Memorial Weekend Musts

Every memorial weekend it rains here.  We get all excited planning our grand long weekend plans and then a big storm blows through and we end up looking out from inside the tent at the torrential down pour with shivering wet heads and shriveled up smores.  Sounds like fun huh?!

Well, it truly is. Ha! We’ve come to learn that the best times are in the unexpected, and we embrace it!   Rather than chasing other plans we just stick to our guns and let the rain come if it wants to.

Here’s 3 things we do every memorial weekend come rain or shine though…

  • We pick wild flowers to take to the cemetery in remembrance of our loved ones.  This is a tradition that I’ve come to love.  It’s a sweet reflection time for us as a family.

  • We take a little float trip down the river and then cookout hot dogs and roast smores over a bonfire.  Any water activity will do but you must kick off the summer season by playing in the water over the long weekend.  Sometimes it showers but I guess we are just used to that by now.  We just expect it and let it make the day exciting.

  • We have a deep long discussion about war and sacrifice and all the servicemen as we remember and honor all that it cost for us to live so bountifully in America.  My husband is so wise on this topic and I could listen for days about the history of America and the world in general actually.

Don’t forget your long weekend wear…

 

 
xx kc

How To Encourage Men

 

Since I was a young woman I have been attracted to men.  They are fascinating creatures made to appeal to us.  Why?  Because we need them.  Let’s get to the deeper point though… WHY DO WE NEED THEM?

We need them to be our partner, lead us in wise ways, and grow us into something more beautiful than we were before.  If you think about it, as women we long for a “soul mate.”  One who can romance us and tell us sweet nothings.  One who will protect and provide for us, never to leave us.  One who listens and offers us better advice than we can find anywhere else, helping us to discover and develop our best self.

Unfortunately,  We don’t always feel that we get all these things out of our men.  Likely, this is why so many marriages are no longer working out and women are trying to “take care of themselves.”  Too often it seems the better choice.  I believe it’s not too late though.  I believe in good men still.  I also believe that men are human.  Just like us women, we all make mistakes and are learning as we go.

Most men I know are hungry to be a man and provide a woman’s needs.  It’s simply in their nature.  As women we too often discourage their efforts though.  We need to recognize that most men are working on themselves just as we are and they don’t need those nagging reminders about all the ways they are not enough.  Encouraging our men is where our focus should be.  Building them up into all they were made to be!

As a wife and mother one of my highest priorities is to encourage the males in my life to be their best.  I’m always looking for ways to support them in their journey.  Here are a few ways that I believe help make a man feel like a man, as well as  grow into a great man.

  • Notice and encourage his courage… Is there a way your man or boys are being brave?  Tell them you admire them for it, and really admire them for it.

  • Give him praise for the things he does well or works hard at.  Also, say it out loud in front of others…  note: (admit how often we mention the ways he doesn’t do well then don’t find yourself there anymore;)

  • Ask him for his discernment or answers to deep questions or concerns you have… Be direct and let him have a chance to reflect with you and lead you to a smart decision.   (a good example is to ask questions about the bible.  continue this for some amount of days and it will bring about good conversation and challenge both partners together to seek wise council and sources.)

 

A couple of great resources for you and your man can be found here and here

live for the most,

kc  xx

 

5 Quotes That Keep You Caring

This weekend one of my sweet friends brought me over an aloe vera plant while I was away from home and when I returned there it was sitting on the back porch… nothing attached.  Just a plastic pot with gorgeous greenery growing from it.  You know what made it so special?  I had mentioned to her sometime in the past weeks how much I loved real aloe and how nice it’d be to have one of my own this summer.

It was love at first site.  I saw it sitting there as I pulled in and I’m sure my smile lit up the whole driveway.  The little things can sure matter and the ways we listen can open lots of doors.

It stopped me and made me slow down and ponder in a time I really needed it.  I had been getting distracted with lots of noise lately and it was a gentle reminder to me that sometimes all we need to do is listen.

This act of thoughtfulness made me reflect on much more than how thankful I was for the plant and the kindness, but it made me remember to stop and listen in my everyday interactions.  

When things get fuzzy with your self, or your kiddos, or you hubs, and in your home recognize that the moment deserves a listen.  Sometimes we get too busy talking out loud and we just need to calm down and listen.  We forget to let others talk too.  

It feels really nice to be heard, but try being the one lending the ear instead of the voice.  You’ll find many things work themselves out in those moments of stillness.

– here are 5 quotes that inspire caring –

Without a sense of caring there can be no sense of community.

– D’ Angelo

 

The capacity to care is what gives life it’s most deepest significance.

