Exam Time – Practice What I’ve Learned

So this past weekend was my churches Christmas Women’s Event. It was awesome but there was an interesting story for me to get there. I have been doing a lot of study on stress and how to not let things get to me lately. I don’t know about you, but I am one that plans things out to the minute. I know exactly how long it takes me to get from point A to point B and how long something should take. So things go wrong, I get a little stressed out. Of course it was all out of my control so I don’t know why they bugged me so much. I guess I just like to have control so when it’s taken a way, I panic.

Well I have been really trying to fix that. I have been reading Joyce Meyer’s book Overload and she talks a lot just letting things go and rolling with life. Something I would like to think I do but I know I have a hard time with. Now, I am a very resourceful person and will figure out a solution to my change of plans or circumstance but the problem is I will concentrate all day on how the first plan went wrong. The thing is over and done with but I will stress myself out all day because I can’t let go about how my plan was better. Of course many times the new plan was actually better than my original plan, but I will still harbor about how my plans got ruined. Do I have anyone out there that can relate?

So, in Joyce’s book, she had some really great ideas on how to let things go and change patterns in your life to help with stress and coping with stress, and I have been using them. It’s actually quite amazing actually how you feel when you don’t try to control everything. Any way, let me tell you my story on how Satan decided yesterday was the perfect to give me an exam on what I have been learning.

Like I said, yesterday was the Christmas Event and I had been looking forward to this evening for weeks. I had my outfit all picked out and ready to go, I had things all out for my husband as he watched our daughter, and now I was just waiting to get ready to go. Morning of I woke up with this giant pimple on my chin. You know the type that if you keep messing with only gets bigger and bigger? Yeah, that was fun but I wasn’t going to worry about it and maybe it would be ready by the evening. Then the morning goes pretty smoothly as I took my husband to work and went grocery shopping. My daughter wanted to go to the gym but I  told her she needed to do quiet time first so she put herself down almost an hour early so we could go. Nothing to worry about right? A little pimple wasn’t going to ruin my day. Heck, during quiet time I actually got to write two chapters in my latest book I am writing!

Then the fun began after she woke up. See, I needed to take a shower and such to go to the event and I thought we were going to gym so I didn’t take one during quiet time and wrote instead. MY daughter wakes up and suddenly she doesn’t want to go to the gym anymore. Well, she had no choice and, after a yelling tantrum in the car all the way there, she was running into the doors to go play. Normally I would have said “screw it” and gone home but I know at the gym I would get to be able to get in peace and have a long shower.

Once I drop my daughter off in child care, I go to the locker room. I find a locker and try it out since it’s one of those digital ones that the batteries always die in and it worked so I out my stuff in and got ready for my shower. I go to lock it and now the battery is dead. So here I am in the towel and I have to unpack this one and find another. I try two more lockers and the same thing happens. Now I have to say this time I didn’t react the best but I didn’t react harshly. I finally found a working locker and went to take my shower.

I literally had one minute of hot water, and it was slowest time of the day for gym which means no one was there! Where the heck did all the hot water go. So instead of having a nice long hot shower, I was stuck with a cold military one. Can you see where I am saying that it had been exam time because having all these things back to back just seemed too ironic. It seemed like when I failed to get stressed out or mad about thing, Satan just tried another.

Well it didn’t stop at the shower since I just turned the water off and went to put my clothes on. As I was out dressing, my cami somehow snapped across my face. I have never done it before and I honestly I can’t figure out how I did it all together, but I do know this – it hurt really badly. Now I am really catching on to Satan’s plan and the reasoning side is trying to make the choice of let it go and move on or get angry and the reactive side just wants to wants to scream and throw a fit at this point. But I stay with my plan and keep staying clam.

Sadly, the test wasn’t over. Hair and Makeup went wrong and then I literally couldn’t get my bag out of the locker. But, finally, I was dressed and ready to go get my daughter. I sign her out and the topper of the exam happened. I snagged my lace shirt on something completely invisible on the wall. I went over the spot over and over again and couldn’t find anything that could have snagged my shirt. Satan was having such a fit that I wasn’t falling for his games that he snagged my shirt. My reaction? “Oh well, you can see it unless I point it out and, if I try to fix it, I’ll just make it worse.

