What’s behind that pretty picture- Truth bomb


I am very grateful for my life and share those aspects of it regularly. The purpose is not to attract ooh’s and ahh’s, but my intention is that it may help others realize the shiny lil treasures in their own that they may be overlooking. I am a stay at home mom. When my coveted “position” comes up in general conversation with fellow moms/women who hold a position outside their homes, I usually receive the general comments such as, “You are so lucky!” or, “You have a dream job.” ….HA! *giggle, giggle

My sarcastic, introverted laugh is not to say that I dont enjoy my life or take for granted the arrangement in our family. (Because it is in actuality an “arrangement” that we have chosen in order to create the best, although not always easy, structure that we desire for our family) Rather, I chuckle to myself because of the picture they may imagine. They must think it’s all sweet as homemade pie, lounged, kicked up feet, fresh daily batches of cookie makin’, empty minded, simple thinkin’, leave it to beaver’s mama, smooth sailing UP IN HERE! It’s not. πŸ™‚

For these guys it is.

I am not complaining, nor is this a whine. I just want to clarify. Currently, my windows are wide open because I am disinfecting and shocking the stuffy cloud in my house with crisp outside air (it makes sense in my head). Once again my house is in shambles (organized piles of disorganized mess that I am sorting out) because I have started something that I may not be able to finish in the course of one normal day, but that’s what I get for being “overly optimistic”. Additionally, it’s minimum day, so that cuts things even shorter for my time crunch. Yet, the glory in all this is that I am getting better at managing myself within challenging situations, these days! God’s work in my life and my past personal struggles with anxiety & anger are being overcome! My days are filled with chaotic moments, struggles, juggled schedules & mistakes, just like anyone else’s. But at the end of the day I can genuinely say that our life is abundant, blessed, happy, & full of love.

Even as adults, we can sometimes lose sight of the blessings in our lives and fall into comparing ourselves to others if we are not mindful of who WE are because of Him. With the bombardment of social networking, status updates, photos & other decorated glimpses into the lives of our peers, there can live discouraging illusions. My personal goal in sharing parts of my life, as is my goal in my writing, is to reach and relate to others. Mattew 5:16 says, “Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light standβ€”shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. BY OPENING UP TO OTHERS, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.” As a believer in the life changing word of God, I desire to share pertinent truth and answers. What I have realized is that my personal journey may be similar to that of another and therefore my victories, experiences, & revelations can encourage another! Basically the “If I did it, so can you” mantra.

I started this blog on my birthday as a sort of gift to myself. I had only been “dreaming” of writing this blog and sharing what I feel I have to give for too long without acting on it. Writing is an outlet for me. This was something just for me. However, when you get the revelation of who you are in Christ and who He is inside of you, things usually turn out to be more than you imagined.

I continue to write and share out loud knowing for now there may only be a handful listening. But I will continue to share and build this into the vision I hold onto, believing that there is purpose in it. In my humor may there be joy for another, in my boasts may there be glory to God, in my experiences may there be wisdom shared, and in all I do may God’s will be done through me. I encourage you all to step out in faith, respond to God for he desires much for you, and always share of the great things he does in your life. Keep focused on Him and he will direct your paths!

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Daily Victories at silly struggles

So I was writing a post that was “of the moment”. I was all into it. Usually, it is hard for me to allow myself to be interrupted and walk away. Something I have taken notice of and been working on. However, I just got the opportunity at a spontaneous mini date compliments of Hubs! To be completely honest, as happy as it made me, I had a bit of an internal struggle to step away in my OCD state of mind. In the end, I have made the decision to run a tight ship with my priorities and snapped myself back to the right mindset. So I scrapped my post, jotted this lil rant of my personal victories instead πŸ˜‰ and am eagerly off to enjoy a thoughtful lil date he has planned!……………………

I’ll post about it later πŸ˜‰

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Be Inspired Challenge: Spring

Spring is fresh! It is new, but vintage. It’s the mark of old things fading and exciting new beginnings. Spring is happy & bright, playful & whimsy, crisp & green. Spring is discovering beauty, character, & stories told within rusted wheelbarrows, wild flowers, and melted ice. Spring is the calm after the storm. Spring is the laughter of a child, the warmth of a mother, the love of a father & the kindness of God. – CurlyHeir


I got inspired to participate in a photography challenge asking, “what does spring mean to you?”. I am submitting this recent photo I took of Makaila which I feel perfectly envelopes just what it means to me! On a side note, upon random conversation, we have decided whom everyone in our family would be if they were an animal (I dont know why, we just have)… and ironically Meeka has always been known as the “bunny” among the rest of us. How fitting?! πŸ˜‰

I got to capture this picture thanks to divine, natural opportunity in our own, overgrown backyard, of all places! Yes, embarrassingly overgrown, however with the right view point it has been able to be used as a backdrop of something completely beautiful… and that makes me proud!

