September 28, 2014
by Angie Brown
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Women of Faith Weekend

So lately I have been on here less. My laptop crashed and I just haven’t had time to get a new one. Everytime I try to use my husband’s laptop or even my ipad to post, something crazy happens and my edits get deleted or I can’t log in. Satan likes to make things a lot harder for you when your really wanting to do something. So thank you for sticking around. I love to write and with working full time, soccer, homework, church, school, awanas, and just being a mom that area for me is absent. I pray that God will help me find some balance.

Last weekend a group of amazing girls went to Women of Faith together. It was a weekend filled with fun, faith, fellowship, worship, music, and lots of laughter! It was a weekend of refreshment from survival to revival, which was the theme hosted by Women of Faith. I am sure a lot of our seasons, especially being  a mom, feele like survival. We heard some great speakers, authors, musicians, stories, and more. My favorite part is the worship music. It just speaks to my soul in a way I am moved so heavily in the Lord’s presence. I was able to hear one of my favorite singers, Matthew West. I love his music. I relate to a lot of his songs and the stories that he writes about.

God has me in a season where I am currently not in a group setting for a women’s bible study. The last few years I have been deeply involved in women’s bible studies that this season I am in, I sometimes feel alone, lost, and unstructured. However, God has been evermore present in showimg me ways I can praise him in the ordinary moments of my ordninary days. Being a mom, it’s tough to find alone time to study the word. He has reminded me that it’s about him and not about where I am, who I am with, or what I am doing, as long as I am praising him, seeking him, trusting him, and pursuing him. That’s all that matters.  Here are a few pictures of our weekend and a picture I found on Pinterest that paints a portrait for me in my current season. No matter where you are God just wants you to pursue him, Women of Faith or not, it’s your love story between you and God. HE loves you far more than you can even imagine. You are loved.

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September 9, 2014
by Angie Brown
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New Beginnings

We have had lots of new beginnings this past month. I went back to work full time at an elementary school after being a stay at home mom the last eight years. I have subbed at school and volunteered my time at my children’s school the last two years. I have volunteered the last five years in our women’s ministry on Wednesday mornings while my sweet babies were in the childcare nursery or starting school. Starting the new job I had to end that sweet season my life.

With the new job at a new school my children also started a new school this year. We have had some challenging times and bumps in the road. We cycled through new emotions of a new school, new friends, new surroundings, plus the getting back to school schedule. We still have a few challenges emotionally with my sweet daughter who would rather be home with me everyday but we are feeling at home and embracing our new world.

With all of these new beginnings I am still adjusting and I haven’t been able  to spend any quality time on my blog. I absolutely love sharing my heart and writing. I know that these changes were all the work of God and his timing. He has this plan for me that I cannot see but always for his goodness and glory.

I wish I could write more tonight and just share share and share but I always pray before I write that I am sharing what God absolutely wants me to share. So I waned to stop by and share a little hello of whats going on my world and a few pictures lately!!

When God gives you a new beginning, it starts with an ending. Be thankful for closed doors. They often guide us to the right one.

 

August 6, 2014
by Angie Brown
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Life after Loss

This week my heart is has been heavy yet joyful. I have been sad yet so happy full of laughter in my soul. I have shed tears yet smiled so big. I have remembered and I have grieved. I am still mourning and I am still healing. As my children are getting ready to go back to school and start another year in their little childhood in this journey of life, I am always reminded of the possibility I once had to go through the all the little stages of life with our first child. She would have been eight years old and starting 3rd grade. It’s hard to believe yet sometimes it’s so fresh.

Losing Payton shattered my heart and my soul and the only thing I could cling to was Jesus. Those first few months I felt I like I was just a glimpse in this world losing sight on the goodness still around me. I wanted to hide and bury myself in my grief so afraid to heal and be joyful for anything in this life. Honestly, a smile or a sweet laugh felt like I was forgetting her. Through my journey of grief I was able to smile and laugh again with out feeling guilty.

