Monday, November 24, 2014

My heart lately...

I'm sitting here in my big blue recliner with a hot cup of milk tea (anyone? yum! I was introduced in China!), reading my Bible and spending time with the Lord during a time that's honestly been really hard.

I haven't shared anything too deep lately because I like to keep things positive here on the blog.  But y'all, I'm going to be honest, the past 4 months have been pretty hard on us.  I feel like we have no room to complain and have been 100% provided for as God made everything happen just right and so perfectly in our move from Dallas to San Antonio.

But being here has not been as easy as I thought it would be.  Though I don't have any new friends yet, I do have a few friends from high school and college, yet I still feel lonely.  Everyone has their own busy lives which is totally understandable.  But my go-to, encouraging people are not here. They are in other cities - Dallas, Seattle, Plano, Irving.  I so appreciate them calling and texting, but I wish they were here.  I can't just go get dinner with them or grab a cup of tea and chill.  Note: I do have my parents and sisters here and that keeps me going and makes me glad that I'm here!

Moving comes with a bit of loneliness, I suppose.

I always thought this: "I could move to the other side of the world where I have no friends and love on the local people in the name of Jesus and I would be totally content because I have the Jesus!"  Well, isn't that what the apostle, Paul, constantly said he did.  Surely I could.

But I find myself in another city, only 5 hours from where I was before and close to family, yet I'm in tears often.  Sheesh...I'm so not as strong as I thought I was!  I'm almost mad at myself for not handling it well.

Enough of the sad stuff though...onto what God is teaching me...

So my favorite verse EVER is Romans 8:28 -

"And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."

God is supposed to be working for my good, right?!  I've always read that and thought it meant what I deem as "good".  What is "good" for me?  To be happy, to be comfortable, to have a good job, to have a happy marriage, etc.  But as great as those things are, they are not God's definition of good.

Let's back up a bit.  This has been my revelation today!  Look at verses 26 and 27.  They say this -

"And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness.  For example, we don't know what God wants us to pray for.  But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.  And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God's own will."

Bam!  Now go back and read verse 28 above.  This brings different meaning for me.  Verse 28 starts with "and" which means it's a continuation from what was said before.

1 // The Holy Spirit is praying/interceding for me!  It is so humbling to know that even when I don't know what to pray, the Holy Spirit is praying on my behalf for my good.  And God hears it and cares!

2 // The Holy Spirit isn't just praying anything, the Spirit is praying in harmony with God's will.  So this "good" we speak of, it's in accordance with God's will, not ours.  His view of "good" for us might not be what we were expecting.

I don't know why God has us down here yet but I do know that He's gotten us this far and is working for our good according to His will.  That's enough for me to have hope.

I know that as I dwell on this, my mood will be lifted just in knowing that God is at work here and cares about me.  And when I'm feeling lonely and don't know what to pray, the Spirit is praying for me.  Things won't always be like this.

Please don't get me wrong, I know they could be MUCH worse...I am SO grateful for what I have.  I'm just in a little funk.  Please keep me and my husband in your prayers.  We have hope for what God is doing!
Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Resolving Conflict in Marriage

Hey friends!  Today I'm talking about resolving conflict in marriage over at Sage the Blog as a part of Cassie's Equally Yoked marriage series!  It's been an AWESOME series so if you haven't read the other posts, you should catch up on them!



Hope you take a minute to click over there and read my post!  Have a wonderful, Wednesday!!!
Monday, November 17, 2014

My Christmas Wish List + Giveaway

Happy Monday, friends!  Sorry I was MIA last week.  It was a really busy one!  I'm getting used to the new job and new city and was taking care of a sick hubby.

HEY GIRL MOMS! (Or anyone who has a little girl in their life they want to spoil)  Don't miss the giveaway at the end of this post!

So...I shared this Christmas wish list with my husband this weekend and thought it'd be fun to share with you.  PLUS, I need your opinion on something!  Let's not mess around...let's get to it...


2015 Planner

This is where I need your help!  I'm trying to decide between these three planners.  I want to know your thoughts on them!  Have you ever had one?  What did you think of it?  Which would you choose?





















