A few weeks after Will's first birthday David and I were completely surprised by a positive pregnancy test. We were delighted to hear a heartbeat at our first appointment. A few days ago we were shocked and heartbroken to learn that the baby's heart was no longer beating.
I've written a bit on the blog about our experience over the past few days and what God is teaching us through it. You can read it by clicking the link in my profile.
"The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord." Job 1:21 To him alone be the glory and honor forever. Amen.
Helping my kiddos memorize the names of the books of the Bible. Quick and easy memory tool: We just typed them up, cut them out two-by-two, glued them to blank cards, and added a ring.
The creative in me usually wants to wait to put something to use until I can design it beautifully, but I'm learning to find the beauty in simple function, too. After all, #itdoesnthavetobeperfecttobebeautiful , right?
Ava thinks we should make a pretty version of these for the shop, now that we did make our functional set. Your thoughts?
We're still working on several To Choose Joy kids' Scripture memory card sets, but the Lord has been keeping them on hold in His hands. It's been an adventure in patience and in trusting Him for His timing, rather than pushing through in my anxious, hurried way that rears its head again and again. God is so good, and always wise, and His perfect way is always worth waiting for.
“I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.”
As I walked up to these beautiful flowers, my mind was instantly filled with these thoughts...
Usually the color RED is most associated with Love, which makes perfect sense considering the GREATEST ACT OF Love ever shown was the shedding of the precious BLOOD of Christ! He displayed the most sacrificial True Love as He hung on the cross, enduring immense pain with YOU being His motivation to continue until it was COMPLETE.
THE TRUEST OF ALL TRUE LOVES was IMMERSED, SATURATED, and COVERED in CRIMSON RED. ❤️❣️🌹
We are a week away from Retreat!! Repost this to invite your friends to join you! Learn all about Retreat at thrivemoms.com/retreat. Remember, it's FREE and ONLINE. Can't beat that! ⠀
Friday Introductions ✨
Hi Everyone. I’m Jess. I’m 29 (almost thirty- say what?!) and I’m a first-time momma to Landon and wife to my amazing husband, TJ. We live in Northern, NJ- about 45 minutes outside of NYC. I work full time as a Registered Nurse but on my free time I like to blog, enjoy photography and cooking. I take lotsss of pictures, if you can’t tell ;-) I love how each one tells a story and gives you a glimpse into someone else’s life. I like to live vicariously through all of your insta photos! I created my blog as an avenue to express my creativity and hopefully inspire you all along the way. Besides writing for my own blog, I also write for a female millennial blog called, Society Letters (@societyletters) and have another collaboration in the works (stay posted!) I hope that you all have an awesome Friday and bring on the weekend! 👊🏻[3 day weekend for me, SCORE!]
One of our favorite family date nights is heading to @wholefoods and getting lots of small portions of fun new foods to try. Then we head to the beach or a favorite park for a picnic. Last night we did a dessert picnic. It was awesome. What are some of your favorite family date ideas??? #familydatenight#wholefoods#picnic#beach
Today the first blossom opened on the blackberry bush that's been in my back yard far longer than I've lived here. Every year more fruit dyes my finger and lips purple. I want a faith like this. A faith that is patient, resilient, and bears good fruit.
The wait is almost over!
Have you been waiting to try Le-Vel Thrive until our new weight loss DFTs launch?
I am going to send out 3 packages to new, first time customers.
How do you get your hands on one? Order the tone pack (capsules, 2 boxes of our lifestyle mix) and I will send you your new weight loss DFTs!
Message me if interested!
Getting ready to plan your grocery list for next week? Nothing beats confidence when it comes to planning our meals. There have been so many times when I have entered the week totally lost as to what we would be eating, searching in the fridge hungry and getting angrier by the minute that nothing is available to eat! I HAD to get my stuff together and stop planning 21 meals a week (3 meals a day x 7 days a week! 😱) on the fly - that method is WAY too stressful.
