We believe family meetings are vital for the overall health of families. They not only set a foundation for a peaceful home but they allow each member of the family to feel valued, including children. It’s a great time for families to practice solving problems and making decisions as a whole. The goal of family meetings is to have each member of the family feel like they matter, their concerns are valid and they are respected. Another goal is making sure things run as smoothly as possible (sometimes easier said than done!) in the home. Dedicating time to keep everyone on the same page is incredibly important is a win as well.
What is a family meeting? Great question! A family meeting is a discussion held as a whole family- meaning all family members are involved. Topics can range from what’s coming up in the week, check-in and concerns to fun things such as an upcoming family trip and recognition.
Tips to get you started:
Extra fun: Let your children control the meeting/go over the agenda at some point. It’s also a great idea to rotate this job, it shows kids they are viewed as responsible, valued and they feel important.
What to talk about in your family meeting:
There are so many wonderful benefits of holding family meetings including solving problems, creating a sense of wholeness as a family, easing tensions, encouraging gratitude and more. Do you think your family would benefit from a family meeting? Then I encourage you to have them!
Are you subscribed to our newsletter? If not, what are you waiting for? Sign up here! We’ll send you a newsletter every other week full of top events in Skagit and Snohomish County, plus other fun stuff. You won't regret it! (But if you do, you can always unsubscribe. We get it.)
Want more? Find more family fun events here. And always check for current giveaways here.
This guide has been updated April 16, 2019
Are you wanting to take better care of yourself and your family? Then this is the guide for you! You’ll find great local businesses to help with starting the year off right plus tips for simplifying, setting goals and feeling good.
These local businesses offer great services to help you and your family make big changes, feel good and be well throughout the year.
Arlington CrossFit Kids & Teens
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We are a locally owned Kids gym focusing on making fitness fun to develop healthy lifestyles throughout life.
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be. well. offers three intertwined wellness modalities: yoga, nutrition, and coaching. Kathleen is a Certified Nutrition Therapy Practitioner and offers both individual and group nutrition counseling and education. She is a 500 level yoga teacher with advanced training in Restorative yoga, yoga for Parkinson's, as well as other therapeutic approaches. Kathleen currently offers group classes in the Smokey Point area; private yoga in home or in Smokey Point; teacher trainings; yoga with sound bath; workshops, and intensives. Weaving through all of her offerings is her training as a coach. Helping you uncover or rediscover your innate strengths and utilize them for lasting change is what really drives her passion. Kathleen is a National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach through the International Consortium for Health & Wellness Coaches. Sign up for her newsletter here.
"Together we found ways to tackle what seemed like insurmountable problems in my day to day life. I'm grateful and I know that I will use these new found tools repeatedly in years to come." - Dana
"She is a superb teacher and very knowledgeable. I look forward to each and every class of hers. They are truly a treat to your mind and body!” -Lianne
SPECIAL FOR READERS: 20% off 1 private yoga session or 20% off a 1-hour nutrition session.
In the Kitchen with Kimberly (Do You Bake? and Crave It Products)
EMAIL WEBSITE FACEBOOK
Do You Bake? and it's sister line Crave It focus on easy meal solutions made with quality and nutrition in mind. It is built by and for real people. We offer monthly meal kits, freezer sets, baking mixes, including breads, cookies, and yummy desserts. Pantry staples, appetizers, breakfast foods are also available. We offer gluten free, sugar free, and keto products as well. All you do is add the fresh ingredients! We have 250+ products in our arsenal so we got you covered!
I am a mother to a 7 year old daughter and easy to prepare meals are a must to avoid the temptation of the drive thru line. It's important to incorporate healthy meals for the family so everyone reaps the benefits! Knowing my daughter is learning healthy habits and tastes keeps this mommy's heart and health happy!
SPECIAL FOR READERS: Contact me for monthly host specials (online parties available!)
