In Honor of Returning to School Tomorrow...

Well, I wasn't sure this day would ever come. When I walked out of Wendell Middle School two years ago, I wasn't sure if I'd ever step into a classroom to teach again. There are many reasons why I had that thought, but we won't go there.

God has taught me a lot over the past 2 years and I'm stepping back into the classroom tomorrow a completely different person. For that...I am grateful. I am grateful that I got to work at Journey Church with the most incredible staff and encouraging team. I got to be on the front lines of seeing people come to know Jesus on a day in and day out basis. I still remember the conversations I had with Lisa Bauer about the possibility of coming on staff. Tears come to my eyes as I sit here and try to write. I was really bitter when I left Wendell two years ago. I was tired. I was frustrated. I'm not sure I was a very nice person. But...I trusted Jesus. I trusted that the experiences I had there were for a reason, I trusted that he had next steps for my life in being what I thought was to be a stay at home mommy. And he did...I don't think I can put into words the gratitude I have for what the Lord has done in my life over the past 2 years. He is so good, just so good. I've learned a lot about myself...some good & some bad. I've learned what my strengths are and what my downfalls are, which cause me to trust Jesus even more so that people can see through the ugliness of my sin and selfishness and see Jesus.

I could keep writing, but I would probably just ramble. I actually wanted to write this post because I came across another blog post on Facebook (which by the way, I never read blogs people post on Facebook) that really caught my eye... This is it. This is why I teach.

When I sat down with Jimmy (our pastor) a few months ago to tell him I was stepping down from my position on staff at Journey to pursue teaching again, he said to me, "I thought you hated teaching?" I did...but I didn't hate who I taught and that was the root of my desire to return to the classroom. I love students. I love giving myself away to them and I love allowing the Lord to use me in their lives.

Never in a million years did I think I would be stepping foot into a classroom with 60 young 6th grade middle school girls staring at me. Just waiting for me to speak, waiting to see how I will act, waiting to see how I will treat them. Yes, I said it, GIRLS. I am teaching at an all girls public school. I never thought they would want me there...not with the little experience I have, but God is bigger than my 3 years of experience. What I hope that they see tomorrow and for the next 179 days of school is Jesus and only Jesus. That's what it's all about. Of course the skills I will need to teach them are important and I will do the very best I can to teach them what they need to know, but I pray for changed lives. I pray that somehow, even though legally I can't speak the name of Jesus to them, they see His love in me and that seeds are planted. And for the parents, siblings, colleagues...I pray the same. That they would see Jesus and only Jesus...


About Matt

Most wives think their husband is great, or at least they should think he's great...but my husband is REALLY GREAT! You see, I've been in bed sick with a sinus infection for the past 24 hours. I've only been up and about once and that was to take Laney to the doctor. Matt has taken care of both kids, meals, snacks, playtime, medicine for Laney and medicine for me. He has kept the house clean and even took the kids out to run errands this morning so I could sleep since I didn't last night.

Not only does he do this stuff when I'm sick, but we share chores & responsibilities all the time. He helps me keep the house clean, he plays with the kids, he helps me with the kids bath & bedtime on top of all of his other responsibilities in life. I seriously could not ask for a better husband!

Not to mention he's funny, smart, we have a lot of fun together & pretty hot (ok, you can go throw up now, but I can say that because after all...he is my husband!)


A Sick Day

I woke up feeling just awful yesterday, but I was determined to go to work anyway. We have so much going on at Journey and I'm going out of town for my sister's wedding next week, so I was just determined to get through the day. About 11:00 I got a call from Laney's babysitter that she had a fever of 102. Poor girl, this made the 3rd time in a week and a half that she had been sick...1st it was a stomach bug, then it was pink eye and now this...so I immediately got in the car & headed to pick her and Ben up. I called the doctor and made an appointment because really, 3 times in a week and a half...we had to get my girl better. We found it out was an ear infection, so we got her meds and put her to bed. Matt came home from work about 6 and then he made me go to bed...

Isn't this the sweetest? 

I slept awful last night and have decided I will NEVER take benedryl again...it has the opposite effect on me. I thought it would knock me out last night, but instead I found myself watching the news at 3 am.

I've been sleeping most of today & I'm finally starting to feel a little better. Laney is still a little whinny, but she has been playing hard since she got up this morning, so that's a good sign. We're praying that Matt & Ben stay healthy. There's so much sickness going around, we have friends with strep throat and the doc said the flu is going around again...seriously!!! It's April!

Despite the sickness, I got some quality time with my girl today.

I guess we just needed to slow down, it's been a rough month for our family. Looking forward to getting better and enjoying wedding festivities next week!


Debrief & Time With Jesus

I sat down to spend some time with Jesus this morning and just could not clear my head. So much going on around us...it's spring, so I want to be outside but the pollen is so bad my allergies can't handle it. We are attempting to potty train because Laney has decided she doesn't want to keep her diaper on, my house is actually clean so I want to go do something fun, I have a laundry list of things I want to do around the house (paint the table on the deck, find a rug for the living room, paint the guest bathroom, plant flowers) but all of that requires money and we're paying off debt right now, so I have to wait...We haven't had a date night in over a month, so I need some intentional time with Matt, we're going out with family for my birthday tonight so I'm thinking about that...

Also, we're coming out of a LONG month and a half of busy busy...wedding showers for my sister, bridal portrait for my sister, Easter, Connect Party prep, group life organization for our spring trimester at church, our new life group, Laney being sick, Ben starting baby food... only to go back into another busy 2 weeks...Refuel worship event this coming week, my birthday, Matt's going out of town for BDT training next weekend, my sister is getting married in 2 weeks...




