Sleepy Puppy Video

Sleepy Puppy

 As I mentioned in an early post, our family recently added puppy Paisley to our family.  So far, so good with this little girl.  She is a Golden Labradoodle who loves the water, playing with the kids, taking walks in the woods and SLEEPING!  (works for me).  

Check out the video below for a good laugh.  Paisley has a bit of narcolepsy and can’t seem to stay awake.  Our family was laughing for an hour straight watching her do this.

Jennifer Ford Berry

Organize Now in Korean!

Organize Now in Korean

The front cover!

Organize Now in Korean

The back cover!

I am thrilled to announce that Organize Now! is available in Korean.  Funny how I can not understand a single word in a book that I wrote…LOL.  But, I am proud that this book continues to be sold world wide.  

I love the simplicity and clean colors of the cover.

I hope all of my fans that read Korean will enjoy and give me their feedback!

Jennifer Ford Berry

Life Changing Books: some of my favorites

Life Changing Books: some of my favorites

Not only do I love to write but I really love to read.  I have been reading a book constantly for as long as I can remember.

I do love my Kindle for the convenience of grabbing a book I hear about immediately, the sample chapter is the best invention ever…thank you Amazon!! However, I do still prefer a hard copy book.  To me there is nothing like the smell and feel of a book in my hand.  Oh how I love to stroll through Barnes and Noble.

About 15 years ago I started an excel sheet to keep track of all the books I have read.  I know this may seemed a little “over the top organized” for some of you…LOL. But, it does come in handy!  

When I am in need of a book I can easily go back to my list to see what authors I have enjoyed.  Oh, I forgot to mention that I rate each book I’ve read 1-5…(I guess I am giving out all of my OCD secrets on this one…don’t laugh!)  It also comes in handy when friends or family members ask me for a book suggestion…which seems to happen a lot!  Actually my Aunt, Mom, Cousin and I were just talking about books to read the other night.  We often suggest our favorites to each other, which is what gave me the idea for this post.

I love getting book suggestions (and giving them) so I thought it would be fun to start sharing my book list here with you.  And if I am lucky maybe you will give ME some ideas too!

My favorite books are ones that change my life!  Whether they teach me something I didn’t know, enrich me or just show me inside someone else’s struggles so that I can have more compassion I love a book that will change how I think or feel forever!  That is why I am beginning this series of posts with a list of my favorite life changing books.

Books That Have Changed My Life

A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson

Take Time for Your Life by Cheryl Richardson

One Day My Soul Just Opened Up by Iyanla Vanzant

The Dark Side of the Light Chasers by Debbie Ford

The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson

10 Secrets for Success & Inner Peace by Dr. Wayne Dyer

Boundaries by Henry Cloud

Inside a Kingdom by Carmen BinLaden

Down Came the Rain by Brooke Shields

How I Write: Secrets of a Bestselling Author by Janet Evanovich

The Kite Runner by Khaed Hosseni

The Confident Woman by Joyce Meyer

Shanghai Diary by Ursula Bacon

How to Succeed at Being Yourself by Joyce Meyer

The Go Giver by Bob Berg

The Secret by Rhonda Byrne

The Top 10 Distinctions Between Millionaires and The Middle Class by Keith Cameron Smith

The Shack by William P Young

I hope you check out some of these favorite life changing books of mine. To start keeping track of the books you have read please feel free to use the printable I use.

Meet Our New Puppy Paisley

 

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Meet the newest member of our family…Paisley the puppy!  She is half Golden Retriever and half Labradoodle.  We just brought her home but luckily have been able to see her since she was born since a friend of our family’s dog had 9 puppies!  We haven’t had a dog in 3 years so needless to say my kids are pretty excited!  

The video below is when we introduced her to our Angora Flop: Brookie.  I think it should be on an episode of “Too Cute“!

What I’ve Learned From My Brother-in-Law

I've learnedMy brother-in-law, John, lost his fight against brain cancer last week.  John started having seizures last spring and soon after; the doctors discovered an aggressive tumor growing on his brain.  In August, John had an operation to have the tumor removed.  When the surgery was over the doctors came out and informed my sister-in-law and her young children that the tumor was in fact cancer…their worst nightmare.  The doctors explained that John could try radiation and chemotherapy but basically there were no guarantees.

The next couple of months were extremely difficult.  We planned a benefit to help raise money for the expense of an illness like this. Unfortunately, John spent the day of the benefit in the hospital having his second surgery. That surgery was a success and John was in pretty good shape for about 4 weeks.  Those weeks were truly a gift. It seemed like we were going to sail right through the holidays until John needed to go back to the hospital due to becoming dehydrated. It was meant to be a quick trip there and back to get the fluids he needed. Unfortunately, John’s condition went down hill quickly.  I hate to say it but he was no match for this type of cancer.  

If you have been reading this blog for a while you may remember a post I wrote last year about cancer, when my Dad was diagnosed with it. Yes, I have said it before and I will say it again cancer really sucks! 

John did not want to be in the hospital and he really did not want to spend his last days there.  So I am happy to say that we brought John home, where he wanted to be, four days before he passed away.  This was not an easy task but it was necessary to follow through with John’s wishes.  If you are ever faced with a situation like this my advice to you is to be an advocate for the person you love!  Tell the doctors exactly what you want and don’t take no for an answer.  

John passed away surrounded by his family and best friends. This has truly been one of the saddest and most difficult experiences of my life.  My heart broke a little more each day for my sister-in-law, nieces and nephews.  But in the midst of all the pain and sadness I have learned more about life and the extraordinary life of my brother-in-law.