Feel free to check out more inspirations and challenges over at the Jessica Feely Blog!

Everyday Reign

It is a new week once again. I am very glad for it! For me, it comes with much excitement. It is a chance for a “fresh start”. I never quite get all the things I plan to get done the week before. So the beginning of a new week always seems like the perfect time to catch up and conquer all my goals… both past & present.

“I will get ahead this time!” I always tell myself.

This past week did not go at all as I planned. Just about everyday hardly went as I foreseen. Last minute plans arose, unplanned tasks got taken on, and almost-forgotten appointments had to be squeezed in. Yet, all in all, a new week rolls in and washes out the old. Time waits for no one.

With much trial and error, I am finally learning to welcome the tides instead of being knocked over by them. Many times as a young, married, mom of three children all under the age of seven, I had allowed life to overwhelm me. When rough days, unfinished work, & crushed plans piled up before me I dragged the heap with me.

These days, I am getting better at just letting go. I have figured out that I will forever be the emotional bag lady if I don’t. I have come to know that being a stay at home mom is in fact one of the hardest jobs a person can do. It takes much self discipline, self control, and drive that many working people do not possess. There is no stern boss to make you think twice about lagging on your work nor a training department to assist you with new job duties. Yet, the company inventory is priceless. My children will continue to grow no matter how imperfectly or greatly I handle the job. Life goes on regardless of my ups and downs.

As with motherhood, it is becoming more apparent how I must apply this same understanding to all areas of my life. There is too much to strive for, hope for, live for, move toward, to keep getting caught up in the things that do not go my way. Every time I choose to let go of something that I could have weighed myself down with, it is the opportunity to grasp something new and greater that will produce new and greater results in my life. I have realized that I can not control everything that comes along in my life. But what I can gain control of is myself. And as my Pastor put it, “If you can learn to control yourself, you will then be able to take control of everything around you.”

The key is a daily walk with God thru Christ Jesus. He created us to reign. He created us to have authority & dominion. We were created to rule. Rule what? Rule ourselves. If we rule ourselves, we will be able to reign in life. Most of the time people get frustrated because they have no control of circumstances in their lives. Most of the time it is circumstances that we have gotten ourselves into because of lack of control of  ourselves. (Mmmhmm, I said it. I know I have been there.) The great thing is that the Bible tells us that we were meant to reign.

Romans 5:17 says, “For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.”

What rules your days? Days turn to weeks, weeks to years of your life. Do new days come with dread and overwhelming stress or are you able to welcome them?

Jeremiah- Little guys can do big things too!

We recently had an experience which gave us a powerful testimony within our family and I just had to share with you all. Jeremiah was hospitalized, unexpectedly to us, mid last week. He is now home and we give all glory to God! We knew that Jeremiah was more than a conqueror. Knowing that we knew that his healing was not to be the only victory, but that He would leave an anointing on the whole unit he was in and on others! Just like his favorite bible character, David, lil guys can do big things too!


I transcribed the details of this by email to our family and friends…

Saturday Morning 12/04/2010:
I just wanted to update you all who didn’t know… As of Thursday 12/02/10 Jeremiah has been admitted to the hospital due to what doctors call Croup. It’s a respiratory condition that can affect young children and has caused him to have an awful sounding cough and breathing issues. 
He started with the distinct cough Wednesday night. The next afternoon we brought him to the ER when he got a 104.5 fever and struggled breathing normally. He is now in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Kaiser Bellflower. His condition improved overall from when he initially came in, but with it being a respiratory condition his stats fluctuate throughout the day.
We are thankful for and taking full advantage of all care & procedures available to him. However, we know his full healing as well as our faith are in Our Mighty God & great Physician. He will come out of this whole & strong. This sickness in not allowed to remain in his body! Greater is he that created life and is in Jeremiah, than any sickness in this world! 
He will be evaluated for release today. Please join your faith with us not only for his release, but for full healing and correction when when get him home and care for him there.
 

———————————-
UPDATE Saturday Afternoon 12/04/2010:
The doctor gave me the news that they may have found something in Jeremiah’s blood culture and will confirm later in the day. I come against this in JESUS NAME! 