I have a necklace that say “the heart remembers” , along with “PCC” engraved for all three of my children on another tag. The”P” is a reminder of my sweet little one who was so brief in this world. My child who I wouldn’t get to walk to their class for the first day, share mommy and me dates, read stories with or hear the belly laughs. She had such a small life yet so much meaning. I never imagined I would be going to the hospital in labor ready to see her to her being stillborn and to only go home with out her.

This heartache of mine though, it changed my perspective on life. It changed my life forever.

I always heard time will heal everything. I don’t know if time will ever truly heal my loss and take that sadness away. Life after loss for me is more like this. The days of crying and mourning are farther in between. I am not healed. I am joyful. Life is a beautiful gift. God has blessed me with the sweet children that I am able to be with. It doesn’t replace her but I am living for them as well. They give me hope. I still long  for my sweet daughter and wonder what she would look like. But I long more to be in the arms of Jesus with her in Heaven. My children always ask about her. Why did she die? How old is she? They see her pictures in our home. I smile when I stop and get a glimpse of those pictures. I still get down the little purple box that our nurse made for us at the hospital filled with pictures, baby bracelets, sweet cards, and that lock of her. I still get her clothes and baby blanket down she was wrapped in when I held her and breathe in the little scents left. Just to smell her one more time. Those are the little things I long for in Heaven.

I’ve come so far and grown so deeply. I have grown in my pain and my heartache. I have grown in my love for others and especially mamas who have lost a baby. I have grown in joy and laughter. I have grown in my faith and my trust in God’s goodness and purpose for her life and mine. I have been able to heal so much with my sweet kids.

Her short life had a long filled purpose. Though my soul was broken, her purpose was far greater than my sorrow. As each days goes by all the broken pieces are being carefully mended together. Expanding my heart for a sense of humility I was not aware of before. A loss that I had not noticed so carefully before. I have gained a heart and sensitivity for other mamas.

Life after loss is raw and fresh yet hopeful and a sweet breath of fresh air. I cling to the memories and the thought of spending eternity with all three of my children. I have a beautiful life and I am a momma to three beautiful babies. When I look into the eyes of my precious babies I am moved. Life is a gift and I don’t want to take it for granted. Although it broke my heart to lose one of my babies, I rejoice that she is in Heaven. God chose her for me and me for her. I am her forever mama and she is forever mine.

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July 31, 2014
by Angie Brown
5 Comments

Thrive Moms and {Giveaway}

Hello lovelies!

I hope you are having a fabulous week! Today I wanted to share about Thrive Moms. If you haven’t heard of them you will love them. If you have then you know why I love them. They are moms and wives just like you and me encouraging us daily. They motto Empowering Imperfect Moms with His Perfect Grace. Don’t you love that!! I am most definitely an imperfect mom needing his perfect grace daily.

Thrive Moms

who we are

Thrive is a ministry for moms to encourage and inspire you to do more than just survive motherhood. We believe God wants us to THRIVE and walk confidently in who He calls us to be as mothers.

I love everything they share about motherhood, health, and being You in the eyes of Christ! When I am praying for direction in a step the Lord seems to be leading me to and I am always comforted and encouraged when I read the blog posts Thrive Moms shares. They also have Thrive Local groups for moms to get together and just walk this journey together building each other up. Check it out to see if there is a local group near you.

I just love what Thrive Moms stands for and I love the passion they share as believers and moms. I purchased on of the Thrive Moms tumbler cups and today and I want to share that with you! Enter below and one lucky reader will win this super cute cup! If you can’t wait and want to order one today you can right here!

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How often do you go an entire day without even remembering to take a sip of water?  As moms we are so focused on making sure our little people are taken care of and getting a healthy, balanced diet. But what about YOU, mama?

This beautiful 20oz tumbler will make drinking water fun again! To go along with our “Healthy Body, Strong Spirit” campaign to focus on your health, this cup is a perfect reminder to take care of YOU! Learn more about the Health Body + Strong Spirit campaign here.

