Wednesday, September 23, 2015

"Mindfully Eating with Purpose!" By: Mary Jean Marquez

My Health Journey that lead to a Vegetarian Lifestyle
By: Mary Jean Marquez
Society is drastically changing in the way we think about food, health and animal welfare.  My own journey has been interesting, and I suppose similar to many of you.  What started as a quest for better health, has lead to my passion of helping all animals.

I was raised a meat eater.  Every single day we ate some kind of meat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner along with some sort of side loaded with cheese, gravy, and very little or no vegetables and never fruits.  Meat was just the main food on our plates and in my
Hispanic culture every type of meat-food, even beans were fried in LARD!  As an adult, my heart was not liking the years of consuming the overload of fatty meats...and the scary thing is, I had no idea my heart was in trouble!  I was 50 lbs overweight and my body was feeling those extra pounds.

I had a wake up call when my only brother suddenly died of a heart attack when he was a young 46 years of age in 2011.  He and I were only one year and four months apart. 

When I was 48 years of age, shortly after my brother died,  I strongly felt in my heart that I needed to go in to see my doctor for a physical.  I was very surprised to find out that my cholesterol levels were "dangerously high" as my doctor phrased it.  She wanted to immediately start me on a regime of cholesterol medication and some others, but being the stubborn person that I am, and not wanting to get addicted to medications and more afraid of the deadly side affects, I convinced my doctor to give me a chance to try to get my cholesterol levels under control with diet and exercise.  Thank God she did give me that chance.  She gave me a certain amount of time to do it, and I happily share that I did, and I do not have to take medications.  I buckled down and got it done!  I am now (at time of this blog writing) 51 years of age and feeling better than ever in every way!

The first thing I did was prayerfully educate myself on coronary disease, foods...and was lead to a wonderful book titled "Eat To Live" by Joel Fuhrman, M.D.  I devoured this book, and realized that I needed to make serious changes in the way I thought about food, and my eating habits.  I had to throw out all the lies-old information, and renew my mind to new information-truth.  I now "mindfully eat with purpose!" I have a renewed commitment to myself and family to live a longer and healthier lifestyle while helping God's animals and environment.  I have totally revamped the way I eat and lifestyle.  I no longer eat any type of meat, rarely eat eggs or cheese, and cut out all fast foods!  

I also started drinking a lot more water daily, which helps with your entire body.  I never had a problem with drinking sodas, sweet drinks...I always drank water with my meals or when thirsty, but I was not drinking nearly enough.  I encourage you energy drink/soda...drinkers to cut it out, and replace all that poison with pure clean water!  You will be happy you did in the long run! 
There are three lies about food that I want to focus on, because these are the lies I believed and were making my body sick! 

Lie #1:  I was taught and believed that I needed to eat meat to get the proper protein.  That is a blatant lie!   There are so many vegetables and other plant based foods...that you can get your daily protein intake from, plus so many added benefits that you don't get from meat/eggs.   
 
Lie #2:  I was taught and believed that I had to drink milk and eat cheese/diary products everyday to get the proper calcium.  Another blatant lie!  There are plenty of vegetables, fruits...that you can get your calcium from with the added benefits that you don't get with milk/dairy products.   I no longer drink milk, I drink Almond Milk, and rarely eat cheese.  These changes have been vital for my body; many ill symptoms in my body have ceased, especially in my stomach/gut!

Lie #3:  I was taught and believed that I had to eat fish at least twice/three times a week in order to get Omega 3...another blatant lie!  You can get the proper healthy Omega 3 and others by eating flax seed with your foods and or flax seed oil, and other plant based foods...without the unhealthy levels of mercury...from fish.
 
I can go on and on about all I have learned, and the changes I have made, however I encourage everyone reading this blog to please take charge of your own health.  Do your own research and begin to educate yourself, and do what is right for you and future generations. 
 
Another vital change in my lifestyle has been incorporating daily exercise.  Exercise is a must to keep your body strong, and don't let anyone or any quick results gimmick tell you otherwise.  Find what you enjoy and switch it up so it doesn't become monotonous.  

My tip for you is:  Listen to your favorite music and workout outdoors when possible.  Music gets your soul pumped up and ready to go, and the sun/fresh air gives you revitalizing energy!

