Posted by Crystal

You’re not going to wanna miss the opportunity to be mentored by this guy. He is truly amazing!!!

Next week is when it all begins. Allow me to introduce to you the Worlds Sexiest 31 year old

my husband :) This video will explain it all, and the details are posted below.

Begining Monday Setpember 12th
Running Monday thru Friday
Time: Each Morning at 9:00 a.m. Pacific / 12:00 noon EST
Dial: 641-715-3842  Pin: 4000#
Cost: FREE!
Access the recording here after the live call has been completed:

If you can’t see the video click HERE

Posted by Crystal

How many of you have wanted to start a blog but don’t know where to begin?

It may seem a little overwhelming at first but trust me, it’s not as hard as it looks. You’ll learn a lot as you go too. I know many of you have something amazing to share with others and I encourage you to put it down in a blog.

Blogging can be a very therapeutic activity. It provides a much needed outlet in our lives as moms, and allows us to express ourselves in many ways.  Each one of us has something different and unique to share, and with the internet being so prevalent these days, what better way to share it than on a blog.

Today I’m going to share with you a few things I’ve learned over the past 2 years to help you get started yourselves.

First all you have to do is choose a platform. There are many out there but the ones I’m most familiar with are and I started out with blogger and recently switched to wordpress. I would recommend blogger because it’s very simple and easier to understand, but I’ve found wordpress to be much more advanced which can be a good thing if you know what you’re doing. I’m glad I started with blogger, but it was such a pain transferring over to wordpress. So if you feel you’re pretty computer savvy then I would definitely suggest going straight to wordpress.

Second, you need to decide on a theme. What are you most interested in? What would you like to share with the world? What are your talents and how can you use them to serve others via blogging? Or you can simply share things you’ve learned in your life through trial and error. That’s kind of been the theme for my blog. There are so many things I’m interested in and I’m just learning and sharing as I go.

Third, find a way to be consistent. You don’t have to spend hours on end blogging, but I’ve found it best to blog regularly. It’s the only way to keep the inspiration flowing, as well as keep people interested. Figure out what works best for you, even if it’s just once a month.

Benefits of blogging:

1. It can save you time. I know what you’re thinking… yah right! Well if you’re blogging about recent happenings in your life and your kids lives then it’s pretty much taking the place of a journaling AND scrap booking. I’ve learned that scrap booking is just a huge waste of time and money, sorry if I’m offending any of you that love to scrap book. This is just my opinion and I’m just thinking in more practical terms. I’ve spent TONZ of time and money in the past on scrap booking and only found it to be overwhelming and I could never seem to get caught up. I keep a family blog as well as this one and I simply print it out every year. It’s so simple to do. I’ll tell you more about that next week since I should be receiving another one of my blog books in the mail soon.

2. It’s a great way to make new friends and connect with other people who may share similar life stories and interests. I make my way around to other blogs about once a week. I’ve made a lot of friends that way and continue to learn from them. Blogging is not all about yourself :) It’s also about expressing interest in others and taking the time to see what they have to offer. It’s also a great way to find inspiration. There have been many times I’ve stumbled upon someone else’s blog and read an article that totally struck a chord and ignited a whole new topic I felt inclined to share on my own blog.

3. It can help you grow and improve. I’ve come so far over the past two years. I’ve become a better writer, a better photographer, videographer, cook, dancer, have become more organized by using the Day Planners I developed, I’ve become more creative, I’ve been better about making regular meals and planning fun activities to do with my kids, and just recently started learning the guitar. It has somehow opened up my mind to new possibilities. By sharing these things with you, it’s provided the much needed motivation to pursue them. I’ve learned that by SHARING what you learn,  it’s more likely to stay ingrained in your memory. Blogging about my goals has also kept me more accountable to follow through with them. Nobody likes to fail in front of others :)

4. It can be a great way to promote your business. I hate saying this because I don’t like coming across like I just want to make money, but it has been extremely beneficial to our business. And just so you know, I wouldn’t share anything on here that I don’t believe in 100%. I’m just keepin it real :) And as far as my new little business venture (Lil’ Star Boutique) goes, the main motivation was to help my mom earn money with her incredible talent. All proceeds go to supporting her way through school.

