The Bedrock Of Restoration: A Collaborative Insight Of Four Women Living Restored Lives

What a pleasure it was working with these three amazing women!  I hope you enjoy the insight into soul restoration that these women of faith provide, just as much as I did!

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Debbie: Life is a journey, requiring one step at a time. It’s not a race and you can’t outrun the pain that accompanies its hurtful experiences. I’m thankful for the challenging times in my life because it created a deeper relationship and dependence on God.  Those valleys of opposition and obstacles helped me to become more resilient in my faith.  There have been times when I felt so alone in my situation and doubtful about my future. In those moments, God moved, healed, and brought ultimate restoration for my weary soul.

I love the encouragement found in 1 Peter 5:10, “And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”

Restoration for my soul begins with staying in constant communication with Him. His word is pure medicine and brings strength to my fatigued soul. It’s the royal clothing for my vulnerable and exposed heart. Over the years, the greatest gifts that have restored my soul have been meditating on God’s word and spending time in prayer with Him and other believers!

Website: www.radiantfaithministries.com/

Instagram: @radiant_faith_ministries

Facebook: Radiant Faith Ministries

Debbie

Debbie Timney is the founder of Radiant Faith Ministries! Her passion is to help women discover their purpose and be drawn closer to the presence of God. Radiant Faith Ministries has a website and social media that is used as a resource to direct women in how to find answers to questions on various topics such as finding their purpose, calling, and learning how to grow in their faith.

Waynna:  As a continuum of busyness occurs in my life, I find it more and more necessary to call out to Jesus, the Restorer Of Souls. As a mother to three small kids & the constant cleaning & chaos, day-to-day, sends me on an emotional roller coaster that sometimes leaves me feeling lost and empty.  It’s true there are temporary fixes in these moments of vulnerability, however, it’s an opportunity to submit to him.

He promises us in Scripture to restore our souls. For me, that means to reignite my passion and refocus my purpose. Our society speaks often about self-care and I’ve discovered that daily soul restoration is a big part of that.  I find soul restoration happens when I create white space, by removing distractions or taking events off my calendar. I have experienced soul restoration during family getaways in nature. Presently, I find it early in the morning, when the kids are still asleep & my husband’s at work; when I pour myself a hot cup of coffee, open a devotional, and my journal. It’s when I’ve allowed myself the space to hear his voice, heart abandoned, expressing gratitude for the life He’s given me.

You can find me on instagram here:

www.instagram.com/all.graced.up.blog/

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Me. I am a coffee loving, blog writing, mom to three littles & one in Heaven. I am an introvert who loves to binge read other people’s blogs, watch documentaries with my hubby, and eat Trader Joe’s Party Cake. I believe coffee cures & Jesus saves.

Meg: When I think of ‘God restores my soul,’ first it means that I cannot do this on my own. It is only God that moves in such a way, to Him all the glory be given for showing me this tender and loving act. With Him, restoration of my soul is possible. It is all Him.

The other night I went out with a group of girlfriends and we openly discussed struggles, honest feelings, and past hard situations with God. The common conclusion of those hard times was that they were still good. Hearing each of my friends clearly state that encourages me that it is only God who can, and does, as mentioned several times in His Word, indeed restore one’s soul.

When I read verses about restore, or restoring my soul, I think back on the darker times in life. Instead of being bitter and angry towards those harder periods I walked through, He changed my perspective and clarified that those times were for a purpose; the only conclusion is that God had restored my soul! 

My main social media is my Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/essentiallymeghenning/

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I’m Meg who is deeply rooted in what Jesus’ love for me means, a wife of a coach and together we have a boy and girl. I am a small business essential oil owner, who loves connecting with friends and would love to live on the beach some day.

Ashley: I can sum up God restoring my soul with one word: joy!  I’m currently in a season of difficult life circumstances that have tempted me to feel disappointed in God; but I’ve also seen God use this hardship to bring me to a greater level of joy in Him. Though this season is not desirable, it is producing desirable fruit as God works lasting, restorative joy in my life that no person or circumstance can take away. Take heart, if God has allowed difficulty in your life, He has also ordained restoration for you!

There are many ways to seek restorative joy but one truth has made a lasting impression on me: joyis a fruit of the Spirit. We cannot conjure it up or fabricate it; it must grow.

Like fruit on a tree, it takes time and the changing of seasons to grow and to ripen.The fruit of the Spirit is the same: by being faithful in all seasons our joy will naturally grow and ripen until it is no longer shaken by the things of this world. Abiding in Christ is what gives us His unshakable and restorative joy!

