Enduring All Things: August 2015

Monday, August 31, 2015

What I've Learned in August

Well, here we are. On the last day of August.

Can you believe it? August has been a good month for me and I learned a ton! Especially about Proverbs and blogging. So lets just get into it, shall we?

God/Christianity:
Ok so as I said on Friday, I just finished studying Proverbs with Good Morning Girls and boy was it a great study! I really likes Proverbs 31 this go round and I haven't always been friends with that chapter. However, the rest of proverbs also really spoke to me this month. And what did it say you ask? Well, it really shouted at me that God doesn't like slothfulness and that I should stop being lazy!

Of course, there is a lot more to learn from the book of Proverbs than not to be slothful, but that's just what really spoke to me this time around. Verses like Proverbs 13:4 and 24:30 really got me thinking. It's no secret that I really like my sleep (Proverbs 20:13), but it's more than that. When I'm done working for the day, I always want to watch Netflix or read and leave the dishes for yet another day. And when I realized (though I always knew it but this study reiterated it) that God actually despises laziness, it was sort of a wake up call.

And then the same point is very much reiterated again over and over in chapter 31. The Proverbs 31 woman was the exact opposite of slothful! She did her work diligently and with a cheerful heart! So, needless to say, I've been much more excited to do housework (among other things) lately!

P.S. Don't forget, the Proverbs 31 Woman DID NOT do all the things listed in that chapter in one day. Just in case you were wondering.

Pearson:
I really didn't learn much about Pearson this month that I didn't already know, but some good qualities were definitely reiterated! One thing was that he's very dedicated to his work! He even stayed over night once last week to get an experiment done. He was at school from 8 AM Tuesday morning to 8 PM Wednesday night!

Another thing was that he wears his emotions on his sleeves. And when he seems really, really upset about something, he is, but his attitude could be completely changed in a little while. This is something I truly admire about him because I am the opposite. I tend to bottle things up and can usually fake it pretty well. But when I'm upset I stay upset for a long time.

I did learn that he is not a big fan of the fair. Like at all. And I was very surprised to find out that before this month, he had only been to the fair once in his life and that was when he went with me in high school.

Myself:
I learned this month that I actually enjoy and can sort of pull off lipstick! I used to only wear lip balm and lip gloss, but never lipstick. Well, that's changing, my friends! Along those same lines, I am really enjoying the Naked 3 Palette that I won last month. What I've learned is that there's a lot you can do with an eye shadow palette and maybe I like playing with makeup more than I ever thought I would.

I also learned that I'm getting faster at reading. I've always been like the slowest reader ever but I've been reading for pleasure a lot more lately and I think I'm getting faster at it. The problem now is that I just need more time to do it! (Don't we all?)

Blogging:
I took Daniela's FREE Blog Makeover Challenge this month and boy did I learn a lot about blogging! I don't want to completely give you everything I learned because you should totally take her COMPLETELY FREE challenge! But here are a few things.

Branded fonts, colors and graphics make all the difference. You want people to associate these things with your blog and when they see one of your images on Pinterest, for example, they know it's yours!

Headlines make a big difference too and there is a free headline analyzer on coschedule to help write the best titles for your posts!

Work:
I actually did learn a lot about work and how our products are coded, but I won't bore you with that.

What did you learn this month?
Thanks for reading!
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Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday 5: Favorite Things from August

Can you believe August is almost over??? We only have 3 more days. Then it's September!!! And that means there are only 4 more months in the year! But you know what, that also means only 6 days till college football starts and 8 days till the Dawgs play! It also means there's less than a month until Fall is officially here! Only a few more weeks till all our shows come back on TV. AND... Guess what! Only 17 weeks till Christmas!!!

So now that I've got you all excited, lets look at some products things that I've loved this month, shall we?
The Naked 3 Palette - I won a Naked 3 Palette along with some other makeup goodies from a giveaway on But First, Coffee back in June. It took a while to get to me because the lip stick I wanted wasn't in stock and then I was doing "The Music Man" so I didn't get to really try it out till this month and I LOVE it! I play with it every day even if I'm just going grocery shopping...