The bi-product and beauty of my healthy eating habit changes is becoming a part of a rapidly growing group of people who care about, and love animals.  I had no idea of the cruel/inhumane treatment animals suffer, or the inhumane conditions they are forced to live in at the hands of cold hearted people, whose bottom line is the dollar, and not the welfare of the animals they abuse and kill.  This information came as I began to do more research on where my meats-food was coming from. I was shocked and disgusted to say the least, and I simply don't understand how or why the owners and employees...of meat companies-farms/dairies/chickens/fish...are allowed to do so!  It has to stop!

My ultimate goal is to live the Vegan lifestyle, which I am very close to, as I continue to educate myself and learn.  This has been an amazing journey so far, and I am so blessed and excited to share my success with you, and let you know that it is possible to reverse bad health to good health if you do the work, and make the right healthy changes.  I am in the toddler stages of this new lifestyle and have so much more to learn and experience.  I will continue to share my progress, experiences, passion, and compassion with you all. 

Please consider a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle, or simply start by cutting back on eating the amount of any type of meat.  This is how I started my vegetarian/vegan journey.  Not only will you be helping animals from painful/cruel death and abuse, but your health and energy will drastically improve.  You will be amazed at the huge selection of recipes, and the delicious pure flavors you will enjoy with these foods! You can get really creative and allow your culinary self to rise up and create! The one huge change in my body, that I noticed early on, was that my taste buds drastically changed as I retrained them to appreciate natural/wholesome/life giving foods; the way they are supposed to taste.  Everything else, the jacked up foods with chemicals, artificial coloring, frozen drive-thru pre-made fast foods (even big named chain restaurants serve frozen high sodium pre-made foods--Don't be fooled) just don't cut it anymore!  My body and taste buds crave healthy goodness and they know the difference!

I pray this blog will encourage you to make the needed changes that will help your health in every way.  "CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR FIRST" and together you can come up with a good, healthy, and safe plan for you to begin your journey toward a healthier happier lifestyle, while saving precious lives, and making a difference for the environment. 

"One day, and one change at a time!" -Mary Jean Marquez

God bless you always!  

Mary Jean Marquez

www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com

Love and Compassion for Animals on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/loveandcompassionforanimals?ref=bookmarks


 









Wednesday, April 15, 2015

God's Blessings in Plain View - Don't miss them!

God's Blessings in Plain View
Don't miss them!

by:  Mary Jean Marquez


 
I went on my usual four mile power walk this morning, full of high energy and ready to get a good workout while thoroughly enjoying the outdoors, and my Country Music on Pandora.  My neighborhood is amazingly beautiful in farm areas, full of life and color in every way.  The aromas of honey suckle, jasmine and so many other plants/flowers fill the air with sweetness.  I call it my "personal aroma therapy globe".  The sounds of the various birds in the area sing so skillfully, the ducks calmly swimming in the canals, I get to enjoy watching the majestic horses peacefully enjoy their day, and the chickens go about their busy calm ways...So, suffice to say, my walks are truly heavenly!

At one point in my walk there was a gorgeous Monarch Butterfly boldly resting on a wrought iron fence, waving it's beautiful bright colored wings, and peacefully enjoying the warm morning sun without a care.  I almost just passed by without stopping to enjoy that beautiful moment of blessing that God placed in my path, because my mind was thinking on some things happening in this season of my life.   Right as I passed it, I stopped, backed up to stare/marvel at it's beauty, and as I did a peace came over me. I felt as if God placed that blessing in front of me so that I could STOP and FOCUS on His beauty, and presence in my life.  He began to remind me of His goodness and care for me in His Word.  Just as He cares and provides for this beautiful Monarch Butterfly, He cares and provides for me.

As I took that moment to really focus on God and His goodness in my life, all the heavy thinking I was doing disappeared, and replaced with His joy, peace, and a knowing that everything is going to be okay.  God's got my back, and He has yours!

It is easy for us to get so busy and thinking the wrong way, that we miss God's Blessings.  I honestly feel that God places blessings in plain view for us on a daily basis, but we miss them because we are so preoccupied with things that we should be casting upon Him in the first place.

Train yourself to daily, on purpose, look out for God's blessings in your life.  Sometimes He will bless you by placing a beautiful Monarch Butterfly in your path so you can STOP, and FOCUS on God's Word of blessing and hope, letting you know that all is okay, and He has got your back, just like He did for me.

Don't miss your blessings! They are in Plain View everyday!  Be blessing minded!

God bless you always and keep going strong!