My life in squares: www.instagram.com/everydayashleyj/

Website: www.reverbfaith.com

Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley! I’m a wife, mom, and debtor to grace seeking to pay it forward. I love community so join me on this crazy journey of doing life together, the good, the bad, and the ugly. My life is far from perfect, but it is real, so I hope you find encouragement no matter where you are on your own journey.

These woman have encouraged my faith journey & it was a pleasure to work with them!  I hope these stories of God working today, in our lives, encourages you too.

With faith & coffee,

Waynna

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Five Basic Money Saving Tips From a Stay At Home Mom

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It’s not easy living off of one income. To be honest, it takes a lot of faith & prayer, strategic planning & hard work, on all accounts. There are a lot times when I have to explain the kids why we can’t get happy meals or go to see a flick, or whatever ‘extras’ don’t make sense in the budget for the week.

We’ve learned a lot from our mistakes & I’m hoping our story encourages yours.

First, I want to clear the air. A lot of people tell me how lucky I am to stay at home with my kids. How they wish they could stay home like me. What I don’t talk enough about is the sacrifice that’s involved. It’s not lost on me that I’m one of the lucky ones #blessedmama. But it’s also not lost on me that we’ve made lots of sacrifices along the way.  Like giving up my career, relocating to a new city away from family & into a tiny house.  With that we have lowered our rent, have lower utility bills & less upkeep.  Some of it was circumstance that led us here but this was also something we both had to agree on.  There were many late night conversations, a lot of brainstorming & even some arguments.

Overall, I’m extremely grateful for my hard working husband & God’s wisdom & direction.  Our family means our standards & goals, which may look completely different from yours.

If you are wanting to stay home & are unsure how to get started, I suggest sitting down as a family & deciding what your family goals are.  If this is not the reality for you, I say pray & grow where you’re planted.  Sometimes it’s unclear why God has us in certain places, at certain seasons but you may be a blessing to a company or a co-worker.  I like that scripture that says, Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as if working for the Lord.  Colossians 3:23.

I’m extremely grateful that I live in a country with an abundance & I have the ability to earn money blogging while my kids play at my feet.

I recently had the opportunity to guest post on the Tried and True Mom Jobs blog, here I share some more resourceful tips on how we survive off of one income. You may find this article useful as well & you can find it here.

Money saving tip #1, try driving less. When I worked I didn’t have any other choice but to pay for car maintenance, gas & higher car insurance premiums because I had to commute to and from work. When I first started staying home I felt the need to have my kids at every other story time & play date possible. After story time, I’d find myself at the store or running an errand & then stopping to get the kids happy meals because hello, no one wants to hear the screams of a hungry toddler.

I did the math & realized I could save about $20/week in gas (or more), plus the cost of eating out, if I stayed home a few days a week.  I’m an introvert so this is no problem for me, ha!  But the kids have school & activities so not realistic to stay home all day, every day.

We try & walk to the park to save gas & get some exercise. Also, the kids like the adventure. I try & explain to them that by walking we save money & it’s better for the environment.

Money saving tip #2, don’t go to Target.  I’ve saved about $500 in the last few months by not going to Target.  Yes, that’s right, $500. It’s my fault for overspending when I’m there, but it wasn’t that I was doing it on purpose, I really thought I was buying things we needed.  After staying away, it was obvious that my kids could actually survive without juice boxes, goldfish & fruit snacks.  First world problems, sigh.

Money savings tip #3, when it comes to shopping, get Amazon Prime.I know what you’re thinking, you’re crazy.  Let me convince you otherwise.  You can get pretty much anything you need on Amazon, heck you can buy cars & even a tiny house. This can be bad if you’re a shopper, but good because it alleviates going to different stores.  Hello, gas money.   Also, you avoid spending extra money on things your kids just had to have, a new nail polish color or that bag of popcorn you worked up an appetite for, cause shopping.   In the end, you can leave your Amazon cart alone overnight & come back with a fresh set of eyes in the morning.  You’d be surprised at how your emotions shift away from things you thought you just had to have.

It’s also a really good platform to buy gifts.  Why?  You can have the gift shipped directly to your friend or family member at no cost to either of you, if you’re a prime member.  This works extremely well with family that lives out of state, or even local friends & family.  We can’t always make every event & it’s nice to know that I won’t have to sit on their gift until I see them again.  Amazon also has gift registries now.

