Holidays on a budget? Yep!!! Big job lay-off still happening so time to adjust our lifestyle! Here is how we celebrated Valentine’s Day in a unique way! Enjoy!
Flashback from fb- 2 years ago in the “refrigerator hole” as it became affectionately called by our friends who visited our house under construction! It became normal to get a phone call or text from some sweet friend who wanted to come see our house and take their picture in the refrigerator hole! 😀 We were excited to move in and thought we’d be there for a long time- then….you know the rest of the story! Jeff got transferred across the metroplex- blah blah blah. We needed to move! But I’m so grateful for the 18 months we lived in Harvest! We made wonderful lifetime friends!! I visited our old neighborhood yesterday and found myself a little wistful. But then I grabbed hold that Gods plans are bigger than our plans and big things are coming!!!! We can feel it! It’s painful and hard somedays- like stretching a sore knee after surgery! The stretching hurts but it’s necessary to take you to the next level! Are you feeling stretched? How do you handle it? Have you tried to embrace it?
So I wasn’t kidding about all the #refridgeratorselfie pics! These were all on different days during construction! Check out all the cuteness! What I love so much is that some of these friends are long time friends and others are new friends since we moved to Texas! Together they are all part of our story and we are part of theirs! And in the middle is sweet #oliverbichon. His bestie #lucybichon had recently crossed the rainbow bridge. We were so sad andhe was lost without her. As we wrote blessings on the new construction of a sweet friends house yesterday (that I met when we moved into this house, I thought of these friends – and others (after the refrigerator was installed) who blessed our home with their presence, kindness, prayer and encouragement! They spoke kindness and hope! They demonstrated the gift of showing up and speaking LIFE- and still do!
These pictures-these faces- these friends! I’m so grateful for them all! And this house? I loved it but it was just a house. It’s the people who fill it and the memories made that make a house a home! I can’t wait to see where we will end up next and the new beautiful faces that will come into our lives! We long to be planted deep but know we are exactly where God wants us now as He prepares the next steps of our journey! So thankful that He covers us and has protected us from things we didn’t even see coming! He has given us clear vision and new intention! I can’t wait to tell you all He has done! I can’t wait to see it myself! So enjoy the journey- none it is wasted! Be present! Speak words of life!!
I’m dreaming of white painted brick! And a new home! Ok- I’m dreaming of many things! I’ve wanted a painted brick house for decades! Our last new construction HOA didn’t give us the option. So now- anything is possible. We are in a huge moment of transition- which means- the possibilities are endless!!! The house is sold, everything still in storage and nothing holding us back. To catch you up, if you are new here- Jeff was transferred over an hour away from our new home. After making the commute for a year- we sold the house and moved closer to his new territory! Just as that home search began- he was laid off. I know….. Right???
But……The job search is strong and God is in control! We can’t wait to see where He places us. We know this- He has covered us and protected us in this crazy phase of life we were not anticipating and even put a temporary roof over our head when we didn’t realize how we would need it. So grateful we hadn’t purchased another house. So everyday- we dream and work with intention -asking God to open the right doors and give us wisdom as to which to walk through. I can’t wait for the day to tell you all that God did during this time in our lives. He doesn’t waste a single thing- especially the hard stuff! We know He has gone ahead of us and has worked out all the details. Life is hard but God is good! Everything is going to be ok!!
Day 1- The news came on Friday-Jeff was being laid off from his pharmaceutical sales specialist job of 15 years! The job that transferred him across the metroplex 6 months after we built our beautiful new house! The house we sold 18 months later bc the commute was brutal and we needed to live closer to his territory! That was just 3 months ago! 😬 Yep- that job!
So Friday was numbing! We found out recently it was coming but hopeful the chopping block wouldn’t come down on him (us). Well, it did! So that was Friday! Fortunately, I was at a business retreat with awesome friends who have known us well for decades and love us! The best place to be when you get bad news is with your friends! To clarify- only if your friends are super encouraging! If your friends aren’t going to make a bad situation better- maybe reconsider. Just sayin’! Choose wisely!
