Welcome to my little spot of the internet!

Hi! I'm Lacey!

I am a full-time working mom from North Alabama. I love my family, my friends, and my God!

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Monday, June 29, 2015

Testimony Tuesday - Lacey

I am so excited to be starting this series on my blog!  I know God has great things in store through these testimonies that I will be sharing here over the next several weeks!

One thing that I have always struggled with is sharing my testimony.  I have always loved hearing other peoples' testimonies because I believe they are always so powerful.  Hearing how God has worked in peoples' lives just seems to always speak to me in a special way.

But for some reason, I have always had a hard time sharing my own.  I don't really know why.  I guess I have always been afraid that it is not "special" or interesting and honestly, I am just scared to really open up and put it all to the world.  Recently, I have really felt God speaking to me and pulling at me to share my faith more... especially with some friends.  I feel like that seems to be the hardest people to share with.  I guess I have always been afraid that they will judge me more harshly or know my faults more and call me out on things.  I don't know.  It's just tougher for some reason.  But I feel such a tug at my heart that God wants to me share... 

So here goes...

I was raised in church by a Christian family with wonderful parents who loved me, were always there for me, and took care of me.  They taught me right from wrong and encouraged and supported me and my sister.  We always had a nice house and food on the table and were involved in extracurricular activities.  We went to church several times a week and always said the blessing with our meals.  It was just normal to me.  Church is just what you did.  It never crossed my mind when I was young, that everyone didn't have the same things as me.  I didn't know that people had abusive or absent parents or that they didn't have safe homes and clean clothes.  And I really didn't know that everyone didn't wake up and go to church on Sunday.  I was real young, about 5 or 6, when my friend Melesa told me she was getting baptized so of course, I thought well I want to get baptized to.  So I told my mom and we talked to the preacher and one Sunday, Melesa and I both got baptized.  I understood that I wanted Jesus to live in my heart and that I wanted to go to Heaven but there was sooo much more that I didn't understand.  I remember there was an adult that got baptized at the same time and I thought that was so odd because I thought that was something you were supposed to do when you were a kid in Sunday School.  I really didn't understand it all at the time.     

As I got older, I still went to church every Sunday.  I went through church choir and GA's and VBS every year.  It wasn't until I was a young teenager that I really understood what it meant to be a sinner and to be saved.  When I joined the youth group in the 7th grade, I was blessed with a really great youth minister, Ric Camp, and some really special Sunday School teachers.  Between the Bible studies, praise and worship services, and youth retreats, I really felt the Lord speak to me and that is when I truly accepted Christ as my Savior and committed my life to the Lord.  Looking back, I am so extremely thankful for those years in the youth group and the great leaders I had to influence my young life. 

The years went on and I traveled through the glory days of high school and college.  God was still in my life but not necessarily a priority.  I made good grades, was a pretty good athlete, and pretty much followed all the rules.  I had friends and a boyfriend and all was well.  I was still active in church but was also very easily influenced by everyone else and faced the many peer pressures that come with being a teenager.  I played softball in college at a local JUCO.  During this time, I made some very good friends who are still some of my closest friends today.  We spent thousands of hours together hanging out and really influenced each others lives the most during this time of our lives.  We were together all day every day for those few years.  I still went to church every Sunday morning even though it was usually just Jarrod and I and maybe a friend or two in our class.  I think we went more because that is what we were supposed to do than because I really wanted to but looking back, I am very glad I still made it a priority to go.  I even featured a few good Christian music songs on my MySpace!  

I got a job as a co-op my senior year of college and began working full time while finishing up my degree,  I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Mathematics in May and got married a month later.  We both left our parents' homes for the first time ever and began a life of our own in our own house with our "real" jobs!  We still attended church regularly as a couple.  We went to church together at FBC Tanner where Jarrod had grown up and his family still attended.  Jarrod and I are both so extremely blessed with parents who made it a priority to take us to church regularly and teach us about doing what is right.  I cannot stress enough what an impact this had had on my adult life.

Five short months after we were married, we found out about a special little surprise on the way... We would soon be parents to a beautiful blue-eyed blonde-haired baby girl!  We had to grow up and figure out not only how to be husband and wife, but also parents pretty quickly.  A few years later, we were blessed with our other little blue-eyed blondie.  And THIS is really when I learned what it meant to put my faith in God!  It was during these days when I was up late feeding the baby, writing a paper for my Master's degree, paying a big pile of bills, completely covered with a mixture of regurgitated carrots, green beans, and formula, mad about an argument with Jarrod over the right way to put the dishes in the dishwasher or how to fold the towels, all while also trying to comfort my screaming toddler who was throwing a tantrum over her broken plastic princess shoes that I found myself desperate and in need of some help.  I could not do it all on my own.  I was struggling with anxiety, stress, jealousy, and just plain worn out from trying to do it all my way.  This is when I learned to really turn my eyes upon Jesus.