All proceeds from this cup help support the ministry of Thrive! We appreciate you keeping us going and allowing up to encourage and support you in your motherhood journey!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

July 28, 2014
by Angie Brown
0 comments

What makes you happy and Weekend Recap

What makes you happy? I have been thinking about this question for a while. Of course, my family, friends, the communities that we are involved in, family time, last-minute road trips, yummy food and cupcakes, and a good hair day, right. Lot of things make me happy and make me smile. This summer we have been home a lot more than usual. Having surgery and being home bound for weeks, we have been in the house a lot! Especially in this hot Texas weather! With that though comes lots of what can I do? I’m bored! I’m hungry! and Mom! he/she’s being mean to me. I know you have heard a few of those!

This past week I have been frustrated, cried, and prayed over my kids to just be kinder, sweeter, and more loving to each other. They have been in a rut of telling on each other, not sharing, and saying it’s not fair. One night this past week I asked my children what makes you happy? I expected some of their answers like their friends, toys, belongings especially being 6 and 7, but hearing their first response family, friends, my husband and I, and their sister in heaven brought tears to my ears. I was moved that through all the little fights this week their hearts were flooding with what I have prayed for.  Although this was validation of our family values and what I hope for they are still little sinners and they woke up the next day having their little disagreements. I didn’t stress as much this time. We did have a talk about how blessed we are. Our cozy home, our toys and clothes, the food we can eat, the reliable cars,our friendships, families, communities we are involved in, blogging, bible studies, and so much more!

That night while I was finally having a little quiet time and reading my devotional I felt so grateful for my family and the things I had shared with my kiddos. I was even grateful for the little disagreements they had, the frustration I had, and the prayers I prayed. I was grateful. I decided to finally make a list a of what makes me happy and I could think was this answer.

Being grateful makes me happy.

I am grateful for my little family and the time we have together.

I am grateful and that makes me happy.

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Love this little shop on Etsy. Check out Aimee Weaver Designs and get this grateful print.

Be Grateful Watercolor Print 8x10

July 25, 2014
by Angie Brown
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Roasted Red Pepper Polenta Pizza

Last night I posted this picture of what was the start of our dinner. I was making Polenta Pizza with Roasted Red Peppers.

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1 package of Polenta from the grocery store

1 cup of your favorite spaghetti sauce or pizza sauce ( I love spicy marinara)

1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella or sliced mozzarella cheese

24 slices pepperoni (2 per polenta circle)

1 red bell pepper roasted and sliced

Pre-heat oven to 400*

Roast your red bell pepper for about 15-20 minutes. Let cool on a plate and then peel away skin and discard seeds. Slice into pieces.

Cut Polenta into a 1/4 – 1/2″ circle. I am able to get 12 slices out of one package of polenta. Place them in a 9×13 dish. Spoon a tablespoon sauce over the polenta. Layer with pepperoni, red peppers, and cheese and little more sauce if needed.

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Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes until sauce is hot and cheese is bubbly.

Serve with a yummy salad!

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July 22, 2014
by Angie Brown
0 comments

Family Time

Last week my husband was away on a business trip for six days. Our kiddos really missed having daddy home especially at home to tuck them into bed. My son especially had a hard time sleeping and needless to say so did I. We tried to have the best week that we could and even with a few mishaps our long was week was soon replaced with happy little ones of daddy returning home. We waited up late watching a movie. When they heard the garage open their eyes lit up so big and squealed with excitement!

We spent our whole weekend as a family together eating yummy snacks, going to lunch, shopping, groceries, fellowship with friends, and the movies. We took the kids to see Planes Fire & Rescue in 3D. We loved the movie! My son loved it being that his dad is a firefighter too and has been waiting for it to come out!

Here’s just a few pictures of our week/end.

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I am four weeks post op from my surgery at the beginning of summer. I am doing absolutely amazing and I continue to get better each day. I am able to lift 20-30 pounds now and turn my neck from shoulder to shoulder. I am so thankful for my doctor and all the nurses. Most importantly I am pain free and not having anymore nerve damage.

This week we are cleaning and getting things cleaned out of the house and organized. what are you doing this week? We are staying in as much as possible it’s so hot here in Texas!

