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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Be {NEAR} me


I'm not going to lie - I started listening to Christmas music before Thanksgiving came around. I know, I know. I'm always the person that stresses the importance of not letting one holiday overtake the other... And I let it happen! No shame in my game though.

Have ya'll heard the new Lauren Daigle Christmas CD? Goodness, it makes me feel all kinds of feels. I especially love her "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" because of the New Orleans feel it has to it. I grew up listening to jazz music (thanks dad) so anytime I can get a taste of it, I'm always taken back to my childhood days when I didn't appreciate the music then.

I think we can take for granted the lyrics and meanings behind songs, especially Christmas songs. They're full of hope, rejoicing, and the fact that we can celebrate these things, is a miracle. For example, the following lyrics are from "Away in a Manger" (Third Day version):

Be near me Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay
Close by me forever and love me, I pray...

 
Don't you ask those words daily?? I don't know about ya'll, but I'm always thinking, "God don't fail me now!" My point is this - be sure to embrace the holiday season and all that it stands for. For me, Christmas is a time of rebirth, the closing of a chapter and the start of a new chapter. It's a time of reverence in my otherwise chaotic life, and a time to slow down.
 
How are you spending your time during this Christmas season?

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Monday, December 5, 2016

It's the most wonderful time...

Goodness, where have these last couple of weeks gone to?? Somehow, I think God thought I could handle some more speed in my life and alas, He giveth my friends. But it's been all wonderful - minus the sickly cooties of course. But let's catch up!
 
READING// Does the bible count? We've been working through Jeremiah for a bible study we're starting tomorrow. Jeremiah requires a bit of research on our parts because it's filled with so much. Even though it's part of the Old Testament, there is always truth and application.
 
EATING// I'm kind of in a cooking slump (again, I'm blaming sickly cooties). So I'm starting to peruse Pinterest again to get some ideas. Anything crock pot friendly is a must because I have about a 45 minute commute from work to home, so the minimal amount of prepping is key. We both love to cook so it's weird being in a slump...
 
DRINKING// All the Starbucks holiday drinks. It's like they know me. And trying to be better about drinking more water. My body is shriveled up from lack of water.
 
DREAMING// Of a white Christmas. Who am I kidding, we're in Florida. But I am dreaming of all the wonderful things that Christmas brings - renewed hope, sights, sounds, smells, warmth in the hearts. I feel like life slows down a little when Christmas comes around and that's something I'm craving right now.
 
PLANNING// For the future, naturally, because 2017 is right around the corner. 2016 has been quite a year and we've really been so grateful for every moment. We're excited to see what God has in store for us.

A few weeks ago, our sweet friend snap some photos of us to send out with our Christmas cards. Hunter and I are naturally a goofy couple, always laughing and cutting up, so it was only natural that these pictures reflect our marriage and who we are.




 
Life's too short to be serious. If you're from the area, Sara Beth is a mastermind and so wonderful. Have ya'll done your Christmas shopping? I know folks that have been done and are totally relaxed about it all. I've done most of mine... I'm just totally losing track of all time this year!
 
Let's enjoy this Monday friends. We've been finally getting some rain down here and my plants are thoroughly soaking it all up. I think cooler temps are coming our way too - thank the good LORD! My deodorant is tired of working in overdrive, ha! Happy Monday, friends!
 
 


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Monday, November 21, 2016

Gratefulness this week of Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from the Welborns!
 
I absolutely love this time of year! With the holidays rolling in that bring so much joy and reverie in a world of chaos, it brings balm to an otherwise charred and tired soul. We spent some time with our 7th grade Sunday school class yesterday talking about all the things we're grateful for. For a group of 12 year old girls, they're pretty wise beyond their years.
 
We talked of family and friends, homes and school, sports competitions and arts, God and His good love for us. I shared that I was personally grateful for modern medicine, friendships that are deeply centered around God, and a church family that fully believes in going against the grain of life. We all really have so much to be grateful for.
 
Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on what this past year held for us all. Whether it was good, bad, or a mixture, you're here now and God saw you through it. I truly cannot believe we're at the end of 2016 and looking at 2017 head on. I'm so thankful for a year that brought many new adventures in all the areas of our lives and yes, there were some growing pains involved, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.
 
So find something to be grateful for today and meditate on it. Give thanks to the Big Guy for his faithfulness and just love for you. I encourage you to do that every day of your life because viewing the glass half-full really can make a difference in your daily attitude. On this cold, chilly Monday, I'm eternally grateful for this wonderful life I get to live.

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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Christmas in a {CUP}

 
Just this morning I stopped by Starbucks on my way into work and decided to treat myself to a yummy Christmas drink - Grande Crème Brulee Frappuchino. Because who doesn't love Christmas in a cup, filled with lots of sugary goodness?? I have to say, the results of last night's election did make coming into work early, early this morning a tad bit easier.
 
I intentionally remain mum about my views on politics on the interwebs simply because of a couple of reasons: ONE being that I currently work in the Florida Legislature so I don't like to mix business with pleasure (I fully believe in keeping those things separate meaning work/politics doesn't and will not ever grace my personal life); TWO being people. My daddy always said one of the things you never talk about at the dinner table is politics because it can ruin a perfectly good meal.
 
So I've remained mum throughout this entire god-awful, mudslinging presidential race. I've watched as friends and family have torn each other apart, spewed foul words and hatred from their mouths, and I've been amazed daily by people and their actions. This blog post is the only thing you will hear from me about any of this mess on the interwebs and that's it. If you want to know where I stand on things, who I voted for, etc., feel free to contact me personally. I'm an open book and stand by my beliefs and convictions.
 
But I do want to address my brothers and sisters in Christ in this moment - I am disgusted and disappointed in many of you. Not all, but some of you resorted to total disrespect for others, their beliefs, their personal lifestyles, and then you went to church on Sunday and worshipped. Quite the oxymoron if I say so myself. I have many friends who I don't necessarily agree with on certain things but I would NEVER resort to name-calling, belittling, and/or judgement. Whether you were #trumptrain or #imwithher, I saw it from both sides.
 
Post-election, I'm now seeing brothers and sisters in Christ who are truly falling apart because THEIR candidate didn't get elected. My question and challenge to you is this - where is your faith at?? Who do you answer to at the end of the day and this life?? As far as I'm concerned, I answer to one Person and one Person alone. GOD. Regardless if Trump won or Clinton won, at the end of the day I answer to my MAKER and my purpose for being placed here at this time never changes. To my brothers and sisters in Christ who are literally acting as if the world has ended - Get a grip.
 
Harsh, much? Probably. But seriously. Your purpose that GOD has given you (not some man with a bad hairdo or a woman with ugly suits) has not changed. YOU were placed here to serve GOD, not the POTUS. Recognize that your life in fact isn't over and start praying for our nation, our people, for God's will to be done. Because at the end of the day, God is SOVEREIGN and nothing happens without His knowing.
 
Happy Wednesday, folks. Again, get a grip.

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Monday, November 7, 2016

Time {CHANGE}

With the time change this past weekend, I was convinced I was running late to work this morning because the sun was shining bright and early. Alas, I wasn't and it's already been a wonderful Monday morning! I'm pretty sure the weekend we had plays a major factor into how the start of our weeks will go.
 
We spent some time Saturday in a sweet little coastal town not too far from us at their Seafood Festival. If you're ever in the area of Apalachicola, be sure to stop and shop there. If you're a microbrewery kind of person, they've got a great brewery there. Of course, be sure to eat some oysters while you're in town since that's what they're known for.
 
