My Guest Post on My Long Distance Marriage

Hey everyone! I’m so excited to share with you that today that I am doing my very first guest post! I am sharing a little bit about my temporary long distance marriage over at Sobremesa Stories! My good friend Lauren does an amazing series called Womanly Wednesday and she asked me to write about the time when Brad got moved (for his job) to North Carolina. That was one of my most challenging seasons in life but also such an amazing season in my life as well. Go check out her blog and read my story! Also, make sure to check out her other amazing content! I love her heart and the things that she has to offer and I know you will too!

Womanly Wednesday

 

kylie

Real Talk: Learning to Love Yourself

I am someone who goes to the store to buy everything! You name it, I’m probably getting it from the store. Sometimes I will get the urge to attempt to make something on my own (curtains, tomato sauce, homemade food for Sadie (instead of store bought), a craft, my own garden, etc.) The enemy almost immediately casts doubt upon my heart about myself. He lies and tells me that I can’t do it. I’m not good enough. I should leave it to my friends who are really great at that kind of thing. These thoughts push me to compare myself to my friends and I start to envy their talents and wish that I was different, better.

Learning to Love Yourself

 

I’ve got news for you friends, COMPARING IS A TERRIBLE THING!!!!! This will make you miserable and start to resent those around you that you are comparing yourself too. God didn’t make us someone else. He made us exactly as He wanted and that is PERFECT!

Psalms 139:13-14 says, “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous-how well I know it.”

This is the verse that God brings back to my mind when I start to doubt myself. He created me, every part of me. I am His workmanship and I am MARVELOUS! He created each and every one of you. You are His workmanship and you are MARVELOUS! Oh the freedom we have to love ourselves when we can start to glimpse ourselves through the eyes of our loving Father.

So this year I have decided to start fighting against those lies. When I feel the urge to try something new, something different from my norm, I’m going for it! I’m going to hold onto that verse and that TRUTH and I am going to be exactly who God created me to be and no one else. I am going to talk with and get help from my wonderful friends who do excel in certain areas that I want to try out. God created them exactly as they are with the talents they have and I plan on picking their brains and getting some help as I continue to grow myself.

My first step in growing myself this year was starting this blog. You can read about my insecurities about that in this post. I am so glad I have started this and I find so much joy in being able to express myself in this way.

Another thing I have recently attempted was making my own mini pancakes for Sadie’s breakfast! It may not sound like much to you but it was a big step for me. I take the easy way out (which sometimes is not a bad thing and I in no way am judging anyone else who does this-I will again I’m sure of it!) and just buy her stuff from the store instead of venturing out and trying things myself. For me, this can be a bad thing. I choose to do this because I don’t want to challenge myself or I have negative thoughts about myself and I don’t push past them.

So the other week I laid Sadie down for her nap and decided I was going to do it. I was going to make her my OWN miniature pancakes. And I must admit, I think I rocked it! Haha I was very happy with the results and I definitely plan on doing that again and continuing to try different things when it comes to her food.

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My next “big” item that I want to challenge myself in this year is gardening. I want to grow green bell peppers, red bell peppers, zucchini and squash. These are the vegetables we eat the most often so that is what I want to attempt and challenge myself too. I can’t wait for the weather to warm up so I can get started on that! If you have any advice on how to start a garden or what not to do, I’d love to hear it!

What lies is the enemy telling you? What doubts is he casting upon you that make you believe you aren’t good enough to do something? I challenge you to stomp on those lies and hold fast to God’s truth and Psalms 139:13-14. I challenge you to find a lie you’ve been believing and prove to yourself that you are good enough! What adventure will you be taking? Will it be a garden, a new blog, a half marathon, a new job? There are so many things out there for us so let’s all start believing we can do this! Let’s go for it!

 

kylie

1 Year Old Nap Schedule

Disclaimer:  This post is simply my opinion and what worked for

my family/our first (and so far only) child. Every child is different

and this may not be the exact answer you are needing/looking for.

Nap Schedule

Sadie has been a pretty great sleeper since the day she was born. We have been extremely blessed in that area. With that being said, I pretty much just let her sleep whenever she wanted or in the car on our way to somewhere else. She handled it all really well until one day, she didn’t. She was about 3 ½ months old and was starting to notice things around her. She wanted to be apart of things and hated to miss out! She would do fine in the mornings and then lose it by the end of the day. I knew something was up but I just couldn’t figure out what.

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At her 4 month checkup I asked our doctor what to do. My sweet baby who was always happy (yes, I’m that lucky parent but please don’t stop reading here because of that) had turned super fussy! What was going on?!? She suggested that I start Sadie on a schedule and stop just letting her do whatever, whenever.

Those first couple of weeks were absolutely MISERABLE! I went nowhere. I missed people. I started to resent my husband because he got to leave and go to work. He got to get out of the house and do something while I sat at home and read the books Baby Wise and Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. (I would highly recommend both of these books. I mostly used Baby Wise but the other one was super helpful as well.) I watched Sadie to learn her sleep cues. I journaled exactly what times she was waking up, eating and going to sleep. I tracked EVERYTHING! And then one day (about 2 weeks in), we had a schedule. I could start getting out of the house. It was a glorious day and totally worth my misery in the weeks prior.

With all of that being said, I would HIGHLY recommend a sleep schedule. The earlier, the better in my opinion.

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Sadie will be turning one years old this Saturday. Last week she decided that she was going to start taking just one nap a day. I know this is common around this age but I just really thought that she would be one of the children who don’t start this until 18 months. She is a kid who LOVES her sleep! She would wake up at 8:00 and be ready to go down for a nap by 9:30. So this transition of moving from two naps to one is pretty bittersweet for me. On one hand, I’m excited to have my mornings open. I no longer have to rush around to get her back home to nap. When I’m out, I know that we are good to go until her one and only afternoon nap. On the other hand, I really value the alone time I get during both of those naps-especially if I’m home for the day and not out and about. Oh well…as a parent, you do what is best for your kid. With that being said, here is what her schedule looked like at 2 naps a day and what we are transitioning to currently.

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The Zipadeezip was a LIFESAVER when transitioning out of a swaddle! You should definitely check them out! This is what she is wearing in the picture!

2 Nap Schedule:

8:00am           Wake Up

8:30am           Breakfast + 4 oz of formula

9:00am           Play Time

10:00-10:30am    Morning Nap

12:00pm          Wake Up and eat lunch + 3 oz of formula

12:30pm           Play Time/Errands

2:00pm           Afternoon Nap

3:30pm           Wake Up

4:00pm           3-4 oz of formula/snack

5:30pm           Dinner

6:30pm           Start bedtime routine

7:00-7:30 pm     Bedtime

 

1 Nap Schedule (at least what it currently semi-looks like):

8:00am          Wake Up

8:30am          Breakfast + Milk (starting to transition out of formula this week)

9:00am          Play Time/Errands/Out and about for the day

11:30am          Lunch

12:00pm         Nap Time

2:30pm          Wake Up

3:00pm          Snack

5:30pm          Dinner

6:30pm          Start Bedtime Routine

7:00pm          Bedtime

I’m sure she will continue to change things up on me but I will embrace the adventure she takes me on. I feel incredibly blessed to be this little girl’s mama and I would do anything for her. I want what is best for her and so I will sacrifice my wants to do what she needs. I sure hope this helps one of you mamas or soon to be mamas. I know I was always looking for what others were doing and never could seem to find the advice out there.

**Just today I decided to lay her down at 10:45 and hopefully get 2 naps in to fit in the schedule I had planned for us. She had other plans and slept till 1:30 and that was her one and only nap for the day. So we are obviously still working on what this new schedule will be! 🙂 Like I said above, I’m embracing the adventure she is taking me on and I am learning what works best for my kiddo!

 

kylie

Real Talk: Insecurities About Blogging

Real Talk: Insecurities About Blogging

Last week I went to write my first post for this and I’m not going to lie, it was hard. I had a really hard time focusing on one topic. I had a lot of ideas in mind and was struggling with several different things. I wanted to be open and honest with you all. In the midst of trying to write these posts, the enemy used my insecurities and started to overwhelm me. Here are some of the lies that I believed in that moment and then the TRUTHS that were spoken back into my life.

Insecurities that I struggle with when it comes to blogging (AKA: The Lies)

  • I feel insecure in my writing abilities. Sometimes I wonder why anyone would even care to read what I have to say. What do I have to offer that people would even care about? I don’t craft (very often). I am not an overly organized person (I’m organized in a way that works for us but not that I would necessarily share with others).
  • I feel insecure in myself. I will hit the slightest road bump and struggle to write something and so I’ll immediately think that I can’t do this and that I will fail.
  • I feel insecure when I compare myself to other people and their blogs. I read their stuff and am amazed. I love their writing styles, their content and the way they connect with me and I don’t even know all of them personally! I have a close friend who blogs and does an AMAZING job. Consequently, when my insecurities rise-I compare myself to her and think I have no business trying to start my own blog. I should just leave it to people like her-those with talent. They are good at this and I’m just mediocre. I should just leave it to them and not waste anyone’s time.
  • I feel insecure in my creative abilities. This blog isn’t going to be a place where you can find how to do weekly crafts. I’m not super creative. Sometimes I feel like I just barely scrape by when it comes to making things or even turning my house into a beautiful place full of things that I love.
  • I feel insecure about what I do have to say. There are things that I want to read out there. I want to know that I’m not the only one that lost her temper with her 11 month old child. I want to know that I’m not the only one who was selfish. I want to share these things with you but at the same time, that makes me insecure in myself. What will you think of me? Will you judge me? Will you say mean things?

Lysa TerKeurst Quote

Reminders God Gave Me (AKA: The Truth)

I am His child. He chose me. He gave me this desire and passion for a reason. I am far from worthless. I am his masterpiece!

God will reach me and tell me the truth in any way he chooses. In struggling to get my mind off of these horrible thoughts I first cried out to God to help and then I called my husband. He immediately left work to come home (yes I know, he is pretty awesome!) Once he was on the road he called me and spoke truth into my life. He spoke God’s truth. I fully believe that God gave him all of the words to say because they were EXACTLY what I needed to hear in that moment.

God also used Facebook to reach me. Instead of going to my bible when I had stopped crying enough to see again (yes, it was that bad), I turned to Facebook to get my mind off things. The very first thing that was on my news feed was by Lysa TerKeurst. If you have never heard of her, you should definitely go check her out!

She wrote,

“Instead of walling in our weak places today, let’s allow the Spirit to reveal

the one positive step we can take right now. Let’s wash away our thoughts of

condemnation with the warmth of His grace. Receive His power. And

rename our weaknesses, our strong places.”

Then she quoted scripture. God’s word and His abounding truth.

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (NIV)

You guys this is EXACTLY what we all need to remember no matter what kind of day we are having. When you are feeling broken, unworthy, worthless, hopeless, shut down or anything else-remember this verse and this TRUTH.

When we are broken and weak-God is STRONG! Therefore, when we are weak we are strong. God takes charge when we break down those barriers that tell him we can do things ourselves. He will always take over for us and help us through those hard times. Thank goodness for a gracious God who loves me and wants to remind me of these truths at all times!

So with that being said, I will continue to blog. I will continue to be me. I will choose to believe the truths and choose to take delight when the enemy attacks and tries to bring me down because God will be my strength! I will not back down. You shouldn’t either! Take delight in the fact that the Lord is your strength!

kylie

 

Exciting Announcement

I am so excited to announce…. A new section to Fellowship & Lattes!

Real Talk

This section is going to be called Real Talk. Here I will talk about very real and raw feelings and things going on in my life. This is also a place where I would really like to start having guest posts as well. I want to create fellowship through those deep and, sometimes, hard conversations that you would have with a best friend over coffee.

In this section you will find posts on insecurities, fears, health, dreams, goals and so much more. Not all “Real Talk” will be about the hard things. You can share your goals and your dreams. I want you to get to know me but even more so than that, I want to get to know you! I want you to know that you are not alone in your feelings or in the things you are struggling with. I want you to find encouragement and God’s truth.

1 Peter 5:9 “Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.”

This verse is such a great reminder to me. I am never alone. God is right there with me AND I’m not the first, the only or even the last person that will go through whatever struggle or joy I’m currently going through. There is someone out there that has gone through it-they can help me if I know where to look. There is someone that will go through it after me-I can help them if I know who they are. I want this section to be a place where we can find those people that we might not otherwise ever find.

If there is a topic you’d like covered fill out the form below. In the comment section let me know if you’d like to do a guest post or if you are needing for me to write a specific post. If I have not personally gone through whatever area you are needing encouragement in, I will do my very best to find someone who would be willing to do a guest post. I’d love to hear from you!

kylie

 

 

 

7+ Uses For Google Drive

Are you looking for ways to declutter some of your space? Do you need a place to keep everything important to you but don’t know where that could be? Would you like to be able to access all of your important information from just about anywhere? Check out why I love Google Drive and how I use it!

7+ Uses for Google Drive

Reasons Why I Love My Google Drive:

-I can access it from anywhere! As long as I am logged into my own personal Google account, I can access my drive on any type of device. From our tablet, to my phone, to our laptop and our desktop. I can access it from my mom’s ipad/computer when I’m at her house even. Seriously, anywhere! This is so great!

-I can share whatever I’ve created with anyone else who has a Google account. This was incredibly helpful when I taught 4th grade. I would create things and share them with my students and vice versa. Also, my teammates and I would create documents and share them with each other. It is also great for my family because I can share things with Brad and have him look it over from wherever he may be, even if he is at work. For a while he lived in NC while I lived in MO. Google became my best friend in keeping in contact with him. (Google Hangouts) Best. Thing. Ever.

-There are so many things that you can do! You can create spreadsheets (similar to Excel), presentations (similar to Powerpoint), and documents (similar to Word). The one I personally use most frequently for my house and own personal use is Google Docs.

 

How I Use My Google Drive:

-Recipe Book

-Address Book

-Blogging

-Our Church-the Grove

-Weekly Meal Plans

-Sadie Stuff

-Our Home Stuff

Recipe Book

The other day I opened the cabinet that holds my cookbooks and my binder full of papers and index cards with recipes. Stuff started to fall out at me because it was such a hot mess! That was when I decided it was time to clean things up a bit. I of course kept my cook books and love using recipes out of them, but I also finds tons of recipes that I love on Pinterest, my mom and other places. So I decided to clean things up a bit. I created a folder called Recipe Book on my Google Drive and began to type up all of those paper recipes. In this folder I have created more folders that allow me to organize my recipes into categories. I have appetizers, main dishes, soups, desserts, etc. It is so easy to find any recipe I want now and my cabinet looks so nice and neat!

Address Book

I feel like people are always moving and I can never seem to find my address book when I actually need it. So I decided to create a Google Doc that held all of the address’ that I will need. I can easily change an address out if someone moves. I can easily add people without any problems and I can access this from anywhere! Perfect!

Blogging

I try to create blog posts before I actually post them. This helps me stay organized and then I’m not rushing around trying to write a post half heartedly. So I have a folder called Blogging. In this folder I have created categories that I would like to add to my blog one day. In those categories, I have created Docs that have the posts that I would like to publish. This has been so helpful in setting me up for success with my blog!

Our Church-the Grove

We are part of a church plant called the Grove. This has been an amazing process that I see God continually working through. I’ll write about all of that at some point! Well, I’m the director of our nursery there and it’s called the Playhouse. Anything that I create goes into that folder. Creating it on my Google Drive allows me to share it with the other lead teachers for the Playhouse. They can make changes as they see fit or make comments off to the side that we can all see. We can also access this from our phones as we need to while we are at church. Often, I pull it up to look at the schedule to let volunteers know when they are working next.

Weekly Meal Plans

Every Sunday night, I try to sit down and create a list of our dinners for the week. This helps us not eat out as much and keeps me accountable to our family and our budget. On the page I have a table that lays out the days of the week and what we will be having for dinner every night that week. Underneath the table, I copy and paste from my Recipe Book folder the recipes that I will need. This makes everything SO EASY when it comes to dinner. I stay on track and we don’t go out to eat nearly as often as we did before!

Sadie Stuff/Our Home Stuff

These folders just hold random documents that I create for myself or our home. I have recently decided that I want to be more productive with my time so I have created a House Upkeep Schedule. This is located in my Home folder. I also keep our Address Book document in this folder.

In Sadie’s folder I created a document that had the addresses for everyone we are going to invite to her 1st birthday. This helped me so much when it came to addressing the envelopes this morning. It made it quick and easy! Another item I have in her folder is a bunch of pictures from my baby shower. My friend took the pictures and shared them with me via Google Drive. Genious! I am sure there will be so many more things to add to this folder as she continues to grow.

 

Google Drive is a wonderful thing once you figure out how to use it. I was definitely hesitant towards it at the beginning but have really come to love it and everything that it has to offer. If you are needing help with setting anything up or have questions on how to use it, I would love to help you out (if I can)!! 🙂

What are some ways that you use it? Is there something that I am missing out on? I would love for you to share what ways you find Google Drive most helpful! I’m always looking to learn something new.
kylie