Friday, May 29, 2015

"Everyone Has A Story….I'm Carrying This One With Me"

So I have been sitting on these stories and waiting for the right time to share. This is a long post… but worth reading to the end if you want "the real story" :) Funny tidbit of info that is important in how I got some of this inspiration.  I joined a buy/sell group or two or three… LOL... on Facebook….  I went hog wild selling all kinds of STUFF I didn't need anymore.  It was going so well that I decided to sell furniture and redo a little here and there.  After 14 years you get a little tired of same color schemes throughout… I am so proud to say I have redone a lot all with the earnings I have made from this site and it's truly made redecorating on a budget a reality.  It has been SO fun!  I know you think how in the world could it be fun… well… lots of these things are porch pickups and you don't meet these folks.  But some are larger or more $$ items that cause you to need to let them in your home.  So here is a brief recap….

I have met so many people!  They were strangers.  Many shared their stories with me.  I can't list them all but can say almost all had a neat story and left an imprint on me and I hoped I left one on them too.  I was so inspired that I begin to pray about these people I was meeting and wondered who God would send to me next…to buy my junk?  I had a lady that was a 2 time breast cancer survivor, tattoo on her neck for celebration of this and also a double mastectomy.  She bought pictures from me that said Faith, Hope & Love and said this was her new motto in life.  Told me so much about her life.  You would never have known to look at her.  We had a beautiful visit and I quickly realized…this was going to be interesting. People want to talk and people need to someone to listen.  Who would be next?  Had several people with things that they shared but the one that took me by surprise was the one I wasn't expecting.

I also could see what other people on this group were selling and found a beautiful antique table and chairs for my dining room to become a project for me.  I quickly jumped on this amazing deal and went to pick it up the next day.  You have to be willing to pick up promptly cause there are lots of other people under you who want things you want too.  This was the case for the table.  So I left the littles home with my hubby who works from home and quickly drove just under 30 minutes to get there.  I had to get on the person's Facebook page to send her a message and noticed her cover photo was an elderly woman looking out a window…. beautiful photo with the perfect lighting.  Little did I know I would be at a beautiful 5 acre lot with a gorgeous southern style home with giant trees…(just what this mama would love) Extremely nice retired couple talked to me and told me all about this table.  It was a project for her daughter and she didn't have time and need it anymore.  It had been in their family for 70 years.  All the talking was fun… but after loading up I noticed the time and felt like I truly needed to hurry home.  Then I stood in the driveway under the giant trees with the breeze while God said… Don't be in such a rush…. just calm down and listen to this lady.  This lady was amazing.  She told me all about her 91 year old mother that lived with her and had dementia and needed 24/7 care. …. all which she does by herself. She tells me of  how things are getting harder and she can't make it to the restroom anymore… how her and her husband can't go anywhere or do anything.  The desperation in this woman's face was heartbreaking because she clearly had so much love in her heart for her mother and family, but was exhausted and it was wearing on her.  So much so, that she would tell a stranger her story. I did have a few things to say to her and tried my best to encourage her.. but I knew driving away from this beautiful place… there was a lady inside that had a story she needed someone to Just Listen to  her that day.  It brought the reality of what life is all about …. Serving others.

We grow up and our parents serve us… they raise us.  We have children and serve and raise them and then we get old and our children serve and take care of us until we are no longer on this earth.  It's the cycle of life on this earth.  God meant for us to serve and take care of other people.  Not just ourselves.  People need People.   Listening to that lady that day made me realize we need to slow down and let the wind blow on us and not rush to the next thing. Take time to talk to someone.  I had the opportunity that day…no kiddos to chase… no where to truly HAVE to be and God just said… just stay and listen for bit.  I am so glad I did. This brings me to my somewhat of a closing in that… we never know what tomorrow holds…. stop and listen today… take time to serve someone today… make someone else your priority today…. I know this first hand because 8 years ago I didn't get the tomorrow.