I soon learned that being a Christian wasn't just about believing in Jesus and following the rules as I seemed to do in the past.  It was about having a real relationship with my Savior and putting my faith and trust in Him.  It was about taking up my cross daily and following Him.  Seeking his will and guidance and relying on Him for comfort and rest.  I hadn't always put God first in my life, but after I had my girls, I realized the importance of putting Him first in my life and my family.  I could not juggle being a wife and mother doing it all my way.  I began spending more time reading my Bible and praying.  God became a priority for me.  I discovered hope and encouragement in Him and His word.          

In the past few years, I have tried to make it a priority to put God first in my life.  I am still not perfect at all -- I am far far far from it but I have discovered the importance of putting Him first.  I am still influenced by the world.  I still get stressed and jealous and whiny and needy but I have learned to turn my eyes upon Jesus more.  I am a sinner but I am a daughter of my heavenly Father who wants to take care of me and love me.  This is just my temporary home with temporary things but my God is eternal.  He is a wonderful glorious saving God, the Prince of Peace in my life.

I don't write this testimony to brag about what a happy go lucky life I have had and what a good girl I was and how sheltered and blessed I was to grow up in a healthy church-going family.  In fact, it is extremely scary and nerve wracking for me to open up and share my testimony for some reason.  I have had my fair share of struggles and hardships just like everyone else but I write this to say that I am so extremely thankful that I have found my hope in Christ alone.  I write this to say that Christianity isn't just about obeying rules and believing in heaven and hell.  It's more than going through the motions and doing what I am supposed to do.  It is oh so much more than that!  

I honestly don't know if anyone but my mom and a handful of people read this but I have just really felt the Lord tugging on my heart lately to share my testimony with others even if I only touch one person's life with my story.



   

Sunday, June 28, 2015

What I Read -- Redeeming Love

I've been slacking on my last few book reviews. I honestly wasn't real impressed so just didn't think they were worth the review. I had really been getting bored with my summer read until this last read. I had seen a ton of recommendations for Redeeming Love by Francene Rivers so I picked it up at Barnes and Noble a couple of weeks ago and it was not at all what I expected! But it was a GREAT read!

I love Christian Fiction books. In fact, I would probably say that is my favorite genre. Redeeming Love is about a strong  Christian man who rescues and falls in love with a girl who grew up in prostituiton. The story leads you through their marriage as they struggle with their rocky pasts all while seeing Gods work in their life as a couple.  

The book is filled what some wonderful characters but just warning you that at times, their actions will completely frustrate you! Overall, if was a wonderful read with a powerful message and I would definitely recommend it to everyone... Especially someone who may struggling in their faith. It always amazes me what a strong impact a fictional story can have on my life!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Happy 6th Anniversary

I meant to have some long and sappy post ready filled with pictures and memories and music but..... Well life happened and I haven't had a chance to do that so...

But that's how our life is... Full of busy days and unexpected surprises. Full of little shoes and car seats. Full of baseball and lawn mowing. Full of dirty dishes and overflowing laundry. 

But our lives are even more full of trust and understanding, patience and kindness and encouragement. Full of strength and caring and overflowing with love! We get each other and strive for the very best for each other and I couldn't imagine going through the last six years with anyone else!

Happy six years to my high school sweetheart who is still number one in my heart!!


And a special Happy 50th Anniversary to my sweet aunt and uncle Peggy and Glenn! We also get to share this day with other aunt and uncle Andy and Karen! You are both such a wonderful example of what marriage should be and I am so thankful to share this day with you all! 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Morning Runs and Advocare

I am so excited about all the feed back I received about the Testimony Tuesday series I am starting next week!  I really can't wait to share it with you all!  I will start with mine on Tuesday so be sure to check back!

These last few weeks have been so super hot!  I always forget just how hot these Alabama summers can be... and it's only June!  But I would take it over being freezing cold any day!  That being said... it is also very hard to get my runs in because I refuse to run in the middle of the day when it is 100 degrees and then have to get all fixed back up to sit at my desk all day.  So for the past few weeks, I have been making myself wake up a little earlier to get my runs in before I start my day and I must admit that I LOVE THIS!  

