Hands On

There’s something to be said for a man who can actually do stuff. (Yes, I understand women can also do things and take care of themselves, as I most definitely can, but that’s not the point here.) The point is men have changed. How many of you have a man in your life who can actually do practical, useful things? Fix things, make things, use his hands for more than scrolling through his phone? I live in a small town in the south, so I feel like it’s more common here in a farming community than it is in the larger town I grew up in. But even here, it’s becoming less and less common. Like everything else, men are evolving with the times and technology. I get that. But it makes me even prouder of the man I call mine and the little man we are raising that seems to be following in his footsteps.

I sat for about two hours today watching my husband and his friend work in their shop. It constantly amazes me to see the things these two dudes can do. I give them hell on a daily basis, but I swear between the two of them, they’re unstoppable. Today they were working on trucks for a truck pull this weekend. One was attaching a custom made bumper, which he made from scratch I might add, to his truck. The other was working on various projects on his truck, while occasionally stopping to help his friend. These two never slow down. They are constantly thinking of something else to do to whatever project they’re working on and then figuring out how to make it happen. They drive their wives crazy on a regular basis with truck talk, late hours in the shop, and mysterious charges to their credit card, but it’s hard to hate it. We also never have to call a repairman or take our vehicles to the shop. After close to eighteen years, I’m spoiled to it. I can do a lot of things myself, but how awesome is it that I don’t have to every single time?

As I sat there watching my 5-year-old work diligently to split a wood block while the big boys worked on their trucks, I couldn’t help but be relieved that he seems to have the inclination to do things with his hands. Yes, more times than not that means destroying something, but still… at least he tries. He came home yesterday hot, tired, covered in grease and dirt, and happy as a clam, much like his daddy. Hopefully he will always know the satisfaction of being able to do things with his hands.

Resolve to Evolve

I’m not a big resolution person. Mainly because I know myself well enough to know I won’t follow through if I don’t want to, regardless of what I decide at the new year. However, the past few weeks I’ve thought about the new year a lot. Maybe it’s because I will turn 40 and I’m having some sort of mid-life crisis. Hard to say for sure, but I’m at a point in my life where I feel like I should reassess where I am, where I want to go, and how I plan to get there.

2018 has brought me a new venture that I love and as a bonus, has helped me reduce the chemicals in my house which has led to a healthier family. Really. It’s weird, but true. It has also given me the freedom to take days off and spend it with my kid, as opposed to worrying non-stop about deciding between him and my job. Young Living really has changed my life and I love sharing it. With the holidays, I have taken it easy on that front, focusing more on creating products I love. It is such a stress reliever to make things, especially things I use daily. I feel like I’m actually accomplishing something I can measure and see, which is uncommon for me these days. And I’ve been able to share that with a lot of people, which is nerve wracking for me, but has given me a lot of satisfaction, too. It has reminded me that there is more to me than the day to day people see. And it really makes me happy. Like “singing in the kitchen” happy. I find myself making stuff just for the sake of making it, because I can see it in my head and I have to do it and see how it turns out. I assume that’s how musicians and other artists feel, but being neither of those it’s new for me.

Back to the point – this year I’m thinking hard about change in the new year. I hate change. Have for as long as I can remember. I get physically ill and try to sleep my life away. Which brings me back to that whole mid-life crisis possibility. Whatever it is, I’m hoping to make some changes in 2019. Because regardless of how old I sometimes feel, I’m not dead yet. I’ve talked to and read stories of tons of people who make some change mid-life and go on to truly enjoy the rest of their life. I want to be one of those people. I don’t have any crazy “move to Mexico” plans, just a drive to really do some of the things my husband and I have talked about for years. Six months ago I never would have had the courage to even consider a change. But I found this company full of amazing people doing amazing things and it helped me dream again. It’s scary as hell, yet totally irresistible. And I can’t wait.

Oils of Our Lives

I’m at a weird point. I’m doing something I really enjoy. Weird. Taking a hobby I’ve had for years and sharing it with a lot of people. Also weird. More people than I ever expected in a few short weeks. I find myself randomly recommending oils in conversation. Which is not me. Then there’s the whole “selling” thing. That is also not me. It’s like I’m a different person. I find myself struggling to balance my desire to share with my need to give people space and not pressure them in any way. Because even when they’re interested in what you have to say, there’s this suspicion that you’re going to trap them into something or force them to sell oils against their will. Or that’s how it feels from my end. I was wary too, so I get that. And let’s be real, you can wrap it up in whatever package you want to, but at the end of the day I do want you to use Young Living and it does benefit me. But whether you know it now or not, it benefits you, too.

The thing is I genuinely like helping people find a solution through oils. And they have other things, people. It’s more than oil. I love knowing that it’s the beginning of something that’s not only good for them, it’s fun. And I love the thought of sharing and talking about oils for enough of a living that I can get more serious with my cattle business. Cows require time and effort and I have neither after working full time.

