A gentleman acquaintance asked me a couple of years ago - So what do you do Sophia? I replied with - well, not much, I'm just staying home with the kids now. Kindly, he responded that that is far beyond 'not much.' He at least regarded my work AS work and more then that - some of the most important work in the world.
That was nice to hear but sadly, not everyone seems to regard it in this way. And I understand the situation is quite complex. With today's cost of living, I can imagine what people must think when they hear about a mom that chooses to stay home to raise the children. It sounds like a luxury - to not have to rely on that second income to be able to pay the bills etc.
However, our life is far from luxurious and I know of plenty of SAHMs that have made the sacrifice of the second income for the sake of choosing to be present in the upbringing of the children - especially in the early years.
Most people - even those without children, can see and understand very well, the dedication, strength and patience it takes to do the work of a SAHM yet it seems our society doesn't place much VALUE on this work. Rather, instead, the pressure is placed on the woman to go back to work in order to produce value in THAT way.
Whilst my heart goes out to all the working mamas out there, my words today are for those mums that choose to stay home. I speak for them because, in spite of the financial burdens and risks that are taken in order to pursue this path, in addition to essentially taking on the HARDEST job on the planet (generally speaking), not to mention feeling like the odd one out because 'going back to work' is the norm these days - they choose to do this work anyway!
And without much social support (I mean thank you to the Facebook groups out there) but in general, SAHMs are in a league of their own, which is why I feel compelled to offer support specifically to these women. They carry the weight of the world of their shoulders. They have chosen to take direct ownership in the raising and educating of their offspring. To instill principals and values in them that matter most to their families, again, at the risk of the above. But in the end, this is not a risk.. they are in fact making INVESTMENTS. They are choosing to invest in the future of their children by being present in their lives especially in those crucial early years.
The difficulty in this work is real though and requires support. I've had my own struggles and have managed to find ways to cope with this life and in fact am learning to thrive. There are many elements to this however, especially when you want to achieve a Holistic lifestyle, for yourself and your family. I would be pleased and honoured to join you in your journey as a remarkable SAHM that has made an extraordinary decision. It is tough, yes. The struggle is real and intense, there's no doubt about it. But the suffering does not have to happen alone. Sometimes it's about gaining some practical, implementable tips. Sometimes it's just about a little mindset shift. Sometimes, it's simply about accepting the utter shitty-ness of the situation but understanding that it WILL come to an end. But again, it's also about letting someone hold your hand, making space for you to have a good cry and then having a good exhale so you can carry on to make the next meal plan, cleaning rota and hey - maybe even booking a little spa treatment!?!
SAHMs RULE! :)
It’s March all of a sudden!! And I’m feeling so lucky! I would like to spread some Good Luck too. This month I would like to offer the opportunity for folks to enter in a draw to win a completely FREE ONE MONTH Coaching Program with me!
Here are the Rules to enter the Draw:
1. You must message me to schedule and complete a HALF-HOUR, NO OBLIGATION, NO EXPECTATION phone call with me to discuss the following:
2. You must be ready to COMMIT. This is a four week program for you to engage in with all the love and motivation and excitement you have for yourself. If you’re wanting to make a change in your life for the better but need guidance to get clear on your goals and how to achieve them then I want to work with you!!
3. Our appointments are scheduled for Saturdays. Make sure you can be available for an hour each Saturday for the first four consecutive weeks in April.
☆ If this interests you then please message me for more details and to schedule that 30min consultation!
☆ Consultation calls will take place Saturdays during the month of March. Draw will take place and be announced on Monday March 28th.
Your Four Week program will then commence on April 2nd. Looking forward!😃🍀
Jennifer Aniston said something very wise a couple years ago. I saw her on a Youtube clip where she appeared on Jimmy Kimmel shortly after she joined Instagram and nearly broke the Internet after accumulating over one million followers in just over 5 hours.
