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30 Days of a Thankful Heart {Day 1} To Good Health and Happiness

1 Nov

November has long be regarded as the month in which we reflect on thankfulness.  Family, friends, and lots of delicious food.  What isn’t to be thankful about those things?

During this month, I will post everyday on at least one thing or person that I am thankful for.  The posts may be short or long, but they will all be straight from my heart.

Here we go….

Day 1~~Health and Happiness

We recently took a day trip in to Broken Arrow to surprise my mom for her birthday.  I made sure to pack the camera and come cute clothes for the boys because we were also going to try to swing by a pumpkin patch and capture some perfect pictures.  Right.  Do things ever go according to plan with children in tow? Continue reading

Things I Love

16 Feb

Is it possible to have a case of the Muhndays on a Thursday?  I hope so, because I totally do.  I’d love to blame the way I feel today totally on being 24 wks preggo, but I can’t in all honesty.  I know I am still not feeling 100%, (and don’t know if I will this go round, but I hope), but today has just found me in a state of blah.

Not a fun place to be.

Part of me just wanted to crawl in bed all day.  I didn’t.  I actually got myself motivated enough to get on the elliptical.  Apparently the endorphins didn’t want to stick around.

Part of me just wanted to curl up and watch Breaking Dawn pt.1 again and again.  I settled for HGTV.  I told myself at least that way I was only committed to 30 minutes at a time.  (HA)

But this evening, the biggest part of me just wanted to cry.  Especially as I listened to my dear husband battle our darling and stubborn two-year old over bedtime.  His cries just break my heart at times. (The toddler, not the hubs..I think.)

Instead of crying I made myself look around the room, then the other room, then around the world of pinterest for things that made me smile.  I just wanted to divert the overwhelming sense of despair that seemed to be creeping up on me all day.  I want to state for the record, however, that I am in full support and actively engage in much needed and therapeutic crying sessions when needed.  Better out than in as Shrek would say.  Or is that burping?  Hmm..

Not tonight though.  I figured my husband didn’t need to walk out of one room with a crying child to encounter another.  I also felt that gentle nudging of the Spirit to look around and see the good.

This Scripture came to mind, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

So I thought on those things that surrounded me in that moment.  Very simple things and some obvious treasures that surrounded me and my life in the beautiful and the excellent.  Here is what I came up with in no particular order.

  1. My Angel Shelf: Belonged to my Mima.  A gift from my Papa to hold her angels.  It now holds my Willow Tree figures.
  2. “Oh Baby The Places You’ll Go,” a book we read nightly to the little boy we anxiously await in June. Great book!
  3. Bowl of cherries: Pretty to look at.  Better to eat. Delicious.
  4. The bulletin board I created from scrapbook paper for my writing corner. Just a fun collage.
  5. The new crib sheet Aaron brought home today that his mom had ordered.  I LOVE it!
  6. Fleece blankets.  I usually have no less than 2 floating in the living room at all times of the year.  I’m talking the cheap $5-$10 ones from Walmart or Target!
  7. Pretty handkerchiefs I picked up at a vintage shop in KY and still have yet to find a decorative home.
  8. Yes. Harry Potter.  Books. Movies. I love them all!
  9. This picture was a mish-mash of items I love. Wooden signs, my signed Jewel photo book and Lullaby CD, and the Eiffel tower I was given from my dear friend on her trip to Paris. (I WILL go one day)
  10. Our growing baby boy in his 23 wk ultrasound photo.
  11. Lindt Lindor Truffles. Yes, please
  12. Decorative crosses, especially ones that combine textures, like metal and wood.
  13. Wooden/ canvas signs with inspirational sayings, messages, etc.
  14. My wonderful boys all snuggled up
  15. Micah loving his new toddler bed and piling it with things he loves.
  16. My poetry book that my dear husband felt needed to be displayed on the shelf.
  17. Lavender roses
  18. Pretty hardback books
  19. Knowing I am not alone even when it feels that way.
  20. Having this blog to write and share a piece of my heart.

*please excuse the quality of some of the photos.  I used my iPhone for many and it is not a 4G! 

So, after compiling my list and literally laying eyes on these treasures that make my life worth loving, I didn’t feel like crying anymore.  I felt like sharing.

From my heart to yours.

What do you love that makes crying days better?

 

Putting Myself in Time Out

22 May

As you may be aware, (for all 3 of my daily readers), I have not been doing my daily blogging this week.  Due to the current hecticness of my life I am forcing myself to place some daily pursuits into a temporary timeout.