I also know that there is no trap. I like to think that people know me well enough to know I wouldn’t get talked into anything I hadn’t researched and asked a ton of questions about. And as usual, I had lots of questions. I probably went through everything on the website looking for the catch. I never found it. All I found was a really cool concept that had spread worldwide. And I am confident in the knowledge that if I wake up tomorrow and think, “What was I thinking?”, I can make one phone call to an impartial person and I’ll be done. All the rebates and discounts are not coersion. They are only meant to get oils to more people. Really. And the membership that turns so many people off? Do you have a Sam’s Club membership? Do you pay a set amount each year and get the discount as a result? Do they use the word “membership”? Yeah, that’s my point.

Yes, at the end of the day it is a business for me. It’s a stupid, ridiculous dream, but I’m taking the chance anyway. Because I need a change and inspiration. But if I didn’t like it and believe it could help people, I wouldn’t be doing it. Period.

So the weird place is how do I balance that? I’m having a blast blogging and sharing my experiences with essential oils. That’s a fact. Had I known it would make me happy, I would have started this years ago. But at the end of the day, I do have a goal. I want to work less in an office and more on things I enjoy. I want other people to have that opportunity if they want it. It doesn’t appeal to everyone. I didn’t think it would appeal to me. And I despise being pressured or coerced, so I’m not going to do that for any amount of money. Well, maybe a million per head. That would be hard to turn down. But when you realize you enjoy something and could possibly get financial freedom, you take the chance. And even though I know the business part freaks people out, I do want people to know it’s out there and it’s a lot of fun.

So that’s where I am. I love it. I love sharing it. I hope you love it, too, and let me show you how to get awesome oils at a discounted price. But if you don’t want to, I’m good with that. You can order one at a time or none at all. It’s not for everyone and that’s ok. Please do not let the “sales” and “membership” keep you from trying something new if you want to. Be brave. Have a little faith in me. But most of all, take a tip from me and be true to you. That’s all I’m trying to do.

A Teacher I Am Not

Never in a million years would I have guessed that I would like teaching.  I hate talking in front of people.  I almost failed speech in college.  I literally want to vomit just remembering that class.  And no one cares what I think anyway.  But here I am, sharing and teaching about Young Living and essential oils and I’m loving it.  I feel like I’m doing something I enjoy and it helps people.  Win win.

I have always been shy or that’s how I remember it.  People scoff at that now, but they didn’t know me in my younger years.  I have always preferred to work in the background and if possible, be invisible.  Until I went to college, I’m not sure I had actual opinions of my own.  My mom still says people tell her they didn’t know she even had a daughter.  They know my heathen brothers (love you!), but not me.  I was very good at blending in.

College changed all that.  I came out of my shell with a monstrous bang and never looked back.  Now I have opinions.  Lots of them.  And I don’t care to share them with anyone who gets too close.

But back to the subject at hand.  I love to learn.  Or more specifically I love to learn what I want to know.  Some things just fascinate me.  Essential oils is one of those things.  There is so much potential there.  So much left to discover.  Even after hundreds, and possibly thousands, of years, we are still learning their potential.  How cool is that?  And there are so many people benefiting from these oils already.  I have a lot of weird health issues myself,  so I’m continually looking for something to help me personally.  Because contrary to popular belief, doctors don’t know everything.  I’ve been to enough specialists personally to know that for a fact.

But I’m no teacher.  I don’t have a plan or a formal education.  I definitely don’t have the right attitude most days.  Some days I don’t even want to see another person.  I’m not always socially appropriate, nor do I care.  I am notoriously honest about what I think.  Sometimes tactfully, sometimes not so much.  I’m just me.  All I have is love and curiosity for the subject matter and the ability to share that.  I’m so hopeful that somewhere out there someone benefits from all of this.

I jokingly (mostly) tell people I’m probably having a midlife crisis.  I will be 40 next April.  Even my husband of 12 years finds the current me suprising.  He says I’m evolving every day.  He knows I struggle to find things I truly enjoy.  It’s funny because I told him within the last few weeks that I have no hobbies anymore.  Somewhere along the way, I lost me.  I have nothing to take me away from real life for a few minutes.   I work all day, come home to a very demanding 4 year old, and sleep.  I guess God heard that complaint/request and for once, answered quickly.

Honestly, I’m still not sure how got here – blogging and sharing on Facebook.   It just happened one day.  I feel like a big part of my daily job is to help people learn new things, so it came pretty naturally to do the same with oils.  I never thought talking to people would be fun for me.  But it really is.  It may be a fluke that quickly passes, but for now I’m enjoying the journey.

A Better Me (and You)

The past few weeks have been so much fun for me.  I set a goal to be a better me and to make better decisions for my family.  And I decided I wanted to share what I was learning, so I started a Facebook page (facebook.com/katiesoilyjourney) and a blog.  Feel free to look me up – I love sharing.