– Casals

 

Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.

– Covey

 

I like to listen, I have learned a great deal from listening carefully, most people never listen

– Hemingway

 

Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak.  Courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.

–  Churchill 

 

Live for the Most,

KC

Women Living For The Most… Featuring Abigail Aviva

It’s a pleasure to get to introduce you to Abigail.  She is my Young Living consultant.  We met through a mutual friend, Danielle Burkleo, and we’ve enjoyed a sweet friendship every since!  I have fallen in love with her!  She has the kindest character ever.  I love people with truly great character.  Character is so valuable and honorable.  

Abigail is one of those people who is the same wherever and with whomever you find her.  Always the most thoughtful and first to be of help.  Someone worthy of paying close attention to.  She’s like that sweet mama, watching and smiling as you fumble your way through, ready to offer you a cookie and milk when you fall off your bike.  

She’s got wisdom and she cares deeply about sharing it with other’s along the journey.

She is married with four children.  She blogs what’s on her heart at A Mommy Thought, sells essential oils @theoilsmarket, and enjoys home schooling her children.  She also loves music and leads worship at church with her husband!  

Let’s hop on that bike and peddle forward as we read some great perspective and encouragement from a wise woman’s words…   

Why is it important to you to be “living for the most”?

I think that I lived for too many years held back by fears, and those fears grew and grew and controlled too much of my heart and life. In the last few years the Lord has really been changing my mindset and restoring hope and peace in my life. I spent a good and long season off of all social media and soaked my mind in scripture and truth. I would workout listening to Bible teaching podcasts or worship music and just let the truth of God’s words flood my heart. We had walked through so many heartaches and impossibilities and the Lord truly did BIG miracles in our family and marriage. I finally got to the point where I let all that fear go and fully surrendered everything to the Lord… and He has been restoring and redeeming and overwhelming us with such sweet blessings that I’m forever grateful for His unfailing grace and love poured out on us. It’s given me a burning in my soul to live this life to the fullest, always pointing back to the One who gave it to me in the first place. I want my kids to live boldly, with courage and bravery… knowing that I have to first model that to them so that they can step into it for themselves. Living for the most brings glory to God because He is the Creator of this life that we live. It honors Him and my life’s mission is to bring Him glory, honor and praise… and I think that all starts in my home.

How are you accomplishing this right where you are?

I start every morning getting up while it’s still dark and the rest of the house is quiet and asleep, and I get my big blanket out, coffee in hand and sit on the floor in the living room with my bible and journal. I put on essential oils that help my mind to focus and I pray, pray, pray… for anything and everything that is on my heart. I pray for my husband and children and home and friends and ministry and emotions and everything. I ask the Lord to give me peace and guidance and grace throughout the day. Then I read my bible and write things that the Lord puts on my heart. It helps to start my day right to prepare me for what’s ahead. I need it every morning and if I end up skipping it, I feel the difference the rest of the day.

What is a good idea, tool, or resource that’s helping you in either family life, home, or womanhood?

I love writing Scripture on little notes and putting them up throughout our home as constant reminders to myself and my children. I play worship throughout the day, especially when attitudes (including my own) need to be adjusted. When I’m overwhelmed, I stop to pray and just breath for a minute. I pray with a friend or my sweet husband or just alone in my room. I journal my thoughts. I clean my house! It’s so hard for me to focus or relax when the house is messy.

What is a favorite book or quote that has offered you knowledge or inspiration?

This is one of my favorite quotes:
“How completely satisfying to turn from our limitations to a God who has none.” AW Tozer
I’m watching the Lord take my life and make it something only He could have put together. He has made beauty from ashes. He’s given me hope where I had lost it and He’s brought freedom in to where only bondage had been. Nothing is impossible for the Lord and He’s been proving that in my life over and over.

What advice would you give your younger self? 

My advice to my younger self would be to trust Jesus with everything. To stop fearing the unknown. To not assume the worst but to put my hope, faith, and trust in the Lord, no matter the cost. To believe that He is for me, not against me and to step out boldly in whatever He called me to. It’s taken me years to finally fully step into all of this. I let fear control my life for way too long. I would also tell my younger self to give more grace… more grace for myself as a woman, mama, friend, wife… and to give more grace to others because maybe they’re just doing the best they can. And to pray everyday, give thanks to the Lord no matter what the day brings and to fill my mind with God’s Word.

Thank you so much to Abigail for sharing these great ideas and insight!  

Live For The Most, 

KC

How to own your day…3 things your work space needs to get with it!

