8/29/2014

Life is short, but sweet for certain

Hey friends, I'm so glad to be writing in this place today. This past week was something else, let me tell you. Let's just jump right in, shall we?

Last Friday I got a call about 3 in the afternoon that my papa was being rushed to ICU. He had been in the hospital struggling with a lot of things, but the big issues were a failing liver and fluid on his lungs. Last weekend was a total blur, remember my post last Friday where I said we had many things to celebrate that weekend? Well, we didn't get to do much celebrating. But I can't tell you how thankful I am that I was able to be with my family every step of the way once papa was moved to ICU. Things got worse over the weekend and we were told Sunday that there was nothing else the doctors could do for him and it was just a waiting game. I have never felt so helpless, been so exhausted and mentally maxed out in my entire life. We were at the hospital day and night, just watching sweet papa lay in his  bed and take breath after breath. Heaven opened up and the angels sang papa home at 1:15 in the afternoon on Monday. We were all standing beside his bed when he went to be with Jesus. It was the toughest moment of my life, but looking back now, it was a glorious moment in heaven.



I mentioned last Friday that I hoped to share some home photos with you this week...but as you can tell, my mind was occupied by other things. Trying to get funeral arrangements and cemetery plots and everything else in between is exhausting. But, I hope to be back on schedule with those posts next week, if I can get my life together this weekend, LOL!

Ok, so moving on to another life changing moment since last Friday....

I actually can't believe that I'm writing this, but here we go. 

I quit my job. 

And it was one of the hardest things I've done. I truly value my job and especially the people I work with. It has been so integral coming right out of college and being able to contribute to my family's income and enjoy my work atmosphere. It is really difficult leaving, no if's and's or but's about it. However, my job wasn't in my field of study and wasn't what I saw myself doing forever. 

Enter a Sales Associates & Event Specialist position at a local event and wedding venue. I was offered this position and after SO much thought and even more prayer, decided to take the position. I don't know what the road ahead looks like, but I do know that this is a field I am extremely interested in and will enjoy. It's hard to leave a position with incredible security, set hours, etc. to jump into an industry that is gogogo nonstop with crazy hours. But when you see an open door that the Lord has presented you with, you walk through it. And that's what I'm doing. 

I'm excited AND nervous about what the future holds. I'm excited to see how I grow as a person, in my career, and in this industry. I have always been a dream follower, and I'm ready to follow this one.

I begged the Lord to speak to me and be clear about the decision He wanted me to make regarding this job. The day that I got the offer, I went to our guest bedroom and sat on the bed with my fuzzy blanket, Murphy, a candle, a glass of wine, and most importantly Shauna Niequest's book, Bittersweet. The chapter I began that night was entitled Twenty-Five. Here's a little excerpt of what I read,

"Some of the most life shaping decisions you make in this season will be about walking away from good enough in search of can't live without." "What makes you feel alive? What are you good at? What do you dream about?" "Try it, apply for it, get up and do it."

Tears filled my eyes and I looked up and said "I hear you, Lord."

So there you go, the craziness that is my life right now ;) My last day at the firm is next Friday, it's going to be a tough day leaving this place. And a little sneak peek at what my new office view is going to look like...

Kickstand Studio
....looking over the river to the skyline of downtown Columbia, don't mind if i do!

8/22/2014

Celebrations

Happy Friday my friends! Josh and I have some serious celebrating to do this weekend. Yesterday marked eleven months of marriage, today marks a BIG decision that I will be sharing later next week and tomorrow celebrates one year of owning our home. A big weekend of celebrating, indeed. 

We also don't have much on the books for this weekend, and for that I am so thankful. The last two weeks (actually this whole summer, if we're being honest) have been extremely trying and stressful. A lot of things that have not been in our favor, far too much sickness in our families, and many stressful situations have filled the last few months. I desperately need a weekend of uninterrupted time with my husband. 