The ultimate benefit is that I can shop online, while sticking to our budget, in the comfort of my own home.

If you use their subscribe & save feature, you can add 5 items to your monthly delivery & save 20% per item!!  You can also choose to space your shipments out, like I have hand soap shipped every 2 months.  

Amazon brands are great quality & have competitive pricing.

We use these wipes.

This toilet paper.

These paper towels.

Money saving tip #4 // food.   I see it everywhere and hear it often, having a meal plan & going to the store with a list are mandatory when it comes to sticking to your budget & saving money.  While you’re writing your list & plan, try to incorporate the same items into different meals. We love rice & beans & think they’re absolutely life saving at the end of the month when we’ve blown the budget.   We can buy 2 cans of beans for about a dollar each, a bag of rice for about $4 & a bag of chicken for $7. These are rough estimates, but it comes to about $15.  With these options we make burritos, salads, or have nachos & it usually feeds us for the week. L

I’m linking some cost-effective & delicious recipe ideas here.

Tri-Tip Teriyaki Bowls

3 Ingredient Pesto Pasta

Five Kid-Friendly, Healthy Dessert and Snack Recipes

Hummus Bowls

Snack Ideas

Money savings tip #5 // groceries.  Only buy what’s in season & on sale. We started shopping at two different stores recently & it saved us about $200/month. We buy produce at one store & only get what’s on sale & in season. On a good shopping day, I can usually walk out of the store with two full bags of produce for $20. This is when I really strategize before I get there, only get what is on the list & don’t have the kids with me, ha!

Give.  We may not have control over things that come up like having to buy a new tire or pay to have the washing machine fixed, but we can give.  We can give in many different capacities & I think this is a good way to remind ourselves that there are always people with less.

Ibotta is a great way to make happy meal money.  I’ve made almost $5 in the last 2 days just by scanning my receipts.  You can get $10 just for signing up by clicking here.

These are very basic money saving tips & if you have others you’d like to share, please put them in the comments below.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

Disclaimer:  There are affiliate links embedded in this post.  At no cost to you by shopping the images it may result in a small commission to me.  Enjoy!

Tri-Tip Teriyaki Bowls

We all love a healthy(ish) meal idea that comes with a side of quick & easy. As a young, yet growing family it’s important that our kitchen is both a creative atmosphere, but also a space to enjoy life without having to slave over the stove.

I’m all about 15 minute meal ideas & I would love to say this one only took 15 minutes, but my husband cooked the tri-tip via his Traeger grill & used this recipe. Cook a big enough roast & add enough sides & it’ll be sure to feed a big family or have plenty of left overs for another meal creation. If you meal plan your meat, then 15 minute meals are definitely feasible. We got about 3 meals out of LARGE one roast.

I have a couple healthy(ish) meal ideas that can be used round + round, like these 3-ingredient pesto bowls or this chili recipe, both are filling, mostly healthy meal ideas that you can throw into your lunch or dinner plan for the week.

One thing I’ve learned as a mom of three small kids is that after cooking & cleaning up pretty much all day, dinner needs to be a mindless task. Here’s an easy tri-tip dinner recipe that you’re going to want to use at least once a week & pray you have left overs, it’s just that good!

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The hardest part is cooking the meat, once you get past that, the rest is easy peasy. Thankfully my husband preps all of the meat using his Traeger.

We have this one here (click photo to shop – affiliate link) //

We love stalking & stocking up on the meat sales at our favorite grocery store, Stater Bros, also their quality of meat never disappoints.

I try to have the same ingredients available so we can incorporate it into either lunch or dinner, throughout the week. For example, cabbage as pictured here (spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, or romaine are our go-tos), rice, beans or frozen, mixed veggies & then we add a meat. ‘Cause rice + beans are cheap & never disappoint. I made a huge pot of white rice this week & one night we added cilantro, lime, salt & had tri-tip tacos, with garbanzo beans.

My goal as a busy mom is to cut out the stressors, such as lavish meals. I believe another season of life will accommodate detailed recipes.  For now, we’re trying to place focus on enjoying each others’ company while consistently trying to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  Some days we feast on feat & others we nibble on failure but we’re sure the main course is always seasoned with grace.

healthy meals, easy meals

Easy meal ideas for dinner, lunch or meal planning.

How cool are these knives?

What’s better than fresh, new kitchen towels?

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

disclaimer:  affiliate links are included in this post.  any purchases made by clicking the images in this post may result in a small commission to me, at no cost to you.  I appreciate the support!!

