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Homeward Bound!

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Our things are packed and we are moving back to Grand Rapids Michigan. I actually cannot believe I am typing this as it seems so very sudden and abrupt…
You are reading correct, we are homeward bound. I say homeward because 1 month ago we made the decision to move back to Grand Rapids Michigan. It was a very very difficult decision. I was not sure how to word it for my social media so I decided not to say anything about the matter. I wasn’t sure how to share that we were heading back when it seemed like yesterday that we moved to Austin Texas. We were so excited, and it was absolutely an adventure, but an adventure that opened our eyes to manny things!

When we decided to move to Austin Texas we made the decision on a whim. It was the dead of Winter, we were working from home and we were quick to decide to give living south a try! We had ambitions of buying a home in Grand Rapids previously but we figured we would give another City a shot just to be 100% sure where we belonged! We looked into various cities and Austin seemed to be just like Grand Rapids sans Winter! Because we work for ourselves we had the luxury of making the abrupt and quick decision to just pick up and go.

When we made it to Austin it was so exciting and new! We had a blast! We made an effort to explore the city and just get out and about. After just a couple of weeks of being in town we had to jet for a a business trip. 4 more lengthy trips followed that trip and I never seemed to be able to really plug into Austin. My Beachbody business is a major passion of mine and I was not willing to for go the trips because I wanted to get plugged into a new city. I completely forgot how difficult it actually is to plug into a new city and make new friends and support. Especially if you work from home! As we started to realize that this plugging into a new city thing was getting to be a challenge. We began to realize that Austin was truly Grand Rapids sans the winter and … sans Family. We began to really miss our Family, and support. We started to think to ourselves “this is silly, we are in the same type of city, just more traffic, more options for the same stuff, and none of our friends or Family. The simple luxury of stopping over on the weekends for dinner and bonding time with your family was not available to us anymore and we did not realize how much we valued that.

We decided to stick it out though! We decided that we would give Austin a full year! So we kept trying to get plugged in, but after each of my trips I was simply to worn out to get out there and get to know new people. I would go on these Beachbody trips and my introverted self would come home totally wiped out socially! Between Beachbody trips we were planning trips back to Grand Rapids to visit friends and Family because we missed them so much. And the trips were not stopping there. We have 4 more trips planned for this Fall and we would have been going back to Michigan for Thanksgiving, and Christmas!!! So between September – January we would have been gone for the majority of the time anyway!  I just felt as if I had no home base, and that I was floating in outter space somewhere. I felt very little grounding. I would travel for 1 week out of each month and then come home to a completely un familiar town and not really know anyone, I would try to get acclimated and then we would have to leave again! It seemed silly and not practical.

Finally the two straws that broke the camels back: My Mom decided it was time for her to move on and she decided to move in with a friend in Connecticut. Please know that I fully support my Mother’s decision. She really just wanted to start a new life, and be independent. I totally understand her reasons. My Mom was really our main support here in Austin. We did make a couple of aaaamazing friends here, but my Mom was our only Family here and she was going. We soon realized that this is not the environment that we want to raise our daughter in. We valued raising our daughter around her family way more than we thought. Being that I am an only child I knew how important that was and how much I valued a bigger family. The second straw and equally as important: someone we love very much. Someone who is very very important to us was told that she had stage 2 breast cancer. That opened our eyes and made us realize that Family is the most important part of life… not a cool city and decent (well 105 degrees really did suck! ) weather.

So why so sudden you ask? We are just so ready to get Scarlett plugged into School, we are ready to get plugged into church, and we are ready to get back life in Michigan. We wanted to get our family plugged into somewhere that was consistent and we knew that we would stick around for longer than 6 months. If I was going to start Scarlett in pre school I wanted her to stay in the same school for longer than 6 months.  Our hearts were just not in Austin anymore  and we were eager to just move on. We truly do love Michigan and for now … it is home. Who knows where life will lead us in the future but we were grateful that we were able to have this experience. We were able to pick up and just try out a different city and a change of pace for a while. This is something many people will never have the luxary of doing and because of my Beachbody business we were able to do it. Sure we hate the winters, but everything else about Grand Rapids was fantastic and most importantly it included our Family. We an always travel south for the Winters to vacation if the Winters get to be to much again! It took 6 months in Austin for us to realize what we had in Grand Rapids and how special that was to us.

