Oil Of Joy: December 2015


Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2016 THM Accountability and Challenge Group! JOIN ME!!

We are almost there!! The beginning of 2016!

Have you heard? I started an unofficial THM Accountability and challenge group? 
What will that look like??

We will have a WEEKLY challenge! 

Daily meal check ins!

Share our workouts!

Encouragement and friendship!


Join us as we begin the year off right! Rededicating our health journey or perhaps you are just starting out! We have a variety of ladies joining us, new and seasoned!

I am looking to regaining my weight loss goals and most of all, I am so excited to share this journey with others!!

You can find this group on facebook HERE!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Made with Love

I wanted to share a little more of my heart with you all today.

Something I noticed happening over this year was with all the craziness as mentioned in my previous post, was that cooking became a burden. It was just a chore I begrudgingly did because we needed to eat. I made THM treats so I could do my best to try to stay on plan, but it had lost it's joy.

Prior to my THM lifestyle change, I LOVED to bake. It was one of my love languages to my family. I would make fresh bread for my families sandwiches, breakfasts etc. Cinnamon rolls, cookies, cakes, muffins. I truly enjoyed making yummy foods for my family and I truly did it with love. Something therapeutic for me to feel the dough in my hands...my brain knows the food is done before the timer goes off....then watching their faces.....I love it all.

Then THM came in to my life. With my food intolerances I realized baking was going to be a huge learning curve now and I was really missing this area of my love language for my family. So, I dug in and played and experimented and guess what happened? Oil of Joy, my blog was born! I was having success, my family was enjoying my baked treats again and again I was making delicious things with love...and excitement!

Fast forward to 2015, such a hard year. I was in survival mode, which was appropriate for the time. I had to do what I needed to make it all work, and by the grace of God I did. But I am not there anymore. I am now free to enjoy making things with love once again, but I have realized that I am not. I am still making things because I have to, until this week. One evening this week I was just sitting and reflecting on the jobs that needed to get done around the house, making food was on that "job" list.

I wondered how it had become a job and not a love anymore, I realized that along the hard journey of this year, I had let that go but I want to reclaim it.

I want to encourage you (and me) to find the love of cooking and baking for your family, to spend the time not as a chore, but as an act of worship to the Lord, as an act of Love for your family and for yourself. When I make/bake THM foods for my family now, I know not only are they going to be satisfied by delicious flavors and happy tummies, but I am also nourishing their bodies. I also love and am so thankful I can be a full time mom. It's been a joy to be home with my children for these past 20 years! It's also so easy to feel like these daily tasks are meaningless, to not take pride in them or to just get them over with. However, I want to remind myself, I love to cook and bake. I love the creativity involved, the joy on their faces and the delicious sounds they make as they devour my latest creation.

Last night, before bed I was feeling inspired again, ready to enjoy the creative art of cooking and baking. I decided instead of just finding something to eat for breakfast, I would get up and create something delicious! I did.....I played with my S scone recipe and made cranberry orange scones with a protein london fog tea. It felt GREAT to enjoy the time in the kitchen, playing with ingredients, coming up with ideas. The house felt warm and the air smelled heavenly as they baked. Food really is one of my love languages, I am glad to have learned it in such a way as to heal and not harm my family.

Now it is time to start remembering why I cook and bake for my family. So it can be Made with Love.

With joy ~ Tina

PS - you can find that new addition to my scone recipe in the link above, I have added it as a variation to my original blueberry.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Trying again...an update in my THM Journey

I have thought a while about sharing this particular part of my journey, but I decided I wanted to share it for anyone else who has fallen but is getting back up to try again.

Sometimes I feel like I have not really fallen off the THM wagon, but rather I was drug along the side of it, bumping and scraping all the way. I am always on THM, I may have a few bad days or some off plan meals, but I am never fully "off plan". I don't think I could ever go back to my previous way of eating, it's made that much of a difference in my life. You can read my original story HERE. 

For those of you who have followed along on my blog, you may have noticed we have had a very hard year in our home. In the spring of this year my husband was diagnosed with MRSA in the bursa sack of his elbow. It was a very, very (stress VERY) hard time. He had to go on a series of antibiotics administered multiple times a day through a line installed in his arm. We are eternally thankful and give glory to God that he is 1. HEALED and 2. he only missed a total of one and a half weeks of work through that horrible ordeal . (We don't have sick time, so any time off is just lost money and I am a full time mom, so it makes an impact.) God was there. My husband ended up having a severe reaction to his antibiotics and was hospitalized for a day. While I share our hardships let me just say, I was gifted essential oils through a dear friends mother to help my husband through this time. We had friends praying for us as well. I am so very thankful for praying family and friends. To sum this story up, my husband has now recently had a follow up MRI to check if he needed surgery and he does NOT! So, we are finally finished (as of about a month ago) with that whole situation. Here is a post I did about what I make for my husbands lunches. In that photo he had just recently been diagnosed. That day I was smiling, but inside I was scared.