 
 
I'm usually always on the go whether it's running around town or busying myself with things to do around the house. Hunter always says, "Do you ever slow down?" Well friends, I did this past weekend. I literally lounged on the couch for about 2-3 hours early Saturday morning while waiting on Hunter to get back from hunting. And wouldn't you know, we spent yesterday afternoon lounging in our new-to-us hammock while sipping on sweet tea. The mere fact that I was still this past weekend was so nice and refreshing!
 
 
My prayers today are that each of you are having a wonderful Monday thus far and your week will be even better. Go ahead and get that Starbucks drink you've been eyeing. You deserve it.
 


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Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The {ICKY} stuff

 
I recently acquired a book from a friend of mine called "The Resolution for Women" by Priscilla Shirer (she's in the movie War Room) and within the first few pages, I knew it was going to be a tough book to get through. I'm not a feel good book/sermon type of gal. I like the nitty gritty, the honest and in-your-face kind of deals. The kind of conversations that leave you thirsting for more knowledge... The uncomfortable stuff I guess.
 
There was a point in the book I came to last night that just really resonated with me and I wanted to share it with ya'll:
 
"And with one final bite of the most eye-opening dessert date I may have ever had, I realized this feeling had a name: discontentment. He shows up at your doorstep just like mine, eager to step inside and make himself at home. But instead of only coming for short visits on rare occasions, he refuses to leave, spreading his baggage everywhere, filling up corners of your space that you thought you'd locked up to this odious intruder. He comes. He lingers. He robs you of your years. Then before you know it, you've missed out on the joys in the journey, the growth that comes from battling through the difficulties, the sweet and savory experience of creating the memories."
 
Uhm, can I get an amen and another slice of humble pie, puh-leeze?? More often than not, I'm always looking ahead. I'm naturally a planner - I want to know the when's, the where's, the who's. And so many times I've wasted away those moments of the here and now because I was so concerned with the next step or phase.
 
Let's take back our time and tell Mr. Discontentment "screw you" because in reality, we're only given this one life to live. As I've been nearing my 30th birthday, I've honestly been dreading it because again, Mr. Discontentment reminded me that I wasn't exactly where I envisioned I would be. But like I reminded myself (and told him to go pound sand), where I am is SOOOOO much better than I could've ever imagined. Yes, I'm still in debt to my student loans; yes, I don't have a kid yet (totally thought I'd be married with 1.5 kids by 25.... get a grip). But gosh darn it, I've got a man that loves the hell out of me, a beautiful little country home with 2 pups to drive me wild, family and friends that would die for me.
 
Take back your moments and embrace them for all that they are because it's your life to live, and no one else's.

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Monday, October 31, 2016

Life lived with {OTHERS}

 
 
This past weekend, we hosted a BBQ/housewarming party at our house. The whole get-up was complete with cornhole games, bonfire and s'mores, and the best dadgum BBQ you have ever tasted. Of course we had football games on in the background - what kind of southern people would we be if we didn't have football on?? Bad southern people, that's what.
 
We spent yesterday in one of our most favorite little towns - Thomasville, GA. Friends of ours welcomed us with open arms and yummy pizza. If you're from the area or traveling through, be sure to swing by Buzzery's in Boston, Georgia. You've never had pizza like this one. I'm sure folks from up north would laugh at it, but then I'll laugh at your adorable attempts of trying to cook southern food. HA! #butterislife #wefryeverything
 
As we were traveling back home yesterday, we couldn't help but just sit in awe and wonder at the blessings we have in our lives. The love that we receive from family and friends; our home and the safe haven it provides; the church family that surrounds us with support and love. It's all rather overwhelming when you take into account every.little.thing that God has done for us. Even on the stinkiest days, we still can say that God has been and is too good to us.
 
So remember this friends as you make your way to work, school, or toting kids around today - life really is beautiful. Sometimes, the moments aren't so great or the situations aren't so great. But life is way too short to be lived unhappy, negative, etc. Learn to embrace each moment as they come, whether it be blessings or learning curves for the next chapter in your life.
 
Happiest of Monday's and happy Halloween!

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