Well I hope this helps get you started. Feel free to ask me any questions, I will be sure to address them either in a comment or via another blog post.


Posted by Crystal

It was my eighth grade year. My best friend Brenda and I were hanging around her house one quiet afternoon.  Suddenly we had an idea? We were going to find something for me to do in the talent show.  I had no intension of actually trying out.  I couldn’t sing.  I couldn’t dance.  I wasn’t even sure if I HAD a talent.

Brenda joked that I should do something funny.  I thought, okay  what exactly would that be? We began throwing out ridiculous ideas, like making up a dance or busting out a rap song.  The idea was to get up in front of the whole school and make a complete fool of myself.
It started as a joke but I decided I was REALLY going to do it! I would act as a nervous ventriloquist, trying too hard to be funny and being way too obvious with the lip movements. It was BRILLIANT! Brenda had this puppet she got from the local amusement park, a monkey we called JoJo. Since I don’t have an actual photo of the little guy I searched for one similar to it, to add a visual for you all.

As the time for tryouts got closer, the anticipation grew.  I was nervous, I was scared, and I was incredibly excited. The day finally came. I walked into that tryout room only to see 100 other students, waiting to share their REAL talents. The intimidation was immense.  I began shaking, palms sweaty, and quietly walked over to find a seat.

The tryouts began. I listened to some amazing singers. I watched some incredible dancers. Then it was my turn. Was I really going to do this? What are people going to think of me?

I was the new girl in school. At least that’s what it felt like. That’s the way I always felt growing up. We moved about every 6 months.  I was forced to leave my 6th grade class right before the school year ended. Then put into a new school with barely any time to make friends before graduating to the dreaded junior high.  It was awful! I went from being somewhat popular and having friends, to feeling like the biggest nerd on earth. Seventh grade was pure torture. Eighth grade got a little better. I made some friends, climbed out of my shell a bit and now had plans to perform a comedy skit in front of the entire school.

I walked onto the stage in front of all those students.  I got up there, positioned my puppet on my hand, and began my skit.  I started out a little shaky. It worked out in the end since my character was meant to be nervous.  Picture me as Molly Shannon on SNL playing the nerdy catholic girl trying to talk to one of the basketball players at school.

Before I knew it, I had the whole room laughing. They thought I was funny!!! Their laughter gave me confidence. I began to loosen up and finished my skit feeling grateful I went though with it.

The next day people stopped me in the hall to tell me how much they loved my skit.  One of them happened to be my competition.  His name was Matt.  We were both competing for a spot in the comedy segment of the show.  He was really good which made me question my performance.

I couldn’t believe the attention I was getting!!! People were actually calling me by name. I was somebody!!! At that point I pretty much thought I had the talent show in the bag.

A week went by.  I was sitting in my 6th period class day dreaming about my debut in the talent show, when I was interrupted by the loud obnoxious beep from the intercom.

This was it!!! They were about to announce the students selected to be in the show.  My heart was pounding. The anticipation was killing me!

I waited…

Then waited some more…

Then it was over. My name was not called.  I sat there for a minute in shock thinking there must be some mistake.

Then reality set in.

I was heart broken. I wanted to cry. I DID cry. I even asked the judges why not! They all loved me, so I thought. They simply said they only had enough time for one comedy act and they chose to go with Matt.

It took me a while to get over it. I felt like I had finally found something that would make me stand out. I wanted to be noticed. I wanted to be liked. I wanted to be popular.

Life went on and I did get over it. Now I look back at that experience with so much gratitude in my heart. I was proud of myself for taking a risk. Conquering my fear and going for it.  That experience has given me much more than I realized at the time.  Now it means I CAN conquer fear!

I failed. But did I really?  I learned a great lesson.  I proved that fear cannot hold me back. I have the evidence.

Fear lost its power over me, and what matters is that I tried. We will fail more than we succeed, but each failure leads to an even greater triumph.  A triumph we may not even recognize until years later.

What would you do if fear didn’t exist?