5 Ways to Stick to a Healthy Lifestyle

In the past, I’ve been told I look anorexic and too skinny. My mom will often ask me if I’ve been eating. She’s Latina & I’m sure it’s in her cultural DNA to make sure I’m eating plenty enough to sustain my busy #momlife. Either way, it never feels good to have someone make comments about your body & negative body image can come in all shapes & sizes. I’m an advocate of positive self image & believe it’s a lifelong pursuit. It’s grace that has pushed me along.

I’m sharing five ways that help me stay consistent in my quest for health. Grace is the fundamental component here, along with moderation & accountability.

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Stick to water.  I have cut sugar out of my coffee & this has made a ton of difference in my energy levels. I often feel sugary coffee is a temporary mood & energy booster that has more negative effects throughout the day & is not worth the immediate boost, in my opinion. Sugary drinks of any kind have similar effects & I’m finding more satisfaction in plain ‘ol water. Often times I’m one cup of water away from feeling better all around.

Moderation. I try to moderate my sweet tooth by allowing myself a sweet on the weekends. Key word, try. I prefer to bake the goods myself for a few reasons.  One, it’s less expensive & lasts longer.  Two, I feel like I’m enjoying the fruits of my labor. Last, I feel like it’s an activity my kids & I can do together while sharing memories & learning.

Here’s a healthier, protein packed dessert option.
Or this cherry cake option & you really could have some fun & substitute any kind of berry.

Here are some healthier dessert/snack options.

I say, have fun with it!!

Get active & at the same time ask yourself if you’re doing too much. When I’m active I’m more likely to eat better because I feel better all around.  When I eat bad, my gym sessions or walking the kids to the park don’t go very well, there’s almost a cohesive effect.

When I have too much on my calendar, I’m probably not eating at home & I’m probably not out walking. My overactivity often results in my inactivity towards my health goals. But my too much may look different than your too much. So the standard would be your own.

Surround yourself with positivity.   When I’m feeling sad or lonely, it’s easier for me to fall into a trap of eating poorly & staying indoors.  I recently had to stop following almost every account on instagram because their lifestyles were so different than mine, yet I found myself wanting to be like ‘them’. I started comparing myself & wondering why my life looked so different than theirs. Almost like they were better than me.  In the end it’s because our goals are different, lifestyles & experiences, all different. Not better or worse, just different.

Set goals. These don’t have to be big, or visual goals. Like losing weight, no, rather self-care goals, like reading a book or taking a walk. I like to consider mine small, attainable, realistic goals. These in the end can make a big difference.  In my busy season of mom life sometimes ‘drink water & eat’ is all I can comprehend.

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I homeschool, have three kids 6 & under to feed & care for, I’ve taken up blogging, & I have a husband.  I often forget to care for myself, until I get sick & the entire clan suffers.  With that being said, setting small health goals is a great reminder that I’m here & I matter.

I often ask myself what I want for my life. The answer always leads back to legacy. A legacy of someone who didn’t let the opinions & expectations of others weigh her down, free of comparison & discontent. Someone who fought hard for her family & her health. Someone that journeyed this life knowing where her soul was headed. Confident in who she was because of who made her, with purpose, on purpose.

Charm is deceptive & beauty if fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in me. John 15:4

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

Disclaimer, affiliate links are embedded into this post. Any purchases made by clicking the links in this post, may result in a small commission to me. Also, I am not a dietician, a therapist, or a health professional. All recommendations are my own & have been derived from past experiences. Everything suggested I have attempted & will continue to incorporate into my own life. I love that we can do this alongside one another!

healthy lifestyle healthy living healthy food moderation accountability

3 Ingredient Pesto Pasta

Now more than ever before am I realizing time & energy are finite & if we’re doing something, we’re not doing another thing. Call it motherhood, call it my 30’s, whatever this awareness in my life is, I’m going with it.

My vibes lately. Let it go. Leave it be. Don’t sweat it. Don’t make a little deal a big deal. When I’m telling my kids these things, I need to be sure I’m practicing what I preach. So that big ‘ol bag of goldfish that just got emptied out all over the seat right after I just vacuumed out my car .. little deal! (I whisper to myself) The flower vase full of water that got hit by a couch pillow & poured out onto the floor. No one’s hurt, right? (I say to myself). The more I envision what my life will be like in 15 or 20 years, the more I want to preserve these teachable moments, my teachable moments.

