I Love You Mom


I love you mommomm1mom


I Love You Mom

I sure have some great times with you Mom. Nothing beats a good yardsale adventure with you.

I have the best mom in the world. Yep, sorry about that the rest of you guys.

She can make me laugh like no one else can. When you are in her company you know that you are loved.


I also can’t forget the best mother-in law in the world!  I adore this picture of her holding one of her babies.

I would like to dedicate this video to the two magnificent mom’s in my life:








Living healthy and looking at the whole picture is more than just exercise and eating right. Those two are certainly key, but there are other areas to consider. We want a healthy physical life but also emotional, mental, and spiritual.  Sleep is a major contributor to our feeling great or feeling crummy. Our bodies repair system kicks in during sleep. Basic information about sleep can be found on the websites I have below. We have REM sleep, where dreams occur and Non-REM sleep, where body repair occurs. We need both. Check out the sites below:

This website has tons of information on sleep.

This website has an interesting test you can take to see if you may have a sleep disorder.

At the same time, over 100,000 billion of cells restore themselves in their 7-year cycle. Growth hormones are released, cells are actively replaced and muscular tissue is built up through protein synthesis. Mineral losses are replenished. Wounds heal. Corticosteroid hormones build up our resistance to infections and tiredness. We become immune again to all kinds of diseases. White corpuscles surround and destroy bacteria. In the lymph glands and the spleen, they remove bacteria from the blood. 

During the deep stages of NREM sleep, the body repairs and regenerates tissues, builds bone and muscle, and appears to strengthen the immune system. As you get older, you sleep more lightly and get less deep sleep. Aging is also associated with shorter time spans of sleep, although studies show the amount of sleep needed doesn’t appear to diminish with age.

It is worth exploring ways to improve your sleep!





I am not sure why it has taken me so long to post about yoga.  It’s a love of mine. The incredible sense of wellbeing after I attend a yoga class is almost addictive. Let me mention some of the benefits:

1. Deliberate breathing to match movement enhances the sense of wellbeing.

2. Yoga is strength training. Yes, it strains the muscles. I used to think of yoga as poses that looked like a human pretzel.  It is that for some, but there is much more to it.

3. Part of yoga practice includes balance. With patience in yourself and practice, the balance comes.  Balance manifests itself in many things in life. My husband marvels at my balance as I maneuver my bike around tricky areas where he has to get off of his bike.

4. I love the stretching portion of yoga. It doesn’t matter how flexible or not you are. Practice shows improvement.  In turn, this helps guard against injury.

5. Perhaps my favorite part of yoga is practicing calming my mind…a difficult task in this whirlwind life. Also, you can have a deeper sleep because of the relaxation that accompanies yoga practice. Yes!

Find a class! It is difficult at first, so give it time and I think you will end up loving it too!

Children Bedtime Rituals

Children bedtime rituals

Children Bedtime Rituals

Children bedtime rituals

You’ve heard it time and again, but it’s true…!  The children don’t stay little long and before you know it, they’ve flown the coup.  Embrace the time you have with your little ones.  That’s easy to say and much harder to do as you deal with 2 and 3 year old antics. Yet, continue to tell yourself, it IS worth it. Consider some bedtime rituals. My older children have told me they especially loved the nights after the lights were out, when I would go in, lie on their bed and just talk with them.  Actually, I mostly listened and let them pour out their little hearts to me.  There is something about that time of night, lights out, alone with mom that really gets them talking. I found that the children wanted this ritual even as they got older. They really enjoyed when I would take turns asking each of them (if more than one child was in the room) the same question such as “What was the funniest thing that happened to you today?”  “What would you love to have for dinner if you could have anything?” “Do you know my mom and dad’s name?” “Tell me the name of two continents.” “Would you rather me scratch your back, play with your hair, or rub your feet?” But mostly they just wanted to talk about their day.

First Attempt at Poetry


PoemHmmm, so I’ve had a few requests for more of my writing attempts…And I mean ATTEMPTS!! So, I guess I will throw another piece out there. This poem was written in the winter when I was longing for heat.


Laying still and warm

Beneath scorching suns harm.

My mind is sagging,

Senses drift languidly.

Pictures swim fluidly

On my mind’s stage,

Images dash away

With stark screeches of play.

Roughness beneath me warm

And hard felt, then forgotten.

Consciousness drifts among

Clouds in azure sky.

Pool water lapping near,

Shimmering diamonds

The sparkling scatters with

Plunging bodies.

Swirling around me

Chirping voices, life, buzzing

Heat radiates up

Lulling me further.

Images and sound knock about

Shooting crazy half dreams

Through me,

Swimming and colliding.

Children squeal

I hear them, but don’t.

My body is heavy, sinking

Concrete digs into me unaware

Captive in sleep

Heat caressing, trapped in,

Water spits cold shock

I leap to awareness.

