Happy New Year Everyone!
I’m excited to share some things I learned in 2015! I used Emily P. Freeman’s (emilypfreeman.com) categories but changed one slightly: Habits & Rhythms, Finds & Favourites, Calling & Ministry and Soul & Spirit. Enjoy and feel free to comment and share what you’ve learned in 2015!!
What I Learned in 2015…
Habits & Rhythms
1. Instead of checking my phone first thing in the morning, I drink my coffee and read something life-giving.
It’s so easy to wake up, turn my phone off of airplane mode, and check my messages or Instagram FIRST THING when I wake up. It’s almost like I want an instant distraction from my day that hasn’t even started. But I realized it’s more important to take some mental space, get my son breakfast, drink my coffee and read something like a devotional or my bible to clear my head and get my heart in the right place, first thing.
2. Having a bedtime routine is vital in order for me to get good sleep.
When I first got pregnant, I had some serious sleeping issues. What I’ve found is so important for me is to stick to a consistent and relaxing bedtime routine. Usually, my husband and I unwind by watching Netflix. Then around 9:30 I head upstairs to get ready for bed, sometimes I take a bath. Then at 10, we chat in bed for about half an hour, and lights out by 10:30. It really helps me sleep better when I’m in a good bedtime routine!
3. As a stay at home mom, it’s important to try and get out every day.
When I first had my son, it was harder to get out of the house. I’m not sure what it will be like once our daughter is born, but once Landon got older, I realized how much we BOTH needed to get out of the house. So, each day we plan for a walk or a Starbucks date/playing with the train table at Indigo or a visit with a friend or a library visit, etc. It makes a huge difference in my sanity when we’ve had a good outing. 🙂
Finds & Favourites
1. One of the best books I’ve read this year (still reading) is Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman.
This book has given my soul space to breathe, as Emily describes it. The words that are sticking with me and changing my heart are “Celebrate your smallness.” How counter cultural this is!! But my soul has craved and needed this truth. I’m still in the middle of it and am intentionally reading it slowly to truly savour it’s goodness.
2. The Influence Network is a wonderful online community of women to be a part of.
I don’t even remember how I came across The Influence Network this past spring, but when I did, I felt a prompting to join. It’s only $10 a month, which includes one free class each month. The women that are a part of this network are God-loving, inspiring, humble, authentic women. I’ve never met any of them, but I follow several through Instagram and the way they live their lives is truly inspiring. The classes each month have been life-changing for me. I can’t wait to continue with it in 2016.
3. doTERRA Essential Oils are fun, interesting to learn about and actually work!
My counsellor is the one who first told me about doTERRA essential oils. I started using various ones in the spring to help with energy, anxiety, sleep, etc. I took a bit of a break from them when I got pregnant because I wasn’t sure which ones were completely safe to use. But we recently started putting “Wild Orange” in a diffuser in the mornings and I love it. I think they are a really interesting avenue for health and I want to explore them even more in 2016.
Calling & Ministry
1. I feel more alive and fully myself when I’m consistently writing.
Sometimes I feel insecure about having a blog or writing in a more public way because I never want people to think that I think I know it all or that what I have to say is super important. But I’ve realized that’s just a lie from the enemy and that he’d rather encourage me to bury my gifts than to use them. So I’m writing and blogging and really just enjoying the process. I’m not sure where it will lead, but I love the outlet and the creative process and I want to develop myself further in this area.
2. God always has a plan, even when we have no clue what that plan is.
Some big news that I’ll be writing more about in the New Year is my family and I are moving to a new community and we are church planting there! Crazy crazy crazy. It’s honestly been such a whirlwind month. My husband finished seminary and this all has taken shape over the past month or so. God even provided us with a home in the community we feel called to! So much more to say but I’ll leave it at this… God had a plan all along and I’m so thankful that as we prayed and prayed and prayed. He is showing us the little steps to take along the way as we trust in Him and we’re super excited for this new adventure.
Soul & Spirit
1. Being part of a worship team/playing piano is good for my soul.
This past year I joined a worship team (after having taken about a 3 year break from being a part of one). It was exciting to use my piano skills again and playing at our services brought me a lot of joy and connection with the Lord. Worship music has always been a huge way I connect with Him but I think I kind of forget that sometimes. Worship connects my heart to His in a way that nothing else does and I’m grateful for that.
2. Scripture on my walls reminds me that my heart was not made for worry or fear, but freedom and rest.
One way I combatted my tendency towards worry or fear this past year was by putting little post-its of truth and scripture on my windows or walls. I actually haven’t done this for several months, so I want to start again. Just having that focal point throughout the day really helped refocus me if I started getting caught up in negative thinking. Words of truth are powerful and I need to be reminded of them more than just when my bible is opened.
3. Face to face friendship is key to refreshing my spirit and reenergizing me.
When we lived in B.C., I had a lot more friends than I have here so far. That’s because I lived there from when I was 8-19, so obviously. But, this year, I’ve really made an effort to cultivate meaningful friendships. It isn’t always easy to prioritize and continually reach out, but when I do, I’m reminded that relationship is what we were created for.
I hope you all have lovely New Year’s Eve/Day Celebrations. Tonight, my husband and I are staying in, wearing our pjs, eating goodies and heading to bed early. (And super excited about this by the way!) Oh yes, the third trimester has arrived 😉 But, however you are planning to ring in the New Year, I want you to know this…
any failings or disappointments or heartache from 2015 is not missed on Jesus… He has seen it all and He will carry you into this New Year. He brings hope, healing and NEWNESS to our lives. I give him praise for ALL He has done in 2015…carrying us through both the hard and the happy… never leaving us even when we were distant from Him… He wants GOOD for us friends. He wants us to experience not just a good life, but life ABUNDANT in Him. Let’s trust Him with 2016 and look forward to all he wants to teach us. Life with him is a wild ride and I love it! Love to you, friends. xoxo