Crazy I don't have one, right?!


So that's it!  I'm not a big gift person but I get giddy thinking about getting these things.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

NOW for the giveaway!  Do you have a young daughter, a young niece, cousin, neighbor???  Today's giveaway would be the perfect Christmas gift for her!  

I heard about Scarlet Threads through Andrea at Mitchael Journey blog.  I fell in love with this company as soon as I read their ABOUT US section.  They believe that economic empowerment can prevent tragedies and fight back against injustice, specifically in China.  They are a fair trade company that employs people/families that need the work to support their families.  Love it!  Please check out the website!




Today, Andrea, Tiffany, Whitney and I, along with Scarlet Threads are giving away a little girl's apron.  It's handmade, adorable and helps support an awesome cause!

Andrea from Mitchael Journey || Tiffany from A Touch of Grace || Whitney from Southern Hope || Kelli from A Deeper Joy 



Good luck!
Friday, November 7, 2014

Happy Friday!

Happy Friday!  Just wanted to remind you to enter the $200 PayPal cash giveaway!  It ends this Sunday so make sure you enter today if you haven't already!


Have a lovely weekend, friends!  XOXOXO
Wednesday, November 5, 2014

October Favorites: Fall Edition

We're back with October favorites!  Mia and I host this link-up every first Wednesday of the month and we'd love for you to join!  Post about any of your favorites from the previous month - beauty, health, fitness, food, memories, etc.  Check out my previous month's posts here:


I've decided to choose some of Fall favorites this time!  Since it's finally not shorts weather here in Texas, it finally feels like fall to me.  I busted out my scarves for the first time this past week!


{RECIPES}

I recently made Paleo Pumpkin Muffins, a recipe posted by Aimee and they were delicious!  They're gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free.  I felt less guilty eating these than a big piece of pumpkin pie.


A recipe that I plan on trying this week is Tiffany's White Chicken Chili!  It looks amazing!  Perfect for the fall, right?!



{DRINK}

Last year, I found this Double Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix recipe through Jen.  It's better than anything store-bought and made from scratch.  I've been making hot cocoa this way as it gets cooler and I love it!


{DECOR}

Here are some of my favorite fall Pinterest finds.  Maybe I'll be able to do some of them next year since we're still getting settled into the rent house.






{STYLE}

Two fall looks that I totally wish I could pull off...




{OIL}

You know I have my favorite fall essential oil!  I don't know what I'd do without Young Living Thieves essential oil blend right now!  It's consists of cinnamon, clove, lemon, eucalyptus and rosemary.  It's known for supporting the immune system.  It helps keep away the winter "ickies".  I'm diffusing it almost every day right now and we haven't gotten sick!



Now please share your October favorites with us and link up below!  We'll keep the link up open through the end of the month so you can still do it if you didn't post today.

Can't wait to read them all! 

A Deeper Joy

Monday, November 3, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide + Giveaway!

Happy Monday, lovelies!  I hope you had a fabulous weekend!  Mine consisted of random stuff, but mostly importantly, I got to go to my parents' house on a whim for the evening! :)  You don't understand...I have NEVER been able to do that.  They were always 5 hours away.  That made me happy that we got to do that.

First off...here's your REMINDER!  This Wednesday is mine and Mia's Monthly Favorites Link-up!  We hope that you join us in sharing your October Favorites.  Share your favorite moments, recipes, workouts, beauty products, anything and link up!

Can you believe that the holidays are coming up?!  Well, I guess we just had a holiday but my favorite are Thanksgiving and Christmas!  Why?  Because we all need to remember to get grateful and we get to celebrate baby Jesus!

Today I'm sharing a Holiday Gift Guide with you from some lovely ladies!  These are great stores. You can get some awesome Christmas gifts from these stores using these discount codes.


Welcome to Cassie and Karissa's 2014 Holiday Gift Guide! Finding unique, thoughtful gifts during the Holiday season can be hard.  That's why we teamed up with some amazing small business owners to share a few beautiful gifts for each person in your life! We're even giving away $200 Paypal Cash so that that one lucky person can go on a little Christmas shopping spree. We encourage you to partake in the giveaway and to use the coupon codes below to get some amazing pieces! Happy Holidays!