Posted by Crystal

Please tell me I’m not the only one totally obsessed with the movie Romy & Michelle’s high school reunion. I’m always quoting that movie, like when ever I’m out to lunch I ALWAYS ask for the “business women’s” special. Cause I AM a business women you know :)

I wanted to share an Isagenix Corporate business call I had the opportunity of doing last week. Here is the recording for any of you “business women” out there.

Also, just to give you a quick update on everything else. I know I told you like 3 months ago I was going to be making some changes on here, including moving my blog over to WordPress. Well, believe it or not, I’ve been working on it this WHOLE time. I just haven’t been able to find someone who can get it the way I want it. So hopefully things will be the way I want it very soon.

And as far as my pregnancy goes, I’m still feeling fine, no morning sickness yet, just getting a little pudgy around the mid section. That’s always my favorite part, looking like I have a gut instead of looking like I’m pregnant :) . I’ve gained 8 lbs already which sure makes my husband happy. He thinks the more you gain the healthier the baby. Anyway, I’ll be posting some baby bump pics for sure. Hope that’s okay with you guys.

Tomorrow I’m posting week TWO of the 4 week work out program. I’d love to get some feedback from any of you who are doing it with me. I love hearing from you and appreciate every comment.

Next week I’ll be hosting another giveaway!!! This time I’ll be giving away some REALLY cute jewelry!!!

Love you guys!!!! Thanks for all your love and support. Oh and thank you for all your votes on Top Mommy Blogs. I think I’m ranked like #48 right now. I’m pretty happy with that.

Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory

Posted by Crystal
I wanted to share this cute little book with you. It was given to me by Deseret Book to review. The author Hilary Weeks did such a great job at capturing all the ups and downs of motherhood. It’s short and sweet, and full of inspiration!!! I think this would make a GREAT gift for mothers day.
Hilary Weeks is actually one of my favorite LDS Singer Songwriters. I listened to her music almost everyday on my mission. She has such a beautiful voice, and has written some amazing songs.

Hilary Weeks Book with  bonus CD                                                        
Bedtime and Naptime And Bedtime and Naptime
Release Date: April 6, 2011
For many years, Hilary Weeks has entertained audiences across the country with her lighthearted songs and stories about parenting. Through these songs and skits, she shares her charming advice for coping with the demands of raising children, with insightful strategies like just focus on bedtime and naptime.  Finally, after thousands of requests from fans, Hilary has pulled all her stories and songs together into one witty collection. This unique book also includes a bonus disc featuring the same delightful songs fans have come to know and love. Perfect as a gift for any parent, Bedtime and Naptime . . . And Bedtime and Naptime will ease the stresses of raising children with laughter and joy.


Price: $14.99
Title: Bedtime and Naptime and Bedtime and Naptime: The Simple Joys of a Mom’s Life
Description: Hardcover: 76 pages, includes Bonus CD with Hilary’s popular song parodies!
Here is a sample of her music that she performed at a Time Out For Women that is now in her book.  - To Do List by Hilary Weeks  - My Favorite Things by Hilary Weeks
Bonus CD Track List: 
1.      Climb Every Mountain
2.      Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo
3.      I Believe I Can Fly
4.      To-Do List
5.      My Favorite Things
6.      Holy Cow Trail Stampede
7.      Who You Are

You’ll be able to find this book on the shelves at Deseret Book on April 6th.

And Congratulations to Debbie @ Suburb Sanity for winning the Wanna Be Balanced Day Planner!!!

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Posted by Crystal

With age comes beauty…

Oh wait

That’s not right is it…
With age comes WISDOM.

Or so they say.

Doesn’t seem to be that way in my case. More like, with age comes memory loss, saggy skin, fine lines and little black hairs on my chin.

I know there are many positive ways of looking at the aging process and I’m TRYING to see them :)

I do feel grateful for what I’ve accomplished up until now, but I guess I just want to be young and vibrant forever. I want to be able to have the energy and stamina to do many more things in my life. I’ve been actively working on my bucket list and actually feel like this last year I’ve grown tremendously. Turning 30 is a huge milestone in ones life.  At this point we all hope to have collected a certain amount of triumphs. Nobody wants to live with the “coulda  woulda  shoulda” thoughts.

