1.01.2014

New Year. New Direction.

Hello all!

First and foremost...Happy 2014! How exciting it is to be blessed with another year on our plates. And I know that this year will be another year of big changes for Devin and I. I'm a little bit ecstatic and a little bit scared outta my mind...if you know what I mean. There is just so much to be excited, nervous, anxious, and happy about in this coming year. But I'm ready for it...

It's no secret that for the last 4 months or so this blog of mine has lacked content and I'll go ahead and say it...Creativity. Its a compilation of many things but mostly the transition into my new job and the beginning of my education classes/career. As I think back over the last 4 months, I can hardly believe I made it this far and as I look ahead to the next 8 months or so I can barely see how I'm going to survive. I feel overwhelmed when I look at the bigger picture: Finishing my classes, taking 2 more $120 state certification tests, finding and getting hired for my first teaching job, finishing my nanny career, and finishing my first year of teaching alive.

Yeah, so it's easy to hyperventilate. I wrote about in one of my recent posts how it is much easier to just take it one day at a time. This results in much less hyperventilating. I don't mean to be all Debbie Downer on this New Year, but I say all of that to preface where this next part of my post will be coming from.

A few months ago one of my favorite bloggers, Rachel from simple.little.joys, wrote a post simply expressing her need to take a step back from her corner of the web to find inspiration, to have some breathing room, and to focus on her personal life. She was not leaving the blogging community completely, as she still desired to write on her blog when she felt inspired and follow the blogs she loved, it just couldn't be a priority at that time. Ever since I read her post back then, I haven't been able to stop thinking about it.

Friends, this is where I'm finding myself on this New Year's Day. I love blogging and I love feeling inspired and full of joy when I read all of your blogs, but to make that a priority in my life right now when there is just so much more that requires my attention is just kind of impossible. Will I completely give up blogging? No. Will I stop reading blogs? I don't plan on it. In fact, I hope to find myself here more often once I don't put so much pressure on myself. This is just a formal explanation of the absence you are already familiar with ;)

Life is full of priorities, and finishing my teaching classes and finding my first teaching job is of utmost importance in my life right now. Devin and I have sacrificed a lot both financially and personally so that I can fulfill this dream of mine. I would be unwise if I did not put forth all of my best efforts and my time to see this dream come true. Call this a New Year's resolution of mine if you will, but I know that I need to do this, at least for now, so that I can finally call myself a teacher.

I hope to be back as often as I can and reading all of your wonderful blogs is something I look forward to almost daily. Of course you'll still find me on all forms of social media, so be sure to follow me there! I wish you all a beautiful and wonderful Happy New Year!

Go after and pursue all of your dreams, friend!

{via}

12.09.2013

What's Routine?

So Thanksgiving has come and gone and I can't believe a week has already passed by since we celebrated that holiday. I'll say it again, where in the world is 2013 going?! It's driving me insane thinking about how fast this year went by.

I'm sorely missing some kind of routine in my life. With Thanksgiving week, the kids I nanny for were out of school the entire week. So my usual "routine" days looked a little bit differently. It was fun being with them most of the day and my hours were different as well. Devin and I even hung out with them the night before Thanksgiving while their parents went out.

Then of course, we had Thanksgiving and the day after off. We celebrated Thanksgiving Day with Macy's Thanksgiving Parade from start to finish, warm cinnamon rolls, a game of flag football with the family, and then a delicious dinner at Devin's parents. It's so much fun having our baby nephew around for all of the holidays this year! Friday morning Devin and I headed out to Arkansas for my family's annual African Thanksgiving get together. It was a short visit but so much fun. We were back on the road Saturday afternoon.We spent Sunday putting up our Christmas decorations.

Routine looked like it was coming back again this week, that is until Thursday afternoon. I'm sure by now you've all heard about the crazy winter weather all over, but especially in the Dallas, Texas area where we live. This has been our view since Thursday night....



I know it looks like snow, but it's really all ice/sleet!

The freezing rain and sleet started around 2:30 Thursday afternoon and didn't stop until noon the next day. Our area got about 4 inches of ice and sleet and temperatures haven't been above freezing this entire weekend. Devin and I didn't go to work on Friday, all church activities were cancelled on Sunday, and today I went in to work later since the schools were all closed again. Basically the entire Dallas metroplex shut down. Now, before you Northerners go laughing at us...roads covered completely in ice are a bit different than snow and Dallas is a huge area that sand/salt trucks haven't been able to fix yet. A lot of people lost power due to fallen limbs or frozen power lines, thankfully we weren't one of them. Instead, Devin and I enjoyed a nice long, cozy weekend in our home. We only ventured out Sunday night to get some food and, um, we couldn't make it back up our slanted driveway and had to park the car in front of our house. Sigh. But besides that, our view has been pretty good this weekend, I think...



