Monday, March 31, 2014

Baby Girl Bed Head - Installment 2

This is actually a throwback to an Instagram post from Feb. 22 that I COMPLETELY forgot about.


Thankfully, she lets me spray her down with detangled and she enjoys getting her hair brushed... for now!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

We Have a Situation...

...aka Baby Girl Bed head

Oh my.

It's been out of control lately.

So, I'm going to be documenting the amazingness here on the blog.

(This project has been inspired by my sweet friend Kodi and her bed head adventures.)

So far, I have 4 days to share with you.

As long as I don't cut those curls, I'm sure there will be many more to follow!


From March 4th:

It got even better on March 5th:

March 11:

And, from this morning:

I think March 5th is my favorite.
More to come!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Life at 9,300 feet...

It was sunny and warm yesterday.

We spent the better part of the day outside.

I even got a little sunburnt on my cheekbones.

Today, we woke up to snow.

Surprise, surprise.

Hope you're enjoying your Wednesday!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Processing... (and a FREE printable)

Fear used to come out in subtle ways...

Insecurity that would hold me back from trying new things or giving my all on the court = fear of failure.

Sticking to friends who already knew me because I was sure that new people wouldn't like me or find me cool enough = fear of rejection.

Not volunteering to help in situations where I may have been able to contribute something valuable = fear of disappointing others.

But, I've taken baby steps.
Running the marathon was a BIG deal for me because I had to put many fears aside in order to do it. I had feared that I wouldn't finish, that I'd look ridiculous, that I'd get injured and in doing so, disappoint all who came to cheer me on. But, mainly I feared proving all of my self-doubt right, that I would inevitably fail.

I didn't.

I certainly didn't have an outstanding finish time, but all things considered, I rocked that marathon.

In my life, I usually go one of two ways: either I let insecurities stop me from doing little things or I attack big things head on.

Things that were a big deal to me were things that I could somehow run at full steam.
On the other hand, if something could be considered small or not a big deal, I could justify brushing it off and not trying because it didn't really matter.

The problem with that was that I was getting myself into the habit of letting fear and insecurity win because I was getting used to giving up on lots of little things every day.

I know this sounds weird, but here's an example. I enjoyed singing on the worship team at our church of over a thousand people where I would be singing into a microphone or have solos, duets, whatever but the idea of being in the choir freaked me out. I don't know why... don't ask.

But, it feels like my fears are a lot more obvious now.

After everything with the Little Miss, I fear being pregnant again.

Since the accident, I've begun having panic attacks.
I've never had them before. They are paralyzing. 

Here's the thing, I got injured 2 weeks before my marathon and still ran it. I was told I was miscarrying my daughter and now she is an awesome 2 year old (yes, she has seizures, but so far they aren't hurting her). While driving our truck, I slid off a mountain cliff and rolled the truck down the side of the mountain and walked away. God has blessed me. That is not in question. He has VERY OBVIOUSLY ordained these situations and kept us safe through them.

My problem is that I can't figure it out.

Why didn't that injury stop me from running?
Why do so many women miscarry and my body went through everything that it should have during a miscarriage, but I have my daughter?
Why, when all of the emergency responders tell me that normally they are extracting a body from an accident like that, did I get to walk away scratch free?

I know it seems twisted to think that way, but I can't seem to wrap my mind around these things.

Isn't that the point?
To admit that we're human, that we haven't yet arrived, that we don't understand it all?

God knows I'm a work in progress.
He knows that sometimes I am weak.
Sometimes I give into temptation.
Sometimes I doubt, and fear, and fail.

And that's ok.
It's in these moments that He gets the opportunity to show up and remind me that He is sufficient, that He is all I need.

It's not easy to trust Him.
In fact, it's terrifying.

But that doesn't mean it's not worth it.

In The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (the book, not the movie), Lucy and Mr. Beaver are talking about Aslan (who is of course a metaphor for God):

"Is he - quite safe?" - Susan
"Safe?... 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you." - Mr. Beaver

I need to wrap my brain around this. I'm not naive. I know life is going to be full of struggles and hardships, joy and pain, fun and challenges, happiness and grief.

So, I think it comes down to how I want to approach each of these situations.

God is going to let happen to us whatever He chooses. He will allow things that will contribute to His purposes and glory.

I need to decide if He and I are on the same team.

Will I embrace each difficult circumstance with a willingness to rejoice no matter what or will I stiffen up and put up my defenses because I don't want to go through it?

I need to rely on Him to even help me trust Him, to keep me focused on Him. When left to myself, I doubt and question and get distracted.

I want to focus on Him because at the end of my life I would rather say that even though I did not always understand the details of the storyline, God is still the best author.

To download this free printable, go HERE.

I sincerely hope that by walking with me on this journey, you find hope.
Hope in the fact that you don't have to have all of this mastered yet.

It's ok to still be a work in progress.
I am.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

The end...

It's the end of an era.

The Bible tells us that there is a time to mourn...

...this is that time.