Mary Jean Marquez
Founder of Women Uplifting Women
www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com    


Thursday, February 26, 2015

Be Progressive Minded By: Mary Jean Marquez

Be Progressive Minded
By:  Mary Jean Marquez

God is a progressive God and since we are made in His image (Genesis 1:27), we have that creative progressive gusto and energy in us.  Don't allow yourself to stay stagnant in life, no matter what your age or circumstance.  Always keep yourself active in your passions, planning for your next step in achieving your dreams.  Don't put yourself, or allow others, to put you in a contained box that limits your life.  

When you reach those milestones of success, enjoy and celebrate but don't stay there too long.  Make sure you have a plan to start working toward the next success.  So many people are stuck in their past successes talking and living it in their minds as if it happened yesterday.  These people are not progressive minded.  Every success should be a stepping stone to the next one.

If and when you fail, learn from it, get back up and go at it again with a good attitude, with a progressive mind set, and you will be amazed blessed at how God will meet you there.  I always share with people that life to me is like a chess game.  When I make my move, God will in turn make His move! 

Part of living a successful progressive life is embracing the fact that change is inevitable.  Without change it is impossible to move forward.  One great example of that is technology.  Technology is changing on a daily basis, and if we are not flexible to the changes and to learning new information, we will be left behind in a rut of confusion, and in a lost backward state.  We will become detached and unaware of the amazing possibilities that would catapult our lives to the next level.  

Another example, at a more personal level, is marriage/relationships.  It is so easy to stay stuck in old attitudes and ways of doing things, and if allowed to happen, people will naturally grow apart; finding that they no longer have much in common or enjoy each others company.  Most people are instinctively drawn to being progressive in life, and when one of the partners in a marriage or friendship fights change, choosing to stay stagnant in their old ways, while the other is being progressive in their lives, what will happen is one outgrows the other, causing dissatisfaction along with other ill feelings.  Don't let this happen.


Embrace good change and grow with each other! 
Be genuinely happy and encouraging of each others progressive growth!  
Be flexible and open minded! 
Allow each other space when needed!
Enjoy sharing your journeys together while having some FUN along the way!


When you remain progressive minded and doing what is necessary, you will be well able to answer the knock of opportunity when it comes knocking at your door.  Know that your unique life's journey has been preparation for the next progressive step toward your future and you can do ALL things through Christ who is your strength (Philippians 4:13).  

Here is a list to keep in mind on your quest to being progressive minded.  Feel free to add your own.

*  Be progressive in your spiritual growth
*  Be progressive in your mental/personal growth
*  Be progressive in your health/physical
*  Be progressive in your marriage/friendships
*  Be progressive in your home
*  Be progressive in your business
*  Be progressive at your job
*  Be progressive in your finances
*  Be progressive in raising your children
*  Be progressive in your ministry
*  Be progressive in your passion(s) Dream(s)
*  Be progressive in having fun and enjoying life

 
 
Don't take people or time for granted!  

Enjoy life today-Now!

Embrace good change!

Be Progressive Minded in every area of life!



 
Wishing every reader the best life has to offer.  Go for it!

Mary Jean Marquez
Creator and Founder of Women Uplifting Women



www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com 






Thursday, January 29, 2015

Move Your Life Forward by Taking Personal Responsiblity by: Mary Jean Marquez

Move Your Life Forward
by Taking Personal Responsibility
by:  Mary Jean Marquez

 

I share some of my life on this Blog post that is riddled with  "Tough Love" because I care! My desire for everyone reading this is that you would read through humble eyes, hearts, and make the changes necessary to move your life forward.  Sometimes it's hard to admit to wrong behavior and mind sets, but when you recognize, admit and take responsibility for them, you give yourself a chance at a better life.  Denial and stubbornness gets you nowhere!

I realize that sometimes people don't know how to get out of bad habits and wrong thinking after years of living with negative attitudes and thinking, so I would like to share how God helped me.  It's like starting a new job.  I always say people don't know what they don't know, and require proper training or re-training.  Open yourself up to renewing your mind, replacing the old habits and thinking that are getting you nowhere, to a better way that will help move your life forward.  
The following scripture has helped me so much, and I know will help you  "Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."  (Romans 12:2 NIV)

There are too many people out there who are playing the blame game, making excuses and not taking personal responsibility for themselves; resulting in stagnant lives that that are filled with self pity.  This behavior cheats people out of, what could be, amazing lives.  No matter what has happened in your life, know that you can live a happy and successful life.  I don't make light of the fact that people have been through some hard experiences in life, but I also know that God can help people heal and move forward if they desire to, like He did for me.  It's your choice!

