7.10.2020

SILENT NO MORE


These past 7 months I've been on a wellness journey, physically, mentally, spiritually. I've struggled, wrestled, fought and questioned all before I gave in. I was weak in all aspects. My mind, my body, my soul. I knew it, and God knew it. Every aspect of my life needed work and healing. I knew God was placing a calling on my life and I was afraid. I've been doing the work, putting in the work. I still have work to do, but God has answered questions, answered a mother's fervent prayers, even though life isn't perfect, he has shown me so many things and I am choosing to trust.

He has instilled a new bravery in me, a fire in my heart, a passion and a Holy anger for the innocent, for the hurting, for the vulnerable. There are still times I question, I ask, God is this what you want, is this really what you're calling me to share, and always I know the answer is the same. A resounding yes, a call to follow, to trust, a life he is calling me, us to. He has been placing words upon my heart and each time, the words come so quickly my fingers can hardly move fast enough to write them down.

So many people who are called to share the things I've felt placed upon my heart to share have been ridiculed, called crazy. The ones bringing dark to light, the ones fighting for freedom, for justice, for the innocent are slandered, made fun of... but if God is for us, then who can stand against us?

My family has chosen to follow a lifestyle that doesn't align with the agenda of mainstream culture. We have been removing things from our life, cultivating our hearts and pruning our lives, looking into the deeper story of so many things, and now my eyes are opened. I cannot go back to sleep now that I have seen the corruption with my own eyes, saw good things laid waste by evil. Saw the masses of humanity call evil good and good evil. Felt the war waging between God and satan, Heaven and hell, Good and evil. Saw how almost every aspect of our modern culture has been infiltrated with new age undertones and satanic symbolism. I will not be fooled by the trickery and lies anymore, and I will be shouting from the rooftops, bringing light and exposing the darkness.

Without Jesus we are all dead men/women walking, we are all blind until He brings us into the light. I spent the first few months of this year weak, questioning, until around mid April, I decided no more. I started strengthening every aspect of my life, my relationships, my soul, my body, my mind. I will forever be working on some aspects, I don't want to stop growing. I don't want to go with the flow, I want to make waves and swim against the current, only dead fish go with the flow. With every pruning comes new life, a new growth and I am a willing vessel. I want my prayer to be "here I am Jesus, use me".

These past few months have shown so undeniably who is for good and who is against good, who is awake and who is asleep, it has shown who has been awoken but refuses to take off the blindfold and to open their eyes to the bright morning light. Life has become so much more freeing since I finally accepted the calling placed on my life. At the end of the day, it will never matter how many followers I had, how many I lose or gain, but if I spoke truth and shared about my Saviour. What good is it to gain the whole world but lose your soul in the process?

At the end of my life, the number of likes I got on each post won't matter, it won't matter if I had 10 followers, 16,000 followers or a million followers on social media, it won't matter if my life appeared picture perfect, my words and actions are the things that are remembered and what will matter, it will matter if I share about Jesus or not, it will matter if I share the important things. My children aren't going to remember if I was liked by the popular people, they'll remember if I raised them right, to be good and kind, if I was a good example and instilled a good moral compass and an unwavering love of Christ in their hearts. They'll remember if I spoke up, and when it comes down to it, I need to be able to tell my children I did not stay silent.

7.09.2020

ROAR OF A MOTHER


They are the reason I fight. The reason I will never stop advocating. And while I advocate and fight for my own children, I'll do the same for yours. Not because I believe everyone should choose the same path and make the same decisions as us, but because I believe in freedom. Freedom for me and for you, my family and yours, your children and mine.

I believe every one deserves to know what they are putting into their bodies, to know the risks associated with what they are putting into their bodies and the bodies of their children, and I believe that everyone deserves the freedom of choice, to make informed decisions, the choice to say no if that's what is best for their family.

I believe the mothers who have cried out in desperation, trying to get their screams to be as loud as even a hint of a whisper in the ears of the sleeping. Why is it we believe women, but not mothers? The mothers whose children are gone, the mothers who's children are suffering. I believe them because my children have suffered too. I have been that mother, holding my children while they cry. I believe them because I too have suffered.

All because they said it was safe, they said it was effective, they said everyone does it, that it was recommended, they said that it was science and that it was settled, that there were no lasting side effects. Just asking questions has been frowned upon and made fun of. They have sold us a misinformed lie and we have been bought and sold by the highest bidders for far too long.

I advocate for all children, for all people, so that not one should have to suffer again, not one would have to suffer in silence anymore, afraid to be ridiculed and afraid of all of the people saying "it's normal". Suffering and sickness are not normal no matter how many times we have been told so and lied to. I advocate because nothing is truly one size fits all and where there is risk there must also be choice.

