Wednesday, May 11, 2011

You are the Light of the World

For me, it is so hard to not want to fix everything for everyone. Their is so much going around me that just breaks my heart. I am the type of person that can see the pain in others and take it on as my own. I try to help them in any way I can, but no mater what I do I can never heal their pain. I can not make the choices for them or make them see the situation in another perspective. I get so frustrated when others can not see their own mistakes or want to blame the other for all the problems going on in their lives. I cant understand how people can be so selfish or so ungrateful for what they have been blessed with. Then I started thinking, I wonder if others feel the same way about me? Am I allowing what goes on with me or around me to show as though I am ungrateful or selfish? Am I being a light for Christ? In Mathhew 5:14-16 it  tells us that we are a light. A light that is to be seen by the world so that our God will be glorified.

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven." 

Am I glorifying God? I pray that in what ever tiral I am placed in, I give thanks to God. I pray that through His love and grace I can be a light for Him. I pray that others may see that it is not threw anything I have done but threw the Lord. My first reaction when I see others in need is to jump in and help them fix the situation, but maybe it is time for me to step back. For me to focus on being the light God has called me to be. So that through Gods work in me can be seen to glorify Him.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Doubts and Fears

I have been very blessed to be able to stay home with my beautiful children! I try to enjoy the time I have with them daily. Teach them things, play with them, and love them just as they are. Growing up all I ever wanted to be was a wife and a mother. I have just that, but is it wrong for me to want more? More from my self such as a degree, a social life out side of the playground, a hobby I enjoy, or a thinner me? I have struggled with these questions for years. I have heard many answers regarding them as well. Many times when I would hear the answers from others and I would feel so horrible! Like I am an ungrateful mother or a selfish wife. I did not want to be know as that person, I was not going to be ungrateful or selfish. I chose to put my husband first along with my children! I would do all I could do to be the best wife and mother for my family! I made sure their needs were kept and their wants considered. What about my needs or wants? Just saying those words make me cringe because it sounds so selfish. But is it really being selfish if you are taking care of your heart, accomplishing your dreams, or finding your passions? My answer to this question was always yes! Yes it was selfish, yes it was wrong for me to want those things when I have been blessed with such a beautiful family! How could I even consider my wants and needs when I have a family to take care of. Then it hit me, how can I take care of a family if I am not taking care of me?

For years I have allowed my fears, doubts, and others negative judgments to push aside my dreams. In 2003 I planed to move from Arkansas to Missouri to get a degree in the medical field. I knew it was just what I wanted to do after helping a dear friend. She had MS and was living alone. I was asked  to stay with her, to help her with anything she may need. I enjoyed it. I loved getting to know her. I also loved the feeling that I was able help some one. I later let a few people know that I was planning on going to school in the medical filed. Their doubts of me succeeding made me loose my confidence in my self. So I came back to Missouri to be a waitress.  
When Landon was born it was quit obvious something was wrong with his feet. They were curled up and in. We had no idea what caused this. Later on we were informed that he had club feet. Jared and I had maybe heard of this, but knew nothing about it. So I went online to find some information about what I should expect. Their was a lot of the medical information which was great to know. I wanted to know more of what my child was going to have to endure. I then found a few blogs about how to live with club feet. It made me think that I could do something like this such a blogging. I could share my daily struggles about my infant in cast or having to have surgery or how to breast feed your child while they are wearing a bar for twenty hours a day. I thought it was the best idea ever! Something i could be  passionate about. Then I was asked the question...Do you think anyone would really read it? Doubt kicked in immediately! I chose to accept that it was just a silly idea and no one would care to read my thoughts. 
My biggest struggle to date has been my weight. In a previous post I shared how I have struggled with it for most of my life. After I got married I struggled with it even more. My husband was at time vocal about how he would like for me to be "healthy". It hit me pretty hard because I knew he wanted me to be skinny and more attractive. Where we were in our marriage I refused to loose the weight! I knew Jared loved me, but I never felt he loved me just as I was. I was not going to become this thinner me because i didn't believe Jared deserved it. I wanted him to love me for me, not for his idea of how I should be. I chose to stay over weight because of my fears.

I share all these things with you because we all have allowed our fears, our doubts, and insecurity hold us back. We have allowed others to dictate who we should be. Who really needs dreams any ways? Well I know I do! God did not just give me a brain to be wasted, so I have enrolled in school and will be taking summer classes. I might be starting on elementary levels, but I am not going to let that hold me back. I am here blogging my thoughts. People may not care what I have to say, but I am going to continue to write what is laid on my heart. I am on the road to a healthier me! I have joined Slim4Life and I am sure people are thinking "why don't you just eat healthy and exercise?" But I don't care, because I know that I am doing what is best for me! Also, I know my husband loves ME. I am not going to allow my fears and insecurity's hold me back from his love for me. For the first time I am taking care of me and my heart. More importantly, I am doing the things God has called me to do. And it is by Him and only Him that I am able to cast out my fears and doubts. What doubts and fears are holding you back from your dreams?

