Category Archives: Faith

A Simple Plan . . .

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I don’t know about you guys, but I am an avid list maker. I might be bordering on a slight obsession, but, I LOVE lists. Lists are like a perfect outline to the day. They help to keep me on track, and focused (which lately, has seemed harder and harder for me to do.) Lists really speak to my personality as well. I’ve realized that I don’t like a lot of small talk. I like to get right to the point and cut out the fluff. Lists help me to do that. They easily pull out the meat, and leave the fluff behind.

At the start of the New Year I began journaling again. I used to journal regularly in my teenage/ young adult life. I still have my first diary (and years of subsequent diaries that followed). My first diary was a gift given to me in the 5th grade and it really started my love of writing and working out life’s problems with words, so it feels really good to be back at it again. I can’t tell you how therapeutic it is for me to take pen to paper and create. Be it with words, pictures, sketches or doodles. My journal has it all. The best thing about it is that it has become a place of dialogue between God and I. In my younger years, I did a lot of recording of things that were going on in my life. There were quite a few pleadings to God about certain boy crushes, or items of clothing I wanted as well. But journaling in my later years has taken on such a different quality. I ask a lot of questions in my journal, and the best part about it . . . I get answers! Sometimes I ask the same questions over and over, until the answer is very clear. But quite often, the answers just come, and I just know. The reason I am sharing all of this with you is because today I got a late start and only had a few minutes to spend in my journal. I’ve been wrestling with working on a few different projects and feeling overwhelmed with what to tackle first and how. Today when I sat down with my journal, I was given a plan. This plan may not be for everyone, but I do think it is relevant and something that we can all keep as a guide when working on projects that have been placed before us. Especially in times of overwhelment (is that a word? If not, I’m making it one:)

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Here is the simple 3 step plan I was given::

1.  Continue to do the things that have been placed before you. Daily move toward your goals. Doing your part, leaves room for Him to do His part.  Remember, baby steps are still steps!

2. Bring every thought captive. Who is the author of your thoughts? Is it good? Is it in love? Is it beneficial? Immediately discard the thoughts that do not fit in these categories.

3. Walk boldly up to the things you feel challenged by. You will find they are nothing more than empty fears, easily conquered with the Father at your side. In other words, face your empty fears!

And at the end of my 3 step plan God reminded me of one of my favorite scriptures::

Remember:

I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me. | Phil. 4:13

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Thankful Thursdays | 10 Things I am Thankful for Today . . .

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Thank God it’s Thursday! This week seems to be flying by! My days and weeks have been so different since we started homeschooling Reston. The results of homeschooling on my son have been so wonderful in such a short period of time! It really is amazing. It’s funny, although my days are structured differently, I somehow seem to be getting it all done. It doesn’t always look pretty, and my work time is typically not structured the way I like it to be, but when I look back, I can see that I am still making progress.

Next week I will be going to Vegas for a few days to cover the MAGIC show. I’m really excited about this trip. Usually I attend MAGIC for the purposes of sourcing and networking for my own business. But this time I am attending as Press! One of my passions is discovering and promoting new and existing brands, and sharing them with you.  God is putting these opportunities in my path and I am really excited to be able to pursue them!

With that said, I thought that for this Thankful Thursday, I would list a few things that I am thankful for today. I heard a man once say that a blessing is something that means something to you. I feel like I have many blessings to be thankful for. They may not seem like much to others, but I think its always good to take note, recognize and be thankful for the little things.

TODAY I AM THANKFUL FOR:

  1. Reston’s progress and witnessing the return of the joy of learning!!! Super BIG Yay!!!
  2. My family’s health and happiness
  3. My trip to Vegas next week and the opportunity to cover the MAGIC show
  4. My desire + passion to design and create is returning full force. (another Super BIG Yay!!!)
  5. Morning adventure walks with my son! (see photo above ☺ )
  6. My marriage of 11 years. It ain’t always easy, but the hard work is so worth it!
  7. Inside jokes and giggles with my kiddos
  8. My mom and dad being so supportive and helpful with the kids pick ups and drop offs
  9. Being 5 months gluten free. If someone had told me I would be GF a year ago I never would have believed them.
  10. Tomorrow is Friday!!!

What are you thankful for today?

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Attack this Day!

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original artwork by Ayanna Listenbee Anderson

 

Hello beautiful April dwellers!!!! I hope this month finds you living well! Hard to believe it is already April. Spring is definitely in the air. My firstborn will turn 8 years old tomorrow!!! He has matured so quickly in the last few months. It’s amazing to watch, and a blessing to be able to partake in.

