Month: April 2015

Pretty Hurts

Last night my husband and I were discussing some challenges that our 13 year old daughter is facing. He explained to me all that her mother said she has been experiencing in school, amongst her peers and ultimately how she views herself. We all went thru it as teenagers, not feeling as pretty or adequate enough to fit in with the “in crowd”. Not you, okay that’s cool, good for you, but that discussion reminded me of another teenage girl, or adult, that went thru similar challenges…me.

I’m not ashamed to say that I’ve always been on the plump side. I came into this world 8lbs 1ounce and now weigh over 200lbs. (I’m not ready to share the exact number, just know it’s not near 300lbs lol). I was always the “big friend” in my circle of friends growing up and still carry that trophy now. I would like to think that it doesn’t really bother me as much now as I am learning to love the skin I’m in, however that have been times or days where I just didn’t feel pretty. Going shopping with friends that were considerably smaller than me was sometimes a challenge. I felt like people were staring at me like why is that big girl in this store, she knows she can’t wear anything in here. More than likely that thought was all in my head and no one cared that I was in the store, it was all internal. It was how I viewed myself, how I desired to be petite so that I would feel pretty. That couldn’t be farther from the truth!

I love the movement of the plus sized girl or woman now. It teaches our young girls to love themselves no matter what size you are. The Lord did not intend for everyone to be the same size or shape, if we did it would be quite a boring world.

13 For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. 14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. ~Psalm 139:13-14

God designed us in His own image. We are tailor made to be unique in our own right! Now don’t get me wrong, I am not advocating for an unhealthy lifestyle. We must make sure that we are taking care of our temples, no matter what size we are. Regardless if you are short, tall, fat or skinny; whatever size you are, love it and own it honey!! I tell people all the time, learn how to dress your body type. A fly outfit that’s accentuates my curves just the right way, always boosts my confidence level; especially when I am having an “I’m fat” day. Even though that seems to help the principle that I want to leave with you today is that it starts first internally. Our outward appearance will always vary, beauty will at some point fade away, but our self-esteem or confidence will always be with us.

I cannot wait to see my stepdaughter next weekend. I’m going to make sure to love on her and tell her just how beautiful she in inside and out. I’m going to let her know that you never let someone take from you something that they never gave in the first place. Yes pretty can hurt sometimes, but only when you place it in the wrong hands.

sig KT

Adventures of my new hobby…Baby Shower Edition

Happy Tuesday GFs!!!!! I hope everyone had a wonderfully blessed weekend because I did!!! lol So let’s talk about baby showers…because that’s what I did this past Saturday. I had the pleasure of putting together and hosting a baby shower for my sister-cousin. Her sister and I put out heads together along with a few Pinterest pins and created a nice, yet simple shower that turned out lovely if I do say so myself lol! There wasn’t a theme just color and print inspired. Because she’s not “girly” we used lilac and light gray with a chevron print. I found a great (FREE) website called The Little Umbrella that have a (FREE) chevron collection and allowed me to customize to our personal color pallet. Everything from invitations, banners, notecards, favor tags, to thank you’s and games. Very helpful for a one stop shop with the stationary you need. With the limitations of the space that we rented for the shower, the decorations remained to a minimum. The small metal tins came from Target and the pom poms from Party City.

With all of that being said….this also gave me the ultimate chance to be creative and…bake bake bake!!!!! I decided to make dessert stands. All of my materials came from the Dollar Tree. I used various plates like these and these. I used candle holders like these and other vases like these. When it came to my cookies…I used baby themed cookie cutters like these. Needless to say I did a big batch (at least 40 cookies) and decorating was time consuming, but they were gorgeous! Along with the cookies, I made cake pops and candy coated rice krispie treats. I was thoroughly please with the end result and got some great complements on my creations (go me!). We also ordered a cake from Sugar Buzz Bakery (can we say yum yum!). Great turnout, great success. Baby Morgan is one prepared lady 🙂

Let me know what you think…until next time…

4.28.15

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Excitement

Happy Friday Girlfriends!

I must say Friday truly is my favorite day of the week!! I just wanted to say hello and explain that my post for this week will be shared via a guest post from the blog Sincerely Kasey Kay. I was honored that Kasey thought of me to share with her audience while she’s away on vacation (I could sure use one of those). I wasn’t too sure of what to talk about but she told me just to be myself just as I am with my girlfriends, and that’s exactly what I did! You may view my post here.

