Characters of Change

Today as I sat and felt the cool crisp North Carolina air…..I realized the seasons ARE changing.  Although, here in Carolina, it’s hard to determine our seasons, with 75 degree weather in December and 40 degree weather in May, it can be quite confusing.  But feeling the morning breeze across my face, I realized that change is coming.  Sometimes in life, change comes as expected, as clockwork, or maybe even as a surprise….its arrival is the only certainty.  We’d do well to be prepared and ready as no one can accurately predict its path.  In the coming days as the green view turns into hues of brown, red, orange or yellow, take deep breaths, allow the cool air to wash over you, and determine what role you will play in this change.

Stay well my friends-

❤ bbprep

Eccelesiastes 3:1-8

A Time for Everything

1For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:

2a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
3a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace

5 things every “Back-to-Schooler” should know!

GRRR!  It’s that time already! Some of us are scrambling for back to school items..hitting the Target Dollar Spot at pivotal restocking times to feed our stationery obsession.   Some of us have already made that transition from summer to school, right now as we speak.  Eventually as summer fades, fall will enter and kid free days will be endless…well until fall break!?!  But as our back-to-schoolers get hyped about going back, there’s 5 simple things they gotta know-

1.-School’s not that serious! Wait mom……before you stone me, deep breaths! Yeah its important, but not that serious. Students-don’t get overwhelmed with all the assignments, projects, gossip, trends, blah, blah, blah.  Take it in small chunks, plan your days, be consistent, and expect to be successful.  Trust me, I’m a teacher, it works.

2.-Having a boyfriend or girlfriend during the school year is a great idea! Again parents hear me out!  Positive relationships during our formative years lay the ground work for our future.  Going “steady” at the appropriate age and time can add value and provide avenues for personal growth.  Students-we are giving you an opportunity to make healthy decisions during this process…if we see that you’re not…you’re done!

3.-Social Media A Must!-If any parents are still listening….allow your student to snap chat, instagram, periscope, face-time. etc.  We live in a technology driven society and not being tech savvy now-a-days is a disservice.  But parents you must monitor the usage and set ground rules and cut off times for social media.  In my house, the dinner table is a tech-free zone, and all devices are off, shut down, and in a central location by 8pm.  Parents be firm, consistent, and let your student know that if they violate the terms……they loose the device.

4.-Be Sure to Study Last Minute-I know I’ve lost all of you on this one!  But studys show that students who study right before bed time and the morning of the test do better!  So cram on!  Well….don’t try to cram the entire chapter into one night of studying!  That never works!

5.-Always Pray-Hey I know school life can be difficult and uninspiring- thats all the more reason to speak to God about it.  He knows everything about you and can help in all situations, if you pray and invite him into your life, He will show up on your behalf.  With out a doubt…I promise He’ll be there.

So Happy Back to School Yall!

❤ bbprep

Partners for Life

Proverbs 5:15-23

Drink water from your own cistern,
    flowing water from your own well.
16 Should your springs be scattered abroad,
    streams of water in the streets?
17 Let them be for yourself alone,
    and not for strangers with you.
18 Let your fountain be blessed,
    and rejoice in the wife of your youth,
19     a lovely deer, a graceful doe.
Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight;
    be intoxicated always in her love.
20 Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with a forbidden woman
    and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?
21 For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the Lord,
    and he ponders all his paths.
22 The iniquities of the wicked ensnare him,
    and he is held fast in the cords of his sin.
23 He dies for lack of discipline,
    and because of his great folly he is led astray.

This passage of Proverbs is a bit steamy as we read about marriage.  A partnership for life!  Often times, society will have us to believe that marriage isn’t until death do we part, but its more like until I can’t take anymore, then I part!  Marriage is a covenant between three folks, God, man, and woman.  Should for some reason, the covenant becomes shaky, cracked, or broken, we gotta remember that all parties matter.  A partnership only works and is a true partnership when all parties involved are active, present, and doing their jobs!  In a marriage its just that simple…..the husband should focus on pleasing the wife, the wife focus on pleasing the husband, and together, they both focus on pleasing God.  For if God is pleased, the rest will fall into place.