My fight may not always be a shout, it may at times be a word whispered in the wind and carried by the sea, a whisper dancing on the breeze through the forest, over the mountains and into the starry skies above. It may be a word spoken to a friend, a note silently left where a stranger, a mother might find it, but sometimes it may be loud.

A roar of a mother who will not be silenced, a roar of a mother who does not consent, a roar of a mother who calls the shots, a roar of a mother who stands her ground as she yells above the noise of a crowd to get someone, anyone to listen. I will fight until there is nothing left to fight. I will advocate until all the children are safe, until everyone is safe, because I do not consent.

6.24.2020

THE COOL KIDS

Are these kiddos the coolest kids or what? I mean, I may be a bit biased because I'm their mama, but still, they are some cool kids, and definitely cooler than I'll ever be. They're kids with hearts full of love, they're wild as the wind and free as the waves, and have styles all their own. Their style has evolved a bit recently to add in some beachy/skater vibes since both of them are skateboarding and surf obsessed, and Bella is learning how to skateboard... Feather 4 Arrow hooked us up with all of the coolest duds!


Let me start by saying, tacos are a HUGE deal around here, our entire family loves tacos, so when Bella saw this "taco time" tee from Feather 4 Arrow, she wouldn't stop talking about it and all the reasons she "needed" it, girlfriend loves her tacos. We paired it with these adorable rust colored corduroy "stay wild" drawstring shorts and she has been wearing the entire outfit around constantly since it arrived. Out to skateboard, to the lake, to town, on adventures, hiking, picnics, and of course while playing with legos at home.


For Bodhi, this "stay cool" tee could not be more perfect, it's super cute on him, and well, just fits his style, paired with these "line up" pin corduroy shorts (same fabric as the ones Bella has, so they kinda match which I LOVE), and the entire outfit could not be cuter. I've been reaching for it over and over just because I love it so much!

Both Bella and Bodhi LOVE hats, and thankfully Feather 4 Arrow has no shortage of them. Bella chose this "good times" hat, she literally wears it everywhere and with every outfit, she was wearing a gray and white striped pinafore dress yesterday with a white tee underneath and rocking this hat with it, she had it on backwards and had allll the sass (in a good way) to go along with it, and I could not handle the sweetness. Bodhi is a hat kid through and through as well, he'll say "Hat! Hat!" and run and grab his "super fresh" hat, put it on his head and run back to show us that he's wearing his hat and how proud of himself he is for putting it on without any help.


The quality is amazing at Feather 4 Arrow and the designs are just so stinking adorable, we're going to be customers now for as long as our kiddos fit into kids clothing sizes to shop there. It's so important to shop small, especially in this day and time when so many small businesses have struggled from closures due to covid-19. Each small business owner is a person just like you and I, their business puts food on their table, each time you order from a small business it puts food on their table to feed their kids, clothes their kids, keeps the electricity on, pays for family vacations that make memories that last forever, and so much more... which is why you'll see me supporting more small businesses than ever before after all this. It's so important that we support our fellow humans.

They's also running a great sale right now, free shipping + 40% off sale items with code GETHAPPY40, or get $25% off sitewide + free shipping with code F4A25! Have you checked out Feather 4 Arrow's website yet? Let me know what caught your eye!

6.04.2020

FAMILY HIKING ADVENTURE

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I only share products and brands that align with our lifestyle and that we truly love and use.

Until last year, you couldn't really call us outdoors people, we weren't huge fans of all the bugs and humidity, stuff like that... but then came along the birth of our son, Bodhi, and he turned us all into nature lovers. Nature was love at first sight for him, he absolutely loved being outdoors, he always was happiest outside so we found ourselves spending more and more time in nature, and after a few months we were like "ya know, we actually love being outdoors too".


So that's the story of how we became a nature loving family. Now, we spend every chance we get out in the great outdoors, every weekend you can usually find us at state parks, enjoying nature, at the lake or hiking! We're planning a camping trip soon too but haven't done that one yet just because we're a little nervous to camp with a toddler who still wakes up multiple times a night haha.

Hiking has become one of our favorite things, 2 weeks ago we hiked an absolutely beautiful trail, and this past weekend we hiked 3 more beautiful trails. We ended up hiking about 5 or 6 miles altogether over the past weekend and it was awesome! Bella done so well, she is so great at hiking and loves finding treasures along the way, she found some super cool wild grape vines to swing from on our last hike, unfortunately I don't have any photos of that because I decided to forgo ringing my camera on that hike because I wanted to be more in the moment, but some awesome memories she'll have forever for sure! I just put Bodhi in a carrier on my back and he loves it, being able to see everything and stay comfy. We load up a back pack with water (my big 32 ounce hydroflask works perfect for this) lots of snacks (we love protein and granola bars and slim jims too) an extra diaper and wipes and of course a little first aid kit.


