Monday, September 27, 2010

I have a toddler!

Well, it's official my little baby boy is 1!! No longer will I refer to him as months old. It will be years (and possibly half years) from here on out! I wanted to highlight our special weekend on here so I have it documented in pictures. It was a great day. We are truly blessed with a wonderful church, beautiful family, and an awesome son-Enjoy!

 Finn's birthday cake...yes that's the old school Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
 His 1st year in monthly pictures. Amazing how much he changed!
 Finn is all ready to be dedicated at church in his tie and converse shoes!
 Aww-such a sweet picture of my mom(Mammie), Finn, and Gregory!
 Another picture of his adorable outfit!
 Here I am walking him around like he's a big boy (he will ALWAYS be my baby)
 His second outfit for the party was his TMNT onesie. Here he is with me.
 I loved seeing him love the gifts!
 He's thinking..."Hmm, what is this stuff?"
 Wow, he is destroying that cake!
 I love that little smurk and black lips :)
 He really liked that icing!
 Going in for the bite-thanks Aunt Nay Nay!
 Here's our sweet family. Thank you to everyone who came. We are so blessed!
 And we had to have a silly picture!
 And now the sugar coma sets in. What a perfect day it was!
 This picture is from a few weekends ago but it's so cute. He loved riding in the wagon!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

my thoughts, Your thoughts

I have been doing some side work on the weekends quality testing some of Louie Giglio's DVDs. And wow, I have to say they were such a blessing to me. He has an amazing way of teaching the truth. I love the way he always gets across the same thing-no matter the sermon.

Big God, little us.

What does that mean to you?

To me, it's the simple reminder of this verse:

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,"  declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." Isaiah 55:8-9

I hope you feel encouraged today knowing that God is bigger than any challenge you have. I'm currently praying for open hands with my life. I'm praying that I will hold everything - my roles as a wife/mom/daughter/employee/friend, my job, my money - with open hands.

Teach me Lord....

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Exciting news...

My little baby boy is walking!!!

Here's a video of his first steps for anyone who's interested:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The path

I constantly ask myself this question-Where am I going? I think it's important to help me have a good perspective.  However lately I've been focusing my thoughts on where have I been or really what have I been through.

I've been thinking a lot about where I was a year ago and 2 years ago. I've been thinking about what kind of path I'm walking along. I can tell you from the start that I am on a path that's led by my Heavenly father.

The cool thing is that I've had this blog for a while now and I can actually click back and read where I was days, months, and years ago. That is so cool! So I want to highlight 3 things and tell you what i've learned since then.

#1- September 2008,  Never Let Go
So, where am I today? Well, it still doesn't make any sense to me. However, I have seen a couple tell their story and encourage others to follow Christ. I have seen a beautiful little girl come in to the world and give them so much joy. As we approach Brook's 2 year anniversary, I'm reminded how blessed I am to have a little boy that God has trusted me with. I know how short life is. I never know when my time is up here. I never know when Finn's time is up here. But, I do know God is here and today I can proclaim - He NEVER lets go.

#2 June 2009, Sean Strickland
I miss Sean everyday. Actually, a few days ago I looked for him on ichat and then remembered after I looked that he's with Jesus. I just wanted to ask him a quick question. So instead, I just browse through emails from him or ichats we had. That makes me feel like we talked. I just wish he could meet Finn. He would just love him! I'm still praying for Jana and Gabi everyday. That's all I can do.

#3 September 2009, The Dad's perspective
I read this post often. It reminds me of how blessed I am to have such an amazing husband and best friend. Gregory is the most incredible father. He has read books, spent lots of time in prayer, reading devotionals, etc. Anything he can do to better Finn's life he makes it happen. Wow. I am so blessed. I'm actually speechless. God literally made me from one of his ribs because we are definitely soul mates.

So let me sum it up. The last 2 years have put me through all kinds of things. But as I wrote in the first one, God has NEVER let go. He has always stayed by my side. He's brought me rescue even when I don't get answers. I get comfort. And that's all I can ask for. God is my perfect Heavenly father and for that I am eternally grateful.

"I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD watches over you—the LORD is your shade at your right hand;  the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now & forevermore." Psalm 121

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Emotionally Balanced

Do I have my emotions in check? Most of the time, that's a no. However, I have really been working on keeping myself balanced when it comes to my emotions.

