Quote of the Day – Greatness Is A Choice (# 1)

“You have greatness within you. You are designed for greatness, but you are not predestined for greatness. That’s a choice.”

Everyone has greatness within them, but they have to choose to realize it. It’s easy to get caught up in the way of the world and to go with the flow. Being comfortable in your daily routine is easy. Most of us don’t love it, but it’s hard to break out of that comfort zone most of the time, but out of the comfort zone is where you’ll realize your greatness and find success. Becoming great doesn’t just happen. It’s a choice. One of the most influential quotes on greatness I’ve ever heard was by Pope Benedict XVI:

“The world promises you comfort, but you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness.”

How profound is that!? Don’t conform to the ways of the world just to be comfortable only to draw near to the end of your life and realize your potential. Start today! Drink a Spark, break out of your comfort zone, and own this day! “You don’t have to be great to start; but you have to start to be great!”

The world promises you comfort, but you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness
greatness is a decision available to everyone

greatness is largely a matter of conscious choice and discipline

Greatness is birthed through hardship and testing. It arises choice by choice

Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness is a matter of conscious choice and discipline

Dear Camille… This Thanksgiving Will Be Different

15095623_743169127280_2957726461820780242_n

Dear Camille,

It’s been a very long time since I have written you and before I tell you why this will be a better Thanksgiving, I have to update you on all your milestones. I have been keeping myself busy so that you can have an even better Thanksgiving this year than you did last year. The last time I wrote you was just after your first Christmas and A LOT has changed since then. Sorry it has been so long. You’ve been RUNNING everywhere and have picked up a ton of words such as shoes (“ishes” as you like to call them), Jesus, Momma, Papa, Nana, bar, ball, bottle, cookie, cheese, chicken, brother (“bruba”), no, woof, puppy, and many more. You also know where your hair, eyes, nose, toes, ears, mouth, belly button, and hands are! You are so smart!!!

You’ve been climbing on EVERYTHING and love being around your brother. In fact, you can’t even walk by him without hugging him and kissing him on the head. It’s one of the sweetest things we’ve ever seen. He smiles more for you than he does for anyone and yesterday he just made his first real laugh. He’s super happy in general, but by far the happiest when he’s around you.

So let me tell you why this Thanksgiving will be different. A few years ago, before you were even born, I knew that I wanted to give your mom the opportunity to be home with you all the time. I knew that before I even knew your mom. So I removed all excuses and went to work so that when I met your mom she could have that opportunity. I was able to make that happen in a short amount of time and I thought that if I could accomplish that goal then all would be good; however, after you were born something changed. I still wanted your mom home with you, but that wasn’t going to be good enough for my little girl. You deserved much more than to just have your mom home with you.

Every day as I would leave to go to my job I would kiss you goodbye probably 50 times and you would smile. Then when you could stand up you would stand in the window of the door crying and screaming “Daddy!” every day as I left. It broke my heart to leave you every day. There were many mornings when I had to fight back tears backing out of the driveway and some mornings when I lost that fight. Then throughout the day I would watch you grow up through pictures or videos that your mom would send me while I was at work and it would tear me up even more. I would have the hour after I got home from work to spend with you and the majority of that was feeding you, bathing you, and then putting you to bed. It wasn’t enough for you and it wasn’t enough for me.

Then when your brother was born I took 12 weeks off of work and it hit me. Why not just always be home with your mom and the two of you? After talking it over with your mom we have decided that we would both be home to raise you and your brother and that is why this Thanksgiving will be better than the last. So instead of just enjoying the holiday weekend and then going back to a job on Monday only to see you cry in the doorway, I will wake up Monday to get you out of bed, hug you, kiss you, feed you breakfast, take you to the park or even chase you around the house because I can. I no longer have anyone telling me that I have to come into work from 8:00 to 5:00. I no longer have to ask off for vacation to take you to fun trips around the country. I have fired the boss and given up the 40 hour work week so that now we can always be on vacation my little love! We no longer live life on someone else’s terms. We live life on our own terms. Happy Thanksgiving Sweetheart!

I love you,

“Dada”

Snickerdoodle & Oreo Protein Cookies

14581542_738488666960_2317237715070349502_n
Last night I decided to make Snickerdoodle Protein Cookies with the brand new seasonal Snickerdoodle Meal Replacement Shakes using our friend Brandi’s AdvoOreo recipe! They are so quick and easy AND DELICIOUS!

