Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Hello Friends,
It is the second to last day of February, so I am hoping this brings me to the end of the unplanned, but somehow routine, sabbaticle that the February Plague always manages to push me into. This month has been littered with colds, fevers, ear infections, stomach bugs, and even strep throat for yours truly, but it's coming to an end, and spring must be right around the corner. I insist.

I'm officially in my third trimester now, and Saturday I will be a nice round 30 weeks pregnant. WooHoo.

Other than being the sickest person in my family and operating on next to no immune system, I'm still feeling pretty good. Love baby kicks and spins, love having an excuse to buy smoothies frequently, love getting fat on purpose :)

Yes, I have decided that ending a sentence with a smiley face replaces traditional punctuation, rendering periods and exclamation points redundant and therefore unnecessary :-P

As you can probably tell from my fun new Instagram slideshow on the sidebar, my husband and I have finally upgraded to smartphones. We really had no choice in the matter as his phone had been missing for close to a month and not having a phone when your wife is pregnant really isn't an option. But we didn't want to update our plan to get a free feature phone and then feel locked into that for another two years when this world we live in really is making it harder and harder not to have smartphones. It's such a monopoly. Anywho, Brian's awesome brother gave him a pretty spectacular phone, and mine was free with the upgrade, so I think in the end, it all worked out.

And now I can easily post awesome pictures like this...
 and this...

and we can't leave out this handsome fella who makes my heart a pitter patter...

It is Dr. Suess week at school and today was Wacky Wednesday in Owen's class, which meant that the kids were asked to wear their wackiest outfit and wackiest hair.  So, this is what I came up with.

Okay teachers, can I just say how incredibly stressful this is on a parent? Yes, I know this is fun for the kids, yes I think it's great to have parties to help break up the year and make learning hands on. However, wacky day proved to be an extreme challenge for us, girls, would be easy put polka dot pants on with a tutu and a stripped shirt and voila. But my son has a closet full of jeans and sweat pants, all of which are pretty tame. No polka dots in his wardrobe. No tutu's. Etc. After some deep brainstorming I decided to do shorts over his brothers tight pajama pants.

But that's not the only stress or challenge on a day like this. I hated these days when I was growing up, and I hate them now. Here is why. I never wanted to participate, I didn't like drawing attention to myself, risk being teased. And so, having a day where I have to send my son to the wolves, so to speak, dressed wacky, makes my heart flutter with pressure. I don't want him under dressed, because well, that would look bad in the class pictures they are going to take, and I don't want him over dressed because I don't want to call unnecessary attention to him. There weren't rules about what he could and couldn't wear or do to obtain "wacky" so was coloring his hair acceptable, or a step too far?

Can you hear all of these thoughts clunking around in my head and see how they can start to hinder the creative process?

In addition to the outfit, we were told on Monday that we had to have a banana today. Okay, great, but as of 9:00 last night we didn't have any banana's and we were in the middle of an ice storm. Do we go to the store and get a banana or don't we? If we do, and school is cancelled, that's a pain. But if we don't, and school isn't canceled, well, someone would have to go buy a banana at 7:00 in the morning. Um, yeah. Silly, wacky, crazy thoughts, I know, but these were the real dilemma's we faced last night. Luckily, I married an amazing man who saw my stress about the banana and went to the store for me to get it, and some juice, and  chocolate. He's a keeper.

Aside from the stress of it all, I love this idea of having Wacky Wednesday in middle of the week. He looked so adorable today, and it's fun to be a little crazy every now and then.

Here's a little more wacky for your Wednesday :)

Now friends who have smart phones, what free apps, games, and tools do you think I absolutely must have? I'll even accept low cost app recommendations that I'll add to a list for whenever I get a gift card for my first few purchases!

Have a Wacky Wednesday friends :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

On Life and Storing Up Memories

I think about this all of the time. Though not usually so poetically, or in a way that brings tears to my eyes like the poster above. All too often, it comes out in a refrain that sounds a little too much like "this too shall pass, this too shall pass." But, oh how sad I really will be when it does. . .I know this because Owen has already grown so much, and though he's always been independent he's definitely turning into quite the little man, and I'm proud, but also sad, all at once.