The early morning hours have always been a favorite of mine.  It is the only time that everything is quite and still and just seems like the whole world has stopped moving for a little bit.  I have fallen in love with these morning runs because of this.  The sun is rising and there is no one out and about before 5:00 in the morning and the temperature is just right!  Not to mention I love that my workout is already completed and I don't have to worry about trying to find some time to squeeze it in later.  Plus I don't have to miss out on time with my family or friends.  It's just a win-win all around!

I just finished my Advocare 24 day challenge and saw some great results!  I really feel refreshed and ready for my beach trip! I completely forgot to take measurements before I started but I did lose about 4 pounds which doesn't sound like a lot but is really huge for me considering I have been at a horrible plateau for the last few months and the last few weeks have been extremely busy for us so I didn't get to exercise or cook as much as I normally do.

I have also really been trying out more Advocare products lately and I could not be more pleased!  I already loved the spark, meal replacement shakes, and diet supplements but I also recently tried the Advobar Raw Nutrition snack bar and love it!  It's the perfect little morning snack with my cup of coffee!  And it is all clean and real ingredients.  Another new product I am trying out is the CU24 workout series.  I love it so far!  It is only 24 minutes long and I can do it in my living room with no equipment.  Plus, I really feel "worked" when I get finished! 

You can check out all the great products here!  I honestly have been so satisfied with everyone that I have tried!  https://www.advocare.com/150647737/Store/

I hope to start a new 24 day challenge group sometime in the next few weeks so let me know if you would like to join me and I can get you some more 

On another note..... my parents have been keeping the girls this week!  They love their Babu and Gigi so much and are loving getting a little extra time at home.  My mom sent me this picture of their "fashion show" one day. 

 I can't wait until they are all older and all dressed up going to prom posed together like this so I can compare!  Love these little girls so much!
 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Testimony Tuesday

I have really been studying lately on sharing my faith.  It seems like it is so easy to say that we are a Christian and a follower of Christ but what are we really doing to make a difference in His Kingdom?  I am actually a little embarrassed at how much I have struggled with sharing my faith and have felt God tugging on my heart to do more.  After much thought and prayer, it finally dawned on me!  I can use my blog to reach people through testimony.  It doesn't take a famous person or a good speaker or a good book author to be able to share their story.  All it takes is a little faith from someone who has been changed and redeemed by God's wonderful love for us.

Starting next week, I will be starting a new series I am calling "Testimony Tuesday" where I will be linking up with some of my friends and family to share their testimonies as well as mine.  These strong, beautiful, God-fearing Christian women have touched my life with their faithfulness and desire to serve the Lord and I am so excited to share that on my blog!

I have always been so inspired by people's testimonies and I believe this is one small way that I can reach others and spread God's love.  I believe that a person's testimony can be the most impactful thing they can share with someone.  I know personally, I have been so inspired by others and I hope to do that with someone else.  I am not even sure if anyone really reads my blog but if by sharing testimonies can reach just one person, I believe it is a true success!

  

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful fathers in my life!  Both my dad and my husband have been blessed with being girl dads and they have both taken on that role wonderfully!  I have always believed that it takes a very special man to raise little girls.

Jarrod has mastered his job of full time musician for our impromptu dance parties.  He has learned to dress Barbies and has almost even mastered the ponytail!

He has learned all the princesses and knows how to button dresses and buckle sandals.  He knows how to ruffle tutus and fix little pink toys.

Hadley wanted to serve Daddy breakfast in bed so we made him some waffles and chocolate milk and delivered them to him this morning when he woke up. Not sure he was as thrilled about it as the girls were though!

After church, we went to Jarrod's sister's house to grill and eat lunch with his Dad and family.  The girls really love their Papa so much!  So thankful for such an awesome influence in Jarrod's life.  His dad definitely is a wonderful role model.
 
I am also so incredibly thankful for my Dad!  He has always been there for me and helped me with no matter what I needed without ever asking anything in return.  He is a true picture of care and sacrifice for his family and I am so thankful for all he has taught me over the years.  Not to mention how much the girls absolutely adore their Babu!

I am so thankful for these wonderful men in my life.  I know everyone has not been as fortunate as me to have good father figures in their lives and that is one thing I definitely don't take for granted. So thankful for the love and care that my Heavenly Father has blessed me with through these men!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Happy Saturday

After a few super busy weeks, I was so glad to finally have a few days to slow down a little bit!

