Friday, 20 January 2017

Friday Five: Five things we did and loved in Jaspar

Our Trip to Jasper National Park
As I had mentioned in my last Friday Five Post we were going to travel to many different National Parks this year since the pass was free and I wanted to travel more with my family.  Now even though Banff is technically closer we decided to take our first trip to Jasper.  I have only been there twice and my husband only once (he was born and raised in Alberta ~:)~)

Jasper is such a pretty area and so many things to see!! We travelled up through Edmonton and came into Jasper on Highway 16.  This is a nice double laned highway, but the weather had snowed the few days before so the road was slick with Black ICE. If you don't drive a lot, and even if you do, Black Ice is scary to drive on, your vehicle just slips and slides and there is really nothing you can do. So from just outside of Edson to the park entrance it was a pretty white knuckle drive and me in the passenger seat trying to find a break or a way to brace myself for impact.  

The one thing I do not like about driving into Jasper on highway 16 is you never feel like you are driving or climbing into the Mountains and all of a sudden you are just there.  My favourite part of Mountain driving is the climbing and descending and you kind of miss that when you are on highway 16. 

Now onto Five things we did and loved in Jasper
1) We ate at Jasper Pizza.  This is a little restaurant right on Connaught street. It was amazing and the food was delicious.  The kids enjoyed colouring and watching the sports on television, I was able to visit with my husband and children without a lot of background noise.  The waitress was excellent and super friendly!  So if you go to Jasper and want a place to eat check out Jasper Pizza!! 
After Pizza we explored the townsite and walked around until our feet got too cold!! My husband and I both agree that we like that the storefronts are all similar and that there are no obnoxious billboards or signages for chain restaurants like you see in the city.

2) In the morning we set out to explore many different areas of Jasper National Park.  Our first stop was Pyramid Lake and Pyramid Island.  As we drove up we noticed that Pyramid Lake Resort had ice skating areas cleared off, included a .7km loop around the lake.  Definitely, bringing our skates next time we come up to Jasper in the winter.  We walked out to Pyramid Island and I showed my family where my good friend Tara had gotten married.  Leigham thought it was pretty cool. 
I don't know if this is all kids or just my kids, but they had such a fascination with the snow and with wiping it off surfaces and picking it up.  And I make them play outside all the time, but they were seriously behaving like they had never seen snow before and would never see it again.  I promise you there is a boat load in my backyard and they are forever welcome to play with it!!

3) We left Jasper and headed south along highway 93, we figured it couldn't be worse than highway 16 and we were in no rush. So it was a lot of meandering and moseying along the highway with frequent stops.  Our first stop was at Athabasca Falls.  I am a sucker for Waterfalls, like of my top three natural things, waterfalls are probably number 2, the ocean is number one and mountains are number 3.  Athabasca falls was spectacular, it did not disappoint.  I love the blues and they ice formations, and Leigham was enthralled, he even had to make a short little instagram video about it!! lol

4) our next stop was Sunwapta Falls, just 24 km south of Athabasca Falls.  I had initially thought this would be a 2.6 km hike but it turned out to be much closer.  We took Theo in the sled and we all walked to see the falls.  It's a super easy trip and no one froze!!

5) Glacier!! All things water seem to enthrall me, maybe it's because I am a water sign (Go Pisces) or maybe it's something else, I don't know, but all things water just capture my attention and really humble me.  I was like a kid in a Candy store making my husband stop so I could get some pictures of the Glacier, and had I not had my two year old with me and had it been just a little warmer I would have walked much closer to the Glacier. So next time..... oh yeah I am going as close as I can.  I just think it's amazing that this frozen body of water is still here (thank goodness) and that it has been here for thousands and millions of years.  Wow is the only way I can describe how I feel about this natural phenomena.

Added bonus, we left Jasper National park and took Highway 11 home so we drove by Abraham Lake.  I love this place and next time I come out here in the winter I will have ice cleats so I can go down on the lake to take pictures of the bubbles in the ice!! There were so many people down there doing that but I didn't have the gear, so next time I am doing it! Abraham lake is beautiful, it can be super windy too, but it is well worth the short trek out of the park to see!! Welcome to Back Country!!

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Classroom Life Skills

When I am working with my kids I am always trying to ensure that their needs are put first.  The skills and learning my students need are very different to the other students in my class but also different from the general population.  So even if I am teaching a lesson on hygiene for a Job Interview, I am teaching a separate lesson to each student because they are all at different levels.