Time. The more time I spend whining, the less time I spend having fun. These are more preaching to the choir phrases I say to my kids. Time isn’t stopping so I’d better make better choices. More key phrases. Insert women shrugging shoulders emoji here.

Have fun. If I’m not having fun, why am I doing it? Another teachable phrase. A lot of times, I’m making sure everyone else is having fun, I lose my ‘fun’ vibes in the midst of it. I love writing, I love listening to worship music & audiobooks, I love spending time with my family. But these things come at the cost of others, so this comes back to letting other things go. The perfect house, perfect kids, perfect social life, I’m letting go of it all. Being present will trump any memories of me cleaning the toilet. Let it go friends. I know this is easier said than don’t, but it is possible & I’m getting better!

Speaking of time, here’s an easy meal idea for ‘ya. We like to prep chicken & add to salads, etc. We used 1 c brown rice & quinoa noodles, pre-prepped boneless skinless, frozen chicken breast) about 1/2 the breast) & 2 T of pesto (pictured here).

Easiest dinner idea // pesto pasta & chicken.

If you’re feeling like life’s too much of a burden to bare, try to worry about the present moment you’re in, what needs to be done now.

Do not worry about tomorrow, each day has enough worry of it’s own. Full scripture see Matthew 6:34.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

Five Ways To Survive Summer With Small Kids

Summer’s here guys! Whether you’re out of school already, or holding on for dear life but can see the finish line, you made it! Yay!

If you’re a working mama, I hope you’re getting some vacay & time to play with the kiddos. I’ve been a working momma & I now stay at home, either way the struggle is real & the grass is always greener where you water it. Part of coping with this season of my life is trying (key word) to embrace & be present in each moment with my kiddos.

I’m breaking down some simple ways to stay sane through summer. Whether you’re in survival mode or planning ahead, I’m giving you 5 ideas that you can use round + round that will (hopefully) get you through summer vacay.

#1 play doh.I know what you’re thinking, duh, all moms know this. There are going to be moments when your kids are going to be asking you the same question 100 million times & you’re going to look at them & want to scream, “I heeeeeeeeeard you!!!!”. Don’t scream, take a deep breath & BUST OUT THE PLAY-DOH. I’m linking the play-doh tools because it will turn 15 minutes of fun into hours & in my opinion the quiet time is well worth the clean up, PROMISE. It’s a cheap & fun way of letting my kiddos create, practice taking turns (wishful thinking!) & learn their colors. For the older kiddos, have them make their own play-doh. I’m linking a recipe (that we plan to try), here.

#2 the park. If your kiddos are anything like mine, they like to jump, roll, wraaaaastle & run, in the house! We’re in a 2nd floor apartment with thin walls & a tiny patio. Any seasoned mama can you tell, there are all times when we scream, “Didn’t I tell you to stop running in the house (or stop throwing the ball, or tickling your sister…)?!?!?!”. Don’t yell, grab the stroller, the wagon, throw them in the car, do whatever it takes & GO TO THE PARK. Kids, both big & small sometimes just need a change of scenery. It works, I PROMISE. If, like ours, your park has sand, bring the toys.

#3 playdate. Need someone to chat with (because 8-year olds can only talk for so many minutes about the royal wedding, elections, or face creams)? Call a friend & meet at the park. I haven’t been very good all year at making play dates, but plan to push myself through summer. I plan on going mornings & evenings, cause energy levels are high & the sun is low! & ’cause we all know the bedtime roudies are sure to drive us insane!

#4 the pool or splash pad.  Like this one, that’s local to us, at Victoria Gardens.

#5 picnic with popsicles.  When I had two kiddos, we used to have picnics all of the time, now with three, I’m lucky if we all get to sit & chat for more than 2 minutes. We love stopping by Sprouts (or Target, or Trader Joe’s) & grabbing some popsicles. The trip to the store will go better if they have something to look forward to (fingers crossed!). My kiddos will sit quietly with popsicles for more than 2 minutes so the picnics will last longer! Popsicles are just one option, obviously picnics with anything are always fun. This is just a fun way to cool down & who doesn’t love sugar?! For my biggies, we like to make our own popsicles.

I’m hoping when the kids are crying “I’m bored”, you’re going to remember that your super helpful friend had these really easy ideas on the blog, ha! Take it from a homeschool mom who spends every waking moment with her kids, these work & require little thought. Another P that I live by is Pinterest. Pick an easy, age appropriate craft, or print a free worksheet.

I hope this is helpful. Leave a comment below with some more fun summer activities!