So about that routine stuff I was talking about...All my classes for Thursday and the weekend were cancelled and were moved to this week at sometime (when I was hoping to be done with them all). I don't know when the roads will be 100% again or when the kids will go back to school. Then they only have this week and next left until their Christmas break and then we'll be on vacation too (not that I'm complaining). I don't know when I'll get that routine. In fact, I may never really have it back until after my first year or so of teaching. So, uh, we're looking at a couple of years give or take.

It's true...When you look at life's big picture all at once, it can be overwhelming. I love routine and structure, but the fact is, I may not get that fully back for a while. Then Devin and I will decide to have kids and routine will be gone until they're all grown up. Maybe I need to learn to be a little less Type A and look more at the smaller details of life most of the time. That definitely gets my breathing back to normal  ;)

This long weekend was so needed. I look at it as a sweet gift from the Lord. It was so nice to be hidden away in our cozy home, away from reality, and to just focus on one another, movie marathons, Christmas fun, cooking good food, and relaxing. It's hard to think about the week ahead and facing the real world again with all of its demands. But, I'm asking the Lord for strength and patience and determination to push through one day at a time.


11.27.2013

Thanksgiving

Here's wishing all you fabulous friends and readers out there a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving! 

I hope you enjoy lots of food and good times with family and friends and you come back ready to celebrate Christmas in full swing (I know I will be)! Don't forget to truly cherish the small things in life and be thankful for how blessed you are. God is good!

{via}

To see how we celebrate Thanksgiving (African Style) check out this post I wrote last year to see our fun family heritage come to life.



11.20.2013

3 Weeks Too Long

Oh, hi!

Do you all remember me?
Been awhile, hasn't it?

Not that very many of you all noticed or anything, but I haven't blogged in like 3 weeks. I don't know if that's some sort of record for me, but the point is, I've been gone and I've kinda enjoyed it. I've enjoyed even more just reading blogs for fun instead of keeping up with my own.

After the birth of my nephew (aka the last time I blogged), things just got busy and I found that keeping up with life's demands was a tad bit easier without worrying about what to write on this blog. No promises around here to keep things super interesting, but I'm trying to find more time to write because I know it can be enjoyable for me.

In other news, how is it almost Thanksgiving!? This time next week we'll be getting ready to celebrate and I'll be crawling out of bed (and dragging Devin) to watch Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade from start to finish and then FINALLY allowing myself to listen to Christmas music as Santa brings in the start of the official Christmas season at the end of the parade. I can't even believe 2013 is almost over. I'm almost scared to admit that because then how much faster is life going to move in 2014?? Freaks me the heck out...

Also, I bought a new car in the 3 weeks that have passed. Yep, that's right. You've heard me talk about how my ol faithful red car scared me to drive and after 13 years of great use, it finally broke down too much to repair it and still find value in it. So, in a matter of 24 HOURS (!!!), Devin and I had to decide what to do. I'm so very thankful that we found an amazing car for an amazing price. It's SO NICE to have a functioning vehicle! This was the first car I've ever bought, my old one was handed down to me, and can I just say that I truly do feel like an adult now? 

Married. Check.
Job. Check. 
My own bills. Check.
House. Check. 
Car. Check.

Is it sad that I find satisfaction in these things? Like I've somehow made it? But in reality, I am FAR from having it all together. Trust me. But I guess it's nice to have things that are mine and that I'm solely responsible for. #adultstatus

So, other than gaining a new nephew and a new car in the last 3 weeks...That's pretty much all the excitement around these parts. I know this post was totally random, but I knew it was time to blog at least something. I hope all is well with you friends (aka the 2 of you that are probably still around these parts reading)! 

Oh, and let me know what you're eating at Thanksgiving so I can still some fun ideas ;)

The End. 

10.30.2013

Nephew







Leeland was born last night at 7:09 PM.
He was 7 lbs, 14 oz, and 19 in. long.
His mom and dad are great (his mom is one tough trooper).
Devin and I are thrilled to be his Aunt & Uncle.