Be Present! 


Let’s just say I had a very humbling experience on my flight home!!! 

Top 4 Things I Learned from this ticket:1. Don’t ever get so into work and so focused on what’s next that you miss what’s going around you right now!! (Like missing your connecting flight!)

2. Be honest! Don’t worry what people think of you! I was afraid to tell the gate agent at LAX that I missed my flight! You see, I had asked earlier to change to a direct flight to Charlotte, but it would cost over $600 to change. When I missed my flight to Atlanta, they put me on the direct to Charlotte. So I went back to his gate. I was afraid the gate agent would think I did that on purpose! I went up crying to him and asked if he thought there was anyway I would make it on the flight. He told me that the gate had actually changed and he wasn’t in charge of that flight, but he looked it up and moved me up to stand by passenger #4.

3. Pray a lot…even with the little things. I wasn’t worthy of getting help with his situation. It was completely my fault!! I knew God could help me! He could put people in my path to allow me to make this flight! Circumstances could work out in my favor. I did all I could. Now, it was time to pray! And pray a lot. God can (and does!) perform little miracles! 4 standby passengers made it on the flight! I was number 4.

4. There is ALWAYS a reason! I met an amazing friend through Arbonne, who was actually on the direct flight to Charlotte. I ran up to her crying and telling her what happened. Told her I was afraid the guy wouldn’t believe me. She said to just be honest and tell him. Because I did that he helped me get higher on the stand by passenger list AND he told us the gate had changed. If I hadn’t missed my flight, she probably would have missed hers, the last flight to Charlotte for the night. She was sitting behind the screen and didn’t see it had changed! 

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I run to burn off the crazy!

I love running!! I started after I had Lucas! I needed to be able to work out and it not take me forever to get a good workout in…since now we had kiddos!! 🙂 Last year I ended up getting a stress fracture and couldn’t run. I thought I might go crazy!! It took me over 4 months to finally start running again. And it was a slow process of finally being back to where I was!  So the fact that I can run pain  free right now is amazing! It makes me soul happy! That’s what matters! Andy can tell when I haven’t gotten to run!! 🙂 So I know it does help!! Haha!! So yes…I made a list of why I love to run!

1. It keeps me sane.

2. Love being outside.

3. I can eat more food.

4. Vitamin D.

5. You will never meet nicer people than at a running event!

6. Great way to bond with friends.

7. You can do it anywhere!

8. Time to pray and talk to God!

9. Can squeeze a hard workout in 30 minutes.

10. Love listening to music or podcasts!

This weekend we had a date weekend and it was amazing!! We were hanging out getting free food and drinks and saw there was a 5K at the Greenville Zoo in SC! So of course my friend and I decided to do it!! We ran together last year in Beaufort, SC to honor her Mom! We weren’t planning on running, but she had been running a lot lately and I was back into it as well, so we were ready to go! And it was pretty weather!! And it was at 8:30!! 

Luckily, we found out before the event that it was hilly!! And being from Boone, you know it’s hilly if a Boonie thinks it is! We were in the zoo for a bit, but ran mostly around it. I didn’t mind! The weather was AMAZING!! The only downfall was the course was a little bit longer than a 5K!! So I thought we were almost done…when in reality, there was a bit farther to go! But it was awesome!! There were 405 participants!! I got 14th out of the women and 2nd in my age group! I was super excited! I got a really cool tumbler cup too!


So I’m probably different than a lot of people, but christian music totally helps me going!! I love the inspiration and it helps me when I’m doing well in a run (or in life) and when I’m struggling to finish a run (or in life). 

 I always loved 2 Timothy 4:7  I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith.

And

Hebrews 12:1 And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,

Then I read this verse and fell in love with it!

So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 1 Corinthians 9:26

This might be my new mantra! So when I’m running, I make sure there is a purpose!! Trying to make sure each step I take in life is the same!! That it has a purpose…and that it’s purpose is pleasing to Him!

Haiti update…

So it’s been awhile!! Oops! Life has been crazy!! Some good. Some hard!! I had an amazing…amazing time in Haiti in February!! I read Jen Hatmaker’s book Interrupted last year and prayed for God’s holy passion in my life! And wow…did he ever show me! Little did I know that God was opening doors for me to serve in Haiti. I’ve always wondered if God wanted me to be a missionary? I love traveling!! But He sometimes finds little ways to let us know what is…or isn’t His plan.


I’m thankful for my time in Haiti and so thankful to go back! My church has done a Lenten Challenge to support those who want to go on the October trip. The goal was $5000. The plan was any excess to go to the school that is being built in Haiti. Well, within 3 days we met the goal, and God is well on His way to moving in some AMAZING ways!! We are almost at $15,000!!! Yes!! $10,000 more!! I can’t really put into words how truly amazing it is to see people find a cause and run with open arms to help and be a part of it!

I loved being in Haiti. Language barrier was hard, but love is universal. Cuddling and hugging those sweet children in the orphanage was amazing. I thought, I wonder if God would call me to do this one day? I thought that while we were driving out to see some widows. We met one who had a grown child who was handicapped. They said she can’t work there and how hard life is for them. I immediately thought of Lucas and all that we can do for him here. He has therapy in and out of school. He is teachers who believe in him and don’t give up on him. He has teachers who try new things to help him be successful. He has a community that doesn’t let him give up. This is where our home is. This is where he can thrive and be who he needs to be and get what he needs. I realized right then that God is calling me to be a part of this amazing organization. To show others what we can do. But He’s also calling me to be a mom. To one amazing, determined little boy who has cerebral palsy. Who tries so so hard and cares so deeply about others feelings. And another little one who has a lot of love to give! Whether to his friends, or our dog! 🙂

Lucas and Jack keep us on our feet!! Lucas has therapy 4 days a week after school! He’s pretty exhausted and we have some interesting afternoons! Jack loves our puppy and gives her about 30 kisses a day…not kidding! Life is busy…sometimes hard, but we try to find the good!! So it’s been a bit, and things have changed! God is at work, and life is a little overwhelming at times. But thankful for the journey and where we are going!

Election Infection

I have been having a hard time with the election. I rewatched Andy Stanley’s video and he said this:

Your political views make perfect sense to you. Everybody’s political views, everybody’s political views make perfect sense to him or her. So here’s the lesson, Christians, look up here. When you don’t know how someone could do such a thing, when you don’t know how someone could believe such a thing, when you don’t know how somebody could support such a person, when you don’t know how somebody could support such a view or support such a bill, when you don’t know how in the world could they do such a thing, support such a thing, believe such a thing, it’s because there’s something you don’t know. I’ll say it again. When you run into, hear about, talk to someone who holds a view that you’re like, “How in the world could anybody believe such a thing? How could anybody support such a thing?” The problem is there’s something you don’t know.

A key question he says to ask is “what led you to that view?”

When you discover somebody’s story it’s very difficult to continue not liking the person. When you get context for a view, when you get the context for an opinion, when you get the context for somebody’s persuasion, you begin to understand. And when you begin to understand the temperature goes down in the room.

 So what led me to my view: Life. This is my story. You don’t have to read it, but it will help you see why I am the way I am.

My husband had a stoke at 31. We were denied social security two times and had to get a lawyer. But even that was a tricky path because of where we lived and the back log of people who were trying to get disability. For those reviewing your disability application, if you wrongfully give someone disability who shouldn’t get it, you have a strong possibility of losing your job. If you deny someone who should have gotten it, no big deal. We finally did receive disability after 2 years of waiting,but we weren’t working the system. My husband had a blood disorder no one knew about and had a stroke…at 31. Having to be on disability at a young age is hard. Most people are much older and not trying to start or have a family. So my husband hasn’t done anything wrong! But he is on disability and relies heavily on that and on his Medicare. So SSD and Medicare affect us right now. This was the hand we were dealt. I’m not complaining, but please know everyone on disability isn’t lazy and some people really do need it.

Then our son was born 10 weeks early which resulted in a diagnosis of cerebral palsy. Did I think I would have a child with a disability? No. But we do. My child does some quirky things. He holds his hands a little different. His muscle tone is not all there. His speech is different. So when I see the children with disabilities are not going to have some of the high quality education needs and services given to them, then I have to say what I feel. I love my child and just because he has a disability doesn’t mean he doesn’t deserve the same education and help he needs. There is also a way he can get Medicaid, which would help pay for therapies and give better coverage. But only a certain number of people can be on medicaid, so it can be years and years before he will get covered. Again, not complaining, but just because someone needs Medicaid doesn’t mean they aren’t trying.

I’m a public school teacher. I love my job. I teach 23 kids and try my hardest to get them to succeed in math, reading, writing, spelling, science and social studies. And try to help them be better people. To think about other people’s feelings. To help those in need. To be kind to others. I teach children who are highly gifted, who struggle and who are just where they need to be. I have children who do have parents who came here illegally. All my letters are translated in English and Spanish. (Google translate is my best friend) I get some of the best tamales I have ever tasted!!! And I’m so thankful that from my background growing up in New Mexico that I didn’t see and look for our differences.

A dear friend of mine chose to keep and parent her child as a single mom. I would do anything to help support her along the way. I’ve seen the miracle of life and how truly amazing it is. I love our local pregnancy center because of the support they give to women and children. There are always “what ifs” and I truly can’t imagine being in one of those situations. I think it’s important to support women while they are pregnant, but also support them when the baby is born and as the child grows.

 Psam 139:13-16 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in ithe depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me,when as yet there was none of them.

In all I do I rely heavily on prayer. God is my moral compass and I believe both sides truly believe they are showing God’s truth and love. Whether it’s supporting the unborn or caring for the poor.  And I’m the first to admit its hard for me to understand why someone feels a certain way. I don’t want to be that way. I want to show love. I want to respect what you have to say. The Bible says 


Gosh that’s hard!! It doesn’t say just those you like. It’s for all in authority. That means past and present. So if we are excited about the upcoming president, should we bash the past president?  And if we are sad about the upcoming president, should we bash him? No. That’s hard. And what’s harder is children are watching and listening. I had a child come in crying because she doesn’t want her dad to be deported. What could I do? I prayed. I prayed for peace! Look at the scripture- “so that we can live in peace.”

Our life is not the “normal” family’s situation. But this was the story God wrote for us. So yes, I am passionate about certain things. This is the story we have and I’m so thankful for God’s faithfulness and the journey. Sometimes it’s hard, sometimes I cry, but we pick ourselves up, fight for what we think is right, pray and keep going! Just keep swimming!!! 

So if you truly want to know what someone thinks and why they think it…ask! There’s a reason. And it makes perfect sense to that person. It might not make sense to you, but it allows the conversation to take place.

Sleep is overrated!!

#saidnomomever!! I think I have two hobbies, sleeping and running!!! Unfortunately, having kids messes this up! Thankfully I have an amazing husband who lets running happen!

Sleep, on the other hand is a bit difficult!! Lucas had his tonsils out December 21st. For 8 days he woke up at least two times every night! We would have to fight with him to get the medicine down. But, he got through it!! Now we are trying to get him to figure out the bathroom issues again. Children with cerebral palsy can have bathroom issues because he doesn’t have muscle tone like others. So that’s been fun!

Then we got a dog….which I thought getting a 2 year old would be helpful, but we are teaching her to sleep in her crate! Which has gotten better!! But that was a bit of an adventure. 

Then Andy got a pretty good sinus infection which made him cough more at night and snore! So he’s been on the couch some trying to let me sleep and help Jo Jo to figure out her crate. Oh sleep! I miss you! 

Then Lucas has been waking up…for random things!! One night he had some bad dreams. Another night he said he just was so excited for school!! So I try to reason with him to go to sleep, but he ends up in the bed with me because I’m too tired to talk about it!! 

Then Jack likes to wake up between 5-7am. What?? Why!! He’s pretty much lost his nap, so you need to sleep in! Sleep?? Where are you? 

So needless to say, the past 3 weeks have been a little rough!! Why do we need sleep? Why is it so important to get sleep if children seem to hate sleep and don’t want you to sleep!! One night I went to bed at 7:15 because I just couldn’t even move! Then Lucas woke up at 12:30 and 3:30. Jack woke up at 5! Luckily, I got a lot of sleep at the beginning of the night!! This video pretty much sums it up!! 

Thankful for Arbonne’s sleep spray!!! Yes, my kids use it! Yes, I use it!! It’s the best ever!! I’ve tried different meds that made me do some crazy things!! But this has been good! Even if my kids don’t stay asleep, this helps me (and them) get to sleep!! And I can use it at 3 in the morning and not be groggy!! So I’ve been praying…a lot! I know I need sleep. I know I’m a better person when I get sleep!! I can tell God is helping me through it and providing that extra “umph.” But I’m not gonna lie, I dream of sleeping in a hotel all night!! From 7pm-10am!! So, for everyone who is in the same place…you aren’t alone!! 🙂

Be Present and Pray

I’ve done the “one word of the new year” a few times, and I love it! “Be Present and Pray.” This is mine! I feel like a lot of women have 9500 things going on at one time. Some are important things, and some are time wasters/mind breaks (most of social media). I keep getting convicted that I’m not present where I’m present. At school I have to be! But at home with the kiddos and with Andy, I think most of the time (or at least most of the time with Andy) I’m catching up on work, planning something or wasting my time on social media! So my goal is to be present! If I’m at school, I’m working on school stuff and utilizing my time! At home, if the kids are up and it’s not a dire need (and I really do know what a dire need is, not just something on my mind I want to do) then I’m playing with them!! I need to make sure all the time with Andy after the kids are done is not spent on work. This way I can be present where I’m present. 



My other word is prayer. Prayer is so important to me and continues to be something I can always count on. But do I always count on it? Or just when its convenient?? Am I present in my prayer life?? If life is hard, yes! I pray! If my dog is whining til 3 in the morning, yes! I do 3 devotionals! But what about when things are pretty good and life seems “easy” for the moment.  I found this awesome idea on Pinterest. 

http://www.stonesoupforfive.com/2014/11/prayer-binder-tutorial-part-two-first.html?m=1

A prayer binder. You spend two and a half minutes in each section. I changed mine around because I needed some sections there that weren’t there!! So I made a mnemonic device. COPPS (yes, I know there are not two ps, that’s the only way I could make it work).

Confession. 

Other. (Intercession)

Praise.

Petition (prayer for me). Each day of the week is specific to something as well. I’m working on that. Since I’ll do this at night in thinktin:

Sunday- teacher

Monday- wife

Tuesday- mom

Wednesday- friend

Thursday- relationship with God

Friday-His Will for my life

Saturday- free prayer 🙂

Scripture. (Getting into a specific verse)

This is just a rough draft and might change as I start!! But I’m so excited for this notebook to guide me to be present with God!! 

So my morning routine will consist of a devotional instead of checking Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, and my night routine will be my prayer journal!! Maybe this will also help me not to waste as much time AND to sleep better!!

So that’s me! Not a word, but a phrase! Be Present and Pray! Now where will it take me? This scripture kind of sums it up for me. Am I still enough to hear God’s Word and Will for my life? Am I even listening? Am I still enough to hear what my children are saying? Maybe they are whining because they want me to play, or they had a bad day, because I’m. Of looking at them, or I’m still on my phone. Or…because they want to!! But still….Be still.

Dogs make everything better!

So my amazing husband has wanted a dog. I did not want a puppy! I wanted one who was already trained, but sweet. I had an epic fail on our last adoption, resulting in having to give him back because she tried to bite me, Andy and my dad. She was an alpha male and it just didn’t work.

So Monday came and my sister in law texted me a picture of a dog. She told me Andy had been looking at dogs almost every night! I had no idea. He said since he’s at home by himself sometimes, he would love of buddy. Well, you can’t say no to that!! So I started looking. Watauga’s Humane Society was quarantined so I looked at Avery and found the sweetest dog ever, Mistletoe.

My sister-in-law put our application in and we were called Thursday, that Mistletoe is ours and we need to pick her up Friday! So we came up with a plan to take both boys to make sure they got along and Andy would stay at home. So we came home and surprised him!

 


She was scared at the shelter. Jack would try to kiss her (eww!) and she would lick back! They said she did better than they thought! When she first got here she was skiddish, but she quickly became part of our family. I swear she could sense Lucas didn’t feel good! She cuddled with him the whole time he was awake! While Lucas was sleeping (and Jack was NOT) she cuddled some with him! She is sweet!! Hasn’t eaten much, but is drinking, ate a little treat, and has gone outside to potty!! Thank goodness!

Well, we didn’t want to keep the name Mistletoe, so my friends, Andy and I had to think of something. Lucas kept making up words to call her!!  We decided on Jo Jo because she has one ear up and one ear down. Vincent Van Gough cut his ear off on December 23rd, the day we got her. One reason they think he cut off his ear is because of his brother’s engagement to Johanna….so that came to Jo Jo. And…Andy loves painting!

So welcome Jo Jo!! Thank you for cuddling with Lucas when he feels yucky!! Thank you for being sweet when Jack gives you kisses! Thank you for being a sweet little addition to our family!