Good Morning Girls - I've talked on the blog before about the Good Morning Girls bible study but I couldn't help but include it here too. I got quite a bit behind during my crazy busy summer, but that's OK because they're taking a pretty big break between their summer and fall studies. So over the last month I finished up the study of Proverbs and can I just say, I look at the Proverbs 31 woman in a whole new light now! I'll talk more about this on Monday in my "What I learned in August" post so stay tuned!

Blogiates - I've fallen in love with Blogilates again! I've been doing the August workout calendar and it's killing me! In the best way possible, of course. I feel so good after working out even if I sometimes feel like I want to murder Cassey when I'm in the middle of it. But the best part is, I haven't had any trouble motivating myself to work out. I just really enjoy Pop Pilates that much!

Canva - I can't remember who introduced me to Canva first, but I know Daniela used it a lot in her Blog Makeover Challenge that I took at the beginning of this month. Anyway, I use it now for making graphics for my blog. I don't use it exclusively because there are some things that Pickmonkey still does better, like easily re-sizing images and making backgrounds transparent. But there are things Canva has that Pickmonkey doesn't too like saving your creations and being able to edit them again later.

Galaxy S6 Edge - Last, but not least, I got a new phone at the very end of July because I dropped my old one and cracked the screen. I decided to go with the Galaxy S6 Edge. I've loved all my Galaxy phones in the past and I just loved how sleek the edge looked. I don't even use the notifications on the side much but I just love the shape of the screen and the way it feels in my hand. It's hard to explain.

So there you have it, my 5 favorite things from this month!
What are some products you've loves this month?
Thanks for reading!

THE GOOD LIFE BLOG  Bright on a Budget
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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Thankful Thursday Party - August 2015 {link up}

Pearson and I moved to Ohio at the beginning of August, three years ago. 

We got married on July 14th and two weeks later, we moved about 600 miles away from all the family and friends we ever knew. A lot of people told us on social media that they were praying for us during that time of major transition. I've discovered this over the last month thanks to timehop! I lost count of how many but they were all members of the church.

Isn't that cool? God never intended for us to go through life alone (click to tweet). That's why He established the church in the first place. And it's not just our home congregation or the congregation we worship with now who encourage and help us out. It's the church family all over the world.

It's the community that places like Harding University create. It's the thousands of people praying for Harrison Waldron right now. The hashtags alone, #PrayingForTheWaldrons (also on Instagram) and #wakeupHarrison (here on Insta), are so inspirational to see.

It's the fact that no matter where you go, you most likely have connections someone in the church there. I went to Memphis a couple weeks ago for a girls' weekend and we talked to a family who recently placed membership at her congregation and we have so many family and friend connections. I knew basically every name they mentioned, whether I had only heard the name or I personally was close to that person!

Not only is this a small world, but you will also always find people to help you when you need it. They already have that bond with you in Jesus and that's all they need. When Nicholas passed away earlier this year in a tragic accident, the hospital waiting room was filled with strangers. Members of the church in the area were there to comfort the family. There's no questioning. It's just what God's people do.

And there's not much better in this world!

So this month, for Thankful Thursday, I am thankful for the church. For God's family all over the world.

What are you thankful for this month? Be sure to link up below! The link up is open through next Thrusday September 3rd.
Thanks for reading!

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We have so much to be thankful for and a lot of us take that for granted. Lets change that! I bring you the #ThankfulThursdayParty linkup with Charlene @ From Bisons to Buckeyes where we can write about what we are thankful for and link up on the last Thursday of every month. I would love to have you and can't wait to see what you're thankful for in your life! 
  • If you're interested in co-hosting, please send an email to Charlenemarie11@gmail.com.
  • Also, if you aren't getting the email reminders about this link up and would like to, please let me know in the comments or send me an email for that as well.
Host: Charlene - Blog // Twitter // Instagram // Pinterest || Co-host: Lexi- Blog // Instagram // Twitter // Bloglovin
Linkup Rules (Guidelines):
  1. Follow your host and co-host in some way
  2. Link up your Thankful Thursday Party post, NOT your blog URL
  3. Use the hashtag #ThankfulThursdayParty when you share on social media
  4. Grab the button and display it on your blog so others can join the party
From Bisons to Buckeyes: Thankful Thursday Party




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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Letters to the World {August 2015}

It's time for some letters to the world again!
Dear Pip,
WHY are you acting up so much lately? You dig every time we put you in your crate. You've torn up our carpet and our bath mat and everything we've tried putting under your crate. Do you think I'm going to go out of town again? Not for another month! Can you hear our neighbors' dogs while we're gone? Is that it? What's going on?

