my little garden

This morning, the rains are here and I don’t mind a bit. It’s helping the boys sleep in a little and it’s watering my little garden. Or, I should say He is watering my little garden. I keep telling my husband that it’s one of my most favorite places to be in the whole world. Summer is half over and it saddens me to think that my garden is coming close to its peak…well, I’m sad and excited at the same time. From a distance, it looks like a mess!

My messy little garden

My messy little garden

But, if you look more closely, you’ll see the good stuff!

God has blessed my little garden and I’m so thankful.

My baby boy, Elam, will be one on Monday! Isn’t that hard to believe? Looking back on a post from a year ago, time has flown and he’s changed so much.

Little Ezra is 3.5 and is saying the funniest things. Like, shoulders are “shirtles”. Gotta love it.

My Thrive ministry is taking off slowly. Check out my separate website for more details about that.

Enjoy the rest of the summer!

so stinkin’ excited

A lot has happened since my last post! I’ve started my own business/ministry and it’s really just falling into place. I believe that’s because God gave me the vision and he’s working out all of the details. :) Check out my website!

My logo!

My logo!

I’m teaching my first Thrive Cardio & Strength workout tomorrow…I’ve taken contemporary Christian music and choreographed a 30 minute routine. We’re going to start the session with a prayer and end with a short devotional. Then, I’m having my first seminar at my church on June 15.

Life is good on the home front too! I’m enjoying the extra time with my boys (including my husband) and my part-time job doing web development is going well. We develop our sites on WordPress now, so that helps!

What’s going on in your world?

tryin’ somethin’ new

dreamin

I love the way God speaks to His children (that’s you and me). About a month ago, my job took a turn for the worse and I decided it was enough. I put my notice in and April 30 will be my last day as Acting Director at the fitness center where I work. I’m going back to my old job doing website design & development, but just part-time. That will leave time for me to do personal training and teach group exercise classes on my own. I’ve never struck out to try to be my own boss, so it’s a little scary, but exciting too. I’m trying to figure out what to name my company, get liability insurance, etc.

In going through this, Rick Warren’s blog has spoken to me so much! The image above came from “Get Out and Try Something New” – you should go read it. There have been so many others about Christians and work…some of have been inspirational and some have stepped on my toes (like how to love your co-workers – ouch!).

Another thing I’ve done was download the background music to Laura Story’s song “Blessings”, which I plan to sing in church this Sunday. I love that song and I feel it really speaks to people’s hearts. One of my talents is my singing voice and I don’t use it nearly enough.

What’s your struggle today? I hope God grants you the direction you need to face your challenge.

busy as a bee

A busy honeybee on a spring crocus

A busy honeybee on a spring crocus

I’m really too busy to be posting, but I couldn’t not share this with you. I spent the day with my mom yesterday since it was her birthday, on our way into the restaurant for lunch, she pointed out these beautiful little flowers with honeybees buzzing around. I was so stinkin’ excited! This winter has seemed to last forever, even though it’s been relatively mild. I just love spring and summer and I could have just laid down in those flowers all day. It was about 60 degrees and sunny. What a lovely day.

Life is moving along at lightning pace, but I’ve gotten a better grip on a work/home life balance. I’m looking forward to the month of April when (fingers crossed) things should slow down a bit.

Baby Elam (now 7 months old) cut his first tooth on my birthday a couple weeks ago. It made me crazy. Little Ezra (3 years old) is potty trained and says the wildest things. I’m so blessed. My husband is a sweety, too. ;)

Enjoy the weekend, wherever you are and whatever you do!

time for a change

My little flu baby last week

My little flu baby last week

[I wrote this yesterday morning at 1:30 am and I am already doing better!]

It’s 1:30 am and I’m up writing this down. I don’t feel like I will be able to go back to sleep until it’s out of my system.