Most of you know of my monthly “Life list” goals. Each month I choose one thing from my bucket list to focus on, like public speaking, photography, writing a song, ect.

This month is my month to learn how to write better. I really suck at this whole writing thing, but I’m determined to enhance my skills and get better. Turning 30 has really made me focus more on what I want to accomplish in my NEXT 30 years.

Lately I’ve been thinking about a bigger more lofty goal.

To write a book by the time I’m 35.

There I said it.

It’s out there, I’m committed, I’m gonna make it happen.

I find it kind of scary sharing such a goal. Perhaps it’s fear. Fear that I’m not good enough, smart enough, talented enough. Fear of what people will think?

Will they laugh? Will they believe in me? Will they support me?

Fear of FAILURE.

By sharing your goals with others, it holds you more accountable. It pushes you to work harder because failing in front of others is much worse than failing at something only you knew about.

It’s an absolute fact, that by SHARING your goals with others, you are more likely to achieve them.
Although I may not be the most talented writer in the world, I do believe I have a special story to tell. As most of us do. It’s all a matter of putting forth the effort to get the story told.

This month I’m reading a book called One Year to a Writing Life: Twelve Lessons to Deepen Every Writer’s Art and Craft.

For those of you who may have the same goal, or simply want to improve your creative writing skills, then this would be a great book for you. Here are a couple tips to start out.

Journaling is the best way to start because it establishes a habit of writing. Make it part of your routine. Record the significant events in your life. Describe how you’re feeling, what you’re feeling and why. Write about your dreams and aspirations. Write about love. Love for God, love for your spouse, love for your children. Write about your disappointments, trials, and most importantly lessons learned.

Incorporate regular timed writing. Start with just 10 minutes a day. Write what ever comes to mind and don’t stop writing for 10 minutes straight. Notice your surroundings and write about them in detail.

I’m really excited to dive into this new goal of mine and I hope you will all stick with me over the next 5 years to see it come to fruition.

So with all the fuss I’ve been putting up about turning 30, I guess it’s really not that bad. I’ll sure miss my twenties, but I’m excited about the story these next few decades will write.

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Posted by Crystal

I’ve been reading this new book called Outlive Your Life: You Were Made to Make A Difference. It has really opened up my eyes and gave me a new outlook on how I’m living my life. I love the spoken truth right there in the title, “you were made to make a difference”.   Each and every one of us are here for a special purpose, and we CAN make a difference.  So many people succumb to the idea that we are the way we are and there’s nothing we can do about it.
Life is about becoming the best WE can be, and hopefully lifting others in the process. There was a part in this book that really stood out to me.

“If you are in Christ, God’s Spirit will speak through you.
Let God unshell you.  And when he does, “make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that”(Gal. 6:4).  Don’t miss the opportunity to discover your language.
With whom do you feel most fluent? Teenagers? Drug addicts? The elderly? You may be tongue-tied around children but eloquent with executives. This is how God designed you. “God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well” (Rom. 12:6).
For whom do you feel most compassion?”

This part spoke to me in such a way, I immediately felt inspired to DO something about it.  An idea just came out of nowhere, but it was loud and clear. I thought to myself, I should speak at high schools about my life as a teen.  I’ve never thought to do this before, but I feel like this is something I should do in the near future. So many thoughts an idea’s I could expand on, and boy do I have some stories to share. It would be all about self worth of course, because those were the years I felt I had none. I always think, if only I could go back as the person I am now. It would have been a much better experience. I would have studied more, worried about boys less, and focused on reaching out to those who were in need of a friend.

I’ll never forget this boy in one of my classes. He kept to himself most of the time. Nobody ever even noticed him, including myself. He actually sat right in front of me and I never said a single word to him.

Later that year he committed suicide.

I can’t help but think, WHAT IF…

What if I had reached out to him. What if I took interest in him, talked to him, cared about him.

Could I have made a difference?

I love how the author in this book talks about figuring out what our language is. That’s what it’s all about. We need to be actively using those gifts God has given us. They are meant to be used to MAKE A DIFFERENCE, in our lives and the lives of others.

Here’s one of my favorite stories, and one I frequently read while I was on my mission.