On other fronts, God is really working with me on that virtue they call patience. This past month has really been a training ground for it, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. Happy to say I am passing the tests, but it is a minute-by-minute, second-by-second battle. Actually as I write this, I’m not so sure the endurance training I am partaking in is for patience, if I am honest with myself, and at this point in my life, why be otherwise . . . it seems my endurance training is more about letting go and letting God take the reigns. Perhaps it is more a test of faith. I used to think that when you had faith you just didn’t have concerns or worries about your daily situations . . . that you just said to yourself… “No matter, God will take care of it!” What I’ve learned is that that is the correct response, however, you do still have concerns and worries. You just don’t let them hang around as long as you once may have! The concerns, and critical thoughts definitely still pop into your head, but when they do, they should be swiftly dealt with. I do it by telling them to leave and reminding them that God is the source of my supply, and that no weapon formed against me shall prosper!!! These days that’s the way I am handling things. It definitely feels good. But don’t get me wrong, it is still a minute-by-minute battle for me. Does that ever change? Just wondering . . . .

Do you like the image I posted above? I was recently commissioned to create a poster of this quote from an unknown source. I absolutely love this quote. Is this not an amazing way to start the day? I love the idea of attacking something with enthusiasm!!! I made one for my client and myself. Now I have a friendly reminder to look at in the morning when I am getting dressed for the day. What words do you speak to yourself to start your day? Whatever words you choose, I hope they are words of love + encouragement, because you deserve it!!!

Now go forth and ATTACK!!!

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So Fresh & So Clean. Clean.

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Can’t you just imagine waking up and walking out through these beautiful glass doors to this gorgeous garden every morning? I can. Cup o’ coffee in hand. Birds chirping. Thanking God for another day to master my weaknesses. Asking Him to help me to be a blessing to everyone I come in contact with. Aaaahhhh . . . yesssssss . . . I’m there . . . But I’m here. In this house, thanking Him in advance for all that I am. All that I have. & All that I will be.

♥ Happy Friday!! ♥

Simply Put: Change Your Mind!!!

Many of you know that I did not make any New Year’s Resolutions this year. I vowed only to be constant in my awareness of situations and opportunities placed before me, and to live openly in the moment. Well, think of this as icing on that thought. In order to remain aware and in the moment, I know that there is extra daily work I must do (especially since I have not been apt to live freely in the moment for the past 38 years of my life). There is a bible scripture that I refer to that helps me to remain “mentally current” shall we say. The scripture is Romans 12:2. Simply stated it says:

Be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.  –Rom. 12:2 KJV

This is a pretty heavy scripture, there is so much depth to it! Don’t worry,  I won’t get all bible-study on you, but I will say that it is a daily, minute-by-minute task to work at transforming yourself by renewing your mind. There are a number of ways I go about it, and I always start with the word of God. But even before that, I have to remind myself that I have got to actually change. my. mind. That means changing the way I think about things, the way I respond to things, the way I react to situations, etc. As a woman, I find it quite easy to change my mind about many things, but it is harder when it comes to behavior and feelings that are 30+ years old! So what did I do? I made a sweatshirt to remind myself! (I have a hard time doing anything without relating it to fashion in some way). My sweatshirt is a simple reminder to continue the renewing process of my mind. It also reminds me that, with God’s help, I can change my mind.

How do keep yourself on track with your goals?

Embrace Your Individuality!

If there is one gripe I have in this life (and I try not to gripe often, really, I do)  it is that I truly want people to embrace their individuality.

I think this issue holds such a big place in my heart because it is something I struggled with in my younger years, and something I am still learning to embrace every day. (As a child and young adult I suffered from PLMS, also known as Please Like Me Syndrome. It is currently in remission, but I tend to have flare ups now and then.) It is also a necessary ingredient for self confidence, and even true happiness! I find that I am already gently reminding my children to remain true to themselves and to stop being so concerned with what others have. I do this by pointing out the wonderful qualities that they possess, and reminding them that the world is a much more interesting place because we are all bringing different things to the table. My philosophy boils down to this: God created each of us individually; one at a time, with wonderfully unique traits, physicalities, quirks, thought processes, likes and dislikes that are unique to us. Though we may share similarities with friends and family members, we are all individual works of art! Unfortunately, the world seems to suggest that conforming, and following are two really important characteristics to have. While I will agree, it is necessary to conform to laws, rules and regulations in order to keep things running smoothly, I disagree that we should “follow” and place so much attention on what celebrities, sports figures and even our friends are doing. The whole social media concept of “following” has it’s roots in looking to others for acceptance and approval. I sort of struggle with this daily, in trying to build my blog, and readership. I blog because I love it, even without a huge following. I love my readers and I am so thankful for all 16 of you! ☺ And that is what this post boils down to. My message to myself and others is simply this: Be your own Master of Approval. If you believe in a higher power, as I do, seek your approval from God first! Once you have His approval and your own, acceptance and approval from others will just be icing on the cake! (and who doesn’t like a little icing now and then:)

Are you waiting for someone else to give you what you already have?

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