This is my sweet dog on most days while I work out. She just hangs out beside me while I sweat. I have tried multiple gyms and nothing seemed to keep me going except when I started Camp Gladiator. You get two options in person or virtual. Virtual fits my life right now, but I can always upgrade later. The best part of virtual…you stay at home while seeing a trainer LIVE! Yes! No videos…full accountability while they train you. Ask questions, make comments….they will respond!
The challenges reward me with free gear or points and keep me motivated to stay involved. Some days (like today) I was not feeling it, but I logged in and just faked it til I felt it. The glory of them seeing you pop in…no escape! 2500+ options to work out virtually which means you choose your time!
The best bonus is a busy mama like myself can be with my kid. No childcare, no picking him up then dropping him off again…he can be home and I still get my workout in. Plus the virtual option is affordable on my teacher budget!
I feel better, I look better and on rough days it keeps me mentally better. I needed this.
I have referral codes for a free week. Join me in trying out something that has helped me…some trainers even pray at the end (optional) but keeps your spirit right too! If you want to experience a virtual breakthrough then reach out with your email and we can get you started!
Last week, the weather in our vacation spot said sunny all day er’ day…this week weather reports say storms and overcast all week.
Disappointing as sun just gives life to the soul, but a blessing as no one is hurting from a sunburn and we still play all day in the ocean…win-win! Yesterday, we grabbed our boogie boards and went out when the wind was blowing hard. Kinda crazy, kinda exciting, kinda stupid…those waves hurt! But man, such good waves to ride…tall, fast, fun…so many laughs and squeals. Constant sounds of “that was a big one!” We went back at night and we had fun, but the waves were back to being calm and consistent…we began to miss the waves that were hard, crashing and furious and wild!
Isn’t that life? Storms make the best waves. The waves in a storm knock you out of your comfort zone.
Waves in a storm give you the restlessness and sense of urgency to..
Look for a new job.
Make the budget.
Have the tough conversation.
Go to the doctor.
Dry the tears and begin the next chapter.
Say yes to family.
Mourn the loss.
Stop wishing and start trying. In short, the biggest life changes come from the biggest storms. It was in my storm, we began to both work on our marriage and adopt our son. The storm gave us a new perspective to pack up or camp out. We chose to stay.
Storms make you stop complaining about the rain and start playing in it. And the reward to withering the storm is so beautiful and a direct promise from God that He sees you, loves you, was with you and will never leave you.
Rainbows are best seen after the rain. God’s perfect design for his children.
Today I ask you to pray for this family and their fight to beat Colon Cancer. You can google Staggs family to read more about them. They have used their storm to share about Jesus and the fight is stronger than ever right now. The most ferocious of storms are made easier when we stand together…I am standing with them in prayer.
I am writing this from a front porch over looking the ocean. A home we visited 6 years ago, but never knew we would come back. We thought this year we would be in Mexico again, but Corona had different plans. We thought there would be no vacation, but thankfully we made the choice to come!
When given the choice…choose the vacation.
We had a season in our life where a vacation was a splurge and not in our budget. We almost divorced. For real. We beat ourselves down with work, life and our list of do-nots that we got to a point of “Why try?” So now we see the value of take time to make memories, enjoy life and appreciate each other…so much easier when you are out of the house and away from the things that keep you working.
I know we are blessed to be able to do this…trust me, we worshipped our provider of rich blessings with our online campus @ClifeChurch (go to clife.com if interested in plugging in with God online…such good people!)
But, make it happen if you are able. It will not all be perfect especially when kids are involved…but it will be worth it to hear the laughs, see the smiles, feel the hugs because you are relaxing and leaving the work behind.
God’s creation is best seen up close! These moments of calm give me time to see God’s vision, affirm His calling and read His Word in a new setting. Best tip I can give is take all the pictures…be in them even if you feel fat…you will want to remember this…forever.
Reading about the Naya Rivera story…a story of a mother that used her last bit of energy to save her son before drowning…hit me hard as a mom.
I feel her frantic trying to keep her child safe.
I feel her fatigue using all her energy for another’s life.
I feel her panic that she cannot swim any longer.
I feel her love for her child and his future.