Dear Ashley Madison Users,
I just don't understand. Why on earth would you sign up for a website with the intention to have an affair? Why do you feel the need to cheat? If you're not happy in your marriage, work through it. Or get a divorce. Of course people have many reasons for not getting a divorce with religion being one, but if that's not you... (and I highly doubt all 38 million of you don't want a divorce for religious reasons) If that's not you, why on earth would you purposely cheat when you can just leave if you're not happy. It makes no sense!!! Getting too close to a co-worker and spending too much time alone with them and eventually hooking up, while completely terrible in itself, is a little more understandable to me than signing up and paying for an account on a website all with the intent to cheat. It's quite literally unbelievable. And you know what else is bad, people are concerned only with getting caught. There are now websites out there to see if your info was leaked. Not to see if your spouse's info was leaked, but to put in your confirmed email address to make sure your info wasn't leaked. And now Ashley Madison is facing a law suit for not being secure enough. Are you kidding me? This world has it's priorities in the wrong place.

On a brighter note...
Dear Fall,
You're almost here! I can't wait to wake up on Saturday to the cool crisp air and settle down on the couch with a blanket next to the open window and cheer on the Dawgs. So many memories. I can't wait to wear boots and scarves and sweaters. I can't wait to crunch fallen leaves under my feet. I can't wait to taste and smell Pumpkin Spice everything. I can't wait to go apple picking and dress up for Halloween. Yes I am the basic white girl who loves Fall and I am not ashamed!

Dear Duck Dynasty,
I watched John Luke's wedding the other day and absolutely cried. So beautiful and emotional. I love how you can do that. I don't personally know any of you but I feel like I do. What is it about you guys that does that to me? Maybe I'm just weird.

Dear The Fault in our Stars,
Thank you (not) for being so addicting. I knew how you ended yet I read you anyway and couldn't put you down. I felt some of you was a little cheesy but hey, you're a teen fiction book. Over all, you were good and addicting and emotional. I'm still not completely sure how I feel about you.
What would you write in an open letter to the world today?
Thanks for reading!
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Friday, August 21, 2015

Literary Ladies Summer Book Challenge - August Check In

Alright, guys. As you probably know, I decided to join a summer reading challenge this summer. As you also probably know, I've had a very busy summer. So I've decided to make my own challenge for myself as a smaller sect of the original challenge.
source
The original Literary Ladies Summer Book Challenge had 10 books. I picked 10 books, one for each category, but I decided to shoot for only four of them. By my July check-in, I had only read one. Now, for my August check-in, i'm proud to say I've read three! That means I'll have no problem completing my personal challenge and may even exceed it! Woohoo! So let's check up on my progress, shall we?

So here's what I've read:
  • A book written by a comedian or celebrity: Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham. (I'll review it on the blog soon)
  • A YA book (mandatory): The Fault in our Stars by John Green (Which I found out is actually a TEEN book, not YA. Oops)
  • Non US author (mandatory): Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
Here's what I have left to read:
  • A book that was recommended by a blogger (mandatory): The Happy Wives Club by Fawn Weaver (recommended by Amberly)
  • A book that has been on your TBR list for a year or more: The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  • A book with a kick-butt female character: Dancing Through Life by Candace Cameron Bure. I changed this one because I ordered it from Amazon and now I'm very eager to read it. I think it fits this category, don't you?
  • A book that will be a movie (or TV show): The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel
  • A book with a one word title: Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
  • A suspenseful book - a mystery, a thriller, a book about revenge: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  • A book about Summer, with Summer in the title:  That Summer by Lauren WIllig
Linking up with The Kay Times.
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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Being Kind Even When You Don't Feel Like It

Being kind is a simple way to show love and make someone's day. (click to tweet)

So why is it so hard to do? It shouldn't be. It should come naturally. But for some people, it just doesn't. And for the rest of us, maybe it doesn't at times. That's what I want to talk about today, being kind when you don't feel like it.