My husband and I built our home a few years ago and we didn’t think about having our “own” spaces…  Neither of us necessarily work from home so it just didn’t cross our minds.  However, as we’ve learned through this season of our life…(wild ones running everywhere) it’s important to have a place of our own to collect your thoughts and realign our minds.  

I used to think that was our bedroom, but the bedroom for us, has become more of a relaxing space to unwind.  We decided we both thrive when we have a space of our own that winds us up.  That get’s us going.  That stirs our heart.  For us it’s about having a place to keep us focused on our purpose, our goals, and our perspective.  A place to inspire our days and build our motivation and momentum.

I’ve been working this month on curating our spaces to fit our needs and fill us up.  I’m sure we will continually make adjustments but we both agree that having these three things in front of us everyday remind us of why we do what we do and they keep us moving forward with focus.

  • a word, mission, and goals board

we choose a word for the year as a center and guide, a mission for our life (our why, how, and what), and goals for personal, family and others in our life. We post these where we can see them daily. 

  • a daily rhythm/schedule, calendar, or planner board

I like to have some type of outline in front of me at all times of what the plan looks like.  I geek out on this stuff and go overboard, Jared makes fun of me!  You can have all three of these or even just one, but remember… “fail to prepare, prepare to fail.”

  • inspiration board… books, quotes, photos, hobbies, & interests.

This is really any type of inspiration in the room to use or decorate with.  For me it’s my bible and scripture, great quotes, pics of family, my camera, and any educational, self help, or travel/style resources

For Jared it’s more like his bible, favorite books about finances, history, and geography.  His hunting and fishing gear.  Photos of his loved ones and famous quotes that intrigue and inspire him.  

With these things visible and available to you each day, it’s hard to not find motivation and a reason to push forward toward your dreams and calling.  Start taking ownership of your day by first taking ownership of your thoughts and surroundings.  Put together a creative space where you can draw near to what matters.  

live for the most, 

kc

Women Living For The Most… Featuring Eleni From Convey The Moment

 

Meet Eleni!  Isn’t she a doll?  She’s beautiful no doubt, but her heart and soul are what makes her so special.  She has been a friend a mine for some time now, and she is the real deal.  Her heart is so genuine!!!  She loves to encourage other women and she is happy to share her insight on what it means to live for the most with us!  I’m so happy to have her here! 

Eleni lives in Canada with her husband and their adorable baby, Harlow.  You can find her on her blog  CONVEY THE MOMENT, where she writes, photographs, and shares about life, style, and of course “moments”  She believes deeply that each moment matters in life and she pursues this belief in everything she does.  She is always an inspiration to me and I know you’ll appreciate her perspective as well.  

So clear your mind of distraction friends and let’s talk…

“being in the moment”

Why is it important to you to be “living for the most?”

My personal mission is to live every single day. It’s so easy to get distracted by all the chaos in life, but it’s my everyday mission to slow down and live. I want to remember Harlow this small as she will never be this tiny ever again. I want to lay my head down at the end of everyday knowing I gave it my all… Focused less on others and what they are doing or how they are living life and more on us. I want to use my extra time to make others lives richer by giving back when I can and offering my heart every chance I get.

How are you accomplishing this right where you are?

I think the best way I’m accomplishing this is by staying off of social media as much as I can, getting out and living to LIVE, not to live to say I did. In this season of my life I find it SO important to take everyday for what it is. The struggles, the beauties, the gifts. To me being on track means I lived each day with intention and purpose and that guides my decisions and life choices. It’s really a strong guiding point.

What is a good idea, tool, or resource that’s helping you in either family life, home, or womanhood?

I love reading inspiring quotes to remind me of my intentions. It helps me be a better wife, mother, and human when I’m living a life without worry. Definitely a huge part of my day.

What is a favorite book or quote that has offered you knowledge or inspiration?

“live less out of a habit and more out of intent”

What advice would you give your younger self?

To not worry about the unnecessary. That life has a way of working itself out and everything happens for a reason. Worrying is a waste of an emotion, though sometimes it is inevitable, it is often unnecessary. It will not change the outcome, in fact it’ll often only make the situation worse than it must be. To me, that’s important. I wish I could have spent less time worrying.

A big thanks to Eleni for taking the time for this interview, and thank YOU for reading!

Be on the lookout for the next feature.  Coming soon!

Live for the Most, 

KC

Full Swing

The babes are playing ball again!  This time of year is busy busy but in a good way.  They are active and engaged in learning some valuable skills during this full swing season.  

