Five in February Challenge Update

Good morning, friends!! I hope y’all had a great weekend. We had a busy one full of soccer.

Our girl and her team did an amazing job this weekend at their tournament.

Because of the way the cards fell, they were placed in the bracket with the top teams in the state. We were set to play the #4, #6 and the #10 team in the state. Our girls were 24th.

Our girls showed up and played amazing!! We lost 2 out of 3 games. But we beat the #10 team and my girl made two goals!

Our final game we lost 4-0 to the #4 team but the last time we played them, they beat us 9-0. So that was a win for us!! Our girls are getting better and better. Many of those teams have played together for years and our girls are just beginning their journey.

We actually just learned that our girls moved up TEN spots and now sit at #14 in the state!! So very proud of our girls!!

In other news, ha! Today is the final week of my challenge! I’ve been at it for 22 days! It hasn’t gone perfect, but it’s gotten me back on track and that’s exactly what I needed.

If you’re new to my blog, you can read about the challenge, here!

1. I’ve continued to make my bed everyday.

2. I’m staying caught up on my laundry by using a method I learned years ago. You can read about that here.

3. Cleaning up the kitchen at night is going well. I’ve had a couple of nights where I leave the dishes in the sink because it’s late or I’m ready to go to bed. But I’ve been good about waking up the next morning and cleaning it all up as soon as I can.

4. Lists! I am making my lists and keeping up with all of our things on my planner. I wrote a post on how I do lists last week. You can read it, here.

5. And finally, as far as eating at home. We are trying, but haven’t been perfect with this either. We are, however, doing a lot better than before. We ate out more than we wanted due to not having a kitchen for a couple of days and travelling. But for the most part, we are eating at home throughout the week.

Here are a couple of things that work for me when I’m trying to eat at home.

Make it a non-negotiable. Do not give yourself the option to eat out. Unless, justified of course. Like for example, today I will get the kiddos take out because Jojo has a golf match this afternoon in Homer. The clock works against us here and we are better off to eat out. But I will still eat at home because I’m prepared for the week with grilled chicken and veggies.

Which brings me to my next tip. Prep, prep and prep. Now, I’m a little different when it comes to food prep. I will cook my meats ahead, but that’s it. I can’t stand soggy leftover veggies the next day. For me, prepping involves making sure I know what I’m eating each night, having all of my ingredients on hand and planning my day ahead to make sure I have enough time to cook each night. I also cook simple meals throughout the week that do not take long to prep and make.

Here are a couple of meals that I make each week.

Grilled Chicken, Rice and Veggies

This marinade is my favorite! It’s super easy to do. You can put your chicken breasts in a ziploc and let them marinade all day.

I can make a good pot of rice, but it takes more time so I use these instead.

Super easy, takes two minutes!

For veggies I rotate between broccoli and baby carrots or squash, zucchini and onions or brussel sprouts. I season them all the same. I spray them with oil, seasoning salt and if you like spicy then add a little bit of crushed up red pepper.

For the broccoli and carrots and brussels, I heat the oven to 400 degrees and then cook them for 20-25 minutes. Super easy!

For my squash, zucchini and onions, I cut it all up and stir fry it. You can bake these, too but Joseph likes them stir fry so that’s what we do, ha!

Taco Tuesday Taco Bowls

Having an assigned day for a meal, always helps when planning.

For my taco bowls, I put my chicken in a crock pot with a jar of green salsa and a taco seasoning packet. It cooks for 4-6 hours. Then we make our taco bowls which include the following:

Rice, Lettuce, black beans, corn, sour cream, shredded cheese, limes squeeze, avocado or guac…. honestly you can add whatever you want!

Spaghetti Squash

We use ground turkey instead of ground beef. I use this sauce and we love it. For the kids I do a pot of noodles and for Joseph and I spaghetti squash. Super easy to make, but it does take more time. Here’s a recipe that I found if you’ve never made one.

Oven Baked Mahi Mahi with Rice and Veggies

Super easy and quick! I season the mahi mahi with whatever I have on hand. Here’s a quick recipe if you need one. And then we do the veggies and rice I listed above.

These are my quick and simple go to meals. We also do burgers from time to time and my dad’s pizza of course. But if I need a quick meal, these four are my tried and true. I don’t mind eating the same thing over and over. It helps me when I’m trying to count macros.

