Sunday, December 14, 2014

The things she says...

Mommy, God controls everything, right? -Teagan
Yes, He does, T. -Me
And He knows everything, right? - Teagan
Yes, Teagan, He does. -Me
So, I guess He knows when its best for us to go to bed because He turns off the sun, huh? -Teagan

I love the mind of my almost 5 year old. Oh Teagan...sweet sweet Teagan. To think so concretely about our God. How the hustle and bustle and chaos of life just gets in the way. Can you imagine the simplicity of just believing? Without putting in our own preference to what it "should be" and engaging in the opinions of the world? How I often long for that innocence and just matter of factness. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Funny thing, weather.

Y'all, I have not blogged since July. Life happened. Full time job happened. One late night a week happened. A new deck happened. More time with my family happened.

It was needed time away. Needed time to put my priorities back in order. It was time to live my life, our lives, for real instead of at the need for a blog post.

There is something about fall that makes me want to do all the things. Like eat three apples a day, run and run and run, drink too much coffee, snuggle my girls while wrapped under a blanket reading a book, kiss my sweet husband a little longer, sleep with the windows up, and campout in the backyard (or somewhere else).

Fall is my favorite. It's just begun. I just wish it would linger as long as possible.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Warm rains in NC.

Rainy storm-less days are few and far between when you live in North Carolina. Most of the time the rain is accompanied with thunder and lightning. When we get the treat of having just a warm summer rain we try to make sure we take advantage of it. 

Teagan is our little dancer; she loves everything about dance and movement of her body. However, you have to catch her on a day where her shyness has momentarily left the building or when she doesn't know you're watching her.  I love to catch her when she thinks nobody is watching because there is something so innocent and precious about the rawness and the vulnerability and the freedom. 

Kyra Mae is our fearless snuggler. She continues to test her independence as long as Josh or I are in her direct line of sight. She is also trying to figure out who she is apart from Teagan while wanting to be like Teagan. It's so funny how early it happens. It's in subtle ways but it's happening and it has been interesting to watch how she maneuvers through her latest challenge.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Kyra Mae

Y'all, can you believe this girl? I can't even get over her sometimes. 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Mothers Day.

Mothers Day 2014. 

These are the women of my family. Each of us are stubborn and bull-headed. Sometimes we are stubborn and bull-headed towards each other. However, we are family and we are fiercely devoted to one another. I am thankful for the way God has made us incredibly different but I am more thankful for the ways He has made our hearts so similar. From our hearts to yours. 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Pinky toes.

When is the last time you thought about your pinky toe? Other than to complain there isn't enough toenail to paint or the last time all your foot except your pinky toe got through the threshold of the door? If you're anything like me, other than those instances my pinky toe doesn't even cross my mind. Thing is, the pinky toe is a pretty important part of the body.  The pinky toe helps the body to balance. The pinky toe also functions autonomously from the other toes but is a necessary part. 
Our Pastor spoke this morning on Ephesians 4 and the parts of the body of Christ's church. This is one of those passages I've read and heard pastors speak on a lot. Every time I've heard it I have had myself as the main character. My take away from the passage has been more about what gift have I been given. I've not always thought about it in terms of service of the body.  
This morning, I heard it a new way: How I seek Jesus and how I use the gifts God has given me directly effects my sisters and brothers in Christ. If I am not utilizing those gifts given to me, if I am not spending time with the Lord, if I am not seeking Him then it directly effects the body. However, the body is NOT dependent on me. I, like that pinky toe, function autonomously from the body and the body can function without me but it works better if I'm doing my job.  Honestly, I never thought about how those days where I am "too busy" to dig into the Word effects how I relate to the church family.
This passage also triggered a response of thanks in me and the drive to do more thanking. I know there have been times in my life where I was serving in the behind the scenes jobs and often felt forgotten or unimportant. And while serving is never supposed to be about affirmation of self, it is nice to hear a sincere thank you every now and then. Satan also used those times of feeling forgotten to dig in to my head and heart that I am not needed. My emotions have always been a tunnel to the feelings of despair for me and satan has used that tunnel several times over the years.  That being said, when is the last time you told your kid's Sunday School teacher thank you? What about those sweet people who take care of the coffee in the morning? Also, do you know how time consuming it can be to set up the AV system and make sure the power points go smoothly with the songs as well as the pastors sermons? We also have people who restock the peppermints in the bowls and people who make sure there is toilet paper in the bathrooms. Our worship team works hard to maintain their craft and the decorating and the esthetics don't just happen. So, I'm challenging myself and you to thank somebody within your church sincerely and specifically in the next week or so. Whose in? 

