Friday, April 30, 2010

SAHM in da' HOUSE

So, since I became a stay-at-home-mom I kinda fell off the blogging bandwagon. I was overwhelmed with my transition and had A LOT going on and well... that's my excuse. Sometimes we need a break you know. I needed a blogging break. I didn't read many blogs, nor did I post. I needed to step away from the computer for a little while and focus on my family! I am learning how to balance everything at home and still do the things I love... one of them being blogging.

With that being said, let me share with you how being at home has been! To sum it up in one word... WONDERFUL! Absolutely wonderful! I feel so blessed to be able to be a SAHM. Beyond blessed. Undeserving even.

I got Addison on a great schedule that let's me sleep until 7 or 8. It's great! She has been on a schedule since she was about 4 weeks. Thankfully my child doesn't HAVE to be on a strict schedule so we always have some flexibility. I am not going to get too into her schedule etc. (saving that for another post).

So, what does being a SAHM mean to me? It means, I am a better mom. It means I am a better wife. It means I am a better daughter. It means I am a better friend. Overall... it means I am a BETTER ME!

Why? When I was working from 8-5 and going to the gym for an hour 3-4 days a week, I was STRESSED! Cooking dinner stressed me out. Grocery shopping stressed me out. Keeping a clean house stressed me out. Talking on the phone stressed me out. Why all the stress. Well at the end of the day... I only had about 3 hours with Addison before she went to bed. And 4 with my husband. It wore on me. BIG TIME! I wasn't being a good "anything." I was selfish with that time and didn't have the energy or time to keep up the important relationships in my life.

I am not perfect now by any means. I am still a busy lady. I have yet to be asked "So what do you do all day??" But when I am... I have a list of things to tell who ever so dares ask me that. Thankfully, I take care of things that I used to take care of on the weekends so I can enjoy my weekends with my family. No stress, no "have to's." It's amazing.

Being home with Addison means that I will never miss any of her "firsts." I am so thankful for that. It means having SO much time to love on those sweet cheeks. It means going on play dates with other sweet babies.

I am working on a few things to be able to have some income. We shall call this income... "play money." It's what Adam and I will use to "play" some. Go on a small beach vacay perhaps... shop a tiny bit... who knows! I will let you in on those secrets when they are more firm :)

I realize being a SAHM isn't for everyone. Some people don't want to and I think that's completely a personal choice. Whatever is best for YOU and YOUR family! Some people can't do it because of finances. That makes me SAD! I had a friend say to me once "I am a better mother when I come home after being with uplifting adults all day!" And I totally get that! But this is what is best for ME and MY family! I wouldn't trade it for anything and I wouldn't change a thing! This is the hand of God playing out His plan for me and my family and I feel that 100%. And I am so beyond thankful to Him for all He has provided for me to be able to be a SAHM!

My beautiful family out for my dad's birthday dinner! How can I NOT stay home with this beautiful angel I call my daughter??


ALM with her Grammy

ALM with her Paw

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

BM ATL: Lovely Ladies

Since I shared what God laid on my heart in the last post, I think it's only fitting to show you some pics and tell you about the lovely Christian ladies I met & spent Saturday with!

I have been looking forward to meeting some of these girls for a LONG time. I love their blogs, follow them on Twitter, email, Skype and even have phone chats with some of them! So it was almost like seeing a long lost friend, except I hadn't ever SEEN them before.

The day started off with me getting up at 5 am to make it to our 7:30 breakfast at Cracker Barrel in ATL! I rode with Amy and Lianna to Atlanta and you would have never guessed we hadn't met before. We were like 3 best friends catching up. And it turns out, we all have a lot in common and we might have laughed a time or two (or a thousand)!

Amy and I had lunch recently (I didn't blog about that bc I was still on my hiatus-whoops) and we will have many lunches, dinners, double dates, shopping trips, etc in our future. So thankful God placed her in my path! I had been praying for an "Amy" and there she was. She is absolutely stunningly beautiful and you know what... she has no idea!! She is beautiful inside and out. This woman has a heart for the Lord and after everything she has been through in her past, she looks positively ahead to her future and what God has planned for her... her personality and positive outlook is infectious.

Here's Amy, Lianna and me at breakfast.

Along with these 2 lovely ladies, Saturday morning, we went to breakfast at Cracker Barrel where we met some new friends... fellow bloggers and Twitter friends, Erin, Mrs. NCF , Trina, Megan, Rachel, Natalie, Kim, Jennifer, Rachel, and Kelly. It was WONDERFUL to meet them all and finally put personalities and voices with their faces :)
Here we all are at Cracker Barrel!


Here I am with Erin. I mean, GORGEOUS, YES! She is absolutely a sweetie pie. We have been friends since 2008. We met when we both had some "after marriage weight" issues :) So we started Weight Watchers Wednesday with Mojito Maven! Then we were pregnant together. I leaned on her a lot for advice because Hudson and Addison are exactly 5 months apart so she had been through everything I was going through. She was a HUGE source of strength for me for lots of reasons. And yes ladies, she is as sweet as she appears on her blog.


This is me with the beautiful Natalie.We are recent Twitter friends, but OH, I can tell you I will be making some trips to Atlanta to see this woman! She is a hoot and we are pretty much two peas in a pod I'm afraid! (that could be bad).

And here I am with Natalie and Jennifer. And NO they are not twins! hahaha. Of course they are... and the three of us could prove to be a real problem if we get together. I kid. They are pretty & sweet ladies. They even got ALM a present! Thoughtful ladies.


I was thrilled to get to meet Kelly. She has so much grace and she is such a sweet, beautiful soul.