Being prepared is so important when you are trying to eat healthy and eat at home. So just make sure you start each week with what you need and you will be set. Also, don’t be so hard on yourself. We can’t all be gourmet cooks. I sure am not so I just do what I can do. Thankfully, we are not super picky around my house!

And that’s all I have for today and for my Five in February Challenge! It technically ends on the 28th, but now that I’ve been working on my habits for over 21 days, I hope they are here to stay!

Have a great Monday!!

XO

Jojo is Fourteen!

Oh.

My.

Goodness.

Today, my sweet Jojo. My first born is fourteen years old. FOURTEEN!!

This sweet baby….

…is not a baby anymore.

Excuse me ☝🏼 for a moment while I sit here and cry. I mean, is this really that sweet baby boy that we brought home? How has time flown by?

Y’all. This kid is different. There’s something special about him that I know hasn’t been shown to us yet. God has something BIG planned for Jojo’s life and I can’t wait to see what it is.

He has the biggest heart. He loves Big! He is kind and funny, he’s loving and attentive. He loves to hug you and tell you that he loves you.

I love our evenings together after the girls have gone to bed and he sits and watches TV with his dad and I. He loves to spend time with us and I pray that never changes.

He’s beginning to really see what he wants in life and he’s talking more about the future than he ever has.

He has the gift of discernment which doesn’t surprise me at all. My daddy had this gift and I have it too.

I am sad that time has gone by so fast and my sweet baby is not a baby anymore. It’s bittersweet because I am loving this season of life.

I know that these next four years will fly by and he will be off to college before we know it. And I just can’t even wrap my mind around that right now. So I’m going to stop talking about it, ha!

My sweet Jojo, I am so unbelievably proud of the man you are becoming every day. It is evident that you have chosen to walk with Jesus by the way you love.

These next four years are not going to be easy. There will be things that will try to pull you away from who you are. But rest assured that you have an army of prayer warriors covering you in prayer every single day. Stay true to who you are. Be confident in the person that God made you.

Dream, baby Dream! Shoot for the stars! Dream big and work towards those dreams every single day. Seeing your dreams and goals come to life will not be an easy task. You will fail, you’ll make mistakes but learn from them and allow them to move you forward.

Love the Lord with all of your heart, mind and soul and your neighbor as yourself. And as Big Pop would tell Papa Rob, treat the janitor with the same respect that you treat the principal. I pray that you will always see people through God’s eyes.

You are a difference maker, a world changer. You are loving and kind. You are strong. You are brave and not anxious. You are a good friend and brother. And sweet boy, you are an amazing son.

Your daddy and I love you and we are so thankful and honored to be your parents.

Happy birthday, Jojo!

Throwback Thursday {9.15.17}

Good morning, friends! I overslept!! Not sure what happened… I guess my body needed the sleep. Thankfully, me oversleeping is waking up at 6 am so we are still on schedule to get the kiddos to school on time.

Today’s Throwback Thursday is from 2017. It’s a post I wrote during my grieving journey after losing dad. Grief is hard. It’s messy and honestly I still feel like I’m grieving some days.

If you’re knee deep in grief, stay close to Jesus. I hope this post

Choosing to Trust in God’s Love for Me

Y’all.  Time for some hard truth.  Since dad passed, I have not been consistent with my quiet time.  I took dad’s death hard.  Harder than I expected.  And the frustrating part is that even two years later I am still struggling.  There are days when I think I’m finally coming out of this hole and then there are days where I feel so deep in the pit that I can’t see the light.

After dad died, I quit church.  I quit reading the bible.  I quit listening to worship music.  I quit all things God.  I cringe as I write this.  I mean isn’t a follower of Christ supposed to cling to Christ during the hard times?  Shouldn’t we read the bible more, seek him more and rely on Him?  That wasn’t the case for me.  I put up a wall and turned my back.  I was mad.  Upset at God because I felt that He didn’t answer my prayer.

It was hard to finally admit that I was mad at Him. But after I did I began to feel like a cloud was lifting. A friend invited me to join a bible study group in her home. I almost passed on the opportunity, but I felt that something was telling me it was the right time. God used this bible study to remind me of His truths and most importantly His love for me. I quit Him, but He NEVER quit me. I was angry at Him, but His love never wavered for me. He gave me time, He let me grieve, but I knew in my heart He was calling me back. Back to Him. Back to His Word.