Yet, I'm trying to quiet my head & my heart to spend a time with the Lord this morning. I feel like we're debriefing this weekend only to be busy another 2 weeks. Not that this is the only time that I've spend time with the Lord, it's just that I have so much going on in my head that spending time with the Lord is difficult this morning. I'm thinking about the past few weeks and prepping my head for another 2. So, I decided to write before I dig into my quiet time. I'm sure none of this is making sense, but I needed it before I could focus.

I have a good friend who wrote about her time with the Lord recently, she's actually the one that gave me the idea to get my head & heart quiet by writing or making a "to do" list before I spend time with the Lord. Whatever it takes to focus on my time with God is what I do before I dig into scripture every day...

What do you do to get your mind & heart right before you spend intentional time with Jesus every day?


Little Ballerina

I can't post any pictures of my sister's bridal portrait shoot this past weekend, I don't want to tempt her fiance' Jeremy too much...I will say that she was absolutely stunning though :)

I can show you a sneak peak of the flower girl all dolled up for a picture with her Aunt Anna and she was ABSOLUTELY adorable!

My mom, sister & I had a blast with the photographer, Kate Ashbrook, who also did my wedding. She is fabulous! I can't wait to see the pictures, 4 weeks until the wedding!


This Weekend

This weekend we are heading home for the day on Saturday. In 4 weeks my little sister is getting married, so I have a few errands I need to run at home...get my bridesmaids dress fitted, get Laney's flower girl dress fitted, get Matt's measurements to the shop for his tux and most importantly Anna is having her bridal portraits made, which is the real reason we're heading home. I can't believe my sister is getting married, so weird for me. Just yesterday we were pulling hair & fighting over barbies. Guess it's probably weird to her that I'm married with two kids...anywho, here's 2 fun pictures for memory sake...I'll find some older ones of us to post closer to her wedding...

Anna & I her junior year of high school, 2006. (16 & 20 years old):

Anna & me at my dress fitting 5 years ago...(19 & 23 years old):


What are you doing this weekend?


Writing Again?

Over the years my blog has been a "hodge podge" of writing for me...it started out as an online journal and when we got married and bought a house, it became a place for me to document the fun things I did to decorate our house and our adventures as newlyweds. Believe it or not, I love DIY projects and I love to travel...however, when we started having kids things quickly changed. I just don't have time...not with 2 small kids under the age of 2 and a full time job. So, I quit blogging for quite some time after I had Laney. I just had no time, even though I wish I had documented Laney's 1st year a little better. When I was on maternity leave with Ben, I started writing again but as soon as I went back to work, I didn't have time anymore. I miss it. I miss documenting our life...whether it's something fun we did on a weekend, something the Lord is teaching me, or some project I'm working on in our house. I don't even know who reads my blog and I never really did it so a bunch of people would read it anyway...I just did it for me because even though I'm not the best at it, I do like to write. When I moved away from home, it also became a way for my family to keep up with me.

Anywho, I have recently gotten the desire to write again. I don't know what I'll write about or even if I'll be good with keeping up with my blog...but I'd like to give it a shot. We'll see...


Fighting a Battle

It's been one of those weeks, you know...where you wish you could just twinkle your nose and get through it...I knew it was going to be a busy week and I thought I was prepped but goodness! We have connect party this coming Sunday, which is a pretty big event at our church. I have a huge responsibility in doing a lot of prep work to make the night happen. In order to make this week go smoothly, I did some extra prep work last Friday (which is normally my day off) and even though I have a lot to do this week, I chose to take Monday off to get my house back in order after a crazy week last week so that my husband could fly solo with the kids when needed. I had a plan and I thought I was ready to knock this crazy week out...

As soon as I got to Journey yesterday it all started...I had to make a change to the book I needed to print 1,000 copies of in just 3 days. That threw the copier off, which turned into 2 hours of wasted print time. My wonderful hubby finally got me up and going about 1:00, only to realize at 4:30 yesterday afternoon that I had been printing with several errors (that in my panic to get my copies going totally missed.) Lets just say that by the time I got home last night I was DONE for the day.

When my feet hit the ground this morning, I began praying over my day...over my family, over the copy machine at Journey and over the many tasks that needed to be accomplished. Matt took the kids to school this morning and I got to Journey at 9:00, double checked my book and set the machine to print. I was on a roll until I got a text from our sitter that Laney had a 102 fever, REALLY? My poor baby being sick is never a good thing, but THIS week? Attack. That's what I felt...Satan was trying to get me all upset and freaked out. Trying to feed me lies that I wouldn't get everything done for this party, that I always make huge mistakes and there's probably someone better that can do my job, someone who is more efficient and that most of all I was a bad mom because my husband had to go get Laney. I immediately wanted to freak out and then was quickly reminded that none of this was true...God had this. Scripture says NOTHING is too hard for the Lord (Jeremiah 32:17) and that with Him all things are possible (Matthew 19:26)... that means my tasks for this week, my child being sick and my time being limited.

In Ephesians 6, scripture talks about putting on the full armor of God so that we can withstand the enemy. It's so important that we do this daily. Tomorrow is a new day and I might face challenges and more set backs, but you know what? I'm okay with that. The battle has already been won, the enemy has been defeated. I know that no matter what I face this week, our connect party will happen Sunday night. I know that God already has a plan for the people that will attend and He will get the glory. I don't know what you're dealing with this week, but if you are a child of God He has already won your battles. Are you giving Him your struggle this week or are you listening to lies and stumbling over obstacles from the enemy?