It's kinda funny that I'm writing this post today. Because today I feel a little unstable. It's that special time of the month if you know what I mean :) 

Anyway, it is very hard to keep my emotions in check because I am an emotional woman. Not in an always unstable way. I don't crying or yelling at the drop of the hat. But I definitely have feelings a lot. I keep them to myself most days. 

Again, the only way I have found to stay balanced is to stay connected to the Lord. He is my focus. I also keep reminding myself that people change but Jesus is the same yesterday and today and tomorrow. That truth always sets me free.

Today is the last of the balanced posts. So I'd love to see what you think. If anyone is out there, please post me a comment. Be honest. Did you like the posts? Hate these posts? And give details! 

I'll be back soon...we're only 12 days away from Finn's 1st birthday! 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Physically Balanced

Most people don't think about balance when it comes to healthy living. And if you think about do you really prioritize eating right and exercising?

If I'm really honest, I can tell you that I always put this on the back burner until 3 months ago. 3 months ago, I decided that I needed to get healthy. I signed up to run a 10k and began training. In just 4 short weeks, I feel in love with running. Never thought that would happen! But now that I've been exercising and cooking healthy meals for my family, I notice myself much less stressed. Several things happen...1-You feel good about yourself 2-Your clothes fit more comfortable 3-You can burn off stress through exercise 4-You are just making better food choices

So, how's your lifestyle? What are some small changes that you can make to get healthier?

Last but not least, when it comes to being truly balanced in the terms of health-who do you really depend on? Who will you go to?

Then Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. John 6:35

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Relationally Balanced

Relationships are everywhere-with your family, your friends, your coworkers.

The important question is "how healthy are your relationships". The Webster dictionary describes healthy as "prosperous and flourishing". When you think about relationship with your spouse, your kids, your friends, etc.- do you think "these relationships are prosperous and flourishing"?

More importantly, how is your relationship with God?

Prosperous and flourishing is basically a fancy way of saying growing. I've found I have to be very intentional and purposeful when it comes to the relationships in my life. In order to keep my relationships healthy, they need to be prioritized correctly. For me, they have to stay in this order-God, husband, child, family, friends. When the priority gets out of whack then my relationships are no longer balanced. So to stay healthy and balanced you must put your relationships in order.

What is one action item you can do this week to be balanced in the area of relationships? For me it is to put God first.

"Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:5-10

Friday, September 3, 2010

Spiritually Balanced

Spiritual warfare is real.

That's been really bothering me lately. And I have found that I need to be very intentional to stay strong and not get discouraged. I have to be balanced when it comes to being spiritual so I can fight!

In a lot of ways I feel that be spiritually balanced could easily be the most important way to balanced life. I believe this simply because of spiritual warfare. Also, I have found that if I don't spend time with Him, then I am disconnected from Him all day.

Are you connected with the Lord for a quiet time everyday?

Consistency not quantity is the only thing that matters. God just wants you to start your day with him. I used to think it didn't have to be the morning. I am NOT a morning person. However, my 15 minutes with my God each morning sets my day with God. No one else. Just me and God. My priority is Him and will be all day.

So, how do you get and stay balanced spiritually? You spend consistent time with the Lord everyday. It doesn't matter if it's 2 minutes. What matters is that it's consistently every day. Lets follow the example of Jesus.

"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed." Mark 1:35

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Mentally Balanced

The next few entries are going to be steps to becoming balanced. They will be short and sweet telling what I have learned. I by no means am balanced in these areas. It's a daily struggle, but I have learned what I need to do. And my hope is that this will encourage you as well. 

Your mind is powerful.

It can take you from calm and peaceful to anxious in seconds. As a woman our mind is always working. I think that's why I have trouble sleeping most nights. I never can seem to get my brain turned off. For me, reciting scripture over and over works every time.  Your mind can work on overload all day long as well. I find I have to stay connected to my Father all day long.

If I lose my connection, I lose my mind. 

What about you? Are you connected to God all day? Do you allow Him to renew your mind multiple times during the day?

Having a renewed mind is the first step to being balanced mentally. And like I said before the mind is powerful. Use it wisely.

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:2