That's why I created the Seasonal Meal Planner... I wanted JOY and I was willing to fight for it -- by simplifying alllll the mundane tasks of life, meal planning and cooking included. How about you? How do you fight for simplicity in the kitchen or otherwise? Tell me how 👇🏻👇🏻
Late night strawberry picking with these little men to start our #kempweekendadventures yesterday. 🙌🏻 Their squeals when we turned into the farm were alllll I needed to hear to make this mama heart feel at peace after a crazy long day of noisy boys!! 🙈🙈
*read as I'm literally scrolling through Pinterest for meal plan ideas, crunching budget numbers, and making a to do list ALL AT THE SAME TIME for the sake of the idea that if I do all these things, maybe then my life will be in perfect order. If your computer and your brain, like mine, have too many tabs open, close them out, shut it down, walk away. You can come back. You will come back. But right now you and I need a reminder that this isn't the stuff that matters most. - Krista.
I 💙 being a stay at home mom! I ❤️ making money from my phone! Even if Thrive didn't pay EVERY Tuesday i would still try and get people to fuel there body with the right amount of vitamins in 3 easy steps! Let's get the most out of Summer DM me ! 💁🏼
I'm "dealing with it". How many times have I said that? Today contributor @adrianjessenfit kicks my butt (always in the nicest of ways) when it comes to the approach called "dealing with it". I love this woman's words. I think you will too! (Link in bio.) #nomoredealingwithit#doaheadwoman 🌼
My sweet friend @faithandmountains drew this for me a few years ago. A scripture that has been so deeply knotted into my heart. Placed on display in our home so that we may always remember the posture of our heart.
I read this & think how much I'd love to live with that heart. One that is joyous whenever the roads become heavy & the burdens many. A heart that can see not the weight of trials or the sorrow that it is, but rather opportunity to sing of his glory. To shout to the world of how his love has molded us. Carried us. Held his close in all of his so sovereignty.
The word patience is also translated to steadfastness or endurance. It's Greek translation from Strongs reads "the characteristic of a man who is not swerved from his deliberate purpose & loyalty to faith & piety (acts of charity) by even the greatest suffering & trials." I am finding my love once again in the root of scripture.
This. This is the transformation I so long for. One that was carried within the hearts of Abraham & Moses. A faith so deep that they stayed the course of Gods will. For his is always far beyond ours of we would only trust. If we would only allow him to move. To mold. To show us a life of full surrender.
To be made perfect & complete.
By his definition.
By his will.
I think we can both sense the change in tides. Like seeing the clouds before the storm. Our hearts know the coming change in seasons.
These days we are left grappling to hold onto the peace of just us. Emotions spinning wild between apprehension & intention. Outbursts from little hearts confused by the newness of it all.
So here we are as soon as the dust settles. Every day we find ourselves embraced in this moment. Holding on to the stillness of us. Treasuring the days where nothing else exists. Oh my sweet little, there will always be room for you within my arms. Please Lord give us the time we need.
Wonderful night celebrating the mom's that all keep us afloat and make sure we don't loose our minds. Truly thankful for everyone who came out tonight we know it's a lot to get away, but happy you did!! @thrivemoms
When it comes to natural lighting situations in homes, you never know what your going to get. So I'm prepared with my flash to get that perfect lighting I need. But, oh my stars it could not get any better than this. I felt pretty lucky! Gorgeous home, @mrsamandagreco
These days I find peace in the quiet of morning, sipping Earl Grey tea, journaling, and reading my Bible before the rest of my household gets up. Pouring my heart out on paper... lifting my worries to the Lord... taking time to really listen in silence...these are my favorite mornings. I wish it were every morning, but my home gets loud early much of the time!
A few great women saw me at my best today. They saw me handle my wild child with impeccable patience, and do the "mom thing" the way it should be done.
I actually admire these women because they are who I try to emulate most in tough times. When our perfect angels turn into little humans, we have the opportunity to put on them what God put on us: grace, love, patience, mercy. I usually just yell.
