A Spark Ignites.

A new year is upon us and the feeling of renewed hope is in the air. The buzz, the energy, the anticipation of what the new year will bring can create a spark. It can ignite the hopes & dreams that got buried by life, but still find ways to break through and remind you of what your purpose in this life is.

Each year I feel this spark. But I don’t always act on it.

My hope is that this year is different. That I don’t just meet that spark half way, but that I embrace it and allow it to change me in ways I’ve never been changed before. But before we can allow such great change to happen, we must first learn to let go…

-Of the fears that keep us from reaching our full potential.

-Of the busyness that life can bring if we let it.

-Of the noise in this world telling us we’re not worthy.

-Of the worry that keeps us at a stand still.

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of living my life half way. I want to release it all so that I can fully experience the beauty of this life. It’s going to be a daily choice and hard work. But with consistent action, character change can happen.

-No longer will I let the fear of failure keep me from acting on the work God has called me to do.

-No longer will I let life get so busy that I don’t have the time and space to find peace, joy and happiness in all of my days.

-No longer will I allow the noise of this world keep me from feeling worthy.

-No longer will I allow worry to steal my days and hold me captive.

2017 was a year of rest and refining which I so desperately needed…

But 2018 will be the year of great change. Change to my character, to my days & to my calling. I long to be a person who exudes peace. I long to live my days with new eyes and see the beauty that each day holds. I long to make strides in the work God has called me to do.

I share all of this with you in hopes that it will ignite that spark in you and to keep myself accountable. My prayer is that this coming year will bring you much joy and happiness, seeing that spark ignite a fire in you and your life. Thank you for being a part of this journey with me and for allowing me to share my heart with you…

Cheers to 2018!!

XOXO,

~P

 

 

 

Allowing yourself to feel.

At the beginning of this year I vowed that this year would be a year of rest. I was in desperate need of less distraction and more time to be present. But what I didn’t realize is that with this change I’d experience so much emotion bubbling to the surface. Emotions that I pushed deep down as I moved through the busyness of life, never allowing myself to feel.

And now that I’m more present & still, I can feel the emotions so deeply.

I’m grateful for this life I’ve been given and often still can’t believe I’m living my dream of becoming a momma. But, if I’m honest, I have to admit that I had no idea it would be as challenging as it has been over the last year.

I had no idea that because I’m an introvert, the constant noise and demands of my children would leave me feeling so depleted at the end of the day. I didn’t realize how easy it would be to “lose myself” in the busyness of taking care of my kiddos. I didn’t know that I would yearn for more meaning and connection.

I found myself in this place of deep shame for my feelings…I wanted this from the deepest part of my soul, so shouldn’t I feel nothing but joy?

Then something happened. I finally gave into my feelings. I shared them with my husband and with God. I realized that it’s ok to feel this way. It doesn’t make me a bad mom. It makes me real and vulnerable. Something I hope to teach my children to be.

And now that I’ve released those feelings and allowed myself to feel them. I’ve found understanding and a new perspective. I’ve found joy.

I’m still a work in progress and probably always will be, but I’m seeing my life in a new light.

I’m learning that I need to take breaks from the noise, because when I do it reminds me how grateful I am for those tiny voices calling me “mommy” one hundred times a day.

I’m making more time for the things that bring me life and remind me of who I am outside of being a momma.

And I’m making relationships more of a priority in my life, so the loneliness I’ve felt over this past year doesn’t keep me from truly enjoying the beauty that’s right in front of me.

Yes, it’s ok to feel your emotions, even when it hurts. But, we must also realize it’s up to us to make the choice to change. To do the things we know will allow us to live in joy, peace & gratefulness the rest of ours days…

XOXO,

~P

The momma he needs me to be

Those first few years I thought I had it down. I knew your cries and what they meant. I could tell when you were sleepy or just needed some extra cuddles. You were my sidekick and my dream come true. But then you turned three and my whole world turned upside down.

No longer were we in sync the way we once were.

Your rollercoaster ride of emotions kept me guessing and failing at how to mother you best. It was also a season of learning how to share myself with you and your baby sister, something I’m still learning today. Months went by and the fear in my heart crept in.

I worried that our constant battles would create a barrier between us. I felt pain for the once happy days now turning into days of time outs, discipline & tears. This was not what I wanted for our days. I needed to find a way to be the momma you needed me to be.

I reached my breaking point and what came with it was clarity, peace & understanding.

I thought that what you needed most was structure, but really all you needed was love. Yes, you need me to teach you right from wrong, but you also need a momma who’s gentle. You are one stubborn, strong-willed little boy but what I’ve learned is you can’t fight stubbornness with stubbornness. Just love.

So here we are, months later and so much better. Yes, we still have our days when I’ve had little sleep or you’re just in a mood. But knowing now what I know allows me to let go of the frustration and need for control, and in it’s place I embrace you in my arms and tell you that I love you. No longer will our days be filled with the constant tug & pull.

