Summer of Risks

Towards the end of Mending the Soul, a theraputic group study I went through, I started to realize that there were a lot of things I did or said because I thought it was who I was…but it really wasn’t. I realized I had a lot of fear about exploring what I liked or who I was. I had been down this road a little before….(see the emo pics on my instagram) but this round wasn’t about rebellion. This was about true discovery and and end of fear! It was about stepping into who God really created me to be: free and fearless! One of my favorite verses is 1 John 4:18 “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” I’ve always KNOWN Jesus loves me but it’s a whole different ball game to embrace that love fully. To believe it and apply it to your life. To embrace the Father’s love.

So some of these things may seem silly or vain or weird or whatever. But they were small steps into stepping into my identity. I know its hard to get..and there is more to the story. So, if you must, judge away. They were ALL risks for me and that’s what’s important! Here’s a small selection of some things I did!

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1. Went kayaking!
2.-3. Colored my hair way lighter!
4. Lit sparklers
5.-6. Started eating things with peach in them! Green tea & salsa!
7. This X ring.
8. Chose quirky frames over boring, normal ones.
9. Painted my nails black. (I was so nervous and the girl kept saying, “UM are you sure you want to do this?” Haha )
10. Obnoxiously large earrings
11. Skull scarf!
12. Went out for Xtina’s birthday! I was so scared!
13. Listened to this cd. And was scarred for life.
14. Pierced my nose!
15. Went to a rap concert!

Special shout out to Karrie the counselor, my MTS girls, my sisters, Candi, Abby Woods, my Dolce Dolls, and many more for supporting my summer of risks!

Iggy Azalea

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Ever since I was an suburban elementary schooler listening to B96, I’ve loved hip hop & r&b! I realize I glow white but I have a weird talent of being able memorize rap lyrics. I just like it, ok? So when Christina asked if I wanted to go to a REAL LIVE RAP CONCERT….how could I say no? (I must confess, this was my second rap concert. #1 was Wu Tang Clan. Haha) We went to see Iggy Azalea- she is a female, white, Australian rapper! I KNOW! It’s crazy!

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It was at the Monarch Theatre in Downtown Phoenix- it’s right across from US Airways. It was reminiscent of my “going to shows” days :small & sweaty & perfect. Between the excessive bass, weird grinding, and dudes who though they were Drake, my face pretty much looked like the above picture the whole time. It was a people watching gold mine.

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At about 11:15p, there was no sign of Miss Iggy. Christina was all, “If she’s not out here by midnight we are leaving. I’m tired and hungry.” I was all, “yeah!” I was so tired and totally regretting that I wore mini wedges.(I may have taken them off and been bare foot…) At 11:35 she made a triumphant entrance and put on a great performance. She has fierce blonde hair and thinks she’s a thug. She does have a little bit of a mouth…forewarning if you look up her music!

She was a great performer, I almost saw a fight, and I left totally exhausted. A great way to spend a Sunday night and a great end-ish to the #summerofrisks!

Fight For Beauty- a must watch

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Last week, I had the privilege of attended an event called “Fight For Beauty,” hosted by Freedom City Church. Rihanna was sharing her story of recovery from, freedom from , and triumph over an eating disorder. I was crying before she even took the mic. You can watch it in it’s entirely here:

It spurred on lots of good conversations afterwards and really challenged me to think about how I treat my self and my body. I think I’m still processing the night. Rihanna shared about how she recorded affirmations and listened to them every night. (I know! That freaks me out to even hear that!) but here they are…so so so powerful. Dangl

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I’ve been slowly trying to read them in my car every day in the morning. I’ve already passed them along to a few friends. And now I share them with you! Such a cool night. Watch the video! And let me know what you think! (Listen for my shout out!)

some of my instafavs

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Guys I love Instagram. I use it more than any other social media platform. I think it’s because my fav people are active on it…or something. I just like it. I thought I’d share some of my favorite people I follow that I don’t actually know in real life. 🙂

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1. @letthelordbewithyou Oh Lord Scott Disick…you are just one of the most entertaining characters in all of reality TV. If you don’t watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians, you probably will think he’s just another rich idiot…which he is. But he is just not aware at all of how ridiculous he actually is…which makes his instagrams of bajillion dollar watches all the more entertaining.

2. @eurasia_cafe Wow…bet they never thought they’d end up on a list with Scott Disick. Haha Anyway, I love Eurasia Cafe in general but I especially love that their social media and graphic design is done so well! They sell/market coffee and use the proceeds to bring the Good news to places that have never heard. I’m a fan. 🙂

3. @fitgirlrecovered. I asked Maggie what instagrams she recommended and her response was, “What? Like fitgirlrecovered?” Haha but seriously- this is Rihanna’s health & fitness account. If you’re looking for a balanced approach to getting fit, this account is perfect for you! No “omg I just ate stevia! Cheat meal!” posts here.

