02 Aug

Summer Inspiration

Here are some things that have been inspiring me lately. My wish is they stir something in you as well.  I hope you all are well, enjoying summer, having fun, looking for the small beauties, doing what makes you happy, and spending time with the people you love.

Michelle Magadalena

Michelle Magadalena

 

Wishing you beautiful summer days. What is finding you inspired and happy this season?

19 Jul

How Grief Taught Me Self-Love

Today I’m over at maddymoon.com talking about how my grief actually helped me have a better relationship with myself. It is a raw, vulnerable, and authentic piece that came straight from my heart. No filter, just me. 

journaling

I am grateful to be sharing my message with Maddy Moon and her community. Maddy is a lovely woman who is on a mission to help others attain a positive body image and gain freedom from the constraints many of us allow food to have over our lives. I love listening to Maddy’s passion on her podcast around the topic, as feeling free in your body and around your food is something that resonates with me on a deep level.

Read More

28 Jun

How to Do Everything Better.

There was one point in my life when ‘more’ mattered. I wanted more money, more experiences checked off a my list, more projects in the works, more outfits in my closet…. more, more, and more of more. I thought that more was better. In my youth, I struggled with food and believed more junk and the more fresh baked cookies I could shove in my mouth meant the more comforted I would feel. In my teens, I turned to material goods and thought more expensive handbags  would result in a heightened experience and a cooler, more evolved self. In my college years, I thought more partying, more distraction, and the more pounds I could drop, would equate with more happiness. And recently in my twenties, I thought the more I could accomplish in my day to day, the more fulfilled and powerful I would find myself. I thought that if I could accomplish more that I could on some level be able to value myself more. I have always thought more was the way. Holy shit…. was I wrong.

IMG_1339

Read More

14 Jun

On Self-Care & A DIY Face Mask

“I used to spend so much time reacting and responding to everyone else that my life had no direction. Other people’s lives, problems, and wants set the course for my life. Once I realized it was okay for me to think about and identify what I wanted, remarkable things began to take place in my life.”  -Sye Wells

My days are normally pretty full. I have 3 kids, one who is 10 months and two who live with us half-time, a business that I love and am continually trying to grow, a home to manage, amazing friendships to foster, a husband to support and love… oh yeah and then there’s me.

I find it generally pretty easy as a woman to take care of people around me. It comes with a certain ease and fulfillment and that innate sense to care for others is  wonderful. It is part of who I am as a sensitive, loving woman. I feel grateful to have been blessed with all I have… my children, my husband, a beautiful home, and career doing what fuels me. But in all of my going and doing and accomplishing, sometimes I admit that taking care of myself is not as easy as taking care of everyone and everything around me. In the midst of all I have “to do”, I find myself going and going and running around at what feels like 90 mph. I am busy! I have a lot to do! I find myself getting irritated with husband at times when he doesn’t do this or that and I am, in turn, whirling around our house in a wild frenzy.

Read More

01 Jun

On Community & Nourish 360

At the beginning of 2016, one of my New Year’s resolutions was to find a group of amazing women to create a community with. I was yearning for  space and relationships that fostered support, fun, and ease. I needed a light. 2015 was an extremely difficult year for me, losing one of our twin boys and my dad  left me confused, tired, and emotional. And, honestly, what I was craving were some girlfriends. People who could understand and simply listen. People who I admired and simply liked being around. And since moving on from college, I found it more difficult to create lasting and strong relationships with a group of women. So, I wrote down my wish and made one action toward my goal. One step. I started by inviting a group of ladies I knew in the area to brunch at my home. The brunch was so much fun and one of my friends suggested we start a book club from our group that had gathered. Since then we have gone on to have several book clubs, fun nights, and connect with one another on a deeper level. And it has been a truly healing experience for me. Our community of women brings fulfillment and joy to my life in a way that cannot be filled by my husband or by my immediate family. My friends hold space, understand, and support me in a way that is nourishing, helpful, and authentic. And they teach me how to show up in return and be a friend and a supportive woman. They are my peers, great source of information, inspiration, joy, and an uplifting energy in my life.