We are in the middle of a huge transition right now with our move from Kentucky back to Oklahoma and unfortunately that makes your priorities change a bit for a time. For example, packing is pretty much my top priority after taking care of Micah right now.  FUN, FUN, ,FUN!  We did take a much-needed break Friday evening to enjoy a farewell cook-out our neighbors, Heather, Nathan, and Connor, threw for us.  Great food, company, and finally some good old-fashioned cornhole competition.  Thanks you guys!  (Remember Heather, ice once a week and our friendship will bloom despite the distance!)

Despite having given away, sold, or thrown away boxes upon boxes, and sack after sack of clothing and other STUFF, we still find ourselves surrounded by more stuff to pack.  Did I mention we have had a storage unit 2/3 of the way filled for over a month now, and yet there is more.  Is it breeding when we are sleeping?  That’s my conclusion.

Thankfully my in-laws have graciously stepped up to the plate and are helping with the packing, cleaning, and general fixing-upping of the house.  My MIL is a sight to behold; a packing wunderkind.  After making numerous moves as a pastor’s wife, she has packing locked down.  I swear, for every 2 boxes I pack, she packs 10, and sewed a few blankets, a cornhole bag, and spent some time teaching Micah the art of packing.  It’s a gift!  Glad we are on the receiving end!  My FIL , while being a very gifted Pastor, is also a skilled painter, and our walls are artfully spackled at the moment, just waiting to receive their shiny new coat of paint.  Did I mention he also planted our flowerbed, ran errands, did some packing, and played with his grandson too?  Yep, they are pretty fantastic.  They were here on Thursday, so they are my official Thankful Thursdays award winners!

The other huge item on our plate right now is Aaron’s graduation from seminary Saturday.  It is literally an all-day event, which puts the above mentioned plans on hold!  I am so proud of all the hard-work he has put in these past three years.  Way to go sweetheart!  I have a feeling I might tear up as he walks the stage tomorrow.  A wonderful husband, fantastic father, and now a minister with a Masters of Divinity degree.  He’s quite a catch!

Two final big ticket items on the to-do list:  The Lost finale and saying our farewells.  Both will make me cry and both are ending way too soon.  Maybe the finale will reveal how to discover an alternate timeline or maybe we’ll experience random flashbacks so we don’t have to say goodbye to such wonderful friends.  The screen is getting a little blurry as I am typing…..

Needless to say, there  are a few things keeping me busy right now.  Since I made a commitment to myself and my readers to blog weekly and daily, I just wanted to ask for some grace as the blogging will be spotty for a bit until we get settled in our new house.  I’m going to try and carve out some time, like now, and give some updates and do the dailies when I can, so please check back soon.  Thanks for your understanding!

Keep us in your prayers as we travel and begin this new journey.  I’m excited to see what God has in store along the way.

Pack it in

The Five Year Mark: Thankful Thursdays

13 May

Five years ago I said I do.  I do promise to love and cherish, support and help, trust and rely on, honor and protect, and give my heart to Aaron Christopher Tiger.  I’d do it all again.

The past five years has seen us live in 3 different houses and towns, 2 states, 12 different jobs between the two of us, 1 Masters degree, 10 months of pregnancy, and 7 months of a new life.  That doesn’t include all the hopes, dreams, losses, gains, changes, friends, fights, hugs, kisses, challenges, adventures, and journeys that define us as a couple.

It has been worth every little moment and each momentous event.  I would not trade a second of my life with Aaron.  We are at the end of one journey, ready to embark on a new path, and I am grateful I get to share this with my best friend.  We don’t know what the next 5 years will bring, but we will face it all, together, trusting in the One who created us for each other.  God will guide us, grow our love, and give us all we need to follow His path.

We are eager to continue this journey of parenthood; watching Micah grow and become his own person.  We hope to raise him with a heart for God that surpasses his parents.

Feelings can ebb and flow, but it is our choice to love one another each day and love God first, that sustains us and will carry us through the next 5 years and far beyond.

I love you Aaron.  Thank you for everything.  I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

My Love

A Muffin for the New Mom: Thankful Thursdays

6 May The Boys

It was sometime in January when I realized my neighbor was pregnant.  I had seen them move in two doors down and I had told myself many times that we needed to go introduce ourselves and be neighborly.  They were our age, or near it, but for some excuse always come up when I thought about making the trip over.  Maybe it was her.  I wasn’t sure they would want to meet the neighbors; a lot of people don’t these days, content to live private lives.  More than that though, I was intimidated.  This girl was really pretty.  Like the kind of pretty that makes you want to hate them just for being pretty, or if I was a guy, I would say she was hot.  It’s intimidating.  Sometimes the pretty people aren’t always the most friendly.  She did have this really great wooden tree with lights on it by her front door though that made her seem more homey.  It was my kind of style.  Still, we remained strangers.