I will never forget the Sunday I got a phone call right as I arrived at a friend's house to hang out… My Daddy was checking on me making sure I hadn't gone into labor with my #2 Emmie Lou.  I am soooo glad I sat in the car and talked to him sitting in the driveway… because it was the last time I got to.  The next day was Memorial Day and that night he would be in a motorcycle wreck.  I didn't know until the next day May 29th.  Only 53 years old when he died,  but my Daddy had a story!  I will carry him and his story in my heart always.  It has forever changed my outlook on life and what matters.  How to get through the hard and savor the happy.  He set an amazing example with a story of his own imperfect childhood, persevering on in this life with a beautiful marriage and two daughters.  He made mistakes, he conquered much, set his mind on something and did it to the utmost perfection, he supported me, loved deeply, worked hard, would give the shirt off his back for others…. But MOST of all… after all of life's failures/successes he came FULL CIRCLE and KNEW what MATTERED!  That's what is so bittersweet about his life ending so soon…. Sometimes when you are living the life and doing what matters, you don't realize how much it matters until it's gone.  Getting to have had conversations about this life with him in the end is what gives me peace 8 years later.  Even though my heart was cut wide open…. my daddy's death is part of what has made me who I am. It's building me.  Although I wish he could physically be here to help build me on this journey of life…. the loss of him is doing something of its own.  I know he would want me to use it for my "story" in this life so that I can carry it with me…until I see him again.

Everyone has a story…. what's yours?  I have one.  But it's still in the rough draft…. I feel like I still have the chance to "edit" it….because I want it to be the "best story".  I want my kids to know my story. I want God to help me proofread it.  I want him to help me tell it.  I want him to be my publisher.  We all have a story, but I think for us to have a story to be told,  we need "other people" in our lives to be the characters.  No one wants to read a story about one person.  God intends on our stories to be about us with lots of other people… listening to other people, serving other people, giving to other people, crying and laughing and celebrating with other people, sharing His Love with other people.

Until next time…you can think and decide what section of the library would you want your story to be in?

Love this

Here are a few pics of my Daddy…. pictures are such a story of our lives aren't they?  I take a lot of pictures and love to look back.  They tell the story of us and who we were during different times of our lives.  But behind every picture is a "real person" that has a story…. If we all knew one another's stories… life would be a little more real at times huh?

a young one….. I can see me in his face.  
So young and handsome!  
Only my daddy would have an owl….. 

I will see you again…. This is not where it ends…. I will carry you with me!
It's so hard to look at photos… because I feel like I could just touch him.  I see behind those eyes and know how much more there was to this man.

Isaiah 41:10  “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Isaiah 43:2  “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.”
Psalm 18:28  “You, Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.”
Psalm 46:1-2  “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.”
Revelation 21:4  “ ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

Friday, May 15, 2015

"You Gotta Get Lower... So You Can Jump Higher…So You Can Get S-T-R-O-N-G-E-R!!"

So I know you are probably wondering where this title came from… It's been sticking with me for a couple months now.  One of my dear friends and instructors at the gym teaches a total conditioning class and her class was my first love of the group fitness classes.  I started them about 3 years ago ish and have a whole new love for group fitness! I have met so many wonderful people and truly love my gym family!  There are days you are too tired to go… too sore to move… etc. etc.. But somehow your "girls" pull you there.  Once you get there…you start moving and feeling better… you see smiles of your peeps that do what you do and love to work out.  You sweat, you pant, you wonder if you can squat any more!!!  But you look up on the stage and above the music you hear this spunky, energetic voice pumping you up, encouraging you to do 8 more.. to go harder… to give it all you got… to keep going… to not give up…. I love you Paula!
So one day she said,
 "You gotta get lower, so you can jump higher, so you can get stronger!"
WOW!  HELLO!  Is that true to LIFE?  Is that true to MOTHERHOOD?  
Sometimes we are LOwwww!  We are covered up with mess!  We are smothered in to do's.  We are drowning in demands.  We lose some gusto and feel beaten down.  I have said it once… I have said it twice.. I will say it again… My Mama always told me that's when you are "in the valley"… YEP!!  Been there… done that.  I am sure I will visit there again.  Blah, Blah, Blah!

This quote has such deep meaning to me.  
For it's when we are at the L-O-W that we have to JUMP UP to get back HIGH on the mountaintop…and when you go through the journey and you go from the low to the high…. you get STRONGER!
This is true to all in life…. "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger?"  Yep… that one too!  
So in the days of this life…. in the days of motherhood… just know…you can't always stay up high…. sometime you do have to get low!  You have to get there so you can appreciate the high and the "what really matters".  It's truly when the Lord can do all sorts of things inside our hearts and we persevere and pull ourselves back to the living and move on from the heartaches, the hard times, the H-A-R-D.  
Life is full of hard.  But it's also full of Happy!  I am wishing all the Mamas a very Happy Belated Mother's Day and a Happy May!  

 I am Mama!  I am SO HAPPY to be MAMA to these wonderfully made children!!!

 These are my little bunch of oranges…. as I typed that I thought how they will soon enough be big bunch of oranges…. sniff sniff

 On this Journey Together…. 
He is like the streamers on my bicycle that sparkle and blow in the wind as I ride through motherhood…. when I look down at them they help me keep pedaling… help me smile and not take life too seriously…. feel happy and young even if I'm getting older and feel tired.  I love this man more and more!  