UPDATE Saturday Evening 12/04/2010:

The lab confirmed a bacteria was found in Jeremiah’s blood stream through a blood culture. They say it came back as Staphylococcus. For that he would need to be treated IN the hospital for an additional 10 days. Also this bacteria usually causes complications such as Sepsis which is a condition that can cause organ dysfunction and other serious respiratory issues. The Blood Infection Specialist ordered re-test. They ran second tests to confirm or check for contaminate as this is very serious. The test will take 24-48 hours to determine results. We expect to hear word late Sunday. The Dr. explained that the possibility that this is a contaminate (a false result at first reading) is rare when this specific bacteria is found as it hardly ever came up accidentally.
 

UPDATE Sunday Afternoon 12/05/2010:Earlier than expected the Dr. came and said his cultures came back NEGATIVE for BACTERIA as we had claimed and believed for. “It’s rare, but I guess in this case it was” – Doctor
 

Jeremiah was released Sunday 12/05/2010!!!! My Jesus is real and Alive today!!!!

 ——————————

When this whole ordeal began, it seemed to be the results of a cold maybe flu that we were dealing with. Then the symptoms and diagnosis seemed to be coming back worse and worse. Then unexpectedly a wild card diagnosis. Yet, from beginning and while going thru, we stood on the word and our faith and claimed what we knew. We also had many others believing and joining their faith with us. We knew that as it worsened it just meant that this was a miracle that was going to glorify God in the end and prove his power. We feel blessed to have so many, including a God believing family, who supported us in faith, not only concern. And we are grateful to not only know of Jesus, but know him. And as he has shown, to know Jesus is to live in victory, bear rights as his children, have access to his power, and to be a supply to others even in trying times. He sent his word, we just received it and held on to it that he be glorified and these things turn around for our good and ultimately that it would result in the strengthening of the faith of others!

 

I love you all! Thank You for all your love, support and prayers. YOU AND I WALK IN VICTORY BECAUSE WE ARE MORE THAN CONQUERERS and HEIRS TO HIS THROWN!

 

JEREMIAH, ROBERT, PRISCILLA, LESSEYA, MAKILA & SAMSON

When life throws you poopy diapers skip the but’s & wash the car!

After another busy weekend on the fly this Monday morning was a bit chaotic.

To make a familiar and long story short, this morning involved:

  1. A groggy mom
  2. Spaced out kids
  3. A scavenger hunt through mixed piles of laundry (clean or dirty?… who knows now)
  4. Several last minute outfit changes (duh, today is the start of spirit week & team jersey day at school)
  5. Bumper 2 bumper traffic
  6. The hauling around of my drugged up husband (he hurt his back this last week) 
  7. And of course an episode of leaky diarrhea diaper… surprise!!! πŸ™‚

However, it seems the tides are turning.  I am determined to come out on top today! I have managed to bathe baby, the car, and even MYSELF and its only 11am! Tada!


Believe me, if you don’t know, that is like really, really good in Mom standards. Ahh, the simple joys of a stay-at-home mom. Not too shabby!

Thank You & You for the welcome

This evening I had some time to think on things and I just want to give my sincerest thanks to all of you whom have given heartfelt response, encouragement, as well as shown support of me & all I do. With my blog/personal website in it’s humble beginnings it means a lot. I am still adjusting, building foundations & playing with ideas. Stepping out and establishing anything in front of others can be an intimidating place to go. Yet, you have made me feel welcomed. Already I feel fulfilled in the main purpose and focus I desire to meet.

I believe that our experiences, ideas, and sharing of our trial & errors can help someone else. Funny stories about a rough day with the kids, ideas about how to overcome the same issue you were going through, relating to someone and making them feel connected…. everyone has something to give and share!  I write because I want to connect with others & hope to inspire someone in some way, whether it be just for the day, unto a new idea, or into finally acting on something they were meant for. However, thru unexpected messages with perfect timing or thru overwhelming support in many other ways I have been the one to gain & be greatly affected. Thank you friends for genuine happiness & support!!!

Also, a special Thank You to my cousin Bren who was available for a late night chat and inspired me to go forward with an idea I had and even helped me come up with a clever little name. She doesn’t know it, but her words were that extra push that helped me to get over any hesitation I was still holding onto. We are all a supply to someone else at any given time. Let’s all continue to uplift one another!

Free at last?