Cheers to a fantastic weekend!!

sig TW

Angel of Mine

Time of death 2:15pm….April 26, 2014 will be a day that I will never forget. I’m going to be honest; this will probably be the most difficult post to write thus far. April 26, 2014 at 2:15pm my world changed forever. This was the date and time that my Grandmother transitioned from labor to rest…

Growing up, and even as an adult, it was always the highlight of my weekend when my mom told my sister and me that we were going to travel to see Grandma. We knew that when we got there she would greet us with her loving embrace, a smile, a “Hello Plum” (her nickname for her grand-daughters ) and would send us on our way at the end of the visit with a dollar or two to put in our pocket (she even did this to us as adults lol).  We would spend the afternoon engulfed in laughter as she told us different things going on in her world, or what happened on the latest episode of the Young and the Restless. It was always a good time when we would go to visit, or even better when she would come here to stay with Mama for a few weeks. I guess I always thought that she would be around forever, or at least I’d hope that she would.

All of that changed April 15, 2014 when I received a call from my cousin at work letting me know that Grandma had been rushed to the hospital. Immediately my heart dropped and anxiety started to kick in as I didn’t know what was about to happen next. Thoughts of no God not yet, please spare her life…we need her here…among other things ran through my mind. That was the longest 45 minute drive to get to the hospital where they had admitted her. Once my mom, sister and I arrived, after a few hours it seemed that she was going to be okay and they were just going to keep her for observation. On the drive back home we received another call that she was being airlifted to Duke as a blood vessel had burst on her brain and they needed to do surgery immediately. Now my Grandma has always been a fighter. She endured a lot in her 87 years of life, and I prayed that this time would be no different. She made it through the surgery without any complications but need to remain in ICU for observation. It wasn’t until that next morning that my mother informed me that she had a stroke overnight and had been placed in a medically induced coma, where she remained for the next week. Words really cannot describe all that my family went thru that week. It was so hard walking in her room, holding her hand, talking to her while watching a machine breath for her. Nothing was as hard as having to say the final goodbye….

After being on the ventilator for a week my family made the decision to remove her from the machine and allow the Lord’s will to be done. This particular Saturday, the weather was absolutely gorgeous. There were minimal clouds, a nice breeze, just an all-around peaceful day. We arrived at the hospital that morning for the doctors to remove the tube. It was nothing but the Lord that allowed Grandma to regain consciousness after they removed the tube so that she could see and talk to her family one last time. The final 2 hours of her life she was filled with and surrounded by love of her 6 children, 11 grandchildren and 1 of her great grands. We each were able to go in to talk to her, let her know that we loved her and was able to give her one last kiss. I will never forget the way she looked up at me and was able to mouth the word “beautiful” as one tear fell from her eye. I will hold that moment deep in my heart for the rest of my life. Her face was filled with so much joy when I brought Sweet Pea in the room and placed her hand in Grandma’s hand…one last time…

I was not in the room when she took her last breath, but once I made it inside the room it was filled with my entire family. We all sat in silence, some weeping as the matriarch of our family had completed her journey here on earth and had transitioned to her Heavenly home. I’ve never experienced death in this manner before, especially not with someone so close to my heart. Hearing the doctor announce her time of death seemed unreal and I knew that at any moment someone was going to pinch me and wake me up from this bad dream.

Here we are a year later and I still feel like this is just a bad dream that I can’t wake up from. I have not been able to go to her gravesite since I watched them lower her casket into the vault. I just don’t know when I will be ready. I guess a part of me still doesn’t want to face the reality that she’s gone. If only I was able to hear her voice again, see her smile again, hold her hand, give her a great big hug and promise that I would see her again soon. Some say that it will get better with time, but I haven’t been able to prove this theory to be true yet. This wound is still very fresh in my heart and sometimes it’s just easier to not think about.

So as I gaze out of my office window, looking into the sky I know that somewhere up there my angel is gazing back at me smiling and saying “Tesha I’m okay.” Just as I told you that day, April 26, 2014, as that tear fell from your eye, and today as tears fall from mine…”I love you and I’m going to make you proud.”

Rest in Paradise Grandma. I love you and miss you so much.