 Mother's Day at church

 My Mama…. Does she know?  Does she really know?  Her roots are deep and her love is big….. She's watered me my whole life… She's watched me wither…She's watched me shine…. Her presence has never left.  She is such a part of my soul and my heart… and when God made me he gave me a little bit of her in me... and I know this… and I feel this…. and I am thankful…. because even though God made us all different and special in our own way…. it feels like a such a GIFT to have an ounce of her in me!  I love you Mama!

 My Mama and Sissy and my precious 1 year old nephew who is getting too big!!!!!

Happy Mother's Day to my beautiful Sissy

Some Happy Quotes for Life and Motherhood!

 Too pretty and cheery not to share!  It is truly such a journey and there is joy in it!  Sometimes it might be hidden under the covers or behind a cloud… but if you slow down enough….you will find some.

 I sing this… I say this… I love this!

 Love this!  
 Yes… I live by the one day at a time all too often… I use to be more planny… yes I like a schedule and routine but sometimes the feeling of let's see what tomorrow is when it comes feels so good and stress-less.  
 Oh Heavens!  Once I get caught up…. I get 3-4 baskets behind and feel like I can't breathe with so much laundry on top of so many other to dos….. I know this will go so fast and I will wish I had a little nightgown to fold or little super hero underwear to wash…..

 We have to have a little humor about motherhood right? :)

 Awww!  Sigh!  Don't we sometimes get lost in all the "rights and wrongs" of parenting and lose sight of the "good kid" in front of us that is just waiting to be accepted and loved just how God made them

 I feel this way about my mama…. excited I have 2 daughters to call me a lifelong friend too one day

 so many times people say this to me…. "You sure have your hands full"  Sometimes they are smiling and sometimes they look like they might offer me some free therapy sessions out of pity…. but no matter what…. I know…. it might look like a circus to others sometimes but at the end of the day…. I am glad to have all of my kiddos!  My heart is full!  

 Love this!  Love who God made you to be and do it the best you can!  :)

 Simple and Sweet
 Don't worry… there is plenty of that around here!  Hopefully they will benefit from it!  :)

Made me laugh and made me cry because it's just who they are isn't it?

A few pics of our loves and our lately…..

 My calm and sweet angel girl who loves nature and the simple things

 My soon to be Kindergartner who loves the deer lease and huntin with Daddy

 My always unexpected comedian who will bring a laugh right out of your gut

 My sunshine on a swing

 This is what they do if they get my phone!  Makes me happy!

Mother's Day weekend was also a treat in that we got to celebrate with some of our very dearest friends and the opening of their 2nd bakery.  We are so happy and proud for them!  

 Village Baking Company…. and the new one is Boulangerie by Village Baking Co.
I never knew what I was in for when I first tasted this bread and the croissants!  A whole new luxury of life in your mouth!  :)

 Gorgeous Bakery
 Love to celebrate!
 Love these people!
 Are we too old to all cram in together?  No way!

 So look what I have been up to?  :)  Canning Salsa! 

Homemade salsa….. Please excuse the dirty all day hair….and something in my teeth…. lol
This is my guilty pleasure!  Num, Num, Num!  
Happy Mama!

Are you listening to the music on here?  If not… click here for the sweetest song by the awesome contestant on The Voice… Sawyer Fredericks…. "Shine On"  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this song and his voice!!!

Keep shining on friends!  Sing a new song!  We are learning!  Shine ON!  There'll be time enough for darkness when everythings gone.  There is work to be done!  We have children to raise!  We have a life to live here on this earth… that MATTERS! 

Next up…… Everyone Has A Story to share…. what's yours?  I have been blessed by strangers and their stories!  

Friday, May 1, 2015

"We ARE Gonna Make It! Livin On A Prayer….. A Rescue In Motherhood!"

So if you listen to my music on here… you are probably laughing… I love music!  All kinds from all times!  I hear a song and can almost put meaning to it for this life or my life!  Heard a little Bon Jovi "Living On A Prayer" while running and the words just S-T-U-C-K!  I thought…this is perfect for Mother's Day coming up!   So true…. 