You've heard the phrase "Kill them with kindness," right? I sort of have a love hate relationship with this phrase. The idea is that when someone doesn't treat you right, you don't get back at them in the same way, you use kindness instead. It's really the right thing to do, but I have a problem with the attitude of "killing them" with your kindness. Whenever I've used this phrase or thought about it a lot, I picture how my kindness affects the other person and I always hope it really annoys them and drives them crazy. At that point, the motivations behind being kind are not much different than the motivations behind being mean, right?

Lately, I've slightly changed my motivations for being kind. You know, I set the marriage goal of being a cheerful wife last month and being kind and being cheerful go hand in hand. The reason I set that goal was because, after we saw Inside Out, Pearson told me that the thought my dominant emotion was sadness. That really opened my eyes to what he saw when I acted sad.
Source
Now I know you can still be kind when you're sad, but I think it's much more difficult. And besides, I know there are times when I wasn't very kind to Pearson on top of not being very cheerful, and he was a wonderful husband and loved me anyway while trying to calm me down and cheer me up.

So now I look at intentionally being kind (and cheerful) in a different light. I do it because it makes my husband (and anyone else I come into contact with) happy. I know that dealing with someone who's constantly sad, frustrated, or anxious, and who takes it out on others, can be taxing and frankly not enjoyable. I've been there. And when I realized I was doing it to others, it was like a light bulb went on in my head!

I don't want to be known as a jerk or a Debbie Downer or just someone who's not fun to be around. I want to be known as someone who always has a smile on their face and who cares about others and is kind no matter what. I know people like this too and they are always more fun to be around and their attitude is contagious.

So really, this change should be simple. I've already written a post about how to be a more cheerful wife, and those tips can mostly be applied to friends as well as your husband, but how can you be kind when you don't feel like it?

I really don't think there's straightforward answer. Just try to think about how you would want to be treated, think about the other person as a person with feelings, remember that they probably have nothing to do with why you feel the way you do, and practice, practice, practice. You, and I, will probably still slip up at times. We are human, right? But it starts with an attitude change. That's why the motivation behind it is so important.

Do you ever struggle with being kind? What are some tips you have to help?
Thanks for reading!
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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Why Simply Being Together is Important to your Relationship

Pearson and I went to the fair last weekend.

And I didn't take many pictures because my phone died while we were there. Wow. I've gotten the "worst blogger award" way too much lately.

I love going to the fair. It remind me of high school and dating and fun. I really didn't go to the fair that much growing up, but I can remember a few times. Pearson, however, has now only been twice. Once with me in high school, and once last weekend. He's not a huge fan.
The Ohio State Fair, is supposed to be one of the biggest and best fairs around, but it's located down town, and since we went on the last day it was open, there were gangs picking fights after dark. So needless to say, it really wasn't our scene.
But we stayed anyway (and stayed away from where the gangs were hanging out). We just wanted to enjoy each other's company. We'd gotten some free ride tickets from a friend so we used those on the Ferris wheel and one other ride. We saw a couple shows. We ate terribly. And we used the opportunity as something different to do together even though it wasn't really something either of us were that excited about.

But that's not the point, is it? The point is to spend time together. It doesn't matter what you're doing. Quality Time is toward the top of both mine and Pearson's love language lists, so spending time together is so important!

The problem is, it's sometimes hard to find fun and interesting things to do together for that quality time. So we usually end up just watching TV. And that's fine, but it's good to find something new sometimes. And it doesn't have to be something crazy, expensive, or extravagant.
What about simply going on a walk after dinner? Perfect. Or take dinner outside for a picnic for a change. Leave your phones at home and soak up this last month or so of summer. Play a board or card game. Find a list of questions and just sit on the couch all night asking them to each other.

Another way to simply be together is to be in the same room but doing different activities. There may not be as much quality in this time as there would be when you're putting all your attention on your spouse, but sometimes it's unavoidable and sometimes you just need time to yourself. But if you can be "by yourself" with your significant other, that really says a lot about your relationship.
There are a lot of times when Pearson and I will both be sitting on the couch reading different books. We stop every once in a while and read an excerpt to each other and we can even be cuddling at the same time. Or sometimes he'll be playing a video game while I'm blogging. I like to stop what I'm doing every once in a while and just watch him.

