Emery’s Helmet Journey-Part 1

Wednesday, March 29th, Emery got her helmet and our journey with it officially began. This process has been hard on me at times but I KNOW that this is what is best for our girl and as her parents, we will always do what’s best! So I wanted to share our story in hopes that it might reach someone else that might need it. Someone whose child might need a helmet and they are struggling with that. Or even for people who, like me, were just uneducated on baby helmets. Now, I’m not saying that I know everything and there are definitely more reasons out there for needing helmets. I’m just here to share our story, nothing more and nothing less. So I’ll start at the beginning…

Leading up to finding out that Emery needed a helmet:

Around 2 months old Brad and I noticed that Emery was mostly only looking one direction and when lifting her head up, it would only tilt one way. We were both concerned but didn’t bring anything up to a doctor just yet. We simply started softly turning her head the direction she wouldn’t turn it on her own and we would place toys on the side she didn’t like to look. After just a couple of days of doing these things, she improved a ton and to be honest it hasn’t been an issue since! Now that I’m on this side of things and have done some more research I have learned that the issue I just described is known as torticollis. This basically just means that her neck muscles were really tight and it was causing her to only look one way. So the stretching we did really helped! To help give you a visual, imagine when you wake up and realize you slept on your neck wrong. It’s hard to turn it one direction because your muscles are so tight. That’s what was happening with her.

I believe that she had this longer than I realized which resulted in her flat spot on the back right side of her head. She favored that side of her head which meant that she laid on it more than the other side. Also, Emery is such a happy and content baby who loves her personal space and is a pretty great sleeper. These things caused her to be on her back which just added pressure to the spot that she favored.

Brad will tell you he noticed her flat head around 2 months old. If I’m being honest, I will tell you the same thing. But I will also tell you that I was in denial about how flat her head actually was. I just didn’t want to think that it was flat, so I just ignored it. Well around her 4 month well check visit I noticed a spot in the back of her head that seemed a little indented. I mentioned it to her pediatrician and she said she wasn’t overly concerned but wanted to refer us to a plastic surgeon at Children’s Mercy Hospital just to be on the safe side. They are the doctors that deal with head shape and they would be able to tell us if this was something to be concerned about. This instantly made me anxious but CMH got us in quickly and I was hopeful!

The appointment that told us she would need the helmet:

Seeing the plastic surgeon went quickly. He came in and asked us what was up and I told him that I was concerned about the indentation in her head. He looked at me and said that was just a soft spot and nothing to worry about. The only reason we could see it though was cause her head was so flat and that she’d need a helmet. He said he would send in the Orthotist and she’d talk to us about the helmet and get Emery fitted for it. I was in shock as they moved us to another room. I just wasn’t prepared for this news.

Shannon, the Orthotist, came in to talk with us. She was SO kind!! She explained what a helmet was and how it helps. She had one to show us so that we could feel it and look it over. Then she explained that she was going to take some measurements to see how Emery’s head was shaped and if she’d need a helmet. I immediately became hopeful that her measurements wouldn’t be severe and we could opt out of doing the helmet. That was definitely not the case as 2 out of 3 of the measurements they take were severe.

The first measurement they took was from her ear to her eye. They should be the same distance on both sides. Her right side was slightly smaller than her left side but that measurement was just mild. The second measurement was from side to side vs front to back. The measurement from front to back should be longer than the side to side measurement. Her head measured longer from side to side than front to back, so the opposite of what it needs to be. The third measurement was the diagonals of her head. So front right to back left vs. front left to back right. These measurements should be as close to the same as possible and her measurement was 12mm apart.

Shannon left the office to take care of some insurance stuff and I lost it. I just knew that this was all my fault! I was the worst mom. I didn’t hold my baby enough and it caused her head to become severely flat. I was devastated and just started sobbing to Brad telling him what an awful mom I was.