I came across this image on Pinterest and I love them!! I have been thinking a lot lately about there being so many beautiful reasons to be happy each and every day. Even the tough ones.

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I have also been catching up on reading other blogs that I adore such as Kendall over at Songbirds and Buttons!

July 14, 2014
by Angie Brown
0 comments

Motherhood is a journey, not perfection.

I have been thinking a lot lately about who I am as a mother. The role that I am in to take care of these gentle and innocent little souls in this big world. As a mom to little ones I spend a lot time in their world. Their toys, their interest, their books, their t.v. shows, and their music. I have had some absolutely amazing days with them learning what makes them giggle and spoiling them rotten. I have has also had those really hard and messy days that I went to bed at the end of the day discouraged and questioning my ability to train them up.

The last eight years I have been a mom I can honestly say one of the hardest struggles I have had to face internally was that I am not perfect. Not that I wanted to be viewed perfect to my friends, my community, or the world, but in my children’s eyes. I wondered what did they think of me. How did I make them feel.  As they grow, will they compare me to their friend’s mom’s. I was just so fearful of basically breaking their soul in anyway I felt I needed to be perfect.

Do you struggle with being the perfect mom in your child’s eyes? Have you felt this way? Not only have I struggled with this I also secluded myself in this motherhood journey, especially when my children were younger. Looking back, that is when I needed a sisterhood most of all. Someone to be there by my side who has done this or been on this journey or heck at least to do it together.

When we struggle with this doubt we feel discouraged. We feel too broken to give each other hope.

We are not hopeless. We are not disqualified.

I quickly realized perfection was unattainable but being a mother with flaws was a beautiful story.

Sisters in Christ we need each other. We get each other in Motherhood, especially on those insane days. I have intentionally built a sisterhood around me that I can share my struggles with. A sisterhood I can pour my heart out too when I feel like the most broken person in the world or just to send a text venting about the messy house again or the legos I stepped on. again.

God has equipped us to be the mother our children need. He has equipped us to be there for each and not to be alone. To be the friend our friend craves. The wife that builds our husbands up. The truth seeker that brings a message of hope to the weary. The mender that the broken need to find Jesus.

Sisters, let’ s believe the words God has written for us. Let’s believe in his goodness. Let’s thank him for his unwavering truth. Let’s love God fiercely. Let’s be the women that can offer each other encouragement because we need it so much. Let’s offer each Grace, we are not perfect and I need so much of it. Let’s offer each other hope so we can survive and lot’s and lot’s of love!

Let’s learn together and do life together as mom’s to positively impact the sisterhood of motherhood by accepting our faults and struggles, encouraging our dreams, sharing our passions, loving unconditionally, extending grace instead of judgement, live out loud and share the hope that we have been offered so graciously through Jesus Christ.

We are not perfect. I am not perfect. My children do not need a perfect mom. They need to see the messy days and when I feel helpless I can stand tall with grace and love.  Striving for perfection is dis-heartening and never-ending. Striving for authenticity is life-giving.

I’m not just a mom. I am a wife. I am a friend. I am a sister. I am a passionate dreamer. I am a truth seeker. I am a life sharer and most importantly I am a child of the one true king. When it comes down to it our life in Christ is about transformation. For you, for me, for this world, and for my children.

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July 10, 2014
by Angie Brown
2 Comments

No Bake Peanut Butter & Chocolate Squares

Happy Birthday to my amazing hubby today! I am one lucky girl who gets to spend each day with my humorous and oh so fun to be with friend and amazing dad to our beautiful babies! We have been through a lot but we are definitely on this journey together! I wouldn’t trade for ya anything babe!

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Just for that I made him this oh so yummy dessert which required little time and little prep and have I mentioned NO BAKING required! Oh yes I did! This sweet wife didn’t have a lot of time or planning for this years birthday but I wanted to still have a yummy treat for everyone to eat.