There was a young man walking down a deserted beach just before dawn in the distance he saw a frail old man. As he approached the old man, he saw him picking up stranded starfish and throwing them back into the sea. The young man gazed in wonder as the old man again and again threw the small starfish from the sand to the water. He asked “Old man, why do you spend so much energy doing what seems to be a waste of time?” The old man explained that the stranded starfish would die if left in the morning sun. But there must be thousands of beaches and millions of starfish! “How can you make a difference?” The old man looked down at the small starfish in his hand and as he threw it to the safety of the sea, he said “I MAKE A DIFFERENCE TO THIS ONE.” – unknown

What is your language? And what can YOU do to make a difference?

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Posted by Crystal

Who needs it anyway?

Apparently we all love it. We read about it in the gossip magazines, which we all know is never true. 
We thrive on those reality shows like The Bachelor, okay maybe not ALL of us, but definitely the majority of us, myself included:) 

But then of course when it’s happening in our own lives we despise it!

… or do we? Have you ever thought that maybe we create the drama in our lives?
Yes, we absolutely do. We can’t control others, but we can ALWAYS control how we react to others.
Nobody’s exempt from dealing with life’s difficulties. We all have drama at some point in our lives.  With family members, friends, spouses, children. It’s inevitable and it SUCKS, excuse my word choice, but it just does. As frustrating as it can be, we have to remember that it’s all part of Gods plan. We’re here to be tested. Which means, God wants us to learn how to deal with these things in a positive manner. I love the Carrie Underwoods song, “So Small”.

I know it’s hard on a rainy day, you wanna shut the world out and just be left alone
But don’t run out on your faith
Sometimes that mountain you’ve been climbing is just a grain of sand
And what you’ve been out there searching for forever, is in your hands
And when you figure out, love is all that matters after all
sure makes everything else seem so small

It’s so easy to get lost inside
a problem that seems so big at the time
It’s like a river thats so wide
It swallows you whole
While you’re sitting around thinking bout what you can’t change
and worrying about all the wrong things
Time’s flyin by
movin so fast
better make it count cause you can’t get it back

It’s such an inspirational song and reminds me that sometimes the things that I’m worried most about are so insignificant. It’s easy to fall into a pity me party, but the best way to deal with those kinds of situations is to focus on solutions. Solutions meaning what YOU can do to fix it. Easier said than done, but it’s something I’m working on.

Cheers to less drama and more meaningful time spent with the people that matter most.

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Posted by Crystal

So guess what? Did you know that it’s been a WHOLE year now since I started my blog? I really can’t believe it!  179 posts, 65,000 visits, 485 followers, 860 facebook fans, and 3,764 comments later. Not that the stats really matter… okay, who am I kidding, the stats TOTALLY matter :) It’s really what keeps me going, if I didn’t have all the support of you guys then what would be the point. I might as well just keep a journal instead of a public blog. Really though, I am truly grateful for all your kind words of encouragement and advice. I’ve grown so much and learned so much over the past year, and I really have you all to thank.
Okay, so now the reason for the title of this post.  I must tell you, writing a song is FLIPPIN HARD!!! I’m not going to give up   no siree, but I have developed a whole new appreciation for song writers. I’ve been sticking to my commitment but I’m in MAJOR need of some inspiration. This whole process has been pretty discouraging, but as I persist I’m finding it a little easier… well not easier, but I guess a little less daunting.  This type of thing does not come easy to me, but I’m reminded of the quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson

That which we persist in doing becomes easier, not that the task itself has become easier, but that our ability to perform it has improved.”

And now for the giveaway!!!!
You all remember those cute Cabaret Leggings I got from Effie’s Heart?

Well they have offered to sponsor a giveaway!!!!  We were going to have these leggings be the prize, but they are going so fast we didn’t want to risk not having the right size left when the contest was over. So if you’ve been wanting to get a pair of these you better hurry up. They are offering FREE SHIPPING anywhere in the US.
They have so many other cute clothes and accessories that it wasn’t hard to find something else for this giveaway. First let me share a little about them.