Well I’m pretty sure Shannon saw me about to lose it before she left the office cause next thing we know the plastic surgeon had come back into the room. He apologized for the shock of all of this and talked me down. I told him that this was all my fault and he quickly and confidently reassured me that it was most definitely not my fault. Now I’ll be honest, that felt so great to hear but took a long time to actually sink in. I think as moms we’re all doomed to feel like it’s our fault if anything is wrong with our children. He assured me that this was purely cosmetic and if we didn’t want to get the helmet we most definitely didn’t have to! That was so great to hear but I already knew what we needed to do. It wasn’t fair to not get her the helmet which was in her best interest just because of my own insecurities and what people would say and think.

So we left the office that day knowing that no matter what insurance said about covering it, we were going to get Emery the helmet and do what was best for her long term. We had things that we needed to do to see if they helped at all–switching the side we changed her diaper and clothes on, switching her in her bed so she’d look to her left instead of her right and we switched her and Sadie in the car. All of these changes made her look to her left more than to her right since that was the side she favored and was flatter. We also had an appointment set up 2 weeks from then to measure her head again and scan it to get the helmet ready. We would also find out if insurance was going to cover the cost of the helmet. We were hopeful they would since her measurements were severe. So Brad went back to work and I headed home to start processing everything.

Details on her next appointment/scan and week 1 to come…

 

On the Rough Days-Let’s Rise Above Our Emotions

Yesterday was a rough day. Neither of my girls were acting like themselves. Sadie woke up from her nap at 2:00 and that’s when it all started.

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Emery was wanting to eat every 1 1/2 -2 hrs and hardly sleeping but crying…or screaming…A LOT!

**She’s not normally like this at all! She’s a pretty happy baby with minimal crying. And when she does cry I can normally get her calmed down fairly quickly. Not today!

Sadie was whiny, and crying, and into EVERYTHING she wasn’t supposed to be.

**Poor thing had a very runny nose and I think her teeth were bothering her.

Brad was in training for the day and Tuesday trainings are the longest and he doesn’t get home until after the girls’ bedtime.

I yelled at Sadie, which I hate doing. I was frustrated with Emery because I didn’t know why she was crying or how to make it stop. I felt like I was going to lose my mind.

In the past, I would have let this completely melt me down and I would have started making bad decision after bad decision for myself. But instead, I packed up the girls and headed out. All I knew when we left was that we were going to get out of the house!! I think we all needed a break from it.

We ended up driving around and looking at some Christmas lights and then at Sonic. I got Sadie dinner there and myself a Diet Cherry Limeade. I was so tempted to get some ice cream but I have decided last week when I started back on the 21 Day Fix that I was only going to get one “treat” a week and I knew I didn’t want it on Tuesday. So I just stuck with a drink that still felt special. Then we headed to my grandma’s for a bit. It was nice to not be the only one in charge of them for a little while. My grandma rocked Emery when she started to fuss and my grandpa played with Sadie. I even got to run a quick errand while they watched the girls!

I’m not gonna lie…the rest of my evening didn’t get better when I got home. It was rough even after I put them down for bed for awhile. But what made the day still a good and successful day to me was the fact that I made good choices for myself all day. Instead of a glass of wine as soon as they were down for bed, I had 25 ounces of water first.

I use to use my emotions as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted. I’m sure there will still be times when I do. But I am a work in progress and I will celebrate my small successes and victories. And next time my day turns into mass chaos and I’m tempted to make bad decisions, I can look back and remember that I’ve risen above once before and I can do it again.

So can you dear friend! If you made a choice that isn’t the best for you, don’t let that defeat you. Recognize it and refuse to let the rest of your actions be based off that one decision. Rise above your emotions and refuse to let them control you and your eating choices. It’s pretty empowering when you stay on track with your goals and don’t cave. Find someone to help keep you accountable to what you really desire for yourself. I promise it will help 🙂

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Have a great day friends and rise above! 🙂

kylie

 

 

A Letter to My Firstborn Child

My dear sweet Sadie girl,

Our world is going to change very soon. In about a week you are going to get a little sister! I know that you are too little to understand what this even means but I promise, it’s going to be such a good thing. There are going to be times though that it may not seem that way to you. So I’m going to apologize for a few things in advance.

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I’m sorry that we won’t have as much one on one time anymore. I have tried to do extra special things with you this past month so that you know how much I love you. I will also miss this time so incredibly much.