You are worth this refining of my heart & soul sweet boy.

I will never stop trying and learning how to be the momma you need me to be. Because in the end I know I will be a better for it.

XOXO,

Momma

The fog has lifted.

The day I became a momma to two, was the day my heart became complete. I remember daydreaming of what life would look like with two little miracles at home. My dream had come true and I was on cloud nine.

Those first few weeks were magic.

Jase was adapting well to the addition of his new little sister and I felt a sense of peace this second time around. Our days revolved around feeding, naps, playing and reading books. I was officially a stay at home momma and life was good!

But before long, I started to feel the heaviness of all that was on my plate.  Keeping up with my household duties, trying to get my business up and running, remembering to give my hubby love & attention and take care of my kiddos, all while dealing with the toddler tantrums and a baby that wanted to be attached to my hip at all times was no easy task.

I felt drained and unsure of my ability to love on these babies the way I had always dreamed of.

Sleep deprivation quickly took over sending my nerves and emotions into a tailspin. Days would go by where I kept trying to create the happy days that I had dreamed of, but without fail everything would start to unravel. Often I’d find myself curled up with my kiddos crying right along with them.

I felt like a horrible momma, not only because I felt I was failing my babies but also because of all I had gone through to get here. I was supposed to be able to handle this. I was grateful for where I was and loved my babies in a fierce way, but just couldn’t seem to find the happiness in my days. This was just too much.

I felt like I’d never get through this season. The fog was too thick for me to see the horizon ahead.

Then, a shift happened. It wasn’t something I noticed right away, but over time Savi started to sleep through the night and Jase was no longer swinging from one emotion to the next. Our days were starting to feel lighter, more peaceful.

With the addition of better sleep, moments of quiet in the mornings and the ability to focus on myself, no longer did I feel the heaviness of our days. There was less crying and emotions running on high. And in their place, happiness & joy.

Not every day is perfect, but the fog has lifted and for that I am grateful.

I think sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in our day to day. To see the heaviness that life can bring and feel like we’ll never see the lightness in our days again. But if we remember that each step is just a season, preparing us for the next, we can take the season we’re in with a heart of gratitude.

I learned so much in my first year as a momma to two. It was a season of refining and learning that each season has it’s end and some are much easier to handle than others. A season that showed me how to let go and let slower days fill my plate. A season that I now look upon with fondness…messes, threenagers, sleepless nights and all!

If you’re in the thick of your season and the fog is making it hard to see the horizon ahead, hold tight to this: there will be an end and it will get easier. Life is cyclical. The sooner we learned to loosen our grasp, give ourselves grace and love others the best that we can, the sooner we’ll see the beauty in even the hardest of seasons.

XOXO,

~P

To the mom living in “Survival Mode”…

I see you over there with one screaming kiddo on your hip, while you’re trying so desperately to keep the other one from losing it right in the middle of the store. Finally you make it out…you sigh, you lose your patience, you react. Survival Mode.

My dear friend, it doesn’t have to be this way.

I’m not sure how we’ve suddenly as mommas gotten to this place of merely surviving. With to-do lists a mile long, kids to tote here and there, a house to keep up with, a husband to make time for and friends we barely speak to. Oh and to top it off, we feel this pit in our stomach like there’s still something we should be doing with our lives…we were made for more, weren’t we?

I know this because I lived it.

It’s this vicious cycle that keeps you trapped in reaction mode. Feeling out of control of your own life, barely able to come up for air. You feel pulled in a million different directions. Just trying to survive.

But what if we found another way of living?

What if we said no to trying to “do it all” and yes to slow, simple lives? What if we actually lived our lives versus just trying to survive them? Sounds impossible doesn’t it? I thought so too…but the thing is, we have the choice. It is our lives after all. So what needs to happen in order to live and not just survive?

Now don’t get me wrong, some days call for living in moments of “survival”, kids are incredibly unpredictable…am I right?! But when we learn to let go of trying to do everything and just focus in what God has called us to do, life instantly gets simpler.

I know you want more for your life, and you deserve it too.

So my friend, what needs to give? What can you let go of to make space in your life to be more proactive verses reactive? What will bring peace to your days and moments of pure joy?

Is it setting limits on how many days you will be on-the-go? Or maybe you feel called to do something, but know deep down this is not the season to give it your all? Or perhaps you ask for help with cleaning your house, or watching the kids so you can shop in peace?

I’m not sure what the answer is for you, but I do know it’s there if you look hard enough.

There is a life outside of survival mode. And it’s filled with hours that require nothing of you except to enjoy your life. To get outside and read a book while your kiddos play. Or cuddle up with them on the couch while watching a movie.