Monday, April 28, 2014

Funny thing, 30.

It's almost May (really, y'all?) and I turned 30 in February. I've never been a "omgoodness, my _____ birthday is coming!" person and 30 was no different. However, it struck me the other day that I do actually feel like a grown up now. I wanted to share somethings I've learned about myself and my life in general. 

1) I'm not 20. Or 23. Or even 28. I need to remind myself of that sometimes. My 30 year old self is not in the place where I can just get up and go. I have two sweet girls and an incredible husband that depend on me. Is that a burden sometimes? Honestly, yes. There are times when I wish I could just be driving down the road and head somewhere, leaving inhibition in the wind. However, after a few days I have no doubt that I would have this aching in my heart because I knew away from them is never where I'm supposed to be. That lesson leads me to the next. 

2) I am still Rici. Yes, I am proudly Josh's wife and Teagan and Kyra's mom but I am still Rici and that is okay. I am allowed to still pursue my dreams and be an individual but I refuse to do so at the expense of my family. It has been a learning curve trying to figure out what that looks like. I've had to say no to some things that I thought I wanted to do but time with my family won out. I've also had to say yes to some things for a little while because my family is still top priority.  

3) It's taken me 30 years to realize what Josh and I try to instill in our girls daily. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I have struggled for years with my body image because I have sought out what I thought was good and pretty and right in places that I shouldn't. I've sought out my identity in what I assume others think is good and pretty and right. After 30 years, I've almost got it. I've known and heard my whole life to find my identity in my sweet Savior but I've never been able to leave my heart there. Finally, I am almost there. I have days where I see somebody or something and my pride measures me up to the Victoria's Secret models but more days than not an advertisement is not where I seek my identity anymore. 

4) The idea of friendship and community changes as you get older. This one has been a little difficult for me to swallow. Again, my head has kind of known that but my heart has been slow and reluctant to follow. My friendship definition (perhaps it's partly the extrovert in me as well) has been to spend as much time together (aka all the time) as you can and take a lot of pictures and basically be each others life line. When you have kids, the phrase "all the time" no longer applies (or at least for me and the moms I'm friends with). "All the time" becomes "whenever possible" and that isn't always often. One of my dearest friends that I've been friends with since elementary schools is an example. We have families that love each other dearly and want to spend time together but we only see each other every month or every other month. Not because we don't want to see each other but because we have jobs and we have families and we have different churches. But if one of us needs something, we're there. We're praying for each other. We're texting or calling. We're still very much friends and I forsee that always being the case. I've also got a group of sweet ladies whom I've grown very close to from church. Friendship looks different for us too; our commonality, the thing that has brought us together is Jesus. I've befriended ladies through church I might not otherwise come in contact with and boy am I glad. Friendship at this time in my life is not bad it's just different and once my heart caught up with my head, I am realizing more each day just how blessed I am. 

5) Marriage is hard. I didn't marry my best friend. I am now married to my best friend. The beginning of our marriage was difficult to say the least. Over the last almost 7 yrs of being husband and wife I have learned the numerous reasons why Josh and I just fit. We have grown to know each other and we've grown to realize where he is strong and I am weak and vice versa. He has become everything I could ever imagine wanting in a best friend and so much more, except he hates pictures but we're working on that one...

