A Lot Of Filling and Smothered with Frosting

A little fun, A little Crazy, And a lot of Inspiration

Shadow Plateau

house shadow

As I sat on my porch waiting on the kids to go on a walk with me I looked in my yard and found this image. It quickly took me to another place. I had to snap the picture because it so truthfully told what I had been struggling with lately. As with most of my posts, I’m pretty transparent so please if you need to judge, do so quietly.

You see as I looked at this shadow I thought of how it shadows my spiritual life right now. See that highest peak over there on the right? I was there once. I can feel it, remember it, see it in my prayer journal, and then I can see the decline. I stop writing, praying, reading my Bible, my priorities are all out of whack. I hit a valley. I then tried to climb that mountain again, getting back into my routine, listening to God again. But just like this shadow there seems to be a pattern. I never quite made it back to that top peak. I know that peak could be higher, I know I can never get close enough to God. But I can’t even seem to make it back to that top one. And now where am I? I seem to be in that plateau you see over there on the left. One definition of plateau is “a state of little or no change following a period of activity or progress.” I feel like I hit that recently. I feel I was working my way back up and then I’m not sure what happened but I just seem to gradually stop growing and plateau. Now I feel like I’m stuck there and can’t start the climb again. I feel like I’m lost in this journey. I want to climb, I tell myself I’m going to, I set goals, I try to make myself, but I’m stuck. I get stuck in the business of life. I skip daily devotional to clean, workout, check Facebook, etc… The list could go on and on again. I think I will get to it later and I don’t. I feel like I’m stuck even more when I wake up on Sunday mornings and I have to push myself to go to church. I feel guilty when I pray over our food or for my kids when they are sick, because when else do I go to Him?

I hit this plateau and I’ve tried to look back and find the cause, find the reason, discover how I got here. I can’t find it. There seems to be no explanation. I’d say it’s because I don’t do my devotionals in the morning, but the truth is for me it had to start before that stopped because had I not already been headed this direction my time in the mornings spent alone with God wouldn’t have decreased. How do I begin to climb again? Where do I start? I don’t like this plateau. When I’m here and I’m stuck, everything else seems to be off too. I become that mom who feels like I’m not enough. I feel like that wife who could do more if I just knew what to do. I begin to wish I could do more as a daughter to be there for my mom in a trying time. But most of all I feel like that child of God who is not worthy enough to even pray and ask Him to help me out of this muck I’m in. Have you been here? How do I get back? In my transparency I don’t even know how to pray this through, I don’t even know where to begin other than to say, I know I’m failing.

God, please forgive me! Let this shadow not continue to be my pattern. Help me to begin to climb again and to continue climbing and even if I begin to slide, let me find my way back up instead of being stuck in this sleepy haze of a plateau.

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Why Beautycounter?

I know many of you may be wondering but won’t ask why I got myself into direct sales again. Many are probably thinking I’ve lost my mind, worrying it won’t work, or just sick of seeing my posts on facebook. So let me explain and for those worrying, mom, let me help you out a little. I didn’t make this decision lightly. I put a lot of thought into it and prayed about it (probably not as much as I should have because I was excited about it and thought that to be my answer). I researched it, I sampled it, I loved it. So where did it all start? It was a blend of different things.

1. I looked in the mirror a few times and it hit me that I’m getting older. I wouldn’t say I’ve ever been over confident in my appearance, but I’ve never really struggled with extremely low self-esteem unless it was in middle and high school. I started looking at my skin and realizing I needed to change something. I was looking older than my young children keep me feeling. I still want to be beautiful for my husband. I’m just not ready or the whole getting older thing. But it was more than just a look in the mirror, which brings me to my next why.