Your Plum

sig KT

How it all started…The Journey Leading up to 12/6/2014

Catch up here…After our first meeting and making the decision to date exclusively, that’s what we did. We talked on the phone, learning about each other’s quirks and small things like that. With it being a long distant relationship, we didn’t want it to necessarily feel that way. As much as finances would allow, we wanted to see each other every two weeks (well that didn’t work out as we had planned lol). Nonetheless, we still managed to see each other at least once a month. I enjoyed my trips up because that meant I get to fly into NYC and do some exploring lol. We visited the Bronx Zoo, some good eats, and sightseeing. Went for a visit to meet some of his father side of the family at his brother’s wedding and we stayed in a nice hotel called Z NYC Hotel. We’ve had a trip or two to the beach because that’s one of my faves. Nothing like a good relaxing day at the beach feeling the ocean breeze…just taking in what God created!

Some of our more open and ultimately important conversations (we had a lot of them lol not on purpose just happened) stemmed around religion and our beliefs, marriage, children, and what was important to us. We wanted to do this “right”. We were serious about the relationship and wanting it to be right, not just right to us, but right for us according to God’s plan. We didn’t force anything; we just let it all happen. In our opinion and what we knew, our “right” way was building a better relationship with God together as a couple, abstinence before marriage, having a good solid communication foundation, putting all of our “secrets” or “not so good” parts of us out on the table, open and honest about fears, financial situations, etc.

When you get serious about a relationship, what’s important to you? Where do you stand on commitment, communication, religion, finances, etc.? Continue reading…

Extrinsic or Intrinsic

Why do I do the things I do? Why do you do the things you do?

Does your motivation arise from outside of you or inside of you?

Let’s discuss what extrinsic and intrinsic motivation means. Extrinsic: you’re driven to perform or engage in activity just to receive a reward or avoid punishment. Intrinsic: you’re driven to perform or engage just because it is personally rewarding.

Now with that being said, I’m definitely INTRINSIC in my doing/giving majority of the time. I mean there are some times I’m certainly more pushed by extrinsic such as studying for a test because I don’t want to fail, or reviewing notary laws before notarizing documents to be sure it’s acceptable by law. My “reward” (high) comes from the JOY I see in the recipients. That’s why I’m addicted to planning… it’s my drug of choice! There’s nothing more rewarding than the excitement my heart feels receiving “thank you” comments from people for simply hanging decorations or designing an invitation or passing out favors or even refilling an empty drink glass. There are just some things I feel I’m called to do that don’t require me to put a price tag on it, if you know what I mean. I pray that God continues to grant me the desire to plan. I pray that my creative ability has only begun touch the surface of what its full potential will be. This is one thing I hope my family never needs to put me on Intervention for LOL.

Have you figured out which motivation type best describes you? When you’re thinking about this, also remember to evaluate your role(s) in your church. Be sure that you’re not serving from an extrinsic motivation standpoint of what God will do for you because you’re serving. Serve at a capacity that makes you smile on the inside, regardless if no one ever recognizes you for it.

Until next time ladies, have a wonderfully blessed weekend!

sig TW

Sweet Pea Turns 3

Where does the time go? It seems like just yesterday the doctor was telling me to calm down and push LOL! Sweet Pea will be 3 years old tomorrow!!! (Holding back tears)

A few posts back I promised that I would tell you all about my experience coming into motherhood. You are probably wondering what the big deal is, women have babies every day. Yes that is very true; however my experience was a little different. I was considered a high risk pregnancy as I have the condition known as hypertension, or high blood pressure. I was very cautious when we found out that we were pregnant as I did not want to suffer with any complications. This was the case up until my 33 week doctor’s appointment. On this particular day my blood pressure was extremely high and almost at stroke level. I remember my doctor calmly looking at me and telling me not to go back to work but to drive straight to patient registration at the hospital and the doctor on rotation would meet me there. I will never forget this day and the fear that overcame my body immediately. That was the longest walk to my car and trip across town that I’ve ever experienced. I called my husband screaming and crying, barely able to tell him what had happened and where I was headed. I followed that with a call to my mother and sister in the same manner which sent everyone rushing to the hospital.