These moments are so important to me and so much better than locking myself in the bedroom to read or blog while he does his own thing in the living room. It just feels right to be together, you know?

What are some things you and your hubby do together? Do you ever do your own separate activities together?
Thanks for reading!

Linking up with Wedded Wednesday and Wifey Wednesday
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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Importance of Keeping up with my Best Friend

I spent this weekend in Memphis hanging out with my best friend, Ashley. 

I have to admit, while I was excited to see her and her husband and spend some time exploring the city for a girls weekend, I was just not in the mood. I've been very busy and tired and I just wanted to have a weekend at home to do nothing. But I knew I would have fun once I was there. And boy did I!

Before I get into recapping the weekend though, let me just say that I've decided I will never fly standby again. (Sorry Memaw and Pepaw. I appreciate it, but I'm not sure it's worth it anymore). My grandpa (Pepaw) is a retired Delta pilot so I can get cheap plane tickets through his Buddy Passes. But I have to fly standby which means I wait around and only get on a flight if there is an open seat. I should have learned after Orlando last year...

If I myself were a Delta employee, it probably would be worth it because I would be toward the beginning of the list every time. But since I'm the granddaughter (which, to them, is no different than a friend or "buddy") of a retired pilot, I'm always close to the end of the list.

Anyway, all this to say, I had to fly through Laguardia to get to Memphis Thursday night which was a pain. And while coming home on Sunday, I didn't get on a flight at all. I had to spend another night and leave first thing Monday morning. Luckily, Ashley and Taylor are the best people on the planet. They let me stay with them another night and took me to the airport at 5 AM. (I know I still owe you! I promise I will never forget this). I also had to beg my boss to let me make up hours missed Monday morning. He was cool about it though.
Ok I wrote more about that than I meant to... Anyway, all this to say, IT WAS STILL WORTH IT! We had two full days with nothing in particular planned. On Friday, she took me to a fun breakfast place, Another Broken Egg. Then we went out shopping in their new neighborhood. We had to go to Pyro's for dinner and Muddy's for dessert, of course!

Saturday was more of a tourist day. We had breakfast at Gibson's. Then we explored the Bass Pro Shop in the pyramid and I have to say it was certainly a sight to be seen. We had lunch at BooYa's and then went to the grand opening of H&M at a mall close to them and they had a legit DJ and check out lines out the door. We didn't buy anything, but it was such a fun atmosphere.
A photo posted by Charlene Maugeri (@mrsmaugeri) on

Sunday, we went to church. I'm always amazed at how friendly the Lord's church is and how small the world really is within the church. Pretty much anywhere you go, you'll find people you have connections too. And I KNOW you'll find friendly people who are genuinely excited to have you visit. We had lunch with Ashley's family who always treats me like part of the family. And then they took to the airport, only to come back and get me later.

In the evenings we watched chick-flicks and FRIENDS and just hung out together. The whole weekend was so refreshing, you know? Once you're out of college (and married), these girls' weekends don't happen much with anyone, much less with a long distance best friend. You have to make them happen.
Ashley and I are are so much alike and we connect on so many levels. Hanging out with her is like a breath of fresh air. It's so important to have these kinds of relationships. You know, the kind where the other person just knows you and gets you. It's important to have that with your husband, but for me it's also important to have that with girlfriends.

Moving out of the college atmosphere was a really tough transition for me. I no longer had close friends close in proximity. In college I lived in the same room/apartment or just down the hall from all of my closest girl friends. We all knew everything about each other and had that indescribable bond. But when we moved away, keeping that bond got a lot more difficult. It takes effort, money, patience, and technology to keep in touch, but it's so worth it!

Do you keep in touch with your college girl friends? When was the last time you saw them? Or video chatted with the? Do you know the kind of bond I'm talking about?
Thanks for reading!
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Friday, August 14, 2015

How to Sucessfully Manipulate Your People {A Guest Post from Pip}

Hey Guys! Pip here. If you don't know who I am or happen to not remember much about me, you can see this post where mommy introduced me, or my "Day in the Life" guest post, or when I recapped our memorial day weekend, or when I wrote on my first gotcha day.