 

So the bags are packed and we are en-route as I type this. It is bitter sweet driving away from this incredibly cool town, but we have an incredibly cool town we are headed back to with some incredibly cool people that cannot be replaced…

Fall is Coming!! Clean Apple Crisps!!

Anyone else excited for FALL EVERYTHING!? I have been having dreams of pumpkin spice, leaves changing, crisp cool air, apple orchards and chai tea heart emoticon. In celebration of the up coming season (seriously Eric thinks I am obsessed with Fall!) I am back in the kitchen baking up some fall goodies! Our traveling has settled down a bit for the year and I am glad I can get back to one of my biggest passions… the kitchen! (bet you didn’t know I loved to bake!?)

Enjoy this healthy option.

Healthy Apple Crisp

Ingredients:
2 organic apples, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup gluten free oat flour
1/2 cup gluten free rolled oats
2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
2 Tbsp honey
1/4-1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
pinch of sea salt

 

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Melt coconut oil in microwave. Mix with honey.
3. Mix together apples, 1 Tbsp of oil/honey mixture, and 2 Tbsp of oat flour.
4. Place covered apples in the bottom of the pan.
5. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and spread on top of the apples.
6. Bake for 30-40 minutes.
Let me know what you think! Clearly my family ate it all

before I could get a photo of it!11039800_10207398510622436_4211053096321608077_n

The Shift: Faith First.

Matthew 7:24-27New Living Translation (NLT)

Building on a Solid Foundation

24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”

matthew

So I am not sure how many people even read my blog? I started this thing for my Fitness journey, and quit frankly I have run out of things to say about my own personal fitness journey! I love helping people get fit, but really… there is only so much I am passionately going to write about! So I am just going to journal over here about my  journey through healthy, fitness, my walk with God, my spiritual growth, and what I am learning along the way about being a Woman of God. Giving my life to Christ in 2009 was super easy! Seriously, it just seemed like the answer. I cried, I fell to my knees and I finally said “Okay Ill do it your way, or at least Ill give it a shot!” Boy was I ever hopping around with the new spirit in my soul! I was excited, I felt strong. Nothing could bring me down! I was a born again Christian. I finally made the decision that lingered in my head for 15 years! Now what? So I went to church weekly for years, and I studied the bible conveniently… but not as much as I would have liked. I still kept some of my old habits that were not exactly Bible approved! I did God and Faith on my terms when it served me! I realized right away that it was not going to be this over night transformation but rather a slow and steady one and I was okay with that.

I began to slow and steady do more and more God like things. I began to follow the 10 Commandments (not perfect but the best I could), I started to act with Love first rather than jealousy, or without trust. I never actually studied the people of the bible, or the deep messages about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, I just stayed focused on Love, and the 10 Commandments. My life started to change incredibly. I was soon  married, new baby, and a new thriving Fitness Multi Level Marketing Business! No joke we were on top of the universe! I started to see huge pay checks, and my family started to really thrive. My Husband left his job and we began to work this business together. There were a few bumps along the way, but we were smoothing them out better than ever! No where along this journey did I really dig deep into scripture. No where on this journey did I learn about pain, suffering, depression, anxiety. I never read what the Bible said about any of that. I had some serious bouts of anxiety and depression in my early 20’s and took Zoloft (antidepressant) for 3 years. I removed myself from Zoloft in 2012 and have been without an episode of severe anxiety and depression for a total of 5 years now.