 

Stephanie_Magdalena12262 (1)

Michelle Magdalena Photography

Read More

20 May

On Sugar & What Works For You

Pondering

So I like sugar. This might seem odd to you. I am a wellness coach who specializes in working with women around nutrition and healthful eating. According to what I see on social media, read in books, and what society tells me… I should not like sugar. I should not eat it. i should not look at it. I should not keep it in my house. I should not do a lot of things if I want to consider myself a healthy person, let alone help others attain a higher level of health and well-being as well.

Well, guess what? I like sugar. I don’t mean this in a way where I drink soda or throw candy bars into my grocery basket in the checkout line. I don’t binge on sweets, although at one point in my life I used to, or think I have unhealthy relationship with sugar. But I do like it. To me its fun to have from time to time, and I personally do not like the feeling of being restrictive with food.   AND, I’m not perfect. I am on a journey like everyone else on this planet. I haven’t reached a place where I lack room for growth or look down at everyone else around me telling them what they should be or what they should do. And guess what? No one has reached that place. I don’t believe it even exists.

Read More

08 May

To All Women On Mother’s Day

Hi ladies, Happy Mother’s Day. Yes to you. If you are a mom. If you are not a mom. If you are a stepmom, dog mom, cat mom, or auntie. If you are a best friend, godparent, sister, daughter, or other supportive role in someone’s life; Happy Mother’s Day to you. 

girlfriends

Mother’s Day used to be a hard day for me. As a stepparent I would feel less than because I was not a birth parent. Not because anyone else made me feel this way, it was because I allowed myself feel this way. I glossed over all of the elements that I did for others: the caring, the listening, the supporting. All those elements of motherhood. On Mother’s Day I felt what I was not. Instead of celebrating all that I am as a woman.

And then something amazing happened. I became a mother. A more legitimate kind of mother people told me. I gave birth. And not much changed. I mean, thats not really true, because my whole life changed… but then again nothing changed. I was still a stepmom, wife, daughter, sister and friend. I didn’t feel too much of a difference from being a stepmom and a “real” mom. I still loved whole heartedly, still supported, still listened, still tried my best. And I am guessing thats what you do too, regardless if you are a mom or not.

big sister

As women, we all do a lot of mothering. All the roles I listed above take love and care and time. To all women I encourage you to expand the scope of what you are celebrating today. To celebrate yourself and all women and all of the various types of mothering we do. The various types of love we give to others, not just our children, but to everyone in our lives.

I believe all women are mothers by nature. In many different ways. So today, I celebrate you. On so many amazing, loving, and motherly levels.

In what ways do you care and support others? In what ways can you expand your scope of what Mother’s Day means to you in order to make it even more fulfilling and true?

06 May

Friday Inspiration Plus The Giveaway Winner

Yay! Happy Friday everyone. I hope you all have a beautiful first weekend in May. Below is some spring inspiration for incorporating more self-care, knowledge, and well-being into your life:

@maddfoxmagdalena

michelle magdalena photography

 

 

And of course, giveaway news! I had fun pulling the winner yesterday. Thank you for all of your comments. I truly want to build more and more of a community here on the blog, to be able to support one another, listen, spread acceptance and knowledge. If you know anyone who you think would benefit and enjoy this blog and community… please share! And alas, the winner of the “Eat Pretty,Live Well” guided journal and something extra is…

Kristina!

Yay! And as a thank you to everyone for your authentic and honest sharing, I will be gifting you my Gluten Free Flour Guide & Recipe Bundle. It has some of my favorite wholesome and gluten free baked recipes. Simply email me at hello (at) stephaniehorning (dot) com with your contact details and I send you your prizes. 

And please look for a post in your inbox on Sunday for a special Mother’s Day note from me…. regardless if you have kids or not.

xo
Steph

22 Apr

On Effortless Ease + A Giveaway.

“When you are conceived, all you are is a double strand of DNA — a speck of information and intelligence that differentiates into a hundred trillion cells, which then become a fully formed baby with eyes, nose, ears, brain, arms, legs, genitals. You didn’t do anything to make this happen, and yet you made it happen. In that blueprint, that speck of information, is a plan for when your teeth will grow out, when you will reach puberty…..It’s all there in the speck, and it happens with effortless spontaneity, with effortless ease, with no resistance.”