Anyway, today is my 2nd Gotcha Day! That means Mommy and Daddy took me home from the shelter 2 years ago today! Since it's my Gotcha Day, Mommy is letting me take over her blog again. Aren't you excited?

So I thought I'd take this opportunity to teach all you other doggies out there how to manipulate your people and train them to do what you want them to. And it's okay if Mommy reads this because she knows I have her trained and even if she wanted to break free, she couldn't. She's too far gone!
First of all, you have to be cute. It makes getting what you want so much easier. Luckily, being a dog pretty much means you've got this part down.
Secondly, you have to be well behaved. If you're tearing up furniture or messing on the floor all the time, your people aren't going to do what you want. They're just gonna be mad at you all the time.
Third, you have to get excited over exciting things. If you love going to the park, jump up and down and run in circles every time your person mentions going to the park. Eventually, they will learn that you like it and will take you to the park more often.
And lastly, you have to look real sad and cute when they don't do something you want them to. The cuter the better. Just pout and look up at them with those big puppy dog eyes and they'll cave every time.

And there you have it. It's really pretty easy! Like I said, a lot of it is just thanks to how cute you are and you don't even have to do anything! Pretty great huh?

If you're a doggy, or if you're a fur mamma with a cute little doggy, introduce them in the comments! I wanna meet all you blogger doggies!
Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

How to be a More Cheerful Wife

Last month I set the relationship goal to be a more cheerful wife and I think I succeeded. But it's tougher than it may sound. So I've compiled a few little tips that helped me stay cheerful and positive.
Be genuinely excited when he gets home form work (or whenever you see each other after being apart). No matter what you're doing, stop and give him a hug and a kiss with a big smile on your face!

Set realistic expectations for your husband. He is human. He makes mistakes, just like you. Give him grace and don't snap.

Going along with the above, when you're upset, stop and assess your anger and frustration. Is it justified? Is whatever you're angry about important? If so, bring the issue up calmly and explain why you feel that way as well as you can. Use "I," not "you" (I feel this way because _____. Instead of "you" did ____!) If you're angry about something silly, maybe it would be best to just let it go. Use your best judgement.

Use a happy tone of voice all the time. Even when you're angry and frustrated. Communicate what is bothering you, as I said above, but don't raise your voice or speak in a condescending or sarcastic tone and don't be passive aggressive. Be truthful and straightforward, but speak in a kind tone.

Take care of yourself. Get enough sleep. Eat healthy. Exercise. Be able to say no and not take on too much responsibility. When you feel good, you're less stressed as much and it's easier to treat others well.

When arguing with your spouse, put yourself in his shoes and try to see things from his perspective. Listen to what's hurting him instead of attacking with your own side of the story. If you listen and truly try to see things from his side, you can either apologize for what you did wrong, or explain that you meant whatever happened in a different way. You'd want him to do the same for you, right?

Compliment and thank him often. Even if he's done something that you expect him to do, thank him anyway. Compliment him every chance you get. If you're in the habit of making a big deal about his assets, it will be easier to see them when you're mad at him. It will be easier to stay cheerful when you remember just how lucky you are to have this wonderful man.

Now some of these things are easier said than done, I know. I struggle with them all the time. But when I can remember to stay positive, life is just so much better.

Do you do any of these things? How have they helped you stay positive? Do you have any tips to add to mine?
Thanks for reading!
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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

5 Meaningful Verses to help with Trusting God

Last week, when I was in Atlanta for work, I got to attend Buford Church of Christ's summer series class on Wednesday night. The speaker talked about the book of Job. One of the points he made was "God's got this!" He used chapters 38, 39, 40, and 41. I won't quote all that, but that's where God is telling Job not to worry because He can do anything. God says "Remember all the awesome stuff I've done? Just chill. I've got this." (I paraphrased, of course).

One analogy that the speaker used really stuck out to me. He said that we humans are like the little boy sitting on our father's lap in the drivers seat of his car. His hands are on the top of the steering wheel, his feet are barely dangling over his daddy's knees, and he can barely see over the dashboard yet he says "Look, Daddy! I'm driving!" That's how we feel sometimes, isn't it! We think we're in control and we've got this life thing! But little do we know, God's got his huge hand on the bottom of the steering wheel. He's really the one steering. And his feet are making the vehicle go. It's not us at all even though it may seem like it at times!

