Auld “Lange” Syne

There’s nothing like adding a new member to your family to make a year memorable. Add in a trip to the beach with a four-year-old and an infant, starting a rigorous new Bible study, selling our first home, moving, and starting the building process…2015 held so many treasured, blessed, exhausting moments. If I’m being honest, I had to look at pictures just to remember what we did this year! The lack of sleep is getting to me, people! Fortuntely, my 8-month-old has FINALLY started sleeping through the night. Most of the time. (cue the Hallelujah chorus) I can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store but I’d like to catch my breath first. That’s how life works, right?!

I’m not usually one to make resolutions. They’re either unattainable, unmet or uninspired. I remember a particular year in middle school that one of my resolutions was to “wear crazy eyeshadow colors. like yellow.” Yikes! Thankfully, that never happened!

This year, in an effort to simplify my life and streamline my thoughts, actions, belongings, & body (HA!)–I figured some goals should be set in place. All too often, I muddle through the day as a stay at home mom. I feel overwhelmed and underwhelmed all at the same time. If I’m being honest, some days I wake up looking forward to bedtime. When bedtime rolls around, I feel disappointed that I didn’t accomplish more than keeping everyone fed and safe. I know being home with my babies is my greatest ministry right now. There truly is no where else I’d rather be and I’m beyond thankful. I think it’s important; however, to acknowledge these feelings and have a game plan for combating them.

Putting those goals here for all to see should hold me accountable! I know I won’t be able to accomplish everything on this list; however, it is a reflection of the person I’d like to be. And in keeping with the goal of giving myself grace, I’m going to try not to stress over the things that aren’t crossed off my list!

 

Mom/Wife Goals

  • Cook more often
  • Ask for help before losing my mind
  • Plan more dates
  • Actually play with my kids
  • Give and receive grace
  • Let go of guilt (particularly mom guilt)
  • Laugh! Stop being so serious 24/7

Family Goals

  • Take more pictures of the four of us
  • Learn & memorize scripture
  • Eat healthier
  • Be more active
  • Simplify our belongings–only keep things we love and use regularly

Personal Goals

  • Give myself permission to say “no” to things that I don’t want to do and “yes” to things that I do want (sounds simple, yes?)
  • Create–just for the love of it
  • Daily quiet time
  • Stop being ruled by a fear of failure
  • Exercise 3x/week even if it’s just 20 minutes of stretching/yoga
  • Utilize a daily schedule to make better use of my time and energy
  • Designate time to spend by myself recharging

 

For someone that doesn’t usually participate in New Year’s Resolutions, that sure looks like a lot! I think it will be interesting to review these at the end of 2016 to see what I accomplished. What are your goals for 2016? I’d love for you to leave them in the comments!

 

 

a reminder to live

 

 

Photo May 02, 7 45 31 PM

This boy loves his Poppa and riding through the pastures in Daddy’s truck.

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He loves making wishes.

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And picnics with his Jon Jon and SuSu.

PicMonkey Collage

He loves sitting on the counter and prolonging bedtime.

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And hanging out in the shop. (pre-haircut!)

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And hanging on Mommy’s legs.

 

 

He just loves life.

This boy of mine reminds me to live–to see things for more than they are. The way his eyes light up at the simplest things reminds me to slow down. All too often I’m reminded that tomorrow is not promised to us. We can make great big plans for the future but, friends, we’ve got to relish today. We’ve got to live more abundantly. Don’t let the enemy creep in and tell you that you’ll have more, do more, be happier down the road. Cling to the truth that He has lavished His grace upon us. Now is the time to allow yourself to really live! Start today.

 

 

cutting corners

All too often I rush the bedtime routine. I find myself cutting corners, reading one less Golden book, trying to convince my three year old that we aren’t going to rock in the rocking chair tonight even though we are “supposed to”, thinking about 50 other things I need to get done before bedtime, etc. Sometimes I’m at my wits end because the day has left me utterly exhausted and I just need some time to myself. Other times, on the rare occasion that my husband is home at bedtime, I’m trying to get my little one to bed to have some couple time before mommy and daddy both fall asleep.