But today, I did it right. And when these women commented on a job well done I immediately explained that I'm actually awful most of the time, providing several reasons for why I was able to do the right thing right then.
And then came the conviction.
And three things that hit me in waves as I drove home:
1️⃣If I could hold it together then, I could hold it together again. Wars are won one battle at a time.
2️⃣If someone pays you a kindness, accept it. We can know our failures and still celebrate the wins.
3️⃣I can always, always sense when realness is about to rain on our sunny day. Rather than decide I'm too tired to do my best, what if I set down my expectations and picked up an umbrella? Storms are actually pretty pleasant if you have the right gear.
All this to say: moms, I see you. You are doing a job that's loud and messy and heavy and holy all at the same time. I see you trying, but I also see you dodging grace. I see you denying your strengths and making excuses for getting it right! Let's do the work to always do better, yes, but let's not deny ourselves the opportunity to celebrate. Not one woman out there is doing it without trial.
There are some, however, who have a handle on what it takes to conquer life's little storms and they lead with big hearts and even bigger faith. Mine today were @kallilove @rthomp430 @angela.miller01 #mops#thrivemoms
Who are yours?
LOOK CLOSELY! Notice anything different with this picture?
How about 4 "W"omen doing what most won't! They've been on the road since 5:30 am.
Doing all the way to a LOCAL in Oklahoma City then, on their way to Dallas to FOCUS on their futures.
Success...it goes to those who do what other won't!
Prayer is so vital and so important in the life of every believer.
'Breathe' is a devotional journal found at the @llbshop that focuses on sustaining your life through prayer. Specifically, praying through the Psalms. I just love this quote from Martin Luther, 'to be a Christian without praying is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.' Wow. Just as you cannot survive in this world without breathing air into your lungs, you cannot survive spiritually without praying and staying close to the heart of God (llb)
I pray this devotional would bless you abundantly and I challenge you to take that next step in your prayer life. Your days will become purposeful and you will view the life God has crafted for YOU in a whole new way. Have a blessed Thursday 🌿
Can I be super honest for a minute? I stink at doing housework. Not only that, accomplishing a task always comes first in my mind over building up a relationship. So as a mom, what that can look like is: having piles and piles of dirty laundry everywhere and having to literally remind myself to get on the floor and play with my kids.
Lay it on me: how do you get the housework done? What's your secret? Also, if you're super task/goal oriented like me, how do you keep the relationship with your kids priority? 💁🏻#gimmeallthetips#layitonme
All of it - remembered not. The most horrid yuck you've ever done, are doing right now, and will ever do, forgiven. Every. Single. Time. How is that possible? How can someone believe that? Even we ourselves don't feel worthy of that kind of love. But God does. He sees you as worthy. Worthy of forgiveness and grace and mercy. Worthy of a love unlike anything this earth has to offer. Worthy of being crowned as an heir. Worthy of freedom and redemption and new life. It takes a softened heart to receive it and just a little faith to begin to believe there is a steadfast love like this that endures forever. Forgiveness freely given by the grace of God comes only through Jesus and by turning from our dark, deep yuck and stepping into eternal life. .
But if a wicked person turns
away from all his sins that he has
committed and keeps all my statutes
and does what is just and right, he
shall surely live; he shall not die.
None of the transgressions that he has
committed shall be remembered
against him; for the righteousness
that he has done he shall live. -Ezekiel 18:21-22 🌿
Someone has decided to give up napping just weeks before they get a brother. 😳 We have been trying to implement resting/quiet time but it hasn't been going very well. 😑⠀
Saying I have not handled this change with grace would be an understatement. I have cried real, exhausted tears. 😭🤰🏽🙈⠀
I would so appreciate prayers for grace and patience(!) today, friends. That despite all my physical discomforts and emotions, I would be able to find joy in this day and in this oh-so-crazy season of life! 💗⠀
We will be saying a family rosary today at lunch; how may I lift you in prayer today?