we are all very different.




Wrap – Up: Tribal Fusion Bellydanicing with Erinne

Thank you all who braved the cold today, we’re happy that your could make it!

Today we has the lovely (and Holy Cow graceful) Erinne lead an exhilarating session on basic Tribal Fusion Bellydance techniques.

Tribal Fusion Bellydance in itself has only been in existence for 25 years but the art form itself has been around thousands  of years.

Taken straight from GiaiPente’s Facebook page:

“Tribal Bellydance is a multi-cultural dance style, which is influenced by nomadic tribes who traveled through the Middle East, India, Central Asia, North Africa and Spain. GaiaPente’s style encompasses traditional bellydance elements fused with modern dance styles and theatrical embellishments. Their performances combine creative improvisation with choreographies that evolve and adapt to embrace ever-changing themes.”

So now that all of us felt muscles that we haven’t felt in years you should check out a few links.

This link will take you to a video of Erinne’s partner strutting her stuff. You can also check out GiaiPente’s Blog and their Facebook Page. Now for some shameless self promotion Erinne teaches her lovely art at the Artlington Gallery, Thursday nights. Here is the link to the Event for more information.



This Week at Bethel MOM’s: Bellydance

This week the lovely and incredible (and graceful) Erinne will be showing us some moves! Bellydancing moves that is. This will be one of those days where it’s okay to leave the house in yoga pant. Yipee! It will be a gut busting good time.

Also we don’t have anyone signed up for devotional this week. Do I have any volunteers? You don’t want us to start tapping on shoulders. (Just kidding… or am I?)

See you Thursday!


Wrap up: Sandy’s Story

Thursday’s wonderful session was brought to you by Sandy. An hour and a half of just Sandy.

She started off by reading Romans 12 verse 1 and 2

 1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

The message gleaned from  these verses  was that we are constantly changing, learning,  and composting, which tied in perfectly to what Sandy was presenting.

So just a little about Sandy. She confesses that she is NOT an organized person. FAR from it. It just wasn’t her nature. She has worked hard and had to learn a thing or two to get to the level organization she’s at now.

First off you need to know what your personality type is. I did a quick Google search and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment and Enneagram Test comes up with thousands of results and free tests that you can take on your spare time (but let’s be real, who has that?!) Figuring out your personality is half the hurdle. Once you’ve done that you can better understand yourself, figure out how you deal with situations, understand your triggers and ultimately do better in your marriage, because it’s not You, it’s Me!

Once Sandy understood her personality, she had to overcome her fears. Being quite opposite of her husband in many areas of personality, there was a fear of getting lost as she explored changes in her way of doing things, specifically in becoming more of an organized person.  Along with the fear of losing herself came the fear of “turning into her husband”, which leads into to trying to hold on to yourself even more, and skipping hand in hand came the fear of failure.

This is a lot to deal with, and it takes some time but once you accept who you are, and accept your fears for what they are you can start to have a deeper knowledge of yourself and love yourself and the incremental improvements you’re trying to achieve. (See how Roman 12 1+2 come in?) This all ties into continual learning and how Sandy feels God is continually composting her life and churning and changing with an end result being something wonderful.   Also in knowing yourself Myers-Briggs states that you should intentionally do the things that don’t come naturally, so exercising the opposite. For Sandy that meant:

  • Having a day planner
  • Wearing a watch so your aware of the time
  • Schedule things in advance
  • Planning meals
  • Being intentional
    • Which leads to using your time better
    • and eating better

 This is the fun part. Handouts!

Weekly Planner

p and J

Categories for Annual Family Plan

Here are the sheets that Sandy handed out during the session. They are all word docs so you can adapt the weekly planner to your needs.  The categories are just helpful ideas to get you started.

I do not have the meal menus but you can request one.

Now we’ll walk through Sandy’s Plans.

Annual Plan

The idea behind the Annual Plan is to help communicate more effectively each persons wants, needs and ideas for the year. It was a gathering of ideas (in list form and on a spread sheet, with a chart because someone is super organized :P) and then being able to organize them into their relating categories and then setting priorities (ex. new car, car seat, paint the dining room, buy a house, enroll kids in swimming, washer on fritz, fridge is old = intend to purchase new appliance.) Once everything is on paper it allows you to remember things that you want to accomplish in the future (because none of us have the mental capacity all the time.)

Quarterly meetings are held to review the yearly plan and amend it as need be. The last meeting of the year would be a meeting to review the year and plan for the next one.

Weekly Plan

An hour or two on the weekend Sandy will go through her calendar’s for the week and schedule one thing for the morning, afternoon and evening. With it all on paper she can then see if there are too many things scheduled at one time and switch things around as need be.  She can also look at her meal plan for the week and tweak it as necessary. If you look at the handout for the weekly planner there is also space for little notes, reminders, and categorized that suit your everyday life.