The utility wagons are all the hype & we use ours to haul the kiddos (see safety rules) & our soccer gear. Right now, they’re actually a really good price on Amazon & I’m linking it here..

Always, a bubble machine, for kids of all ages.

Paint!

What kiddo doesn’t love a water table?

Moms’ best friend, Mr. Lego.

These are affiliate links & if a purchase is made it may result in a small commission (coffee $$) to me. Happy shopping!

Here’s to embracing each summer moment & being hopeful & happy where we’re all at in our present season.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

Five Ways To Get Rid Of Clutter

The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up

My husband took the kiddos out yesterday to run some errands & I got to clear out some toy clutter that had been ailing me! A little history behind our living situation, we are a family of five living in a small space. We all share a clothes closet & it’s been more liberating than anything. Disassociating myself from ‘things’ has been the #1 learning experience from our last move. Yesterday’s efforts are pictured here.

Showing you this photo of a clean corner of my house is kind of like social media, you can’t see the rest of the mess, ha!

I also recently finished the book ‘The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ by Marie Kondo & if you follow me on instagram I promised a review of the book. A few things really stood out to me & I wanted to share them here.

Discard suddenly, not over time, & once this is done I’ll only have to tidy. I’ve found this to be true in some areas of our house. I feel like I’ve gained control over our kitchen & the bathrooms. Tidying these areas is much easier after the move when we discarded a ton of our stuff.

Only keep what sparks joy. I don’t always agree that we should be finding joy in things however I think it’s important to enjoy the things we wear or the toys occupying space.

I am the standard for how much I want to keep. Minimalism is on the rise & just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. I’m enjoying the less is more philosophy but my less may look like much more than your less. According to Marie Kondo, determiningmygoal would be the first step towards a clutter free life.

Discard by category, not location, & focus on my own belongings. For example, I can start with all of my clothes.

Decide what I’m keeping instead of what I’m throwing out. Idid this for the kiddos by dumping out their toys & having them pull out only what they wanted to keep (example below). It helped except when my son said he wanted to keep everything, ha! I then told him he could keep it if he could fit it into his drawers, we compromised.

I’ve only touched on a few things from the book however, there are so many more helpful techniques, stories & tips she shares! She references Japanese culture & you can find relatable topics on Pinterest by searching KonMari methods.

Here are some before & after of my attempts at tidying.

The only way I’m able to ‘read’ books is having an audible membership. It’s worth every penny in my opinion. I’ve read/listened to more books in the last year than I have in the last 5 years. I love being able to listen in the car, at the gym, or while I’m cleaning the house.

You can access the audible membership by clicking this link.

You can access the audible option of Marie’s book by clicking the image below. If you have an audible membership, I believe it’s good for one credit (which you get monthly). I personally used a credit for it.

These are affiliate links & if a purchase is made it may result in a small commission to me, I appreciate the support!

I guess you can say I’m finally on a skeleton wardrobe too! It’s considered a small amount of clothes, accessories & shoes (between 25-35 pieces) that’s interchangeable, for the season.

I may be working with less than normal because I wear more athletic gear than anything. Here’s just about everything hanging in my closet.

This is the scripture I’ve been keeping in mind when I decide what to keep. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough worry of its own. Matthew 6:34.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

Here’s the book I’m starting next!

Here’s my current read!

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Carlsbad & Ten Years

Can you believe it’s been TEN whole years since Isaac & I have gotten married?  I can’t!  It’s gone by so fast.  Kinda scary, kinda relieving to know that if we just hang in there it’ll be 40 before we know it, ha!

As part of our anniversary celebration we decided to celebrate with the kiddos & head to Carlsbad! We spent a night at South Carlsbad State Beach, in a tent! It was breathtaking & we were the loudest bunch at camp. I got a lot of smiles from Baby Boomers & even a comment from one of them as she saw me playing with my very active two year old, her side eye turned into, “Those are the greatest years, enjoy them!”. Her insight forced me to stop & enjoy the moment. The squishy skin, the ooohhhhssss & aawwwwsssss of my Cali babes who rarely get to see the ocean. The sandy bums & the whimpers when hunger or fatigue was just too much to bare. Camping with littles is hard. Okay anything with littles is hard, ha! However I’m finding it more & more a necessity for me to step away from the stressors of home & decipher the difference between need & want.

We got a flat tire on the morning we were supposed to be leaving & the air conditioner at home stopped working. It didn’t stop us though! Who needs a/c anyway, ha! Ask me that again when it gets in the hundreds!