"I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
Philippians 4:13

Friday, April 29, 2011

I Love a Party!

As a child I had two birthday party's. My first was at Chucke Cheese and then the other was thrown for me at the age of 16 by my family and church. I had always wished I had more birthday party memories. So when I became a Mom I decided that my kids would ALWAYS have a party! Some may say I get a "little" carried away. To me I don't see how you can get carried away celebrating the day a blessing was born! I love to watch my kiddos have  fun with their friends. I also love to see the reactions they have when they see their cake. I do not do store bought cakes. I enjoy coming up with the idea for the cakes and decorating them. I normally have a helper. My mom or a good friend Bobby. They enjoy the cake making just as much as I do! Here is just a few ideas of what we have done for each birthday my children have celebrated!

Annaliese Turned 1 with a Higgly Town Hero birthday party!

Annaliese was rocking to the Doodlebops turning Two!

A Tea Party with Strawberry Shortcake for her Third Birthday!

 Landon's Turning One in the Jungle

Annaliese turned 4 with a Color Party


Landon's 2nd Rocking Party

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Here's to a New Me

Im ready, it is time! I have to loose this weight I have been carrying for years! Over the past 7 years I have said so many times that I will loose the weight. Ive said things like I'm gonna loose the weight before I get married, before I have kids, after I have kids, before our five year anniversary, after Ella, before I get pregnant again, before I go on a vacation, and so many more! I have yet to get where I believe I need to be. I have tried many thing to loose the weight. I have done many diets, changed eating habits for a while, even did a fast. Some things worked for a while, but were never sustaining for me. Since before I was marred I wanted to loose weight, especially before the wedding. I didn't work so hard at that. I was in a size 12 and at the time I felt pretty comfortable with my self.
I didn't really gain to much weight during the first year of our marriage. Just a little before our first anniversary I found out I was pregnant and ended up having a miscarriage. That hit me kinda hard and I ended up gaining about 15lbs before getting pregnant with Annaliese a few months later. During her pregnancy I didn't gain to much weight. I believe I gained around 26lbs. I was told that it was not much at all for your first child, so I thought it would be easy to take off. Yeah right! Soon after having Annaliese I let my self go and was in a size 18, almost in a 20! 
It finally hit me that I had to do something! So I worked to looses the weight and got into a size 14, then I got pregnant. I don't remember how I lost the weight then. Don't know what it was I did different! Maybe it was the fact that I had more motivation? I was not going to get into a size 20 and I wanted to have another child so i had to loose the weight! During my pregnancy with Landon I continued to loose weight till the last three months of it. I gained 11lbs and lost all of that when Landon was born. I breast feed Landon and kept the weight off. 
Till I realized I was gaining weight again. It was coming on fast, especially around my waist. Then I knew it, I was pregnant heading in to my second trimester. During the pregnancy with Ella I was never feeling well so I was not very active. I also ate everything in site cause i craved it. During the pregnancy it was very emotional for me as well, so that did not help my eating. After having Ella I started working out soon after. I did not want to have the baby weight when I didn't have the baby. I was working out about five times a week while watching what I ate. After all I was doing I got discouraged because I did not loose any weight during that time. Not even one pound, I believe I actually gained a few pounds! My jeans were fitting a little better, but not enough for me to go down a size.
I just gave up, I quit caring and I quit trying. So for the past five months I have tried so many things to help me get that jump start. To get that motivation to loose the weight. I know I am not one of those woman that have babies and jump back into their pre-baby jeans. Or have the flat tummy that I once had and will never get back due to having kids. I have a few friends that are like this and it just discourages me so much more. Yes I know they are not me, that's them and how they are made. I just would like to be made that way! Since i am not, I will just have to work hard at it. Im sure I will have to work hard at it till the day I die, but I know it will be worth it in the long run. Not just for my self confidence, but for my health, and also to be a good example for my children.

So the big question for me is how will I loose this weight and keep it off? I am trying to watch what I eat but that even is really hard for me to do. To be honest, I don't like eating much fruit or vegetable. I don't mind salads, but not for every meal. I don't want to cut everything out cause I know that I will just go back to eating unhealthy. I do like eating healthy things, I don't want it to come across that I just eat so unhealthy. I know for me its when I eat and how much I eat. I am taking a mineral multivitamin along with probiotics. I heard that the probiatics could help with loosing weight along with a few other issues I have been having. I do have a treadmill that I will be using when the weather is just cold, hot or to wet for us to get out. I am looking for a double stroller so that I can walk to the park that is about two miles from us or to Target if I need to get a few things from the store. I have all these ideas of what I want to do, what I should be doing. I has just never gotten to the point of really applying them consistently to my life.