A few good memories from this last week, or stage of life, or whatever comes to mind, that I'd love to be able to read and reflect on once this season has come to pass.

  • On Sunday a soccer ball broke a candle holder I'd just purchased before Christmas. Lucky for them, I was Oil Pulling at the time and couldn't respond at all and it only cost $5 so it really wasn't the tragedy they thought. But, what I hold onto and remember with joy, is both boys coming out of their time out (that dad initiated) and taking ownership. "Mommy, I'm sorry" Owen said, "It was my fault, I'm the oldest and I should know better." All the while Micah's voice is chiming in "No, it's all my fault, I did it, I'm sorry." Moments like that make me think, wow, maybe we are doing something right. Then my next thought was it's a good thing I hadn't been able to react, maybe I should spit my oil out now, so I can tell them how proud I am of them.  

Hee hee hee. It's okay, I tell you these things, just so you can relate, or laugh. Whichever. Either way, I'm not perfect, I screw up, and once in a while I get it right, by accident, because my mouth is too full to speak without spewing all over my children. I told you it's okay, go ahead and laugh now :)

  • The other night my husband was lounging on the couch in his most relaxed state, back arched, belly sticking out, enjoying a moment of comfort, when Micah crawls up onto his lap and says "Daddy, you have a baby in your belly too?" Dad being a good sport replies "Yeah, I have a big baby don't I?" Micah rubs his stomach and smiles, acting for a moment as though he really believes his dad is pregnant. So I chime in "Micah, why don't you talk to daddy's baby?" (This is one of those moments I wish we could buy recordings of  because his response was priceless, I'm just not sure words could capture it, but I'm going to try.) He turned and looked at me, his brows arched in confusion, and with the sweetest most shocked voice he says "Daddy doesn't really have a baby in his belly . . . That was a joke!" As though he's telling me something I didn't know, like I was crazy for suggesting it. The first phrase came out slowly, as though he was weighing his words carefully and the second part was full of his emotion and joy. We, of course, died of laughter, Brian laughed for a good 4 minutes and Micah just watched us laugh, laughing at first, but mostly just staring us down, trying to figure out what had been so funny.

  • Micah and Owen playing power rangers in the living room. Micah takes down Owen. It's a beautiful moment, black ranger against red ranger, dinosaur ranger verses somebody else, pow, whack, wham, bodies on the floor, legs a kicking, arms a going. "I've got you"'s and "Your going down"s echoing off the walls, laughter weaving it's way through the tangled bodies. Ninety seconds of my children are getting along bliss, then the tears come. Someone got kneed, or scratched, or head butted. A kiss. A hug. All is forgotten and the rangers are in action again. 

  • After about a month of blasting our kids into outer-space at bedtime, they decided this week, they don't want to ride the rocket ship to the moon anymore. Owen wanted to be a robot, and Micah a car, so now their bed is a transformer, because that way they can be both a car and a robot at the same time. So, last night instead of "13, 14, 15 BLASTOFF," my amazing husband stood at the door and proclaimed in his best robot voice "Robot one, robot two" all the way to "RooooooooooooooBOT FIFTEEEEEEN" before closing their door. And the boys stayed in bed. Which is one of the most beautiful moments of all, after 2 years of fighting Micah at bedtime that this new routine has made our evenings go so much more smoothly.  Not every night is so smooth, but every night is better than it was before. 

  • We've been enjoying lazy Saturday mornings where we actually get to see the clock hit nine before we crawl out of bed, sometimes the kids are still asleep, and sometimes they are destroying the house, but we know that soon, when Sienna arrives these mornings wont be quite so relaxing, at least not at first. So, I think we enjoy them more, because we know that they are fleeting. 
So much beauty, and good surrounds us. Trying to remember to stop and enjoy the moments, to rest and relax while life and memories are made around me. It brings me back to Psalm 139. How the Lord has each of these moments, memories, days, all written down, how his thoughts for me are so innumerable I couldn't begin to imagine them. All the thought and emotion and love that went into the title of my blog. 