I’ve used essential oils for several years.  As a skeptical person, I continually look for stories of success and research oils for myself.  I don’t blindly believe things, but I will take your suggestions and try it for myself.  Oils were a road to stress relief for me and mine.  My main goal was a calmer home life.  When my mother-in-law began using Young Living this year, I was reintroduced to them through her.  I knew of the company and I guess most people do.  I even had a few bottles I used from time to time.  I also knew I was buying less expensive oils that were already helping me.  But me being me, I started reading about the company.  About how they grow, harvest and develop new blends.  About their mission to get essential oils into every house.  I read stories on Pinterest and on the internet as a whole.  My mother-in-law and I went to a meeting with about 50 super happy people who were using and selling it.   Happy people make me suspicious, so that was kind of a turnoff for me at the time.  Which is pretty funny now.

I got my starter kit a month or so ago and started experimenting.  The scientist in me loves to test things. I compared the YL oils to the ones I had already.  I can honestly say they are more intense than my less expensive oils.  I can use less drops and I trust that what I am getting is 100% oil that has been tested in a lab to verify that.  And YL hires third-parties to audit their products also, which I love.  Their farms, methods, and quality control is impressive.   I’ve since learned that there is no regulation of essential oils in regards to what is considered “100%” and “pure.”  As long as approximately 10% is oil, it can be advertised as 100% on the label.  But when you use YL, you know it has been tested and verified.  And YL is the only company that owns all of their own farms, which specialize in whatever will grow the best in that particular environment.  Their farmers have strict regulations from the company and their products are checked to insure they follow them.  And they don’t just sell oils, they sell all kinds of things: cleaners, shampoos, makeup, and the list goes on.  You should really check out their website.  Overall, it’s impressive and I feel comfortable using them on my family and sharing that with others.

And my husband is a very willing participant.  I’ve mixed things for sore muscles and joints, calming oils, and bug spray.  He uses them all.  I made my son a booboo roller and a calming roller and he likes to use those himself (he is four).  It’s funny how easily they accepted it all.  Easier than I did, I’m sure.

I never, and I mean NEVER, planned to try the business side.  I despise selling anything.  And I hate salesmen.   Three weeks ago that wasn’t even on my radar.  Then my buddy mentioned looking into it and we jumped in together.  I have loved every minute.  Because I’m not selling, I’m sharing.  Young Living sells things, not me.  And I love reading and sharing what I find.  I love answering questions. It’s one of the reasons I like my actual daily job.  I know most people don’t get a kick out of researching and experimenting,  but I do.  And I feel happy and productive for the first time in a very long time.  So I hope that I can keep on posting and sharing my journey and other people can benefit from it.  It’s going to be a lot of fun along the way.  You should really come with me!!

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The name

I swear my husband asks me the name of this site just so he can laugh at me repeatedly.  I get it.  The name is odd.  What is it about the word “oily” that sounds so…well, risqué and/or literally dirty?  What I’m going to share on this page is waaaayyy left field from that.  I’m sorry if you got here hoping for something else.  Keep searching, my friend.

What literally started out four days ago as a goal to share my somewhat limited, but always expanding, knowledge of essential oils with friends on Facebook, reminded me how much I like to write.  I am continually told I should be writing my family antics down, mainly because most days I feel like I live in some weird reality show where things keep going off course.  I rarely walk in to work without someone saying, “Well…how’s it going today?”, with that hopeful look on their face.  They know if I have a story, it’ll be a good one.  Between the dogs, my son and my own clumsiness, I’m a wealth of stories waiting to happen.  So the name started out as just something I threw out there because I needed anything as a name for my Facebook page.  Straight and to the point: me, what I want to talk about, and how I got there.  Then after I shared a few posts about my experiences, I realized I wanted do something more.  Something where I can say more, even if it’s just out into the universe.

Trust me, this isn’t a blog about essential oils.  Essential oils are a compliment to the life I’m leading.  They are  becoming a natural part of what I am striving for – peace, calm and fulfillment.  So yes, I will talk about my experiences with oils and yes, if you are interested in knowing more, I’m your girl.  But my journey is so much more than that.  My life is a bowl of weirdness most days, if I do say so myself.  And I want to share that with you.  Because honestly it will probably make you feel better about your own circumstances or at least give you a good laugh.  I want to share the highs and the daily inspirations, but also the lows and times I thought the pain would never end.  All the days I still struggle.  All the climbing out of holes to fall back in.  All the reaching a goal, tripping and sliding back down to reality.  All the missteps.  All the laughs along the way. That’s what I want to share with you.  I’m hoping that this odd name will lead someone to my journey…hopefully not for what my husband is betting on.  I’m hoping my stories will speak to your situation.  And I’m hoping the whole thing will be therapeutic for me, because let’s face it:  the only good thing to come out of my crazy life is that I can educate and inspire other people and that, my friends, eases my soul.

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