I'm turning 30.

BUT, instead of focusing on the fact that my 20's are over and how sad that makes me, I think I need to reflect on all the awesome that took place during these 10 years.

*DISCLAIMER* This is a very personal post. I wrote it more for me... so I won't be offended if you stop reading now.  :)

Year 20
I began my 20's living with the BEST roommates. Women I really admire.

I was dating the man who I would eventually marry.

I was studying a subject that really interested me at a school where I loved the ministry I was apart of.

I was raising support to move to Lake Tahoe for the summer.

I spent that summer with some of the most amazing people I've ever known and that was where God stirred my heart to head overseas.

Year 21
I was able to travel. A lot. All over the States. From the west coast for MPD training, to the South to visit friends, to the Southeast for Spring Break and to visit my sweet Great Aunt.  (Not to mention JesusLand - for real! There were camels and everything!)

And, then I kept traveling. I got on a plane in August and headed to CO for a week followed by moving to the other side of the world. Literally.

Oh the adventures we had! Learning a new language and culture. Exploring. New foods. New friends.  New memories. Priceless. I know I'll never again experience anything like that. I'm so grateful for that time. If nothing else, I feel like I walked away from that year with such a bigger understanding of God and His love for ALL people. Invaluable.

During my time overseas, year 22 started...

Year 22
More traveling, more exploring, more new friends.

Don't mind me looking like a mess... it was humid!

Returning to the States was hard. It was so difficult to bring the person I had become and the experiences I had back to people who hadn't seen me evolve in those ways, and therefore expected me to be the same girl who left. I just wasn't.

Some friendships were strained, others were blossoming.

I got a job I ended up LOVING as a barista at Starbucks. Seriously, best.job.ever.

Year 23
I officially moved to Green Bay.

John proposed.  :)

I graduated from college.

We were planning the wedding while he was living his new-found dream of working with livestock in the mountains.

And, then he returned and we got married!

Year 24
One of the best.

Even though being married brought challenges and we lived in our fair share of crummy apartments, we had an awesome first year.

I was actually using my degree in the Psych world. It was a hard job, but I took comfort in the fact that this was what I trained for.

Some girlfriends and I started our Core 4 - which ended up being one of the BEST things that I've ever being apart of. Ever. I'm so grateful.

New friendships were forming and growing.

I joined the worship team at church.

God was definitely starting to build a foundation of authentic friendships and great leadership in my life. I had no idea.

We moved.

And, apparently I didn't take too many photos...

Year 25
Very shortly after my 25th birthday, we found out we were expecting our first baby.

My Core 4 changed a bit.

I started in a Titus 2 Homemaking Group. Loved every minute.

We moved... again.

We had the Little Mister show up early (but not too early).  :)

I started playing around with a nice camera.

Year 26
I quit my job to stay home with the Little Mister and do in-home childcare.

My Core 4 and I got closer and closer. (That'll happen when you all have your 1st babies within 6 months of each other)

We moved again.

Year 27
Oh, you know, I just ran a marathon. No big deal.

And, then we got pregnant with the Little Miss.

Her pregnancy was pretty rough and we had to say goodbye to my sweet grandmother and my great-aunt.

We made even more memories with our sweet friends.

John got hired on by a camp in Colorado to be their Equestrian Program Manager and we started raising support.

And had the Little Miss.

Year 28
Ev went back into the hospital shortly after my birthday which post-poned our next move temporarily.

Then, we moved... again.

This time it was into my in-law's house so we could save up some money while we raised the rest of our support.

We spent the spring there and then... guessed it. We moved.

Out to CO this time to work as missionaries at a Christian Camp.

We had a blast getting to know our sweet new hometown and the ways of the camp.

We came back to WI for my Gparent's 60th Anniversary celebration and we had Evie dedicated by my Uncle David.

And, guess what? WE MOVED AGAIN.
(but this time it was TOTALLY worth it)  :)

One tough thing from this year: Evie was diagnosed with seizures.

Year 29
I spent a lot of time with the kids at the park and the library, getting to know tourists and locals.

We thoroughly enjoyed the busyness of camp and town.

Friday horse shows were my favorite.

And, we got to play - we snowshoed, hiked 14'ers, camped out, went to the hot springs, explored on horseback, I learned a little more about training horses and was able to contribute to camp by playing photographer.

My family came out to bring my nieces and my cousin's daughter to Horse Camp. They were here for the 4th of July, which is THE BEST here.

We were able to travel back to WI for my grandmother's funeral, the annual family trip with John's family, Christmas and John's grandpa's funeral.

I did have a little accident with the truck, but God provided through it.

Some sweet friends came to visit.

SURPRISE! We moved again! This time onto camp property.

We also added a little lady to our family.

So, I guess, all things considered, saying goodbye to my 20's isn't the worst thing.
I've come a long way... and I've had awesome friends and family on this journey with me.
I'm so grateful.

And, I'm excited to see what my 30's will bring!
I guess we'll see!