Nothing too profound today, and yet, beautiful anyway because it's real. It's life, and it's important to take stock and store up these moments before it's too late. 

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Muddied Waters

Today I'm struggling, with an inward battle.
It's one I've faced before,
and I'm sure will face again.

It could be called a battle,
or perhaps a balancing act.

Trusting oneself, vs. the world around them.
Unnecessarily fearing something, vs. ignoring a warning.

One source says this,
another that.
One direction results in this,
or that, while the other results in that,
or maybe this.

Do I want the this more than the that?
Is risking this, for that, worth the risk?

It's like walking a tightrope across muddied waters.

Directed by a slew of voices.
Which one is right?
Which direction do I follow?

Then I hear it,
that still small voice that says,
"Remain calm. Pray about it. Trust Me."

And so I do.
Or I try, for a moment or two.

Then I remember the Lord gave me intuition.
And the internet.
A husband, and a phone call that didn't go as planned.
He gave me friends.
Friends who have experiences,
wisdom gained,
through unimaginable pain.

 The tears together we weep.

I stop a moment to ponder.
Beauty in things.
Friends. Journeys. Confusion.
We were not meant to travel this world alone.

Then my mind resumes again.
I remember my intuition,
my body, the internet,
my husband, the phone call,
and friends.
And the waters are muddied again.

Each possibly a tool from the Lord,
each sending my mind, and heart in a different direction.

Keep resting, keep breathing, be still.
He's there.
In the stillness, there is peace.
In the quiet He speaks.

One thing I know,
is that He did not give me fear.

So I cast that off, and put on Truth.
I wait, and pray, and trust.

The waters may be muddied from here,
where I stand, on my tight rope balancing the different
directions thrown at me, but from heaven,
where my father stands,
those waters are perfectly clear.
And His hand, is ready, to hold me, to lead me.


Friday, January 25, 2013

It's 5 O'clock Somewhere

A few years ago I discovered that my best time to write is at 5:00 AM. I found that before the sun is up, and the demands of motherhood, wife-hood, and influences of social media have soaked into my pores, my mind is at it's clearest. Something I guess I knew in college, for when I was under an intense deadline I would go to bed early and then get up at 5:00 (to my sweet and amazing roommates dismay) to finish my papers, and contrary to what my friends and family expected, I did better on those papers than the others.

For a short period of time at the end of 2011 I managed to get myself into a great routine where I arose before the sun, made myself some hot apple cider, and curled up in the office with nothing but an open word document and a blanket.

I loved it.

And I hated it.

I would manage to keep this routine going for several days and then the weekend would knock me off of my track. Or otherwise put, after getting up that early for a week or two, I would burn out. So, I'd get lazy for awhile, and then, I'd try again. But each time I tried, it seemed my determination and conviction to do it lessened. Even though I loved it, I seemed to decide that I loved or needed sleep more.

There are a few things that contributed to this problem.

First and foremost, I think, is that I have never ever in my whole wide life been a morning person. Just ask my dad. He tried everything to help get me up and moving, he even brought me breakfast in bed for a season because it was the only way he could get breakfast in me before I left the house. (Have I ever mentioned what a great man he is? I now see what I put him through every morning as I call out the countdown to Owen, "bud, it's 8:05 I really need you to get up. That's 5 minutes until the bus is here." Everyday I'm reminded of my dad walking down the hall, rapping on the door, and telling me the time. This pattern even continued through high school, I just hated to get up.) I still hate to get up. It feels like torture. My poor children do not have that mother who is up and ready to go before them, ready to tackle the day with a smile on her face.

Which segues nicely into my next problem. I'm the mother of (currently) two small children. Waking up at 5:00 can often disturb the peace of our home, drawing a child  (particularly my youngest as I just told you my five year old sleeps like a teenager) out of his cave and waking him prematurely. This was a problem half of the time. The other half of the time said child had already abandoned his cave in favor of mine. Snuggling right next to me, his head on my arm, in the sweetest way possible. How do you leave your bed when a little munchkin is content in your arms? It takes a lot more motivation for one thing, and then there is a much higher risk of, again, disturbing the peace.