 "We've got to hold on to what we've got
It doesn't make a difference if we make it or not
We've got each other and that's a lot for love
We'll give it a shot
Woah, we're half way there
Woah, livin' on a prayer
Take my hand, we'll make it I swear
Woah, livin' on a prayer"

Aren't we all seriously just "LIVING ON A PRAYER"???  Some days we are wound up like a ball of yarnhangin on by a thread…. danglin in the ditches…. whispin in the weeds….. feeling like we are on a roller coaster that never stops!!!
But man don't it feel so great when you are RESCUED and  have that moment… that day… that week… that everything sinks… in place… runs smoothly… just works like you want it to???  
It's those moments… that we find our "joy" and we continue living on a prayer of thankfulness for our blessings… for strength to get through the moments of parenting… for a God that listens to us anytime we want to talk to him.  
Yes… We are Living On A Prayer!  We will make it!  We do have to hold on to what God has blessed us with!  Take care of it… Use it to glorify Him. 
Until next time….Happy May Everyone!  More Mother's Day Mumbles coming soon!  :)

For the Mother's Day Month of May and Every month after that….
 I hope you are living on a prayer….  

 Pray like little children


 Love the little joys!  So little….yet so big!

I told you this was coming…. here are some of my flowers!  :)

 Coffee, quiet time, birds chirping, pretty flowers to look at….. yes, yes, yes

 patio plants are a must

These just jump out and kiss me and make me happy

 Rose Bushes… that need some love and mulch

 Flowers have been loving the rain!  Vibrant!

 smell, smell, smell 

 When I say pink…you say… PINK!!!!  

Simply Stated

 Some days it's just Elsa and Sonny

 I love this picture! Do this!  Cut your kids giant pieces of watermelon and it seriously will let you cook supper (after you take their adorable picture) and occupy them in all kinds of wonderful ways!  :)

 Surprise Lunch at school!  I take him sushi because he's cool like that and eats everything in the world!

 Does this explain Texas Sports? My Lacrosse Player Son will say YES!

Her 1st pair of "designer heels"….. You must pause for a pose in Target with your new Elsa pumps.  

 This big boy is growing up!  He is looking mighty colorful in his matchy outfit!

 I will pose
I will pose in the flowers
I will pose with my hands on my hips
 I will pose with pig tails
I will pose with my new elsa shoes
I will pose with pink lipstick all around my lips
I will pose like I am walking the pink carpet and everyone is watching

 Jensie at a birthday party for one of "her" friends

 This hat!  He is one of his own kind!  I love him!

 Loves nature and all things growing and crawling in it  :)
 some days we just can't make it without a nap…. mama too :)
 Is my third child graduating preschool?  How can it be that 3 of the Orange Kids will be in Elementary School next year?  I feel like I just had this 9 lb. baby boy!

 We like to get dirty!  Really, Really Dirty! You know you aren't in "Complete Trouble" when your mama gives you the look but then pauses and says, "Hold on, I have to take your picture!"  :)
 All Mama did was make supper…. Boy did she have her work cut out that night!  After I took this pic here comes Sonny…our very white dog… that was very brown!  

 "I don't want to look at the camera mama, I want to look over here!"  
Well ok then!  I will take that shot too… thank you very much you beautiful little child!  :)

 Pretty girls

 Do we have to look at each other?  I did this for you MeeMaw! :)

 Loves to climb!  Just like her big sissy!

 Fieldtrips are Fun with FunYuns!  :)  Expecially when it's adventurous with rope climbing, balancing and zip lining!  Yes Please!!!

 Is Daddy ready for the Z-I-P LINE???  

 This is how we snuggle

Love this!!!  Life is a struggle.  Motherhood is a struggle.  Parenting is a struggle.  It's what you "do" with the struggles that make Life worth living!  

We ain't scared though…. we got this! 

When you get "the call" from the nurses office…. and you hear the "L word"…. you cringe, you start scratching your head… you think… panic a little… scratch some more…. You check everyone like a crazy person… You shampoo everyone even though only one kid had it and it's all over their grade level…yikes ….you wash sheets and blankets.. you spray… you do your duties…. knowing…. it can happen again… and if and when it does…. you just go with it…. because this is Life…. it doesn't make you dirty… it doesn't make you bad… it just makes you alive on this earth… and this is life. 
So put a grocery bag over your head and take a selfie!  
All willing participants are in this selfie!  LOL!  
(This was sent to a school friend who also has it... for good moral support and a good laugh)

They are worth the struggles…. They are worth the sacrifice… They are worth anything!
  We are gonna make it!  Livin on a Prayer…. Take My Hand… We'll Make It Orange Kids!  :)

Be Rescued!

This is why we ARE gonna make it!  

Sunny Side Up!

Summer is SUNNY SIDE UP!!!! It’s been the kind of Summer this Mama loves! Sometimes we are one day at a time... one hour at a time. No plans...