Joseph and I decided it was time to get back in church.  Not only for us, but for our children.  It was also time for us as a family to put Christ first in our lives and to seek Him each day.

She Reads Truth was introduced to me by that same friend who invited me to the bible study.  I love it because I can go to the website and read the devotion of the day.  It’s been a great transition to get back in the Word.  They also have He Reads Truth for the guys.

Am I consistent?  I’m trying to be.  I fail just like you.  But the desire is there and after over a year of not having the desire-I am thankful for it.

On Sunday at church I was reminded of God’s love and how His love for me and for you is never-ending.  We don’t have to do anything to earn His love.  He loves us just as we are and nothing we do can separate us from His love.  Y’all.  Nothing we do.  Nothing.  Let that sink in.  Can you even begin to comprehend how great His love is for us?  I know I can’t!

Is my heart still broken?  Yes.  Am I still angry?  No.  I am choosing to trust in God’s love for me.  I’m choosing to trust just like my dad did until he took his last breath.  And I’m choosing to embrace God’s grace and His love for me.

I hope you can do the same today because God loves you too my sweet friend.

Thank You Lord for Grace!

-Maggie

Our Big Pop, A Man After God’s Own Heart

On Sunday, our Big Pop went home to be with Jesus.

Big Pop was a man of God. He loved the Lord with all of His heart, mind and soul and loved His family so very much.

The way that he lived and was loved by everyone is a true testament of who Big Pop was. He was kind, selfless, patient, joyful, giving, a hard worker, a true servant who loved everyone no matter who they were.

I am so thankful for his example. And I am blessed to have been a part of his life. It’s an honor to call him my Big Pop.

During the viewing yesterday, they had his Bible out on one of the table displays. I wasn’t prepared for the way that God would speak to me as I picked up his Bible and held it in my hands.

You see, this was no ordinary Bible. It was Big Pop’s Bible and there was no denying that.

It’s engraved with his name and clearly it was used. You wouldn’t think an old Bible that is falling apart would be beautiful, but it sure is.

Inside of the Bible, there were notes written by Big Pop. These notes included dates which I assume are dates where he read certain passages. They also included things like when he had surgery or when he was diagnosed with cancer. He also wrote the date when Joseph preached his first sermon years ago.

If someone was sick, he wrote it in the margin with the date. He also included dates of wars, doctor’s appointments, presidential election results and who was playing in that year’s Super Bowl. He even wrote the date when Uncle Donnie got a new truck and when our nephew was saved. He was so very proud of his family.

He wrote it all down. The good, the bad, the highs and the lows.

It was all written down in his Bible. And I have no doubt that not only did he sit and read God’s Word, but as he wrote things down he talked to God about them.

This Bible sat on the table beside his chair and he read it every single day. There are even notes written from just a couple of weeks ago. He was so very sick and didn’t have much strength, but up until the end of his life he stayed in God’s Word.

As I held his Bible, I could feel God’s presence. I could feel the prayers and the love in Big Pop’s heart. And it challenged me. It made me ask myself the question, “what will my Bible look like when I’m gone?”

Will my children hold it in their hands as they share it with their grandchildren? Will they see that God was my priority? Will they see that I thought of them and prayed for them every single day?

Is my Bible on my table collecting dust or is it being read every single day?

Most importantly, will my Bible give them comfort knowing that I am in heaven? Because as I read Big Pop’s writing, there is no doubt of where he is now. And that bring me comfort. This Bible brings me joy knowing that Big Pop is right where he knew he would be.

When Jesus Comes, We Will Go Home

Big Pop knew God and He knew what His future held. He strived each day to know God more that day than he did the day before. There’s no telling how many times he read certain passages.

This morning in my reading, I read Micah 6:6-8 and it made me think of Big Pop.

With what shall I come before the LORD and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

So often, we want to work our way to salvation and God’s love. We think, only if we could do more or be better that God would love us more. But in this passage, God answers what is required of us. And it’s a simple message.

Do Justice. Love kindness. Walk humbly with God.