I could just picture Satan at that point. He was probably kicking a screaming because I had failed his test and I went on to have a lovely evening at the even with my friends and family. But you know what? I felt good because I failed and I knew that God was smiling because I am actually learning from what I am studying.

Now the next time I might completely fail, but in that moment I had victory.

In These Past 25 Years

So this year I had my birthday. Yay! And I am now 25 years old… Yay! I don’t feel that old really. I still feel like a spicy sixteen year old but I am not one anymore. I am a mom and wife. I have gotten a college degree. I am now a homeowner. There are so many changes that have happened for me in these past twenty five years. I have gone from a child to an adult.

I look forward to the next twenty five years for sure. Within that time now it’s crazy to think that my daughter will graduate high school, my husband will retire and I will be an empty nester. Talk about another huge shift in life from where I am now with a working husband, a toddler and a very busy home. But I don’t take any of it for granted since I know how fast everything can be taken away. In a blink of an eye my plans can change and be taken down a different road. So these next twenty five years, I just want to enjoy the journey.

A Stress Free Christmas

There is so much going on right when it comes to Christmas. People have already gone through the annual hunting day of Black Friday and now we are moving forward still looking for gifts for people. But let’s be honest for a moment. Wouldn’t Christmas be souch better without all that hustle worry and stress?

Now let’s get one thing straight, I love getting gifts and I love giving gifts but not at the expense of my sanity. I don’t know how many times I have been told that someone really wants to give a person a gift (or they already bought them a gift) and were stressing that they wouldn’t like it. Is that the point of the gift giving process? No. The point is to give a moment of joy to someone because you thought about them and went through the trouble of buying them something. Now if it’s not exactly their style or what they would want then that is honestly the recipient’s issue because they should be thrilled to have someone in their life care about them enough to do such a thing.

So this post is for both givers and receivers. If you are wanting to buy a gift and you’re stressing about it before you even pay for it, then don’t buy it. Only buy things for people you know are going to appreciate it. And for the receivers, even if it isn’t something that you would buy for yourself, be grateful that your friend loves you enough to get you something. Because Christmas is supposed to be fun and I think that the whole gift giving thing has taken so much away from the joy of Christmas. Don’t let that be the case in your house. Have Christmas be fun and full of joy.

Merry Christmas!

Missing My Country Roots

Now I am going to get all red neck on ya’ll, but I grew up good. I wouldn’t trade my childhood looking back for anything. I am a country girl and my hometown has less than 3000 people in it. I am proud of my roots and will never be ashamed that I didn’t grow up in the city with the “civilized” people. Heck, most of the people I grew up with have more smarts than many people I have met in the city. No offense to anyone. I feel like my country background laid the best foundation it could for me and I miss it. Let me explain.

Don’t ask me how it happened, since I was the horse girl who was only going to marry a cowboy and live on a big ranch, I married a city boy. I mean city boy. He didn’t even know what the word ‘muck’ was. He thought I was cursing. So grant the surprise looks I got when I brought him around town and later married him. Because picture this – five acres, horses, goats, chickens, bunnies, mud, hours of play and anything your imagination could think of. That is my childhood home. I started riding horses when I was nine and continued until my horse past away when I was seventeen. I was pretty much living on my own Heartland Ranch. It was amazing.

Then after my horse died, I went through an identity crisis and started college at the same time. That was when I met my husband and he knew that he had to get me before I came back to my senses and turned into the country girl I really am. Well he did catch me and we got married almost five years ago, but like most newlyweds (especially if you get married at 20 and 21 years of age) you are dead broke. The only place we could afford was in what we called in my hometown ‘the ghetto’. Which was just the city an hour from there where there was so many things within a mile of our first place I didn’t know where to go first. One thing about living in the country you only went to town if you had at least four errands to do. And we haven’t been able to afford to get back to anything close to where I grew up.

Now we live in a suburb and it’s a nice one but I have neighbors I can see. Growing up, our closest neighbor was not in rock throwing distance. So I am having to still get used to their sounds and stuff. But I was listening to country music and it was actually making me homesick . Not to go back to my parent’s house but back to the country. My husband doesn’t know what to think but he does know we can’t stay in the city forever. He might have taken the girl out of the country but he can’t take the country out of the girl. If he tried, I just might have to hog tie him up. But that could be fun too. Until next time, keep a steady hand on the reins and give that pony a good kick.