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I’m sorry that there will be times when you want your mommy, and I just can’t come at that time because your sister may need me more in that moment. You see big girl-You are older and independent. You can are able to walk across the room to get things you want. Your sister-she depends on mommy completely! She can’t do anything by herself. So there will be times that I have to help her before I can come help you.

I’m sorry that there will be a time that we probably won’t be leaving the house much. Mommy is pretty scared of how to take two kiddos out somewhere so it will take me awhile to get there.

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With as much as I’m going to miss our time together, sweet girl, I also can’t wait for your little sister to be here.

Sadie Grace–you are going to be the BEST big sister ever! I just know you are. You are kind. You are loving (so much love!!!) You are the best helper a mommy could ever ask for. You are sweet. You are strong. You are independent. You listen well. I know that you will teach her to be all of these things as well.

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I’m excited to figure this new baby-mommy versus 2-family of 4 (+Ella) dynamic together. I’m excited to find ways to make all of our girl time (including your sister) special. I’m excited to find extra special ways to spend one-on-one time with you.

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I pray that you will always know how loved you are my sweet girl. You made your daddy and I parents for the very first time. You will hold a special place in my heart always. You taught me patience I didn’t even know existed. You taught my what unconditional love really is. You brought me closer to God and I pray that I can do the same for you. You taught me how to be a mama and for that I will always be grateful.

I love you Sadie Grace. So much.

Love, your mommy

Our Family Update: What’s Been Going On Lately!

Hey everyone! It’s been awhile since I’ve written so I have a lot to update you on! Since there is so much I’m pretty much gonna skip this intro step and jump right on in to tell you about what’s been going on lately!

Pregnancy:

I am officially 34 weeks pregnant! I can’t believe how fast this pregnancy has gone. Overall I am doing really well but to be honest, my body is really starting to HURT!!! The ligaments in my lower stomach and upper legs just ache all day long and by the end of the day it’s hard to move.  Sleeping at night is the worst. Those ligaments get stiff as I sleep and just ache so bad whenever I go to rollover in the middle of the night. Other than that though, this pregnancy is going great!

I have noticed a huge change in my weight gain from my last pregnancy with Sadie to this pregnancy with Emery. I can really tell that my eating and working out have made a difference and that is so awesome to see!! Here is a picture of 2 of my maternity pictures–the left is of me at 33 weeks pregnant with Sadie and the right is me pregnant at 34 weeks with Emery. I know that there are several differences in the pictures but to me the most obvious one is my weight gain with Sadie versus Emery. Look at my face!!! I’m so proud of myself for making my health a bigger priority this time around! photogrid_1474256723003

 

Maternity Pictures:

My friend Jess is an amazing photographer and she took my maternity pictures last night!! She’s already given 2 sneak peaks and they are AMAZING!!!! She is truly incredible and I can’t wait to see more! She has an incredible eye for lighting. You can check out her awesome work at Jessieannphotography.com 

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Photo Credit: Jessie Ann Photography http://www.jessieannphotography.com/

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Photo Credit: Jessie Ann Photography http://www.jessieannphotography.com/

Church Update:

The church plant that we are a part of is going great! As a matter of fact, I was just working on putting together an agenda for our Playhouse staff  (this is what the nursery is called at The Grove Church) this morning for our upcoming meeting.

We are going to take part in Gladfest on October 1st. Gladfest is a big festival that happens every fall in Gladstone. Several of  our members got together on Saturday over the weekend and started the construction of our float that will be in the parade! They did an awesome job and I can’t wait to see how it all turns out.

This coming Thursday we are also getting together to start painting the construction that was built on Saturday. It’s going to look awesome!!

At Gladfest, we will also have a booth up selling our #lovegladstone t-shirts. All proceeds will be going back into our fund for our #lovegladstone projects. These are projects that we do around Gladstone to help out our community. If you want to check this out more head on over to our website!

Our Weekend:

Over the weekend Brad and I were busy with lots of projects.

Chair for Emery’s Room–My parents had an old recliner that they rocked my brother and I in when we were just babies. They gave the chair to me and Brad and I have decided to reupholster it ourselves. Sometimes I ask myself, “What the heck have we gotten ourselves into????” but other times I’m so proud of the work that we have already accomplished. This is an extremely long project but it’s coming along and I can’t wait to show off the finished project.