2. My little girl has started mimicking me. Almost every day if she is awake when I get ready she comes in the bathroom and wants to take part in my “beauty” ritual. She wants to sample this or try on that. “Can I have that eye stuff, mom?” or “Lipstick, please, please, please.” I know she’s too young for make-up but to know she wants to be like me makes me smile a little. So occasionally I will give in and dab a little on her. However, lately I had been hesitant to do so. It wasn’t about her age, though. It was more. I started thinking about the products I was putting on her and if they were really safe for her. This was before I had ever heard of Beautycounter. I struggled with wanting to watch her smile, and if I was doing what was best for her and this is where my next why fell right into place.

3. CANCER! Yes, in my book it’s an all caps BAD WORD! I hate the thoughts of it, the fear of it, the name of it. With my family history as well as Tommy’s family history, it is something I think about and pray about a lot. I know that there are things in our foods we eat, our drinks, our every day products, and even the air I breathe. I am slowing working on making healthier choices for our family in all those ways. But until I started putting make-up on Faith, I had never considered the fact the the products I put on my skin everyday are full of harmful ingredients. Amazing how our concerns for our children open our eyes more than concern for ourselves. Peyton has always had sensitive skin and I had always thought about the products I put on him, Faith has had weird reactions to sunscreen so I have also been cautious there, but make-up? Lotions? Shampoo? Nope never considered that I was putting harmful chemicals on my skin of my children’s which then makes its way into my bloodstream. It’s always what we don’t know that gets us.

Then it happened! I had already been pondering these things when a friend that I trust posted a few facts on Facebook and got my attention. I wasn’t aware that the FDA doesn’t regulate what goes into our cosmetics and also can’t recall them if they are harmful. I wasn’t aware of the chemicals that were seeping into my bloodstream on a daily basis.

I was aware that I could make baby steps to be proactive in preventing cancer in my life and my childrens. This is my baby step. Beautycounter has the strictest screening process in the cosmetics industry. They are working very hard to put safe and beautiful products into our hands. Products that still have great results without the unnecessary harsh chemicals. Products I can feel confident in sharing with my 5 year old when she asks. No secret ingredients. Complete Transparency.

So even if you choose to never use Beautycounter products, please at least choose to be informed about the secrets and harm behind the ingredients you use on a daily basis.

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Daily Dose

Luke 4:42 “Early the next morning Jesus went out to an isolated place.”

Luke 5:16 “But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.”

Jesus, God in a human body, isolated himself and prayed. How much more do we need to know? This morning as I read this I began to think about it. For a long time I got up and did life on my own. I didn’t get up early and seek God. I didn’t spend my time with Him, seek His forgiveness on a regular basis, study His words to me, or give Him all my problems or praise. I can tell you that it’s not the same life. I now struggle to gain back that close relationship I once had. I feel distant and disconnected. But I’m getting back there. Then I read this this morning during my devotional time. WOW! How could I just a sinner not realize the strong need I have for God on a daily basis? Even Jesus needed His quiet time seeking His father and He was God!

As I read it and thought about it I began to wonder why Jesus would need to pray, why He would need to isolate Himself, what did He pray about. I will never know the true answer but here’s my thoughts if you care to know them. He was here on earth in man’s body. The Bible clearly shows us earlier in Luke that Jesus faced temptation just as we do, so I’m guessing the temptations were the same types we face today.

Strength? I imagine He got weary; weary from the travel and the work He had to do, weary of dealing with the religious leaders constant testing and hypocrisy, weary from the knowledge of what was ahead. He needed that time alone to pray to His father, to talk about His struggles and request strength for the day ahead of Him, strength to teach effectively reaching the masses, strength to face the naysayers, strength to resist the temptations that would come in it all, strength to not lose His temper.

I know that I need God’s strength to face the challenges of each day. Sometimes I feel the energy is zapped right out and I need the strength just to put my feet on the ground and carry forward. I need strength to teach my children effectively, strength to love them deeply, strength to do the housework I sometimes hate, strength to not lose my temper when I’ve told them 500 times in just 2 months to not throw stuff over the balcony and then the blanket comes flying over the railing onto my coffee mug, spilling it all over the floor, couch, and just barely missing my computer as I sit here and type. Yes that JUST happened. Even though my day looks nothing like Jesus’ did, I NEED strength.