But tonight, I listened to Remi when he told me he wanted me to rock him. I held his little feverish body tight and I prayed out loud for healing over him. Seeing my son sick or hurting always breaks my heart. In the stillness of the moment I held him tight and stroked his hair. I whispered over and over again how much I loved him. He quietly listened and snuggled in. I began to think about all the things that I really haven’t allowed myself to think about. You know–like when someone hurts you, or a circumstance brings you to your knees and you just can’t understand. I feel like I’ve been hit with a couple of those lately. They’re bearable because I don’t allow myself to think of them. But if I’m being honest with myself, and with you, when everything is still and quiet, I’m reminded just how much it stings. In a way, I’m grateful that Remi didn’t feel well tonight and asked me to rock him. It reminded me to hold him a little tighter–life is SO incredibly precious.

Life also hurts. It knocks you down. It whispers in your ear that you’ve failed yet again. It breaks your heart and tells you that you’ll never heal. These are lies straight from the enemy–the devil himself.

In the dark, still corner of a messy toddler bedroom, we rocked and I had a talk with Jesus. I allowed Him to chisel at my hardened heart–my greatest defense against feeling something. I couldn’t think of a better parallel: a mother holding her son and a Father holding His daughter. God hates to see his children hurting just as I hate to see my own child hurting. We nurture our children, comfort them, wipe their tears. How many times has God patiently waited on me to turn to Him so he could do the same for me? Why do I find it so hard to surrender whatever semblance of control I think I have and just lean on Him? I can’t do it on my own. I’ve tried a thousand times before yet He continually extends grace. When I try to take the reigns and cut corners with Christ, I end up hurting myself and hurting God. It’s a lose-lose situation. My only option in this earthly life is to fully rest in Him.

 

You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in your word.
Psalm 119:114

 

 

decisions, decisions

Decisions. We all have to make them. Easy ones, hard ones and all of those in between. One thing I hate most about making impactful decisions is the fact that I can’t please everyone. Ultimately, it all boils down to what is best for my family. Lately, I’ve been spreading myself thin. I know there are people out there that are far busier than I, but “busy” is not what I’m after. In fact, the glorification of busy drives me a little bit crazy. Some people are great at juggling–I’m not one of them. I just want to simplify.

As many of you know, I’ve been working at Sephora and freelancing {working for myself} as a makeup artist. I’ve encountered some confusion by others pertaining to what each job entails and how they are related. Read more on that here. All of that craziness paired with the crazy of Jarrett’s job and raising a little boy has made me feel a little mad. It’s do-able. I get it. I’ve done it for 6+ months. It’s definitely helped us pay off some debt and save up some money but is it worth it? Maybe not.

I’m a perfectionist. It’s a great trait to have in my line of work, but maybe not so much of a reality for someone that’s trying to balance family life as well. Let’s face it, I’m really good at focusing all of my efforts on one thing and giving all of my other duties the leftovers. I don’t want my family or my job(s) to have less than my best. I want to simplify my life so that I can be fully engaged in everything I do. Unfortunately, this means making the decision to leave Sephora.

I first learned that Sephora was coming to Longview last August. A friend and fellow makeup artist contacted me, told me her friend was going to be the Beauty Leader of the store and asked if I might be interested in becoming a Product Consultant. The thought of going back to work scared me. I’d been a stay-at-home-mom for two years {with occasional freelance jobs} and didn’t want to go back to work anytime soon. And then I thought of the opportunities. Jarrett was in locomotive engineer school at the time so his paychecks were significantly smaller. Maybe this seemingly random job opening was God’s way of showing me how I could help my husband with his financial burden. I have always enjoyed shopping at Sephora so it seemed like the pros were adding up. In fact, I’m not sure if “enjoyed” is an accurate description for how I feel about Sephora. My cousin Whitney is probably the only person that knows about my love for the store {bless her heart!} due to enduring many painful {for her} hours within it’s iconic black and white striped walls. So I took the plunge. Working at Sephora has truly been one of the greatest learning experiences of my life. I’ve learned so much about the beauty industry, increased my skill set, and created friendships. I cannot say enough good things about the company and the girls I’ve worked with. I’m sad to be leaving my team but I’m excited to condense my workload.

