Anchored: A Book Review

  

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If you love a good Southern mommy blog (and I hope you do , if you’re here), then Kayla Aimee’s would be one you would love.  She writes all about her life as a mom to her micro-preemie-turned-sassy-toddler Scarlette, and her writing is like talking to a friend.  She just released her first book last week, a memoir of her family’s uncertain time in the NICU following Scarlette’s birth, and how that time has shaped her and her understanding of her faith.  It is not only a beautiful story of a mother’s love, told through both tears and laughter.  It is also the story of a Father’s love for his children, and His constant presence in our lives, through good times and bad.  I remember when I became a mother, the biggest epiphany I had was my greater understanding of God’s love for me mirrored in my love for my own child.  I feel like that’s something Kayla writes about too.  AND…it’s on sale through Amazon right now! Pick up a copy <a href=”here

Life Changing

Y’all.  I can’t even find the words to verbalize how much this new job has changed the game for me.  It’s like I’m a whole new person.  I get up in the morning and I get ready, and I get Jake ready, and we aren’t rushing out the door.  When I get home, his dad has already picked him up, and we get to eat dinner together and I’m not too exhausted to play with him.  Then we do bath time and snuggles, and he’s in bed by 8:30.  And then, I actually get to hang out with my husband!  And I’m off every. Single. Sunday.  All of them! It’s awesome!

I just really wanted to share how it was going with y’all because it’s such a testimony to me. I was trying to do it my way and I was hitting a brick wall. But when I finally handed it over to God (like, really handed it over), He answered almost immediately.  It’s such a blessing for us.

Lazy Summer Days

We have been away for a few days, enjoying a much needed vacation.  It was such a blessing to see my son enjoy the beach.  I cannot count the number of times I held back tears because of the bittersweet beauty of it all.  His little toes in the sand and surf, his little hands splashing in the pool, and his love for our family.  He is more than I could ever have hoped for.  Sometimes, in the monotony of our hustle and bustle, I forget.  I forget how the world is still so full of wonder for him.  I forget to treasure each moment.  But this trip reminded me.  “Behold, children are a gift from the Lord.”

God’s Plans…

… Are bigger than ours.  I am reminding myself of this as I step out blindly in faith.  I’m leaving the only real job I’ve ever had with coworkers that I LOVE (but with hours I hate), trying to follow a plan that I believe is God’s will for my life.

Let me start at the beginning.  A few weeks ago, I was completely spent.  I was physically and emotionally drained.  When Jake laid down for a nap, I told my husband I was going to pick up a quick easy dinner and I was going ALONE.  In the car, I found myself praying aloud.  “I have no idea what I’m doing with my life.  My plans aren’t working.  Please just show me what I’m supposed to do, not my will, but Yours.”  Just acknowledging my own failures out loud was somehow freeing, a little weight lifted.
A few hours later, my brother-in-law tagged me in a Facebook post about a job opening.  I applied.  Within the week, I had an interview set up.  I have applied and interviewed for a LOT of jobs over the past 2 years, but haven’t really been moved that any of them were the right fit.  I turned it over to the Lord.  “Not my will, but Yours.” 

Another week or so went by, and I got the job offer.  Better schedule, including being off EVERY Sunday, but a pretty drastic pay cut.  Hubs was unsure, and, honestly, so was I.  We decided to think and pray about it.  On our way to church (where we hadn’t been in over a month), I joked that maybe the sermon would be about how to make good decisions.  AND IT WAS.  Y’all, it actually was.  It was about following God’s plan, and Him providing for your needs when you do.

Over the next few days, we talked and prayed and argued.  With a heart for motherhood, I know that no full time job is going to give me what I want most. But we have bills to pay, and I can’t leave my husband hanging, having to work 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet.  Finally, we decided for me to take the new job (and roughly 1/3 salary cut -eek!).  Then we decided to reevaluate in 6 months. So here we go.  I start my new job June 15, and while I’m absolutely terrified, I have the peace that this plan is bigger than I am, and I’m not alone.  “Not my will, but Yours.”

Choices

Today at church, the preacher spoke about choices.  It was kind of perfect timing because we are working our way through some choices in our family right now.  We talked about how sometimes God puts us in a crappy situation to teach us, and how sometimes that’s when our faith grows the most.  Also, he talked about how sometimes, you need to listen to God’s plan rather than your own, and when you do, He will fill in the blanks that you can’t figure out. While we pray and marinate on that wisdom at our home, I hope it rings true for you as well.

An Easter Celebration

Saturday we began our celebration of the Resurrection by hosting a lunch and Easter egg hunt with my in-laws. We try to be very intentional with certain things in our home, and Easter is one of those things. We don’t really do the Easter bunny in our home, but we do still give Jake an Easter basket.  Inside were stickers, bubbles, some bath toys, a stuffed lamb, and two faith-based children’s’ books.

 Food and decorations were kept super simple, because with work and a toddler, getting the house clean was a feat. I made a few quick chalkboards, and bought a cheap flower bouquet from the grocery store. Food was pulled pork sandwiches, cole slaw, potato salad, green beans, baked beans, and broccoli rice casserole. We also had a birthday cake my mother-in-law made for me. 

 After filling our bellies on barbecue, we headed out to the yard for egg hunting. My mother-in-law filled the eggs with candy, which we don’t allow Jake to have, but he enjoyed collecting them anyway. The pollen has been unbearably bad here this week, so we didn’t let him play outside too terribly long, but he still managed to get a bit too much sun.

We ended the night by visiting my parents, and having a dance party – this kid has got some moves!  Our bedtime story was the story of the crucifixion on our YouVersion Bible for Kids app.  Overall, a great day of celebrating!

Sunday Scripture

Here’s a little scriptural equation for you. We talked about this last week at church. If God is love (1 John 4:8), and love is patient and kind, does not envy or boast, is not self-seeking or easily angered, does not keep record of wrongs, rejoices in truth, always protects, hopes, and trusts (1 Cor 13 4-7), then we can also say all those things about God’s character. And my favorite part? 1 Cor 13:8 “Love never fails.” And neither does God.