Jimmy asked her, ‘So what made you finally join Instagram?’ She answered, ‘well you know, what you resist persists..’ And that has stuck deep in my mind since then. Actually, I just did a quick little Google search and it seems Carl Jung was the one that said it first. But still, very wise of her to quote Jung!
So, my point here is: What you resist persists. And it’s so true, isn’t it?! How often a new fashion trend comes up and we scoff and roll our eyes about it and the next thing we know we’re wearing scrunchies and parachute pants. Or the latest pop tune hits the mainstream and we gag but then we find ourselves belting out Taylor, Gaga and Harry.
Same goes with all these weird new age practices. Affirmations are silly, daily gratitude rituals are useless and mindfulness is just a bunch of mumbo jumbo. Right?!
Well, perhaps at some point, I must admit, I had been rolling my eyes at all these alternative, esoteric type activities as well. In honesty, I just didn’t get the whole idea of repeating these airy fairy type statements over and over again when my reality seemed to be the complete opposite. I got the idea of acknowledging my gratitude towards the blessings in my life but didn’t consider there to be a striking impact on anything. As for mindfulness, or meditation, I really just have found it to be too hard and hence threw my hands up to it.
What do all these things have in common? Self-care. They all come under the self-care umbrella (perhaps even the pop music and parachute pants… in a way..) There’s another term I would cringe at. Self-care. I myself, like many others it seems, took that term in a selfish way. Not understanding it properly, I thought it was just about spa days and manicures. Now with more knowledge and understanding, I get it. It is so much more than that and it is truly necessary in the world of Holistic Health.
In reality, it is the act of engaging in activities to gain or maintain an optimal level of overall health, which means you’re looking at more than just looking after your physical body. There are the emotional, mental, social, environmental, financial, professional and yes, physical sides to it too. Together, all these things make up the pieces of the whole. And they must all be tended to consistently.
This week in my Weekly Checkin talk on Facebook, I’ll be focusing on selfcare and what it means. Specifically, I'll talk about:
☆ Defining Self-care
☆ The 8 Main Areas
☆ 7 practical tips to start implementing today
☆ Busting meditation myths
☆ My personal Self-care resources
This talk will leave you inspired and motivated to get cracking at your own personal self-care commitment.
Hope to see you there this Thursday at 3pm EST.
I’ve been awkwardly babbling about these two ladies for months now. Referring to them as my ‘homesteading ladies’ (like they’re MY people. weirdo). I could drop something about them in literally any conversation I partake in these days. It’s strange and embarrassing. So maybe once I get all this off my chest I’ll finally stop. Or not. Who knows, either way, I want to give the world a piece of my mind about Shaye Elliott and Angela Reed.
I think it was about two years ago, I was in my rented Toronto basement apartment home. It was a lazy afternoon with my girls - two and four at the time. We might've been folding laundry or at least surrounded by it.
I wanted some TV on but not a mindless show or any kind of nonsense. I wanted the audio visual sensation but something useful. I had root cellaring on my mind. I wanted (still want) to get the design right and understand how this storage space works most effectively. So I suppose I typed in ‘root cellar’ on YouTube and up popped The Elliott Homestead Channel.
Boom. Life changed forever.
Can’t remember if I went down the rabbit hole right that afternoon or if it was days or weeks later. Either way, I started watching her kitchen tour, home tour, garden tour, thrifting adventures, garden planning, homeschooling etc etc etc. oh! And the essential makeup applying routine even as a homesteader! I was enraptured (pretty deep… I mean that kitchen wallpaper! Wallpaper must be in my life now) but I wasn’t necessarily spellbound just yet.
You know how these things go…full on for a moment, then quiet and then back again. And then she came back full force. Last year, around April 2021 when we finally moved to OUR homestead full time. I was getting into our garden and I started BINGEING. I mean, falling asleep to her picturesque montages of the spring garden, summer garden etc. I was creating my dream garden and I had an example to follow. I tried searching other channels, just to not feel like a weird stalker, and get other ideas, but I don’t know. There’s just something about this one. The beautiful woven dance of flowers, food, stunningly simple home, their modesty yet intense passion for life, it’s beauty and often unnoticable charms. They put their cameras right on the good stuff! And I know there are so many talented people that do this. The thing that makes me happy and obsessed with this channel is its popularity too I guess. It’s that I’m not the only one that is fascinated by all this and that fascinates me too. These people are on to something. Somehow glamourising a seemingly unglamourous life.
