Getting to Know Me

You guys, I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am to be starting this adventure. I have always loved to write but it’s not something I’ve ever even thought of pursuing before. I am just so thankful for a husband who really listens to me and encourages me to live out my dreams. Also, for him to know me even better than I know myself sometimes. He’s been encouraging my writing even before I realized that it was something that I really enjoyed.

I am a BIG planner. I don’t feel like I’ve always been this way but ever since I’ve gotten married, this has definitely increased! I am most successful when I’ve made lists and when I have a plan in place. So with that being said, I’ve created some lists for you to get to know me.

10 Things About Me

1.I strive to love Jesus above all else, including my family. I fully believe this is what we are called to do and I know from personal experience that whenever my relationship with my creator is where it should be, all other aspects of my life go so much better. I can love my husband and daughter more fully when I love my God first!

2. I am a wife to my wonderful and amazing husband, Brad. We met on a blind date back in 2011 and we had our rough patches but overall it was pretty smooth sailing from there! He is my best friend and the love of my life. He is extremely passionate about life and is a dreamer. He is an entrepreneur at heart and I try to encourage him to follow his dreams. I feel like just yesterday we got married but at the same time I can’t remember my life without him. He challenges me and loves me deeply. Marriage is far from easy but it is most definitely worth it!

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3. Last February we had our sweet little girl, Sadie. She is just the best thing that has ever happened to us! She is walking up a storm and keeps us on our toes. She is full of personality and just brings us so much joy. She is not shy and pretty much loves everyone she encounters. She is definitely her mama’s girl and will snuggle up with me in the mornings. One of my favorite times with her is when she wakes up from her naps. I will pick her up and she’ll just lay her head on my shoulder for a little while before she is ready to get down. She just absolutely melts my heart. Being a mom is the best thing ever and I find myself extremely blessed to be able to stay at home with her. Which brings me to number 4.

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4. I am a stay at home mom. This is quite seriously the best job! I 100% chose this “job” and have not regretted this decision once. I love being able to love on my little girl all day long. I am able to watch her grow and learn. I get to play with her and read her books all day long. I’ve been able to take her to the park, the pool, the zoo and on weekly play dates with her friends (and mine) and with her cousin and grandma. This is the perfect life for me!

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5. Throwing it back a ways…I found out about the sport of volleyball in the 8th grade. I fell in love with this sport from the beginning. I was never the best, but I truly enjoyed playing and watching this sport. I was on club teams and played almost year round for several years. When I graduated from high school, I ended up attending a small Christian university that did not have volleyball when I started. After my first semester they ended up starting a Varsity and JV team. I played for the JV team and my coach recommended me to the high school coach to coach the JV team at the high school. This was such an amazing experience for me. I was able to coach a great group of girls and found that coaching is so fun! I even ran my own tournament while coaching. That was such a crazy experience and I loved every minute of it. Oh and to top that off, my girls won the whole tournament! I was one proud coach!

6. I got my teaching degree from Northwest Missouri State University. GO BEARCATS!!!! I went on to teach 6th grade for 1 year and 4th grade for 2 years in a suburb of Kansas City. It’s actually the school district that I grew up in so I ended up teaching with quite a few teachers who taught me at one point!

7. For my 24th birthday, Brad got me skydiving as my present. It was the craziest and coolest thing I think I’ve ever done (besides having a child). Not gonna lie, if I wasn’t attached to a professional jumper there would have been NO WAY that I would have jumped out of that plane. Holy moly….mind blowing! I am incredibly glad that I did it but am perfectly fine to never do it again.

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8. This past October I ran my first (and if I have my way, last) half marathon. Team World Vision came to my church and talked with all of us about raising money and awareness for the children in Africa who have to walk about 3 miles one way to get gross and disgusting water for their families. These children miss out on school and they get diseases from the disgusting water. My heart was truly moved and I felt that God was calling me to join the other 300 people from our church to run. Overall, I ended up raising enough money to save 14 lives and it was truly the experience of a lifetime. It was hard and challenging but I am so thankful that I did it. I should also mention that my amazing mama and husband ran the half marathon with me. We all completed it and I’m so proud of us!

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9. On our first anniversary, Brad and I got our very first pet together. We picked up our little Ella Bear in Iowa the weekend after our anniversary. She is such a loving and energetic dog. She is a great snuggler and I love her to pieces. I can’t imagine our life without her. She is truly an amazing dog and is AMAZING with Sadie. I just know they are going to be the best of friends!