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Here is the original chair. Sorry it’s so pixalated…the only before picture I could find was a picture on my phone that I took from the computer…definitely NOT the best quality!!

Swingset for Sadie (and eventually Emery)–Brad and I are really wanting to make our backyard a place where we love to hangout and spend time together as a family and with friends. One step into making this happen is by putting up our new swingset!! Brad got a ton of it done over the weekend but we have a slightly unlevel backyard so he needs to stop work on the swingset to level it out before moving on to the next step. I can’t wait to have it all up so that Sadie can start playing on it!! She is going to LOVE it!!!

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Grove Church Float–On Saturday Brad went and helped start building the float for the Gladfest parade that I mentioned above. I can’t wait to see the final product!!

Girls’ Names–I scrap-booked some wooden letters for each of our girls. I got an awesome new book of scrapbook pages at Hobby Lobby and then pulled out different sheets that went with each girl’s room color scheme. Then I traced the letters on the pages and modge podged the paper onto the letters. We got their names above each of their beds over the weekend and I am in love!

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We also got their names on their doors! This weekend was just packed FULL of things and I couldn’t be happier to start checking items off of our list.

 

Today I am focusing on getting caught back up with our home, my blog and my business. I have quite a few items checked off my to do list and still quite a bit left as well! I’m definitely excited to have the energy to keep on going and to get our house back in shape and ready for our sweet Emery to arrive!

 

Have a great Monday everyone!

kylie

Fun Friday: Play-dough and Drawing

Hey everyone! Today Sadie and I were supposed to go swimming with a friend. Well there were high chances of storms and the radar showed it was coming straight our way. So we decided to “rain check” (pun intended) and she went to work in her classroom instead. Well…as you could probably guess, it never did end up raining. Shocking right?!?! Well Sadie and I still wanted to have some fun so we (by we I really mean me) decided to start making Fridays-FUN FRIDAYS!!

FUN FRIDAYOh the adventures we'll go on together...

This heat is to unbearable to be out in but my child is OVER being inside. So today I decided to break out some of my old teaching ways and I got creative. I decided that we should make some play-dough because I have none here at the house for her to play with. The recipe I found on Pinterest ended up not working out so great and STUCK EVERYWHERE!!!!

So I decided to modify the recipe a little bit. I figured that when you are baking and things start to stick you use FLOUR….so that was my solution! And you know what….IT WORKED! Yay! 🙂

Play-dough Recipe

Seriously…this was the best! She loved it and it entertained her for almost 45 minutes!!! That is HUGE for my child who hates to sit still. (But let’s be honest…what 17 month old does like to sit still??) She loved getting to watch me mix the ingredients together and we talked about the different things that I was putting into the recipe. After it was made we created snakes and I spelled out her name and Mama. She just thought that was the best. Although, she wasn’t a fan of me playing with “her” play-dough at times. lol

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Sadie also spent some time coloring. She just used my notebook and a plain black pen. I really need to find my crayons downstairs and some paper. She loves this and I know it’s so good for her. I’ve just been lazy and have slacked on searching for the right materials to make it even more fun for her.

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This afternoon if it isn’t raining still and Brad isn’t exhausted from work, we may and try to hit up the pool. Now that is what I call a Fun Friday 🙂

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What different activities do your kids love to do? I am always looking for new and simple ideas to try out with her!! Please comment below!

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Real Talk: Today was a Hard Day, Until…

I’m not gonna lie, today did not have the best start to it for my Sadie girl and I. She just really wasn’t in the mood to listen to ANYTHING  I had to say. If I told her no, she would stop for a second and then do it all over again. ALL. MORNING. LONG. Today started as a very hard day.

Seriously….I was OVER IT!!!!

Thankfully God gave me the idea to just get out of the house. Sometimes this comes easier to me than other times. Some days, if I can’t get anyone to go with me or meet me somewhere, I just won’t go. Today I never once even felt like that was an option. As soon as the idea to get out of the house came to my mind, I knew it was God prompting me.