John was known for his random acts of kindness.  He was never too busy to help a friend, family member or stranger. He spent his life helping others. Ironically, my newest book was released during John’s illness with the last chapter titled: Organize a Celebration of Life.  This week I was privileged in being able to help plan this for John and let me tell you it was the most beautiful service I have ever been part of because it was spiritual, uplifting and soooo…John. We prayed, told stories, shared memories and asked everyone who attended to commit to one random act of kindness this year in John’s honor.  I have already heard stories of these commitments taking place and it is amazing to hear how John’s memory lives on in those around us.

I do believe that we learn from all experiences whether they are easy or difficult. Here is what I’ve learned from my brother-in-law and his passing:

-the simple things matter most

-a few minutes of your time can make a world of difference in someone’s life

-being a hands on parent is the best gift you can give your children

-making people laugh and feel good about themselves is truly a legacy to leave behind

-we will never know how many days we have left so we should live each one like it’s our last

-when you leave this world people will never discuss what you owned, only what you’ve done with the time you were given

-most importantly I have been reminded of what matters most: love, God, family and true friends   

I hope our story reminds you to hold your loved ones close while you have them, to be generous and giving and to remember what is truly important in this life.  I hope that it is obvious to you that life is about so much more than things.  And I hope that you will consider John’s story as motivation to give of yourself to others this holiday season and in the new year.  If you do these things it will make me happy to know that John’s life has not only taught me lessons but others as well.

Ford Family Photo

MorningSunPhotography: LFord &emdash;

I thought I would share these pics with you of my family!  We had them taken recently and I love how they came out.  

So introducing the Ford Family! The top picture is all of us.  Including from left to right:

  • My husband Josh, my kiddos and I
  • My sister Rachel, husband Brian and there son
  • My parents Linda and Randy with my sister’s other son
  • My sister Stefanie, husband Mark and their two kiddos

MorningSunPhotography: LFord &emdash; The 6 cousins…aren’t they cute?

Bound for Bloggy Boot Camp

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Well, I am so excited to say that tomorrow I am headed to Chicago for my very first blog conference..Bloggy Boot Camp!  I am such a self professed computer geek that it brings me pure joy to think about sitting for hours learning about blogging and all other things pertaining to building my brand via the computer!  I am headed their with my Mothertime Marketplace business partner, Jessi Boardman and our good friend from Motherthyme, Jennifer Dempsey. 

I am thrilled about this trip not only to learn, learn, learn but to meet all the girls, that I only know through my computer screen, in person!  If I would have been half as interested in all of my college courses as I am in this, I would have graduated with a much higher GPA!  Speaking of college so much has changed since I graduated.  If you would have told me back in 19– (LOL) I would have to attend a blog conference, just to stay on top of things, I would have never believed it!  Hopefully all that I learn will make this blog more of a treat for those of you that actually read it!  I will be sure to post pictures when I return or follow along on Facebook.

My Goal to Be a Better Mom

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I want to be a better mom.  Each day I go to bed feeling like I gave it my best in regards to work and my career but I am sad and a little ashamed to say that I don’t always feel like I gave it my best as a mother.

I am a very goal oriented person.  If I set a goal I strive for it.  The hardest part is setting the goal in the first place.  So the other night I committed myself to a new goal: to become a better mother.

Now you may be wondering what kind of mother I am now?  I will tell you…I am a good mother in the fact that I make sure my kids eat healthy, get plenty of sleep, are doing well in school and feel like they can come to me about anything.  I love them more than life itself and treat them with love, compassion and respect. And you better believe I am really good at teaching them how to organize.  Do I beat my kids? No.  Do I call them names? No.  Am I doing anything really wrong? No.

I will admit I don’t like playing.  My mother once admitted to me that she disliked playing too and in fact never played with us.  I turned out all right so I was happy that my mother was so open, it helped lessen my own guilt.  Don’t get me wrong, I play cards and board games, the Wii or basketball with my kids but in general I really avoid playing.  My husband on the other hand is an amazingly playful parent. He LOVES to play (thank God).

So yes, I would say in general I am a good mom. My husband would say I am a great mom.  Hopefully my kids would too.  But personally I know I can be a BETTER mom.  My kids are now 7 & 10.  It seems like a week ago they were 2 & 5 (one of my favorite times).  I blinked and now that time is gone.  Now that they are 7 & 10 life is definitely easier.  They brush their own teeth, they can get their own snacks, they get up for school, dress themselves and make their own breakfast and on the weekends they never wake me up if they get up first …pretty amazing huh?  On one hand this new “easier” life is awesome.  I am finally getting a little bit of a break!  But on the other hand, I think their new “self-sufficient-ness” is making me a little lazier.  And since I don’t have to DO everything for them I feel like I spend less time with them.  This scares me….what will happen when they are 16 & 19?  I REALLY won’t have much time with them.

Quite frankly I am afraid to blink again…for fear that when I do 7 & 10 will be a distant memory.  This is my real reason for this post.  I am committing to being a better mom.  Committing to living in the moment more and to enjoy each moment I spend with them.  I  have made the decision to find something small or big I can do each day to ensure that when I look back on these days I will know in my heart that I was not just a good mom but the very BEST mom I could be.

Do you feel like you are the BEST mom you can be?  If so, what do you do each day to prove this?  If not, how do you think you can improve?  I would love to hear your thoughts!

Jennifer Ford Berry