It’s Quiet in My House

My house is quiet tonight. Now as a mom, if your house is quiet with your kids in it, that could be a bad thing. I know when my daughter is quiet normally it is because she has gotten into who knows what and is doing who knows what with it, but not tonight. Tonight my parents have her and I was really excited about having some quiet to myself until my husband gets home from work, but, as soon as I left her, my world felt empty. I knew there was something missing.

Now my little girl is a handful and trust me when I say I am happy for a break, but that isn’t what made it feel like something is missing. It felt empty because she is my life. As a stay at home mom, you get very little time to and for yourself. You spend all day taking care of the kids and then your husband when he comes home. The word ‘tired’ is tattooed across your forehead and all you dream about is taking a shower that is longer than five minutes which includes the heat up time. I get that tonight and now I want her back. I want her crawling on me and demanding things from me left and right. I feel like my night has no purpose and my house feels hollow. I walk by her room and I want to curl up in her bed just to get her scent. She is my world and I miss her.

I know she is fine and in five minutes I will be jumping for joy down the halls that I get to sleep in without my normal 6:00 am alarm clock, but right now I miss her. She is having so much fun that she doesn’t know what to do with it. My parents will keep her well busy and the other way around and I look forward to hearing the stories from their time together. So tonight I will enjoy the quiet house and the night’s sleep because I go pick her up tomorrow and my crazy life picks up again. I can’t wait.

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You can tell she is a barrel of fun 🙂

Am I a Good Example?

So Emma and I have had an interesting week. She is an awesome kid but some times she definitely gives me a run for my money. I noticed lately the thing that I am saying to her the most is “you need to be thankful for what you have” and today I had the Holy Spirit hit me with a soul crusher. Let me explain.

We have been having to do some outdoor renovations on our new house and it has been a project that is taking longer than expected. Now we have to paint the whole house and will eventually have to reside the house. Only I have so many projects that would cost half as much as the outdoor projects are costing inside the house and I would get to see them everyday. I have also been pushing my husband to start planning for these projects but he is so not in the remolding mood after all these outdoor projects. So here is where the sting from the Holy Spirit came in. After I told my daughter she had to be thankful for something I made for lunch and the Holy Spirit asked me if I was thankful for what I have been given?

Talk about ouch. So am I good example for my daughter? Not recently. I have been looking at things that I want to see changed instead of being thankful for the things that been done to make the house better from the outside. Even though I want the things changed on the inside, I will have to stay patient. They will get done but, for now, it is the outside of the house that will be made better and I have to be thankful for that.

Trying to Figure it All out

Most people tackle things one thing at a time. Not me! I publish a book, open an Etsy Shop, raise a toddler, and be a wife all at the same time. Those are just my immediate duties. I have others at church, with our extended families, and outside activities. (Yes I have hobbies and friends outside of all that.) So when does it end? When will I stop pushing myself? I honestly don’t know.

Now I have been trying to learn how to make my Etsy Shop more successful and market Potholes of Hope properly. Both are two very different dragons to slay. On one hand I have a book that I need to be open and happy about even though I feel like all my posts and tweets fall on a lot of deaf ears. Then I have my Etsy Shop that I have to sell myself and say what a great creator I am when I am only hoping for one sale a month. How to juggle both while still giving my daughter and husband the time they? Honestly, it’s by the grace of God.

When it comes to any type of selling for me is really hard. I am a terrible (let me say it again, terrible) sales person. I have bombed many job interviews because they required me to do a simple sales pitch and I couldn’t. I couldn’t sell fire to Eskimos. I felt like I was being pushy and ride for telling someone they needed this certain tanning product. I would start out my pitch strong and end with a “please”. I think one of my interviewers actually laughed at me.

Now the irony of all this is that my profession is sales! AHH!!! But now I am selling things that I really care about. They are things that I have put a lot of thought and time into to make them what I want them to be. So I get on my phone and keep tweeting and posting because I know my products are good and people need them. They need good books, baby blankets, and rugs. It may seem crazy but it’s my life and I love it. I would be bored to live any other way.

But speaking of selling, I have a new listing! You know that shark blanket I was telling you about in my post I Love Filling Orders!? Well here it is! I think it looks awesome! What’s cool is that it comes in sizes for babies to really tall people. There is no one who can’t enjoy being eaten by a shark. So click on the link below and get your’s ordered today.

Shark Blanket, Eat Me Shark Blanket

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