Now, I should note, these were problems I ran into a year ago. Now, Micah is less likely to be in my bed, at least until 7, and they both sleep a little more soundly these days seemingly making this phase of life a better one to attempt or reattempt my writing routine. However, now there is a little matter of growing a large cantaloupe in my belly and all of the sleep and energy that requires. In many ways this has been my best pregnancy, with Owen I had back pain, with Micah I was very stressed and uncomfortable (I believe) as a result, and this time, aside from extreme (for me) morning sickness early on I generally feel great and I haven't yet gained any weight. Great, but exhausted. Things that didn't phase me with thing one or thing two pretty much knock me flat on and  my back with this one. By the end of a day I am dead on the couch and my eyes start to droop around 9:00.

Listen to me and my many excuses.

I was telling all of this to a good friend of mine a few weeks ago, about how 5:00 is my best time to write, and yet as much as I wish it did, it just doesn't work for me at this stage of life. "I just have to find my 5:00 at another time, make some other time of the day work for me the same way."

And that's when I remembered the popular country song, "It's 5 O'clock Somewhere." It's interesting to me how many people quote this song when looking for a reason, an excuse, to have an early drink.

Now, I don't drink, but I think I can learn something from this song and the resulting catch phrase. I simply need to make this a priority, instead of finding excuses or hiding behind reasons not to do something, in this case writing, which I love. I need to make excuses and find reasons to do it. I simply need to find my 5:00 at another time.

I haven't found it, yet. But I think I'm getting close.

Perhaps, my 5:00 AM can be a different time each day and it isn't quite as complicated as I always try to make it in my mind. I think, having put a name to it and found a catch phrase for myself, and the fact that I have started identifying, even if it's just internally for now, the reasons why I make these excuses in the first place, will all help me to find that place, inwardly, where I can tune out the world and my day to tune into that place where composition is easy and isn't inhibited. Finally, I think I need to make my 5:00 less about a specific time and more about the things that help me unwind, a steady supply of hot apple cider, a blanket and a quiet room to escape to for starters. (Quiet in a house of boys, an oxymoron if I've ever heard of one.)

So friends, I wonder, am I the only one who makes excuses NOT to do something they know internally they need to be doing?

What things do you do, to motivate and encourage yourself when those excuses are taking over and derailing your enthusiasm?

I'd especially love to hear from you, my blogging/writing friends, about your 5:00, is it a time, or a thing that brings you to that place of productivity?

I don't make a habit of blogging on the weekends, but my son interviewed me this week, and I'd like to share it with you. So, I hope you will make your way back here tomorrow for that little bit of my heart.

Until then,

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Pin So Stupid I HAD To Try It

Not everything on the internet is true. It's like a mantra that I seem to say to a lot of people. Specifically related to Facebook, there are so many odd jokes people post or statuses that make you say "huh?" but then I remember, not everything on the internet is true. I forgive people for their stupidity, take it with a grain of salt, and move on.

But Pinterest? That's a different story. It's not to say that I believe EVERYTHING I read on Pinterest, or that every trick of the trade will work for me, but generally I expect that the things pinned have been tried by someone who deemed them pinterest worthy. I automatically assume, someone, somewhere has tried this, and found some truth to it. Pinterest hasn't turned me into a complete idiot, or so I thought, but generally speaking I tend to be more understanding and accepting of statement as fact.

Then, I saw this pin.

To straighten hair without heat,
 just mix a cup of water with 2 tablespoons of BROWN sugar, 
pour it into a spray bottle, then spray into damp hair and let air dry!

I scoffed.
I shook my head, in disgrace.
Who would believe such a stupid thing?

I didn't open it. I didn't pin it. I didn't give it another thought. Or, I wish I hadn't given it another thought. The truth of the matter is, the concept was so off the wall, I kept coming back to it. Maybe just maybe, someone really did have success with this? There have been other pins that seemed outrageous but in fact have brought a lot of success to people or made their lives easier in some way shape or form. Perhaps? Maybe?