Pride? I mean really don’t you think if Jesus was man that He had some good reasons to walk tall and let His pride get the best of Him. This man’s walking around touching people and they are immediately healed. He’s speaking to demons and they can’t even fight Him, He’s making fishnets so full the boats almost sink. He’s got masses of people following Him around leaning on every word He speaks. If that was us, it would be easy to fall into that look at me, look at what I did state of mind. I think Jesus struggled just as we do so I think in His quiet time maybe He prayed for God to help Him remember by whose power these things are done and for God to help Him remain humble. I want so badly to do God’s work, I want to serve Him. I want to see unwanted and neglected children loved and cared for, I want to see hungry people fed, I want to see the sick healed. But if I’m the person God uses to do these things I want to do them in His power and remain humble in my acts. I don’t want to become proud and boastful. That will take seeking God daily because our human nature drowns in pride.

Fear? I can’t imagine as a person walking the earth daily knowing that I was going to be arrested, beaten, spit upon, and crucified and not being terrified. We know He begged God to take that burden from Him, so I’m guessing He was afraid. I’m sure He prayed daily for God to give Him peace over it and take away the crippling fear that could have prevented Him from doing as He needed. Knowing that was your future could cause you to never want to leave home, to never get out of bed hoping to prevent anyone from finding you. Yet He continued daily walking towards the cross so we could be saved. He walked to the cross so we could have peace in place of our fears. I NEED peace daily…I need the weight of fear and worry replaced with His peace. I won’t find that without my alone time seeking Him.

Anger? Can you imagine being in Jesus’ shoes? You are touching people and they see for the first time, you speak and they walk, you create enough food to feed the masses, and yet there are these people in the crowd who KNOW the scriptures yet stand strongly against you. Not only did they stand against Him they used HIS scriptures against Him to test Him. We see His temper in the temple when He starts flipping tables, so I am guessing He had to pray daily not to let His temper get the best of Him every time the priests stood in the crowd with their boastful attitudes. We think we deal with some idiots sometimes and our temper starts to take control (on the phone with customer service representatives for multiple companies, on the road with people who don’t know what a turn signal is, I could go on and on), imagine dealing with these arrogant people. He needed time with His father to calm His spirit and fight His anger.

I’m sure there were many other things Jesus faced and struggled with that caused Him to seek that time along to be with His father. If He needed that, how much more do I NEED to seek quiet time with my Father on a daily basis. Again He was God in man’s body, I’m simply a sinner. I can’t do this life alone, I am weak, I am afraid, I can be prideful, and I can lose my temper way too easily. I NEED God to give me His strength, I NEED His peace, I NEED Him to help me remain humble, I NEED Him to help me control my anger…DAILY! I need to withdraw and be isolated before I do anything else to start my day. I NEED my daily dose of God to get through the day ahead.

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Don’t Go Near

Proverbs 5:8-9 “Stay away from her! Don’t go near the door of her house! If you do you will lose your honor and will lose to merciless people all you have achieved.”

Wow! You are already saying to yourself that this doesn’t apply to you. You aren’t going near any immoral woman’s door. But take a second and replace the woman this is talking about for just a second. Let’s replace her with temptation in general. Maybe your weak spot isn’t women, maybe it’s a drink without self-control. Maybe it’s the intense need for success at any cost, maybe greed. Or maybe you are a woman and it’s the desire for Christian Grey. OUCH! I know I just lost half of you. I’ll probably be deleted from your Facebook, but stick with me here.

You see, I’m not going near an immoral woman’s door either yet this verse spoke to me. We aren’t just told to stay away from that which has the power to destroy us we are told not even go near to that door. We are told we will lose everything we’ve gained. Our honor.

How many of you know a person who has had an affair and you still look at that person with the same respect you had for them before you knew? How many simple temptations have cost someone everything.