--Julie Valentine

Be a Label Reader

Be a Label Reader

Be a Label ReaderBe a Label Reader

Recently a friend spoke at a workshop about healthy eating. Wow, what inspiration! This gal reads labels and is very selective about the foods she will buy. I was an unsuspecting buyer, purchasing food products where labels professed being a healthy choice. After hearing my friends lecture I am paying more attention and notice many of the prominent food in the stores are filled with stuff that is anything but natural. I have become leery of ingredients I’ve never heard of, or can’t pronounce. In essence, we should be eating a good deal of our food in its ‘whole’ form for optimum health.

You’ve heard the following list before but it is worth repeating for optimal health. A few of the ‘bad stuff’ ingredients added to packaged food to avoid are:

Trans fat

Patially Hydrogentated oil

Refined grain

High fructose corn syrup


There are a myriad of packaged foods to make life more convenient. The packaging is incredibly appealing. Beware though; you may pay for this convience later in life. Many of the devastating diseases are linked to the ‘bad stuff’ list. Companies pay millions to make their packaged products as appealing as possible. Here is interesting reading on the topic.

One thing I avoid ALWAYS is artificial sweeteners. Here are some reasons why: http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/facts/artificial-sweetners-unhealthy-eco.htm

There is every opinion imaginable when it comes to what foods to eat, plus what you hear is CONSTANTLY changing! If you eat it and you feel great after eating it, that is a pretty good clue it’s worth eating. That is not the perfect indicator, but it usually works for me.



Great Grains!

Great Grains

Great GrainsGreat Grains!

Grains that I have tried and really liked:

  • Spelt               Pricey, but delicious in bread, use in cookies but you need a little more flour than if you use wheat flour. (grind)
  • Quinoa          Considered a perfect food–I put a small amount of quinoa in with rice every time I cook rice.
  • Kamut          Use in coffee cake, muffins or bread. (grind)
  • Oats               The less processed the oats are, the better they are for you (for instance, rolled oats are better than quick).
  • Buckwheat Use in small amounts because of the strong taste. (grind)
  • Wheat          Substitute out some white for wheat flour in most everything you cook.  Use White Wheat, it is more alkaline (which is what you want), Red Wheat is more acidic. (grind)
  • Corn              Try ground corn in corn bread with spelt flour. (grind)
  • Brown Rice Cook a little longer than white rice.
  • Barley           Use whole barley for sprouting.

Add grains in SLOWLY if you are not used to them.  If you don’t, you may end up with a stomach ache.

great grains



EmbarrassedI was incredibly embarrassed the other day. I’m certain my face turned 5 shades of red…As I was signing up the children for Barnes and Nobles’ book club, I could not think of the years of my children’s births!!!!! I was standing there forever trying to figure out the year! The clerk was FLOORED! Brain freezes happen, but did it have to happen with THAT? Finally, very very flustered, I said, “Well, I have 11 kids and there are more important things to remember…” then I booked it out of there….red face and all. Sigh…Please tell me moments like that aren’t mine alone!

My disclaimer is the fact that I am a mother of 11 children. Yes, I birthed them all myself. Hope that will cut me a little slack…

NONCASH Charitable Donations –tax info–

Tax Tips

Tax TipsNONCASH Charitable Donations –tax info–

We live in a “throw away” society. I personally feel satisfaction when I can donate something of value that can be used by someone else. I usually take between a $1000 to $2500 deduction per year for non-cash donations.


When I was in high school, my friend’s grandpa was the manager of the Ogden Deseret Industries. My friends and I were able to get part-time jobs driving trucks and picking up appliances. That job gave me a first-hand witness of the blessing of this organization in providing work to handicapped people.


Remember, the donations need to be to qualified charities and no deduction is allowed for a charitable contribution of clothing or household items unless the clothing or household item is in good used condition or better. The IRS is authorized by regulation to deny a deduction for any contribution of clothing or a household item that has minimal monetary value, such as used socks and undergarments.

 Planning Tip: Most cell phones today can take pictures. Take a picture of all items donated.

Keep the electronic pictures for proof the items were in good or better condition at

the time they were donated.


Recordkeeping Rules for Charitable Contributions

To help substantiate a deduction for the fair market value of used items donated to charity,

make a list of each item donated on a separate sheet of paper along with the following



• Name and address of charity.

• Date items were donated to the charity.

• Description of each item donated.

• Fair market value of each item at the time they were donated (email me and I can send you a guide).

• Date each donated item was originally purchased or acquired.

• Cost or other basis of each item donated.




PS Email me if you would like to get a Guide of the Fair Market Value of Donated Items

Body Language

Body Language

Body LanguageBody language says it all…almost.

Experts say that if you took 100 % of the communication we receive:

7 % of communication is ‘received’ by words

38 % of communication is ‘received’ by sounds

55 % communication is ‘received’ by body language

That is huge!! How are people reading you? It makes me want to stop and consider what body language I am using as I interact with my children,  and for that matter my husband. Could I be giving signals I didn’t intend? To be an engaged parent it takes A LOT of listening.

Do you ever catch yourself doing the blank stare after a 15 minute monologue from one of the children about something they love, which you may not (like Pokémon or superheroes)? I think I will try to do a little more POSITIVE body language these days. Notice those around you. We are all quite masterful at our body language communication.Body Language


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