I’ve been with my life partner, my husband for 16 years, and during those times time, I’ve wanted a divorce.  It’s when times were hard, whether at my hand or his, I couldn’t find the extra umff to carry on.  When I finally realized that it wasn’t about him, but it was about me seeking God, asking Him to change me, and to give me understanding for my husband, that’s when the turn-around began.

There’s no magic trick to marriage……just a willing heart to follow God, and the rest will come.

Seek to be partners for life-

❤ bbprep

Will you be my friend?

On the back row of the school bus, I’d been watching this girl who was well liked, but not popular.  She was cute, but stood out.  She didn’t blend in, there was something different there.  I went up to her, not really knowing her or what she was all about and said..”you wanna be best friends?”  Looking back at me, sizing me up, looking me up and down, she said, “yeah”.  Twenty-nine years later….she’s still my very best friend.  Friendship is one of the greatest gifts given to man-finding the one(s) who share your ups, downs, dreams, and despair.  But among women-friendship is a special treasure, finding that one gem or rare stone, is well worth it.  A sisterhood that plays out in sororities, clubs, ministries, it helps to have a true friend.

What makes a true friend;-honesty-she’ll tell you when you’re fat!  -Dependable-she’ll arrive at your doorstep for support, even after you’ve said you don’t need her to come.  Supportive-she’ll listen to your gripes and complaints about the rotten boyfriend she told you to dump 2 years ago.  Objective-she won’t agree with all your decisions but will give objective feedback and scenarios so you’ll be able to do what you think is best.

God loves us so much that he gave us friends.  The very best friend in Jesus Christ!

John 15:15-I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.   A friend that died for us so that we could live, love, and share his sacrifice with others.   

Will you be His friend?

❤ bbprep

Wow Wednesday-“Let’s Pray!”

Prayer? communicating with God.

Why pray? communicating with God, our Father, through the name of Jesus, using scripture, is THE most powerful tool we have against the satan.

Should I pray? yes.

How? by simply speaking your heart to God.  Simply communicating to Him desires, fears, hopes, needs, passions, for you and for others.  Prayer isn’t just a time for us to dump on God, but a time to be intimate with Him, a moment to be open, honest, and transparent…after all, He already knows.

Is there a guide for prayer?-Matthew 6:7-13

And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

“This, then, is how you should pray:

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from the evil one.

Can you pray with me? sure!

Let’s pray

Father, in the name of Jesus.  Today was a good day.  Even if it wasn’t, we still proclaim that it WAS a good day, because you made it!  Lord, we are soooo thankful for your son Jesus, that came to earth to teach us more about you, and to die for our sins.  Because of that, we are saved from the death of sin!  We are set free!  Never to die the death of sin.  Father, we pray blessings over our neighbors, our friends, our enemies, our government, our family, and ourselves.  We open our hearts to be the people you want us to be.  We trust your plan, your direction for our life.  We aren’t smart enough,or brave enough, to do anything on our own.  We invite you to take a permanent place in our lives.  For we know without you, we WILL NOT survive.  Thank you for being who you are.  We love you, honor you, and magnify your name.

Amen.

bbprep ❤

Desperate Housewife

  • 6am Rise and Shine
  • Prayer
  • Review Planner
  • Morning Routine(Husband, Kids, etc)
  • Work from Home
  • Errands/Cook Dinner/Clean
  • Relax with the Family
  • Bedtime

Does any of that look familiar?  Taking a glimpse at my day doesn’t look much different from any other wife/mother in the world!  No matter what race, nationality, geographic location, or socioeconomic status, we have a ” plan” for our day.  And the running theme……never taking time for yourself!  I know for me, its hard penciling myself in.  Taking care of my husband, children, and the household always seems to rise to the top, while my needs lag in the distance.  Having a need to run the household like Bree Van de Kamp…perfect and perky, all while wearing pearls is a goal most of us try to acheive.