So Jeff came to join us for lunch and rub shoulders with uplifting people- always a good idea! While I remained at the retreat, Jeff drove back to take care of our furry kids- Oliver and Ivy Bichon, and do the only acceptable thing on a Friday night in Texas- go to a high school football game with our daughter and son-law! Friday night lights! Now exactly our experience growing up in a Little Rock, Arkansas. Everything IS bigger in Texas!
The shock didn’t set in til Saturday as we grieved for amazing friends and colleagues who were also “reorganized!” REORGANIZED-that is the word they choose to use because it sounds so much better than downsized! Not really- but what ever makes the decision makers sleep at night! No discussion here about the process – heartless as it may be- bc we aren’t looking back!
Then Sunday—it was a day of refocus, encouragement at Gateway church and an amazing message by Tony Evans. Want to be encouraged to defeat the giants in your life? Here is the link- https://youtu.be/ld7P6DQbDiA
We finished the day with Jeff’s favorite meal at Texas Road House! Because sometimes you need a yummy steak and rolls!!! Yep!!!! CARBS with butter!!!! This was not the day to pass on the rolls!
Hello Monday!!!! ❤️ The first day of a new future and transition is exhausting! Change is hard! Life is hard! Tying up loose ends, closing expense reports, clearing out storage unit, accounting for samples but…the biggest expenditure of energy? Choosing a mindset of moving forward and letting go of the secure! #ivybichon – who usually will prefer to sit with me- was full on therapy dog and loving on her daddy! So rest!!!
Restorative rest! Not for long but in the in between! I’m so proud of Jeff! He has been weighed down for a while and working so hard! The lay-off was certainly not in our plan but the peace we have reminds us of Gods care, protection and covering! He has shown up and gone before us to protect us when we didn’t even know we needed it!
This is not the end – it is a new beginning! But for this minute- rest! Recharge! Renew! And dream big dreams!!!
Have their been times in your life when you have had to recharge? What makes you feel renewed? What is your self care strategy when you are wiped out? If you don’t have one, praying you will look at yourself and see what you can do to rejuvenate! Are you a caregiver for someone else? That is exhausting! Just like on the airplane- when the oxygen mask drops- put it on yourself first! Praying peace and rest for you and new beginnings! Kelly
Wow!!! This is so true when you see change through the perspective of faith!! Change can be exactly what you need to point you in the right direction! The last few years have been crazy, unsettling and exhausting! We have yearned to find a home in one place and create some long lost stability! The list is long and it has been a season of testing, trials and uncertainty! But-in the midst of it all- there has been protection, healing, growth, new friends, perspective and renewed vision! It has brought wisdom and fresh eyes to see many things as they really are! It is not lost on us that it has been like cracking open the hard shell of expectations to explore what could be inside. Renewal? Hope? What about dreaming a new dream? We are having big conversations about this lately! And, if we needed more earth shattering reality to push us out of our comfort zone- Jeff was laid off from his job Friday! Ouch!!!!
Just when things seemed to be finally settling down as we sold our house & moved closer to his territory to reduce his giant commute across the metroplex!! But, this we know!!! God is still in control! We can see His protection for things headed our way that we didn’t even see! He was already making a way! His dreams for us far exceed ours and we desire His best! Grateful for the encouragement of friends and drops of wisdom that seem to surround us! Can’t wait to see what the future holds!
So today? Let’s be intentional and prepare for the future!
That’s what it was called when I was in high school! It was actually a huge football game tradition between two rivalries in Little Rock, Arkansas-Hall High School (where my husband attended-although I didn’t know him yet) and my alma mater-Central High School). The focus of the day was friends and football but always, the food!
Now that I am older and my kids are grown “turkey day” has changed from thanksgiving feasts at school to thankfulness to GRATEFULNESS for life and health and love! Life soars past us at super sonic speed and every year that passes leaves me gobsmacked (I think that’s a word -I’ve always liked it) at what I have NOT accomplished in the previous 12 months.