Uninterrupted time and celebrations? Sign up me STAT!

Last week I got around to photographing updates around our house and since we're celebrating a year of owning, if I can get my act together on editing and posting, I really hope to share our home with y'all next week! 

I guess I should probably also mention the little face lift around this space. Designer Blogs has my heart when it comes to new blog templates and if you've been around this space for any length of time, you know changing things up is my jam. So here we are, with a new layout. I hope you're enjoying it as much as I am.

I'd like to share a few pins that are speaking to me to end this week. Go enjoy your weekend!  








All images via Pinterest

8/15/2014

Marry Up

My husband consistently reminds me why I think he is the greatest being to walk the planet. His heart, I'm certain, is made of gold and his selflessness is admirable. 

I truly married up. 

My grandparents on both sides have been in and out of the hospital over the last month and Josh has made numerous trips with me to visit. My heart almost exploded just the other night as my papa was eating his dinner and having a little trouble. Josh got right up and said "hey papa, let me cut that up for you so you can have a better handle it" and proceeded to cut up and maneuver his food around so he could get it to better. He has fluffed pillows, arranged food carts, initiated conversation to keep their minds off of their hospital stays, and took exact notes as doctors and nurses came in and out of the room so that he could do more research when we got home on their conditions. 

That right there my friends, is a good man. Summer has been an extremely difficult season for us. Actually, looking back, every summer that we have been together has been...shall we say...crappy? ha! I don't know what it is, but summer always brings us difficult situations that are out of our control. Fall has consistently been our good season, so it goes without saying that I'm ready for a new season. Although summer has been hard, Josh has kept me in stitches laughing, has gone above and beyond with his duties around the house, has been an encourager and supporter, and has granted all of my cuddling requests. What can I say, this girl loves to cuddle! 

Thank you, Lord for sending me such a good man. I am so appreciative. I hope everyone in the world finds what I've found in my sweet Josh. 

8/12/2014

Choosing Your Yes

As I was making my morning commute through the dense fog that surrounded downtown, I was crossing over the bridge and listening to Christian radio when they started discussing Lysa TerKeurst new book "The Best Yes"Clearly, the Lord was ready to speak to me this morning.  

I am a "yes" girl. I try to say yes to everything and everybody. It's one of my biggest downfalls. You ask me to do something, as long as I don't already have something planned in that exact time frame, I'm most likely going to try and make it happen. I could have a mile long list of things to do on the day you need me, but I'll squeeze every minute out of every hour of that day to make sure I can please the person that has asked me to do something. 

It's a dangerous trap to fall into, one that I feel pretty certain when I say, we've all been there before or are there now. Lysa said on the radio this morning there were three things you needed to evaluate before saying "yes": 

dread
drama
disappointment 

She indicated that if you feel any of these three things immediately after being asked to do something, go somewhere, participate in something, you need to seriously consider your answer. As far as disappointment goes, if you feel that you will be disappointing someone by telling them no, it's important to evaluate whether you will be able to handle that disappointment better than you would handle the disappointment in other areas of your life if you said yes. 

BAM. Right in my face this morning. I have never thought of my yes or no decisions in that manner, but I can promise that I will from now on.  She said something else that struck another huge cord with me this morning. She said that if you tell someone "I'm not sure, let me think about it" but you're pretty certain that you are going to tell them no in the end, you are allowing that person to get their hopes up and lowering their chances of being able to find someone else to commit to whatever they need. Oh, I am so, so guilty of this. I put off the "no" because I can't bring myself to say it right when someone asks something of me, even though I know it's something that I don't want to do, or don't have the time. But I drag it out, until the very last minute, and it eats me up. It truly does. Not only does it not do me any good, but it certainly isn't doing the other person any good either. If I'm upfront about my answer, whether it be a yes or no, the other person has certainty one way or the other about their needs. 