These thoughts continued on for about 4 days. Then, one evening after getting my kids home/off the bus I had about an hour to shower and get ready for a work meeting 45 minutes away from home. I thought, well, maybe I'll try this trick so that I can have a little time to spend with my kids instead of slaving away with the blow dryer and flat iron for the entire hour.

So, I succumbed people. I tried the pin that was so stupid I scoffed at the person who created it.

What was the worst that could happen? I figured, the worst case scenario was that my hair wouldn't dry straight, it would be frizzy or wavy and it I'd throw it up in a pony tail or a bun.


I wish I'd taken pictures of the progress, but as I mentioned, I'd gone to a meeting for work.

At first, after mixing not two but maybe 1 tablespoon of brown sugar in a bottle with well over a cup of water and spraying it on my hair, my hair did appear to be smother. I combed it and it remained perfectly combed and straight for a long period of time. As I watched tv with the kids and played imaginary games with Micah John I kept checking my hair, it was starting to dry. It wasn't great, but it wasn't horrible.

Then, just before leaving the house I noticed something.

Something I should have realized would happen.

Why should I have realized there would be terrible consequences? Because it's common sense.
Sugar is sticky.

And so was my hair. The back underneath portion that is always kind of dry and impossible to work with was now, sticky, straw like, and even more impossible to work with. I quickly threw my hair into a low pony which I flipped and tucked effectively hiding my hair in a low bun like mess for my meeting.

By the time I got home, my hair was a birds nest. It was not straight. It was not soft or silky like the picture implied. It wasn't even hair. It was like straw.

It made me think of the girls in college who had bleached their hair blond so many times that it didn't even resemble hair anymore. Hair after hundreds of harsh chemicals had stripped it raw.

That was me. After putting a tiny bit of brown sugar in a large spray bottle of water and spritzing less than an ounce of said concoction on my hair.

Apparently, I'm not the only one who was hoodwinked by this woman's silky shiny hair, because when I did a search today for the original pin I found this:

Yup, that about sums it up. Though, I would add straw, and birds nest, to the descriptive words.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I think I'm going to go surf around to see what other catastrophes I can avoid!

Have you tried a pin, simply because you HAD to know if it would work? Did it? or was it a total fail?

I'd love to hear the good the bad, and the sticky :)

Until Friday my friends!


Oh, I almost forgot, this is a good time to share belly pics so here you go, 24+ weeks :) Sorry about the awkward camera-phone-in-mirror photo.

Monday, January 21, 2013

The Adaptability of Eye Shadow and Devotions

The last three weeks have been a fresh start, here on my blog, at home with the kids, with my husband, and with my Lord. Not that any of those relationships started over, just that they each started again, started fresh with new and exciting energy and enthusiasm. As I mentioned last week, we committed to a few small changes to help us better stick with them and follow them through, and as a result, our home has transformed. It's only been three weeks, but it has been a fabulous three weeks and I think we can all attest that when we see success it is easier to push forward.

I feel revived, if you haven't noticed, our house isn't actually clean but it's like the air around us is, and I keep taking it in, deep breaths of God's goodness and guidance. I can feel the Lord working in me and the Spirit urging and guiding me as I dig through and chew on God's word like I've never felt Him before. Yes, we have made great strides this month, but that doesn't mean we have arrived, or that we've even begun to scratch the surface.

There is still so much soul digging, growing, and strengthening that needs to be done. It's a life journey. Now that we are on the right track,our hearts are opened to and ready for the depth and digging needed to bring convictions that lead to the changes and works the the Lord wants to do in our lives. This process is challenging and it's going to require dedication, openness, honesty, and repentance. The transformation I'm talking about needs to take place deep within, you've heard the phrase "not a diet but a life style change", well that's what I'm talking about, not something short lived that has little impact but long term, life changing impact.

Last week, I stumbled upon a Christian community called She Reads Truth. This site hosts a daily devotional and Bible reading plan. When I found it, they were at the end (though I didn't realize it) of a plan called "Fresh Start." Huh, interesting concept right?

Well, that 19 day plan ended over the weekend and now they/we are digging into a new reading plan called Soul Detox.  Here is one small section of a captivating description which I felt really spoke to everything I've been feeling and sharing here.