Jared and I are both pretty athletic and competed in many sports activities throughout our school age days so it’s no surprise that our children enjoy that too!  We coach all of their teams which is a bit of a task on top of the norm, but that’s just where we’re at with that and we wouldn’t have it any other way 😉  

When I said it’s a busy season, I really meant it…  Jared loves it so much he goes as far as mowing a “field of dreams”  baseball diamond on our property… he’s such a boy 😛  

Every night they’re outside at the field.  I can hear them playing through the kitchen windows as I cook supper and I watch them run through the fresh cut grass with their little bare feet.  These really are the days, and I try to remind myself in those moments.  

Baseball and bare feet – xx 

Leisure Time


Haha isn’t that title funny!  I named it that to remind me to quit taking myself so seriously.  I’m in active mom mode all the time which is typically not leisurely feeling, but you know what- it should be!  We should lighten up more often and let ourselves do the leisure time fun stuff with the kiddos.  Remind yourself today to stop and PLAY.  Let some leisure in your life today.

Live for the most- KC

 

Gifts..

For the last year Jared and I have been focusing a lot on our finances and stewarding our money better.  It’s been on our hearts to be good managers of our money and not have any debt.  That being said I have had to learn to budget.  It’s been a long process and I’m still not great at it, but I’ve definitely come a long way from where I began.

One thing that I’ve learned through this process of managing our finances and household purchases it that it’s insane the amount of gifts we have to purchase!  It surprises me each month to sit down and look at how many gifts need purchased for various people and events.  

Please don’t read me wrong, I love to give gifts, I’m just making the point that there is a lot of gift giving for one to consider when managing a household’s responsibities.  With that comes a lot of decision making and I am a busy mom with tons of decisions to make daily so shopping around for various gifts and/or just the right gift within our budget was just something that kept wearing me out and leaving me frustrated.  

I recognized that it wasn’t a good use of my time and decided to eliminate the stress of gifting from my life during this busy season and just give cash.  It was extremely difficult for me to let go of wanting to be thoughtful and search for that perfect thing for someone because we all want to be caring and show someone we love them with a token of our affection.  Since doing this however, I’ve relieved added worry that was uneeded and no one has complained.  People, even kids love to receive cash!  I mean come on, who doesn’t have a wish list of things they want but need money for.  

This way I am still prioritizing gifts, giving people something valuable, and making it easy and useful for everyone involved.  

Another tip is to buy some blank cards in bulk so you can always have them handy to slip the money in and be ready to go!  It’s a much cheaper way to go too!  I tend to like it better even because it allows me to personalize each person’s occasion with a special message.

Who would have thought something this simple was worthy of a post?  Hope this idea was helpful in your homemaking journey!

PS… I don’t use this strategy with immediate family like my hubs and kiddos, we still do personalized gifts for one’s under our roof;)

Why mornings and evenings matter in your marriage…

When we were young and first married we never even thought about being intentional with our time together.  I actually remember a specific time when we were visiting with some experienced married people in our community at an event and they were all discussing and kind of complaining actually about never having time to spend alone together.  

They talked on and on about how once they had kids they slowly stopped spending time with each other because their kids along with the demands of life simply took up all of their time and energy.  

I remember looking at each other thinking these people are sad.  We will never loose hope like this, how awful and depressing are they?  Ha ha!  We thought something was wrong with them that wasn’t wrong with us!  We soon learned however, that we just hadn’t experienced that stage of life yet.  Once we got there, we began to relate.  

We recognized we better take control of the situation fast or we’d be in the same boat as they had been (which we remembered we never wanted to be in).  We quickly saw that they were right!  Children and life demand a lot of your time and attention, but what matter’s is that you don’t let it get that painful.  When you feel the pain,  you find a better way and fast!

We saw that if we wanted to have more time to collect our thoughts or relax our minds we had to make it.  We needed to take ownership of our time.  The options were slim, but not out of reach.  We looked at a lot of successful people and how they made time for themselves and each other and the key was a morning and nightly rhythm.  A time to just be present together, no agenda other than that.  No expectations even.  Dedicating to just being together and letting natural things flow from that matter.  Small amounts of consistantly over time make a difference.  

We don’t always get our way and hit the target, our time together takes shape in new and different ways all the time, but when we keep this important in the forefront of our mind we are pleasantly reminded of how valuable it is.  We have actually been striving to spend evenings together unwinding after we put the kids down, but we haven’t found our rhythm with that quiet yet still.  To our surprise, as neither of us are morning people, we have discovered a nice little morning routine that we didn’t really put much effort into.  That’s the thing… as long as your continuing to work towards your goal the right thing will find it’s fit.  Be patient and notice what your natural patterns are, then play to that.  

Keep living for the most and make the important things matter!