For all modern women who yearn for the true glamour of yesteryear, Effie�s Heart has come to save the day. Kimo, founder of Effie�s Heart, has a lust for easy living, an appreciation of eclectic beauty, and a taste for the finer things of fashion�s past – all of which come together to bridge new fashion ground in Effie�s Heart.

As a fashion adventurist who believes in the accessibility of style, Kimo has created a line wearable by any modern woman who believes that comfort can be bed-mates with fashion. Using color palettes inspired by antique catalogs, art history, nature, and vintage clothing, Kimo has painted a fashion canvas that is both endearing and unique. Fighting against the forces of sameness that trend services push onto mass culture, Kimo would like to introduce Effie�s Heart to all those who believe there is still room for original inspiration.”

This shirt is my favorite. I got it in black too!

Now for the giveaway PRIZE!!!
A $36 Gift Card!!!

Don’t you just LOVE these gloves? They are called the East End Gloves. They are priced at $41 and they also have them in the Bay blue, same color as this shirt. I’m SO excited about my new stylish gloves, and now one of YOU can also have a pair. Just leave a comment here to be entered, you must be a follower of this blog or fan on Facebook in order to win. For more chances to win, you can leave additional comments by doing a few of these things below (leave a separate comment for each one you do). We appreciate your help in spreading the word. (Be sure to leave your email address with your comment if it’s not already public in a profile)

This giveaway will end 11-30

Posted by Crystal

Why do we stop dreaming? At what point do we decide we can’t do it and our internal monologue begins clouding our minds with negativity…   you’ll never be that great…  that’s not your talent…  you’re not gifted enough, pretty enough, smart enough? 

How can we rekindle those childhood dreams and make them our reality?

When I embarked upon this idea of a blog, I started out by sharing a small part of my “Life List“, the list of things I hope to accomplish within my lifetime. We all know there’s very little time to do anything else on top of just being a mom, but recently I’ve been waking up about an hour before my kids so I can dedicate a little time to developing my mind and exploring new endeavors.  There are still so many things I want to try out and learn. We have all been blessed with certain gifts, but how can we know what they are unless we’re entertaining fresh ideas, and perusing new talents. When I look at this list I think, someday I’m going to get to do these things… *sigh*… but you know what? That someday is going to be NOW! No more making excuses about how there’s “no time” for it.  All it takes is a little evaluation.  How many times a day am I doing things that are simply a waste?     TONZ!!!        I could watch less of my favorite shows, spend less time online, and sacrifice one hour of my sleep in order for me to make these things happen.  I don’t want to look back in ten years and regret I didn’t do more with my time.  Life will always be busy no matter what stage of life we’re in.  I can’t remember a time in my life when it WASN’T busy, even before kids.  

I’ve decided to pick one thing from my life list and focus on it for 1-6 months, depending on how much I’m enjoying it and so forth. I can always come back to it too. This way it will keep things interesting and exciting for me, without feeling overwhelmed with the many other things I’d like to do.  I love the quote, “it’s not the destination, it’s the journey that matters”. We don’t need to stress over getting something finished, or perfecting the talent, just enjoy the journey. 

I’ve always wanted to write and sing songs,  I shared a little about this along with my American Idol Moment video, but now it’s time to take action.  My goal is not to become famous or to write a hit song, my motivation behind it rely’s solely upon the idea of learning what all goes into creating a song. I’m always trying to get better at writing and expressing myself, not because I want to write a New York Times best seller, rather to relate to people, to be an example to my children, to inspire others to reach for their dreams. I don’t need to become the next Oprah to feel like I’m making a difference. If I help just one person in my lifetime, that will be enough for me.

I recently purchased this new software that is an incredible tool for anyone who wants to enhance their creative writing skills or even write a song of your own.  I was just googling about song writing and came across this video. Once I watched it, I was instantly sold. Such an incredible resource for the aspiring writer. It’s called Master Writer and they offer a free 10 day trial. Just simply go to their site and download the free trial, it’s that easy. I’ve already been playing around on it and absolutely LOVE how helpful it is. Just watch this video and you’ll see what I mean.

It’s time to take action and what better time to start than NOW. Lets keep those dreams alive and start living them.
What are your dreams?