Thursday, September 17, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 17

latest obsession

Maybe this isn't my "latest" obsession, but it was definitely an obsession all. summer. long. 


I purchased an absurd amount of blueberries this summer. 
Sometimes I even eat frozen blueberries if that's all I have. 

blueberries were my go-to all summer and now that they aren't in season and they are crazy expensive, I am sad. I did break down and spend roughly $3 on a pint the other day which hurt (a little) after typically spending $1-1.50 per pint this summer. but, boy, were they delicious. 

my mouth is watering just thinking about them...

Brave Love Blog


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 16


This is probably one of the hardest prompts of this challenge. 


I want the online me to be the real me. 
But I know the tendency to make the online me look much better than the real me. 

I really do try to convey my real life in all social media areas as well as this blog, but I know I fail many times because of the pressure to make life look beautiful. all. the. time. 
Sometimes it is. Other times it is messy. Hard. Ugly. Real. 

That said, the online me is typically a cleaned up version of the real me. I desire vulnerability and you'll see posts in which I share my heart and the deep things stirring there. You'll also see pictures on Instagram that display my life through a rose-colored filter...or maybe just a dreamy black and white one. ;) 

Real life is usually messy and hectic as I care for my family and my two littles. 
But I don't want to focus so much on the messy that I miss the messy-beautiful. That's why I take the photos I do for my IG feed or this blog. Even in the midst of the hard, long, chaotic days of raising little children I want to capture the beauty that is there...because beauty is always there if you look for it. 

So, forgive me for not always being totally honest in the online realm...or maybe sometimes I'm too honest for you. Either way, I want you to see both the difficult and the beautiful moments of my life. 
Brave Love Blog


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 15

What's in your bag?

I mean really? 
Girls, this ended up being a bit embarrassing but good too.
You see, I carry around this bag that is big which is good for a momma, right? 
Only it gets cluttered with SO. MUCH. STUFF. 
This ended up being a major purse purge that was desperately needed. 

So, thanks for the writing prompt...
and maybe a few of you will get a chuckle out of what was in my purse. 

At first glance it doesn't look too bad, but that's because you can't quite see all the receipts and paper. Its stacked under the church bulletin ;) 

The important things--
cash envelope wallet
hand sanitizer
a few too many bobby pins
burt's bees lip balm (**fave!)
PastTense essential oil blend (for headaches)
target gift card

Not too important things--
necklace and earrings
an entire package of pony tail holders
dish towel (??) (to be fair, I took it to Joann's because I want to embellish it and needed to have it with me to see how much trim I would need...but its still in there...really?)
hour glass for teeth brushing
church bulletin and hidden receipts
key to beach condo (we went in MAY, people)
clothes pin
and we can't forget--a Little People shepherd (I'm obviously a mother...normal, single people or not-yet-parents don't carry Little People in their purses).

So, there ya have it! 

What's in your purse?

Brave Love Blog


Monday, September 14, 2015

Blogtempber-- Sept 14

5 books that have impacted my life the most? 
Just 5?

I read this 3-4 times.
Really, it changed me. 
It helped me to see the grace gifts that God gives...even those things that don't look like gifts.

I think I have read this twice as well. 

It gave me a new perspective on parenting and helped me to see
my role as mother with more clarity. I am called to disciple my
children and teach them about Christ. Every thing I do, every 
type of discipline I use, every conversation can point to Jesus or point away
from him. It has made me more intentional with how I 
parent my littles. 

Just finished this one. And. WOW.
Go buy it now. 

Conviction and encouragement. 
I am learning to celebrate my smallness and the
life God has given me...even if it feels small...because
Christ works in the small. 

Are you struggling with desires and dreams and how they fit
into reality? 
This book is for you! 

I was on the launch team for this book and wrote a more detailed review here. 

I read this a long time ago and have referenced it a few times. 

I think the biggest take away was developing a family mission statement
and living holistically with that purpose in mind. Working toward
that mission in everything...even the way you run your home and what kind of 
stuff you have in it. 

Very practical advice here.

Brave Love Blog


Sunday, September 13, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 13

seasons of life

Today's challenge was to create a college that represents my current season of life.
I feel like this sums it up

1. Coffee cup--I drink a pretty good amount of coffee these days...because (refer to #2)

2. "Mom of the Year"-- Not that I think that of myself, but I am a mother. I spend the bulk of my time keeping my littles alive. Which is the main reason I need all. the. coffee.

3. Table of food-- We do a lot of cooking and eating. I joke sometimes that all I do is feed people. But I have people and my people need to eat.

4. Running shoes-- my current favorite running shoe (Mizuno). I don't run super long distances or spend a ton of time on it, but I do enjoy running a couple times per week.

5. Pen-- writing. In this season I am seeing how much I process when I write. I journal daily and picking up the pace on this blog has really felt good too.

6. Books-- I've also been devouring books recently. Its difficult with littles around all the time, but I have started to make it priority because of how my soul is refreshed through reading.

What does you life look like in this season?

Brave Love Blog


Saturday, September 12, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 12

A "currently" post.
This was fun!