If you’re tired of the stain of sinful habits discoloring your life, if you long to breathe the fresh, clean, life-giving air of God’s holiness, if you would love to detoxify your soul from guilt, fear, regret, and all the impurities that pollute your relationship with God, then this reading plan is for you.
Truth be told, I know there are a ton of good daily devotionals designed for Christian women that build community and accountability, but I'm new to the game. Why? Because it hasn't felt like a good fit. It hasn't been a comfortable or easy transition. This morning, I was applying my eye shadow, which until recently I'd been using exactly the same colors and doing in exactly the same way for probably about three years. But my sister bought me some good stuff for Christmas, in colors that I've never owned before. This has caused me to do some experimenting, playing with different options to get a look I'm comfortable with, while also trying some fun dramatic looks I'm less comfortable with but that made my husband say "oooh la la."

While experimenting, I discovered a technique that I've heard of but not tried, and frankly thought I wouldn't like. The technique is using the dark eye shadow color on my lash line instead of using eye liner. In my 18 years of doing make up, I've never done this. I've always opted for the eye liner because it was comfortable, though it's not always been a happy or perfect relationship. Finding the perfect eye liner is a chore and a pain. What I discovered, is that being afraid to try something different with my eye shadow, just because it wasn't comfortable or would take time to adjust to, has caused me to miss out on a subtle but substantial change in the way my eye make up looks and lasts throughout the day.

There are as many ways to wear your eye shadow as there are people who wear it, and as many techniques for applying it as there are companies who make it. There is a little something for everyone, and what works for you this week, month or year, might not, be the only way or your favorite way once you have discovered something new. I think the same can be said for our devotion/Bible reading time. There are so many plans, ideas, and recommendations out there, not one of them is wrong, but that doesn't mean they are all right for you, or right for you right now. As time goes on, you might find something you thought worked perfectly isn't working as well, and decide to tweak it. That's okay, like eye shadow, you might find something better for you in this moment that you never would have expected to work.

My point is that, eye shadow application, Bible/devotion reading, even life, are all adaptable, and by being afraid to try something new, or change can cause us to miss out on those "oooh la la" moments with our husbands, deep spiritual insight with other women, or even moments of joy with our kids.  I'm excited to be branching out and trying something new again today with the She Reads Truth study and community and know that the Lord will use this time to stir great and amazing insights and truths within me.I have already been challenged by today's reading alone. I'm looking forward to meeting new women through their community and perhaps growing blog relationships that way as well, but most importantly, they say this reading plan is life changing, and that my friends is what I'm most excited about.

So, let me ask you... Are you in between devotions, or wishing you had a specific guided plan to help you examine an area of your life? Do you want women to help hold you accountable to finding a handful of minutes a day and setting them aside for Jesus? I would love it if you'd come join in the fun. It's really really awesome. I'm serious. Go there. now. MWA!

Until Wednesday my friends,

Friday, January 18, 2013

What It Means to be a Writer, The New School of Thought

I recently bought a sort of "how to book" for aspiring writers on Kindle. It wasn't an expensive purchase, it cost me $0.00 to download. I eagerly began reading and quickly discovered the book wasn't worth the zero pennies I'd paid for it and despite myself I kept reading, thinking it was bound to get better. There would be something significant buried between the verbose and repetitive pages. More than 40% of this book later I feel as though I greatly wasted my time.

And yet, I also feel encouraged. You see, if he could do it...

Despite the fact that his writing was cheesy, far from riveting  and majorly lacking in actual content. The main concept of his book stuck with me: To be a writer, you just have to believe it.

That's it.

My dad would argue that to be a writer you actually have to write. A true writer, he has told me before, doesn't concern themselves with what other people think, they write because they have to. They write constantly, because they are compelled to. Not writing, would be in essence like starving. Dedication, time, and passion are the keys to success as a writer and ultimately the satisfaction comes from within. These words produce an image in my mind of someone chained to their computer, literally wasting away as they ferociously type every spare minute of the day. defines a writer as: a person engaged in writing books, articles, stories, etc., especially as an occupation. An author or a journalist. This definition, with the emphasis and inflection on the italicized words more accurately defines how I've looked at it during the years. If I'm not actively writing a book, then I must not be a writer. I can't claim to be a writer until I've been validated as one via publication or career. These inflections, give way to self doubt, and self doubt will, be frank, self doubt is a female dog who will jump up and rip the flesh right off your tushy every time you give her the chance.