“These qualities of the heart that lead to a God-pleasing life have stood the test of time because they reflect the heart of God Himself.” (Louie Giglio)

Big pops walked a life that was pleasing to God. His heart reflected God’s heart. He did justice, loved kindness and walked humbly with His God every single day.

At the front of the Bible, this is what he wrote, “When I die, will I have made a difference? What will I leave behind?”

Oh Big pop, what a BIG difference you made in the lives of everyone that you encountered. You are leaving behind a beautiful legacy of love, strength and faith that we are all so very thankful for. We are honored to have been your grandchildren and we are so thankful for the life you lived.

God’s word is a comfort to us during the best of times and during the worst of times. Big Pop believed that.

I encourage you to start reading your Bible daily. Even if it’s one verse. Open the Word and allow God to speak to you each day. God’s Word is powerful. His Word is alive and active. Hebrews 4:12 says,

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

I hope you can be encouraged today by Big Pop to seek God during the good and bad times. To sit and spend time in His Word daily and allow God’s Word to work in your heart.

In one of the pages Big Pop wrote, “Love God. Love People.” And without a doubt, that’s what Big Pop did.

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:36-39

We love you, Big Pop!

Let’s Look & Five in February Challenge Update

Morning, friends! Today is Let’s look with Fancy Ashley and Erika. It’s a monthly link up where you can talk about anything!

So today, I’m updating you on this little challenge I made up to help me get my life back in order by implementing five habits.

You can catch up on this challenge by reading post one and post two

Each week, my plan was to update you and then share how I do certain things. Last week we talked about laundry and how I keep ourselves caught up and organized.

This week, I’m sharing how I plan my months, days and how I create lists to keep me on track.

I am a list maker. I’m visual and like to see what I have to do. And I’m old school and love a pen and paper.

So here are a couple of ways that I stay organized.

1. General calendar

Y’all. I have tried every planner you can try. Just ask my husband. In one year, I bought about 10 different planners. I just struggled to find one that worked for me. I swore that year, that I was just going to design my own!

But here’s one that I’ve kept the entire time and honestly, I think it’s “the one.”

Its from Target and runs July 2020 to June 2021. I love it because it has a monthly view.

But it also has one page dedicated to the day. This is why I love this planner.

I work best when I can see my day in one place. This one has the day broken down in 30 minute increments. It has a space for your top three to-do items and then a place for your to-do list.

I write everything down. From quiet time to making my bed to working out to laundry, I write it down. This helps me see my tasks that I need to complete. And I love crossing things off so this helps keep me motivated and productive.

In the box where it says tonight, I write down our dinner menu. And in the notes section, I’ll write down things to add to the next day or things that I need to keep in mind for some reason.

Joseph and I also keep a calendar on our phone. I am working on this. I’m trying to be more deliberate about putting it all in our phone calendar so that he can stay updated on all of our events.

I do love that I can have everyone down as a certain color!

I also have a dry erase calendar in our pantry. Again, just visual to keep everyone informed. I just started using this one…not sure if it will stay but I think it helps the kiddos more than it does Joseph and I. They like to see what’s ahead for the week, too.

2. Daily List

So I showed you how I have a place to make my lists on my planner. And I try and do my list every night or first thing in the morning.

But my planner is pretty bulky and stays in my work bag or on my kitchen counter throughout the day. So I like something that I can carry with me. I know that I could use the notebook app on my phone…but again I love paper!

I found this at Walmart one day and loved how it was similar to my planner. So I write it all down here and if I have specific things to buy like groceries, I write the list on the back. And it comes with me and I mark off as I go.

I am trying to use my phone more…we will see how that goes.

3. Master List

For years I would write tasks on my planner that were unrealistic. I would write down something like “organize master closet” on a random Thursday and then I’d feel defeated when I would have to keep moving that fast over each day.

So I decided that I would do a “Spring Cleaning” list instead. It’s a master list of all of the things that I would like to get down around the house. Joseph and I normally update this every couple of months.

This list includes things like, install irrigation system to clean out the junk drawer. It’s tasks that I can do when I have time. It helps me keep a visual of it and know that I need to do it. But it doesn’t make me feel like I have to add it to an already crazy day!

Seriously, this list has been great for my mental health, ha!

4. Shared Lists with Joseph

Joseph loves lists, too but he has them on his phone. So when we have something that we are working on together, we used the notes app and create a shared list there.

