Monday, September 30, 2013

Monday Meditation.

Well hello there!

I hope you had a most fabulous weekend. I know I did!

A song that we sang during praise and worship at church on Sunday inspired this Monday Meditation.

I'm including the video of the song as a bonus since I missed posting last Thursday.

It's a two-for-one! #yourwelcome.

There have been several seasons in my life when I just did not feel like God was near to me.
At one point, I was making bad choices and deliberately trying to separate myself from him.
Other times I was seeking him, looking for his direction and I just didn't feel his presence near me at the time.

Have you ever been there?

This song in church yesterday reminded me of the fact that Jesus never ever leaves us.

Even in those moments where I turn away from him.
When I make a mistake, or a bad choice, or choose to be disobedient.
If I feel lonely and abandoned in earthly relationships.

I love to be reminded that He is there and he will never fail me.
And he never stops being willing to support me.
He will never abandon me or turn his back on me.




Hebrews 13:5b (AMP)
For He [God] [b]Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor [c]give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [d][I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor [e]let [you] down ([f]relax My hold on you)! [[g]Assuredly not!](A)

This is such an important truth!

I want you to know that God is ALWAYS present in your life.

Yes.
That's right.
There are NO EXCEPTIONS!!!

It doesn't matter if you feel like you are all alone.
Or that you have made too many mistakes.
You may be seeking him and just don't feel his presence at the moment.

None of these things matter because the truth is in this verse.

HE WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU!

The verse says it THREE TIMES. When Jesus repeats something three times, he means business.

There is nothing you can ever do that would cause him to abandon or turn his back on you.
He is concerned with every detail of your life.
He is always right there, waiting to love you, support you, and help you.

If you are seeking him and can't hear his voice or sense his presence- I want to encourage you to keep pressing into him!
James 4:8 says that when you draw near to God, he will draw near to you. Stay in an attitude of expectation and you WILL hear his voice. It may not be in the way you expect, or in the timing you would like- but he WILL show up!

In a world where circumstances and earthly relationships are constantly changing and often prove unreliable, there is one thing that will never change; Jesus' presence in your life and his unconditional love for you.

His desire to support and hold you throughout every season of your life remains the same.

Wow.
That's pretty amazing isn't it?!?

Rest in this truth today friends.





Friday, September 27, 2013

High Five for Friday!

I'm a little behind this week and the blog has been quiet. Sorry for that!

The weather has just been so beautiful around here Grace and I have been busy enjoying it and spending time at the park and going on walks all week. My favorite.

What better way to end the week than my High Five for Friday highlights?!?
I'm linking up with Lauren at thelaurenelizabeth.com. Check our her blog if you ever have the chance.

1. This weather has been awesome!


I wish fall would never end.

2. This #hashtag video by Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon is hysterical. They are my favorite comedic duo ever!



3. Grace has an alphabet book and she has had me sing the song to her at least 100 times this week. No joke. I keep catching her carrying the book around the house (she also has been taking it in the car with her) and "singing". Its the cutest.


video


4. As I said earlier, we have spent quite a bit of time at the park this week. One of our nearby parks has lots of ducks and Grace just loves them. This little lady has no fear of animals.

5. This is just good stuff right here. Brought me right back to our Monday Meditation.

 I am working on some new posts so check back soon. 

Have a lovely weekend friends!
Blessings!

Monday, September 23, 2013

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Monday Meditation.




Matthew 19:26 (NKJV)
But Jesus looked at them and said to them, "With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

Period.

End of story.

There are no exceptions here folks.
NOTHING is impossible with God.

Whatever you are believing for today, all you need to know is that with God it IS possible. 

Rest in that truth today.
Lean into the one who is ABLE.

Happy Monday!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Let it Go.


Ever since I saw someone post this picture on Instagram, the refrain has been running through my head.

When I start to let myself get offended.
When I let little things annoy or upset me.
When I feel like I need to "fix" a situation that has gone awry and obsess over it.
When I feel insecure about something I said/did.
When I have certain expectations that aren't met.

God has just been laying it on my heart that I need to stop letting these attitudes bog me down and
 LET IT ALL GO!