We had a rare kid free night last night so we went out to dinner with our good friends to celebrate Meighan's birthday! We had so much fun finally getting to really catch up with our besties and enjoy some delicious Rosie's Mexican food! They have the BEST fish tacos with marinated onions! Yum!! 

I love these people! They make me laugh so much! So thankful for these dear friends in our life!

Good thing our husbands have such a bromance! Their bond is a little scary honestly! 

We got to sleep in Saturday morning a little until I got the urge to get up and completely clean out and reorganize the whole garage which Jarrod was not real thrilled about (I can't really blame him though. My desire to declutter can be a little over the top at times).

After that, we headed over to the pool with my family while Jarrod went to golf. The girls love to swim!!

We then ended the evening with a little painting and playing in the yard! 

Have I mentioned how much I love summer?!??

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Athens Alabama


One of the blogs I follow is starting a series on fun places to see in each state and Alabama happens to be first!  And I am so excited to share my favorite place in Alabama!

I love my little hometown of Athens.  I was born and raised here and it is where I plan to raise my family as well.  Athens is located right off I-65 just south of the Tennessee border and is full of all sorts of wonderful secret must visit places! 

We have the most perfect little downtown area full of historic homes, cute shops and fun restaurants.  There are cute gift shops, clothing boutiques for men, women and children as well as an old historic general store, drug store, and a cute little book store and coffee shop.  There are also a few beauty shops, consignment stores, and antique shops downtown as well. 
Photo courtesy of Spirit of Athens. www.photos.al.com

There are several unique restaurants as well.. pizza, Mexican, ice creamburgers, bakery, deli, and good ole southern cooking can be found at the several non-chain restaurants around the square!  Kreme Delite is a little walk up cash-only ice cream stand that serves the best soft serve ice cream! 





From the square, you can walk a few blocks to the farmers' market, new public library, or the park complete with playground, duck pond, and a historic restored gas station. 


On weekends in the summer, we have the Kiddie Carnival that is just a few blocks from the downtown square.  The Kiddie Carnival has been going for over 50 years and is the perfect little inexpensive carnival for little kids full of miniature rides, cotton candy, and bingo!  My girls absolutely love it!






Athens is also host to several events throughout the year such as the singing and car shows on the square, ghost walks, the Athens Grease Festival, and the Old Time Fiddler's Convention where you can find bluegrass music competitions, crafts, amazing funnel cakes, lemonade, and rib-eye sandwiches!




Athens, Alabama is really the perfect little southern town full of grace and charm and I love to show it off!   


Find this fun print of Athens here


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Summer Capsule

It's that time of year again! Time to clean out the closet and replace with a new capsule for the season! But really though, how is it already half way through June?!?!?! My summer capsule was pretty easy for me to put together. I tried to pick items that can be very versatile between work and play considering the longer summer days allow for more play time and we have some fun vacations scheduled! I am recycling several pieces from spring as well as digging several out from storage so I ended up only buying a few pieces to complete my summer closet. I completed my whole capsule for well under my budget! I didn't count my bathing suits and beach wear or my tshirts and gym type shorts but they do tend to make an appearance pretty often in the summer time.

Once again, I am not huge on shoes and accessories. I tend to really research my shoes before buying them until I find the perfect pair so my shoes are very strategically picked. Then, I tend to wear them until there is absolutely no life left in them so needless to say most of the shoes in my closet are pretty worn but I am really in love with them all so I don't really include them in my capsule! Because honestly, after the thought and love I put into finding the perfect shoes, I am NOT throwing them out! I did add one fun pair this season though! On that same note, I don't wear or own much jewelry. I always wear my watch and maybe a simple dainty necklace. I have super sensitive skin and can only wear real platinum earrings and only for a short time before my ears feel like they are on fire so I don't even look at earrings anymore! I only own one black statement necklace but I feel like I may be over wearing it so I plan to purchase another statement necklace to help to add to my looks. Besides those, accessories will be very minimal. I think summer scarves are adorable but personally they tend to smother me so I don't have any of those counted in either! 

