Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Little Pre-Halloween Fun!

Okay so I don't have much time but I felt like it had been far too long since I'd gotten a blog out. (Blame that on my new Netflix obsession with Royal Pains and Little Man's penchant for only napping in my arms...still.) I would love some mama advice on how to get your little ones to sleep solo! I have a stubborn one I tell ya...ven in a deep sleep he gets madder than a hornet when you put his sweet little self down so you might be able to get something done. The audacity of us mamas trying to do anything other than focus on our cherubs! ;)

ANYWAY, I have some exciting posts planned on marriage and mama moments but I might not get those from my head to the keyboard until sometime near 2020. So, until then, a couple of cute snapshots of my little loves at our church Halloween party this morning. My sweet Ladybug and my Little Lion...dressed as their nicknames. :)

What are your kiddos dressing up as this year? If you were their size now, what would you want to dress up as? (I feel like what I would pick as a "grown up" verses what I would pick if I was a cute and cuddly toddler might be different). Whatever you are doing, I hope you and your kiddos have a safe and super fun Halloween and make great family memories together! :)

This week I am linking up with Mom's Morning Coffee!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Be. Not. Afraid.

There are wars and rumors of wars. There are hurting people who can't find any way to deal with their pain except to hurt others. There are natural disasters. There are evil dictators. There is hate. There is chaos. There is jealousy, zealously misplaced religious fervor, anger, and leaders who will do anything to maintain or gain control. There are tests that come back positive. There is incurable disease. There are tragic accidents. There are feelings of hopelessness, anxiety, and fear. The world does not always feel like a safe and happy place. And yet, in the darkness, a small voice whispers, "Be not afraid."

Recently I have been reminded of the freedom that comes from letting go of fear. I am a closet (and sometimes not-so-closet) worrier. I can worry about just about anything and turn the best of times into anxiety-laden experiences. Really healthy, I know. And in the midst of finding hundreds of things to fear, some valid and some not so much, I have been finding as of late that I don't want to be afraid anymore. I'm seeing all the ways fear has hijacked my life and really, I'm over it. Too often fear has sneakily reworked itself into something less concrete...a need for control, overbearing love, perfectionism...but these masks are just as stifling as flat-out fearfulness, and often I don't even see them for what they are. In fact, at times I convince myself that these fears are actually a thing to be proud of. How many times have I disguised fear for my child or my marriage or my finances as me being "diligent"? Diligence is important, but what is my motive? Am I acting out of wisdom or am I acting out of fear?

I love the verse in Matthew 10:28 when Jesus is getting ready to send his disciples out on their own. He knows they may encounter some pretty serious animosity and he doesn't try to sugarcoat what's going to happen. Instead, he says this: "Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell." I get that this verse can sound a little, well, daunting (what with the whole foreboding hell talk and all), but I don't think this verse is supposed to be taken as a threat. Rather, I believe Jesus is using it as an encouragement that no matter what happens in this crazy world there is one thing that cannot be taken away from his disciples, or from us. Even in the most terrifying of circumstances our hope doesn't lie in this unsteady world. Our hope lies in Jesus. Therefore, when we boil it all down, who do we have to fear but God?

When I imagine living an unrestrained life of fearlessness it puts new breath into my lungs. The things I would do! The adventures that would find me! The people I would meet! Can you imagine?! I think Yann Martel had it right when he wrote: "I must say a word about fear. It is life's only true opponent. Only fear can defeat life. It is a clever, treacherous adversary...It goes for your weakest spot." (Life of Pi) How many times have I let fear defeat my life? I'm not sure what it all means, but I am determined to walk the path laid before me and, Lord-willing, become the brave, selfless, courageous person that God intends for me to be. I may never skydive or intentionally lie down in a pit of spiders (I mean, I want to be courageous, not crazy!) but I can, with God's help, become a person who fears Him alone.

Join me on this journey if you will. If anxiety or distress or any of fear's various forms hold you hostage, you are not alone. What is it you need to let go of so that you can grab a hold of what God has set before you?

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Creating Autumn Memories (my bucket list)

Okay ya'all, as many of you well know, I love lists. So it shouldn't come as any surprise to you that when I saw someone create an Autumn Bucket List I absolutely HAD to follow suit! So here you go, in no particular order, all the fun things I want to accomplish this fall!
  • Go to the local Fall Festival Did this over the weekend with the fam, great way to welcome fall! :)
  • Take my little one Trick or Treating (for the first time!!!)
  • Take lots of fall walks (and collect lots of fall leaves)
  • Laugh a lot
  • Make pumpkin muffins to share
  • Get matching costume pictures of my littles (and, if I can swing it, hubs and I too...all decked out in our superhero wear)
  • Make homemade applesauce (Mmm! The smell is probably directly sent from good!)
  • Paint pumpkins with my wee ones
  • Get together with friends
  • Burn lots of fall-scented candles (and maybe listen to Trace Bundy music while I'm at music says fall to me like his guitar playing)
  • Make and send out my holiday/thankful cards
  • Rake up leaf piles and jump in them (take pictures)
  • Have a movie night with my little family and watch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, complete with pajamas, treats, and snuggles!
  • Spend time with extended family
  • Cook up some delicious fall-inspired stews
  • Create a thankfulness tree
  • Visit a petting zoo (and if we have any, an apple picking orchard)
  • Celebrate Thanksgiving Day with family and good food...wear pajamas far too long the next day
So there you have it...some of the fabulous reasons I absolutely LOVE FALL!!! Look at all the great stuff that can be done!

What do you like best about fall?  

This week I am linking up with We Are That FamilyMessy Marriage, Simple Moments Stick and Mom's Morning Coffee!