For me, it's easy to sit back and let God drive when things are going well. When I have a comfortable job and a loving husband. When we're making plenty of money to pay all the bills and all of my friends and family are in good health. Basically, I'm content when life is going the way I want it. But life doesn't always go that way, does it? In fact, it's very seldom that life goes the way we want. And that's when it's difficult to remember that God is driving. That's when it's hard to sit back and trust him to step on the breaks when He needs to!

If something is not going the way I want it to in my life, it usually takes me a while to put it in God's hands. I'll be stressed out for a while and worry 24/7 for a couple days until I just cannot handle it anymore. That's when I finally turn to God. But that's not what He wants. He wants us to turn to Him first. He wands us to trust Him all the time. After all, He is the one controlling everything. He wants us to recognize that and to lean on Him rather than try to do it all ourselves.
So here are some verses I turn to when I find myself struggling to trust God with my life.
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." Matthew 6:25-34 ESV

"Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10 ESV

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths." Proverbs 3:5-6

"Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord." Psalm 32:10 

"And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you." Psalm 9:10
 
 Linking up with Titus 2 Tuesday and Living Proverbs 31
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Thursday, August 6, 2015

Book Review: Someday, Someday, Maybe

Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham (aka Lorelai Gilmore).
I first heard of this book sort of in passing during all the hype about the Gilmore Girls reunion back in June. Basically, when they were talking about Amy Sherman-Palladino’s brilliant writing, the mentioned that Lauren Graham is now a writer too. Then I followed Lauren Graham on Twitter (don’t ask me why I wasn’t following her before) and she tweeted about her book some here and there. Other than that, though, I didn’t know much about it. And Pearson certainly didn’t. But when he was ordering my gifts for our anniversary, he stumbled across it. He ordered a Luke’s Diner coffee mug and the book was one of the “People also bought…” suggestions. So he bought it too!

Anyway, so I read it in a couple weeks and that was at the beginning of July when I was really busy. So that should tell you how hard it was for me to put it down. It’s brilliant! A 20-something girl, Franny, is trying to make it in NYC as an actor. Lauren Graham used her experience to make the fiction seem so real. I learned a lot about show biz and how it all works. It was very interesting.
A photo posted by Charlene Maugeri (@mrsmaugeri) on

The story is written in first person so the reader gets to be inside Franny’s head. I LOVE this type of writing because it’s easier for me to connect with the character. Franny is the type who over thinks everything and can’t see how talented she is. She’s her own worst critic and I find that very relatable. She also reminded me a lot of Lorelai Gilmore in that way. Other people have said that Sarah Braverman -Lauren Graham’s character in Parenthood- is also like that. I’ve only seen a couple episodes, but I remember thinking that Sarah was a lot like Lorelai.

It’s ultimately a story about Franny’s struggle through show biz and how she learns what’s really important in life along the way. There’s love. There’s rejection and heartache. There’s family. And there’s some tough decisions to be made.

While some of the story may be predictable (and really, what stories aren't?), I highly recommend it to anyone!
Have you read the book? What did you think?
Thanks for reading!
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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

What I'm Up To {August 2015}

Well folks, it's August. There's no denying it. It's pretty bitter sweet to me. I'm sad that summer is almost over and I can't believe 2015 is more than half way over, but I'm excited for fall. Although we still have like a month and a half before fall officially starts, it gets a little chilly in Ohio sooner than that and last year, Starbucks released #PSL's early so, I'm excited for this month.
Anyway, that's enough rambling! Lets move on to what I'm up to this month, shall we?

Creating: Images for my blog.
Wishlisting: Honestly, not much right now. Maybe some fun new sweaters for fall. Though I really don't need any.
Hoping: To keep up with all my goals.
Eating: Healthy stuff! Woohoo!
Watching: The Music Man. I've been watching YouTube videos of our show and I watched the original movie with Robert Preston again last night with my mom!