One month ago I was getting a massage and my massage therapist and I got to talking. We were going back and forth about life and the pain and suffering she was going through. She began to dump so much negativity and sadness on me, and I kept telling her it would be okay. She must have looked at me as someone who would listen to her. She eventually shared with a story about a friend of hers who was 32, beautiful, a model, smart, who fell ill to Schizophrenia. I heard this and felt sorry for her friend, but immediately following our conversation I started to put the pieces together. My Father was 31 when he became ill with Schizophrenia. I am 29. My heart began to race, I felt immense sadness and fear. It became crippling and I realized in that moment I had no faith. The faith I had built up over the last 5 years… right out the dang window. The faith I had built was based on the treasures that God had given to me through my walk with him… NOT based on living life for him on his terms not my own. I didn’t realize it in the moment of pain and fear. I realized it during a church sermons a few weeks after. I was a Christian who lived life for personal happiness and loved God because of what he gave to me. But what would have happened if God took those things away from me? Well right there after the conversation with that Massage Therapist, I soon realized what my reaction would be if God took everything away from me. I started to have visions of what life would be life if God took away my family, my friends, my business. I started to feel immense fear and panic and that threw me into immense depression. It was clear… I was not full of Faith like I thought, because the moment my perfect life looked as though it could be taken away from me, I ran away from God and acted in fear and anxiety, not in Faith that God would catch me if I fell!

I shut down, and felt scared. I began to research my fathers illness and that turned into a anxiety night mare because I was not liking what I was reading on Dr. Google! There was no peace to be found on these websites and my fear and panic got worse. I went to see a therapist and she told me that I needed to figure this out and find peace. I needed to find the strength to heal from this, and that I needed to find the answers, but the only way to do so was acting in Faith, strength and peace as you find your answers, otherwise you would be paralyzed in fear and panic all the time. She was right… I needed to find my strength. I needed find wisdom and peace. I wasn’t going to just find that out of thin air. I had to dig deeper into my Faith, that was the only answer I could find! The other answer would have been to fall apart in fear, and that would not be fair to my family or my business, and that thought is just down right scary! I’ve been there, I’ve done that in my early 20’s! So I began to study my Bible and read Faith based growth books. I finally started to learn about living for God’s plan, God’s way. Everything I had on this earth was not mine, it was his. I am learning that I need to grasp onto what gifts I have been given rather than sitting in fear and anguish. I have so many blessings in my life, and my life has taken a 180, but I never stopped to acknowledge the fact that this was not my stuff, not my glorified journey, not something I could do just on my own. Sure I had the talents, the intelligence, the wisdom, and the motivation, but God gave me those gifts, and the circumstances necessary to workout his plan for my life, but everything that we have… is his and it can be stripped away in a moments notice. It can be ripped away from my life without a blink of an eye. I walked through life believing that this was my life, this was my stuff, this was my doing and it would be un fair if God took it away. I had no idea I subconsciously thought this way! I thought I had believed that it was all his, but once I started to feel like it could all really truly be taken away… I noticed that I did not have my faith rooted by the rock, but by the sand.

I had built my Faith on my terms. I had built my Faith on what could God give me in the moment, on what the benefits were. I did give him the glory online, because I was so filled up , and excited for all that he could give me… but what about if he took it all away because that was his will… would I still be in love with him and shout out his name?! The answer was a very scary and sad NO. The fear, panic, pain and depression was a serious sign that God was not the center of my world like I thought he was. He was a matter of convenience for me, and God had other plans. I feel that God knew that about me, and knew I had this big giant voice on social media. He knew that I had people watching me, and listening to me on his word and I was not truly working on my faith. So God showed me what life would be like without all of my blessings in visions of me becoming sick. These were not just visions, these were true feelings as if I was told that I was sick. The possibility is there. I could very well become sick and that is why the visions and the emotions were so strong. The possibility is low, but its there, and there is not denying it or hushing it out of my life. It is a very real thing and the only way I can live with it is coming even closer to God. It is amazing how he works in our lives. He wanted to show me that I am his servant and this is his life he is in control of. He wanted to show me that I had way more work to do on myself before I could lead other’s about his word through my Social Media Platforms. I believe he saw what I was saying and preaching on my social media as immature in his word and possibly irresponsible because I was sharing about my own understanding and not what the Bible says.