It’s amazing to me how God places angels right where you need them. When I walked into the registration area there stood a member of my church waiting to sit with me until my husband arrived (I love my church family, will post about them at a later date too lol). After coming off the elevator, headed to labor and delivery for observation, there stood my aunt who was a nurse at the hospital. This is just how the next week went as I was placed on hospitalized bed rest. There was someone by my bedside to keep me calm and pray that everything was going to be alright. So at the end of the week, my blood pressure had regulated and I was expecting the doctors to tell me that I was headed back home and they would see me in 6 weeks for delivery. Not so. My doctor informed me that I had a slight case of preeclampsia and they were going to induce my labor at the end of the weekend. **Insert panic, anxiety, and fear** My heart dropped. What will happen to my baby? The nursery isn’t ready. Her car seat and crib are still on layaway. All of these thoughts as well as many others went thru my mind as you can imagine.

So the big day came where they started the induction process. I was going to meet my baby girl the next day. I gave it over to the Lord and tried to get my mind ready for the labor and delivery process. I informed the nurse to have the epidural ready as I did not want to experience much pain. Well to my surprise that didn’t go the way I planned either. After 2 failed epidurals and failed narcotics to knock out the pain, I was told that I was a rare case where the medicine does not work annnnnnndddd you guessed it, I would have to deliver Sweet Pea naturally! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This made me panic even more. Now I don’t remember the pain, just that there was a lot of unbearable pain and l laid in active labor for 14 hours without saying more than can I have more ice chips lol. The Lord was gracious enough to make it so I only had to push twice before Sweet Pea entered this world mean mugging the doctors and nurses LOL!

And just that quick I was a mother, my life was no longer centered around me. This little life was my responsibility to raise, nurture and take care of for the rest of her life. Since she was 6 weeks early, Sweet Pea weighed in at 4lbs 8ounces and 19 inches long. I was only able to kiss her on the forehead before they whisked her off to the NICU, where she stayed for the next 2 weeks. Now I thought that drive to the hospital was long, those 2 weeks were even longer. I do not wish this on my worst enemy! That was the most emotionally taxing 2 weeks of my life! The uncertainty of knowing when she was coming home, if she was going to have any developmental delays, it was just hard…but God once again. Sweet Pea shocked the doctors with her progression, she was only on breathing tubes for the first 8 hours of her life and when I was able to lay my eyes on her that next morning she was the perfect angel that I had asked God for.

So here we are today, 3 years later. She has not suffered any developmental delays and is progressing as a normal toddler should, to God be the Glory!! She keeps Mommy on her toes as she is very energetic and full of life! She never ceases to amaze me as everyday she does something new that still gives me that wow factor of “I’m her mom”. Although I’m a little sad that she’s growing up and starting pre-school soon (update coming in a few weeks), I am so thankful that God chose me to be her mother and yes that I was chosen to go through that experience. I may not understand why I had to endure it but hope that I am able to help someone else that may go thru the same situation.

Well I’m off to celebrate with Sweet Pea. Tomorrow is all about her! Hubby and I both took off from work so that we could dedicate the entire day to celebrate our blessed angel!

Happy 3rd Birthday Sweet Pea!!!!  Mommy loves you!!!!

sig KT

“The First Step Is To Get Fed Up”

Happy Tuesday! I had a very nice weekend. After sharing an article about someone’s weight loss journey and having a conversation with the girls about our personal journeys, keeping each other encouraged, how to support each others journey, self-image and a few other topics it all made me think. I believe at some point in our lives, we’ve questioned our outward appearance and that’s what I was thinking about after the conversation. A very good question came up about when we reach our target or goal (whatever that may be), would we still be happy/satisfied or would we still want more???? So to backtrack for a second, the article talked about how she got started, things she did, and during her journey/transformation how people around her treated her and changed. To me, the thing that stood out the most was what it took for her to start…“The First Step Is To Get Fed Up”. With pondering on that question, I started searching for ways to become active without being bored. So this weekend, I had the opportunity to do an extremely fun (yet challenging) class. If you have one in your area, I recommend doing a GravityFit class. I took it at a place called DefyGravity. AWESOME!!!!!! It’s a low-impact high intensity class that will have you sweating, breathing hard and feeling the burn lol. It’s definitely on my list to incorporate as a routine when the traditional methods gets boring. Read more about DefyGravity here  and if you’d like to read the weight loss story click here. So I pose the question to you…Are you fed up yet?????? Until next time…

 

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