Ashley Does: 30 Day Fill Your Cup Challenge

Work. School. Cooking meals. Keeping house. Laundry. Running errands. Providing taxi services for tiny humans.

It’s impossible to tally all the different ways women take care of everyone and everything around them.

It’s important work, what women do. We are the people who keep life running smoothly. We make sure everyone’s where they need to be, when they need to be there, and wearing pants. Usually while we have less than stellar hair. (Let’s be honest here.)

It is so important for women to take the time to care for themselves. If you run all day long, all week long, without taking some time for yourself, you’ll run yourself out!

It’s in our nature to put ourselves last. There are so many important things to get done that self-care gets pushed to the back burner.

Because of this, I am issuing you a challenge that I hope you will accept. Because you are worth it! You are worth taking the time to make sure you #fillyourcup and take care of yourself so you can better tackle all the things you have to accomplish.

The 30 Day Fill Your Cup Challenge

#FILLYOURCUP30Day

The premise is simple: commit to 15 minutes a day in the month of April to do something for yourself. Something that fills you up, recharges you, and makes you a better YOU.

You can use these suggestions or come up with your own. I designed this list to be tasks that are easily completed in 15 minutes a day, but take more time if you can! And while this list is geared toward the calendar month of April (more lengthy tasks are listed on the weekend days) you can rearrange them as you need to.

The point is to commit to yourself and follow through with that commitment. Treat yourself how you would treat anyone else: if you make a promise to a friend, coworker, or family member, you aren’t likely to break it are you? Treat yourself that well. You deserve to be treated that way!

Print out this list and pin it up somewhere in your house that it will remind you to take the time to #fillyourcup every day.  Check back on Mondays throughout April for your weekly reminder of upcoming challenges.

I can’t wait to hear how your participation in the 30 Day Fill Your Cup Challenge changes your life! Be sure to come back and tell us how it went in the comments!

Need daily encouragement for this challenge? Join us in the Pretty Things Lounge on Facebook where we’ll be sharing our #fillyourcup successes!

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Ashley Does: My Marriage Comes Before My Kids – And Yours Should, Too

Marriage is a union of two people who have promised to stick together through anything life may throw at them.

It’s sacred. It’s hard work. It’s rewarding. It’s exhausting.

Besides the relationship I have with God, my marriage is the most important relationship in my life.

It’s so important that I place it above all others – including my kids.  Continue reading “Ashley Does: My Marriage Comes Before My Kids – And Yours Should, Too”

Ashley Does: Mama Meltdown

I had a bit of a panic attack last night.

I am returning to work full time, after being a stay at home mom (and work from home mom) for seven years.

SEVEN. YEARS.

I thought I was fine. I have a goal in mind. Working outside the home is required for this goal. My girls are older now, I won’t be missing any firsts while they are in school or daycare. I’ve got this. Right?

So. Very. Wrong.  Continue reading “Ashley Does: Mama Meltdown”

Ashley Does: How To Blog With A Toddler In 30 Easy Steps!

How do Mom Bloggers do it all? How do they manage to corral an underfoot toddler while consistently putting out great content on a sometimes daily basis?

I’ve found the secret, friends.

This is How To Blog With A Toddler in 30 Easy Steps.

You can thank me later.

Continue reading “Ashley Does: How To Blog With A Toddler In 30 Easy Steps!”

Ashley Does: A Day In The Life Of A Work From Home Mom

The life of a work from home mom is not exactly what I would call glamorous.

It’s fulfilling, and crazy, and busy, and sometimes boring. It’s also a lifestyle that is often misinterpreted and highly debated (just ask the internet).

I took a day in my life as a work from home mom and took a picture every hour to explore some of those emotions and intricacies.

It ended up being an introspective exercise that took a lot longer than I had anticipated to write about. While it sounds like a perfect solution to the “to work or not to work” debate…working from home definitely has its high and low points.  Continue reading “Ashley Does: A Day In The Life Of A Work From Home Mom”

Ashley Does: Helping My Kids Work Hard and Manage Their Money

Money management. 

It’s a hard concept for many fully grown, functioning adults to grasp.

I know it was a hard lesson for me to understand even after “growing up” and starting a family.

Because of that, Joe and I have decided that it’s one of our priorities that we teach our girls the importance of money management, working hard for what they have, and learning how to patiently wait for what they want rather than impulse buying all.the.things.

You can imagine how well this is going over with our 8, 6, and 3 year old daughters.

To their credit, they are eager. They want to get the money and put it in the envelopes they made at church. It’s the working for it part that they are getting hung up on.

Aren’t we all? Continue reading “Ashley Does: Helping My Kids Work Hard and Manage Their Money”

Ashley Does: Freedom Friday (Freedom From The Mompetition – Updated)

This article was originally published December 6, 2014. I have come a long way since this post, and SO much has changed. But one thing hasn’t: the deep, burning desire to distance myself from the Mompetition. It felt like the right time to share this with you again – I hope it brings you some freedom today!

Not enough.

Those are the two words I spoke at our church’s Women’s Conference two years ago. They had asked us to come up to the front and speak the words that we had identified with, whatever those may be, and then speak the words that God actually uses to identify us. Continue reading “Ashley Does: Freedom Friday (Freedom From The Mompetition – Updated)”

Ashley Does: 10 Ways To Fill Your Cup First

Being a woman is exhausting.

It is our nature to take care of everything and everyone around us.

Our families. Our spouses. Our children. Our work. Our homes.

Often times, it’s hard to remember to stop and take a minute to breathe.

There’s a saying that I have been repeating to myself a lot lately:

You can’t pour from an empty cup. 

Continue reading “Ashley Does: 10 Ways To Fill Your Cup First”

Ashley Does: The Four Gift Holiday Rule

Last year at Christmastime, we were poor.

I’m being super honest with you right now. POOR. Like, there was no money at all.

We decided to have a minimalist Christmas and explained to the girls what that meant:

Santa would come, of course. Stockings would be filled. But other than that, there would be no other presents.

When they asked why, we did what all good parents would do: we lied to them stretched the truth a bit.

We told them we were saving all our Christmas money for a special trip to Disneyland.

That is partially true. We do plan on a special trip to Disneyland at some point in the future. So it wasn’t exactly lying to them.

That’s not exactly the point here though so moving right along… Continue reading “Ashley Does: The Four Gift Holiday Rule”

Ashley Does: The Technology Struggle

There are moments in parenting that make you want to pat yourself on the back for your brilliance…and there are moments that make you want to question everything you’ve ever done as a parent.

Today, my 8 and 6 year old daughters spontaneously gave me their Christmas lists on the way to school. It quickly turned into one of those “question everything” moments.

These lists included the usual: bikes, walkie talkies, toys inspired by their favorite movies and TV shows.

But then, my 8-year-old dropped a bomb on me: “Mommy, for Christmas I want an iPod, with a case. The kind that plays music and has games and apps and can text.”

Continue reading “Ashley Does: The Technology Struggle”