5. Specific Lists

These I keep in my notes app. If we are traveling and I need a list of items we need. I put it in the notes app. Or if we are working on a project, I normally do it on my notes app because that way it is always with me.

If there are books I am wanting to read, I create a list. If there are items around the house that I need to buy here and there, I create a list. I know, I’m crazy haha! It just keeps me able to visualize and creating separate lists keeps my stress level down.

And that ladies, is how I organize my planner, calendar and lists! I hope that this helps you in someway. I know I always love to see how others do things

I don’t always implement everything others do, but I take away things that work for me.

So a quick update on how the challenge is going….

Well this morning I made my bed! And y’all, last night I unpacked my suitcase and I put all of my clothes alway. All of them! I’m so proud of myself.

Joseph unpacked and put everything away, too!

Here’s my clean bench! No clothes laying in it like last week 🤪.

Laundry is currently caught up 🙌🏼. Trying hard to keep it that way.

I’m making my lists!

Eating at home has been a struggle because we were out of town this week. And last night we had to eat out because our kitchen is currently under construction.

So that answers my next habit….keeping my kitchen clean….well. Here is how it looks right now…

There is dust everywhere! I’m so ready for it to be put back the way it belongs.

When we moved in almost two years ago, this was a project we wanted to do. Since then, we’ve worked on our investment properties but after we sold the condo I told Joseph I wanted to finally update our counters. So here we are!

New countertops and backsplash are being installed today! We are trying to decided on new pulls and light fixtures above the island and we are ordering new chairs for the island. I can’t wait!!

Next up, we are adding a fireplace to our back porch! I’m so excited for that, too.

We were so blessed when we moved in and didn’t really need to do anything other than paint the entire inside of the house. So these projects have just been on our “master list” waiting to be marked off.

And that’s all I have babes! If you’ve joined me on this challenge, tell me how it’s going for you!

I hope y’all have the BEST day!!

XO

Hi, Friends!

Hey, hey!! I’m headed home from Hilton Head this morning so I’m going to take the day off blogging. I’ll be back here tomorrow for my Five in February weekly update.

I’ll be sharing all about list making. How I do it, what kind of lists I make, etc.

You can read about the challenge in my previous posts I’ll link below:

Five in February Challenge

Five in February Challenge Update

I hope y’all have a great day!

XO

Friday Favorites {2.12.21}

Happy Friday!! I hope y’all have had a great week. We are spending our long weekend in Hilton Head with my family!

My mom is amazing at cleaning and organizing so she’s been helping me get the kitchen in order. When I was talking to her about coming down with us, it worked out for not only my sis and her family to come, but my brother and sister in law, too!

Jojo’s birthday is next Friday and ever since he was three years old, Joseph has taken him to an Atlanta Hawks game. As he got older, we would let him bring friends and it’s become a fun tradition.

We weren’t sure if they were going to allow fans this year so we encouraged him to find an alternative. Well….

He asked us to bring him to Hilton Head to play at Harbour Town Golf Links. This course is famous for hosting the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing – South Carolina’s only PGA TOUR event. I don’t know much about golf, but apparently it’s a big deal to play here ha!

Well, here we are and today is the day! Not only is Jojo crossing this off his bucket list, his daddy is too! I’m so excited for them!

But anyways! Back to our scheduled program 🤪. I got a little off topic there. It’s Friday and I have a couple of Friday Faves for you. As always, I’m linking up with Andrea and Erika.

Last week I shared with you how I found an awesome deal at TJ MAXX for these adidas shoes!

Today I’m sharing another TWO amazing deals from Marshall’s!

Find you a friend who thinks of you when she comes across an amazing deal! These shoes are regular $108 and she found them for $29.99!

Aren’t they the cutest!! I was so excited! I linked them on my LIKEtoKNOW.it profile. They are regular price, but I linked some from Nordstrom Rack that are also at a great price!

I love a good deal!

Next up, is this Harley Military Jacket by Free People. It is regular $168 and I found it at Marshall’s for $49.99!

I wore it yesterday and love it. You can tell it’s made very well and something that I will have for years. If you are local, I found this one in Commerce!

I love my robe! I’ve had it for a few years and started to notice it was probably time to retire it haha! I wear it every day.