First of all these are seasonal shakes as well as the Caramel Macchiato and Pumpkin Spice shakes. So if you want some of these you better get them while they last because once they are gone they are GONE!

What’s Needed:

  • 1 cup almond flour or 1 cup of raw almonds made into almond flour in a food processor
  • 2 Packets of Snickerdoodle Meal Replacement Shakes
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup (or raw honey)
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL: “Enjoy Life” Chocolate Morsels

Combine dry ingredients, then add wet ingredients; mix well. Dough will be sticky but drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet, then form into what looks like a cookie. They will spread just a little tiny bit while baking, but they won’t rise, so don’t make them too thin or too thick.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 mins (NOTE: Place oven racks closer to the upper middle of the oven).

If you would like to make the Snickerdoodle Oreo filling then while baking, prepare the filling in a separate bowl:

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 packet of Vanilla Meal Replacement Shake
  • 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL: “Enjoy Life” Chocolate Morsels

Combine ingredients in a small container, refrigerate until cookies are cooled. This will thicken while you wait.

Once the cookies have baked, spread the filling on one of them then top it off with another.

Great tasting hint: If you leave them in the fridge over night they taste even better!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

FOR MORE AWESOME RECIPES:

pinterest2

Monday Motivational Shorts… “Make Time”

Charles-Buxton-Quote-You-will-never-find-time-for-anything-If-you
When I share an incredible opportunity with people the most common objection I hear is, “I don’t have time.” I said the same thing when someone introduced the same opportunity to me 3 1/2 years ago. At that point in my life I was working 18 hours a day (4:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.). I “didn’t have time” for anything else. The truth is, you’ll never “find” time to do anything, but you can always “make” time for things that matter. People make time to watch their favorite t.v. shows, they make time to go out with friends, they make time to go get a few drinks, they make time to fool around on social media for hours throughout the day, etc. There are 24 hours in the day. You’re sleeping only 6-8 of them. Make the time to do things that matter. If I didn’t make time to do things that mattered 3 1/2 years ago then our family would be burdened with daycare costs, hardly ever get to see our child, we would have an unreal amount of debt, and be living with financial stress month after month. I know that life sounds familiar to the majority of Americans and may even be considered “normal” by today’s standards. Instead, my wife has the opportunity to raise our child, we’ve eliminated over $170,000 of debt, and we don’t stress when the bills come around every month or when we have a “surprise cost” when something breaks. Our goal is to make the “normal” type of life a rarity or non-existent for as many people as possible. ‪#‎thankyouadvocare‬ ‪#‎whowantstobenormal‬ ‪#‎maketime‬

24 hours in a day make time

If Nothing Changes…

If nothing changes nothing changes

Have you ever noticed people (family, friends, co-workers) complain about their circumstances, but they keep living the same old routine day after day? They don’t change anything. They wake up, go to work, come home, eat, watch T.V., go to bed, etc. in hopes that someday and somehow their life will just get better. I have news for those people… it won’t. The hard truth is… if nothing changes then nothing changes.

Are you one of those people stuck in the hamster wheel of life? The never ending rut where you find yourself constantly saying “next month we’ll be doing better” and then something else comes up?

Ask yourself this question… are you okay if nothing changes?

Are you okay if nothing changes?

If you answered “yes” to that question then ask yourself the following…

If you lost your job, would you still be okay? If not, wouldn’t you think it would be wise to have a “Plan B” income even to give you peace of mind?

Is your marriage the best it can be? Are you the best spouse you can be? If not, why don’t you look into ways to improve your marriage? (Marriage conferences, read books on marriage – “The 5 Love Languages” would be a good start, or hang out with couples who’s marriage you would like to emulate)

Are you the best parent you can be for your children? Children spell “love” T-I-M-E. Do you give them enough of it or just what’s left over at the end of the day?

richard branson if someone offers you an amazing opportunityFor things to change, you must change. Nothing is going to change by you “going through the motions” day in and day out. I know because I lived that life. At 32 years of age I was working 18 hours a day trading hours for dollars because there was always too much month at the end of the money. My student loan payments were crippling. Instead of hoping that the government would come to my rescue and bail me out by forgiving my loans, I took personal responsibility for making the choice to borrow the money in the first place, which meant I had to work a second job. Then I lived that 18 hour a day life for years until my friend introduced me to AdvoCare. In the past 3 1/2 years, AdvoCare has helped us eliminate a personal loan, three student loans, and five nearly maxed out credit cards. It’s given us the option to allow my wife to stay home and raise our children. It allows us to have more money to give to causes dear to our heart. It gives us peace of mind that we never even dreamed of until we were surrounded by the culture and the people involved with AdvoCare.