I know if she had any fight left in her or clarity of mind to make a plan then she would have done more/anything to save herself. As a mom, we want to be on the front row of watching our children succeed. Nothing breaks my heart more than to imagine not being able to see my child grow up. Not being the one to give the hugs, cheers and watch them grow into adults. I know it devastated her to not get into that boat with him. She gave her life for him.
“No greater love than to lay down your life for a friend.”
Jesus understands this kind of love for His children. He gave his life for me. He chose to die so that I could live. He gave all his energy and breathed his final breath only after He knew I was safe. I owe him my life.
I owe it to God to live my life to the fullest because He sacrificed his for mine. I owe it to God to be thankful for the gift. I owe it to him to tell others about this love.
I do not understand much about parenting, but I get the deep love for the life of a child. I will forever be connected to Naya Rivera on this deep love that you would use your last ounce of energy before letting go. Praying for her family as they navigate a future without her and praying for hearts to be opened that this kind of love is found in Jesus Christ for you and me.
It feels like every time I leave the house, I am reminded how different the world is during a pandemic. Sometimes it feels better to sit in my bubble and just live life in my house and backyard mask free and with my family. When I do step out…masks on…sanitizer ready…I am confronted with the realness of businesses trying to stay open.
Businesses like restaurants with their tables at a distance, plexiglass at the register, and no more self-fill stations.
Businesses like the doctor with no more comfy waiting rooms and folding chairs separated in a circle. Businesses like stores with empty shelves of bikes and toilet paper and weights and pools. Random things people need in a pandemic.
Businesses like schools that will need to teach proper mask technique in addition to word wall words.
Different…yes. Better…maybe. But going outside in public is a reminder of the new times we are facing and makes me wonder will it ever go back or like after 9-11 is this the new normal?
In a world of uncertainties and change, here is what I know: Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. I can live a life fearless of disease and dying because I know Him. In uncertain times, cling to the truth and that is He loves you and died so that you could live. Maybe living looks different today, but dying does not so choose to know the Savior that offers something to that will last for eternity.
Where has this show been and why am I just finding out about MAFS? I found it on Netflix with Season 9 and basically binge watched it…should have been doing laundry, dishes, dusting, tutoring…but there I was watching strangers try to make a marriage work.
I was glued.
To be honest, it made me appreciate my marriage and how far it has come since our early years. Our fights. Our arguments. Our venomous words or selfish actions. Watching these couples make mistakes reminded me of our journey and I felt proud that 15 years later, we are still here.
But watching these couples also made me think back to my list of what I wanted in a man and what were my dealbreakers. A big one for me is “I will not marry a man that pushes the snooze button.”
Do you have any picky deal breakers in finding your spouse?
This post comes from a personal place. I have long been a supporter that prejudice and racism exists way more than it should in subtle and not so subtle ways. I have had tough conversations and lost friendships over that position. Attended hours of diversity training as I look inside my biases and views that affect my teaching students of color. It is hard to open your eyes to white privilege, but not nearly as hard as navigating life as a black person in America.
It is equally personal because I was a police wife for 10 years. Never being able to post my husband’s face or uniform, getting threats to hurt me because I am married to him, the uncertainty of attending his funeral every day he goes to work. Meeting some of the best humans around that give their lives to community service, but never feeling safe. The two roles have some similar threads and yet are often put on one side or the other.
You either are for or against me.
You either love or hate me.
You either ride or die.
I love the #ThirdOption movement that says what if there is another way and you don’t have to choose. In my own words for the movement “What if you can Back the Blue but not the Bullshit?”
As we explore this #BlackLivesMatter the core seems to center around systems and policies that are failing people of color. Corrupt officers allowed to get a paycheck, targeting, profiling…a system that is very similar to education in their funding, their leadership and practices. A system that struggles to get qualified applicants to fill the number of vacancies. A system that lacks in crucial training to practice the best and up to date techniques. Employees overrun with exhaustion, mental health issues and limited resources to fully do the job they are called to do. A system that has a HUGE disparity in population vs. employment…meaning more black students and less black teachers. A system with unions that make it nearly impossible to get fired and a system where steps are how the employees get paid not proficiency.
