Thrown into the Rabbit Hole…

The gallery for --> Alice In Wonderland Disney Falling Down The Rabbit Hole:

Down, down, down.

I cannot even believe how long it has been since I have sat here and typed, and how easy it is to stray away from the things we love the most for the sake of busyness.

The world is odd in that way. The busier our lives seem to get, the more stressed we feel, the more unhealthy we get, and then one day we wake up feeling like we have been thrown down the rabbit hole without a guide.

Strange comparison, I know, however, that’s exactly how I felt. Last September, My son and I started homeschooling again. Come November, I was offered a plea to go back to teaching full time because the school had lost their third grade teacher. If you know me, you would know its very hard to say no (although I am working on this) and I pondered and pondered over this decision for weeks until we finally just said, “YES”. In January, I had to bring 18 really wonderful students back up from where their previous teacher had led them astray academically and emotionally. Don’t get me wrong, I loved this challenge, but by June, I was faced with the same decision as the previous year. Should I stay? or Should I go? I didn’t know whether it was because I had been given the extra chance to try it out or just because my heart is in homeschooling despite the opinion of just near everyone I know. I bit the bullet and wrote my resignation letter, again.

It was not easy as I do not like disappointing people but in the end if I had taken on another year, I would have only been disappointing the children because my heart was not there and that’s not fair. One day, I know I will return to teaching in a school setting but for now, there are many adventures that await.

These adventures have already begun as I have the time to sit and write again, time for afternoon tea, a tradition that I truly love, and time for my health which is by far the most important.

We just came back from an amazing Disney trip and I have to say it was the best yet.

My little guy will be turning 8, yes you read that right, EIGHT years old in five days! Where has the time gone? He is bubbly and creative and imaginative and filled with laughter and jokes and apparently he and his uncle are a part of the “Jocker’s Club” which makes me smile for days thinking about the time they got to spend together. It was way overdue.

I feel like me again.

I feel like I am no longer falling down through the rabbit hole, but have now reached the point where I am about to open the door with hidden surprises behind it.

“No, no! The adventures first, explanations take such a dreadful time.”  ― Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass:

The adventures that lie behind the door are a mystery but I have never been more excited for what God has in store for our lives. It is never a dull moment and I love that I will have the time to explore these adventures to their fullest potential.

In a few weeks, we start THIRD GRADE together we couldn’t be more thrilled.

Renewed Passion

After a very long break from taking photos, I have renewed my passion for a long lasting hobby of mines. I had the opportunity to take some photos of a very good friend this past week. I love natural light photography sessions and this was no exception; The light was perfect for photos and thanks to my lovely assistant who manned the reflector, we got some awesome shots.

SONY DSC

Beautiful Alanna

Considering we were in Abaco, I felt like these images transported us to an Irish garden or something! They were so much fun to edit because they needed hardly no editing.

SONY DSC

And then after the garden scene, we headed over to find some beautiful waves for the background.

SONY DSC

And finally after we found some awesome spots, we went on a search for some outdoor flowers.

SONY DSC

Blessings,

Amy

Time to hit the books…

573aa64ec46cc71d99518463180fdf4a

The magic of new beginnings is a time when we say goodbye to something and say hello to a different something.

In June, I finished my very first year of teaching in a large setting out of the house. As much as my heart loved the children, the people and the experiences, my heart felt as if it were missing something important. There was a puzzle piece missing from my life and I knew when I decided to homeschool again, that homeschooling would be my missing piece. Over the past ten weeks of Summer, I have dedicated my life to getting healthier and growing closer to my family and to God.

I happily feel more like myself and feel more confident to start a new beginning. I have lost weight and gained a greater sense of self while walking the journey God intended for me. From the moment I had our son, I knew I wanted to be a major part of his life. I knew I wanted to spend time with him and frankly a few hours at the end of the day is just not enough. These years go by so quickly, and this time I get with him and time I get to be home with my family being the home-maker are far too precious to let slip away.

This journey that God has led me to may not be for everyone. But it is my journey and my family’s journey to walk alongside the Lord we serve and love.

741056a690467505ea8a9fc88fca90ca

This is one of my all time favorite reasons for homeschooling. God gave  us his commands that we should teach our children when we walk our journey each day, when we lie down and when we rise up. So I am rising up into this role that God has led my heart to have passion for and serve him throughout the ministry of being a devoted wife to my husband helping with my fair share of the house duties and being a caring and loving mommy to our son teaching him how to be a responsible and loving adult one day.

Tomorrow we get to start our adventure through Sonlights Core B&C as we head through the history of the world and soar through the pages of classic literature and take nature walks. The possibilities are endless because we can do whatever we set our mind to accomplish each day.

I cannot believe our son is starting Second Grade and God has blessed this family with what we need to enrich all of our lives and hearts as we grow closer and steer the boat of our life on the path straight to God.

Many blessings to each of you,

Amy

Golden Opportunities

I just cannot believe it has been over three months since I last sat and wrote here on my global journal. Ha! The past few months have been filled with many moments; some great, some not so great and some smack dab in the middle.