For Her

Awl Snap. Awl Snap's leather goods are founded and forged in the wonderful city of Richmond, VA.  Boasting ridiculously soft leathers in rich earth tones, each Awl Snap product is created with attention to functionality, durability, and a slight nod to the quirkiness in all of us.

Receive 15% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14


Gertie & Baxter. Gertie & Baxter is a women's accessories line, hand crafted in downtown Los Angeles. Our line focuses on American girl style, specializing in headbands, scarves, boot socks and other accessories to keep you cute!

Receive 15% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14


The Posh Daisy. The {posh} Daisy started when I couldn't find that perfect hand stamped piece of jewelry that I had been looking for. I decided why not make my own? After that I was hooked.
My mom and I opened up our Etsy shop in 2011 and the rest is history. We love owning this little business together; we get to talk and laugh and create! Nothing better than that. Our collection is boho, shabby chic, and classic. Something for everyone, personalized, and one of a kind jewelry.

Receive 25% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14 

Fedeli Jewelry.  Fedeli jewelry was born out of a love for a necklace that belonged to my mother; the necklace is delicate, gold, and sits at just the right spot on my neck. I wanted to begin creating things that had an essence of my mother in them - beautiful, dainty, and captivating.

Receive 20% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14

 


For Him


Kith & Kin. Kith&Kin is a family of makers. It's been in our blood for generations. Our grandparents made our toys and quilts, our moms made our pajamas, and we fell asleep in beds our dads made. When we met, we fell in love and felt at home...and kept the making alive. We even made four kids! Now we make everything together.   We invite you to be apart of our family with our high quality, handmade pieces.

Receive 20% off all bags with the code GIFTGUIDE14


   For the Home/Office


Stamp Nouveau. In this internet filled world, finding a hand addressed card or letter in your mailbox is a special treasure! Our designer stamps are the perfect way to add your personal touch to all your outgoing treasures. This world needs more love letters!

Receive 15% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14



Cey Events and Design. CEY Events and Design was born out of a love for burlap, lace, and anything gold.  I love creating chic, affordable, and pops of glamour for any space. Items featured are burlap and gold pillows, state design pillows, gold foil prints, sequin hangers, and repurposed metallic items.

Receive 25% off orders of $30 or more with the code GIFTGUIDE14


FreeFolding. Freefolding is my studio brand of contemporary functional ceramic home-ware. I'm a one woman show; creating, making, and designing each piece single handedly. I love making vessels out of clay sheets. I investigate its options to be folded, closed and create a container. THe new ways to unravel traditional forms and to play with them are the force that attracts and motivates me forward. Though decliate and so fine-looking, my ceramic is amazingly practical, and can be used anywhere in the kitchen, being oven, microwave, and dishwasher proof.

Receive 20% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14


A Little Bit of Me. A Little Bit specializes in big bright blooms, custom illustrations, and #spreadjoyandhappymail cards to spread joy through snail mail!

Receive 20% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14

Modern Memo. Modern Memo creates original, handmade greeting cards with the use of modern calligraphy and heat embossing. The unique use of heat embossing gives the pattern a raised and textured look while also adding a sheen and vivid color. These cards are perfect for any occasion!

Receive 20% with the code GIFTGUIDE2014



For the Kids


Babysprouts & Company. Babysprouts & Company is a small-town handmade business specializing in baby accessories (teethers, pacifier clips) and apparel (leggings, harem pants).  We are a new company with a BIG dream! Our shop contains high-quality products with modern prints.

Receive 25% off with the code GIFTGUIDE14



Now for the free money! Thanks to these beautiful ladies we have $200 PayPal Cash to giveaway. Be sure to check them out to gain lots of entries!

Winning entry will be verified. Winner must have a valid PayPal account for money to be transferred.



a Rafflecopter giveaway
Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween, friends!  Have a safe, fun weekend!!

A few photos from last weekend...



Come back on Monday for a REALLY REALLY awesome giveaway!  Think Holiday. Gifts. Free Money.