Mt. Baker Gymnastics
EMAIL WEBSITE FACEBOOK
Mt. Baker Gymnastics is here to bring the Skagit Valley community the best of what gymnastics and fitness have to offer - healthy, happy bodies and minds, through safe, professional instruction at all levels. Mt. Baker Gymnastics offers recreational and team gymnastics to the community, from toddlers to adults. We also offer competitive gymnastics for both boys and girls from beginner to elite. Programs include birthday parties, camps, field trips for schools and organizations, and home school fitness programs.
"Best. Gym. Ever! We love it! Coach Dianne is the very best, she pays so much attention to all the details for every event. My daughter has learned so much in the last few months, it's amazing. It's super hard work, but they have figured out how to keep it fun for the girls too!" - Talia
Plexus with Stephanie Ihrig
EMAIL WEBSITE FACEBOOK
I help people dream big by offering holistic, natural, and safe supplementation and a generous compensation plan through Plexus Worldwide, one of the fastest growing companies in the US and Canada. Our products focus on every aspect of your health and happiness so you not only feel better, but also look better, eat better, and live better. With products that work, an amazing support system, and a generous compensation plan, your dreams and goals can become reality.
I share Plexus because not only has it changed my life, but i get to watch it change the lives of the people I care about. I'm a stay at home mom that homeschools her kiddos and I never saw this coming, but I've found so much fun and enjoyment in it! It's given me the opportunity to pay off debt, travel, make new friends and use my own personality and talents in a fun, unique way!
SPECIAL FOR READERS: 1/2 off membership ($17.50 value)
The Natural RN
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As a Registered Nurse, I work primarily with sick people or those in need of medical attention. It is a rewarding job, but my desires and background in natural health have led me on a path to assist individuals of all ages in taking a more proactive approach to health, wellness, and vitality. I help people make individualized goals that fit their needs and wellness outcomes and devise plans to help them achieve those goals with a 90 day wellness plan. All goals might not be fully attained in 90 days, but with me as a personal wellness coach, individuals are set up for success by making lifestyle changes to last beyond 90 days. We will focus on foundational nutrition, functional exercise, rest and stress management, reducing your toxic load, and informed self care. Your health is your greatest wealth and I can’t wait to help you achieve the goals that you have to live life to the fullest.
One of the primary tools that I use to help people on their wellness journey is the use of essential oils. The more you know about essential oils, the more empowered you will be. Education is the foundation of what I do. My desire is to spread the knowledge around the world that healthy can be simple. You do not have to have a degree to utilize the power of plant based wellness. With proper education and following a few safety tips, you will also be on the path to living a life of wellness, naturally.
“I have only been following The Natural RN for a few weeks, but her posts are spot on and full of common sense info I can put right to work. What a SUPER resource!” - Cindy Tharayil
SPECIAL FOR READERS: Free 90 day wellness plan for readers.
Shelbi Thompson, Licensed Massage Therapist
I specialize in relaxation and deep tissue massage. Also offering aromatherapy, cupping and pregnancy massage. Leave your stress and worries at the door! Come relax and rejuvenate while reducing pain or tension as well. I believe in a holistic approach. Massage is for mind, body and spirit! Come see me at Lavish Hair Studio in Burlington!
SPECIAL FOR READERS: Mention you heard about us here and get $10 off!
Simplify your life this year
Simplify. That one word can be life changing. Why? Because life is hard enough when you are juggling family, appointments, relationships, kids, endless to do’s and so on. Right? It’s tough!
But it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. You can have a peaceful home, more time with the family and less time stressing. How? Simplify- Your time, your house and your life. READ MORE HERE.
Creating goals this year
It’s that time of year when we start thinking about goals. There’s something about the New Year that gets everyone motivated to make changes and set goals. But as most of us know, time goes by and we quickly forget. Let’s make 2019 the year we achieve our goals! READ MORE HERE.
Did you know there are so many great benefits to shopping at your local farmer’s market? It’s true! Not only is it a wonderful family experience but it’s beneficial to the community as a whole.
By shopping at these local farmers markets you are supporting local farmers and small businesses. Plus, you’ll get the freshest produce, meet new people and inspire healthy habits at home. What are you waiting for?
Here’s a list of local farmers markets in and around Skagit and Snohomish Counties.
Did we miss one? Please email us here and we’ll be sure to add!
Mount Vernon Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 5
Location: Skagit Valley Hospital
Days and hours: June 5- Aug. 28, every Wed 2-7 p.m.
Know before you go: Find great children activities and food trucks!
Opening date: May 18
Location: Riverwalk Park, downtown Mount Vernon.
Days and hours: May 18- Oct. 12, every Saturday from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Concrete Saturday Market
Opening date: May 25
Location: 45821 Railroad St, Concrete
Days and hours: Saturdays, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., through Aug. 31.
Know before you go: Children ages 12-18 may rent a booth for $5 to sell handmade goods.
Camano Commons Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 4
Location: 848 N. Sunrise Blvd. Camano Island
Days and hours: Tuesdays, 3-7 p.m.
Know before you go: Grab coffee at Camano Island Coffee Roasters and check out Freedom Park (The kiddos love it!) while you are out.
Stanwood Farmer's Market
Previously Port Susan Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 7
Location: Downtown Stanwood
Days and hours: Fridays, 2-6 p.m.
Know before you go: Runs through Oct. 11.
Arlington Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 1
Location: Legion Park, 114 N Olympic Ave, Arlington, WA 98223
Days and hours: Saturdays, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m., through Labor Day
Smokey Point Farmer's Market
Opening date: May 3
Location: 17020 Smokey Point Blvd, Arlington, Washington
Days and hours: Fridays, 2 -6 p.m.
Know before you go: This market is new this year and is ready to impress. Don't miss Auntie Anne's Pretzels Food Truck!
Marysville Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 22
Location: Grocery Outlet, 9620-B State Ave, Marysville, WA
Days and hours: Saturdays, 10 a.m.- 2 p.m., through August 31.
Snohomish Farmer's Market
Opening date: May 2
Location: Intersection of Cedar Avenue & Pearl Street in Snohomish, WA
Days and hours: Thursday’s through Sept. 26, 3-7 p.m.
Know before you go: Find everything from fresh produce, reclaimed furniture, local ice cream to prepared meals like sushi and kettle corn.
Everett Farmer's Market
Opening date: May 12, Mother’s Day
Location: Boxcar Park (1200 Millwright Loop West, Everett) in the Port of Everett.
Days and hours: Sundays, 11 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Know before you go: Open May 12- Oct. 6. Find parking info here. View music line-up.
Opening date: June 5
Location: Everett Station Transit Center (2333 32nd St. Everett )
Days and hours: Wednesdays, 4- 8 p.m.
Know before you go: Open June 5- Aug. 28 Find parking info here.
Edmonds Farmer's Market
Opening date: May 4
Location: 5th and Bell in Downtown Edmonds
Days and hours: Saturdays, 9 a.m.- 2 p.m., through June 8.
Know before you go: This market closes in June but don't worry, the Summer Market opens right after.
Opening date: June 15
Location: 5th and Main in Downtown Edmonds
Days and hours: Saturdays, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., through Oct. 5.
Know before you go: No market August 10. No dogs allowed, except trained and certified service dogs.
Mill Creek Farmer's Market
Opening date: June 18
Location: Mill Creek City Hall North parking lot, 15720 St., Mill Creek.
Days and hours: Tuesdays, 3-7 p.m., through Aug. 20.
Worth the drive
Bellingham Downtown Saturday Farmer's Market:
Opening date: Currently open
Location: Depot Market Square, 1100 Railroad Square
Days and hours: Saturdays, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., through December.
Know before you go: Free parking is available at the Parkade, 1300 Commercial Street.
Why it’s great: Not only is it located in the beautiful city of Bellingham but it hosts over 100 vendors and special events.
Ballard Farmer’s Market
Opening date: Currently open
Location: 22nd Avenue NW and NW Market Street.
Days and hours: Every Sunday, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Know before you go: Parking available on side streets, Sunday meters are free.
Why it’s great: This Market is jammed packed with awesome vendors and fun. Enjoy live music and be sure to try the mini donuts!
Port Townsend Farmer’s Market
Opening date: Currently open
Location: 620 Tyler St. Port Townsend, WA
Days and hours: Saturdays 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. through Oct. and 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. through Dec.
Know before you go: No pets, service animals welcome.
Why it’s great: Live music, 70 vendors and a great community vibe make this market a great place to be.
Methow Valley Farmer's Market- Twisp
Opening date: April 10
Location: Methow Valley Community Center, 201 WA-20, Twisp, WA
Days and hours: Saturdays, 9 a.m.- 12 p.m., through Oct.
Why it’s great: Twisp is full of hidden gems, river fun and great places to eat. Not only that but it's a short drive to western themed Winthrop, another local treasured town.
Pybus Public Market- Wenatchee
Opening date: Currently open
Location: 3 N. Worthen Wenatchee, WA
Days and hours: Everyday, 8 a.m.- 9 p.m.
Know before you go: The Summer Market and Wednesday Market are separate, located outside.
Why it’s great: Catch live music every Friday night from 6-8 p.m., enjoy some of the best food from restaurants located inside the market and really take it all in. The building itself is really neat to see.
How to get the most out of your local Farmer’s Market
Don’t forget to ask about vendor punch cards or children programs, and fresh bucks.
It's that time of year again. Let's get started setting 2020 goals. It’s all about setting realistic goals and being intentional. Let’s start by grabbing a paper and a pen.
First, ask yourself a couple of questions.
Be sure to write these down.
Write down everything that comes to your mind when you think of your goals for this year.
We tend to focus on the negative, becoming quickly overwhelmed. Setting goals is about growing as a person. It's not about pointing out all of our flaws and dwelling on that. View this as a time to reflect on your life. It should be fun!
Now take that paper and craft your goals.
Here are some tips to set intentional goals this year.
Hint: Setting a reminder in your phone or creating a calendar event to review your goals is super helpful!
What about family goals?
These are just as important as your goals. Get the family together and talk about your goals. What is working and what isn’t? Do you want less screen time? More home cooked meals? Follow the steps above to create goals for your family.
Good luck with your goals. Let’s make 2020 the year of amazing change and growth!
Tips for simplifying your life starting today
Simplify. That one word can be life-changing. Why? Because life is hard enough when you are juggling family, appointments, relationships, kids, endless to do’s and so on. Right? It’s tough!
But it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. You can have a peaceful home, more time with the family and less time stressing. How? Simplify- your time, your house and your life.
As a mom of three boys, always on the go- I believed chaos was normal. Now don’t get me wrong, a house full of three boys is wild. But the idea that I was meant to struggle through each day, my head spinning, that was wrong. After many, many tears I discovered one thing. I needed to be more intentional with my time. I needed to simplify all that I could. And with this came the room to breathe, it was truly an incredible, much-needed change.
So what does that look like?
I learned that I can’t handle clutter. It’s silly because that should be obvious. I am a neat freak by nature. When you come to my house it's usually always clean, even with three boys running around, jumping from couch to couch, bouncing off the walls. I know they say a messy house means you are creating memories, and let me tell you I believe it. But I am different and that's okay. I still take the time to go on adventures with my boys but I do it with a clean house. And I like it that way. In truth, you shouldn't' fall to the pressures of what everyone (you know those mothers who clearly know it all and have it all together. Cheers to you!) says you should do. But that's another story, for another time. I knew I like things tidy, that's not news to me or anyone I know. But I can honestly say I never thought clutter was the biggest stressor for me. This wasn’t until I started tossing things and giving stuff away. We went from toys everywhere in every room, to a couple per kid. And you want to know what? They didn’t even know they were gone. They didn’t ask for anything because they were too busy making swords out of kitchen utensils and forts out of chairs and blankets. And I felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. I didn’t walk into a room anymore and feel my heart start to race because of all the things everywhere.
If you take anything away from this- it is that you should set a day aside to go through your house- keep what you need and toss/give away the rest. I am telling you- it’s a game changer!
I went from feeling like I had to have my schedule full all the time, with all the things and I realized it's okay to say no. Time to rest, breathe and just be are so important. I embraced the notion that less is actually more, our time is valuable and it’s okay to let go of some responsibilities. Think laundry help and grocery pick up- yes, please!
What I've learned about simplifying
Declutter- Toss and give it away!
I mentioned above clutter is my enemy. It’s the all evil, out to get me. I grabbed a laundry basket and a stack of garbage bags one day and I haven’t looked back. I went through each room, tossing the trash and parting with the stuff to donate. It wasn’t easy, it was hard but it was worth it. Having each room be clear from the mess (apart from day to day clutter) is something I hold dear.
Start to really be mindful about your time and your families time. Is one of your major stressors that you are always busy? On the go? Then this might be something you need to tackle first. It’s okay to say no, to prioritize and not feel guilty. Most of the time people will genuinely understand. And just because you say no now doesn’t mean that it’ll always be a no, it just means now is not the season for it.
Here are 5 things you can do this week to simplify your life
More ways to simplify your life
Simplifying in different areas has been truly a gift to not only myself but my family as well. It’s something that has made a world of difference. I hope it does to yours as well!
Updated April 2, 2019, with upcoming event information.
I had the pleasure of asking Erin Long, Founder of WE Ignite, a couple of questions before her much anticipated women's conference. Erin brings women of all walks of life together for a day of inspiration with her WE Ignite Women's Conference: Connecting Women in 2020. The mission is to equip women with the tools they need to succeed in life while finding their power and igniting their passion. This one-day conference takes place on Feb. 7th at Swinomish Casino and Lodge in Anacortes.
Erin is a true leader, encouraging women to find their voice and love themselves. You can find more information about this wonderful event here.
North Parent Press: The WE Ignite Women's Conference looks so inspiring. Can you tell us more about this event? What does it mean to you?
Erin: The WE Ignite Women’s Conference is a calling for me. A wisp of a dream that settled in my mind and has since become a 10-year plan. My hope for WE Ignite is for women to come together and laugh, learn, listen, and leave exhausted yet excited for next year.
The 2020 WE Ignite conference will focus on connecting women; to resources, with each other, and with our community.
North Parent Press: How did the idea come for this event?
Erin: The idea for the event came to me as I was sitting on a panel at a shorter event. I recall thinking to myself “we need more women in this room and much longer than an hour together”. That was in March of 2018. But it wasn’t until a kind and generous soul, a mentor of mine, died that the idea became a vision. His death and subsequent inspiration are what keeps me going.
North Parent Press: What is your favorite part of the conference?
Erin: Oh my goodness, what is my favorite part? Each session is so wonderful it’s hard to say. I’ve been meeting with so many incredible women and hearing their stories. That’s been wonderful, but my favorite part so far is how excited every woman is about this event; this keeps me dedicated and grounded.
North Parent Press: What should attendees expect?
Erin: Attendees should expect a full day of exploration, expansion of each woman’s concept of herself and the greater community of women. There will be time for learning, laughter, and listening. My hope is each woman leaves excited but exhausted!
North Parent Press: I know one of the many wonderful things about this conference is the speakers, and the wealth of information women will receive. Can you tell us the lineup?
Erin: We are still confirming a couple of speakers, but stay tuned! We also have three panels during our break-out sessions in the afternoon.
North Parent Press: What do you hope women walk away with that evening?
Erin: My hope is that each woman will leave with a greater sense of connection to herself, her community, and her role in this world. Women coming together and connecting with each other is a powerful experience.
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