I personally got tired of being miserable and playing the blame game.  It got me nowhere except depressed, and hopeless by choice.  When I understood that I had to take responsibility for myself and make major changes in my thinking and behavior/habits, my life began an amazingly beautiful transformation.  I began to seek God like never before and he showed me how to get out of that crazy cycle.  It wasn't overnight, but I remained dedicated and focused on my goals to change myself. 

It took humbling myself and telling God that I didn't know where to begin or what to do, and the following scripture was given to me "If you want to know what God wants you to do, ask him, and he will gladly tell you, for he is always ready to give a bountiful supply of wisdom to all who ask him; he will not resent it. (James 1:5 TLB).  The same goes for you.  Ask God for wisdom and He will begin to show and lead you.  

The first thing God helped me with was learning to forgive.  I was harboring un-forgiveness deep within my heart which had me bound in so many ways; it made me ill.  I did not realize that it had rooted itself within me in the form of hatred and bitterness, causing the manifestation of anger and rage.  God knew that it was imperative for me to deal with the un-forgiveness first so that I could heal and move forward in my life.  When I did forgive those who abused, harmed and abandoned me as a child, I was set free in every area of my life, and I was also able to forgive myself for wrong doing as well and move forward.  My life has been brighter and happier ever since. 

I can safely say that everyone has been wronged/harmed, offended and sinned against in some way and point in life, so I encourage you to please set yourself free and forgive.  Allow yourself to heal and be well! When you extend forgiveness, God will forgive you of your trespasses "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (Matthew 6: 14-15)

Every human being is responsible for His/Her life.  God blesses you with life, and it is up to you to live it the best you know how.  Sometimes life hands you lemons, but you can decide to make sweet lemonade.  Get real with yourself and let go of those things that hold you back.  The following scripture guides you perfectly "Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life." (Galatians 6:5 MSG)

To sum it all up, there comes a time in life when you have to stop making excuses, stop playing the blame game, take responsibility for yourself, no matter what has happened in your life, move forward leaving the past where it belongs, in the past!  Make the decision to get rid of old childish thinking and behaving.  God boldly and clearly instructs you in the following scripture to put away childish living "It’s like this: when I was a child I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child does. But when I became a man my thoughts grew far beyond those of my childhood, and now I have put away the childish things." (1 Corinthians 13:11 TLB)
and
 
I want you to know and realize how amazingly awesome you are. God made you to be more than a conqueror, so rise up, take responsibility for your life, and make things happen.  Make the positive and lasting changes necessary to move forward.  Allow yourself to let go of the past and heal from the inside out.  God bless you always!



 Mary Jean Marquez
Creator and Founder of Women Uplifting Women
www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com
Foundational ScriptureTherefore encourage [admonish, exhort] one another and edify [strengthen and build up] one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11)





Tuesday, January 20, 2015

"Is anything too hard for me?"

"Is anything too hard for me?"
by:  Mary Jean Marquez  

As I prayed this morning for a woman who is a military wife and mother, currently living over seas  struggling with serious health issues, the following question resonated  strongly and sternly within my spirit.  "Is anything too hard for me?"  I immediately stopped and opened my eyes and listened.  I know my God's voice and that was His voice.  It doesn't always happen this way for me in my prayer time, but I get so happy and excited when He speaks to me this way! So, my answer was, "No Father God, nothing is too hard for you!" and by the Stripes of Jesus this woman is healed and made whole in Jesus Name! 

I had to immediately write all of this down as I know this is a word in season for many as well as for myself.  He reminded me of who He is in the lives of His children-our lives.  Thank you my Heavenly Father God! 

What is it that you are facing today that seems overwhelming and out of reach?  

Well, I have to tell you that nothing is too hard for God (Jeremiah 32:27).  He has already paid the price for your full redemption through the precious shed blood of Jesus on the cross.  God is telling you that He loves you so much that He gave His only begotten son so that everyone who believes in Him will have eternal life (John 3:16), and He desires that you prosper, be in health, even as your soul [mind, will, emotions] prospers (3 John 1:2).  That means that He wants you to prosper in every area of life, and has made the provision for it all!  He is your everything!

Healing is yours (Isaiah 53: 5)
Prosperity is yours (Philippians 4:19)
Peace is yours (John 14:27)
Joy is yours (Nehemiah 8:10)
Deliverance is yours (2 Timothy 4:18) 
Power is yours (Luke 10:19)
Love and acceptance is yours (John 3:16)
Faith is yours (Romans 12:3)
Favor is yours (Proverbs 3:4)
and so much more...Search in God's Word!