IMG_0844
Bree Van de Kamp photo credit: ABC Series-Desperate Housewives

But being perfect in God’s eyes is what I now strive for.  I had become desperate for alone time, for me time, for personal time…just to hear my own thoughts, to seek God for MY benefit, to see what’s in store for me.  Desperation is a barren place, where most of us don’t wanna be.  The definition alone-“feeling, showing, or involving a sense of hopelessness”, is like a dirty secret we dare not utter, but that’s where I was. One thing I’ve learned, if I suck, it’s pretty much down hill for the family!  So being desperate led me to seek after God more and more.  I became deserate for him……a desperate housewife.

Psalm 142:25-7 (NIV)

I cry to you, Lord;
    I say, “You are my refuge,
    my portion in the land of the living.”

Listen to my cry,
    for I am in desperate need;
rescue me from those who pursue me,
    for they are too strong for me.
Set me free from my prison,
    that I may praise your name.
Then the righteous will gather about me
    because of your goodness to me.

Desperately seeking Him-

 ❤ bbprep

Is working from home really working from home?!

Heck yeah!  Let’s just get that out-of-the-way.  For all of you who think that working from home isn’t really “working”…sorry, it is!  Working from home is a blessing for some and not so much for others.  I’ve been blessed to work from home for the past 6 years and it was an adjustment, since I’m a chatty chatster who takes pleasure in chatting it up with the coworker-homies.  But working from the confines of your home is just as much a REAL JOB as it is working offsite.  The key to working from home is planning, balance, boundaries, and patience.

Planning-is my fav!  Planning for me is artwork in a binder.  I didn’t see myself as artsy or crafty until I began keeping a lifeplanner to organize.  Planning is key if you want to be a home based success.  Pen to pad lists have been proven to increase memory and save a frazzled mom a time or two!  (All in favor say Aye!)  Whether spiral or binder form, get a planner, write your crap down, and get organized.

Balance-BIG SIGH!  There really isn’t a magic bullet for this one, it’s just something we’ve got to achieve. When we’re out of balance it’s unhealthy for us and the people around us.  It causes stress, burn-out, anger, sadness, depression….it sux.  So balance comes from a place of realistically looking at your life, one chunk at a time, getting things done, in small batches, day by day, piece by piece.  Work-Life balance has to be implemented if you work from home.  Since home IS the workplace, lines are easily blurred if there is no balance.  Having a specific area to work in, a specific time to report to, and a specific schedule to adhere to, helps.

Boundaries-Kinda goes along with balance.  But set clear concise boundaries for yourself and for your family to follow.  If your “work” hours are from 7am-3pm Monday-Friday with a 30 minute break, post it so that expectation can be set.  Be sure that you adhere to those set boundaries as much as possible,.  If you don’t take it seriously…others won’t either.  Finally never put work before the family.  If you have a good daily plan or schedule, work hard to complete your tasks, and save the rest for another day.  Never work late just to clear you list….remember family first!

Patience-Be ginger with yourself.  I didn’t become a work from home genius in one day!  It took me about 2 years to get myself and the family acclimated to what my goals and expectations.  Over the years, these have changed, so I’ve had to renew the process several times.  Six years later, I think we have a rhythm that works well.  But I had to be patient with the process, and to pray when I was overwhelmed.

So let’s recap-working from home is most definitely work.  It takes planning, balance, boundaries, patience…….

and PRAYER-

Dear God-bless all of us who are fortunate enough to work from home.  Even if it’s not a fortunate situation, we count it all joy in your name.  Help us to keep you first in all that we do, to be good stewards of our time and energies, to have healthy work-life balance, to keep clear boundaries, and to have patience when we do all we know to do and things still seem to go wrong.  We depend on your love for guidance, comfort, and peace.  Thank for all things!  In the name of Jesus we pray-Amen

❤ bbprep