“You could release a slave and hand over the unlocking key,
but they may continue to remain in bondage and never be truly free.
Until there is a change in mind set & one discovers who they really are…
They will never live as they were meant to be, even if they run afar.”
-Curly Heir
Do you believe that you are truly free? Free to do what you want, when you want, however you want? Like rapper T.I. says are you gonna “Jus live your life, aint got time for no haters.” or  are you ” jus doing you”. No one is gonna tell me what to do, right! Are you free because you are “living life on your own terms” or “living out loud”.
If you believe that you are free, then think on this: What does your lifestyle yield? With true freedom comes happiness, power, peace. To be free is to be unobstructed, without charge, unbound. Does that describe your life? Is your future unobstructed? Are your days filled with power because you are unbound by worry and past hurts. Are you really living a life that you are happy with & fulfilled in?

Or are you a slave? One definition of a slave is: one that is completely subservient to a dominating influence. A slave is someone who lacks the power and liberty to change their circumstances. Whether or not they believe they are free many people still live under bondage. Bound to frustration, lust, depression, hopelessness, stress, anxiety.Why? Because there has been no renewing of the mind. (Romans 12:12 tells us that we must be Transformed BY the renewing of our mind)

One of the biggest “Haters” that you will ever meet is your enemy, his name is Satan. No I am not talking about a red man with dark eyebrows, two horns, & a tail. I am talking about a real, spiritual, being that does not have your best interest at heart. In fact, he wants to destroy you! (John 10:10 says, The thief comes only to kill, steal, & destroy; I [Jesus] have come that you may have life and have it to the full“)

He wants you enslaved to his lies. He doesn’t want you successful, at peace, or to know who you really are! He is a “hater”! He wants you to believe that when you drink or party you’re powerful and desirable; but doesn’t want you to know that you are really a slave to addiction. He wants you to believe that when you seek sexual attention or sleep around that you gain value; but doesn’t want you to know that you are only gaining a warped concept of love & are seeking a void to be filled. He wants you to believe that when you refuse to believe in God that you are empowered, free from rules and a dull life; but does not want you to find out that you are missing out on a relationship with the one who can give you access to peace, unmeasurable blessings, & true freedom from all of your past hurts and bad experiences.

Do you want to live a Free life? A true life of freedom regardless of you shortcomings, your upbringing, your mistakes, your hurts, or what situations were handed to you? You can despite what people said you were supposed to be or despite what society says your life will amount to. I was the eldest, 8-year old child whose mom passed away after living with cancer in her body. At the age of 16 I was an unwed, pregnant teen living in a single parent home with a father who was a drug addict & in and out of jail. At the age of 21 I was the angry young woman with the rocky marriage barely hanging on by a thread. By society’s standards, Today I should have been the 25- year old single mother who neglects her kids to party up the youth she lost. But by the grace of God I am something much different! Regardless of what I was dealt or the decisions I made, when I chose that I wanted out of all that I was enslaved to, Jesus gave me access to my freedom from a broken life and into my rightful place. You can be free too! Whether you are a 15 or 50, it is time to take your place and choose to be FREE! Find out who you were meant to be by having a real relationship with Jesus.





New pet, Veggie phone, studs, & other random weekend things

I had another ordinary weekend by my standards. And by that I mean another full weekend of all kinds of random things going on, but fun!

First, I rearranged the girls’ room just a tad… cleaned and organized the closet that was in much need of a lil TLC. I always enjoy a good furniture moving session! Get’s the blood pumping, boosts energy, inspires me in more ways than one, and I always feel great afterward. I feel lighter, refreshed, accomplished, and the bonus is the “new” feeling I ( as well as my family) get from the space. Most inexpensive design tip ever! I think it may very well be one of my favorite pass times. πŸ˜‰

Meanwhile, Husband prepared for a catering job for a family party the following day. That’s always interesting. Loaded fridge, overflowing ingredients on counters, symphony of kitchen appliances running & husband conducting it all. The girls spent the evening at grandma’s so that was nice for them, as well as us πŸ™‚ We even got to squeeze in a nice evening with a few of my favorite cool people aka some church family. Enjoyed the good ol’ Lopez home hosting special: food+ movies+ conversation+ laughs+ a mini creative session.

First thing Saturday morning it was full motion, plan in action. Receiving & processing kids for showers, dress, & hair (*side note: in this family hair takes a lot of product & a lot of time, yikes!) Then shipping the babes back out… but this time, with the always appreciated, always helpful “team players”, Tata & Aunty Jai. Chef boy-r-d and I packed up and headed out to set up (with a “gently” used home left behind, as always). Incidentally, on the way to the party I suddenly started feeling horrible. I spoke some Words over myself, hung in there as much as I could for as long as I could, drank lots of cold water, and then sneaked away for a lil’ snooze while I waited for my body to get the memo, that the ugly headache and nausea were under eviction. (And that was the end of that!)  Soooo grateful it all went down at a family party vs. a clients, phew! Totally recuperated after a bit, just in time for the start of the party & the arrival of my kids.