This past week we've been working with hygiene skills.  Now if you ever spend any time around children and teenagers you will know that hygiene skills are not second nature, in fact for some they plain just don't know about them.  I've worked with students who wouldn't know what deodorant was if it came up and bit them, I've also worked with students who think Axe spray will mask all bad smells. These are two sides of the same coin, they are terribly assaulting to anyone around them.  And this has happened in every school, in every grade and every program I have worked in. If students aren't taught hygiene skills they just don't know.

So we started our lessons talking about the big and important Job Interview.  We discussed the importance of a first impression and how even though we shouldn't judge people by their appearance in a job interview this is common place.  So in order for a person to get a good job, they must demonstrate that they are fluent in hygiene skills.

It's been some fun lessons.  I work with some students that really benefit from having things in a check list with pictures so we've been doing picture checklists.  It's so fun to see their thinking and processing skills as well.  Sometimes I am dying with laughter because they come up with the craziest things.

We brainstormed all our areas of hygiene, from bathing regularly to changing socks regularly.  One student researched pedicures, another put together information of scent awareness.  We discussed the difference between deodorant and antiperspirant.  I have one student writing a comic strip on good hygiene and showering.

Teaching Life Skills is one of my favourite parts of the job!!

Monday, 16 January 2017

Lessons for The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari

I've been reading this book for a year.  It's not a bad book, but I just kept putting it down and reading other things, but I made it my resolution to read this book this month, or to finish it.  This is also a book I treat like my University books, making notes as I read so that I can remember what I've read.

So here are my top ten take aways from this book.

10) Meditation or focused reflection each day is going to help you create the vision that you want for you life.  By continually thinking on this vision each day it will start to come into reality.

      I've started meditating before bed each night, I find it's a very relaxing activity and helps me to sleep better. I have crazy dreams now, but I'm not bothered by them. I would like to start doing this in the morning but it means getting up earlier, so that will be a work in progress for sure.

9) Live in the Now, but don't stop dreaming, purposeful dreams that will help you create the life you were meant to live.

   I've been reading a lot of books about living in the NOW. And it makes sense, you can't change the past that has already happened and even if you don't like it, you can't change it you can only learn and grow from it.  And the future, it's going to happen all you can do is live in the present moment and make it the best one it can be.

8) Give yourself to others, do things for others to help them accomplish their goals, this will increase the quality of your life.

   I use to want to be famous, a famous actress or model or author even, I thought that would give my life purpose and I'd leave this world known by millions.  Since I've grown and matured I've come to realize I don't want the famous life of celebrity, I think there may be more pains then gains in that life style.  But I do want to make a difference in this world, some how I want to be connected to something that made the world a better place, even if that is only for the people in my small city or the people in my social circle.  But in some way I want to do things for others so that I make their life better.

7) Be Time Consciences, 80 percent of what you accomplish is done with 20 percent of your actions. Say no when you need to, do not be at everyone's beck and call. Time is truly the only non-renewable resource.

   This was something I had to pause on, I mean what am I doing 80 percent of the time that is accomplishing nothing, (cough cough social media) and how can I better leverage my time to be more effective. I also liked the idea of saying no, but in the way that you can turn off your phone, and not answer just because it rings. I liked the idea of giving your full attention to your priorities and getting to everything else when you have time to address it.

6)Will Power inspires you to do what is right in any given moment.  You can build your will power by doing little things, things you don't like to do, keeping silent except to answer direct questions for an extended period of time.  Small victories lead to bigger victories it is up to you to create those victories.

   This makes sense, there is no point in trying to do the big thing if you can't control the little things.  For me it's living a healthy lifestyle and eating better.  Well this will never come to fruition unless I can get control over my emotional and boredom snacking. So I've been working very hard to find my triggers and retrain myself with those triggers. Instead of eating when I am upset, I write (killing two birds with one stone here) I focus my attention on something else so that I don't just dig into the chips.

5) Face your Fears to help you live a fearless life  Be the Leader of your own life. 

  There are so many things I could be afraid of, public speaking, rejection of my writing, mocking of my insecurities, all of these things cause me fear, but if I try to do them I may find success and the more I do them the more comfortable I will be.

4) Create a dream book that has four sections. One section for physical health, one section for financial goals, one section for personal empowerment, and one section for spiritual goals.  