An example, I know of an instance where a business conference and dinner was taking place. A man was there who had worked hard to get as high up on the ladder with his company as he had. He had respect, people who looked up to him, followed him. He also probably knew that if he started drinking he would lose self-control. He drank before coming down for dinner, then at dinner a few

more. Now I’m not saying you can’t enjoy a drink but he went near a door he shouldn’t have. He neared the door of lack of self-control. He became drunk and out of control. In that hour he lost it all. He was fired on the spot. He lost the respect, the position, the job he had gained.

Whatever your temptation is, your struggle, your weak spot, STAY CLEAR don’t even go near.

Now many of you are wondering what that has to do with Christian Grey. I haven’t read the books nor do I intend to. I’ve heard enough about them. My question for you is, did that book or movie make you wish your husband was something different? Did it make you desire something he’s not? Could it be a step towards the door of something that could take everything from you? You are already saying what could it hurt, I’m not going to have an affair. Let me just say MOST people who have affairs didn’t go into it thinking they were going to either. It only takes a little desire of something that’s missing for you. It only takes a split second to go near a door and lose it all.

Again, whatever your temptation DON’T even go near the door. Marriages are destroyed, homes broken, children hurt, jobs lost everyday because someone went a little too close.  Someone sought too much success and ignored the needs of their family. Someone though she could fill a spot that wasn’t being fulfilled at home. Someone thought he could make her feel more alive, sexier, younger. Someone thought a few drinks would be fun. Those someone’s are struggling now to regain all they treasured and worked for. Hoping for respect, honor, and trust once again.

Ate you close to the door?

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A Fresh Start

It’s a new year! I’m not the person who makes new year’s resolutions every year. I used to be but then I’d fail in the very beginning. See I struggled in college a lot, because if I ever missed a couple of days and got behind I would get overwhelmed and just give up. I would literally stop going to classes if I got too far behind which resulted in a lot of money being thrown away and it taking me 7 years to finally graduate. So I sort of felt the same way about setting goals in a new year. The first week I blew that diet or didn’t keep my house clean every single day or whatever that goal was, I’d feel overwhelmed with guilt for not meeting those goals and I would quit. But…

This year there is something different. I’m not sure what it is. Maybe it’s location, maybe it’s my new reality, maybe it’s just God changing me. I didn’t really set resolutions, but I had these ideas in my head that I want to do better this year. I’m not seeking perfection because I know I can never achieve that nor do I want to feel that I have. I didn’t really know how to describe what I was feeling at the beginning of the year but through words of a friend and words I’ve seen others saying lately I have it now. A friend said yesterday, “there’s something about a new year, it just feels like a fresh start.” And she was right. This year for me felt like a fresh start. A chance to start new and do things more intentionally. I don’t want to just balance my checkbook by the internet bank statement. I used to balance my checkbook every single week. I knew what was in there and where money was going. Lately it seems it just disappears and I have nothing to show for it except maybe more debt or more stress when it comes time to pay my bills. So my first step I began to live more intentionally was to make a family budget with Tommy on board. To cut out useless spending even if it does mean I have to do more cooking (that one actually helps my second step). Sure we can still enjoy a meal out once a month or something if it’s in our budget but if not plan on eating at home. To pay off debts we owe and owe on nothing except our house(s).

Next I wanted to be more intentional with my health. As if my love for baking had not already started helping me pack on a couple of pounds, the stress, and what I don’t like to admit (depression) of this move really added a few pounds. That in turn only adds to stress and depression due to lack of self confidence. So I had already made up my mind to make a few changes. I have only had coke once since Christmas and it was a slip up I had actually forgotten until I started writing this. I did have a coke when we went out to eat with my mother-in-law. So I cut out sodas, Tommy actually agreed to do the same which in turn not only helps me and him, but now our kids aren’t always popping the top on a can (this also helps the waste of our budget). So it became water for me, which turned into water and sweet tea for him. Then some friends started a facebook group to help us stay accountable in our work outs. I actually set goals at the beginning of the week and I missed my first week, but didn’t quit! That’s big for me. I’m trying to cook a little healthier which is hard to do in this household. But I’m finding that because I am working out and eating healthier, I am also encouraging Tommy to do the same! Even my kids have been choosing fruit for a bedtime snack for the last week. 