Do you ever feel a little depressed at this time of year? I know that I do. What I’ve been told is that we are normal-we are not alone. While it SEEMS that the whole world is a picture perfect photo op and my house is anything but, I have to remember, that what we see on facebook is only a highlight reel-its not the messy reality that we all live in. I can tell you-FOR REAL-that should I ever post a perfect photograph of an awesome plate of food -said food may or may have not been made from scratch by me AND it was perfectly lit BEFORE it was photographed IN portrait mode AND everyone had to move their dirty dishes out of the way first. THAT, my friends, is real life.
Here is also real life! I’m an only child married to an only child! For many reasons, holidays make me sad. One day, I might share about some of those things-I’m still “unpacking” that. But…. these things I know. In this world we live in, although easy to forget, we do have so much to be grateful for. The little things mean a lot! Take time to SEE the people around you! They might be feeling a little lonely too -especially this time of year. Create memories with your family-not just buy more STUFF!!! Say “hello” to strangers, smile at a struggling mom with a crying baby-we have all been there (she is doing the best she knows how to do), give out some grace this year, don’t be afraid of the messy-you don’t have to be perfect. Oh yeah-it’s not a competition. And… in case you need permission, that toxic “friend”? – it’s ok to create healthy boundaries- you are not the problem. (check out Dr. Henry Cloud-Boundaries-great book-life changing) drcloud.com
Oh-and the TURKEY? yeah…… you can buy that…. Funny thing? I don’t even like turkey. But we will have turkey because my husband loves it and so does my new son-in-law- But because there are only 4 of us-and 2 of us are always counting calories/carbs, it will be a limited feast-I’ll head over to 407 BBQ across the road and buy a small amount of turkey and ham and pulled pork (yep-because I’d rather have that). We will have lots of left overs which will make for yummy sandwiches later! 407bbq.com
We walk a fine line between the traditional and non-traditional around here-one year we actually had pizza for thanksgiving-or was it spaghetti? Shocking, I know. It’s just soooo much food for so few people. All I remember about that year is that both my kids were home and that was all that mattered to me.
So I’ll go drink my protein shake for now and make the shopping list. Sure wish our son could be here-oh well, I can’t spend time on things I can’t control-I will be GRATEFUL for my son and his life, pray for him and look forward to seeing him again. Life is short! Thankful is not a strong enough word. Lets be GRATEFUL!!!!!! Happy Thanksgiving! Kelly ☘️
I can’t believe I forgot to post this! (Actually I can believe it). 😂 So here is my post from last august! Hope you enjoy it!- ❤️ There comes a time when you have a “wake up” moment and wonder where the time has gone. I had one of those this week. This is me, carpooling with these beautiful young moms who could actually be my daughters. They are the same age as my daughter. 20 years ago, I would have been driving them to school and activities. You see, now, we are all senior leaders in the same company and they’d come to Dallas from Florida and Atlanta for a senior leader retreat. I love that we are all building a business together but, even more, we are enriching lives and pouring into others. It’s not just about the jewelry!
Instead of renting a car and taking a day trip to Waco after our meeting, they asked if I would take them and spend the day with them. I was honored and thrilled. Why was this a surprise to me? Because, here is my impression from personal experience- in our culture these days, it seems that when you reach a certain age (seriously, for me-it was about 40) you start to feel invisible. You start to wonder what could you possibly have to offer, are your best days behind you, are you relevant? It’s a process and a journey and I’ve come out on the other side with definite conclusions about aging and our culture and myself. I’ll share those at another time. <What a fun day we had!!! We went to Magnolia Market, the bakery, Harp Design, the Spice shops, lunch and even asked strangers where to find the fixer upper houses so we could drive by. It was so fun! We drove all over Waco -sometimes further than we planned. Thank goodness for a TURNAROUND.
What beautiful, smart women! Do you know they are also foster mamas? You can find out more on Kristy’s blog called www.thishardcalling.com!ve you girls!!! Blessed by your friendship!!! You remind me what a blessing it is to have friends of all ages- old and young! Thanks for asking me to spend the day with you!