6) Embrace the natural. I've never really been a make-up and fix your hair girl but boy have I tried. I've reached a point in my life where I'm okay with not being that girl. I don't know how to put on eyeliner and make it look un-Halloweeny and I'm still figuring out what to do with the natural wave/curl hybrid of my hair (think Hermione Granger in the first two HPs mixed with a beach bum). I'm okay with that. I will continue to pin stuff on Pinterest and occasionally attempt them and occasionally get frustrated but for the most part I like my 5 minute routine. I asked Josh the other day on the way to church if he wished I was a "make-up and hair girl" and he gave me a very honest "no". He enjoys when I play dress up for date night but he'd much rather me stay the girl he fell in love with. The one who throws on tinted moisturizer and mascara and runs out the door. I'm completely okay with being that girl. 

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014


Teagan and "Nick-Nick"

I shared some about this picture on Instagram earlier but I felt like I didn't do it justice. A few months ago Teagan was chased by a dog that lived (they moved, we didn't kill her, just FYI) on our road. She was indeed a puppy in every sense of the word. She was playful and rambunctious and didn't listen to a word anybody said to her; including the word STOP. We were playing out in the yard one pretty fall day and the pup "came over to play" (she was always loose). Teagan apparently looked like the most fun out of us four and so the pup decided a game of chase would be best. She jumped to get Teagan running and Teagan ran. Teagan ran and the pup followed her thinking it was truly a game of chase, except Teagan was petrified and screaming and crying the entire time. I had Kyra in my arms and Josh started toward her after we realized she was terrified and not doing her fake "I'm having so much fun I'm going to scream bloody murder" cry. Thankfully I married a man whose legs are as long as I am tall and he got to her quickly but it felt like it took him years to rescue our sweet girl. I was in tears as Josh swooped her up to comfort her. Since then she has had a severe fear of dogs both small and large. On Saturday, it seemed like some of that fear dissipated and all was right with the world. Teagan loved on Nick-Nick the entire day, making sure that anytime he passed she rubbed him or told him she loved him. Once again, tears came to my eyes as I said a little "Thank You".

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

"Creamsicle smoothie"

Does this not look delicious, bring on Summer good, y'all? I took a mental health day on Friday and was able to play in the kitchen a little bit. I got back from yoga (over TWO hours!! it was glorious) and wanted a snack. All we had were some peaches and mangos and oranges so I went with it.

"Creamsicle smoothie"

* 1/4 cup of plain yogurt
* 3 splashes of unsweetened almond milk
* 1/2 cup frozen peaches
* 1 mango
* the juice of one medium orange (or orange juice would work)
* 1 big tablespoon of honey
* Add ice as needed for texture
* Add zest if you want a little lovely extra

Enjoy and tweak to taste!

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Saturday, March 15, 2014

We'll get there...

Kyra Mae turned 2 in October. It's March and I feel like she is a week away from three already. She is tall like her daddy and sassy like her mommy and that makes for a deadly combination. Right now we are trying to combat allergies and hitting. Her tantrums give Teagan's a run for their money but her passion for love just oozes out of her pores. She is definitely strong willed and not easily "defeated" and I pray that Josh and I are able to restrain that will without destroying it.

Teagan is freshly four...teen. She is truly coming into her own and it is proving to be a difficult transition. We've discovered that for both girls the beginning of "their year" is always the most difficult but the second half is usually much better. Teagan is emotionally driven, just like me, which has made for an interesting combination when it comes to tantrums (hers, not mine). Teagan is extremely smart which makes it hard sometimes when her emotional level is not the equivalent of her intellectual abilities. So, both Josh and I have to be careful when it comes to our expectations of her. Some days we get it right enough for a dance in the end zone and others we should probably be sent to the showers. Teagan is kind and loving and currently loves all things dance and all things doctor related. We are at Josh's parents house and Teagan wants to help grandpa give the cows their shots (my in-laws recently sold their chicken farm but kept the cows). 

The next few months are going to be touch and go as far as emotions go. This morning was rough and I'm still recovering from the drama but Josh provides respit for me when he sees the look of defeat and need for rest in my eyes and I am so thankful for him. We'll get there...Lord willing, we'll get there...