He has already given you all you need to live happy and healthy in every area of life.  You live under a new covenant of blessing and redemption because of  Jesus sacrifice on the cross.  He died and was risen again just for you.  Believe and receive that redemption and provision.  All of God's promises are yes and amen through Christ Jesus to those who will believe! No promise is too hard for God (2 Corinthians 1:20). 

God says that He is the great "I Am" in your life (Exodus 3).  To help encourage you further, Here are the names of who He is in your life.  Study them and pray them over your life and family.

If you are struggling with health issues, pray "Thank you my Heavenly Father God that you are Jehovah Rapha my healer, therefore I am the healed and made whole of the Lord! In Jesus Name!

If you are struggling financially, pray "Thank you my Heavenly Father God that you are Jehovah Jireh my provider, therefore my every need is met abundantly."  In Jesus Name!

El Shaddai (Lord God Almighty)
El Elyon (The Most High God)
Adonai (Lord Master)
Yahweh (Lord, Jehovah)
Jehovah Nissi (The Lord Your Banner)
Jehovah-Raah ( The Lord Your Shepherd)
Jehovah Rapha (The Lord Your Healer)
Jehovah Shammah (The Lord is There always present in your life)
Jehovah Tsidkenu (Your Righteousness)
Jehovah Mekoddishkem (The Lord Who Sanctifies You)
El Olam (The Everlasting God)
Elohim (God)
Qanna (Zealous of wanting all our praise for Himself and no one else)
Jehovah Jireh (The Lord Will Provide)
Jehovah Shalom (The Lord Your Peace)
Jehovah Sabaoth (The Lord of Hosts)
 ***********************************************************************************
Elohim: "The strong one" God’s sovereignty, creative and mighty work
  • El Shaddai:“God Almighty.” 
  • El Elyon: “The Most High God.” 
  • El Olam: “The Everlasting God.”  unchangeable and inexhaustible
 Yahweh (YHWH):  God of revelation and redemption
  • Yahweh Jireh (Yireh): “The Lord will provide.” 
  • Yahweh Nissi:“The Lord is my Banner.”  the one who fights for His people, our victory.
  • Yahweh Shalom:“The Lord is Peace.” Provision and rest
  • Yahweh Sabbaoth:“The Lord of Hosts.” Commander of the armies of heaven 
  • Yahweh Mekoddishkem: “The Lord your Sanctifier.” 
  • Yahweh Ro’i: “The Lord my Shepherd.” Shepherd who cares for His people
  • Yahweh Tsidkenu: “The Lord our Righteousness.” 
  • Yahweh Shammah: “The Lord is there.” The Lord’s personal presence
  • Yahweh Elohim Israel: “The Lord, the God of Israel.” 
 Adonai: Majesty
Theos: the only true God, unique, transcendent, Savior 
Kurios: Lord, authority and supremacy. 
Despotes: Master, supreme authority 
Father:  God’s loving care, provision, and discipline


I pray that this is a blessing to you and that you would turn to God knowing that nothing is too hard for Him!
 
Meditate on who He is in your life.  He is so ready to help you in your time of need if you will allow Him to (Hebrews 4:16).


God bless you always and remember that God is abundantly on your side!

Mary Jean Marquez
Creator and Founder of Women Uplifting Women
www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com

 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Our Children's Talents and Giftings

Parenting & Children's Unique Gifting(s) and Talent(s)
By Mary Jean Marquez

Every child has his/her unique God given calling, gifting(s) and talent(s).  It is our job as parents to help our children discover and grow in their gifts/talents, and to use them to live happy/productive lives, and for good on this Earth.  Let's not fall into the trap of boxing our children in our own selfish idea of what we want our children to be gifted and talented in.  

I sadly see too many parents trying to control every aspect of their children's lives and the result is, as children grow older they are dissatisfied with their own lives because they are not allowed to discover and live within their unique calling, and parents who are disappointed in their children, feeling like failures as parents.  The truth is, every child is unique and are born with their own unique calling on this Earth, and parents do not have the right to push or manipulate their children into their boxed agenda, or to compare them to siblings or anyone else.

Let's teach our children to love who they are by example.  When we as parents love and accept our children for who God made them to be, in their unique calling, they will in turn have a healthy outlook on life and love who they are; imperfections and all.  Please don't expect perfection from your children!  You are not perfect, so why in the world would you expect your children to be perfect?  Extend forgiveness, Grace and Mercy toward your children, and they will in turn show the same to you and others.   