Saying that - they are humble as heck and solid to the earth. I mean, intensely solid. Her talk of hard work and her addiction to it is probably perplexing for many but it’s invigorating for me. In a world of so much monotony, duplication, automation, addiction to ease and comfort, it was literally electrifying to hear someone else - that is popular(!) and inspiring and doing really cool stuff, talk about hard work like it’s the sexiest thing ever. Ahh I can breathe! Yes!! Let’s get our hands dirty, let’s sweat and yes even toil for a bit as we create our masterpieces. Then we sit back and admire our creations, in the garden, the kitchen and the rest of the home.
Which brings me to the Homemaker Chic podcast. This is not like grandma’s copy of Home and Garden magazine, which I know has a very updated, modern feel to it now. The Instagram accounts are definitely drool worthy. But it’s this personalized touch of Shaye (that’s her name by the way) and Angela (her co-host), and bestfriend who is coincidentally another incredible successful Youtuber, blogger, homesteader, magic lady extraordinaire. I adore Angela. Her humour, her outlook on life and centered rationale. I vibe with her so much. In fact, character wise I probably match Angela more but as they say.. Opposites attract and Shaye’s super punchy (albeit delightful) attitude and intense zest has a hold on me. It was a real eye opener, listening to her unapologetic viewpoints on the podcast compared to her very docile, dreamy Youtube videos. I loved to learn this side of her.
Well so, I binged the first few seasons all summer (while working in the garden of course). The whole of the first season is probably my favourite. So many of their views, approaches, assertions, just got me, down in the gut. And I don’t feel like they speak as if EVERYONE should live like this and do what they do etc. They just love their lives so much and are so unwaveringly clear on what their missions are and they are embodying those missions to the absolute max. Profound inspirations in my opinion.
Now. What exactly IS their mission? To revive the ever so drab and dreary life of the Homemaker. In their words - To rescue the Art of Homemaking.
And what an Art it is. I had no idea it was an Art. I’ve always thought of it as a consequence, no, a byproduct of just simply living in a home. You know, like you have to fill up the home with furniture, sure, decorate it (and I’ve always been excited about that part), and then maintain it. Clean it of course, keep it functional etc.. but to Make a Home.. I didn’t realize that was a real thing and that THAT is the primary thing I’d been doing for a few years by then. I suddenly had VALIDATION. This is my main vocation. I am managing the space where my family lives and by God’s grace - actually thrives! I can do this people. I want to do it! This is my life’s passion. I make the food, the home, the garden, the whole package. I host the parties, I hold the space, create the atmosphere, the environment. This is my JOB.
Now wait. Why do I suddenly have this validation? Cause two random ladies make some fancy Youtube videos and giggle over starching their tablecloths?? (Which by the way - I do draw the line there). It’s validated because all of this is in complete connection with living a Holistic lifestyle. Cooking food from scratch, that you grew in your garden, where you also harvest your medicines, and decorate your home with the flowers that you also grew, so you can bring the nature that you’re surrounded by all day into your home to continue to admire it, respect it, marvel at it and stay connected with it. You place the flowers in thrifted vases which saves the earth from producing more needless stuff, in addition to everything else that’s been thrifted. As an Intentional Homemaker, you are aware and concerned of the products and merchandise that comes into your home. And if you happen to be a MOTHER as well - your children are watching all this every. Single. Day. Absorbing it, learning how to replicate it. To learn respect and reverence for all the details that make a house, a home.
My own mother showed me an example of this. Obviously, not to the fine detail of professional Youtubers but the glimpse was there. It was clouded though by modern culture and the lack of appreciation, heck the complete lack of acknowledgement of such a vocation.