-Deepak Chopra via Power, Freedom, and Grace

Last week, I came down with a cold. It really wasn’t that big of a deal. The symptoms were per usual;  just your typical stuffy nose, fatigue, and mental fog. Pretty run of the mill for another change of seasons. It wasn’t that big of a deal, until everything started to become a struggle. 

tips on effortless ease

I am the type of person who likes to push myself. I like to accomplish. I like to tell my husband all the various sorts of projects that I managed throughout my day. It somehow makes me stand taller and lends a feeling of strength, capability, and general bad-assery. But really, those things just flow and come easy to me most of the time. They come with a sort of ease.

But last week. I didn’t feel like this. I felt as though everything was hard. It all became a struggle. But, I kept pushing. I thought, “Well, maybe if I can’t do a handful of tasks at once, I’ll listen to some podcasts so at least I’m not wasting time. Yes, I’ll learn instead.” So I pushed myself to learn. My mental fog made this difficult. I struggled to learn. So I tried another approach. I pushed myself to write. At least I could (sort of ) rest and write.  I wrote and I rewrote and it all just read like a jumbled mess. And then I probably pushed myself into about 20 or 30 different approaches in order to be productive until I finally tuned in to what I really needed. Until I decided to surrender to effortless ease.

There is a lot of talk about hard work and pushing yourself and “don’t stop, won’t stop” in our culture. Push, fight, struggle, more. I get it, hard work is important and I believe in devoting time, energy, and focus to anything you want in your life to expand. BUT, what I also believe in is coming from a place of ease. I learned this approach from Deepak Chopra in one of my all time favorite books, Power, Freedom, & Grace. In it, he describes that lasting happiness stems from a place of effortless ease. If you allow it to, the universe will guide you to to joy, happiness, and success if you follow this ease. If you follow its lead in what flows effortlessly from within you and allow for what feels right to you. 

So I finally did just that. I sat down, enjoyed a book, drank some fruit water, and threw in a couple of peanut butter cups for good measure. I stopped fighting and started enjoying. I did things that came with ease; I did what felt natural and flowed from inside of me.  I put down the to do list, I stopped pushing myself, and just did what flowed.  And after a day, my creativity and inspiration returned. Things no longer seemed like a struggle. I scrapped what I was originally going to write (and spend hours on) and allowed this post to come from a place of ease and internal knowledge instead. 

IMG_0886

Now, I’m not saying that life is always suppose to look like me on the couch enjoying peanut butter cups. I’m not saying that the answer is to throw in the towel. But, maybe if we start approaching our difficult situations with more ease and less fight, just maybe… we will see a different way of being. A way that seems more manageable and contains less stress and more trust. Trust that everything will work itself out the way it is intended to be. I know life wont always come easy. I get it, I have newborn.

I just refuse to believe that our lives have to come from a place of fight and struggle all the time. I believe there is a higher state of being.

I believe that while we might have good intentions surrounding our push hard, struggle more mentalities, maybe we need to introduce more ease into our lives and trust that the universe will guide us if we stop fighting so much and start listening. Start listening to what wants to flow from within us and stop struggling to create what is not meant to be. I believe when we start tuning in more to what flows effortlessly from within us is when more  beauty, success, and happiness will be able to unfold in ways we could have never before imagined.

 

So in this spirit, I felt like doing a giveaway because …. it was just something I felt like doing. And that was enough for me. I just received a beautiful journal for health in the mail:  Eat Pretty, Live Well: A Guided Journal for Nourishing Beauty, Inside & Out by Jolene Hart.  I wanted to share it with you. It is a follow-up to the author’s first book, Eat Pretty, which is full of great information on how to eat more healthfully and feel amazing. I love how guided journals create space for you as a reader to listen to your internal knowledge and reflect. So, for a chance to win a copy of this beautiful guided journal plus a package of peanut butter cups, simply comment on this post below and subscribe to  my newsletter. (Go to my homepage and enter your email address in the sidebar) The giveaway will be open until May 5th, and the winner announced on the 6th. 

DSC_0335

And so my question to you is…How do you stand in the way of your own inner knowledge and effortless ease? What are some ways you incorporate flow, ease, and intuition into your every day?