I never want to look back on this season of my life & wonder why I was so consumed with how to finish it all, or what to prioritize, or why I cared so much about what everyone else thought. My goal is to look back & see that I submerged myself in the season, how I stayed behind to get ahead, how I paused for moments of gratitude, how relationship was the main ingredient combined with grace, love, hope & forgiveness. How we kept asking questions & Jesus was always the answer.

These are #lifegoals & every day I fall short, but imperfect progress finishes the race & Carlsbad is where I needed to go to refuel ‘the tank’.

Isaac & I got married 10 years ago & if anyone doubted if we’d make it this far, it was me. He’s charming & funny & I’m awkward & maybe a little uptight, ha! But prayers, praying, prayed, always pray! ALWAYS! & celebrate! With cake, ha!

Carlsbad camping // of course we picked the coldest week in May to go! It actually rained on our tent a few times in the night. The most humbling sound of the waves crashing woke me up & I wasn’t mad about it. It was kind of last minute & a bit LeBrijaish of us to only stay for a night, but to be honest I’m not sure we could have lasted more than that, ha! The kiddos had a blast & overall probably one of our best vacays yet! Hard work & all!

Here are some photos.

Carlsbad camping South Carlsbad state beach campingMaking a campfire Celebrating a swim in the deep blue seaExcited about showering in the camp showers

Legoland // have you all seen the playpass the park is offering? I’m linking it here here, the offer is only good for 4 more days but you cannot beat the price! We are huuuuuuge Legoland fans! There’s so much learning, fun & beachy breezes! If you’re a homeschooler, they have special rates/days available. I know a lot of people are off for summer & I highly suggest checking it out! Toddler parksFinally tall enough to rideLegoland drivers licensesStop & smell the roses.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna

MOMS

Yesterday was busy.  Not busy in the way that I had a ton of stuff to do.  Busy in a sense that I had a lot on my mind.  So much so that I wore my shirt backwards all day & didn’t even notice until it was time to change into my pajamas.  It was a v-neck with a front pocket so there was a clear difference between front & back.  Sigh.  I guess it could have been worse.

Yesterday my daughter asked me, “Was Mother’s Day your best day ever?”.  Yesterday, Monday, I felt awfully moody & assumed the role of, “Why me?  Really, another load of laundry!?  Ugh!”.  Her question had me thinking & then quickly took me back to when Mother’s Day felt like a ton of rocks had just fallen on my chest & the only way to release the pressure was to erupt with tears like a volcano.  That time when I would have longed to do baby laundry.  That time where I was promising God that if he would heal Stella I would have been the BEST.MOM.EVER, no complaining, NOPE, NOT EVER.

I recently asked God why?  Why the pain & suffering?  Why life & then death & the everything in between?  Shortly after I asked, my husband had been watching a documentary in the room & from the kitchen I heard the narrator say, “God never intended this.”.  The next day I was reading my devotional & it started out, “The fall of man,  God never intended that.”.  If you’re a control freak like me, those answers weren’t sufficient enough.  So I went on to ask why not?  Then what was the intention?

It’s easy to see that with the fall of man came fear, anger & pain.  But there’s also redemption, healing & hope.  I experienced these through the life of my tiny babe Stella.  Maybe I didn’t experience her healing, but I got to experience my own.  I’m not sure why I lost a baby.  It was painstakingly an experience I will never take back.  Now, I’m happy when I share her life with others.  She’s given me hope.  Even if it’s a hope that doesn’t make complete sense, I want to believe that her little spirit had come to show me that there’s much more to this life.  A consistent reminder to not get comfortable here.

If I look at every day as my best day then I can say that every day is a celebration of life.  As hard as it is to get through toddler tantrums, or cut the 100th apple, or do the thousandth load of laundry, it is the best day ever & I can see His love & strength through it all.

Even if this wasn’t His intention, he still created us to share His love with one another.  He still created us to see hope through each others’ lives.

God loves us & he wants to fulfill our every day, not just our holidays, or our somedays.

I like to think of holidays as challenges more than anything.  Sometimes I feel like I want to change the world, but it was Mother Teresa who said, “If you want to change the world, go home & love your family.”.  So the challenge is that, to love my family.