No Bake Peanut Butter & Chocolate Squares

1 1/2 sticks of melted butter

2 cups crushed graham crackers

1 cup of smooth peanut butter or almond butter

1/4 cup smooth peanut butter or almond butter

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1 small bag of chocolate chips (2 cups)

Crush your graham crackers in a bag and pour into a mixing bowl.  Add melted butter, powdered sugar, and 1 cup smooth peanut butter. Mix together until well combined. Press the yummy mixture in to a 9×13 ungreased baking dish. Combine the chocolate chips and remaining 1/4 cup peanut butter in a microwave – safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until the chocolate and peanut butter are melted and creamy. One minute should be enough. Mix to blend, then spread all over the graham cracker peanut butter layer. Refrigerate for an hour then cut into squares.

Enjoy!!

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July 9, 2014
by Angie Brown
0 comments

My 10 favorite Beauty Must Haves

Today I am sharing my favorite 10 beauty must haves in my bathroom. I don’t wear a lot of make up but I have some essentials I can’t live with out. Some of these I have always used and some are newly discovered. I love E.L.F products! They are inexpensive and great quality.

Essential Cover Everything Concealer

{I use this under my eyes and on my eyelids and around my lips}

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Essential All Over Color Stick

{I use this on my cheeks after I apply my bronzer and I also use on my eyes}

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E.L.F. Studio BronzerimageLash Love Mascara by Mary Kay

{I absolutely love this mascara! It’s lightweight but looks amazing on! Check it out here }

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One of my sweet friends introduced me to Rodan and Fields this year. Here are my favorites so far but they have several amazing products that cater to all of your skin care needs. You can check out her website here and see all the products and how to become a preferred customer as well. https://ashleythevanillatulip.myrandf.biz/

Enhancements Mineral Peptides Broad Spectrum with SPF20 {I use the medium coverage}

{Perfection is a process. When it comes to achieving healthy, clear, foundation-free skin, even the most rigorous clinical skincare routines take time to show results. That’s why we created a new treat and protect product that offers both immediate and long-term skin-enhancing benefits that work with any Rodan + Fields Multi-Med™ Therapy regimen. Infused with patent-pending RFp3 technology, ENHANCEMENTS Mineral Peptides SPF 20 supports skin’s resiliency to environmental aggressors and irritants and provides sun protection, while light deflecting minerals immediately even skin tone and reduce redness. Available in Light, Medium and Bronze shades, with a retractable anti-bacterial Kabuki brush sold separately. 4 g/.14 fl. oz.}

Enhancements Lip Micro-Demabrasion

ENHANCEMENTS Lip Micro-Dermabrasion is an effective and convenient exfoliation stick created specifically for one of the areas of your face most prone to showing early signs of aging: your lips. It removes dead skin cells and exfoliates flaky lip tissues in just a few swipes. This easy to use, conditioning treatment makes lips look and feel more defined and youthful by renewing the surface and reducing lipstick bleeding. 2.0 g/.07 oz

Redefine Multi_Function Eye Cream

{I love this product! It refreshes my skin and helps with those fine lines that keep appearing. Plus on those mornings where this momma didn’t get much sleep it make my eyes appear as though I did!}

REDEFINE  Multi-Function Eye Cream combines powerful peptides to minimize the appearance of crow’s-feet, helps reduce the appearance of both puffiness and dark under eye circles while special optical diffusers noticeably brighten the eye area. Ophthalmologist tested, this formula is ideal for maintaining the delicate skin around the eyes. 15 mL/0.5 Fl.Oz

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I also love the sun care line they have. I am currently using the Essentials Foaming Sunless Tanning Lotion. It glides on so easy and looks so natural. I also use the Essentials Lip Shield Broad Spectrum SPF 25 (two pack). It is perfect for the day at the pool,beach, or just out running errands in this Texas heat! I apply it to my kids lips to protect them from sunburn.

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Lastly I am loving the GUD line from Burt’s Bees. I love the Grapefruit scent. I use the body wash and the body lotion.

imageSo what are your favorite beauty products? I love to learn about new ones! It takes me awhile to try new things when I love the ones I have but I am so thankful I tried some new ones this year.