One of the most important things to have when hiking (besides water and snacks) are good shoes. We've been eyeing several brands for hiking shoes and ultimately decided to go with Merrell! We have been loving their shoes. I can honestly say that the pair that I chose are some of my most favorite shoes ever, I usually wear sandals everywhere, but if I'm hiking, working out or just want something that covers my foot all of the way, you can always find me wearing these women's Vapor Glove 3 Luna Leather shoes from Merrell. I typically go for neutrals when I get anything new, and aaaalmost chose a neutral in these shoes, but decided to go with this pretty aqua color at the last second (the color is called "wave") and I'm glad I did, they're such a fun pop of color without being too loud and just perfect! They're absolutely one of the most comfortable pairs of shoes I've ever owned, I specially chose this style of shoe because I love being barefoot and the feeling of being barefooted (plus being barefoot and wearing barefoot style shoes have a ton of health benefits), so when I saw that these were barefoot style shoes I knew they were the ones!

Frank chose these men's Moab 2 Waterproof shoes (in bark brown), we love the look of them and he says they're so comfortable! Yay!


For Bodhi, I chose the little kid's Hydro Jr. sandal, they do run narrow so if your little one has wide and fat feet like Bodhi, make sure to choose the wide width and also size up at least a full size (we ended up returning the first pair and sizing up). I love that they can be worn in water and are fast drying and for all the adventures! They're very breathable with is another thing we absolutely love about them! You can find the big kids size here as well.

I'm a sucker for a versatile shoe, something that can be worn hiking, won't get ruined if it gets in water and can be cleaned easily, but most importantly, comfortable and easy for my 6 year old to get on by herself. Which is why I chose the big kid's Hydro Choprock sandal for Bella! She absolutely loves them, puts them on and is ready to do all of the exploring and hiking! I let her choose whatever color she wanted and she chose this super cute navy and turquoise color. She wears them constantly, they're easy on and easy off, breathable, and comfortable! You definitely can't go wrong wit these shoes for your kiddo!


Merrell has so many awesome shoes for the entire family and for every lifestyle, they sell both women's and men's shoes and clothing, shoes for kids and toddlers, shoes for work, shoes for winter, shoes for summer, shoes for adventure and shoes for relaxing! They have something for everyone, plus they are a brand that has a focus on making the earth a better place, using recycled, natural, ethical and sustainable materials and practices in the production of their shoes whenever possible!

Have you been looking for a new pair of shoes? Look no further, grab yourself (and the whole family) a pair over at Merrell!

5.19.2020

LIFE LATELY

How's life treating you? Life has been looking different these past couple of months for everyone, thankfully my husband has an essential job (he works for the USPS) but I know that sadly so many are out of work and facing financial hardships. If you are one of those, my heart goes out to you and prayers have been going up for every single person affected by this pandemic, as well those who are forced to stay in bad situations day after day due to this and those who have lost someone.


Life has stayed pretty much the same in our home, with the exception of staying home a lot more. We used to enjoy going to the grocery store as a family, the kids would always get to pick some little something out, Bella would help put things into the cart and then load groceries into our reusable bags afterwards, I'd baby wear Bodhi in our Wildbird ring slings while he'd try and reach for everything haha. I sure miss that, and I'm hoping we can go back to normal life sooner than later. I do miss going some places even though as a stay at home mom with two little ones I did't go that many places (but there were a few places I enjoyed going haha, leisurely strolls through Target namely lol), Bella misses going into restaurants the most, but thankfully there is still take out at most places when we want something different to eat. We got Chinese takeout this past weekend and it was amazing, beef lo mein and chicken and broccoli for the kids and I, and shrimp fried rice for Frank. We already home school so we haven't had to deal with sudden crisis schooling thankfully, Bella is doing so good with reading and art!


We've snuggled lots, watched some good movies (Unstoppable about Bethany Hamilton, Fish People, and The Lighthouse of the Orcas, all on Netflix, were 3 of my favorites) done some baking and tried some new recipes, I've taken up jogging, Bella has taken up skateboarding (I've been attempting to learn as well), day dreamed about a beach vacation, slowed way down to enjoy every single moment, and recently now that the weather is finally starting to warm up, been spending lots of time outdoors. We went to the lake this past weekend (a decent amount of people at the state park but everyone was great about being mindful of social distancing) and it was just what our souls needed. The sun and air were warm (hot even) but the water was still COLD, the kids didn't care though, they were just happy to be there and be around water and sand and had the best day splashing in the lake, building sand castles, wearing their swimsuits and soaking in the sunshine. I ended up getting a bit of a sun burn and let me tell you, I've never been happier to be a little red, it totally meant we had been able to be outdoors, that the sun was out and that I had spent an afternoon making sweet memories with my favorites.