Here I am with Mrs. NCF. Ladies, I always knew she and I would love each other when we met but we were like 5 year old kids. We linked arms and practically skipped to the bathroom together! She is just so genuinely sweet and such a beautiful lady! A true lady!



During the conference I also met some other sweet ladies... Jenna and Lauren. I sat by Jenna and had some good chat time with Lauren! Glad to call them both new friends :)
Here's Beth during lunch in the overflow room... she was doing a Q & A. During


Here's two group shots. One after the conference was over and the other was at the West Egg Cafe where we ate dinner with Pink Sass. She and I sat together and we were cracking up A LOT! Ignore my greasy/gross look :) It was a rainy day! And well... this girl's hairs frizz!!!!!!!!


Now before I go... it was THIS moment, oh no wait... it was when she called Coke, "Pop," that I realized Megan was NOT a Southerner. To understand the intensity of this... you had to be there! But we had earlier discussed what was considered "south." When we were ordering and she asked "What's a grit?" and she used the word "Pop" I realized NOT HER STATE :) ha! She is such a fun, sweet, beautiful girl!! A real JOY to be around! So refreshing.


Pink Sass, Amy and I enjoying some desserts!! Mmmmmm

It was wonderful to meet them all! Each and every one of them are amazing women and I blessed that blogging brought us all together. It was one AMAZING weekend. One that I really needed! Love you all! XOXO

Monday, April 26, 2010

So Long Insecurity... PEACE OUT! Beth Moore ATL

Hi strangers. Expect another post about my sabbatical from blogging. I have a GREAT excuse. :)

But on to what I am making my BIG COMEBACK with! You have probably seen on other blogs and on twitter that a lot of bloggers were headed to see Beth Moore in Atlanta. "So Long Insecurity" is what the conference was about. And if anyone says they aren't insecure; they are telling a big one.

If you are an insecure woman and I would go with 99% of us are (about something) then please read this post. Some of this came straight from Beth Moore's mouth and some comes straight from God Himself (scripture). The rest is my opinions on this subject.

I am going to break this ATL trip into two parts but first I think it's important for me to share what God has laid on my heart. Tomorrow I will share pics from some wonderful Christian women (all bloggers) that I met. We got to worship together, learn together and just have some good ol' fun!

We all feel insecure about something, right? Or if you are like me, it's lots of somethings. My insecure thoughts consist of things like:

- I am not skinny enough.
- I am not pretty enough.
- I don't have the nicest clothes.
- My skin isn't clear.
- I am getting wrinkles.
- I look different after having a baby.
- Will I ever look "normal" again?

Most of my insecurities lie in my appearance. SAD, but true.

But after this conference, I realized I had insecurities in other areas of my life. I wasn't ever really aware they were insecurities.

I first want to share with you what I took away from this conference. It was amazing to see how God used this wonderful woman (Beth) to get some serious points across that I know hit home to all 300,000 women nationwide that were either there or watching the simulcast.

We, as women, have NOTHING to gain from our insecurities. NADA! Our insecurities are not our weaknesses, they are UNBELIEF! When she said that, I felt a knot in my stomach. "Holy cow, she was right! I don't believe I am skinny enough/pretty enough, etc!" But why? His name is SATAN! And he works through the media A LOT!

Jeremiah 9:20 "Now, O women, hear the word of the LORD; open your ears to the words of his mouth. Teach your daughters how to wail; teach one another a lament."

I haven't been listening to God. I have been letting other people (tv, magazines, etc) how I should feel about myself. After all, I am God's child. I am all His. He made me the way HE wanted me made. Who am I to detest that?

If we as women were more SECURE, we would think less often of ourselves. Makes sense right? If I thought I was skinny enough, I wouldn't feel the need to spend 2 hours in the gym, just maybe 30 minutes and donate that other hour and a half to serving others for GOD'S GLORY! That is what all this is about anyway!

I won't put the entire chapter of 2 Timothy 3 in this post, but please read it.

I was sharing with my husband, Adam, what all I learned and took away and the biggest thing I took away was a statement Beth made about midway through the conference. She said, "How much more likely would we be able to forgive if we were secure?" HELLO! AMEN! That's it! If I was a secure woman, I would be able to forgive MUCH easier. And I said right then and there to myself and God. "I want to be better at forgiveness!" To do that, I need to gain some security in areas of my life. I can only do that through God and His amazing love and grace!

I realized that not only am I insecure about my physical appearance, I am insecure in my faith. Often times I don't feel worthy of God's love, grace or forgiveness. But I was reminded this weekend that He gives that freely, I just have to take it and know that it is mine. I am to be an imitator of God and I have to feel secure in my walk to do that.

Two other BIG statements Beth said: "To be secure we have to know that someone unfailingly loves us." That person is GOD! "You can't run Him off or out sin His forgiveness!"

WOAH! That's a big one to process!

Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

Girls, I could go on and on about what I learned and what God laid on my heart, but I wanted to share the high points that I took away. God speaks to each of us differently. But after hearing everything Beth had to say, God spoke to me LOUD AND CLEAR! I will never be the same after that. I feel changed in my thinking and am going to work hard in changing my doing.

I am not perfect. FAR FROM IT! But thankfully my God forgives me and leads me. I am of the flesh and we are sinful people. But God offers HIS forgiveness FREE! We just have to ask for it and accept Him!

Our insecurities hold us back from more than we can imagine. I, for one, want my daughter to be more secure than me. I want to shield her from the ways of the world and the ONLY way to do that, is through prayer to the One who can shield her, Jesus Christ!