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4. @WhereShouldWeEat I have a lot of opinions about most things but I am very passionate about good food– especially in the Phoenix area. This account posts about all sorts of restaurants in the Valley and is connected to a website by the same name. Every time they post I think, “Welp, I’m adding that one to my list!” A must follow for Phoenix Foodies!

5. @kristin_ess Sigh….Kristin Ess….. The genius behind/cofounder of The Beauty Department and my beloved Lauren Conrad’s hair stylist. I just love her style & overall aesthetic. Plus she has really cute handwriting.

6. @appsandapps This is an account that I just started following but I’ve already gotten some good ideas from it! They post the apps that “insta famous” people use to edit their photos and different ideas to make photos using apps! I would avoid reading the comments, though. They are almost as bad as @justinbeiber’s.

Honorable mentions go to @findthesloth (they haven’t updated in 4 weeks, but I love the concept!), @granmawithmuscles (Maggie’s other idea), @toneitup (super positive health account), @womenshealthmag (they always have fun weekend challenges that I never do), and me…duh @katiecannonnn.

Do you have any instafavs?!

My Experience with Mending the Soul

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Last night, I got together with 4 other women who are very dear to me- women who make me laugh and share recipes with me, and women who know most of my deepest, darkest secrets too.
For 15 weeks, we journeyed together through the Mending the Soul curriculum. Karrie Meyer led our group and she is A GENIUS. Seriously- if you’re looking for a great Christian counselor, contact her! Between Jesus, Karrie,and the other ladies in my group, I have had a crazy healing experience! I seriously feel like a different person! I think everyone who has a particularly impacting experience feels like it would work perfectly for everyone, but if you’re ever given the opportunity- go through Mending the Soul! I’m not going to go into specifics in this space (I’d love to share with you over coffee!), but here are a handful of things I learned that have shifted my perspective:

-It’s ok to let your self matter. Even if it feel uncomfortable, it will get easier.

-Forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean reconciliation. It may, but reconciliation requires 2 repentant parties and that may never happen.

-Just because someone tries to give their insecurities, fears, or judgements to you, doesn’t mean you have to take them. In fact, you can give them back.

-Sometimes just telling your whole story- and all the gritty, ugly details- can be insanely freeing.

-All people are created in God’s image, but they were also given free will. This means people can make really hurtful choices. And really beautiful choices.

-Life is not black and white. There are gray areas. Which I hate. Haha but it’s possible to learn to navigate the grays.

-Sometimes you don’t have to accept or reject an idea or relationship or situation. You can just sit with it and see how it feels BEFORE you react.

-Acknowledging that someone hurt you doesn’t mean that you hate them or wish them harm. It means you’re being honest with your self. And you’re opening the door to healing & forgiveness.

-Minimizing situations helps NO ONE. Again, it’s important to be honest.

-There is a level of freedom available in the secure arms of Christ that I never knew was possible.

-While community/relationships are vital to fulfilling our needs, we can help fulfill some of our own need to be loved by being kind to ourselves.

On our very last meeting, Karrie gave each one of us a bling-y shovel. She gave it to us to say- even though we’re all still digging through crap, at let we can do it with a bedazzled shovel and look good. Haha

This whole experience led to something I’m calling “The Summer of Risks…. Which if youve been around me you’ve certainly heard about..But more on that another time! I’m so so thankful for this experience and so excited to see where we all go from here!

To learn more about Mending the Soul, check out their website.

The Fourth of July! #redwhiteandbetsy

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With Betsy moving on the fifth, we decided the Fourth of July was a perfect time o throw one last hurrah! We celebrated with food, friends, and mandatory swimming!!

I had grand plans to do a lemonade bar and a million other Pinterest ideas…but I had to work every day except for the fourth…so I decided sleep was more important. 🙂 I made pulled pork in the crock pot and other people brought great food too!

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The flag pizza cookie was easy and looked like it was more work than it was! I used store bought cookie dough and frosting. Easy peasy. The cupcakes with sprinkles were on sale for a dollar at the store. Sold!

Continue reading “The Fourth of July! #redwhiteandbetsy”

the proposal: jen & clark 4 ever.

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Can I be honest with you for a moment, Internet? One time (sort of recently) I started crying while watching Saved by the Bell because I wanted a group of friends that were as tight and diverse as the kids at Bayside. It can be so hard to make good girl friends and Jen has been such an answer to my prayers! It has been so great to see her grow in relationship with Clark and tackle issues head on. Naturally, when Clark started secretly planning the proposal, I was elated. He has done nothing but honor her throughout their whole relationship. I think it’s rare to find a man who has character like Clark- willing to apologize, a man of his word, and more. Plus it’s clear that they are disgustingly in love with each other. Here’s how it all went down… In pictures:

Continue reading “the proposal: jen & clark 4 ever.”