So the question is: What will I be doing now?
  1. Spending time with family. Family is one of the most important things in my life and children are only young once. You can’t turn back time. I don’t want to look back in a few years and regret not being there for Remington in these formative years of his life.
  2. Cleaning up the house that I’ve let go for the past 6 months. Kidding. Sort of.
  3. Growing my business, God willing. This is an important season for me: weddings, proms, banquets, etc. Fortunately, I will be more available to my clients and I can’t wait to see where that takes me!
  4. Getting back in the Word. I don’t make any excuses for letting my relationship with my Maker fall by the wayside. However, I have desperately missed my Thursday morning women’s Bible study. Since Remi is in Mother’s Day Out on Tues/Thurs, those are the days I’ve been working at Sephora. I can’t wait until the next Bible study starts up and I can go!

I’m not leaving right away. I will finish out the month of April at Sephora and it will be bittersweet.

I am so thankful for my incredible husband and family that support my decisions. I’m just so overwhelmed with God’s goodness and concern for me. He knows the desires of our hearts and He cares for me {and YOU} always. That has been so evident in my life. I’m completely undeserving yet He loves me anyway. I can’t wait to see what the future holds!

xoxo, Kelsey

 

that’s the good stuff

I started writing this post about a week ago. I struggled with deciding if I should even post it. I didn’t want to let anyone know that I’d been going through anything. It’s so much easier to pretend things are great. But that’s the problem with our social media obsession–we think things are just fine with everyone. We feel abnormal if our life isn’t perfect. I want this blog to uplift people. This is where I tell my story–where I share the things I’ve experienced. That is what this heart needs. To share, to vent, to learn. That’s what this is all about.

Soooo if the creative arts don’t spark your interest or you’re not too keen on reading about the discovery one’s self, this post is probably not for you. Jarrett, you’re totally excused from reading this one! ;)

cre·a·tive

krēˈātiv
adjective
1. relating to or involving the imagination or original ideas, esp. in the production of an artistic work.
  • (of a person) having good imagination or original ideas.synonyms: inventive, imaginative, innovative, experimental, original, artistic, expressive, inspired, visionary, enterprising, resourceful
noun informal
noun: creative
1. a person who is creative, typically in a professional context.
 

I’ve struggled with myself for a long time—with thinking I’m not good enough–wondering what is enough? The enemy has played upon my insecurities for far too long and I’m starting to figure it out. This post is about that discovery and then some. If you’ve ever dealt with that same struggle, I hope you’ll keep reading.

I’ve loved the arts for as long as I can remember. I’ve always looked for ways to exercise my God-given abilities in some creative outlet: I danced. I sang. I played piano. I played the trumpet. I made jewelry. I wrote. I drew. I painted. I took pictures. I did makeup. I stitched. I crafted. I love all of these things. They each make up a tiny piece of me that can never be taken away. But I never considered myself good. I never thought I was creative enough or interesting enough or inspired enough to create something that someone else could enjoy. I did these things for me, of course; but I wanted to create something that someone outside of myself would love. I never once thought that maybe I wasn’t seeking the right audience—I just thought I wasn’t creating the right things. So I stopped. I stopped creating. I stopped thinking about creating and I lost a little part of my happiness. Now, I can see the bigger picture.–bigger than East Texas. It excites me to know that my work can travel farther than I ever could. Knowing that someone in another country is viewing my blog, for example, is so awesome to me. However, it’s not about my recognition–it’s about making HIS name known. My blog has a platform {however small it may be} to tell someone about Christ and I pray that He is always at the center of each one of my endeavors. With that being said, here are a few things I’ve learned along this journey:

  • When you stop worrying about how things are “supposed” to be, you can start creating something that’s worthwhile.

  • Stop apologizing for the things that you love.

  • Learn to let yourself be vulnerable.

Anyone that has any kind of talent and puts it out there for the world to see is putting themselves in an extremely vulnerable position. If you fail, at least it means you tried. If someone else doesn’t like what you do–WHO CARES? You should be creating things that YOU love. That’s the good stuff…the stuff that matters. Do things that make your heart happy! Creativity aside, I feel like these little bits of “wisdom” {for lack of a better word..I’m so not calling myself wise!} can be applied to so many aspects of life:

Family: every single family is different. Just because you’re not a Pinterest-ing, stay-at-home, home-schooling, fashion-blogging, every-single-meal-cooking mom does not mean you’re not a great mom. Just because you don’t send your child to a private school or make scrapbooks to document each month of your child’s life or make all of your child’s clothes does not mean you don’t love your kiddos! You have to find what works for you and your family. There is no right or wrong. Stop comparing yourself to other people. Remember that everything is not what it seems–people choose what they put on the internet. The rest can be pretty messy. Trust me.