Yesterday evening, I had a good cry in the Food Lion parking lot. Who, me? Miss Optimistic? Yea, buddy. I felt the anxiety building as I stood in line to pay for my groceries. I’ve felt this way several times over the past few months and it always seems to happen in the grocery store. Anyway, I had loaded my purchases into my car with tears brimming in my eyes. When I shut the car door, the tears came out and I took a minute to just cry. I’ve learned over the years that crying is good sometimes.

Then I picked up my phone and read Rick Warren’s daily devotional. It was about being happy with what you have, right now. It started to sink in that I need to be happy right now – it’s my choice. Did I already know this? Yes, but I needed a reminder.

What events led up to my parking lot meltdown? Well, it was Monday and I had been off work for 4 days, so it was catch up day. I took Thursday and Friday off to take care of our 6 month old son who came down with the flu. Thankfully, he did very well, but it was still a long 4 days of holding a fussy baby, then being up and down several times each night. Then, I came down with a cold Friday (maybe a mild case of the flu?) so that made me feel cruddy. Also, I didn’t take time to exercise today because I was “too busy.” I just wanted to get home and see my boys as quickly as possible. And, I did.

When it was all said and done and I had time to think about everything, I realized:

1. I’ve been blaming my job for my stress here lately.
B. I am the one who needs to be in control of my thoughts, actions, and emotions.
3. I have been way too passive and indecisive recently.
D. It’s time for a change!

Here’s my action plan for change:

A. Use my time more efficiently – at home and work.
2. Make time to exercise – no one is telling me NOT to. It’s such a big part of my lifestyle and my mood requires those endorphins.
C. Make time to meal plan. I’ve been struggling with bad food choices simply because I don’t spend enough time planning meals.
4. Be positive! I always preach this, but I must practice it.
E. Don’t expect perfection. I set such high expectations for myself and others – I don’t think anyone could live up to them. I have to scale it down a notch.

2 Corinthians 10:5 states “….and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” God has promised me (and you) great things…love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22). He doesn’t want me moping around being sad. He made me into a strong, confident woman so I could fulfill my purpose as a happy wife, mom, and role model.

My job won’t always be so stressful. Probably about the time I get accustomed to the stress of work, then there will be a new form of stress in my life. I have to learn to adapt, modify, and overcome. I’m surprised I let it get me down this far. But, I’m happy my eyes were opened and now I know what I need to do! No more excuses.

[End note – I think post natal hormone changes and Seasonal Adjustment Disorder from lack of sunshine have played a part in my blue streak, too!]

My now THREE year old son wearing my clothes

My now THREE year old son wearing my clothes

God loves me (and He loves you, too!)

It occurred to me (again) yesterday how much God must love us. We are His children. I love my children more than I could ever describe to any human. And God loves us more than we love our own children. So, why wouldn’t He bless us and give us the desires of our hearts? At the same time, He wants us to grow and learn lessons sometimes, too.

Up until a few days ago, I had been battling with a big decision in my life and I had no peace or joy. Well, I wouldn’t say “no”, but it was a lot less than it had been in the previous months and years. After praying about it and weighing all the options, I decided I had to make a change and now I have peace and joy again! Through the process, I feel like I’ve grown closer to God and now I have the desire to become even closer to him.

I get Rick Warren’s Purpose Drive Life daily devotional via email. The one I read this morning almost made me cry, even though it was several days old. The part that got me was, “How do you know when you’re letting God live through your life? When you embody the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” It got me for a couple of different reasons…I have the peace and joy again. AND, just a week or so ago, I blogged about my goals for this year and one of them was to study the Fruit of the Spirit.

God loves us. We’re his kids. He’ll talk to us if we listen.

Matthew 7:9-11 King James Version (KJV)

Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?

10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?

11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

My sweet baby boy is 6 months old today!

My sweet baby boy is 6 months old today!

pay it forward

I had the nicest thing happen to me a while ago. I went through the drive thru for lunch (bad me, I know) and the lady in front of me paid for my food! She didn’t even know me. I’ve heard about that happening, but it’s never happened to me before. It brought me tears. What a way to show God’s love! There was no one behind me in the line, but I plan to continue what she started with me.

pay-it-forward