Seasons change my friends & one day my kiddos will be beating the door down to get out, instead of trying to climb into my lap.  I’m also not naive to the fact that there will be bad days too, maybe even more than good.  That my life, as I know it now, could change in an instant.  So maybe instead of living day x day, I live moment x moment, trusting that His purpose for my life is so much greater than my own.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will take take care of itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.  Matthew 6:34

With grace & coffee,

Waynnaimg_1408

Five Kid-Friendly, Healthy Dessert and Snack Recipes

My weekend was amazing & I hope yours was too!  We got away for a little & then realized that, in parenting, missing kids is inevitable & almost counterproductive to a good time.  But I’m back in mom-mode & couldn’t be more grateful for grandmas & aunties & these babes that call me mom, mama, mommy & wahhhhhhhh!!!  The sweetest sounds of motherhood, sigh.

We went to a marriage weekend hosted by our church & I’m sharing a few points that stood out to me.  I probably should also mention that all of these thoughts are my own, influenced by what I learned through the teaching.

“There are no grace-graduates.” //  This was actually a direct quote from the speaker & kind of solidified my thoughts on marriage & grace.  I’m on an imperfect journey in pursuit of a perfect destination.  Which leads me to my next point.

Set our sights on things above // Another direct quote from the teacher was, “Creation was never meant to be our Savior.”, eeeeeeek.  It’s amazing how often I look to my husband as my savior of all the things.  I mean giving credit where credit’s due, he’s pretty amazing, but if I put all of my trust & hope into him, I will be let down.  Colossians 3:2 says to set our minds on the things above, not earthly things.  With this in mind, I’m able to re-prioritize & re-energize my spiritual needs & put my marriage at the foot of the cross, where it belongs.

It’s not him, it’s me // I think it was my mom who always asked me, “If they jumped off of a cliff, would you do it too?”.  As a child I remember kind of pondering this for a moment.  I’d hope not, but sometimes the way I react says I would.  Simply put, I can’t control the way others act, I can only control the way I react.

It’s also important to understand that a lot of my frustrations, with anyone really, can often be extinguished by more effective communication, empathy & grace.  So I pray for strength in this area & that I can incorporate all that I learned into my daily life & marriage.

Onto desserts, sweet treats, snacks // Whatever you want to call them, they are a staple in our house.  I must also mention that I’m not a nutritionist, dietician, or any kind of food expert.  I work on moderation, through grace, even in the category of food.

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As you can see, I took three ingredients (pictured below); greek yogurt (about 3 T, per cup), strawberries (about 1 cut up, per cup) & dark chocolate (1 square, per cup) & froze for about an hour.  This is so easy & can actually be put on your list of meal prep items for the week.  They’re sweet & will satisfy that tooth, yes, you know the one.  They will need to be thawed a little before eating, if kept in there for any longer & time will vary according to freezer setting.  My husband recommended adding a little bit of honey to each cup.

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Banana cream (pictured below)!  I once saw this one a Disney Junior segment & we tried it when the kiddos were little, but I saw it again through my Pinterest feed.  After freezing the bananas I threw into my food processor, then into a small bowl, added dark chocolate chips & coconut chips. You can also store the remaining to freeze.  Three bananas made about 3-4 small cup servings.  I recommend peeling the bananas before throwing them in the freezer or else they’ll need to thaw some before peeling.  If this seems obvious, it didn’t to me at the time, ha!  Enjoy!

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Trail mix!  Okay, this is a staple in our house for the kiddos because it’s something they can make on their own & it actually becomes kind of a fun activity.  I challenge you to head into your cabinet & use what you have.  I worked off of ingredients from the previous options & wallah!  I used granola, coconut chips & dark chocolate chips.  This was probably the most sugary because of the amount I used & the ingredients so maybe next time I’ll use almonds instead of granola.  This is another great meal prep (snack) option as well.

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Last, but not least, lots of strawberries, about 2 T of Greek yogurt & dark chocolate chips.  SO yummy & SO easy.  I think this one was by far our favorite.

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I finally got to try Halo Top (pictured below)!  We bought the birthday cake & mint chocolate chip flavor.  My daughter preferred the Mint Chocolate chip & I think I did too.  It was really yummy & I could definitely taste the difference compared to regular ice cream.  I’m going to say that it’s not the most budget friendly option, but a great alternative if you’re an ice cream fanatic, like me.f57878b1-9f0d-4034-9781-c4e52e014bf7The most fun part was having a readily available taste tester!  My kiddos loved the trail mix because they could add their favorites & because of the chocolate chip to granola ratio, ha!  With that, I’m grateful for marriage weekends, food & family.

With grace & coffee,

Waynna