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Saturday, July 29, 2017

Taking a Break

I'm popping in to say hi and to let you know, that for the month of August, I have decided to take a break from all social media and blogging.

I have been feeling this need to take a break for awhile, but have been ignoring it. I don't know if it was fear of missing out or falling behind, but I have come to the point where I realized that it just doesn't matter!! My world is not going to end and Instagram and Facebook are not going anywhere.

Sometimes you just need to unplug and give yourself a rest. It's nice to make connections and build relationships on social media but you need to make sure that your family and close friends are not getting your second best. Social media can be very useful and inspiring but we have to be careful that we aren't missing out on what is right in front of us in our own homes!!

I will be back in September before I start back to work and I know that will be here before I know it.

I have left you with a fun freebie for August and I hope you have a good one!



Many Blessings,




Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Real Life: Letting Go of Perfection Part 2

In my last post I talked about letting go of perfection and how hard it can be. For most of us that struggle with this, it is not something we just decided to try for a season. The idea of perfection is something that has been ingrained in us, probably starting at a young age. Therefore, it makes it that much harder to let go and change our ways!

                              

Today I want to share with you a few ways, that might help you, in taking the steps you need to let go of perfection. 

The first thing I did was make a declaration. When we struggle with something, we need to capture it, confess it, and replace it with the truth....

I recognize my need for perfection in certain areas of my life. I confess that it is wrong and that I need to change. It's robbing me of joy and many other precious moments in my life, and in the end I am never satisfied. I believe the truth, that it is ok to not get everything done on my to-do list. It is ok if something doesn't turn out exactly as I planned. It's ok to let things go for the sake of being present with the ones I love. There is always tomorrow. I realize that this is something that I will have to work at everyday, but through His strength, I know that it is possible. 

I try to go through and read this at least once a week to help remind myself of these truths. 

The second thing, that I think is very important, is to start your day off in prayer and in the Word. This really helps me a lot. I usually pick a daily devotional to do and then I try to concentrate on a scripture verse from that days message. Another thing you can do, if you aren't a very spiritual person, is spend the first 5 minutes of the day alone, quieting your thoughts, maybe with a cup of coffee or tea. I like to sit outside, when it's nice, listen to the sounds and take in the beauty around me.

Another thing that really helps me is something that I only recently started to do. When I plan out my week or day, I try to only put 3 or 4 things, at the most, on my to-do list. I am trying to think more realistically. I always overwhelm myself by putting way too many things on my list and then when I don't get them all done, I am frustrated and disappointed with myself. I like to think of what I can really get done in one day while still leaving time for my family and doing things with them.

Finally, the last thing and the hardest, but I know that it helps.....

Take a break from all social media!! No Instagram, no Facebook, no Twitter or Pinterest. Half of the reason we reach for perfection, is because of what we see out there on social media. Then we start comparing our lives and what we do to others. So much of what is portrayed on the internet isn't real life. What we read and see is, 

I can do everything, be everywhere, have the best behaved kids, keep my house perfectly clean and styled, make the perfect home cooked meals, looking fabulous while doing it, and never make mistakes. 

Whew!! That's a lot. I don't know about you, but this is far from what my actual life is even though I get caught up trying to act like it is. Friends, it's not real, and perfection is not attainable. Plus, we don't know what is going on behind the scenes for those that we think have perfect lives. 

While reading, Present Over Perfect, I came to the chapter where Shauna talks about legacy, the end of life, and regret. This is her response,

"I don't want to miss the actual fabric of the interior of my life and the beautiful children growing up right this second in my own home, because I'm working to please people somewhere out there."

She hit the nail on the head with that one. I was thinking it and she wrote it. The legacy I want to leave behind is not one that is marked with striving for perfection or people pleasing. I want it to be about serving my family and friends out of love for Christ, being present in every moment, and for having the courage to start over and not give up when things aren't perfect.

How about you?

Many Blessings,


Saturday, July 15, 2017

Real Life: Letting Go of Perfection




Enough is Enough

I have hit that point in my life where I need to make a change before it's too late. 

My name is Erin, and I am a recovering perfectionist! 

For too long I have run around waving that flag, (of perfection, not surrender) trying to do it all and wanting everything to be perfect, and I have had enough. 

I can honestly say, I am at that point where I have finally realized, perfect is a goal I will never achieve, and to be honest, I think I have known this for quite some time. I have just been struggling to let it go. You see, God gave us this thing called, free will, which means we have the choice, everyday, to choose the things that we are going to do that will consume our time. We can create to-do lists that are miles long, try to cram more hours in a day, and continuously strive and work for things that are not our purpose. And God will allow us to operate this way for awhile, until we finally realize, no matter what the plans we have in our heart, His purpose will prevail. The faster we realize this, the better off we are. I wish I could say that I realized this a lot sooner, it would have saved me a lot of worry and stress, but the flesh is weak, and that desire to prove myself and be good at something is strong. 

Yet not what I will, but what You will. -Mark 14:36 

This has been my go to verse for awhile now, and in some areas of my life I can say that I do apply this, but that's not how it should be. I can't just pick and choose what's best for me. I need to surrender it all. Every plan, every desire and dream, every need and want, I need to let go of it all and surrender control.

I started reading this book Present Over Perfect, by Shauna Neiquest. This is when I finally stopped resisting the need to change my lifestyle. She starts off one of the chapters with a famous quote by F. Scott Fitzgerald, "I hope you live a life you are proud of and if you find that you are not, I hope you find the strength to start over again". I am not saying that I am not proud of the life I have lived so far. I am simply not proud that I let perfection play such big part. Like any other crossroad in my life, God has ultimately been the deciding factor guiding me down the right path, helping to make the necessary changes before it's too late. The beauty of it all, is that everyday is chance to start over. It's really amazing when you finally realize this. Given our free will, and with the strength God gives, we can hit the restart button at any time.