 

I am working through this process right now, and it is very scary, very painful, and downright frightening. I have never had to deal with something this scary. Let me pre-face this with I show no symptoms of my Father’s illness, but the possibility will never go away. What I have learned so far: My life and the blessings I have are his, I need to understand that it can be taken away in an instant, that I need to balance my time between my Family and my career a lot better, I need to change where my heart is. I need to balance my heart better between my faith, my family, my business. I will be honest before I had that run in with that Massage Therapist the balance looked like this My Business, My Family, My Faith. As much as I wanted to believe it was the other way around it wasn’t. I was thought that because my business affected my Family so much that it was okay to make it such a huge priority, but my heart was starting to really go in the wrong direction. I was finding my worth in my business success. I was starting to work 10 hours a day out of no where. I was traveling way to much and missing my Daughter. I felt tremendous Mom guilt which caused me to feel really anxious. My life was turning into something I did not recognize or want. I started to resent my business. And out of no where I started to resent my faith. My life was not built on a strong foundation of faith, therefore when things were being threatened in my life I felt scared and without peace. I was not feeling strong. I did not fully believe that my Busniness and the success of it was not my own but God’s. I did not fully believe that my Family was not my own but God’s. Everything I had was a gift. I was not believing that when I die, I will not be taking any of those things with me.

I believe that Faith needs to come first. Faith needs to come first in order to be the strong foundation that your Family, and Business (or job) is built on. Without Faith being first you chance having serious anxiety every day, fear of the unknown and if you let it get to far… depression. Take it from my own experience… you must build a strong foundation before you can go big in God’s way on anything else.

I feel the shift in my body turning to Faith, Family, Business… but this shift is an absolute painful one, but I don’t think I would have made the shift had it not been painful. I don’t think I would have made the shift to Faith first if there wasn’t something being taken away from me. So here I am on this journey of putting Faith first. I do not have all of the answers and I may never, but I would like to use this page as my place to journal. To write out what I am going through. To hopefully help someone else through my journey as well!

 

James 4:7;

Throw Back Thursday! My Favorite Transformation!

 

This is by far my favorite transformation in my life! Happy #throwbackthursday! The first two photos you see in this collage are from back in my Djing days! Yes that is a cocktail and a cigarette in my hand! I was a party girl! So much so I made a career out of it! Even back then I was an entrepreneur and highly driven! I figured, if I was going to be out partying every night, I should absolutely make an income doing so!

The big difference is I was not adding positive value to anyones life, including my own. I was very lost and collecting treasures for my life but not collecting treasures for heaven! I didn’t realize when I got into that industry that it was totally un healthy! Everything about it looked shiny and glorified from the outside. It isn’t so much that way when you are in it! I was drinking heavily 3-5 nights per week (and getting in my car and driving home!), I was out all hours of the night, and it did not stop there. I also had no idea what I truly wanted for my life. I thought I had it all figured out, but I was super lost!

My life started to change in 2009 when I gave my life to God. The changes were small, and bit by bit, but over time the changes were immense! They were huge! They were God sized! I was married to an incredibly loving Man, I had a healthy beautiful baby girl, and I became a Beachbody Coach and found a career of purpose! I decided to lead my life with the word of God and follow the principles of the Bible the best way that I could at the time. Over time I became better and stronger in my walk with God. It isn’t perfect and there are still days I wrestle with self doubt but I am always searching for those reminders of where I came from and where I am today.

How has your life changed for the better in the last 5 years?! What do those changes look like and what are you thankful for?before and after

Beer Can Chicken!

Eric and I about shed a tear for how good this chicken was last night! Although the photo is not cute, I had to share this recipe we tried last night!!

Okay first things first… put a pan under your chicken and beer can!! (ROOKIE MISTAKE) Luckily there were no grease fires!!

This chicken was moist, succulent, tasty and so so easy to prepare!

Enjoy everyone!! I love trying new things out and sharing them with you guys!! One of my favorite parts of my JOB!

 

 

beer can chicken

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