It’s days where you can let your heart lead you where to go next. To actually listen to your body and give it rest when it needs it. To slow down and really take in this season that passes us by oh so quickly.

My hope is that you take the time to find what needs to give in your life.

To let go and see the beauty that’s right in front of you. To actually come up for air, slow down and learn the art of saying no. Because after all…

Survival mode doesn’t have to be your only mode.

XOXO,

~P

 

Right in Front of Me

This season of motherhood, you know the one with little people running about? Well, I guess you could say I’m in the depths of that season. I mean right smack dab in the middle. The pull of a threenager that constantly wants to tell you about all of the things he dreams up in his curious little mind and a toddler that’s demanding your assistance at every turn.

I guess you could say I’ve come along way over the last year (you can read about it HERE & HERE), but I’m still human. And all too often I still find myself with my head down, moving from one task to another, only to miss what’s right in front of me.

But the thing is, that is not how I want to live my days…

As much as I hate to admit it, I still fall into that trap from time to time of letting the day dictate my actions. The difference is now I’m able to see when this is happening much sooner than before. I’m able to take a step back, breath in deep and take control.

Yes, my children take up a lot of my time and attention. Between the messes they make, the fighting over toys and needing to go potty (NOW!) when I’m in the middle of changing a diaper can leave me feeling like I can barely come up for air. But that doesn’t mean I have to move through these tasks with my head down just trying to survive.

I can look up, see the beauty right in front of me and soak it al in…

The messes, they’re reminders that two tiny humans played and had a really great time without a care in the world. Even if it was 20 min after I finished mopping.

Or the fighting over toys, is seeing two siblings learning to coexist with one another. Building a relationship with one another that they will keep for the rest of their lives.

And the needing to go potty at the most inopportune time? It’s a feeling of still being needing in this growing up way-too-fast little boys life. When all too often he no longer needs mommies help. 

I’m slowly but surely learning to let go of my need to just get through…

And in it’s place I’m learning to see what’s right in front of me. To slow down. To enjoy right where I am and leave the rest behind. My need for control and feeling accomplished is drifting away to make room for the beauty that life holds.

“Life can happen to you or you can make life happen.” I’ve heard that saying many times in my life, but it’s never rang more true than it does in this season. With two tiny humans and so many demands, I can easily let life happen to me, but then what will I miss if I do? So instead…

I’m choosing to make life happen.

When I’m old and grey, I want to look back on this season of life with a fondness that only comes when I’m present and see the beauty right in front of me. I don’t want to think of this season as just “surviving”, but a season of “thriving”.

I’m still a work in progress and I may never be done. But I’m so grateful for the ability to have a fresh start each and every day…

XOXO,

~P

Slower days, fuller hearts

One year ago, I was living a life that didn’t allow me to be present. Every minute was accounted for with taking care of my kiddos, my husband & my business. I would move from task to task without actually paying attention to my life and everything in it. This needed to change.

I was completely overwhelmed, not knowing how to get to a place of being present & content. Everything on my plate seemed important, so how was I to decide what needed to give in order for me to live my best life?

It’s been a slow process of refining, but I’m finally in a place where being present is becoming my reality.

I’ve realized that I don’t need to “keep up” with the rest of the world. I can go at my pace. I can build my business in baby steps and in God’s timing.  I can let my house go a little bit if it allows for more time to play with my kiddos. I can make space in my day for resting and doing the things I enjoy.

Life is not meant to be lived checking off our to-do lists in order to feel productive. It’s meant to cultivate beauty in our lives and flourish in our relationships. It’s meant to be spent intentionally and with purpose. God’s purpose.

As soon as I realized that I had the power to change my life, the weight drifted off my shoulders and peace took it’s place.

My days are much slower now. Many of our hours are filled with whatever our hearts desire. So we play outside. We blow bubbles. We play in the water. I read my books. I play my guitar. We listen to music (always gotta have music!). We meet with friends. We live in the present.

Not every day is perfect, this is life with two young children of course! But most of my days are filled with the peace I so desperately desired. My mind is clear and free to take in the beauty that this life brings. I see my children’s faces with so much detail they’ve become etched in my memory. I’m truly soaking in this life. Breathing in the air. Noticing the trees and the flowers in bloom. I’m living MY life.

So how did I get here?

  • I wrote down the things in my life that absolutely need to get done as well as the things that I want to be a part of my daily life.
  • I looked at my calendar and figured out where each of these will fit best allowing for plenty of time in between tasks.
  • I was realistic about what needs to get done and when.
  • I set boundaries for work, cleaning the house, time with friends etc…
  • I physically placed these items on the calendar and set reminders so that I don’t get back to that place of overwhelm.
  • And I gave myself LOTS of GRACE…

Mom life is a beautiful life, but can become chaotic if you let it. Take control of your life, live each moment to it’s fullest and know that it’s ok to go at your pace. You got this momma!

XOXO,

~P