   I am intrigued by this one, I think this is something I am going to try, and really write out my vision for each goal on those pages and review them until they become reality.  I believe in writing my goals down, I believe in vision boards, and I think this is just another step in that direction. I even have a book that has "my favourite dream is you" on the cover.  Could that be any more perfect??

3) A habit is formed after doing it for 21 days straight

   I am totally on board with this one.  And I work hard to install new habits in my life that are beneficial, meditating at night, writing in my bullet journal, all of these things will form a habit if done consistently.  I know it's true, I've been tracking my food for 50 days now and now it's just part of what I do at a meal I don't even really think about it.

2) Enthusiasm is the key for success, happiness will com from steadily working towards achieving your goals and moving in the direction of your life's purpose.

   This makes all kinds of sense in that "OmG I just got hit in the face with a door I saw coming" kind of way.  Obviously if you are enthusiastic about something you are putting a lot of energy into that item to make it what you want it to be.  And when you are working enthusiastically towards that goal and as you are getting closer and closer your feel accomplished and feeling like you have done something always brings about happiness (unless it was something mean that you did intentionally or on accident, but then just apologize and move on).

1) Find what you Truly Love to do and Direct all your energy towards doing it.

   And this is a total, "well no shit" but the hard part on this is finding what you truly love.  That is the greatest challenge, but once you find that thing that you love you should never back away from it, you should pour your whole self into what you love and own the shit out of it.  It doesn't matter if this is teaching, direct sales, car sales or waitressing.  If you love what you do and you feel happy and accomplished then you do it, because that is what matters, being happy is what matters.

Have you read any great personal development books? What books are they?

Friday, 13 January 2017

Friday Five: National Parks I'll visit this year!

This year is Canada's 150th Birthday! So Parks Canada is allowing free access into all the National Parks.  This is a great time for you to explore the parks in your area and maybe find that one place you and your family really want to go to again and again! So here are five of the parks I am planning to visit this year!
Banff National Park: This is a quick journey from my house in relation to National Parks.  It's probably the second closest at a short 2 and half hour drive.  I always go visit the townsite in Banff but this year I'd like to go visit some of the other areas and maybe do some of the easier hikes with the boys.

 Elk Island National Park: I have never been to this one, but I have passed it countless times when I used to drive to Edmonton.  It has or is close to a Ukrainian Village that I think would be really cool to take the kids too, this is definitely one of my summer destinations.

Jasper National Park: This one is a bit of drive, 4 and half hours from my place, but it is so pretty and right in the mountains.  It reminds me of Lake Tahoe so I am very excited to take my kids to visit this place. This is actually our first visit this year because to see it in the winter is just so pretty!!

 Pacific Rim National Park: I love the ocean so being able to go to a National Park on the ocean would be such a fun experience.  None of my family has ever been so this will definitely be a family trip, and maybe I can line it up before or just after the Seawheeze, I'm still hoping I will get a bib!!
 Prince Albert National Park: I have not been here since I was a teenager but it was very pretty and I think it would be fun to go back.  We go to the Prince Albert Area enough to visit so it wouldn't be hard to jaunt up there for a day while we were in the area visiting! I know there is so much to do and we won't fit it in in one day but that's the beauty of these passes they are good all year, we can make multiple visits if we'd like!

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Wednesday Whys!!

Whenever you change something in your life the most frequent question you will receive is why?  Why are you selling Arbonne? Why did you leave teaching? Why are you doing that diet? Why aren't you friends anymore?

So here are some of my Whys?

Why have I decided to sell Arbonne?
I have been buying Arbonne for years and I love the skin care and nutrition lines, and no other products have ever come close to comparison for me.  My friend Stacey had been persistently asking me to join for years, but I kept turning her down.  Sometimes I was selling Fifth Avenue Collection (which I still love) and sometimes I just didn't want to do the direct selling.  Direct Selling is not my passion, but I do have a passion for the products, they are amazing.  So after the economic downturn of 2014 I jumped in.  I kept thinking if only I had $500-1000 extra each month we'd get out of debt and then we would be able to really start planning for our future.  So now I am selling Arbonne, I am not always the most active but it has definitely helped us out and it has definitely been significant enough to always provide what I have needed it to provide.

Why did you leave teaching?
I had left teaching five years ago and now I am back.  The main reason I left was I wasn't finding a position that I loved. I was willing to take any position but when you take positions you don't have a passion for it kind of takes the joy out of teaching.  So I went and worked with PCLASS for five years and I loved it.  Then when my current position became available I felt it was a great blend of two things I love. Working with a marginalized population in a teaching environment.  Being able to help make a difference in kids lives, it's something that I have a HUGE passion for.