Well that is all going to change! I am going to start blogging about my weight loss journey, being honest, not holding back. I am so fear full of this but I believe I need that accountability! If I know their is an expectation of  me and people are watching my every move then I have to. Then I believe that I can achieve what it is I need to do. See I am a type of person that does well under pressure. So I am going to put my self under pressure! I will create an other page for this weight loss journey. I will try to post at the end of every day of what I ate and how active I was. Every Monday I will post my weight, yes my weight! I said I was ganna be honest!  Please feel free to post comments about my progress, I even encourage it! I need to know the truth even if it hurts. You can help also by giving me ideas for healthy meals or different work out methods. I will take any help I can get on this journey! So here i go, here's to a new healthy me!

(May 2nd will be my first entry on its own new page)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Celabrations and More!

Arcade Fire at Starlight Theater

This week has been an exciting week for Jared and I. On Wednesday night we went to go see Arcade Fire at the Starlight Theater. The band is one of Jared's favorite bands! They have many band members and play some very interesting instruments! It sounded amazing outside at the Starlight Theater! We had a great time! Just one more thing to scratch off of Jared's bucket list!

Anniversary Night
 Saturday, April 23 was our six year anniversary! We had planed to get all dressed up and have a date. The person that was suppose to watch the kids got hurt the night before so we had to improvise. I decided to crate our restaurant feel at home! We grilled stakes and asparagus together while eating our salad and bread! We had a great time and it was just what we needed. With all that we have gone through the past year and feeling so distant for years. We felt that this anniversary was more like what our first anniversary should have been like! Also,the food was so yummy!

Easter Sunday

Easter Sunday was not what I had expected. The morning was just crazy cause I had to make food and get us all dressed because Jared was doing sound for the service. Landon was not cooperating, getting into everything and like always I was running late! At church I was not able to enjoy the worship service or the message so I was pretty sad about that! I did enjoy talking with Bobby in the nursery, so that was a plus. Also, had a good potluck lunch talking with more great friends. While driving home I was able to hear some up lifting  music on the radio. It helped me to stop ,and reflect on what Easter is really about! 
After we all had naps we went to Oma and Opa's (Jared's Grandparents) to celebrate the resurrection or our Savior! We had great food, great company and the kids loved finding Easter eggs. We are so blessed to have such a beautiful family. Blessed to have a Father that loves us so much He gave His Son to die for us and rise again.What a day that will be when He calls us home!

 My little Princess

 Such a cheese

 Love these little blessings with all my heart

Friday, April 22, 2011

Love at First Site

I'm sure we all have been asked the question "do you believe in love at first site?" My answer was always no, till I saw Jared!  While attending Calvary Bible College you were required to go to church twice a week so I was in search of a church. Being a student that was new to the state I did not know of any churches around the area. I had gone to few but had not found the right one. I then decided to go to to New Life Community Church with a friend of mine because she needed to see a friend of hers that was visiting from out of town. She didn't have a car so she asked if I could take her. And since I had woken up late that Sunday I had already missed the chance of going with another friend. So I decided to go. After the service I noticed a good friend of mine that I had meet on campus. He knew i was in search of a home church so he wanted me to meet a few families he had drawn close with. He introduced me to everyone but one person. I was standing their talking to someone i was introduced to while my friend went to find this Jared guy. I was standing in the middle of the church aisle when I looked across the room then I saw him, I knew he was the one. I knew Jared was going to be the one I was to marry. I don't know how, but I did! I talked with him for a bit,but all I wanted to do was just leave. So the friend I came with and I left to go back to the dorms. When my room mate got home I let her know the news, that I had found the one I was going to marry. She was excited, then I told her that I gave him my number but if he called she was to tell him I was not here! See Jared was not my type of guy that I would had normally gone for. Sure he was a nice guy maybe even a good friend, but not someone I would have ever thought would be my husband

I started going to New Life with our friend to help with the youth group. After church we would go to the Busses's house to have lunch and to of course watch the football games. At Calvary we were not able to watch TV so we had to go to someones home to do so. Jared was living with his parents at the time, so witch meant I had to hang out with him. He seemed to be a cool guy, pretty smart, and pretty handy for home work. One Thursday night I was desperate, see I was a Friends fanatic. I needed to watch my show and since we could not at school I had to come up with a plan. I called Jared to see what he was up to, we talked for a bit. I was going to ask him if I could come over to watch tv, but I just could not do it. So then plan B, I would just go to Wal-Mart and watch it on their TV's in the store (yes I was desperate, and it was FRIENDS!) So then told Jared I had to go because I needed to go get batteries from Wal-Mart for my alarm clock. We said our goodbyes and I headed to Wal-Mart. I was in the electronics looking for batteries when I heard someone behind me say hi. I remember felling my hear racing! Many question going threw my head in  secs before turning around. I was thinking what do I do, what do I say, oh no how do I look, do I tell him why I am really here, is this really what you what for me God.... I turned around and looked Jared in the eyes and for the first time I knew that this was Gods will. Jared and I talked for a while in Wal-Mart before he invited me over to hang out. Friends was already over, but I didn't care I had just found my best friend.