Meal Planning

Sandy creates a two-week meal plan that she uses for 2 months. This works for her because her family doesn’t mind eating the same thing every-other week, and she knows that if she makes more and freeze it to be eaten 2 weeks later. With that she has MORE TIME to focus on other things than making supper. She also presented the positives of spending that extra few minutes ahead of time to make the meal plan because:

  • She not scrambling to figure out what is for supper.
    • This point leads into other things such as you can plan healthier meals, you’re not fishing around for quick things to cook.
    • It decreases the chaos in the house because you are in control and your kids pick up on that.
    • She doesn’t have to be creative RIGHT NOW! And doesn’t have to make a decision (remember she’s a P) because the decision is already made.
  • She can be more intentional.
    • She can buy larger quantities to save money.
    • Create freezer/crock pot meals.
    • She knows what is planned for the week so she doesn’t have to keep running out to “pick something up.”
    • Save time/use time more efficiently.
  • Practice, Practice, Practice.
    • Your eating the same things  4 times so there is the opportunity to tweak the recipe each time and make it better.
    • You become good at making certain things.
    • Your kids have the chance to get accustomed to new foods.
    • A rhythm is created. And guess what? YOUR KIDS CAN HELP!! It should be an age appropriate task but they can help with prep, and it’s a great way to get them involved.

Don’t get overwhelmed when it comes to meal planning, because it CAN get overwhelming with the millions of options out there.

Just some example.

Monday – Pasta
Tuesday – Rice
Wednesday – Soup
Thursday – Potatoes
Friday  – Special

You then fill in the blanks from there. You can also tailor it to your dietary needs. For example Sandy tries to have 2 meals a week that are meat free.

Hopefully this longer than normal post have given you the tools to feel in control when nothing else in life really is.

Some of the literature Sandy mentioned:

Simplicity Parenting

Organized Simplicity

Annemarie owns both book and will lend them out. There are similar ideas for a  homemade planner here by the  author of Organized Simplicity.


Up for Discussion: Getting Organized

After hearing Sandy’s story (which is coming I promise) I have a question for you.

What do you do to try to be organized?

Do you rely religiously on your crock pot?  Does your smart phone keep you reminded? (when you remember to input it into your phone) Do you have a binder?

I’ll start off.

For Christmas this year I got one of these Mom’s Ultimate Family Fridge Calendar. It takes up a ridiculous amount of space on my fridge but it’s obnoxiously large enough that  everything written on it fits, it’s legible, and there are stickers. And as long as my husband divulges his schedule with me I feel my week/month is well planned.

I love Sandy’s idea of an Annual Plan because Greg and I have ideas for what we would love to do around our house but we forget the small things because our mental libraries have tiny shelves.  I have also been mulling over developing a meal plan tailored to our household because it is the same conversation ever night I kid you not.

Me “What would you like for supper?”

Greg *Silence*

~Couple minutes go by~

Me “So you never answered my question, any thoughts, hopes or desires on what you’d like for supper”

Greg ” I don’t know, what are my options?”

Yep.  We definitely lean towards the perceiving side when it comes to supper time.


This Week at Bethel MOM’s – MOM Focus – Sandy’s Story

I hope your all thinking warm thoughts! I know I am, and will more than likely look like the Stay Puff Marshmallow Man or the Michelin Tire Mascot as I go out and shovel the snow the lovely wind blew in this weekend.

But aside from that we have a great session planned for you this week, and hot coffee to take some of the chill away. Our very own Sandy has kindly accepted to talk about her home organizational techniques. Which includes goal setting and meal planning, and as I’ve been told by others who have heard Sandy’s story, a binder and comical stories about her and Barrette.

Prepare to be enlightened, and motivated to organize.

Just a reminder we still need volunteers to do devotional and snack. You can have a look-see at the link to see what spaces are still available.

See you Thursday.



Friday Links

Be careful with me – sometimes the simple words our kids use are the most powerful ones.

Please don’t help my kids – playgrounds are supposed to be a little bit dangerous, don’t you think?

Six guaranteed low-energy toddler games – language warning, but this is hilarious. And the comments are also fantastic. Great ideas for the stuck-inside-cold-and-snowy days.

And this is a video of polar bears spying on ice cams. Polars bears are just so awesome.

Feel free to share what you find online with us – either in the comments or by email so we can post it. Happy weekend!


Wrap Up: First Day Back

Yahoo! Isn’t it great to be back and see all our familiar faces?

How was your Christmas? Hope it was good!

Annemarie gave a lovely devotional about seeing the beauty in ourselves and focusing on the good things instead of our flaws. Yes none of us are perfect, (Hollywood is all airbrushed, and aliens), but we all have something that we are good at and can be proud of, be it patience, our jobs, organizational skills, or photographic memory. These are things that make us all beautiful and awesome.

The Sign-up Schedule has been updated. In case you forget which day you volunteered for, you can check them out here. We still need people to sign-up for Devotional. You can comment below or wait till next week when the sheet goes around again.

Also Leah has a gorgeous 13 day old and would love your support with meals. If you can help I have set up a MealTrain for her, chances are you’ve been emailed already (so this is redundant and I apologize)

Have a lovely Beautiful weekend!


This week at Bethel MOM’s – We’re Back!

Welcome back Ladies!

WE ARE BACK! Yippee!  The Committee has convened and have a great Spring MOM’s planned. Come join us Thursday morning for coffee and snacks to kick start off another great season.

Couple Housekeeping Items:

  • PLEASE, please drop your children off between 9:00 and 9:20.
  • The session will start promptly at 9:30.
  • Please remember to bring a cheque or cash ($25 for the season, $4 drop-in) for registration and Heidi will happily take you money.
  • There will be sign up sheets going around to sign up for snack and devotional/prayer.
  • Please be courteous and respectful of our lovely caregivers, without them we don’t a program
  • Finally HAVE FUN!

The Blog is updated. You can check out the Schedule so you know what’s what and who’s who.

See you Thursday.