I am not saying officers have it harder or that they are the victim here. Black Lives are being overlooked. That officer is a murderer and not the first one. Parenting a black son should be as safe as parenting a white one and it is not. But maybe we can support the majority of good officers while also declaring the policies and procedures need to change. We cannot let skin color determine consequence. Policing is here to stay so we must seek the third option of how we can make changes and create laws and hire chiefs and city leaders that will fire and filter the multitude of officers that do not deserve to wear the badge, but make no mistake it is not ALL…let these bodies be the beginning of burying the bull#%$ that cost them their lives.
I believe God will use this moment in time to do something big and we all need to do our part to make this moment in history count.
Not all mothers share the privilege of their son being outside without fear or worry. Unfortunately, 2020 still proves we have a discrepancy in how we are allowed feel about protecting our children. One mom can say “be safe” and move on, while another mom (a mom of color) has to teach a list of unspoken rules then be left to worry. It is not right. Sadly, for far too long we (as in white) have kept quiet refusing to see the truth out of guilt that we live a more privileged life. However, we are called to speak up against injustice and there is nothing more unjust than criminal acts going unnoticed simply because who is alive to tell their side of the story. We should not need a video to take the time to seek the truth. My white son would not have been attacked that day jogging, or in his apartment in Dallas or at the party in Mesquite; all relevant stories of moms that grieve a son killed needlessly in large part (if not all part) because his skin color.
In this time of isolation, take time to reflect then speak up-destroy any blindness that does not see the truth of the situation or implores us to stay silent out of fear of conflict or to mind our business. While I have sat in the longest time out of the 21st century, my eyes have been opened to some #Coronatruths that we are 1. way more connected globally than we think we are (how one virus in one country around the world can spread that fast goes to prove our separation is not that separate) 2. we live in a world with lots of noise (my classroom Zooms prove some homes have lots of background noise and the mute all button has become my friend). This background banter needs to be blocked out to see what is important and to give ourselves permission to feel. We need to change the culture we live in. Stop looking the other way or excusing yourself from the conflict. Do not leave it for someone else-this problem belongs to us all.
On this Mother’s Day weekend, I run for the injustice done to Ahmaud and for his mom that lost her son. We must join hands and step out of the darkness that separates how moms experience raising sons based solely on race. ALL moms should say with peace “My son is jogging and will be right back.”
Today I wear blue for World Autism Day for this guy! Real post: when he was younger, we use to get upset when he was unfriendly to strangers, refused to go into public restrooms, would not eat certain foods because how they felt etc…we thought he was being difficult. It wasn’t until he had a bad dream in his room and screamed in terror when we tried to make him go back that we realized something may be different. When we got the diagnosis, little things made sense and we understood we had to stretch our thinking to understand his world.
A world I had never noticed full of sounds, textures, and a endless way of looking at things not for what they are, but for what they could become. The spectrum is long and I learn new things every day, but God blessed me with this gift to not just be his mom but to also see the world with new eyes. He most definitely marches to the beat of his own drum, but his drum makes the best music ever!
I am life long introvert. Being in quarantine is sweet relief. I like people, but on my terms. Parts this ordeal feel like bliss. But even as an introvert, I value connections. Facebook offers me all the feels. A like, comment, emoji that says “me too” or “I feel you!” I often fail to check up on people because I withdraw all to myself, but God is teaching me to be more aware of the community that maybe I do not need…but that others need from me. And truthfully maybe I need more than I think I do.
Case in point, I was dreading this zoom with my church community group. What will we say? Will we talk over each other? Is it a waste of time? But the time spent laughing, sharing stories, giving encouragement and hope filled my spirit. I walked away knowing I am not alone.
My son is experiencing it too. Noises and people and new are not him, but even on camera he found himself showing off his stuff. It is how we live life. Sharing and connecting can fuel the soul. I pray to be so in love with Jesus that He comes out in me, but I know I have a long way to go. But in these moments where we all feel the same pain and are enduring similar moments then the connection is a powerful thing that can lift us up and keep us going. If you find yourself lonely, lacking a listening ear or just feel abandoned…message me. You are not alone.