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10. The biggest thing in our lives right now is that we are part of a church plant. The name of our church is the Grove and we are located in the Northland of Kansas City. This has been such an incredible journey. At times, I’ve doubted whether we were supposed to be a part of this but God would always (and still does) remind me that this is exactly where he has called us to be. The challenges have been so good and I’ve grown so much. I am incredibly thankful for all of the wonderful people who are a part of the church plant. I truly enjoy spending time with them weekly and “doing life” with them, as we like to call it. These people are amazing and doing something for God’s Kingdom together is an amazing blessing.

Things I Love:

Family walks on beautiful days.

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Quiet time in the morning before Sadie wakes up. I drink my coffee, read my Bible and spend time in prayer with my faithful and loving God.

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Quality time with my friends and family/real and honest conversations with them.

One on one time with my husband. I love the conversations that we have.

Watching our Sadie girl learn and grow. She is constantly learning something new and it’s incredible to try to see things through her eyes.

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I love, love, love watching her laugh. It is the most joyful noise I’ve ever heard.

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Watching Brad and Sadie together.

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Estes Park, CO. My favorite place in the United States.

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A good book that captures my attention and draws me in from the very get go. I love when it’s a struggle to put it down.

BUBBLE BATHS

Growing and finding out who I am, especially now that I’m a mom and wife. There is something to learn about myself every day.

Blogging

Being a wife and mama!

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I’ve created this blog as a place for me to come and fellowship with other people. I am an extrovert and sometimes being a stay at home mom doesn’t allow for a lot of other adult time. I love to write and so after much discussion, Brad and I decided that I would create my own blog. I am excited to use my passion for writing and my passion for people to develop this space. I hope you love it as much as I do and that we can all grow together. So grab your favorite latte, a comfy chair and let’s enjoy some fellowship!

 

kylie

 

Welcome to My New Space

Over the weekend Brad and I had some really good conversations. We took the time to sit down and talk about our dreams and what we can do to reach those dreams.

I opened up with him and shared how I’m afraid to want more for this blog because I assume I’m just going to fail at it. If I know from the beginning I’m going to fail, then I don’t even want to get my hopes up and invest in it. Brad asked me some questions that got me to think about why I would fail. He mentioned that I of course will fail if I don’t even try. He encouraged me to really go for it and to start investing some money into making my blog exactly what I want it to be. I am so incredibly thankful for this man and that he believes in me so much!

Dream Quote

This weekend I downloaded an ebook from Abby at Just a Girl and Her Blog. It has been incredibly helpful! I have also been asking tons of questions from my good friend Lauren at Sobremesa Stories. With the help of those two women and the encouragement and help from my husband, I have decided to really make this blog a space that I love!

Changes I Have Already Made

  • I have bought my own domain and you will now find me at Fellowship and Lattes (www.fellowshipandlattes.com). I am so excited to have my very own space!
  • I have also changed the look of it. I am still in the process of turning it into exactly what I want, so bear with me.
  • I have created a Pinterest account for my blog and you can find that here: Fellowship and Lattes Pinterest.
  • I have also created a Facebook page that you can find here: Fellowship and Lattes Facebook Page.

Changes I Want To Make

  • I want to update my about me page and make it something wonderful where you can really connect with me and get to know me.
  • I want to get an Instagram account up and running specifically for Fellowship and Lattes.
  • I want to work on creating some more posts with different categories and themes.
  • I want to set up a schedule of sorts for myself in order to blog as much as I would like while still taking care of things around my house and being the best mom I can be.

This will be my only post this week as I work on the items I mentioned above. Please check out my new space and let me know what you like/dislike. I can use all the help I can get! I hope to see you all next week as I come back more ready than ever! Have a great week friends!

kylie

How I Met the Love of My Life

In honor of our 3 year anniversary this past Tuesday, I thought I would share with you all how Brad and I met.

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This is the very first picture we ended up taking together. It was the night we met and we were just playing around with sparklers (my favorite firework). This was completely on accident but one of my favorite pictures!

It was a whirlwind and all happened kind of fast. We originally met on a blind date….yes I know…crazy! It was on the 4th of July and making the decision to go meet him was a hard one for me. I don’t do awkward situations, especially on purpose! Believe it or not, it was my mom that encouraged me to go! “What do you have to lose by going to meet him in an environment you’re comfortable with and when you have somewhere else to go?”

Brad, my husband, went to college at Iowa State with one of my brother’s friends. It was this friend that said I must meet this guy. I was hesitant at first and actually put it off for months…6 to be exact. Finally, the 4th of July came around and my brother and his friends were all getting together to hang out. Brad would be there if I wanted to meet him. My original answer was “ok” but after a day or so I changed my mind. I was dressed and getting ready to head to my friend’s house when my mom pulled me aside and said she thought I should go and meet him. It was with people I knew my entire life and people I was comfortable with. He was the only person I wouldn’t know and I had somewhere else to go. If it didn’t work out, then leave! No. Big. Deal. I’d be lying if I didn’t say there were some tears involved before agreeing to go. (Those kinds of things really stress me out!) She prayed for me and off I went. I was a surprise to him because last he heard I wasn’t coming. We ended up hitting it off and he even went to my friends house with me later on that evening.

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I’d love to say it was smooth sailing from there but…no dice! We went on our first date just 3 days later to a Royals’ game (GO ROYALS!!). We had  a great time and he got me out of my comfort zone to sing the song “I’ve Got Friends in Low Places” with him. Our dates continued and I was really enjoying getting to know him. He was a really great guy with a heart for the Lord and I LOVED that! He had this desire to move to Haiti in a year and do missions overseas for about a year, possibly more. WOAH….I definitely put the brakes on! This is not at all what I felt like God was calling me to do with my life. I didn’t feel called to leave Kansas City. In my mind, I was supposed to stay in Kansas City, finish getting my teaching degree and start teaching in Liberty where I grew up. Haiti was NOT part of that plan. I was confused as to why God would put a guy in my life that our life plans weren’t going to match up. I was falling for him more everyday so after digesting this news, I decided I was ready to end the relationship. I couldn’t keep falling in love with him when he was going to move overseas and I wasn’t going to go with him. I talked this over with my mom and once again she had great advice. “A lot can happen and change in a year….for both of you. Give it time, kylie girl.” So, I did.

About 6 months into our relationship, on Christmas Eve, God showed me that Brad was the guy I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I knew that I never wanted to experience another Christmas without him. I didn’t know what our future would entail (Haiti ended up not happening for either of us) but I knew that I was supposed to experience life and all God had to offer with Brad by my side. I’m a planner and I like to know what is going to happen, but God was once again, showing me that He is in charge and His plans for my life are going to be way better than my own.

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We started talking marriage after this and after 11 months of dating, we got engaged. Our wedding was set for 7 months later in January of 2013. This is a day I will forever remember, as it is the day that I got to marry the love of my life. The adventures I have already experienced and the ones I have to look forward to being married to him are endless. I’m so excited to share more of our story with you!

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On Our Anniversary

Today marks 3 years since Brad and I said, “I do” to each other. It was a beautiful day and was absolutely perfect in my eyes. I remember being really excited about planning a January wedding. Many thought we were crazy but we got engaged in June and neither of us wanted a long engagement. I thought the idea of a January wedding sounded beautiful. I remember the stress of planning the wedding. I remember the silly fights we had in the process. For example, we fought about what kind of favor we should give out at the reception….seriously?!  I also remember the fun we had doing things together and dreaming about the kind of life we wanted to share. I remember taking walks around Watkins Mill and dreaming and talking for hours. I remember all of those days just like they were yesterday.

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This picture was taken back when we were babies and just dating. Little did I know that I would be engaged to this wonderful man just 5 months after this picture!

We got married in a beautiful church at dusk with candles shining in the windows. At our reception we had a hot chocolate bar that I was super excited about! I had a friend of mine make me a GORGEOUS fur coat to wear over my dress for our outside pictures. You can find her stuff at KJ Clothing Design. The weather was actually amazing for a January wedding. It was in the 50’s and I almost didn’t even need my coat!

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Our photographer was Aaron Clark and you can find him at Aaron Clark Photography. My sister-in-law, Chelsea, knew him from Branson, MO which is where he is located. He does amazing work and is willing to travel. He did a fantastic job and made us laugh the whole time. The whole day was just perfect and when I look back on it, I smile.

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This day, three fast years later, there is snow on the ground and falling all around. The temperature is 18 degrees, which is a far cry from the weekend we got married! So much has changed and so much has happened. We have lived in 2 homes, have a dog and have our first child who is going to turn ONE next month! We have had to live apart for 7 months due to his job (which coincided with my pregnancy-I’ll save that for another post). We have been in pure bliss and we’ve had many disagreements.

There is not one thing that I would change about my marriage. I love him more today than the day I said “I do.” I have chosen to love him when things were hard or when I was mad at him. He has chosen to love me despite my emotional side making “issues” out of nothing or by making situations into something way bigger than they were. There is no one else in this world that I would rather do life with.

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He is the love of my life. My best friend. The father of our daughter. A great big brother. An awesome uncle. A wonderful son/son-in-law. A super handy-man. A hard worker. A follower of God. A great leader for our family. He is a dreamer. He is kind and compassionate. He is so PATIENT and loving. He is my husband and I’m so glad he is mine!

Happy Anniversary my love!! These first 3 years have flown by and have been wonderful. I can’t wait to spend the next 70 with you and see where life and God takes us!

I love you!

kylie

Learning to Embrace the Mess

I am someone that likes my house to be picked up, pretty much at all times. I don’t like big messes. I really enjoy when my house is clean but personally HATE to clean it.

Every night I like everything put back in it’s place. I like the dishes done. I like pillows and blankets put back where they belong. I just like having some order to my life and my home.

Well…being married and having a 10 month old doesn’t always allow for this. So, I’m learning to embrace the mess! Sometimes I do better than others and there are also situations that I embrace messiness better in than others.

For instance, I’m learning to let it go that my husband will hardly ever actually put his dirty clothes IN the hamper. It’s not the end of the world. I’m learning that some nights we’re all tired and the dishes just aren’t going to get done. I can always do them in the morning and that is OKAY. I’m learning that Sadie’s toys don’t always have to be picked up at every nap or even at night after she goes to bed. I can pretty easily still walk around those toys. These are some things that are easier for me to embrace.

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The things that are harder for me to embrace….Letting Sadie start to feed herself, especially when it comes to things like spaghetti or ravioli. Oh. My. Goodness. THAT is a mess!!!! BUT…she is learning a life skill for herself. She is developing her fine motor skills and her hand to mouth coordination. She is learning to be independent. Giving her certain cabinets and drawers she can play in and pull items out of while I’m in the kitchen cooking or in the bathroom getting ready. These are things she can’t break but keeps her happy while I’m doing something else. It’s not difficult for me to clean up later.

Learning to Embrace the Mess

 

You guys, this is HARD for me at times. It is getting easier every day that I learn to let go though. Being a wife and a mom REQUIRES that I let some things go. This is good for me.

God has been teaching me so much lately that everything is a CHOICE! In situations that don’t go the way I would like, I have the CHOICE to freak out and get upset OR see it for what it really is and let it go. I have the CHOICE to get angry OR find the joy. This is very difficult for me but I’m learning. Slowly. But still learning.
I love how God teaches us stuff in the most simplest of things, like keeping things picked up. Who knew that could be turned into a life lesson?! I’d love for you to share in the comments how God is working in your life right now and the lessons he is teaching you!

 

kylie

2016 Goals

This year Brad and I decided to be really intentional about setting goals for ourselves as individuals and as a family. We just want to start being more intentional with our lives and not waste what God has given us. So, January 1st we sat down and took about 30 minutes to an hour thinking and creating goals together. We did the family goals together and it was so good to talk through what we would like our year to look like as a family. There were some things that I wish we had done differently this past year and so we made those goals for this year. We created our individual goals alone but when we had trouble making them a SMART goal (explained below), we talked it over with each other and helped one another.

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Happy New Year!!!

 

Dave Ramsey has a book called EntreLeadership. He mentions 7 different areas where it is good to set goals. So we broke our goals down for ourselves and our family by these 7 categories (or at least the ones that were relevant to us). I have not personally read this book but Brad has and highly recommends it. Go check it out if you want some further information on it.

The categories that Dave Ramsey suggests breaking things down by are as follows:

Career, Financial, Spiritual, Physical, Intellectual, Family, Social

Like I mentioned above, we tried to follow the SMART system when it came to setting the goals for ourselves this year. This is what SMART stands for:

Specific

Measurable

Attainable

Realistic

Timely

We chose to follow this acronym because it just helps us set goals that can be met and are not too broad. Broad goals are hard to meet and hard to follow. We wanted our goals to be specific and something that we could track as the year went on. A goal of exercising more could mean so many different things and doesn’t really help motivate me to do anything. A goal of working out 5 times a  week and doing 10 minute abs twice a week is something very specific. It helps me stay focused on what it is exactly that I am wanting.

I am so thankful for setting goals this year. I have found that they have already helped me stay on track. We haven’t done this before but am looking forward to how our year turns out and how God works through our lives in 2016. I would highly encourage you to take some time to set individual and family goals. I think that it is such a great way to start off the year to make it a successful one and one that you can look back on and be proud of. Here are our family goals and my individual goals.

Family Goals:

-once a month have a couple over for dinner

-continue Sunday lunches with Clawson side

-see Paulsen side once a month (whether they come here or we go there)

-weekly date night at home

-once a month go OUT on a date

-go on a 20 minute walk once a week (weather permitting)

-read scripture together daily

-create a monthly budget/review once a week

-save up for a new car without having to take out a loan

My Individual Goals:

-learn how to garden

-continue to workout at least 5 times a week

-do 10 minute abs twice a week

-make a weekly/daily meal plan

-develop and use a daily prayer plan

-follow developed budget

-weekly day date with a friend

-meet one new stay at home mom friend

Some of these goals we started last year and would love to continue. Others are new and we think would really grow us as individuals and as a family.

What are some of your goals for 2016? Have you already created some or are you thinking about creating some now? I’d love to hear from you! Comment below 🙂

kylie

When We Fall…

This past week Sadie has started to walk consistently. She is no longer dabbling with it and trying here and there. Now if she falls down, she picks herself right back up and walks again. Crawling is very limited these days.

With all of this walking comes more falling. She is much more confident in her walking abilities but is not quite a pro at it. She is, however, a champ when it comes to falling. She hardly cries and will just make a frustrated face and get right back up to have a go at it again. My child is persistent and I love that about her! (Yes I know, that will challenge me later on as her parent but that’s okay.)

Sadie Walking

Today, my sweet girl was walking and slipped on a book she had been looking at earlier. This of course caused her to fall. Normally this would not be a problem except that in front of her was a window sill. My baby girl fell and hit her face on the window sill and there were tons of tears. My heart broke for her. I could see the pain she was in and there was nothing I could do but snuggle her in close and talk to her in a calming way telling her that I was there for her. She snuggled her little head into my chest and just let me hold and rock her and rub her back.

When she calmed down all the way, she lifted her head to smile at me and she had a slightly swollen lip and some blood. Oh. My. Goodness. My mama heart broke even more! This is the first time she has fallen and I’ve seen that kind of result from it.

Watching your child fall or get hurt is so hard. You feel so helpless. The only thing you can do is hold them tight and tell them you love them and that everything will be okay. But you know what…that’s enough. That’s what they need in those moments.

Falling is part of life. We all have done it or are maybe in the midst of it right now. In those times we all need someone to hold us, tell us they love us and that everything is going to be alright. You guys, we can all have that! God is our Father, our parent. He hates to see us fall and get hurt. It breaks His heart. BUT He is there for us to hold us tight, tell us how much He loves us and that everything is going to be okay.

In your times of pain, look to Him. He never leaves us. NEVER. He is right there waiting for you to come to Him so that He can love on you. What an amazing TRUTH that is!! We are not alone. He is there ready to embrace us. He loves us even when we forget He is there or when we push Him away.

As a parent now myself, I am learning even more about my Heavenly Father and the love that He has for me. What a great love that is! My love for my Sadie girl (and believe me, that’s a TON!!!) in no way compares to the love God has for me and for you. Now that is something to find joy in!

Have a very blessed day my friends. I hope if you’re feeling down, discouraged or hurt that you turn to Him so that He can hug you, hold you, tell you He loves you and that everything will be okay.

kylie

Getting Started

Hey everyone! I’m so excited to get started with my very own blog. I’ve been reading blogs for the past year or so and have really enjoyed them. I find them to be incredibly encouraging and inspiring.

I have had the desire to start my own blog for the past couple of months but struggled with feeling like anyone would care what I had to say. I understand that this can be a hard journey and one you really need to work at but after months of prayer, I decided to go for it!

The name of my blog is Fellowship and Lattes. I chose this name for a couple of different reasons. Fellowship is such a crucial aspect of life. Whether you are gathering around a table to eat or play games, going out with friends or even simply reading a blog post from someone you’ve never met, fellowship matters! I wouldn’t be who I am or where I’m at in life if I didn’t have the friends and family that I have. I absolutely love the people that we live life with and they are so important to me!

The second part of the name is Lattes. If you know me, you know I love Starbucks!! Their Cinnamon Dolce Latte is my all time FAVORITE! My husband and I joke that he is my Cinnamon Dolce Latte. I’ll never have enough him!  I love to grab coffee and catch up with my friends, whether that is at one of our homes or at a coffee shop. I also love to grab a latte as I grocery shop and walk around Target.

 

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My love of lattes and fellowship with those around me helped me come up with the name for this blog. I want this to be a place where we can all grab a latte (or whatever your favorite drink may be) and sit down to have some fellowship with one another. Let’s live life together.

kylie