If you don’t have a plan to give you more time with your family, eliminate your debt, or a Plan B income to take care of your family if you lose your job then it’s time to make some changes. If not AdvoCare then what’s your plan? If not AdvoCare then that’s okay… just do SOMETHING to better your situation.

 

 

Protein Pancakes With ONLY 3 Ingredients

AdvoCare meal replacement shake protein pancakesI’m not the cook in our family. My wife takes the cake on that one. See what I did there? 😉 I can; however, cook up a few healthy easy-to-make things in the kitchen. One in particular is protein pancakes that I’ve had multiple times in the past couple weeks. They’re simple, quick, and don’t leave much of a mess at all. Here’s the “whatcha need” and the “how to”:

INGREDIENTS:

  1. One AdvoCare Meal Replacement Shake (any flavor)
  2. An egg
  3. Two Tablespoons of Water

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a small bowl, pour in your AdvoCare meal replacement shake, your egg, and your two tablespoons of water.
  2. Mix well.
  3. Pour into your cooking pan.
  4. Cook to desired golden or browness! 🙂

That’s it! Really… it’s that easy! Here’s a video of me making them this morning:

FOR MORE AWESOME RECIPES:

pinterest2

Dear Camille, Your First Christmas…

Dear Camille,

Your first Christmas was AWESOME! It was great for many reasons and one is because on Christmas day you turned NINE MONTHS old! We can’t believe how fast you’re growing. It’s so neat to see you learn and watch you think. If there is a way to pause you at this age just a little bit longer I’m going to do it. Everything is going by too fast. So it’s been bittersweet.

We put the Christmas decorations up right after Thanksgiving and because you can crawl now your mom and I thought you’d be pulling all of the low hanging ornaments off of the tree. To our surprise we made it all the way through Christmas without that happening AND THEN you suddenly became very interested in the glass ones. I must say, determination must run in the genes because you sure have it girl. There was nothing mommy could do to keep you from the gold ornaments. Just look at your determination!535346_702131521970_2497673959976117419_n
10590566_702131546920_6977066931582462751_n16611_702131472070_2434020600023626517_n

You were given a lot of cool gifts including a little nativity scene, which you apparently thought was a nativity snack since all you did was chew all the pieces. Gram and Papa gave you pajamas that you’ve already worn multiple times. Nonnie and Papa got you some books, which you’ve also turned into snacks and plenty of toys (I’m sure to chew on as well). Your mom and I got you the best gift of all though! While Uncle Ryan was FaceTiming Gram and Papa so they could see you open your pajamas, we gave you a pajama shirt that we kept secret from everyone else. It said, “The Best big Sister.” That’s right, your mom and I gave you the gift of a baby brother or sister! 🙂 We are not sure when you are going to find out because your mom and I are in a debate as to whether we should find out early or when your baby sibling is born. I want to wait, but your mom can’t keep secrets from herself. So who knows when we’ll find out. I’ll tell mom that you said you’re on #teamwait with daddy. 🙂

12391059_701321041180_6692036232728878235_n

We also went to your great grandmother’s house for Christmas dinner and you got to see the most Christmas bows you may ever see in your life. There had to be several hundred of them! We took a tour of the house and you got to see all of the decorations and pictures of when daddy, Uncle Ryan, Aunt Emily, and Nonnie and Papa were little. We also were reminded of how great of a man your great grandfather was. I wish you had a chance to meet him and I really wish he had a chance to meet you. I took a picture of when President Reagan wrote him a letter for some jeans he sent someone on the President’s behalf. Your dad’s family used to own a clothing company that your great-great-grandfather started all on his own. Did you know that you come from a long line of hard working successful entrepreneurs? Well, you do. Maybe that’s why daddy always knew he’d start his own business. The best part is, mom and I get to build our business together and we do that by helping other people. 🙂 You’ll get to be a part of it soon my love… in 17 years and 2 months. 🙂 Can’t wait for you to read all these letters! We need to teach you how to read soon!!!

1913788_701367024030_8718832195705928646_n

 

Love,

Dad