Now’s where I fell short. I set these goals to be more intentional about my health and our budget but I left out the one thing I should be most intentional about. Sad to say I realized it yesterday morning when I actually had to go out in the freezing cold to get my Bible out of my car. This was a Thursday. My Bible had been in there at least since church on Sunday right? WOW. How did I decide to balance my checkbook weekly, budget better, exercise daily, and eat healthy but forgot to make it intentional to live out my faith. As of yesterday that changed. My Bible and my journal have been my strongest connection to my strength through many trials so how did I let that fall by the wayside. There is a book that tells me how to do life intentionally. There is a strength that will help me get through those days when I don’t want to exercise and eat healthy. There is a provider who will give me wisdom in spending and wisdom to budget and live life to it’s fullest. How did I get so far from Him? Well I’m back. I’m making it intentional to open my Bible every morning, study His guide to life for me. I’m making it intentional to get out my journal and write and pray. That my friends is a fresh start. I don’t have to feel guilty about what I failed at because His grace covers it all if I let Him. His mercies are NEW EVERY MORNING. So every day is a fresh start.

Maybe today you are ready for that fresh start. Ready for His grace to cover you. Ready to just get back on track. Well it’s a new year, a new day, and His mercies are NEW! Fresh! I’m walking in that today! This is my fresh start and with Him, if I walk every day in His newness, He will see me through all of the other things I want to be intentional about.

This morning I read these verses. “But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like.” James 1:22-24. I want to look deeper than just at my face in the mirror. I want to see what God sees. I want to know His word and walk in it, obey it, live it, every day with new purpose and a fresh start!

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Thanksgiving Day Shopping

So I usually don’t blog to rant and I certainly don’t write to offend anyone but this is something I feel strongly about and today I have to write.

Thanksgiving is a day about giving thanks, we should be doing that every day but we have a day set aside to put emphasis on it. I would be willing to bet almost every person reading this says they are thankful for their family on that day. So here is my problem. Not only have we started putting our Christmas trees up the day after Halloween, decorating, starting Christmas sales, and letting Santa out of the North Pole a little early but now we are almost giving up Thanksgiving Day completely.

Wait, maybe you aren’t. Maybe you get to have your Thanksgiving day and spend all day long with your family that you are thankful for. Maybe you get to eat turkey, dressing, and all that good stuff. You sit and visit with your family, you give your thanks, and then you get out your sale papers and plan which bargain you are going to take advantage of. I’m so glad you get to do that. It’s what every person should have the chance to do on Thanksgiving.

But you see there are those that don’t have that luxury. You see, there are those that don’t get to sit with their family around a table and be thankful because they are having to work. It used to be that although the stores were open maybe early Thanksgiving, they closed early so their employees still had the opportunity to have dinner with their family. But now, because we are so anxious to go spend our money and get the best sale that we can’t wait until 6:00 on Friday morning after Thanksgiving, that doesn’t happen anymore. What happens is those stores that used to close early so employees could observe the holiday are now open 24 hours Thanksgiving Day. They are requiring their associates to work hours that mean giving up that precious time with their families. Parents don’t get to share traditions with their children of holding hands over dinner and giving thanks, children don’t have the opportunity to experience a day I loved growing up. A day that meant an entire day just being with family, not to mention the best meal of the year. We are so busy shopping for what we have all turned Christmas into that we don’t value the things most important to us. Or maybe we value our time and our things just not those of others.