People started flowing, food dishing out, and I was the side-task-handler for husband. Phone went right into the back pocket without much thought. To make a long story short, I ended up going home with a new lil pet. My phone jumped out of my back pocket and decided to go for a lil dive! With far stretched hopes, I dried it and buried it in uncooked rice (crazy, but it has worked before to remove all water damage) and I would later leave with it in a bowl :/ Yea, I know… Boo!

It was a Disney Princess birthday party. Everything was so cute, sweet, and it was an overall extremely nice, enjoyable party for the lil princess guests as well as adults! The weather wasn’t too bad, and the food was dee-licious, naturally (I’m biased but it’s true! Other people said so). There were thee most unique centerpieces that were handmade by a family friend (Whom wants to remain anonymous, but I think she should offer her talent). Got my diy craft meter boosted! The princess attendees got the royal treatment with very special themed gifts & treats. My Aunt said she got everything from CelebrateExpress.com And the adults even got their own candy bag! πŸ™‚
Bottom line: the kids left fully loaded + pooped out= Thankful Mom

Sunday was church and it was great! I left spiritually full, refreshed, & revamped, as always. Meeks headed home solo with aunty to Grandparents’ home as she likes to do frequently so she can see what goodies she can score for herself. So our smaller brood had a little Sunday lunch. Just husband, baby, Lesseya, & I… in which a random conversation led to a trip to the mall where Lesseya……. got her ears pierced. Gasp, I know! She talked the talk, so Husband and I decided to see if she was as brave as she claimed. It was less of a big deal than I would of expected it to be, and was more of what will be a noted “special one on one time” for her with us [the parentals]. Out of the whole experience, we gained an opportunity for some deep, important life conversations, believe it or not. We got to introduce the “all things in moderation” concept, explained our expectations of her as a growing young lady, emphasized the responsibility aspect that comes with any new experience in one’s life, & reinforced our values with her. Yes, she is only 7, but the event made it easy to bring up some good info in a relevant way πŸ™‚

She started out excited & bold, cried a few crocodile tears during the piercing, then ended on a good note. She got to check out the new studs after she pulled herself together and admired them quickly. However, she took a second glance. She looked Herself in the mirror and said,

     “I cant believe this all happened to me today!” with a big glowing grin.

I knew it wasn’t the sparkling new studs that caused her to radiate with confidence, rather, was the privileged and “special” feeling she indulged in after a spontaneous, bonding afternoon with Mommy and Daddy.

We got to Grandma & Grandpa’s house to surprise them as well as Makaila. Just as expected they went through the shock & awe. But Meeks had a pitty party. After I allowed her to moan, groan, and sob herself from room to room, I eventually gathered her and her dramatic dealings. We talked, well I did anyway, She listened. After getting through explaining to her the hardest part, that she had to wait a bit more for Her time, she finally came around. She had a lesson in equality. That equal parenting and love does not mean equal timing in experiences and privileges. She even got a life lesson in envy. We prayed that she would have genuine happiness for her sister and patience as well as understanding for herself. She ended with proudly having a testimony under her belt that she can share with others who ever undergo her situation: sibling envy & overcoming through the love of Jesus πŸ™‚

All in all, it was another random, busy, spontaneous, special weekend of growth for our young family. I ended up with a vegetable phone aka new pet, two castle centerpieces (in pink & purple) temporarily sitting on my living room table, just scratched the surface of a new era with my growing young ladies, but most of all have a revived perspective for the fresh week!

It’s the thought that counts… and he really does make it count!

I love my dad! We are a lot alike in many ways & have bumped heads over it plenty of times. However, we have a very special relationship. I appreciate him so very much! He is like no other, that is for sure. My dad, of this married, twenty five year old, mom of three: texts, is a self proclaimed “young lookin’ grandpa” (and has made sure to make that statement public plenty of times), still likes to buy me things, and always gives very detailed advice.
For example, this morning he texted me that he wanted to buy me an outfit for an upcoming occasion & has been texting me updated advice ever since. Like what you wonder? 
Well, specifically: weather predictions for that date; several suggested shopping itineraries ; and even logistics plans ensuring that I get myself around to doing it.
You know that saying, “It’s the thought that counts?” Well his picture is posted right next to it’s definition. If it’s one thing he is always doing, it is thinking, that’s for sure! 
A detail oriented, thoughtful, giving, big-hearted man…. that’s my dad! πŸ™‚