On a quick trip to Target, I skimmed the pajama section and saw that they had these on sale for $25! I just looked and they are still on sale!

They are super soft and cozy. I actually like it better than my old one that was fleece. This one is chenille so it’s not as heavy or hot as my old one.

So for old times sake, let’s bid farewell to my old robe!

And let’s welcome the new!

And for a favorite that you already know, my crew! Life with these five is more than I could ever have dreamed of. Joseph and I went for a walk yesterday and we talked about how much we love that our kids actually enjoy our company!

Our little family is what’s most important. And I pray that as they grow up, they will continue to want to spend time with us. As they get married and have kids of their own, I hope they will always want to come visit us.

A couple of years ago, we went through a crazy season. Our kids were always gone to friends’ houses and always felt the need to have someone with them. Sleepovers aren’t bad, but it had gotten to the point that we never saw our kids. We had fallen out of going to church and God wasn’t a priority.

Our pastor did a sermon series that literally changed our life. We took our family back and we haven’t looked back since! Life is certainly not perfect and we still have hard seasons. But God is our constant and we work hard to keep Him at the center of our lives.

Together is our default and together is the best place to be.

Y’all, I’ve been loving graphic tees! They can get quite expensive though! I’ve found some of the best deals at Target. This one is $14.99. I normally wear a medium for a looser fit, but this one is a large and I think I prefer this size.

This jacket is a constant fave! It’s from Target also and I just found out that they have it in black. It’s super soft and warm. You can wear it with jeans or leggings.

And that’s all I have for today!! I’m so thankful for you all. You read my posts and you’re always so encouraging!

Have a GREAT Weekend, babes!!!

XO

God’s Heart is Set on You

What is man, that you make so much of him, and that you set your heart on him, (Job 7:17)

A couple of weeks ago we read through the book of Job. This book has always scared me. I’m always afraid to read it in fear that the awful things that happened to Job would somehow happen to me. Am I the only one who feels this way? It feels weird to actually admit that!

When we read the verse above, i couldn’t seem to get it out of my head.

When I searched the verse on google, I was reminded that David also said this in Psalm 8:3-4 which says,

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?”

When David looked up at the heavens, he felt so insignificant. He wondered why God, a magnificent creator would care about man.

Job felt the same. And it makes me think about this: Job’s life was destroyed. He lost his kids, his wife, his home, his health….everything. He lost everything. But he still asked the question, “what is man that you make so much of him…..?” He was going through the worst season of his life, yet he still felt that God “made so much of man”. Job’s suffering was worthy of the notice of God.

Job’s trials had a purpose. I mean look at us today still learning from Job. In our seasons of trial and suffering, there is always a purpose. And that may not comfort you right now, but let me remind you that God takes notice, God is with you and He strengthens you-let that comfort you.

You are not alone in the battles of life. God is there.

The second part of the verse says “you set your heart on him.”

Our mighty God. The creator of heaven and earth. His heart is set on you. Our God steps down from His throne to be intimate with mankind. I love the way Tara-Leigh Cobble puts it, “God created and is in charge of everything, but His heart isn’t set on the mountains or on Orion or the Pleiades; it’s set on humanity.”

Friend, you may feel insignificant and unworthy. You may be wondering if God even takes notice of you in your suffering and pain. I want to remind you today that the Almighty God, for sure sees you. He is El-Roi, the God who sees us right where we are. In our anguish, loss and anxiety, He takes notice of us. His heart is set on us.

Gosh, that just leaves me in awe of God. Doesn’t it do the same to you? God makes us worthy, He gives us a purpose and an identity. We are His children and He loves us more than we’ll ever be able to comprehend. His love for us reaches to the highest mountain and His faithfulness to the skies. God is faithful. He is faithful when things are going great and He is faithful when they are not.

Trust in Him. Get to know who He is. His heart is set on you and He wants to have a relationship with you. And not just a surfaced relationship, He wants a deep and meaningful relationship.

He sees you, He knows you and He loves you just the way you are.

How can I pray for you today? Comment below or email me at maggieeterno@gmail.com.

I hope you have a great Thursday and I’ll see you back here tomorrow for Friday Favorites!

XO

Let’s Look: Love Language

Once a month, I link up with Shay and Erika to “look” at different aspects of our lives.