Reading... A Million Little Ways by Emily P. Freeman
Playing... a ridiculous amount of Candy Land
Watching... The Office...because I'm the weirdo who hasn't watched it. ever. until now.
Trying... to complete loads of laundry which means folding & putting away on the same day
Cooking... quick and simple dinners...our evenings have been super busy!
Eating... lots of fruit because it just seems to be what I am hungry for
Drinking... chai lattes...favorite from a local shop
Calling... my mom....basically daily...doesn't everyone?
Texting... quotes from Simply Tuesday to girl-friends
Pinning... new recipes and books I'd like to read and home decor for the upcoming holidays!
Tweeting... basically nothing. I'm more of an Instagrammer. ;)
Going... all the places. School. Soccer. Grocery store. Post Office. Errands seem never ending
Loving... the community God has placed around me and the relationships He is deepening
Hating... the season of "limbo" our family is in...more on that later
Discovering... a love and desire for writing
Thinking... about the desires God placed in my heart, what makes me come alive & what does it mean for my life?
Feeling... all kinds of feelings because we are still trying to figure out our next steps in this life
Hoping (for)... a long, cool, beautiful Fall
Listening (to)... uplifting instrumental relaxing!
Celebrating... the smallness of my everyday life
Smelling... Harvest candle from Yankee Candle...Fall in a jar.
Thanking... God for the gifts even in the mundane
Considering... what God has for me & this blog
Starting... to get my shop ready for Fall with new nursing scarves!
Finishing... Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman. This book touched my soul deeply.

Brave Love Blog

Friday, September 11, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 11

So, its Friday! 


Let's pretend I have decided to just stay in on this lovely Friday night. The possibilities for enjoying a Friday night in are seemingly endless right now! 

Maybe I'd enjoy a simple dinner and then get the kids to bed so I could enjoy some time with Hubs. 

Or maybe after the kids are down I'd....

spend time sewing. 

read a book. 

sit out back by the fire pit just talking with Hubs. 

play Settlers of Catan with friends.

bake and eat chocolate chip cookies.

watch a movie (aka fall asleep).

I know what you're thinking... "This girl lives on the wild side"! Haha! 
It might seem a little boring to you to spend a Friday night like this, but life for us right now is so busy that a quiet evening at home just enjoying some of the things that are life giving to me sounds amazing! 

Brave Love Blog


Thursday, September 10, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 10

10 bucket list items

I have never really sat down to write out a bucket list. So I did that today. 
Granted, I'm sure there will be future additions as I think about things that I couldn't think of today, but its a start! 

Can I just say that its a little scary to put your bucket list out there? Like, I'm not accountable to do these things! If I don't will I be a loser? Are my bucket list items considered silly in the eyes of others? Guess its time (again) to be brave and put a little piece of my heart out there!

Here are 10 items from my bucket list. 
Some I have already done others I am still waiting to do. 
These are just random priority placed on this list...just a list. 

1. Have a garden that is fruitful from which I can feed my family. I'd like to eventually have enough produce to can for my family's use. 

2. Get a tattoo. I just can't decide what I want and I want it to be meaningful. 

3. Donate my hair. 

4. Learn how to capture beautiful pictures. 

5. Visit Greece. 

6. Live in a big city. 

7. Plant a church with Hubs. 

8. Buy a house. 

9. Read through the entire Bible. (Haven't decided if that should be "in a year" or give myself a little longer to complete the task). 

10. Have a signature/secret recipe.

What's on your bucket list?

Brave Love Blog

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 9

Dear 16-year-old girl,

Wow! You're finally 16! Such an exciting time in your can now drive...a real car! I'm sure your parents are totally flipping out like mine did. My mom made me practice driving in the cemetery because the "roads" were kind of similar to real roads but I couldn't kill anyone. maybe that wasn't funny to you, but it was always our joke.

Seriously though. These next 2 years are going to fly by. Then you'll be 18 and headed off to college where you'll be basically on your own...with a few care packages of cookies and candy from your mom every now and then. Can I give you a few small (but really big) pieces of advice?

You might think I am old, but I remember those days. The year I turned 15 was the year God started really working on my life. So those high school years are prominent in my memory. And I'm honestly not that much older than you...even though I struggle with SnapChat I am still pretty young.

You may be feeling like pulling away from your parents...your mom in particular. Don't. She loves you. She may seem unreasonable at times, but really she is trying to figure out this road that is somewhere between parenting and letting you go. Its hard. She's trying her best. She wants what is best for you. Though it may seem she just doesn't understand, she does. She's been there. And even if you pull away, go back. Because even if you pull away, she still loves you. Always.

Your identity is not in who you are, what you wear, who your friends are, or who your boyfriend is.

Life isn't about what you wear...but you can dress cute and trendy. Just do it because YOU want to not because someone else will approve of you more. Life isn't about who your friends are...but have friends. Invest in friends who build you up. Enjoy friends who love you for YOU not because of what you offer them. Life isn't about boyfriends...but have friends that are guys. Go out in groups and have fun. Learn how the male gender operate (because they think really differently than woman). Enjoy the company of boys but don't let the boy control YOU or make YOU important. You are important because you are a beautiful creature of God.  He made you to desire companionship with the opposite sex, but hold of for a little while. Just be YOU for now.