And yes, I understand that I am no fashion blogger or trend-setter and my style is pretty basic and simple but that is just who I am. I try to invest in pieces that are budget friendly and fit my style and needs. I enjoy sharing my capsule wardrobes on my blog because they are fun to put together and helpful to me and maybe even a little bit inspiring to someone else! So debuting a few key staples of my capsule....
1- I am so stinking excited about this chambray blazer from Loft. I snagged up one of the very last few they had left and couldn't be happier with it! Seriously the most versatile piece I own. I love that it is a little more unique and can be dressier than a typical denim jacket but can also be a little more casual as well. Plus it was 70% off when I bought it!
2 - I love Target's basic tees. I have this one in pink and white for the summer. 
3 - This picture doesn't do this plaid tunic from Target justice on the cute colors! I love the bright colors and the soft material even though Hadley told me it looked like a boy! I am a little disappointed that it doesn't button all the way down though. I would really love it if it was true button up shirt so I could wear it a few more ways. 
4 - This fun light-weight printed tank is super cool and comfortable. I love the colors in this one and have tons of ideas for different ways to style it. Target has a ton of super cute ones! 
 5 - I saw this top in pink at Gap for almost $40 but really loved the blue when I found it for a lot less at Target! 
 6 - This tshirt is a little change from my usual but I thought it was cute and could be really versatile so I snatched it off the clearance rack at Target (Target, Target, Target... do we see a trend here? Sorry, I just can't help how bad it sucks me in! I swear they have some type of poison in their store that just does something to me). 
 7 - I bought a similar tank to this from Belk back in the early spring and I see me wearing it even more this summer. 
 8 - I got this mint cardigan late last summer and have literally worn it every season. 
 9 - My Madison red cropped pants came from Belk a couple of years ago and are still one of my closet favorites. 
 10 - My Loft relaxed crops are super comfortable and I wear them all the time! Seriously, at least twice a week. 
 11 - I am so glad that these soft chambray shorts are so in style now because they are wonderful... especially the elastic waist band! I've had mine for years but I think they came from NY&Co. 
12 - I had a really hard time finding some white pants that weren't too fitted or too sheer but these white Lucky Brand Jeans I found finally were the perfect find. (Marshall's- $34)
13- My Nine West Julisa pumps from last year are still hanging around the closet. They are my most favorite shoe ever and I ALWAYS get compliments on them when I wear them. I pray they last forever! 
 14 - I wanted some comfortable sandals that didn't feel like walking on cardboard so I splurged for these Born sandals as a gift to myself for my birthday a couple of months ago. I have super high arches so need a little extra support in my flats. 
 15 - I wish I could find these Nine West pumps I bought way back in every color. They are the perfect mid-heel peep toe!
16 - I may have mentioned how much I love mint... so what is better than a converse in that color! I found these knock offs at Target. 

 Everything else in my closet is recycled from seasons past... most still hanging out from the spring capsule. My closet is so colorful and organized now with only about 35 pieces plus some shoes (I still haven't mastered getting it all down to 33) and I am so looking forward to the next few months with these fun items to mix and match

Monday, June 15, 2015

Ballet Recital

Hadley had her ballet recital on Saturday and she did a fabulous job!  

She has had a wonderful dance year with some very special teachers.  Ms. Nikki and Ms. Melissa did such a good job teaching these sweet little ones and I was so impressed with their performance.  This was Hadley's second year taking at Kelly's Studio of Dance and we could not have asked for a better experience!  

Loved all of these sweet ballerina pictures!

She had tons of fans and was so proud of all of her flowers!


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

That moment...




I confess.. it happened yesterday... that moment when you think you are doing something good and are so proud of yourself and then someone comes along and makes you feel like poo.

Yesterday, I was so proud of myself.  This has been a super busy week but I really planned ahead and made some time to squeeze in a run.  It was easy to find an excuse not to go.  It was super hot and I was super busy.  But I pushed all those excuse aside and went to the gym, hopped on the treadmill, and set my 2 mile run/walk pace to follow my half marathon training plan for the day.

And then it happened.  She came.  That super skinny, super fit girl in her super cute workout gear stepped on the treadmill right beside me, cranked it up to high speed, and started effortlessly trotting along beside me. And all of a sudden, I heard that little voice discouraging me and putting me down. 

"Look how fast she is going."  
"Wouldn't you like to look like that?" 
"Don't you know, everyone is watching you both and can see how much better she is?"
"Your stomach rolls are jiggling."
"You're so not in good shape."
"Why don't you just go ahead and quit now before you get embarrassed?"

I found my eyes shifting to her pace and her distance and her seemingly effortless workout and found myself quickly filling with envy and embarrassment.  I all of a sudden went from feeling proud and accomplished to that dreaded feeling of not being good enough.  In my mind, she was making me look sub-par and I wanted to get off that stinking treadmill and just go home. 