What are you up to this month?
Thanks for reading!
Linking up with Anne and Jenna
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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Personal Goals for August

Y'all, I failed on most of my goals last month. But you know what? That's OK. I was very busy and I didn't really expect to do that well. You know what else? That just means I need to work harder this month. And I'm fully prepared and excited to do that. So lets see what those goals are, shall we?
Spiritual:
Last month I was really excited to continue studying Proverbs with Good Morning Girls. But I failed during The Music Man. Miserably. I am on Proverbs 22 and they finished the book last week.

However, I am determined to catch up. It's only one chapter per day and they only study on week days so it really shouldn't be that hard to catch up.  They started Song of Solomon this week so I'm excited for that.

Physical:
I did terrible. Terrible. I didn't even keep up with the little daily Instagram challenges. I haven't logged into my fitness Instagram account in probably a month. But, again, I'm not too upset about it. And I'm going to get serious about my fitness and health now.

First of all, I am going to record everything I eat on My Fitness Pal and stay under my daily calorie goal. I will take my ItWorks greens daily and drink at least 64 ounces of water every day.

I'm also going to exercise 5 days per week starting next week when I get home from my work trip: 2 days of cardio and 3 days of strength training. For cardio, I'm going to try cardio dance videos I found on Youtube. I hate running and biking and doing any other cardio. I want to find something I like to do so I will be more likely to do it. And for strength training, I'll be doing Blogilates, of course.

Aside from actual workout sessions during the week, I also want to be active on the weekends. Whether that's just a long walk with Pearson and the dog or we go all out on an intense bike ride or hike, I don't want to sit around watching TV.

They say it takes about 12 weeks of living a healthy lifestyle before people notice a change, so my goal is that my clothes will fit better and I'll feel healthier and better about myself by Halloween.

Mental:
Last month I finished Someday, Someday, Maybe and started Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl. I really wanted to be finished with Anne Frank by now but I just can't seem to get into it. Anyway, I'll finish it this month and I want to finish The Fault in Our Stars which I hear is a quick read so this goal should be easy. Then I'll only have one more to read for my personal challenge within the Literary Ladies Summer Book Challenge.

So there are my goals. I'm gonna get back on track with everything this month as things start to die down a bit. What goals have you set to better yourself this month? Thanks for reading!
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Monday, August 3, 2015

Back to the Basics - Marriage & Relationship Goals {link up}

Well guys, July is over. The Music Man is over. And my business is [almost] over. I am traveling for work this week and then I'll be visiting my BFF in a couple weeks for a long weekend... But after that, I don't have any plans until Halloween weekend! Of course, I'm sure stuff will come up but it sure is nice to look at an empty calendar. I am so tired and so ready for a break. But enough about that! This post is supposed to be about my relationship goals...

Last month I set the goal to be a cheerful wife and I think I succeeded. Maybe you should ask Pearson to make sure, but from my perspective, I think I kept a positive attitude and wasn't all that worried and stressed considering how crazy busy and nervous I was.

Since I feel like I haven't seen my husband in over a month, or at least I haven't got to spend much time with him, I'm really missing that quality time. And I'm sure he is too. Quality time is toward the top of both of our love language lists, as I learned at the beginning of this year.

So this month, I want to get back to those basics. I'm setting a goal to go on one out-of-the-house date night per week. This should be possible even when I'm traveling because I'll be home on Friday and then I'll only be gone Friday, Saturday, and Sunday the next weekend.

I also want to put my phone away in the evenings (and maybe I'll get Pearson to do this too). I am on my phone way too much. It's ridiculous. And it's so difficult to put it away, so I'm putting strict restrictions on it. By the time Pearson gets home from work, my phone will be in the other room where I can hear it if someone calls - in case of emergency - but I'm not tempted to look at it every few seconds or mindlessly scroll through social media.

I am so excited to get back to a somewhat normal life that I don't even care that it's already August and there are only 5 months left of 2015!!! Ok, I care a little bit... How crazy is that? Anyway, I hope you're all doing well on your relationship goals even if you've had a busy summer like me! Be sure to link up below! Thanks for reading!
Marriage & Relationship Goals




New to the Marriage & Relationship Goals Link-up? Goals help our relationships grow stronger and get better with time as well as help us to continue moving forward and avoid the "ruts" of life. This link-up was created in hopes of inspiring your relationship with your significant other no matter your chapter in life and love. We would love for you to join us in making the things we do in our relationships intentional. If you would like more information, click here.




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