Why aren't you friends anymore?
If there are people that I was once close with that I am no longer close with it would be a parting of company because of a change in our growth, not because I have any ill will towards them.  I truly believe in the analogy of the train, at birth you board a train and throughout your life many people will come onto your train.  Some will leave after a short time and others will ride the train with you for many years, some into senility.  It's not about why we aren't friends anymore it's about what lesson were they here to teach me about!!!

What are some Whys you are constantly asked?

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Antsy to get back to working out

It's so hard being in recovery, and it's not even that my recovery is going bad. In fact I would say it is going fabulously.  I am pretty much doing everything I used to be doing save for one thing.  Working out aerobically (Sad face).

I love being able to work out, going to classes, visiting with people and feeling the sweat pouring down my back.  It's a glorious feeling and it helps me feel so alive.  And now I am benched.  All I can do is watch everyone else have fun in workout class and I am sitting on the sidelines moping.

Well no more!!!

 I am determined that I will continue to workout and if nothing else my stamina for workouts will be the same or greater than it was before my surgery.  I have a stationary bike that I am using at least 4 days a week and I have light weights I can use to continue to tone and tighten this glorious body that God Gave me!!

My workout regime is going to go like this.  Monday, Wednesday, Friday and a weekend day I will bike for an episode of Gilmore Girls on Netflix, that means that is 45 minutes of vigorous biking.  I am also going to dedicate 30 minutes every day to a gentle stretching yoga routine. I have a few bedtime routines that I actually really enjoy doing so just to print them out and get back into gear with them.  Tuesday and Thursday I am going to get up and do some form of exercise with weights and get on the ball, I am also going to do a 30 minute walk after school if the weather is cooperative.  Sorry, not sorry, I am not walking outside when it is colder than -15.

I can essentially use any five pound weights and do any exercise that does not require me to jump or bounce.  The giggling of the breasts is really very painful, but anything else and I am good to go.

So here is to working out my lower body, abs and arms.  We will let the chest rest for a bit!!

Monday, 9 January 2017

Arbonne Goal Achievement

It's one thing to have a goal in your head of what you want but you have to be able to work towards that goal.  So I have a goal for my Arbonne aspect of my life.  I want to be able to hit my District Manager promotion in the next month.  But how does that goal get broken down.
Well the first thing is knowing what it takes to receive the District Manager Promotion.  It's not just something they just hand out, it is something you need to work towards.  In order to become a District Manager you need to do 7500 QV (volume of sales) over 3 months with 2500 in your last month or 6000 QV over one or two months. Then you need to maintain 2500 QV in sales each month to maintain your title as a District Manager.  
The reason I want to become a District Manager is for the override payment.  So I would make my regular commission but I would also make an 8% override which would allow me make more money on my sales, seems like a no brainer right.  I've hit District Manager before and I had it for 6 months but then I just let things slide and I didn't work my business.
So I have now set out some goals for me in my Arbonne Business.  Obviously, I want to hit 6000 QV this month so I am a District Manager for next month.  I have also set out to finding two Business Builders this month, those would be people who could also use this opportunity to help them reach their goals.  I'd also like to sign up or resign up 4 new Preferred Clients as my Preferred Client list has dropped since I have lapsed in my business.  

I will also be tracking what I do for QV in each week so I know how much more I need to work each week in order to hit my promotion.  I have also written down the number of Learn and Burns I need to do each week so I can keep my mind in my business!

On the otherside of this whiteboard I've broken down how I am going to do this.  It will happen if I have 10 parties (presentations/ appointments) this month and of those 10 I should be doing four Business Builder launches.  Where I help my business builders have their first two presentations. I'd personally like to do 4000 QV with each of my business builders doing 1000 QV.  By doing this each of my Business Builders will enter into District Qualifications.

As I book the presentations I am writing them up on the board.  I am sending out Discover Arbonne Videos to people I think would be amazing at this and who I'd like to link arms with to go out and take over the world!!

This is going to be a busy month, but it will be so worth it to start getting my family to living in financial freedom.  It will allow my husband and I to pursue our dreams for what we really want to do. I don't know what he really wants to do, but he's not completely happy with what he does and I want to go back to school to get my Masters Degree.  

So we will work hard to make this happen!!