Even after the destructive ice storm swept through Kentucky and killed the power on our street for over a week, we did not extend a greeting.  We did notice that the giant tree across the street from their house come crashing down during the storm.  That would of been the perfect opportunity to offer to help clean it up, especially since the tree’s owners did not do it.  I did feel bad for her, being without power and pregnant.  I remember remarking to Aaron, right before we left for our trip to Gatlinburg, that I didn’t envy her being uncomfortable already, and then to not have warmth.  Little did I know at that moment, but that was exactly what I was, we would just make that little discovery the day we came back from vacation.

You would think that finally, after having common ground to share, it would have been easy to walk over and say hello, especially since I kept feeling a certain nudging from You Know Who.  Not Aaron, though he was bugging me as well.  I mean, I was tired and nauseous and emotional and….. You get the picture.  It literally took a sign for me to follow instructions.

It was May by this time and a little blue sign appeared in their garden, announcing the arrival of their new baby boy, Connor.  That was enough.  My hospitality gift kicked into overdrive and my desire to hold a new baby was the icing of the cake.  I had just purchased some muffin mix for a bake sale at work, but I figured they didn’t need all of them.  I told Aaron I was making them and to get ready to meet the neighbors!  Approximately 45 minutes later we stood nervously outside their door, basket of hot, chocolate chip muffins in hand.  I almost chickened out when it took them a minute to answer the door.

Once we were in the door and Nathan, the dad, all but tossed us his newborn son, I knew we would be friends.  The kicker was when he introduced Connor’s mom, Heather.  I literally laughed out loud as we realized we had quite a few things in common already.  The visit lasted well over an hour and the friendship between the Heathers has blossomed and will hopefully continue to grow.  I’m thankful to know I was able walk two doors down and find a someone who was looking for the same thing I was; a friend.

I often wonder how much better those 5 months would have been if I had just listened and responded to that little voice nudging me to just reach out in friendship.  Instead, I let fear, anxiousness, busyness, and plain old stubbornness rob me of a beautiful gift God was offering me.

My friendship with Heather has been one of the greatest blessings I have received while living here in Kentucky.  I had continually been praying for a friend, and among the many He provided, how amazing that He provided not only a friend, but a neighbor, two doors down, that was a mother of a little boy.  Someone to share insight, wisdom, tears, laughter, frustration, and joys.  Someone who has a heart like mine.

It has been a joy to watch our boys grow together these past 7 months.  I even got the inside track of being a new mom watching her with Connor before Micah arrived.  Heather has run over to watch Micah on a moment’s notice, and we have returned the favor.  We get to cruise Walmart knowing the other understands the fussy little boy in the shopping cart.  We get to share real life, and that is the best thanks I’ll ever get for a basket full of muffins.


The Boys

The Boys

 

Connor, Micah, and Heather

Us Moms don’t get on camera too much!

Thankful Thursdays Premier

29 Apr

I am thankful for the people and things in my life on a daily basis, but expressing my gratefulness on Thursdays allows for lovely alliteration. The premier edition of Thankful Thursdays features someone and something I have very recently been blessed by.

God works in mysterious ways often, and other times He works in ways that shout of His amazing plans for your life. My recent post, What S.H.A.P.E. am I?, received a very sweet and encouraging comment from the author of another WordPress blog. Jana, of The Secret Life of the Bishop’s Wife. I, of course, checked out her blog and was delighted to find a kindred spirit. Once again, God used an ordinary medium, such as the comment option, to pour His hope and encouragement into my life; and at a time I am earnestly seeking it. Jana had recently blogged on almost the exact same topic as I had, and her heart was so transparent and beautiful. I immediately whispered my thanks to God, or as my darling husband observed, I randomly spoke to the ceiling.

I have since read more of Jana’s wonderfully insightful, funny, well-written, and encouraging blog and my heart has been flooded with joy at her words, and how God is working through her. I also cried, because I am an emotional mush sometimes when my gift of empathy kicks in, as it did when I read the recent post about her darling son, Rowan. In, What are You Believing for?, Jana shares her family’s recent news concerning Rowan’s health, and while the diagnosis is not encouraging, the hope she shares is contagious. I encourage you to check it out and join us in lifting Rowan, Jana, and her husband, Barry, in prayer.

So, Jana, I am thankful for you and your willingness to share your beautiful heart through your words. I too, am grateful that we have become blogging buddies! I look forward to seeing how God moves in our lives!