But I didn't!  I quickly told that little voice to use "her" as motivation, not as discouragement.  I told myself that one day I will be running an effortless quick pace for a number of miles.  That we all have to start somewhere.  That my goals are about me and improving myself and not so I can be like someone else.  That one day my legs will not jiggle and my flab will not flop.  That I have a plan and am doing a great job of sticking to that plan.  That I am good enough!

It is so easy to get discouraged and want to give up when someone or something intimidating comes along.  Especially as women, we are constantly making observations and comparisons and putting ourselves down because we aren't "as good" as the other.  It is a horrible and terrible feeling that is so hard to overcome sometimes.  Even though it is tough, and something I really struggle with, I strive to do a better job of NOT comparing myself to others and instead, being proud of myself and all I have accomplished. I've worked hard to get here and I deserve to be proud of that!


   


Monday, June 8, 2015

Girl Mom

When I first found out I was pregnant, the first thought in my mind was "Oh I hope it's a boy!"  I had this vision of the perfect one boy, one girl family.  Big brother first.  Then little sister would come in a few years so big brother could always look out for her.  

But.... we went for our 20 week ultrasound and the tech excitedly said "It's a girl!"  Of course my mom and sister started crying tears of joy.  My sister couldn't wait to buy pink monogram and big hair bows!  I was excited to but a little piece of me was thinking "Oh no what am I going to do with a girl?  I won't know how to fix her hair!"  So we busily began buying smocked dresses and froo-froo bubbles, pink shoes, and floral bedding.  And a few months later when she arrived, I couldn't wait to wrap her up in her pink hair blanket! 

Two years later, we found out we were pregnant again... with another girl!  Hadley was so excited for a little sister but a small part of me filled with a bit of disappointment.  It didn't take me long though to quickly fall in love with the idea of two little girls... sisters.. built in best friends!  The memories of having a sister growing up filled my mind and I started buying matching dresses and frilly bathing suits and dreaming of play dates and family vacations filled with princesses and baby dolls!



Somewhere over the course of time, I fell in love with being a girl mom and jumped in head first with both feet!  I've learned that the perfect family consists of love and fun and happiness.  I love days filled with Barbie dolls and dress up and look forward to days full of shopping trips and makeup. 



In my few years of being a girl mom, I've learned to fix ponytails, French braids, and ballerina buns.  I have conquered recitals and tea parties and cheer camp.  I know every single word to Frozen and can sing every Taylor Swift song out there.  And I wouldn't have it any other way!   

 

Thursday, June 4, 2015

She rises while it is yet night.

"She rises while it is yet night" - Proverbs 31:15

My goal in life is to be the Proverbs 31 woman.  I strive so hard every day to bhhe this woman.  I know I am no where near her yet but by making it a point to practice certain virtuous in my life, I find that I am getting there .... slowly.

One of those practices is getting in the habit of rising early and starting by day out on the right foot.  My work schedule requires me to get up super early so my alarm sounds off before the sun rises every day!  Over the last several months, I have set my alarm for about 20 minutes earlier than I really need so I can have a little "me" time to start my day.  The early morning hours at my house are the quietest and the stillest while everyone else is snoozing.  It is the perfect time for me to fix my cup of coffee and sit down alone.  There are a few things that I have found are perfect for me and this time...

I keep 4 items in my little "morning basket" that I use every single morning while I drink my fresh cup of coffee.

- Planner - Each morning, I take a few minutes to sit down with my calendar and daily to-do list and just jot down everything I need to do for the day.
- Notebook - After a quick little glance at what is in store for the day, I make it a point to write down at least one thing I am thankful for that day and any prayer requests I have.  
- My Devotional and Bible - I love starting each day off in God's word by reading a small devotional and spending time in the scriptures.

My absolute favorite part of my morning routine is the time I spend talking to God.  I thank him for my blessings and asks him for his strength and power as I take on the day ahead.  It is amazing the impact that a little quite time with the Lord each morning makes on my life.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Minimizing

I really enjoy reading "minimalist" blogs.  It is so inspiring to me to watch them declutter and throw out all of the stuff and realize how little we actually need to be happy and successful. 

My house is so full of stuff and it drives me nuts.  My kids have been blessed with so many awesome and wonderful friends and family and have more clothes and toys than they will ever need.  I swear half the stuff in my house, we don't even know is there.  It's sad really. 

So this summer, I am committing to becoming more minimalist in my life.  Although I honestly doubt that I will go to the extreme that some have, I am really going to try to get rid of some of the stuff and focus more on experiences for my family instead of things. 

I believe this will not only help my stress level, but also my overall happiness and contentment... and the bank account!!