Maybe you disagree, sorry if you do. Sorry if you get out at 5:00 pm on Thanksgiving and set up camp somewhere so you can shop all night until you drop. I live the life that suffers because of the retail madness you all like to call Black Friday, Thanksgiving Sales, and DEALS. My husband has rarely seen a Thanksgiving around the table in the last 4 years on Thanksgiving Day. We have been surrounded by people that never got the opportunity to sit down and have turkey because they had to get ready for the next day or that night. Wake up people. It might be fun for you but it’s costing others precious time with their families.

I will not be shopping Thanksgiving. I hope you’ll join me.

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Like It or Not

Every year my children get clothes passed down to them from other family members and sometimes friends. If not then we go shopping. We are very appreciative of the hand-me-downs, however, I have extremely picky children when it comes to clothes and even food for that matter. When we get the clothes we go through them and the first rule is “if you don’t like it, we are not keeping it.” My reasoning is we have enough clutter and enough clothes in this house for 6, we don’t need to add stuff that is going to sit there and never touch a body. So as the kids go through the clothes they start piles, a like it pile and a not pile. It works out great with mommy stepping in occasionally to sneak out the jeans with the holes in the knees, I won’t let them wear them to school and if they have them that is all they want to wear. We still end up with plenty of great clothes and resist extra overflowing closets.

We have never done this with new clothes before, but I went shopping for the kids some winter stuff this week. I usually let them go along, but shopping with them is a nightmare. So I went alone. I half expected the little princess to wrinkle her nose and reject everything I picked out. She loved them all. My little man, however, was a different story. As soon as he grabbed his bag he said “do I just start a like and not like pile?” I laughed and told him I hoped not since they were all new. I didn’t get that lucky. He immediately pulled a shirt and placed it to the side and told me it was in the “not like” pile. REALLY? When he finished he had three things in the “not like” pile. When I asked what was wrong with them, he replied “these shirts just aren’t my color.” Trying to hold in a laugh I just let him know that I would return them but it wasn’t a trading option.

I tell you all of this because this morning as I thought back on that crazy little moment in my week I thought about how I do this too. I have a “like” and a “not like” pile. We probably all do for different things in our life, but I was thinking about things God wants me to do or say. I wonder how many times He has had a plan for me to do something, or placed it on my heart to speak something, write something, do something, and I placed it in the “not like” pile. You see sometimes I know there is something I’m supposed to do but it just isn’t “my color.” You know, not in my comfort zone, or it doesn’t fit with MY plans. So I just throw it in the “not like” pile and hope someone else will take it. Or maybe I let it slip into the “like” pile but it just hangs there in the closet and I do nothing with it. I never put it on.

When I knew with everything in me that as bad as I wanted to throw the idea of moving to Bowling Green in the “not like” pile, God wanted it in the “like” pile, I went with it. We moved and here we are. There is just one problem, I’m pretty sure that instead of grasping it with all I am and finding the why God wanted me here and the what I’m supposed to do with it, I have secretly pushed it in the “not like” pile in the back of my closet and never put it on. I live each day taking the kids to school, cleaning house, cooking dinner, going through all the necessary motions. But when I sit back and look at it, I tend to avoid seeking why I’m here. I haven’t allowed myself to get too close to anything or anyone. A part of me secretly keeping this place in the “not like” pile, hoping one day Tennessee will be back in the “like” pile and up for grabs. But the truth is,  I do like it here. I love the town, the convenience, and the people here that I have met are wonderful. I’ve made friends and the kids love it here. I just haven’t truly grasped the idea of why I’m here. So today, I have to pull this Bowling Green outfit out of the closet. I have to search it over. I have to seek out WHY God wanted me here. I know He worked out every single step to bring me here. So today I have to choose to put what He wants for me in the “like” pile.

I’m guessing that there are many other things in my life that I need to pull out of the “not like” pile and follow what God wants for me and place many of those things I “like” in the other pile because they slow me down. Just a thought but is there something in your life that God wants you to throw in the “not like” pile so you will follow His will? Is there something He has placed before you, and now you have to decide which pile to place it in? If He placed it there, I believe putting it in the “like” pile and wearing it to the best of your ability is the best decision.