Last month, we looked at our coffee bar areas.

And this month, we’re looking at our love languages 💘.

Years ago, I read this book,

In this book, Gary Chapman writes about the five ways that people give and receive love. The love languages are quality time, gift giving, acts of service, physical touch and words of affirmation.

It’s so easy to show love the way that we feel loved. The challenge comes in when we have to show love in the way that our spouse feels loves. It’s especially difficult when the two of you speak two completely different languages.

You may be giving him gifts and all he wants from you are words of affirmation. When we know each other’s language and we speak it, it helps tremendously in a marriage and any relationship for that matter.

At the end of the book, he includes a fun little quiz that you and your spouse can do to find out your love language.

You can also take the quiz, here! They also have a quiz for children, teens and singles.

Alright, so what’s our love language?

When I read this book years ago, my primary language was quality time and secondary was gift giving.

During those years, I had terrible panic attacks and anxiety. I was constantly in a fear and panic state of mind. I say all this because I needed Jospeh with me 24/7. He was the only person that made me feel safe. So quality time for sure was what I needed then. And he was always so good at giving that to me.

I took the test again yesterday to see if I’ve changed and I haven’t too much. My primary is gift giving and almost tied for second are acts of service and quality time. I think it’s totally accurate.

I love giving and receiving gifts. They don’t have to be big and expensive. The smallest of gifts make me happy. I think it’s because the thought that someone puts into getting you something means that they thought of you. And that makes me feel loved.

When we were dating, Joseph would buy me flowers every month on our “monthly anniversary” and he would give me greeting cards all the time. All. The. Time. Receiving these made me feel so loved. I still have many of them in my memory box.

Acts of service also speak to my heart in a big way. I love it when he cleans up the kitchen after dinner or when he makes the bed in the morning. I also love when he helps me switch a load of laundry over or when he picks up the kids from school for me in the afternoons.

Spending time with Joseph is my favorite thing to do. I love going anywhere with him. What I’m loving the most right now is working on our investment projects together.

And now for Joseph’s love language. Well…touch, touch, touch ha! It’s all about the physical touch. Joseph took the test again and it has not changed. His primary is physical touch and secondary is quality time. When I was telling him his results, he said “see, I just want your body and your time” 🤪🤣!

He’s so crazy!

Marriage is not easy, but it can be very rewarding and fulfilling when we are committed to speaking each other’s languages.

Here are a couple of posts about marriage that I’ve written in the past:

Love is a Choice

Love and Respect in Marriage

I got to thinking about my kiddos and their love languages. I think I’m going to have them take the quiz. I’m super curious as to what each of their languages are.

If I had to guess… Jojo would be words of affirmation and physical touch, Mary is gifts for sure! And Mackenzie’s is physical touch. Let’s see how well I do! I’ll keep y’all posted!

Now it’s your turn, what’s your love language?! I want to know!

This was such a fun topic. Next month, we are looking at our perfect night in. I can’t wait to share it with you!

I hope y’all have a wonderful Wednesday, friends!!

XO

P.S. This post contains an affiliate link. Thank you for supporting my blog!

Love is a Choice

Good morning, friends!

Yesterday was a day, let me tell ya! You know those days when you drop everything, bump into everything, run late to everything, forget to put on deodorant? Yeah, it was one of those, ha!

But we survived (woohoo) and here we are…hello, Tuesday. So glad you are here!

So with it being the week of Valentines… I know, unpopular opinion, but I love Valentines Day. Pink is my favorite color and flowers are my favorite thing to buy for myself. There’s just something about fresh flowers sitting on my kitchen counter that makes me happy.

But like I was saying, with it being the week of LOVE (oooooo), I wanted to share something pretty personal with you.

It’s easy to assume that we all have it all together, right? Social media is a place where, for the most part, is filled with pretty and filtered pictures. I always try to spread joy in my posts and I don’t want to come at you with all of my frustrations every single day because let’s be real, that would not be fun.

But every now and then, I feel like I need to show you that my life isn’t perfect and that I have so much that I need and I’m working on.

Joseph and I have been together since high school. We’ve been friends since middle school. We have grown up together, we were best friends before we were dating and we have a very special relationship. But like all marriages, we have our hard seasons. We disagree and we get on each other’s nerves. We are human.