Sure sure, there’s Martha and a few other niche circles. But what’s encouraging about this movement (I’ll call it a movement now), is that it combines everything - home, food, garden, fashion, children, yes animal rearing too, which is not yet my realm but eventually.
The world is shifting now. And it’s not about politics or climate change or pandemics or anything at all on that scale. It all comes down to what you or I or anyone else do as an individual. It starts with looking after our own minds, bodies and souls, and those of our families too. And the best way to do that - is not just to make the time for it but the space too. Dare to dream up and cultivate the space that will nourish you wholly. No matter how large, or small or even tiny your space is. We must make it ours. Real, true and authentic, perhaps even Chic :)
As a Health Coach who focuses on helping people elevate their home COOKING... I knew I would have to start sharing some of my own recipes. The thing is, is that I don't really have any recipes to share. That's not because I don't cook my meals. I can say that I've been a devoted home cook since about the age of 10. But even from that early age, I can remember paging through countless cookbooks, becoming hungrily inspired. Then, instead of going line by line through the recipe, I'd gather up the main ingredients and go to town on the proportions and details. The jist of the recipe was more or less followed but I don't think I've ever really followed specific measurements except for baking but even then, I shake things up a bit.
I won't say that my style of cooking is always the best way to go. There are mistakes that can be made and if you're feeding a crew of people, you may not want to be so bold and just cook things off the cuff like that all the time. HOWEVER, I see plenty of reasons as to why more people should at least consider being a bit more liberal in the kitchen. Or the way I see it - more intuitive in the kitchen. That's what I realized a little while ago - that's what I do! Intuitive Cooking! I cook with my intuition. When I realized that that's what I do I wanted to start writing about it and how I do it etc. But then I thought - one of my favourite sayings - don't reinvent the wheel! So I scoured the Internet trying to find some clear, concise information on this method. Surprisingly, there's barely any info on this method! However, what I did find, I will be sharing in my Live Facebook event this Thursday for my weekly Checkin. That's right, the topic is Intuitive Cooking and I'll be diving right into it. Why just give a person the fish, when you can teach them how to fish instead?! I'll be sharing information, steps and tips on how to approach Intuitive Cooking rather then bombarding you with finite, rigid recipes.
To end off, here are some reasons on why you should embrace intuitive cooking if you don't already:
If all this appeals to you then join my Facebook group Harvest the Day today, so you can make it for the free event, this Thursday January 27th at 3pm EST.
See you there!
"It's not about time, it's about choices.
How are you spending your choices?"
- Beverley Adams
One of the fundamental aspects of my program is focus on Time Management. Most of us feel too strongly the haze and daze of daily life. One of the main excuses we put out there that keep us from focusing on our health and wellness is that we don’t have the TIME!
That’s why I put it as one of the first, two MAIN aspects to focus on before we proceed with any of the other topics I touch on in my holistic health coaching practice. Because once you get a good handle on your TIME then you can focus on home cooking (which will most likely lead to weight loss, increased energy, better mood etc), selfcare, family life, sorting out your home environment etc.
Yes, we are all busy. Daily life is overwhelming - especially if you have children. However, as you may or may not be aware, there is a monstrosity of tools and resources to help us deal with our time management and to get a good grasp at it.
Next week in my weekly Facebook Live Checkin event I will be discussing the following:
Well, we're a few days into the new year and I imagine some focused 'resolutionists' out there are out on their missions - getting fit, going to the gym and starting diets. And if you are one of them and are out there lovingly motivated, inspired and with a sustainable game plan then I applaud you and cheer you on!!