He knows you, He knows me, He knows our weaknesses, our strengths, our comfort zones, and our mountains left to climb. He knows we are capable of things we can’t even comprehend. He will be our voice when He wants us to speak. He will be our guide when we are lost. He will be our comfort when we can’t seem to raise our heads up out of bed. He IS and ALWAYS will be what we need.

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Measure of a Woman

Today I saw a video that I very much needed to see right when it came across my Facebook newsfeed. I shared it and tagged my nieces in it and found that at least one of them needed it at that exact moment too. As I thought about the message of the video, I had so many things come to mind so I decided to write. Unfortunately it couldn’t be done right away or this post would have probably turned out much better, but I feel compelled to write it anyways, even if 7 hours late. I’m sharing because the message of this video was powerful and I think every pre-teen, teenage girl, and woman should see. I will be sharing the link at the end and I encourage you to take time to watch it.

So here is what it made me think about. How do I see myself? How do I measure my worth? Is that what is important? I think of some thoughts I’ve had recently, as well as some of friends around me. I only share because when I hear my friends, I know I am not alone. I’m not the only one that sees something different in the mirror. What do we measure ourselves by today?

I look at Pinterest and I become a bad mom, an unorganized mess with no fashion sense, a terrible housewife, and terribly unhealthy and out of shape. I look at magazines, internet, and TV and my self image becomes terribly distorted. I’m in no way beautiful. I listen to words of others around me and I become some of these same things. I know I’m not alone when a beautiful friend, and amazing mother puts herself down because she hasn’t had family pictures done in far too many years and thinks she needs Botox. Too many times I struggle with feeling like I’m never good enough, never beautiful enough, never strong enough, never organized enough, never disciplined enough, never creative enough. These thoughts come from so many places. It’s how I measure myself. I measure by what others are doing, how others look, how society thinks I should be.

But is that who I am? Is it how I should measure myself? NO! I am the daughter of a King, so are YOU. I am treasured. I am loved. I am worth a man giving His life for me. I am beautiful. I am strong. I am what He created me to be. Yes, I still need to work to become more like Him. But I am HIS! HE LOVES ME! HE KNOWS EVERYTHING ABOUT ME AND STILL CALLS ME HIS OWN.

Now go watch this video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uWi5iXnguTU

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Dieting? I’m no good at it!

Okay, so in approximately 3 and a half weeks I will head to Chicago to my beautiful friend’s wedding in which I will put on a beautiful dress and be a bridesmaid for what I’d guess will be the last time ever. Sounds fun and exciting. The problem is we tried the dresses on in July, right about the time of the buying and selling of a home, buying and selling of vehicles, and uprooting and moving to a new place.

I don’t know what you do when you are stressed but I eat! And I’m not talking fruit and veggies. I’m talking cupcakes and brownies, cookies and candy bars, Little Debbie becomes my best friend. So needless to say when I put that dress on yesterday to have my fitting, it was a little snug. I have been running/walking when I can crawl out of bed early enough, shooting for 3 times a week. The exercise part is not really the problem. It’s the eating that gets me. I know I need to shed a little in the stomach area and the legs wouldn’t hurt to be trimmed down either. So I try to eat healthy, but I’m not very good at that either because I don’t like to cook two meals a night. The harder I try to cut back on eating the more my brain screams “CHOCOLATE, I WANT CHOCOLATE.” To which I respond by digging in the snack drawer.