Shortly after my husbands ordeal my mom got very sick and entered the hospital with a diabetic wound that nearly ended up taking her life because of complications. Her story is found HERE and HERE. I then spent the remainder of this summer managing her care. Spending days at the hospital, then organizing in home caretakers, meals, grocery shopping, doctors appointments etc etc etc. I did this in addition to taking care of my own family and home. I am again, so thankful and praise God for saving her life, for healing her and preserving her foot and leg and giving her the ability to live again. She is continuing to improve every day.

I share all of this not to whine, but to get to the point, trying again. Let me share this little tidbit of information so you can see the full scope, one day my daughter and I headed out to finally get a grocery shop trip in, I had been managing our family meals day by day, moment by moment, it was all I could do. When we finally made it out to this particular planned shopping trip, my daughter looks at me and asked me, do you remember the last time we did this? She caught me by surprise, why was that even in her mind...so I told her no, I really couldn't remember. She told me it had been 3 months. Three months since I had meal planned and my family had sat down to a regular meal all together. Three months since I had my kitchen and pantry stocked like it usually is. It may sound silly, but it was quite a shock for me to realize that this one basic thing, had been so neglected for so long.

While I was busy caring for others for so many months this year, I had not been caring for myself. I would do the best I could to stick to plan, but I would have many days of way too many hours between meals or snacks, or too many crossovers or just sometimes I had to eat what I could get my hands on. I would have spurts of really good days and boy could I tell a difference in how I was handling things when I was eating well, but I just didn't have time to plan or bake or cook.

Sadly, although I have not weighed, I am pretty sure I have gained back my weight from where I started on THM. I don't want to weigh yet, it just feels like another burden I cannot bear at this time. Instead, I am focusing on regaining my momentum. I am meal planning, I am baking and cooking and prepping again.

I am trying hard to not look at this as a failure, although sometimes it's hard not to. I run a blog and motivational groups as well as a THM store. Yet, I couldn't hold it all together. I gained weight...I struggle with feeling like I am not the best representation of THM.

What I will say is this, I did NOT return to my old usual coping mechanisms for the most part. I would have looked for junk food during such a stressful season before THM. I now find I would rather have a cake in a mug than a store bought cookie. Skinny chocolate really does sooth a frazzled, teary heart, not just the tummy. I would also say, I have the best tool ever, THM to return to full force and I KNOW it works and I will lose this weight again and I will reflect on this season and hopefully be better prepared when a rough season is thrust upon me again. (Let's all hope and pray that is not for a VERY long time, ok?) So, I am trying again. I will be on THM for life, I already know that, I just hope I will spend that time maintaining in the future rather than trying to lose weight I have already lost before. I hope as I encourage others, I will also be encouraged and motivated and excited.

Have you ever fallen off the THM bandwagon? Are you also looking for motivation. I would love to invite you to join me in my Facebook Accountability and challenge group. I will cheer you on and you can cheer me on!

Thanks for reading, I hope my story helps you get back on plan if you have veered off the path. <3

With joy ~ Tina

Thursday, December 10, 2015

THM Accountability and Challenge Group!


Hi ladies! I am just so excited! I decided to start a Trim Healthy Mama (unofficial) Accountability and Challenge Group!

What is it going to be like? Well, we will kick off officially on January 1, 2016. That's a Friday ladies, yes, are starting on a Friday and not waiting until the usual Monday start day!

Each week I will offer up a challenge for us all! On Sundays I will post a meme indicating our challenge and within that thread how we are all doing that week! I will be mixing it up each week and I have already written up the first 6 months of weekly challenges!

I will also post a daily meme where we can check in, offer encouragement and keep each other updated on how our journey is going.

I have already decided to start a pre challenge mini challenge - we will be doing a 4 day NO CHEAT challenge. December 20, 21, 22 and 23rd! A great way to kick some of that sugar out of our system and set our minds on our lifestyle and how GREAT we feel when we stick to the plan!

If you would like to join this group you can find it here:

You can also click on the accountability group picture above, it's linked too!

I am just so excited to get this kicked off! I am already encouraged just by planning our weekly challenges and watching you all join and share your stories and excitement!

If you need to stock up on THM items, you can order through me privately or you can shop through my THM store located here. Thank you for any purchases made through my affiliate link below! They help support my blog habit and bringing you yummy egg free creations! <3


If you are in need of the books they an be found here:

Thanks ladies! I am really looking forward to a happy, healthy new year!

With Joy ~ Tina