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So I went ahead and sent out a text to some friends to see if they would like to join Sadie and I at the library but they were busy doing other things. Today, I refused to let that stop me. I got us dressed and off we went. This was the BEST decision for us. She had a wonderful time watching the other kids play and doing some playing of her own. Observing others is really probably her favorite part though. After awhile the other kids started to leave but we chose to stay. Our library has an outdoor fenced in patio and she was showing some interest in going outside. We haven’t been doing a lot of that lately around here because it is HOT AND HUMID!!! But…today the patio looked mostly shaded and there was a breeze so I decided, why not?!

Outside we went. I got to sit in an Adirondack chair while she wandered the patio and played with chalk. We were the only ones out there so I didn’t have to constantly get up to make sure she was playing nice and sharing. I just got to sit and enjoy watching her play and use her brain as she came up with new things to do with just chalk and some Adirondack chairs.

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I truly do love getting to just watch her play. Her imagination and thoughts are already so great and I know they will continue to get better and better.

I was thankful for this time because it gave me a chance to just watch her without any distractions that I normally have at home. I got to appreciate her independence without the lack of patience that I feel like I’ve had lately. My frustrations were gone from this morning and I could just sit back and ENJOY my little girl.

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It just became even more clear to me that this was a gift from God. An idea that led me to a better day. We finished off our morning with a quick trip to Target for some Starbucks (a HUGE thank you to my brother and sister-in-law for that awesome gift) and the dollar section where I got Sadie a light up ball for just a dollar (got to love cheap entertainment!).

We came home, both of us in a MUCH better mood, and ate some lunch and then Sadie went down for a nap. I hadn’t had my quiet time yet today so I knew I needed to use her nap time to really get that in for myself. Well, I just finished the study I was doing yesterday but God gave me the idea to start it over. I have a mom’s bible study that meets at my house once a week and we are doing this study. I decided I didn’t want to start something new while doing this but maybe I should go BACK through it and see what I learn this time around. So I opened up my journal and did Week 1 Day 1. I loved doing it through my journal because it allowed me the space to process some of my thoughts and write out prayers. This study is called Looking for Lovely by Annie F. Downs. I LOVE everything about this study. Seriously…it really challenges me.

Today I took the time to find peace in God again and look for the lovely things around me. I want my perspective to change. I want to stop just going through life with blinders on and just trying to reach the end and I want to start looking around me as I move forward. I want to notice the amazing things God is doing around me.

So here is my list of Lovely things today. My #lookingforlovely list:

-a library with toys and activities for Sadie

-the dollar section at Target

-places to go that cost little to no money but get Sadie and I out of the house

-Sadie laying her head on my chest on the way inside after our trip (she fell asleep on the way home)

-a date night with Brad tonight, just the two of us (long overdue!!!)

-a shaded place to play outside that didn’t feel so hot (thank you breeze!!)

-nap times that give me time for myself to rest and connect with my heavenly father

-friends and family I can turn to for prayers

-the idea to keep doing this study but through my journal instead of the workbook

 

Friends, look for the lovely around you today. Don’t let Satan steal your joy. Find the things that God is placing in front of you and around you and focus on those. This day doesn’t have to be one that you wish away. You still have a chance to turn it around and make it a great day!

kylie

2 Kids Under 2

For those of you that don’t know, my amazing husband and I are expecting another child in October. Actually, we are expecting ANOTHER precious baby girl. We are going to have 2 kids under 2!! Two LITTLE GIRLS under the age of two!! So crazy!

We have recently decided on a name, Emery. I love this name! I love having a name picked out for her already. I love calling her by name when I talk about her and pray for her. I love being able to talk about BOTH of my girls by their names, the ones that I KNOW God has chosen for them.

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We found out back in February that we were pregnant and I was both thrilled and terrified. More often than not now, my feelings of excitement overshadow my feelings of fear. But…those afraid feelings come back at times.

I am going to be a mom to a 20 month old and a newborn. WHAT?!?!?!? How on earth do people do this??

How can I love 2 little girls as much as they need me to?

How can I take care of both of them all day all by myself while Brad is at work?

How can I meet both of their needs when they happen at the same time?

What will happen to my relationship with my precious Sadie, my firstborn, the one who made me a mama?

What will my relationship with Emery look like? I can’t focus on her like I focused on Sadie as a newborn because I’ll have a toddler to keep up with this time around.

What will Brad and I’s relationship look like with two kiddos to take care?

How am I going to be able to keep up with my active Sadie girl after multiple sleepless nights with Emery?

What’s going to happen to me? To the time that I need by myself in order to be the best mama I can be?The one that God has called me to be?

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You guys, these fears are real, but God is showing me that its not okay to dwell on them. I have no idea what my future will look like, even tomorrow! But thank the Lord, HE DOES!!!! He has blessed me with another little angel because HE KNOWS that I can do it. He has equipped ME to do this very job.

No one in the entire world can do what I can do for these two little girls.

I know that there are rough and hard roads ahead. I also know that there are sweet and amazing and precious roads ahead. My God, the only God, is a great Father. He knows exactly what He has in store for me and my family. He has already mapped out the hard times that I’m going to have and HOW I’m going to grow stronger because of those times. (Jeremiah 29:11)

The Bible study I’m doing right now, Looking for Lovely by Annie F. Downs is already preparing my heart so much for what is coming. I know that God led me in this direction to help prepare me. He never promised that life would be easy. Only that He would never leave me to do it alone.

Without those hard days, my character wouldn’t develop, grow and strengthen in the way that it needs to. And so, I am choosing RIGHT NOW to REJOICE through those hard times. (Please remind me of this when I start to complain and whine). Those sleepless nights and exhausted days. I am going to look for the LOVELY right in front of me. The tiny little humans that God has given to ME. And I am going to love them for all that I’m worth!

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Photo Credit: Melissa McCullough Photography I can’t wait to do a Mommy and Me session with BOTH of my girls next year!

 

I would love to hear from any other mamas of two kiddos-no matter their ages or the age difference between them. I would love to hear any encouragement that you have or advice on how you got through those tough days. Scripture, encouraging words, stories, anything like that! Also, if you have a blog post that goes along with this, leave that in the comments. I’d love to read about how other mama’s are doing it!! Please comment below…you never know who else you could reach and encourage with your words other than just me.

kylie

 

50 Things to Tell My Daughter on Her First Birthday

I started writing a letter to my little girl a couple of weeks ago when she turned ONE years old. It was a little difficult to write and has taken me some time but I have finally finished it. Read below to find out the 50 things I hope to teach my sweet girl as she continues to grow up.

 

A Letter to My Little Girl on Her 1st Birthday

My Sweet Sadie Grace,

Where has the time gone? I feel like it was just yesterday that I walked into the doctor’s office and they told me that I was going to be delivering you that next day. You see, I was only 39 weeks at that appointment but my blood pressure was pretty high. They knew that you were looking great but they were a little concerned about me. So they decided they wanted to induce me to reduce any possible complications.

I remember asking the lady at the desk, “So I’m coming in tonight and not leaving until I have my baby?!” I called your daddy and it was go time! I went into work and wrapped things up there. Then I came home and we got our things and made sure our home was ready for when we brought you back. We went in to the hospital that night and they induced me the very next morning. Once that happened, you were ready to come out! It was a quick and easy delivery (well as easy as delivery could be)!

At 2:24 pm on Friday, February 20, 2015 you arrived into this world and your daddy and I were blown away by your presence. You are our little miracle and we couldn’t be more grateful to be your parents! You are an incredible gift from God and I don’t want you to ever forget that.

Here are some things that I hope I teach you and that I want you to remember for the rest of your life.

50 Things For Sadie

  1. God created you-every part of you and you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalms 139:13-14 is the verse to go to if you need to be reminded. It also states there that God’s works are wonderful and baby girl-you are one of God’s works!
  2. You are unique. No one in the entire world is like you!! Embrace that and love that. Be YOURSELF and don’t compare yourself to others. It will cheat you of the glorious gifts God gave you.
  3. You will not succeed at everything you do in life and that is OKAY and just the way it should be. If you never failed you wouldn’t be reminded of your need for Christ. We all need Christ and we all need the reminders to turn to him.
  4. Be the girl who is kind to everyone. Smile and say hello to those around you-even strangers. You don’t know what they are going through and they might need a little extra love.
  5. Love everyone around you. You don’t need to agree with their actions, but you are called to love them and to be kind.
  6. Love your body and treat it well. Exercise, eat foods that make your body strong and take care of yourself. Your body is God’s temple and we are called to take care of his temple.  1 Corinthians 6:19
  7. Have a treat every once in awhile. It’s good for the soul!
  8. Dream! Set goals and go after that dream. Sometimes setting small goals at first helps to get you on your feet and started. Starting small is never a bad thing!
  9. Stepping out of your comfort zone is hard but worth it. Try it, you’ll be surprised at the way God moves when you step out of your own way.
  10. You will NEVER do ANYTHING that will stop your Heavenly Father, your daddy or I from loving you. We will always be here for you no matter what!
  11. Read God’s word. It has the answers for everything you will ever face. If you can’t seem to find those answers, look harder into scripture. I promise it’s there.
  12. Serve others. Put them ahead of yourself. It’s completely worth it and what God has called us to do.
  13. You are stronger than you think you are.
  14. There will times in life where you feel completely helpless. Turn to God and let him carry you through those times. He won’t let you down.
  15. Be honest and loyal. Always tell the truth and stand by those around you.
  16. Be the friend you want to have.
  17. Money does not bring you happiness but God brings you joy. Fill yourself with Him instead of money.
  18. Avoid debt at all costs. It will rob you of a lot of things!
  19. Love is a CHOICE-not a feeling. Go read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 if you need a reminder of exactly what love is.
  20. Your daddy is an extremely hard working man who loves us so much!! He would do anything for our family and he loves Jesus with his whole heart. Find a man like your daddy to marry. You won’t regret that decision!
  21. Take time for yourself every once in awhile. It’s important to replenish yourself so you can fully invest in others.
  22. Understand your worth. If someone isn’t treating you like the daughter of God that you are-move on. They aren’t worth your time. Don’t ever let being “alone” push you into a relationship with someone like that.
  23. Take ownership of your actions. If you did something wrong, own it and apologize and make it right.
  24. Forgive everyone no matter what they have done. God has forgiven us and he calls us to do the same. Forgive even if the other person never says sorry.
  25. You can’t change those around you. You aren’t responsible for their actions or words but you ARE responsible for how YOU respond and act.
  26. Be proactive, not reactive.
  27. Take time to really listen to those around you. Don’t always be the person that has to have the last word.
  28. Pray. It changes things.
  29. Learn how to take an interest in others and don’t turn every conversation back to you. No one wants to be around someone who doesn’t take an interest in them and their life.
  30. Show God’s love through how you treat those around you.
  31. It’s okay to cry.
  32. Try to smile daily. There is something in every day that you can be thankful for. Some days you may need to look harder than others, but I promise it’s there!
  33. Play outside.
  34. Find a topic you enjoy reading and then READ.
  35. Find an activity or a hobby that you really love and go after it with your whole heart. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.
  36. Work hard at everything you do. Remember that you are working for God and to bring him glory. Colossians 3:23
  37. Patience will get you far in life. Learn that from your daddy-not me!
  38. Let the little things go. Don’t hold onto grudges. They aren’t worth it.
  39. Being strong-willed (aka stubborn) can be a good thing, but it can also be a bad thing. Learn the difference and back down when necessary.
  40. Learn how to laugh at yourself. It will make life more enjoyable.
  41. Take time to sit in God’s presence daily. Read his word, talk with Him and listen for Him.
  42. Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to get angry. James 1:19
  43. Surround yourself with friends who will push you towards God, not away from him. Be the light to those who are far from Him, but don’t let them bring you down to the darkness.
  44. Be polite and have manners.
  45. Know what you believe and why. Then, stand up for that at all times.
  46. Love yourself-God doesn’t make mistakes. There is nothing wrong with who you are. Embrace your differences and learn to love yourself in the way that God loves you.
  47. Your attitude affects those around you. If you think positively, more than likely, you’ll turn their thoughts into positive ones as well.
  48. There are times when life isn’t fair or there is something that you don’t want to do. That’s just how life goes. You don’t always get what you want. Sometimes, you need to do things because it makes those around you happy. Life is not all about you.
  49. Be silly and don’t take life too seriously.
  50. I will always want to talk with you and I will never stop loving you!

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Happy Birthday my sweet girl. I thank God daily for blessing me with you and allowing ME to be YOUR mama. I love you Sadie Grace, always!
Mama

7 Things to do During Nap Time

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7 Things To Do During Nap Time

Being a mom can be tiring! We can get so caught up in taking care of our families and homes that we tend to lose ourselves. This is something that I’ve definitely struggled with at times. When we get caught up in this but don’t take any time for ourselves, we tend to not be the best moms and wives we can be-the ones God has called us to be. So I’ve created a list of activities that I like to do during Sadie’s nap time. These are ways that I can invest in myself so that I’m refreshed and ready to love and invest in those around me.

I have found that nap time is the best time for me to invest in myself and get stuff done. I’m not a huge morning person so I only wake up about 30 minutes to an hour before my little one gets up. In the evenings, my husband is home and I want to spend time with him so I don’t get a lot of alone time (because I choose that) and I also don’t get a lot of other stuff done. So nap time presents itself as the perfect time of day for me to get stuff accomplished.

7 Things To Do During Nap Time

Take a bath.

Something that I really enjoy doing is taking a bath. That is my way to relax and decompress. I often will take a good book into the tub with me or sometimes I’ll move our little tv into the bathroom and I will watch Netflix. I normally do this at night time but have found that another perfect time to do this is during my little one’s nap time. By doing it at this time of the day, I’m not taking away time spent with my hubby but I’m still enjoying all the same effects!

Read a book.

I LOVE to read. My favorite type of books are fiction books. I love finding a good story line and getting lost in the book. One of my FAVORITE authors is Karen Kingsbury. You should definitely check her out! I also really enjoy books that challenge me and grow me in my faith and in myself. Nap time is the perfect time to get caught up in a good book without any distractions! It’s also a great thing that you can take into the bath with you. But sometimes, I just can’t seem to find a good book so….

Find a series on Netflix you like and watch it.

Netflix and I have a love/hate relationship. I can very easily get caught up in a TV show and then somehow end up losing my whole day! But, I love that Netflix has shows that start from season one. Nothing like being able to watch a show from the very beginning!

Take a short nap yourself.

It’s important to make sure that we are caught up on our sleep as well. Being a mom is extremely tiring some days! It’s okay to take a nap when your little ones are sleeping.

Find something you really enjoy and make time for that.

I have recently started to blog. Nap time is the perfect time for me to sit down at my kitchen table and blog. I turn on some soft music from Pandora and sit in the sunshine and let my creative juices flow. I love this time that I use for myself!

Workout.

I have found that working out brings me a lot more joy than I would have ever thought. It let’s me release endorphins and gets my blood pumping. I feel so accomplished after I’ve completed a workout. Doing this at nap time ensures that I can get it in without any distractions. My personal favorite is the 21 Day Fix workout videos. They are 30 minutes and I love them! I feel challenged but can also step it back if I’m just not feeling it that day but still want to get something in.

Do something on your TO DO list.

We all have this. A list of items that you need to get done. Sometimes I have a list for a specific day and other times I have a list of something I want to get done that week or even month. Nap time is the perfect opportunity for me to get something on it checked off.

 

I have found for myself that I feel the best when I do a variety of these things during nap time. There are definitely days where I get caught up in Netflix and that’s all I do…for days even. But, when I do a variety of activities during nap time I am the happiest. I feel accomplished and I feel like I have invested in myself. When I am feeling this way, I can be a better mom to Sadie. Every day I want to be the best for my little one and for my husband. I want to be able to give the best of me to them and take care of them and our home in the best way possible. I want to honor the job that God has given me. I want to bring Him glory through how I live my life.

 

I’d love to hear from you!! What are some ways that you invest in yourself? What are some of your favorite Netflix shows? What books would recommend that are easy to get caught up in? I am always looking for new TV shows and books to read. Plus I love to hear how others are being creative and investing in themselves!!

 

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