So today I remembered my beautiful sister-in-law telling me about a 7 day cabbage soup diet. Hmm…I could make that and it would already be ready so I would only be cooking one meal a night. I go to the grocery store, buy the stuff for the soup and a little bit of fruit. Here we go, I come home chop the vegetables, and start cooking. I munch on a few strawberries. My stomach starts growling, ugh, this soup takes forever to cook. Hmmm.. maybe I should just eat a bowl of cereal and start tomorrow, I’m starving. Yes that’s what I will do. I’ll just eat light today. Down goes the bowl of cereal. Soups done. Well let’s try this stuff and see how it is. YUCK! I love cooked cabbage, and I love peppers and onions, I like celery just fine, and tomatoes as well. My problem! You can’t season anything enough for me without salt and the ONE BIG RULE! NO SALT!

So I keep trying to convince myself I’m going to do this, the thing is the more I want to do it and the more I think about it, the more I crave other things. Yes, chicken casserole for dinner with some homemade macaroni and cheese for dinner is exactly what I will cook. It’s in the oven and on the stove as I write.

Okay, so T  took over the computer last night before I could post this so here is what happened. I ate the casserole and the mac and cheese and I loved it! I wanted seconds but I refrained. However, there is a dish of it left in the refrigerator and I fully intend on that being lunch today. So, with that being said, waffles sounds like a great breakfast.

Oh who am I kidding, I’d be better off to not think of dieting to get into that dress or it won’t fit at all! As I said, I’m no good at it!

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A lot!

I don’t really even know where to start today. I’ve been wanting and needing to blog since our move and before, but have just been really busy. So I decided that I’d take a few minutes and just list a few things that have happened and are going on in my head and life to catch up and then I’ll try to do a better job of blogging regularly. So here goes a really quick round of what’s on my mind today.

Our house sold FAST! We packed with the help of family FAST! We took a little longer than planned to get our house here closed, which resulted in living in hotels for a little less than a week. We said our goodbyes to our wonderful friends in Mt. Juliet and Lebanon. That was TOUGH! We left behind some AMAZING friends there. =( We moved another whole hour away from family.=( This and Peyton starting school has made visiting home much harder. My parents came and helped unpack our first couple of days. They really are AMAZING parents! Peyton started Kindergarten and made this mom so proud! That first day was really hard on both of us. I must have looked awful when I left his classroom because someone from the school took time to call me and let me know that he was doing just fine. Then two of my brothers and their families came for a weekend and we had a GREAT time with them. The kids were exhausted to say the least by the time Monday rolled around. Faith started a wonderful Mother’s Day Out program two days a week and did not even cry when I dropped her off. If you really know us, you know that’s HUGE! Then either because we had lived in houses that we didn’t paint for 7 years, we decided this one needed our personal touch. After deciding to do it myself colors were picked and wow, this place could cheer anyone up! I can’t wait to share with you all when it is completely done. Let’s see, we made new friends because I’m weird and don’t care to drive up to someone putting their kid on a bus and express our need for friends. Thankfully instead of her thinking I was a little on the crazy side, we have since enjoyed play dates and our first ever family and friends Minor League Baseball game watching the Hot Rods play from our own suite. I have only baked once and it was a disaster, but today is a new day and experimenting as I type. I really miss baking with my beautiful friend Dina but we still share ideas on the phone. It’s just not the same, but it’s better than nothing. So today I experiment with vanilla spice cupcakes and brown sugar frosting. YUM, it smells so good in here right now. I suppose I will share them with the neighbors that have shared cinnamon chocolate rolls, and the ones that gave us banana nut bread, and of course with our new friends. Who knows what I’ll do with the rest, I can’t eat them. My bridesmaid dress just arrived and I’m already thinking I better get back to dieting and running or I won’t fit in it. I’m scared to even put it on yet!OH AND PEYTON ALREADY GOT AN AWARD AT SCHOOL! I’m so incredibly proud of him. Brooke also started cheerleading and to hear the story told, she was so excited the firs game that she was ready a whole 2 hours early. =) Rex is playing flag football and as you can all imagine, is doing a great job at it. Okay, I’m sure I’ve bored you all to just past crazy so I’ll go now. Next time I hope my post will be more entertaining and not just a catch you up!

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