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Sunday, February 9, 2014

I don't want to know Jesus. Ever.

I can imagine your reaction right now. Perhaps your eyebrow raised (my right one goes up) or your head is tilted or you leaned into the computer screen or your phone with your brow furrowed to make sure you read the title of the post correctly. Just give me a minute to explain though because after you finish reading you might just agree with me.
We are going through the book of Mark; specifically this morning we went through Mark 6. This morning Mark 6:1-6 jumped out off the page and did a little dance on my heart. This is a passage that talks about familiarity with Jesus. Like hometown, watched Him grow up and work hard with His earthly father as a carpenter across the street from your parent's bake shop familiar. Jesus went back there; to a place where everyone still saw that timid, well-behaved, listen to His parents, kid. They did not have the image of a man who calms a storm, heals the sick, and sends demons into a herd of pigs that then runs over a cliff and drowns. They are so familiar with Him that they couldn't come to terms with who He really was/is. They were so familiar with Him that they missed Him. Y'all he marveled at their unbelief. MARVELED. They scoffed at this Man; the one they had watched grow up who was now proclaiming to be the Messiah they'd been preparing for. The Messiah that had been proclaimed in Isaiah; He was there right in front of them. Yet He marveled because they did not believe Him to be who He said.
 I don't want to be those hometown people but too often I am. I grew up with Jesus everywhere; in my books, on my t-shirts, on my pencils and on my wrists. I got gold stars and awards at camp because I "memorized" the most Bible verses. I "knew" Jesus; He was familiar to me.
I don't want to know Him anymore. I want to learn Him, continuously. I don't want to be familiar with Jesus. Familiar in this particular context meaning complacent, meaning never seeking truth, meaning making my Jesus marvel.
I don't want Jesus to marvel at me in the way He did the people of His hometown. So, if it takes me not "knowing" my Jesus then so be it.

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Sunday, January 26, 2014

Starting over.

A few months ago, I basically put my running shoes in the closet and looked at them with disgust every time I walked in the closet. I thought I was over the fact that my IT band became my nemesis during my first marathon and that I'd had to bow out, not so gracefully, 10 miles before the finish line. And physically, I believe I was good a few weeks after. However, I did not take into account the psychological and emotional toll that failure would take on my body. I thought I was going to just bounce right back into training but that was not the case. It was not until the last few days that I felt even close to prepared to start again. And I am finding out that is exactly what I'm doing. Starting over. It's not easy and it feels almost like I've never ran before. However, days like today, made me remember what my body is capable of. My body is ready to get back on the proverbial track but most importantly I think my emotions and my pride have healed enough to start over. And start over we will do...

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Oh conviction.

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you wallowed? Where you felt that nothing was right, everything in your life was turned against you and everybody else was better off than you? When you turn to everything that isn't going to help? I had one of those weeks. I was angry and jealous and impatient and I was downright nasty. It breaks my heart to type those words but I've never shielded this blog from the truth and I don't intend to now.
This morning I went into church angry and jealous and just eh. When I left, conviction had grabbed my heart and a wave of peace had washed over me like a summer rain. I sang the whole way home. We're going deeply through the book of Mark until Easter. This morning Pastor Brian was talking about how Jesus calls, teaches/forgives, and heals. He spoke to the paralytic that was lowered from the rooftop for healing, out of his faith and the faith of his friends. He spoke about how Jesus told the man his sins were forgiven and not to be healed. He spoke about Jesus being more concerned about our deepest issue which is our heart. Pastor Brian also talked about things getting in the way of us hearing the call from being fishermen to fishers of men. That friends, that one hit me in the face. The way I handle and feel about my week is ninety-nine percent contingent on how much time I am using to seek out my sweet Jesus. This week I just buried my head in the sand and boy could I tell, as could my husband and my children.  How can I hear the call the Lord has on my life if I have my head buried in the sand? So, this week I am challenging myself. To keep my head out of the sand, at least to the point my ears are sticking out enough to listen.