"Find that courageous yes. Fight for that confident no." -TerKeurst

That quote above I need to write EVERYWHERE so that I can see it all day, everyday. My confidence in making decisions about what others ask me to do is embarrassingly low. I don't like disappointment, I don't like pressure, I don't like conflict and for some reason, in my mind, I think that saying no brings all of the above things. The truth is, there are plenty of things that I have time to say yes to, but in the same token, there are plenty of things that I need to say no to as soon as I'm approached. 

This morning, Lysa reminded me that there are plenty of ways to graciously say no. I would never want a no that came from my mouth to be malicious or make the person asking feel like their project or request isn't good enough. Graciously saying no means saying, "I appreciate you thinking enough of me to ask , but I know that right now I don't have the time that you need to dedicate to x, y or z, to make it great and I know that if you ask someone that has the time, they will do a great job for you." 

Whenever I'm spread too thin, it is clear to me that the time that I spend with the Lord begins to waiver. It goes without saying that I don't need to let that happen. And if it takes me having to fight for a confident no to protect my quiet time with the Lord, then I'll have to find my courageous yes. 

I think, for me, it will take one good time of being upfront about my yes and particularly my no, when a request or situation arises, where I can exercise this way of approaching decisions; then I will know that I'm capable of not putting myself through the dreaded "I'll let you know" and the days that follow of me mulling over how I'm going to tell the person no, but instead being forthright with my decision and being clear and concise, right from the beginning. 

I know this is going to be very hard for me, but it's something that will greatly benefit me. And after hearing Lysa this morning, I think her book would be a wonderful one for me to add to my collection. Any help I can get in this department, I don't need to pass up! It's funny that this message was on the radio this morning, now that Josh and I are Youth Directors at church, as you can imagine, we get a lot of requests to do things. And we simply can't do everything. If we are continuously saying yes then our marriage suffers, our time dedicated to the youth suffers, our personal time suffers. Everyone needs a bit of time each week that isn't filled with anything except quietness and rest. 

Lysa tweeted a plethora of fantastic quotes this morning on the Proverbs 31 Ministries twitter page. I encourage you to go check them out, they have truly refreshed me this morning. Here are just a few of my favorites: 





There are plenty of things that I can say yes to, things that I am excited to say yes to. But, I can't and won't ever be able to please everyone. There's power in a firm no when it's needed. Through a little evaluation and confidence in your decision, there lies freedom. 

8/07/2014

List Making


In college I was a big list maker. Because of the five million things I had to do on any given day, if I didn't have a list, I don't know how I would have made it. After graduating, I kind of put my list making to rest. I'd make one every now and again, but then I'd forget and leave it at work or forget and leave it at home, you know where I'm going with this...I was always forgetting them and therefore, I just quit making them. 

I'm just going to put it out there that not making lists is a bad idea for me. 

I get to work in the mornings and I'm frustrated because I forgot to bring something with me or do something I needed to do before I left the house. Or better yet, I get in bed at night and THEN the fifty things I needed to do BEFORE going to bed hit me all at once. This all leads to sometimes me being very unproductive, and then when I do make a list...it's a mile long because I've added all the things I've forgotten for days to do. Pitiful, right? 

So I'm back to my list making and keeping up with things going on. My mom recently bought me this great little planner to keep in my purse and I've done a good job of filling it up and writing everything down that we have going on. And now I'm going to start everyday making a list of what needs to get done that day and put it in my planner, so that when I get home, I'll open my planner up and perch it on the counter so that I can't miss it and go down my list, checking off all that I need to do. 

I'm the queen  I used to be the queen of productivity and I need to get back to that. While I love a relaxing evening at home and I indulge in those every chance I get, some days stuff just needs to get done, you know? 

Who else gets joy out of crossing things off of their lists?! I know I'm not alone on that one. 


We had done a few updates to our house lately and I'm excited to share them here soon! Just minor things, but they make all the difference. Here's to hoping you have a happy Thursday and celebrate the fact that it's almost Friday!