So, here I am. This time waving the white flag of surrender, because I know that this is not the life God intended for me. I know that this is going to be hard and I am going to have to work to let things go daily, but I am ready for it. I have had a taste of what it's like to not care about getting it all done. I have learned how to say no to more stuff and be present in the moment. I know that perfection is not real life. I am learning everyday what I can do and how to let go of what I can't.  There will be more time to do other things that I enjoy later on, but I am currently missing out on the most important things right in front of me. It's going to be a journey and I am only at the beginning, but I made the choice and I am sticking to it. Present over perfect!

Be sure to check back next week for the second part of, Letting Go of Perfection. I will be sharing with you the many ways that we can do this and live a less stressed, more joyful life. 

Many Blessings,

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

First Edition is Here!!

Happy first day of Summer! Today was the first day of Summer break for me! I have 75 glorious days off and I plan to make the most out of each and every day!

I have been working very hard to bring you the first edition of my newsletter, 'The Simple Life'. I really enjoyed creating this for you and I hope that you will enjoy it too. Just click the picture below to download your copy!!




And stay tuned for new photos of my home to be add very soon! I am so excited for this Summer and all that is in store!!

Many Blessings,


Friday, June 16, 2017

What I Learned This Season: Spring


Only 2 more school days left and then it's Summer!! I am back again for another post of 'What I Learned this Season'. I definitely think I learned a lot this Spring, but more than that, I feel myself growing in a lot of ways, spiritually, and it just feels so amazing! I thought I would do this one a little different and share with you in one-liners & quotes, just for fun! So, in no particular order, here is what I learned this season......

1. The days are long, but the years are short. Make every moment count, because before you know it, the time will be gone!


2. Being content means, wanting what you already have, not having whatever you want!

3. Wisdom and humility are a package deal. Those who have great wisdom have experienced great humility. #lifegoal

4. Sometimes our lives feel like they are spinning out of control. In our hearts we scream, 'this is not the way I imagined it', but even when our plans don't seem to match God's path, we can still count on His purpose. Can I get an Amen?!!

5. "The influence of a good teacher can never be erased". I received this quote in a beautiful frame with such a sweet note from one of my student's. It made me cry, because as a speech language pathologist, a lot of times, I get over looked. It is nice to receive stuff like this, once in awhile, to remind me why I chose this profession.

6. Just because you have a lot of dietary restrictions, doesn't mean you still can't have fun. Try these amazing treats! They are delicious and perfect for that sweetness you crave, but you don't have to feel guilty about it!

 

7. "Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends".  -John 15:13 What a great example of what true friendship really means, than the story of David and Jonathan. I knew at one point in my life, that certain relationships would not last, and would probably drift apart, but I have no hard feelings about it. It just makes me so grateful for those few who have stuck by me from the beginning and will go with me till the end.

8. "I must have flowers always & always". -Claude Monet 
It turns out, that I am better at gardening than I thought. Most of the time I have had bad luck with flowers and plants, but when you do a little research and put in some effort, you can grow some awesome stuff, and really enjoy it too. I can't wait to plant some bulbs and trees in the fall!!



9. Anyone can wear red lipstick, you just have to find the right shade. -Jess Connolly

                                                   

10. Chillin' in the car they spent all day waxin'
         Leanin' to the side but you can't spead through
         Two miles an hour so everybody sees you
         There's an air of love and of happiness
         And this is the Fresh Prince's new defintion' of summer madness..
         Summer, Summer, Summertime.
         Time to sit back and unwind!  -DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince (aka Will Smith)

I am so ready for Summer and I hope you are too!

Many Blessings,


Monday, June 12, 2017

A Year in Photos

In 2016 I decided that I want to do keep a log on my son for that whole year, in photos. I took a photo  of him every week (or at least I tried, lol) and it is so cool to see him change over the year. I think he definitely looks older when I look at the first few pictures compared to the last one at Christmas! I am going to create a cute little journal for all of the pictures to look back on when he is older.






Since I enjoyed doing this so much. I had an idea to do something similar for this Summer. I recently just purchased the Instax Mini 9 Camera. I love it so much!! I have a very old polaroid camera that still works and I just love these kinds of pictures. They are so fun! Plus, my son loves that the photo comes out of the camera right away.

So if you are look for a fun way to document your Summer, why not do it with photos. There is a little space on the bottom for you to write the date or a little message too!! Only 9 more days till the first day of Summer! I can't wait!

Many Blessings,

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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

A Trip Down Memory Lane

I hope that you all had a wonderful Memorial Day. I certainly enjoyed the three day weekend with my friends and family. I am so ready for Summer!!

I started my blog about two and half years ago, when my son was a little over a year old. I honestly can't believe that it has been that long already. I have learned so much during that time and I definitely feel that I have grown, not just as a writer, but in many different ways. I thought that it would be fun to go back and take a look through all of my posts that I have written since day one and share a few of my favorites. It was neat to see how my interests have changed and what stayed the same.

So in no particular order, here are my favorite posts.....

The Story of Hope

Two Pink Lines
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A Note of Encouragement 

Advice I Need to Take Myself

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Something Fun 

A Year of Pinterest Projects


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On Being Real
The One Goal I Didn't Want People to Know 


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The Important Stuff

The Simple Life


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A Freebie for You
How to Get Unstuck


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My First Big Project
A Monthly Devotional

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My Favorite Series
Creating Your Nest


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A Writing Challenge
31 Days of Home Projects
 
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My Favorite Link Up

What I Learned This Season


I hope that you enjoy these posts as much as I enjoyed putting them together!! 

Many Blessings,




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