When our children are young, we are to instill goodness in their lives, teaching them to grow into productive and happy adults.  We are to be on the look out for what stirs their passion, and it takes being present with time and money in getting them involved in different activities in order to discover their gifts/talents.  Some children take longer, while others begin to show signs of their calling early on.   Most people don't discover their calling until adulthood, and that is okay parents!

This photo reminds me of  my daughters uniqueness!
I am blessed with four daughters who are very unique, and who also share a lot in common.  I am so happy that my husband and I learned early on to never compare them to each other or anyone else, and to raise them as individuals in their uniqueness.  They are multifaceted, and we allowed them to explore their interests.  This helped them to understand their unique callings and pursue their passions in life. 

They are thriving in their unique God given gifts/talents; making a difference and enjoying their lives.  My two oldest daughters have partnered in business and successfully run their own restaurant called Papa Pita.  My third daughter is successfully pursuing her passion of acting/modeling in Hollywood.  My youngest is learning, by example, from her three older sisters to go for her dreams, and is discovering some amazing talent in the music arena.  I appreciate each one of them, and thank God for helping me and my husband raise our children to be who He made them to be.

I encourage every parent to seek God for wisdom and knowledge on how to raise and lead each of your children in their uniqueness, and to never push or manipulate them to be something or someone they are not.  Love each child in their unique calling, for who they are, while leading and guiding with love and understanding.  Help them to grow into productive, self-sufficient happy adults who will do the same for their children in the future.

Know that as parents, we are not perfect and will make mistakes.  It is important to humble ourselves and let our children know that we are not perfect, and to ask for forgiveness when we miss the mark and are in the wrong.  We can learn from them as well.  Your children will learn to do the same, and your respect for each other will grow and remain strong for life.

I pray for God's leading in every parents life, as there is no cookie cutter way to be a parent.  What works for one parent does not work for the other, but you can seek God, and He will lead and guide you in the best way to raise your children.  God bless you always!  (Matthew 6:33)




Mary Jean Marquez 


Creator and Founder of Women Uplifting Women

www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Motherhood and Grandmother-hood

Motherhood and Grandmother-hood
By Mary Jean Marquez

I was blessed with my first Grand child on December 14, 2014, and I have to say it has been quite a beautiful experience.  Motherhood has prepared me for the the God given task of being a Grandmother, and I am so up for it.  It is a blessing and honor!

My Four Beautiful Daughters Vanessa, Jessica, Chrysta, & Jenna
I would like to share my experience as a young mother of four daughters, and what I learned that prepared me for my season of being a Grandmother.  I was 24 years of age when I was blessed with my first daughter and 37 years of age when I had my last daughter.  There is approximately 2 1/2 years between the first three and almost ten years between my third and fourth daughter.  My first Granddaughter was born the year I turned 50. 

I had the blessed privilege of raising my children and have no regrets when it comes to being a Mom, but as a young mother it seemed like I was in the diaper and bottle stages forever with very little sleep and trying to keep up with a household, husband who was always out of town, church/volunteering, pets, school.  I had so much on my plate, I had to learn how to say NO to some things.  When my husband and I got to the stage of our three girls being independent and in school...we had our fourth daughter; starting all over again!  This was so hard in many levels, but such a blessing.  I truly feel that for many years I was so wound up trying to do this mother thing right, under so much pressure, I missed out on the full beauty of motherhood, and did not enjoy my children as much in their younger years, but have abundantly made up for it in their older years.    

Grandma Jean and Granddaughter Addison
As a Grandmother, having gone through all of those years raising my daughters, I have learned a few things about myself and parenting.  I am so much more wiser, light hearted, and joyful.  I don't sweat the small stuff like I used to, and I am so much more relaxed and mature in many ways.  My girls and I have so much fun and enjoy each others company.  We have wonderful conversations  and I, with open honesty, share my life experiences with them.  I feel equipped to be a Grandmother and to help my children in their season of motherhood-parenthood.  They don't have to do it alone, as I had to.  Thank God!

My advice to young mothers out there is to relax and enjoy the years that your children are young; these years go by quickly.  Don't put so much pressure on yourself to be perfect, and know that you are a good Mom.

To Grandmothers, Enjoy-Enjoy-Enjoy and seize your second chance at doing it better and wiser with a joyful heart.  Be a blessing to your children and future generations imparting your wisdom and love.

God bless you always and raise your children in the Admonition of the Lord and great will be their peace-Shalom (Isaiah 54:13).

Mary Jean Marquez
Momma Jean & Grandma Jean
Creator & Founder of Women Uplifting Women
www.TheWomenUpliftingWomen.com