We never rarely dated, but we were always together. He was the one person that I could be me with and he was ok with that. He opened my eyes to new things. Showed me what a true friend could be like. We had many ups and  many more downs, but during those hard times we chose to stick beside each other as friends. To fight threw what was holing us back from being more. It took a lot of heart ache for us to see what God's real plan was for us. Almost two years after meeting each other he proposed to me, six months later we got married. Since then we have continued to have our ups and downs, many more heart breaks and many tears. But I can honestly say that I would not change one thing about our journey. Not one, because I know that whatever we had gone through or will go through it will only make us stronger. God knew what he was doing when He placed that voice in my head telling me that Jared was the one. God knew what he was doing when He lead Jared up to Wal-Mart just to see me. I am so happy that we allowed God to lead us to each other. Tomorrow it will be six years that we have been married. I am so blessed to say that our love for each other has grown deeper then I would have ever thought. If it was up to the enemy we would have not even gotten married, I would not be making this post. Because of our God we are still together. I don't think I have heard it said better then Chris Tomlin. In his song "Our God" he reminds us of how God is greater and with God on our side who can stand against us. Their have been many things, many people, and even our selves that has tried to destroy us, but with Christ we are standing strong together, we are fighting harder for each other and out of the ash we rise, because their is no one like our God!

 We were strangers starting out on journey.
Never dreaming what we'd have to go through.
Now here we are, and im suddenly standing, at the begging with you.
No one told me I was going to find you.
Unexpected, what you did to my heart.
When I lost hope you were their to remind me.
This is the start!
 (the first verse of the song we danced to on our wedding day)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Safe in Our Fathers Arms

Have you ever been listening to the radio and heard a song that stopped you in your tracks? Its funny how a song can do that. It can remind you of a time with a dear friend,  triggers a smell, or bring you to tears. Well that is what happened to me last night while driving home. We were coming from a friends house and from their house we always pass the road that leads to Ella's grave site. So every time i see that road she is on my mind. Just when we pass the road a song comes on, and not just any song "Safe" by Phil Wickham.

This song was sung by a wonderful friend or ours at Ella's memorial service. The song reminded me of that moment while he was singing, but its not what triggered my tears. The song brought me back to the moment that I was laying in the hospital bed waiting to deliver my little angel. Many people had come to see us, share tears with us, and to pray with us. During those times I was sad, still trying to really understand what was going on in me and around me. Every one was grieving, but to me I didn't understand why. When Jared and every one else heard the news that she was gone, there was an instant loss for them. For me, I still had her, she was in my belly. I could feel her, no not moving but I knew she was there. I could see the out line of her back and her bum sticking out. I had not lost anything!

While laying in bed the day after hearing the news I decided I need to just not think about what was going on around me, so I tuned on K-Love. I heard many songs that reminded me of God's glory and how God is good. But the moment I heard the first line of  "Safe" I just broke. It finally hit me that I had lost my daughter. I now was seeing what everyone else was seeing. In that moment I felt the pain for the first time. The pain of what I had lost and my dreams being shattered. The pain of feeling that God had turned his back on me. Some how through all of the pain I was able to see the real picture and the song helped me to see that.

God had never left me, he was holding me while holding Ella. He made a promise and kept it, we all were safe including Ella. He called her home for a reason, for many reasons that i can now see.  When our whole world was falling apart, we were safe in Gods arms.

The words to "Safe" byPhil Wickham  
To the one who's dreams are falling all apart
And all you're left with is a tired and broken heart
I can tell by your eyes you think your on your own
but you're not all alone

Have you heard of the One who can calm the raging seas
Give sight to the blind, pull the lame up to their feet
With a love so strong He'll never let you go
oh you're not alone

You will be safe in His arms
You will be safe in His arms
'Cause the hands that hold the world are holding your heart
This is the promise He made
He will be with You always
When everything is falling apart
You will be safe in His arms
Did you know that the voice that brings the dead to life
Is the very same voice that calls you to rise
So hear Him now He's calling you home
You will never be alone
These are the hands that built the mountains
the hands that calm the seas
These are the arms that hold the heavens
they are holding you and me

These are hands that healed the leper
Pulled the lame up to their feet
These are the arms that were nailed to a cross
to break our chains and set us free