So where does that leave me then? A wife, mother, friend/sister, ministry leader, and {basically}full time employee (oh, and lets not forget I'm currently pregnant with my third). There isn't enough time in my life to fit in the type of writing my dad describes as necessary. Yet, when I write I feel alive in a way that nothing else can touch. My thoughts become more coherent and my connection with my Lord increases tenfold. Since starting this blog two years ago, I've learned that the more I write, the more I want to write. I never would have said that I feel like I'm starving when I'm not writing, but I've discovered that when I'm not writing my fuse is shorter, my relationship with the Lord suffers, and my creativity all but dries up. That sort of sounds a bit like starving doesn't it?

But what has happened time and time again, both in this space and in other writing pursuits,  is I allow that self doubt to come in and take chunk after painful and gory chunk out of my otherwise cute little tushy. That's where the first school of thought must come back into play. At some point, you have to believe you are what you want to become, or you wont ever be able to stand up to the pressures and doubts long enough to succeed. Ultimately, you aren't going to get that public validation until you have believed in yourself enough to put a muzzle on that self doubt and lock it in a kennel. Throw away the key too, wont you please?

The Lord has blessed me with a handful of women who have made it their mission to encourage me in my writing. Women whom without, my blog would have died out many many moons ago. The Lord has used each of these women to validate me and my passion on multiple occasions throughout the last two years. I have their words embedded deep in my heart for safe keeping. My husband, my greatest supporter, has been telling me for years that I can do it, that I just need to believe in myself. Oddly enough, I would just ignore him. Almost as though his confidence in me was falsified because we are married. As a result, he'd say "believe in yourself" and I would roll my eyes at him and hmph with my arms crossed or back turned. Easier said than done, right? Not according to this idiot who published an ebook. According to him, it just requires repeating the words "I am a writer" over and over, and owning them. Stupid, right? That's what I thought, and yet shortly after I'd started my blog one of my cheerleaders came up to me and said 'Teresa, I just wanted to tell you that you are not an aspiring ARE a writer. I do a lot of reading, and consider myself to be extremely critical, and you have it, you are a writer."

The confidence meter soared off the mark. Occasionally I replay those words, when I need to motivate myself to break out of my pattern and get going again. My dad might say that it shouldn't matter that she feels this way, and yet it made all of the difference for me. So, that begs the question, if a friend telling me I'm a writer can increase my confidence so drastically what would happen if I said it, believed it, owned it?

So starts the mantra. "I'm Teresa Thomas, and I am a writer. I'm a writer. I can write. I love to write. Teresa Thomas the writer." Believing it, has driven me to commit to writing in this blog faithfully again, and once I get into a good routine here, I may even work on some of those other pursuits that have been collecting dust. Owning of that phrase or series of phrases, is what prompted me to change my blog header to make it reflect the style of the many writer/author blogs which litter the web.

It's scary, taking this leap, but I believe that I've made big strides this month, understanding what inflections cause my self doubt to rage, and taking hold of both my dads idea of a writer and the idiots idea of it, putting them together in a sort of mangled ball and simply putting this new school of thought into action. The validation I've received from my friends/cheerleaders, along side the newly added praises of my husband, are safeguarding my heart so that when that self doubt comes rushing into the room charged, angry, ready to attack, I am ready and able to stand strong with a tight tush that can withstand the worst abuse. These poor women probably feel like their efforts and words have been fruitless because I've drifted and allowed myself to enter that starvation phase that is not writing, so many times. But I assure you, them, and the Lord, they have not. I'm relying on those words greatly right now.

Teresa Thomas,
A Writer

I hope you will join me next Friday for my On Writing post tentatively titled "It's 5 O'clock Somewhere"