Fashion: this goes back to the creative thing. Style is something so personal and expressive that no two people should have the exact same look. It’s one thing to be inspired by someone’s style but it’s another thing to completely copy it. Be yourself. Don’t buy things just because they’re trendy or popular. Buy things that you love–things that you know you’ll wear for years to come. Guess what…I still wear clothes from high school! I have some really great pieces that have held up well over the years and the best part is I still love them. When you buy into the trends you’re wasting your money. Do you really want to sink your hard earned money into a new wardrobe every season because it’s trendy? I know I don’t! Stick with what you love. Don’t let your own personal style be defined by someone else or by what’s on the runway. If you must have that tribal print top {or other fashionable item} search at places like TJ Maxx and Target. Don’t sink your money into something you know you won’t wear that often anyway. Look for bargains and shop clearance racks. Shop your closet, shop your mom/friend/grandma’s closet. You would not believe the things I’ve found in my Nanny’s closet. Just a little Macklemore style. Ha! It’s way more fun to find a bargain on something and then save that cash treat yourself to a latte. Am I right?

Faith: I will never, ever, ever apologize for what I believe. I will never apologize for loving Jesus. I will not be quiet about a gracious, loving God that has redeemed me. I am REDEEMED! I can’t keep something like that in. I pray that I can fully understand the power of that statement. I’m feeling quite vulnerable as I write about this, but I’m also feeling confident. Confident that someone needs to read this. I don’t want to be shy about my faith. I want to share it. I want to obsess over my relationship with Jesus before I even think about my first cup of coffee in the morning. I want to encourage others just as I have been encouraged. It’s easier said than done, but I know that’s what God wants for me and for you. I also know that when you pray for the will of God it will happen every. single. time. That’s encouraging!

Goodness gracious! If you stayed til the end, props to you. I always start out with an idea about where my post is going and before I know it, all of the million other thoughts in my head spill out onto the keyboard. Just imagine what’s going on inside this red head of mine 24/7! Yikes! And I’m pretty sure I just came up with a new tagline: Family, Fashion, Faith. Except I’m not fashionable. At all. Awkward. Maybe it’s a good tagline for someone else!

And because a post is not complete without a Remi picture….remi laugh remi sleep

As Remington would say, “See ya lata, addigatuh!”

Jesus, you’re all this heart needs

I really have no idea what I’m doing here. I never thought I would start a blog–heck, I didn’t even know what a blog was until I discovered Pinterest. Really? Really. So for those of you that are reading, here goes. I named my blog thisheartneeds for many reasons. One, it’s a partial line of a song. If you’ve never heard of Telecast you should definitely look them up. I’m pretty sure they disbanded years ago, but I had a wonderful experience at church camp worshipping with them live. I Just Need You is the name of the song I pulled from. It’s always stuck in my head as a wonderful reminder that the things I often say I “need” aren’t true necessities. I really only NEED Jesus. He supplies the rest. Two, My husband (we’ll call him J) always jokes that I don’t know the difference between wanting and needing something. I do, honestly. I’m not as bratty as he makes me out to be! It’s just that I really NEED that Starbucks latte to get through the day. KIDDING! Three, as a mother and wife, sometimes I just need a break. A break, and a cup of coffee, and to go to the bathroom by myself. Oh, and for someone else to sweep the floors and clean the toilets. Can I get an Amen?! It’s not that I don’t LOVE my family and my job as a homemaker/mom. It’s just the fact that I am human. I am selfish. I fall from God’s grace daily, and sometimes I just need to regroup. That’s what this blog is about; admitting my failures of the flesh and seeking God’s perfect will for my life and for my family. Sometimes, I won’t have a lot to say. Sometimes, I’ll be so full of words that I’ll start to ramble. I’ll try to keep it coherent.

Until next time,
K