Seek Christ during this time. I seems really un-cool. But you'll be thankful you did. Seek to know what He says about you. Who you are in Him. Beloved. Cared for. Rejoiced over. BEAUTIFUL.

Really what I am saying is, glorify God in your conduct, seek Him, and have fun. Sixteen is such a fun time! New. Exciting. Invigorating. Enjoy every second...don't grow up to quickly.


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Blogtember-- Sept 8


Typically, my favorite season is Fall. 

The crispness in the air. 
Football season. 
Cool mornings/evenings with warm afternoons. 
All the Fall holidays. 
A cooling off after the summer heat.
Finally wearing jeans again...and scarves! 
All the colors of the changing leaves. 
Back to school...back to routines.
Fall scented Yankee Candles (only the BEST). 

I really do love the Autumn season. 

This year, however, for some reason I am not as much longing for it.

I think its because our entire month of June was consumed with rain and storms. Literally...every day. 
The summer didn't feel long enough. Then there's the fact that after Fall is Winter and I just plain don't like Winter. Last Winter we had too much snow for my liking and my kids were sick constantly for an entire month. YUCK! Winter brings snow, cold, and sickness...not my idea of fun. 

Though I love Fall and I always will, I'm still holding on to these last few days of summer...
and enjoying the fact that football season has begun!

Brave Love Blog 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Blogtember--Sept 7

You may have noticed that the name of my blog is "Life-Lover". 
Interesting, eh? 

Let me tell you about its origin. 

Hubs and I spent 6 months in Uganda at a ministry called New Hope Uganda. While there we were involved in a 20-week intense discipleship course. During that time God did so many things in our hearts and started freeing us from the bondage that held us captive. 

One of the many things we learned to put into our daily lives was repentance. 

Repentance is basically recognizing your sin, turning from it, and seeking Christ's truth. 

We sought to live a life of repentance and walk in daily repentance to God and to those around us. That is hard. But always extremely worth it. I hate confrontations, but typically find that once I have spoken my sin/struggle to someone else (especially the person I have been struggling and sinning against) it has much less power over me and I can live freely knowing I have confessed and turned away. 

During our time in Uganda is when I started this blog (or shortly there after). 

God gave me the verse 1 Peter 3:10  as a reminder of the importance of repentance, speaking truth, and seeking peace in relationships with others. This verse says 

"For 'Whoever desires to love life and see good days,
let him keep is tongue from evil
and his lips from speaking deceit
let him turn away from evil and do good
let him seek peace and pursue it.' " 

Even though repentance, truth speaking, and peace seeking can be hard soul work, 
it leads to a life that is what Christ requires and one that is lovely. One that I can love and enjoy.  

That's what this blog is about. Loving the life God has called me to...the hard and the easy...the peaceful and the chaotic...all of it. And I can do that because of what Christ has done for me.  

Brave Love Blog


Sunday, September 6, 2015

Blogtember--Sept 6

What's your style? Likes? Dislikes?

fashion dislikes
My fashion dislikes:
1. Ed Hardy-- just gross. 
2. UGG boots--do I need to explain? I understand that they are "comfortable" and "so warm", but they do nothing for me in the way of looks. 
3. Super Skinny Jeans-- I just don't like to have to be peeled out of my pants. Loosen up a little! 
4. Louis Vuitton-- I'm not huge on designer hand bags (except for the Coach that was gifted to me), especially these. Again, the look of them just isn't appealing to me. Maybe its because I've seen too many fakes and even the real ones look cheap to me. 
5. High heels-- I typically steer clear of high heels, although I have one pair of wedges that I love. Hubs isn't too much taller than me and any heel that is too tall makes me taller than him which neither of us like.  

fashion likes
My fashion likes and go-tow! 
1. Sunnies-- I am rarely caught without mine. I love them and my eyes have gotten so used to them that I can't be in the sun very long without them.
2. Scarves-- An accessory that I probably use too much in Fall/Winter/Spring. I've missed my scarves this summer! 
3. Tunic tees-- I picked up a few of these loose-fitting this summer and have really loved them. Cute and comfy and cool! 
4. Leggings-- I was opposed to leggings for a while, but not I have come to appreciate their place in the wardrobe. I don't wear them very often, but I am always pleasantly surprised at how comfortable they are when I do wear them. 
5. Fitted tees-- especially v-neck. I probably have too many of these, but they are very versatile. I have worn them with jeans, shorts, or even dressed them up with a skirt and some jewelry. 
6. Boyfriend style denim shorts-- Picked up a pair at GAP this summer and I have worn them almost daily! So comfy and they go with everything! I should have gotten more than one pair! 
7. Birkenstocks-- Say what you want about Birks, but they are making a come back. And I'd wear them even if they weren't. Ordered mine 6 years ago before we moved to Uganda, wore them daily for the 6 months we were there, and they are always the first thing I break out when the temps are warm enough to let me toes be exposed. The comfort level is out of this world. 

Brave Love Blog

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