However! IF - you're stepping into your 'new year, new me' approach with nothing more then fleeting statements such as: 'I'm gonna work out every morning for an hour from now on' and 'I'm not eating carbs anymore' because your GOAL is to lose weight, then I sincerely question and wonder about your approach. You very well might succeed but the chances are slim. The problem is, is that weight loss is not a goal to pursue - it is a consequence of other, more meaningful goals that you have pursued. And these, more appropriate goals are the ones that I am here to help you formulate. With specific action steps, that include timelines and milestones. But don't worry - it's not just charts and targets and super dry disciplined kind of stuff. We also aim to make it fun and playful. Perhaps, sweating it out in a packed gym is not actually the way you want to spend your time. Maybe - tuning into an online, streamed workout class with AMAZING music, joined virtually by other friends that you know is more appealing and doable! Or you discover that an hour long session every morning is not even effective and a solid 15min workout is enough!
There's also the food prep game plan and self care strategy that should ideally go along with any kind of self-improvement undertaking. If you really want to get serious about weight loss - then FORGET about weight loss! Focus on the ACTION steps that will get you there. And if your lost or overwhelmed with ideas - then call me!! And/or join my private Facebook group Harvest The Day!
Other welcomed side effects, (besides losing weight!) of working in this way with me are the following:
- better sleep
- less stress
- more energy
- less anxiety
- better relationships
- inner peace
- and so much more!
Then please join my private Facebook group Harvest The Day! This is a place where I don't want to overwhelm you with a ton of information. It's not full of a ton of people that you don't know. I want it to be a place where we check in on each other and support each other. I want it to be intimate enough where we can comfortably unload some of our pesky problems.. 'my kids are driving me crazy!!' 'I have no idea what to cook anymore!' 'I need more selfcare time but I have no idea how to achieve that!?!?' I'll also toss in
There will also be:
- Some tidbits here and there that resonate with me personally in regards to health and wellness (Mediterranean diet, Blue Zone diet, Konmari method, Personal Mission Statements, whole family rhythms etc.)
- Some fun quizzes to get a realistic gauge of how we're doing in different areas of our lives
- Inspirational quotes
- Thursday afternoon at 3pm LIVE sessions on Facebook, to check in with ongoing goals, progress, challenges and setbacks
In essence, it's a place to get some of that accountability that I offer through my Health Coaching services. Join and see if you like it. If you don't like it or you feel like it's not serving you then by all means - please Unjoin! My personal goal and mission in life is HELP PEOPLE BECOME THEIR BEST SELVES! That does not happen when your physical, mental, soulful and digital self is cluttered with a bunch of meaningless things that do not serve you. I'm here to insist that you CLEAR THE CLUTTER and I'm totally okay with the fact that I might be considered clutter to you! I know there are others that I am here to serve and support. We can all be honest and compassionate at the same time. In the meantime, I look forward to seeing you on Thursdays if this sounds appealing to you!
All the best :)
"A goal without a plan is just a wish"
- Antoine de Saint-Exupery (author of Le Petit Prince)
What's your New Year's resolution creation strategy? Do you consistently write out specific goals on paper or are they typically just some random fleeting thoughts in your head? Do you consider your resolutions through out the whole year or is the idea just a memory by February? Would you like this year to be the year you intentionally create some exciting goals for yourself and then actually work at achieving them?
Well! You've come to the right place because:
This Thursday at 3pm EST, I'll be holding a New Year's Resolution Creation session in my private Facebook group, Harvest the Day. Please join the group so you can make it!
During this half hour session I'll guide your through a resolution creation process. The main points we will cover during our time together include:
~ A reflection on 2021
~ A visualization of who you will be by the end of 2022
~ An action plan on how to become that person
I look forward to seeing you there on Thursday!
I provide one-to-one accountability support to help guide you through a completely personalized, 100% unique program based solely on YOU and YOUR needs.
How? We start off by co-designing your life and short-term goals together. Then, we agree on the baby steps you can take to help you reach your ultimate desires, day by day.
When and Where? We meet up via phone call, weekly or biweekly, depending on the program you wish to pursue. We catch up, chit chat, laugh and also get down to the nitty gritty. What’s working for you? What’s not? Why are things so challenging? Why can’t you move through these blocks? What are some things you can try to help you stay focused and stop wavering from your goals? This is the dialogue that will happen during our calls.
What are the topics? Although each program is completely customized, my work tends to focus on a few common themes: