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The Liebster Award

One of my (if not my most) favorite things about the Internet and social media is the community it creates. So, I was extremely encouraged and flattered that one of my sweet real-life and blogger friends, Jessica Jones, nominated me for the Liebster Award!

Jessica, Keeping Up With The Joneses, writes straight from her heart and is so relatable as a woman, wife, mama, daughter, friend, etc. A recent favorite post of hers, Citizens of No Land, speaks on refugees and what she has learned as a missionary living in a refugee neighborhood. It is mind-opening (if that is a thing, ya know, like eye-opening) and makes you take a look at the topic in a new light. So, go ahead, click that link to her blog or follow her on Instagram, mrsjessjonesy, and see her influence from behind her keyboard and camera. You will not be disappointed!

Alright, now, what is this award, you ask?

It is an award given blogger to blogger to create exposure, connect and support one another. And it has been around since 2011!

There are a few, easy guidelines to follow when you are nominated for a Liebster:

1. Write a blogpost about your nomination, displaying an image of the award.

2. Thank the person who nominated you and include a link to their blog.

3. Answer the 11 questions the person who nominated you asked you in his/her blogpost.

4. Nominate 5-11 other new bloggers who you think deserve this award, and come up with 11 questions of your own for them to answer.

5. List these rules in your blogpost.

My answers to Jessica’s questions:

1. Why did you start your blog?

At first, it was just sort of supposed to be a journal about my life and family for me to look back on. But, it turned into a medium where I aim to encourage, uplift and challenge whoever is reading to press into and rest in the Lord…where I find myself at daily.

2. Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give your 13 year old self?

Truly seek Scripture for truth and life… And believe it. Also, stop caring so much about boys.

3. What are three things you can’t live without?

Crushed ice. (Oops, this definitely popped into my head first!) Jesus. Jordan.

4. Cat or Dog? Why?

Oooh, tough. I think cat at this point in my life. Easier to take care of.

5. What is your guilty pleasure tv show or movie?

Haha, The Bachelor/Bachelorette.

6. Where was your last, best vacation?

Jordan’s family takes a vacation to the east coast every summer, beach house and all. It is not always rainbows and butterflies with 50-ish people in one house, but there are always so many beautiful moments. Whether it be the scenery or the heart to heart talks, I am always thankful.

7. Where do you get your inspiration to write?

I think it’s because I’m an introvert. It’s always been an easy outlet to write. I have time gather my thoughts and assemble them in ways I could not otherwise get out of my head or mouth.

8. What do you have for breakfast?

Lately, oatmeal.

9. What is your best feature?

My empathy. I feel with, for and really deeply about people and their lives.

10. What would plan B have been, career wise?

I could never decide! I was in college taking pre-requisites for a medical degree (nursing or dental hygiene) when I got married. Soon after, Jordan got into nursing school, so we both worked odd jobs to support that. And then kids happened and well, yeah… I cannot imagine being either of those things now! Especially since I have discovered I have almost zero tolerance of blood or injuries. Like, cue major freaking out every time my children hurt themselves. Yikes.

11. Would you still blog if you knew no one would read it?

Yes! Although, it is SO easy to get caught up in affirmation from others.

The bloggers I’m nominating for the Liebster Award are:

1. Darla- Dear Darla

2. Jordan- Jordan Alderman

3. Barb- Barb Inspired

4. Ashley- Awaken Ashley

5. Erica- The Domestic Mustang

Here are my questions for my nominated bloggers:

1. What is your goal for your blog?

2. Cake or pie?

3. If you had to choose one word to describe yourself, what would it be?

4. What is your favorite gift/present you have ever received?

5. Do you thrive in bigger or smaller groups of people?

6. What is your favorite song right now?

7. You get home and walk in your front door, what do you next?

8. Fruits or vegetables?

9. What is your favorite smell?

10. What time do you go to bed?

11. How old were you when you got your first cell phone?

Thankful for your writing and willingness to share your life with me, ladies! Cannot wait to read your answers to my silly questions!

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Encouragement, Faith, Family

The End

Tears. 

“I quit. I’m done. I have nothing left. I quit.”
I find myself there a lot. A LOT.
It feels lonely.
Like everyone else has it going better for them.
Why this job?
Why these personalities?
Why does it at all feel so hard?
Why do I constantly feel at the end of myself?
Because I am.
Because I wasn’t meant to thrive in and of myself.
My husband wasn’t made to make everything better.
My kids weren’t born to give me rest and peace.
But there is someone who was before and is in and above and under it all.
Jesus Christ. God. The Holy Spirit.
He is.
Sustainer.
I know I write about the same thing over and over again.
But it’s where the Lord has me.
It’s why he has given me the aforementioned blessings.
To bring me to my knees and bring me back to Him.
The one who “makes everything better”.
The one who gives me rest and peace.
The one who has carried me through another day.
And the one who gave me enough time to make chocolate chips cookies. 😉
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Encouragement, Faith

Voices

For a long time, I have so badly wanted to have a voice that people paid attention to. Both in real life and online.

Having a voice would mean:
I am heard. I am acknowledged. I have meaning.

Right?

But wait..

Whose voice believes lies?
Whose voice is easily angered?
Whose voice is self seeking?

Mine.

Whose voice is life giving?
Whose voice is never failing?
Whose voice is truth speaking?

God’s.

My voice does not matter. My voice is destructive.

It is only by God’s grace and mercy that anything I say or do has worth.

In reality, I don’t want people to hear my voice.

I want them to hear His.

His voice in His living word.

So, here’s to having a voice… A voice that is influenced, stayed and rested in THE VOICE.

May that be all that matters.

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Faith, Family

Reset

Jordan and I tend to have hilarious arguments. Once it’s all said and done we look back and laugh and laugh. Taking turns quoting our favorite one-liners from the other person.

The most recent little spat involved me pushing on one side of our bathroom door to shut Jordan out and him pushing back on the other.

“I’m the only one that keeps our house clean and running!”

“You just had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and I had NOTHING!” (This was Jordan’s favorite quote of mine. Like babe.. Really? You’re mad at me for eating a PB&J? I hadn’t eaten yet, ok?)

“There’s so much to do and not enough time to do it!”

“I’m tired of our kids messes being everywhere!”

Jordan eventually talked me out of my hiding spot and laid me down on our bed. Cleaned our bathrooms. And came and sat next to me.

“Babe. You need to appreciate the messes. Appreciate our children. Appreciate the life that is lived here. Appreciate that it shows.”

Reality check.

It’s time to press the reset button.

Combat the lies that what earth has to offer is the ultimate.

Stop pushing the kingdom aside.

Less cleaning and more being.

Looking at the messes and seeing life.

This is where I begin to embrace the chaos.

Less of me, more of Him.

Team huddle. Arms in.

Let’s do this thing!

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Faith, Family, Health

The Unexpected

It was a normal day for this family of four. Daddy was at work, baby was up early and toddler was whining about something.
But.
The toddler whining about something was a little excessive and mama intuition kicked in.
I face-timed Jordan an hour before it happened.
“Hey babe, can you look at Jane? She’s acting kind of strange.”
“She’s probably just tired.”
“Ok.”
Enter: God.
I got a text on my phone from my mom asking if her and my sister could come over for a little bit. My sister living out of town, neither of those things happened very often.
I say this because I cannot imagine what happened next without them being there.
Sovereign God.
Fast forward to grandma playing with her grand-babies.
She walked inside and Jane was toddling behind her. She turned around…
“Jane, what are you looking at?”
This is where things get hazy.
Jane stumbled to her left and my mom caught her.
“Call 911!”
I looked at my baby, face twisted and seizing in my moms arms.
I began to shake my head.
No. No. No.
This can’t be happening.
I ran down the street screaming.
My sister called 911.
I called Jordan.
“You need to come home! Jane isn’t breathing.”
Jane was turning blue and laying in my moms arms.
For what felt like an eternity.
She set her down on the floor.
Color began to flood her face and she sort of mumbled “Ma-ma-ma-ma.”
Thank you, God.
My baby was alive.
Then came the ambulance, the ER, the tests.
She was cleared and sent home.
But there was NOTHING clear in this mama’s head and heart.
It took about a week for me to deal with the shock and those images.
They are still there.
But God has been so gracious in softening them.
What else has God been gracious in?
Reminding me that my babies are His.
Reminding me to hold them loosely.
Reminding me that He loves them more.
Reminding me that they are here for his glory.
As am I.
And you’d think that after this happened he would no longer be good.
But He is.
He is still so good.
I look back at old blog posts and laugh.
The theme of my life, right?

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Encouragement, Faith

Prone to Wander

Ever have one of those days? Where you are trying with everything in you to turn the day around and one thing after the next… You’re just done. I have those days, a lot. And the other day, at the end of my rope, I turned on my favorite hymns and remembered: “Ahh, this is where I’m supposed to be. Worshipping.”

worship
[wur-ship]
verb
to feel an adoring reverence or regard for
synonyms: devotion, prayer, awe, glory, praise

So, why is worship where I should be?

1. To remember my place. I don’t know about you, but so, so often I forget that I am the created one. Who was the One that knit me together in my mother’s womb? Who sustains my every breath in and out? Who provides the very means to keep the world spinning? That is not me. That is my Creator.

2. Less of me, more of Him. The answer to all my problems is for everything to revolve around me, for me to get what I want, right? Wrong. When I fall into this trap (again…often) I am left unfulfilled and broken. We were not created to glorify ourselves. We were created to point all life and breath and being back to the One who gives just that.

3. To fight the comparison game. Ok. Do you feel me here? Our culture (read: me) is so wrapped up in what others think and it. is. so. deadly. Deadly to joy. Deadly to freedom. Deadly to relationships. How can we war in that battle? By putting ourselves in the position of humility and getting on our knees in worship. Reminding our heart and mind that it isn’t about how many likes we got or how many followers we have. It’s about the solid rock— Jesus Christ— that isn’t moved or subject to change; that won’t fail us.

What are some ways that you incorporate worship into daily life? Answer in the comments! I would love to hear from you.

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Faith, Health

‘Tis So Sweet

I looked around the waiting room and noticed I was the only 20-something.

“This will be no big deal, I’ll be in and out quickly.” I thought to myself.

“Kristin?”

I stood up, walked back to the room and was instructed to put a gown on.

“The doctor will be in shortly.”

He came in and told me he would do an ultrasound and that should be it. We would find out what we needed to know and I would be sent home.

A couple minutes passed.

“I’m going to do a biopsy.”

He left the room and I was left with my thoughts.

“What? Wait. I wasn’t prepared for this.”

The nurse came in to set things up, the doctor followed. I was numbed and poked. Given hopeful words. And sent on my way.

I got in the car and hot tears began to pour. They wouldn’t stop.

The two days waiting for those results were extremely difficult.

I couldn’t look at my family without crying. I replayed things over and over in my head. I didn’t want to talk. I just wanted to crawl into bed and not wake up until I got that phone call.

The phone call came.

“Kristin, the test came back negative. It’s benign.”

More tears.

Thank you, Lord.

Thank you, Lord, for that not being my story right now. Thank you, Lord, for bringing me through that valley. Thank you, Lord, for continuing to show me that I’m not in control. Thank you, Lord, for beginning to peel off another nasty layer of my sinful heart…

As I continue to flesh out what the Lord is teaching me, one thing is certain:

I need grace.

I need grace to trust Him more.

And He is ready and willing, forever and always.

Ready to give life and rest and joy and peace.

Now, won’t you come with me?

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