However, this past Friday, while I was getting my hair done, my sweet hair stylist and I were conversing and I got the message loud and clear again. But this time it was for a different reason.

She was telling me a story, and while my personal situation wasn't exactly like hers, I felt like her response was what God wanted me to hear. Her words of wisdom resonated with me for the rest of the day and I thought I should share them here with you. (Side note: Don't you love it when God speaks through others? I do!)

LET THEM GO!

Are there people in your life that don't know the Lord?
Or that aren't walking with the Lord currently?
Doing destructive things and making poor choices?
Living in defeat?

There are in mine.

I want them to know God's grace and forgiveness so badly. To walk in his freedom. To have the peace that passes all understanding. To be healed and restored. To make good choices and know how much they are loved and valued.

Oftentimes, because of this I try to be their savior. I try to take the reigns and be the Holy Spirit in their lives.

I am certainly no savior. I am far from perfect and mess up all the time!
Its not my place to try and "fix"someone or change their heart.
Only God can do this.
There is only one Savior and his name is Jesus.

What I need to do is to lovingly LET THEM GO. Release my grip on the situation and prayerfully offer up these people in my life to the Lord. Even if it means they make bad decisions and suffer consequences as a result.

I need remember to:
Trust that he is their Savior and he is able to do what I can not.
Trust that he can rescue, restore, and heal anyone.
Trust that the Lord is at work in their lives even when I can't see it.
Trust in the power of prayer!

Both messages are resounding truth for me lately. They remind me again that the only person I can control is myself and my own attitude and responses. I don't help a situation by trying to be in control. God always knows much better than I do. Something I definitely forget often.

Maybe your situation isn't identical to mine but God is wanting you to listen to this response.

Which message do you need to hear today?

Let it go.
Let them go.

Acts 4:12 (AMP)
And there is salvation in and through no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by and in which we must be saved.




Friday, September 20, 2013

High Five For Friday!


Today I am linking up with Lauren over at thelaurenelizabeth.com. Every Friday she does a High Five for Friday post featuring the top five highlights of her week.

I'm joining in on the fun today with my own high five for friday!

1. I got my hair done today. One of my favorite indulgences! I went a little bit darker this time and I am loving it! I am not a fan of selfies (or the term "selfies" for that matter) so I don't have a pic for you. #sorryimnotsorry

2. Everyone in my house is finally well! My husband and daughter got bit by the stomach bug earlier this week, so there has been a lot of cleaning up bodily fluids, if you know what I mean. #ick

3. Charlotte Gambill, one of my favorite speakers, posted this verse on her Instagram earlier this week, and I just loved it. I keep going back to read it.

4. I attended my first MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting this week. I am so excited for what's ahead and left the meeting just excited and expectant at all God has in store for our table this semester. So many lovely ladies to connect with!

5. Getting to spend my week with this sweet girl is always a highlight. I just love her!

Five doesn't seem like enough! There were lots of great things this week. But it will have to do.
Praying your weekend is fabulous friends. Be blessed!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Thursday Jam.


I've decided this is going to be a regular thing. Posting some of my favorite worship songs and why I like them.

That sound good? Good. Its a plan!

This song came on my Hillsong Pandora station this week. I love love love it!

It reminded me of how far I've come in my relationship with the Lord- and how much my faith has been stretched and expanded over the past few years.

Also that God knows much better than I do what's best for me. (Duh!)

About two or three years ago, I felt like it was a desert season for me as far as my relationship with the Lord was concerned.

Things were changing at work. I had gotten promoted into a new position and I absolutely loathed my  job. And my boss.

I was in my fifth year of traveling several nights a week for work and I was OVER IT. But I just didn't feel like I was supposed to find a different job. And I didn't like that one bit!

I had the hardest time keeping an attitude of joy during that time. I was desperately seeking God for guidance and it just felt like he wasn't there. (He WAS there, he was just being quiet) I was really trying to figure out what he had for me and I just couldn't for a period of time. It felt frustrating!

During that time, a dear friend of mine gave me three Hillsong cd's that I had been wanting and "Desert Song" was on one of them. I listened to it on repeat for weeks. It was the breakthrough I needed!

It felt like God was speaking to me directly through this song. Isn't that an awesome thing about worship music?!?

Here are the lyrics:

Verse 1:
This is my prayer in the desert
And all that's within me feels dry
This is my prayer in the hunger in me
My God is a God who provides

Verse 2:
And this is my prayer in the fire
In weakness or trial or pain
There is a faith proved
Of more worth than gold
So refine me Lord through the flames

Chorus:
And I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon forged against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and He is here

Verse 3:
And this is my prayer in the battle
And triumph is still on it's way
I am a conqueror and co-heir with Christ
So firm on His promise I'll stand

Bridge:
All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

Verse 4:
This is my prayer in the harvest
When favor and providence flow
I know I'm filled to be empited again
The seed I've recieved I will sow 


The chorus is what really stuck with me. 
All of our lives, in every season, He is still God and we have a reason to worship.

Whatever season you find yourself in today- I hope that is an encouragement to you! 
You ALWAYS have a reason to worship. 
Our circumstances don't change who God is or what he is able to do. 
He has promised he will give us victory in every situation! 

2 Corinthians 2:14
But thanks be to God, Who in Christ always leads us in triumph [as trophies of Christ’s victory] and through us spreads and makes evident the fragrance of the knowledge of God everywhere

AMEN!
( I am including two versions- because I love them both equally!)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Choosing a name.


Choosing a name for this blog was quite a tricky thing.

Between picking something that felt inspired, gave the reader some idea of subject matter, and finding a name that wasn't already taken, it proved to be quite a challenge.

I wanted to give a little bit of background in order to maybe give you a bit of insight into me and where this little blog is headed, so here is how My Grace-Full Life came to be!

To get the full story, let's rewind here a little to before I was a mom. Let me give you a picture of who I was at that time:

Working in corporate America.
A total career woman and corporate ladder climber.
Traveling at least three days a week. Every week.
Did NOT want to ever NOT be working.
Involved in church a limited amount- as much as I could be with my schedule.

My priorities were all messed up. Work consumed my life. It was where I found my identity and security. I spent most of my time working. I had no desire to be a mom. I didn't put my husband as first priority and was not serving him the way I should.
I was overly critical of others. Judgmental and prideful.
It wasn't pretty.

It probably seemed like I had it all together from the outside. I had a great job, husband, house, I belonged to a great church where I was seeking the Lord and working on maturing in my faith.

But God knew I needed something more.

A change of heart. A change of attitude. A different place to find my identity.

And then I got pregnant and had my sweet girl, Grace. My life flipped upside down.

I quit my job.
Everything I used to do/have was stripped away.
I realized how much of my security and identity was found in my job/paycheck and not in God.

And I promptly freaked out. For the first nine months of her life I was a mess inside.

It was a scary place for me! To confront some of the idols, fears, and unforgiveness that was resulting in a sense of false security. To recognize some strongholds in my life. To realize what it means to totally and completely rely on the Lord.

And on top of all that- I was figuring out how to be a mom. Whoa.

It felt overwhelming!

But the miraculous thing is that God changed my heart. Revealed to me his love in a new way. Showed me what his grace really looks like lived out. I found a new purpose.

And slowly I came back to life. It is a new season for me, filled with more joy and peace than I could have ever imagined. My faith has been stretched and expanded. I know Him better than I did before.

Life is so much better and more fulfilling for me now and I wouldn't go back to what I was for anything.

Now, please understand, this is still a process I'm going through and I still struggle at times. But I've come a long way!

So that is where the inspiration for the blog name came from.

I had Grace. (My daughter)
God showed me what true grace looks like, and I'm learning how to extend that same grace to others.
My life is anything but graceful. I am always making mistakes and letting emotions get the better of me-but I'm learning and growing!

My prayer is that this blog blesses someone out there as I share bits of my Grace-filled journey. Your path/experiences may not look exactly like mine- but that's ok! We can all learn something from each other and find encouragement along the way.
Thanks for reading!

2 Corinthians 12:9 (AMP)
But He said to me, My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for My strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness. Therefore, I will all the more gladly glory in my weaknesses and infirmities, that the strength and power of Christ (the Messiah) may rest (yes, may pitch a tent over and dwell) upon me!






What I'm loving Wednesday


How is it already Wednesday again?!?

One thing they don't tell before you have kids is that after you do- time passes at warp speed. It's true!

Since last Wednesday I have restrained myself from posting all the things I love just so that I could write this juicy post and include it all. #yourwelcome

First of all, I thought this article entitled "Surviving Whole Foods" was absolutely hilarious. I totally related to the way the author feels about the place. I like to call it "Whole Paycheck", because that's what it could cost me to shop there. I was laughing out loud. Read it!
(FYI- she does use some swear words in the article, which I don't like and weren't necessary in my opinion. Still worth a read if you need a good laugh today!)

Secondly, I am loving group fitness right now. It used to be my absolute favorite way to work out (and really still is). But after I got pregnant, at a certain point I just had to quit and exercise in other ways. 

Since then, I hadn't gotten the chance to resume that type of workout due to gym schedules, nap schedules, etc etc etc. Well- last week I got to go back- YAY! And then this week, my daughter caught a stomach bug and I wasn't able to make it again. Wah wah. There's always next week!


Which brings me to my next favorite thing: Shaun T's Focus T25 workout videos. For those days when I can't make it to the gym for whatever reason- this workout is awesome. And only 25 minutes. Score! Its a tough workout too. 
In case you aren't familiar- Shaun T also did the Insanity workout (so good too!).

I am also loving Honeycrisp Apples this week. I finally found some here in Michigan!  I immediately bought a whole bag. This is an apple they developed in Minnesota, so when we lived there they were plentiful! They are the sweetest and most crisp apples I have ever tasted. So. Good.
What apple snack would be complete without the perfect fall companion? Yes, friends, I'm talking about caramel dip. Am I right? YUM.

Finally, I am majorly lusting after some fall booties. I used to think they were icky, but I am a total convert! I have been having a hard time deciding which pair to purchase. Sheaffer over at Pinterest Told Me To wrote a great post today about fall booties. I think some booties would look fabulous with my camo skinnies!

What are your favorites this week?

Hope your Wednesday has been fabulous!



Monday, September 16, 2013

Weekend.

Hi friends!

So how was your weekend? It was a fun one around here.

Nice fall temperatures.
Windows open.
Some time at the park.

A Wildcat Victory.
Maybe the win was a result of this little good luck charm? I'm gonna go with that!

We watched two good movies.
Lots of family time.
Church.

All in all a restful weekend. 

Even though I am a stay at home mom, Mondays can be kind of a downer after a fun weekend when the hubby has to go back to work.

So, I thought Mondays on the bloggy blog might be a good time for a Monday Meditation.

I always think its a good thing to keep scripture in front of you. To memorize it. Meditate on it. When I am praying, I am often reminded of verses that I memorized years ago. God always uses his word to speak to me and encourage me. I love that!

This is one of my all-time favorite verses and something that I am reminded of almost on a daily basis. Most recently during our moving, buying a home/selling a home, being homeless for a month process earlier this summer.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
Do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
And he will show you which path to take.

To sum it up, our move from Minnesota to Michigan was a difficult (and long!) transition. My daughter and I were alone and my husband had to move to Michigan without us while we sold our old home and bought a new home. The separation ended up being three months long and was much more challenging than we expected. 

We put offers on 8 (yes 8!!!) houses in Michigan before an offer was accepted. (The housing market was pretty tough and the supply of homes on the market was at a ten year low- good for sellers and bad for buyers) And then we were homeless for a month in between the buying/selling process!

I recited this verse out loud every day. I just knew the Lord was in the midst of this situation even though after each rejection of an offer on a house the "reality" of things didn't look positive. 

So today, write this verse on your heart. Know that even though a situation may not look good with your earthly eyes, when we trust in the Lord he will direct our steps. "Reality" means nothing to our God. He isn't constrained to our earthly realities. He works supernaturally. He will take care of you and whatever predicament you might find yourself in. He is faithful.
Every. Time.

Praying this verse blesses you this week!

Happy Monday :)

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Recipe: Warm Goat Cheese Salad with Liquid Gold Vinaigrette


Since I have become a stay at home mom, I have been experimenting with new recipes quite a bit more than I had in the past. Much to my surprise, I actually find myself enjoying it!
(My old self, who was so preoccupied with work and going 180 mph all day every day, hated cooking)

So here is a recipe (if you can call salad a recipe?) that I made the other night and it was so good, I made it again for lunch the next day! Super easy and no pricey ingredients either. I thought I should share in the hopes that you all would make it and enjoy it as much as I did.

Oh, and remember in this post when I said I loved cheese? Well, goat cheese happens to be my favorite. I have been known to order entree's in restaurants for the sole fact that one of the ingredients was goat cheese.
True story.
So, as you can see, its fitting that my first posted recipe includes my favorite cheese. And BTW- goat cheese is not a pricey ingredient if you shop at Aldi: $1.99 for a log. (Maybe in a future post I will discuss my love for Aldi) Score!



Warm Goat Cheese Salad

Ingredients
Goat Cheese Log
1/2 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
1-2 Egg Whites
1 T. Olive Oil
1 T. Butter
Greens of choice (I used Spinach and Arugula)
Anything else you would like to add to the salad! (I used cherry tomatoes and slivered raw almonds)

Instructions
Slice your goat cheese into as many rounds as you need (approx. 2 per salad), being careful that it doesn't break apart. Using dental floss to slice it can help. Dip each round into the egg white and then into the bread crumbs, making sure to coat it well.

Take the coated rounds and place in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. During this time you can toss your salad ingredients in the dressing if you wish. After 15 minutes, heat olive oil and butter in skillet. When it starts to bubble, place the rounds in the oil and brown on both sides. This happens pretty quickly, and you need to get them out before the cheese melts, so be careful!

Liquid Gold Vinaigrette 

This dressing is amazing! I found the recipe here, and just omitted the Fig Jam. SO. GOOD.

Now assemble your salad and ENJOY!

Truth.

I don't know about you, but when I try to fully grasp who God is, I often make the mistake of applying characteristics of my human relationships here on earth to better understand.

I often find myself trying to gain approval from God. Or wondering if he is mad or frustrated with all the mistakes and times that I take a step backward.

I could not be more wrong. My understanding is so limited! (Isaiah 55:8-9)

I am reminded of that even more since becoming a mother. When I look at my daughter, and think of how much I love her- I remember that God loves me even more than that. Its hard to fathom!

A friend posted this video on Facebook today and I was reminded of what a mighty, awesome, loving, gracious, powerful God he is! It is so worth the 4.5 minutes to watch. Do it.

Such powerful, life-changing truth. And a good reminder for me.

Whatever place or season you find yourself in right now, I want you to know that God is mighty and he loves you- no matter what. In fact, he values you so much he was willing to sacrifice a son (John 3:16).

His message is love, grace, and forgiveness, and even if you haven't experienced that in your relationships here on earth you can find it in Him.

There is nothing too broken that He can't fix.
There is no need that he can't provide for.
There is no marriage too far gone that He can't restore.
There is no pain, or brokenness, or sickness that He can't heal.
There is no one too far gone that He can't rescue.
There is no addiction or stronghold He can't overcome.
There is no past He won't forgive.
There is NO ONE on this earth that He won't welcome with open, loving arms. 

Friends, my prayer for you today is that you would come to know this love. Or if you have already experienced it, that you would be reminded, and brought to a new level of understanding about just how great that love is. Amen and Amen!

Ephesians 3:17-21
New Living Translation (NLT)
17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.












Thursday, September 12, 2013

This is my jam.


I love worship music. I love some secular music too- don't get me wrong. But there are days when the right worship song just lifts my mood. Keeps me in an attitude of worship and expectation.

Have you ever noticed the difference when you listen to worship music consistently and even when its not on its playing on repeat all day in your subconscious?

Or is that just me? Weird.

This song has been on repeat at our house recently.

So. Good.

(For reference, it is Priscilla Shirer's brother. He was on The Voice one or two seasons ago)


Be blessed!

A New Season: Friendship.

We recently moved from Minnesota to Michigan. Although I have lived here in Michigan once before for a short time (8 years ago), this time around I am in a new season of life, and a different location in the city.

So here I am again starting over. Searching for connections. Praying for new friendships. Dealing with the loneliness of limited adult interaction. While I have several, long distance girlfriends now- not having that face to face girlfriend time can be hard!

Maybe you find yourself in a new season looking for friendship too? Sometimes, in the natural ebb and flow of life and family, you can find yourself in this season without having moved to a different state. Whatever the reason, I understand.

It can be hard to put yourself out there and make new connections with other women. To be vulnerable. Frankly, its a little bit uncomfortable! For me, it feels like dating again. Blech!

As women, we can be critical. Too hard on ourselves and on others. We don't make it easy!
(Please understand I am making generalizations here....)

We compare.
We all have insecurities.
We get offended too easily.
We often let emotions and feelings take over.
We have a tendency to gossip.
We have a tendency to form groups or "cliques" and can be exclusive.

In the past, female friendships have been tricky for me. Growing up, I didn't have solid, faith based female friendships modeled for me. I didn't know how to be a friend, so unfortunately I was a terrible friend to many lovely ladies. I let rejection by friends as a young teen form a stronghold in my life that kept me from forming deep friendships for a very long time.

As I have grown in my faith, and prayed more about learning to be a good friend, God has taught me so much about what that looks like through his love. His grace. And he has placed people in my life in just the right season to show me what true faith based friendship looks like. It breathed life into me. Encouragement. Love. Support.

There is nothing like it girlfriend!

As I look back on my time in Minnesota, I am encouraged for the future here in Michigan.

God answered my prayers for friendship far beyond anything I could have imagined in my six years there!

Ephesians 3:20 (MSG)
God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us.

So friend, if you find yourself in a similar situation of without and waiting on friendships: be encouraged. God is able to do beyond all you can ask or think or imagine! And he is ALWAYS faithful.

So seek Him in the waiting. 
Discover what He has for you right in this place you find yourself in. 
Trust that he values you so much, that he gave his son for you. He knows the desires of your heart.
Put yourself out there! Join a small group and get plugged into a church.

This article over at the inCourage blog spoke to my heart about this matter too, if you need some more wisdom on the subject.

Blessings to you!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

What I'm loving Wednesday

Happy Hump Day!

Hope your week is going fabulous so far. Its been a hot one here in Michigan:
92 Degrees and 1000% humidity. Ugh. Thank you Jesus for air conditioning and anti-frizz serum!

So anyhoo- I am the type of person who, when I find something I love (a song, a recent purchase, a tv show, etc etc etc) I do the following:

1. I want to let everyone I come in contact with know how much I loved it.
2. I want them to love it as much as I do.

So I figured this blog is the perfect spot to shout from the rooftops a few things I am currently loving.

First thing I am loving currently is camo pants for fall. Such a fun way to mix up the usual jeans and a tee look I usually have going on. I bought this pair from Target, but you can find them anywhere these days. I have also seen similar looks at Gap, JC Penney, and Macy's.
If you search Pinterest for ideas on different ways to style these, you will be surprised at how many different looks you can acheive with these! They really work as a neutral.

The second thing I am currently loving is Beth Moore's Esther Bible Study. I just went to our first bible study meeting this morning and I am so excited about it!

Also this message on purpose by Jen Hatmaker rocked my socks off. Spend the 40 minutes and listen friends. If you ever wonder what your purpose is- listen. Do it. Life changing stuff here people. I plan to listen to it at least one more time. I hope to do a future post on this one.

Lastly, I am seriously loving some baby Chuck Taylor's right now. I got Grace a pink pair and we loved them so much that her auntie got her a red pair too! She receives so many compliments on them. I am a huge fan of the fact she cannot get them off her feet.