We’ve had a really busy season of life with work and kids. We’ve also added more projects and have expanded our real estate investment business so we have something going on constantly. We are thankful for the work, but sometimes the busyness can make things a little tense around the home.

When busyness strikes or a new project takes up our time, we can become very short with each other and quick to bicker over the smallest of things, ugh.

I know that we are not alone in these struggles so I wanted to share some of the things that help us get back on track.

First and foremost, we acknowledge and admit that we are being short with each other. Now, this doesn’t always happen right away. Throughout the years, we’ve been able to shorten the time it takes to acknowledge it, but it still takes us a day or so. And sometimes our stubborn selves just don’t want to acknowledge it, ha!

We can all feel when we’re at odds with our partner. We are short with each other, easily annoyed, we probably don’t say much to each other and we lay in the bed as far from each other as possible.

At times, we even find ourselves being quick to snap at our kiddos, because placing our frustration on them just seems easier. Ugh, I hate when I do this.

But you know, just as when we come to Jesus and admit and acknowledge our sins, we have to do the same within our marriage. Acknowledge that there’s something going on that seems to be rocking our world.

Once you’ve acknowledged it, you need to work on yourself. Yes, you, on yourself. Don’t think about all of the things that your spouse should and could be doing. Take a moment and check yourself. What are you doing that’s making things worse? Pray and ask God to reveal that to you I promise, He will. Ask Him to soften your heart towards your spouse and to help you love them as He loves us. Also pray for God to give you wisdom and words to sit and talk things out with your spouse. Because you need to talk it out. Don’t just sweep it under the rug.

Next, talk it out. I am someone who needs to talk things out right then and there. Joseph, not so much. So this has always caused some issues in our marriage. But now that we know that we are different on this, we compromise.

I give him time or I try to anyways ha! And he tries his best, to talk things out.

You may need to give each other space before coming together to talk and that’s ok. Allow each other time to cool down so that you can both be in a good mindset when you discuss whatever it is that’s bothering you.

Sometimes it’s a quick chat and sometimes it takes time.

Communication is key. Your spouse may not know that something they are doing is hurting your feelings or frustrating you.

A good way to approach your spouse is to say,

“Hey babe, yesterday when you snapped at me it made me feel ________.”

Many times they have no idea! Now if you are on the receiving end of this, take a minute to put yourself in their shoes and acknowledge that what you did, hurt them. Maybe you didn’t intend to. Surely you didn’t. Apologize and tell them.

Find ways to help you understand each other and promise each other to do and be better.

Forgive each other and move forward. Don’t keep bringing up the past. Just as God doesn’t bring up our past mistakes, don’t do it to your spouse.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

Always, always assume the best of your spouse. This is a big one. After God, they are the most important relationship in your life. When the enemy tries to come at you with lies about your spouse, don’t let him. You know your spouse. You know they love you. Don’t fall in that trap.

Show your spouse love. Love is action. Figure out their love language and speak it frequently.

“If you truly want to love someone begin in small ways.” (Gary Chapman)

I know that there are bigger issues in a marriage that may require professional help. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for it. Find a marriage counselor. It’s ok to need help.

We can’t be at peace within ourselves without first, seeking God. We can’t acknowledge and admit and work on ourselves without God’s help. We can’t assume the best without God. But with God, nothing is imposible. Nothing is too far gone.

You may feel frustrated in your marriage right now. I encourage you to seek Jesus. Understand that only He can fill the void in your heart. Our spouses will fail us, but Jesus never will. We can not except our spouse to fill our every need. Only Jesus can do that.

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

Be willing to be unhappy while working things out. Our pastor said this on Sunday and it made so much sense. We can be joyful in all circumstances even when we aren’t happy about them.

Ask God to give you joy amidst the hard times. Choose to be ok with the fact that things aren’t great right now, but if you keep fighting and working things out, they will get better. You will experience happiness in your marriage again.

You may think that your marriage is too far gone. Or that there is no hope left. I will say it again, Nothing is too far gone for God. Choose today to fight.

Love is not a feeling. Love is a choice. A choice that we make to love one another no matter what. For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.

Choose love, today.

“Life is not over until it is over. Today is the day to turn your life in a positive direction.” (Gary Chapman)

I hope this encouraged you today.

Have a great Tuesday!

XO