I got tired of looking at the same things day after day during this extra time at home, so I've updated a few things... new rugs in the living room, entry way, kitchen and bathroom, replaced the dining room rug with the one that used to be in the living room, got a new shower curtain, a new wall tapestry and print in the kids room, and some new houseplants! It's amazing what changing a few things around and doing a little home refresh can do for you! I still have a few more things I want to switch up and refresh but it might be awhile before I do those.


Currently Bodhi is napping, Bella just finished up school for the day and will be doing her art jam soon, the windows are open letting in the most amazing spring breeze, I have lemon in the diffuser in the kitchen (one of my favorites to diffuse in there) and on the menu tonight are tacos. Its one of our little family's absolute favorite meals and Bella always gets so excited for "Taco Tuesday". We'll be finishing up the last of our last jar of the salsa I canned last summer, it's pretty much the saddest day ever when all the salsa is gone (haha) and I'm already planning on canning twice (maybe even three times) as much this year. How is your day going? What's for dinner in your house today? Feel free to leave a comment down below or send me a DM on instagram and say hi!


5.18.2020

BRAVE GIRLS CLUB | BELLA GETS A SKATEBOARD

This is the face of a girl who has been asking for a skateboard for 4 years. Look at that pure joy.


She saw a movie about skateboarding back in 2016 that we were watching and I guess it made quite an impression on her (obviously haha). She's had other interests over time but she'd always come back around to asking for a skateboard again.

A couple of months ago we started doing the daily free live online art jams that Peace of Wood in Ocean City NJ has been doing and she has just blossomed. Her art, her personality; this whole quarantine/stay at home thing has seemed to make her grow up so much, which normally would make me sad, but I absolutely adore the little lady she's growing into. Anyway, back to art jams... they were doing a contest where you could win a skate deck or 10 free in person skate jams (when they open back up) and she came to me and asked if she could enter, I'm like sure! She told me "maybe I can finally get a skateboard this way" (cue the mom guilt lol). She entered the contest, and when she didn't win, instead of being sad, she was happy for the kid who won and said "maybe I'll win next time", and then asked if she could sell her dollhouse (since she hadn't played with it much for the past year) to save up for a skateboard. I said why not and she ended up selling it and made $45!


She was on her way to getting that skateboard and was so excited. We ended up taking care of the rest (so it wouldn't take her 5 billion years to get it haha) and here she is now... the happiest little skateboarder. We waited so long to let her get one because we were honestly kind of worried about her getting hurt, but it's been her dream to skateboard for years and I think the wait just made it that much sweeter for her and made her appreciate it even more.

I shared a video last week in my Instagram stories of her unboxing it (it's now saved to my highlights on there in case you need a dose of cuteness) and it's pretty much the sweetest thing ever. She had originally wanted a mint Penny skateboard with pink wheels, but then decided last year that she wanted this beautiful sage green penny board (good choice if you ask me because that color is absolute perfection). She spent her first day with it indoors getting the hang of it, falling a lot and getting right back up to try again, even finally doing some actual skateboarding! So proud of her!


She has since gotten her helmet and other protective gear (knee pads, elbow pads and wrist guards) and ventured outdoors. She's fallen a few times, gotten right back up and kept going (thankfully the protective equipment kept her from getting scraped up so far). She is doing so great and having the absolute best time learning. She gets on and goes cruising across the parking lot while yelling "woohooo" and is just the raddest kid ever.


I keep telling her that she's joined the "brave girls club", because she's been so fearless trying new things and putting herself out there these past few months, picking herself back up and trying again when she falls, and for doing things even when she is nervous.


Wanna hear something super awesome? A few days after she got her skateboard in the mail, she entered another contest that Peace of Wood was having, she's been entering every week for 6 weeks, and she finally wonnnn! So she has another skateboard on the way. What's better than 1 skateboard? 2 of course! I love, love, love that she was so persistent and determined and that it paid off. She wanted the Penny board to learn on and then had already been talking about maybe getting another (wooden deck) skateboard sometime in the future, because it her words she "needed one to learn and cruise on", and then she "needed one to learn tricks on" haha, cutest girl ever. She is beyond stoked, she totally screamed from happiness when Kristina (from Peace of Wood) called her name as the winner and has been walking, er skating, on clouds ever since.


My girl, with a sparkle in her eye, joy in her heart, determined and full of kindness, ready to take on the world. Here's to living slow and skating fast!