The little stinker thought it was so funny to take off her Stride Rite velcro shoes, we've almost lost them many times. Well, mama won this battle thanks to Converse!


So what things are you currently loving? Please share!

Monday, September 9, 2013

10 Things About Me

I read a LOT of blogs. Any type of blog: fitness, healthy living, parenting, lifestyle, fashion. I just love blogs!

The ones that I gravitate towards, I find myself personally relating to the author in some way. So I thought maybe those who read this might be interested in a few fun things about myself.

Why 10 things?

Well 5 seems not enough and 20 seems excessive- so 10 it is!

1. I am a Kansas girl. I went to Kansas State University. (Go Wildcats!!!) But I don't live in Kansas anymore.


2. I married a southern boy from North Carolina 5.5 years ago. We met online! (and no I'm not ashamed to admit it!) He is wonderful- and handsome! I am a lucky lady.


3. I love cheese. I thank the Lord every day I am not lactose intolerant. Ok, not really. But if I ever had to give up dairy I would be seriously heartbroken.

4. I worked in corporate America for 10 years and never ever thought I would have children or have any desire to be a stay-at-home mom. And yet- here I am! 

5. I am so blessed to be a mama to Grace. She has turned my life upside down in the best way possible and I love her so much!


6. Since college I have lived in Kansas City, Missouri, Detroit, Michigan, Memphis, Tennessee, and Minneapolis, Minnesota. I'm an expert mover and new friend maker. Haha!

7. I love to read. Although I don't have as much time for it these days, I love to read newspapers, blogs, books, and magazines.

8. I have two vices: celebrity gossip and diet coke. Don't judge.

9. Because of #7 and #8 I am a wealth of useless knowledge and I can dominate a game of pop culture trivia.

10. I am a cat lady. Not really, but I have two cats: Lucy and Dewey. They used to be like our children until we had one. Then they became pets. They are still mourning their step down on the priority list at our house.

So now that we know each other so well we can be friends, right?
Oh good.
Glad we got that out of the way.

Happy Monday!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

4 Years

4 years.
Yes, that's right.

4 years is how long its taken me to sit down and do the work to get this blog started. When I see it written its hard for me to believe too! 

I can remember the exact time and place God laid it on my heart to start writing a blog. I was in a hotel room in Fargo, ND. I was working in corporate sales at the time and traveling at least three nights a week- every week- to exiting places such as Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, and the Dakotas. You're jealous already aren't you?

I was eagerly praying and seeking God's plan and purpose for my life when the idea to start a blog just dropped into my heart and I immediately knew it was what I should do. I set right out in obedience (HA!) and got the domain name, and started writing that evening. 

But that was when the doubt crept in. 

What if nobody read what I had to say? 

What if I had nothing to say?

What if what I had to say people hated?

Writing a blog is complicated- how will I figure it out?

You know how it goes. Any time we are about to step out in faith these voices seem to get deafening.

And I am ashamed to say I listened and delayed obedience. I let the enemy win. For FOUR YEARS! 

Even after numerous people out of the blue told me I should start a blog.
After a professor told me I had a gift for writing.
After my husband told me I needed to blog.

All without me telling anyone about what God has laid on my heart.

How many times did I need God to remind me?!? Talk about delayed obedience. Sheesh.

All I needed was a good and final kick in the pants that came in the form of a Bible study I was a part of this summer. The subject was Gideon and the first two weeks of lessons were on delayed obedience.

Yes.
For real.
You can't say God doesn't have a sense of humor.

I am sure he was smiling and shaking his head as I was reading and praying through those first few weeks of lessons.

Ok God! I got the message. 

So alas, here I am at the beginning of a blogging journey. Praying God can use this little thing to connect with others. Maybe bless them in the process. Or make them laugh. Or shake their head. Any response is fine with me really. 

I intend to use this little space to write about what I'm learning in my faith journey, some of the times I mess up and fail along the way, about my experiences as a stay at home mom to the sweetest little girl (I'm biased), and to share all the things I love (which include anything to do with fashion, cooking, cheese, fitness, and healthy living).

Here we go!