I have been on a prayer journey, trying to find a closeness with the Lord and cultivating it daily not only on an individual level but in our marriage as well. I have included my students in my prayer journey and we pray often in class now, out loud for the Lord to hear our voices.

This past month has been chocked full of new events. My new church family has embraced and welcomed me with open arms and I feel a peace about that move. I even have enjoyed the fabulous company of my husband at church, which is a welcomed surprise. I just know its due to focusing our marriage and our life on Christ even more so than ever before.

I attended my very first Easter sunrise service at 6:30a.m. on Easter morning to celebrate Christ rising from the grave and to remember the grace that he so graciously showed us. I recently read that we should always remember GRACE as:

GODS
RICHES
AT
CHRISTS
EXPENSE

I really loved that acronym for such a powerful message. Simple, yet effective.

I also attended my very first Ladies Conference and met one of the most amazing women ever. The speakers testimony touched my heart and her thoughts throughout the conference have dug deep into my soul.

d2d44670a75b2f6ba0f807b1e3da473a

This was our verse for the weekend. I even taught it to my nineteen first graders because I loved it so much. Every time I have started to say something, this verse pops into my head and I ask myself, Is this something I need to say? Maybe I should just listen. Maybe I should just wait right now.

The speakers husband has been preaching at the church throughout their time here as well. I have thoroughly enjoyed his sermons. But my favorite moment was when he spoke of golden opportunities. These moments in our lives that are intertwined with Gods plan and when they pass, sometimes they may never come again.

We recently made a decision to go back to homeschooling next year. I don’t doubt that I love teaching and love being able to touch the lives of children in the classroom setting. However, I have one little life whom God has blessed me with and the time spent with him is more precious than anything. It is making a sacrifice and knowing that this is my golden opportunity. I can always go back to teaching in a bigger setting in the future, but I will only have these years when my baby is young, once. They will not come around again. I have to reach out and grab this opportunity, this moment while I have the chance. Otherwise, just as the wind passes by, time will fly and this too will just be a fleeting memory.

When the speaker said this, it grabbed deep into my heart and tugged on the deepest part of my soul. I knew in that moment God was telling me, “Daughter, my child, You are taking your golden opportunity and I am proud of you.”

bf4db25344cf8f19556af51f97611d2e

These are the moments when my family will be cultivating roots for the day when we let him spread his wings and fly. Wyatt and I have had the best experience going out to school this year, and I having the blessing of teaching him in a school setting as well, but I could not be more thrilled to be coming back home this Fall, and diving into the literature that we have awaiting us. I even want to do a little home project to build a library into my spare bedroom because we have so many books and have such a love of books that I think it shall be our summer project.

I have loved every moment of getting to know my new friends, and I look forward to corresponding and keeping in touch with them and hearing about their lives and praying for these two awesome and amazing children of God. I find it so amazing when the Lord brings people into our lives at the exact opportune moment when we need them the most.

Praise be the Lord,

Blessings,

Amy

Restoring Health

Matthew 11:28 ~ Come to Me all who are weary & I will give you rest.

What a comforting message from God.

Its two weeks into the New Year and the Lord is definitely helping me with my get healthy journey. Working amongst little ones all day is very rewarding but sometimes can get tiring as our bodies grow weary.

I have to remind myself of this verse especially when all those germs start cheering because they think

they have knocked me down. This past weekend, I started feeling that tingle in my throat. I started getting more vitamin C, drinking lots of fluids, resting, but by Monday, I had absolutely no voice. There were no subs available and I didn’t want to put a strain on anyone at work so I went in yesterday only to come home late afternoon completely congested like a plugged up drain. However, did I give up ?????

No way, I did some light exercises and stretching which made me feel on top of the world… got a steamy warm shower and coated in vicks rub (that stuff seriously is amazing) and snuggled in my cozies and graded papers! Every few moments, I would say a prayer for the Lord to heal me and help me wake up not feeling as I did last night.

When my eyes opened this morning, they did so ever so slowly almost partly in fear that I would be dizzy or couldn’t speak and to my surprise, I feel OKAY! and hey I will take it! I got up slowly, and made me a hot cup of Green Tea filled with antioxidants and Honey and I feel OKAY! Praise the Lord.

Jeremiah 30:17 ...This also pertains to emotional healing !!!!!   CB

All the comfort in the world is found right in Gods amazing book. He has comfort and peace for us in all situations of our lives nestled between these pages if we only open it to find them. Sometimes I know the weather and the seasons give us germs and sometimes I feel like the DEvil wants to knock us when we are down but I will not let them win. I am taking control with Jesus at the wheel this year and I want to not only read his word but dive into it and study it!

Can I get an amen?

Now how is this for amazing?

Bible Verses for Hard Times | Christian Wallpapers: God's Pharmacy Natural Healing Remedies

God is the ultimate Physician!🙂 and His pharmacy does look wonderful!

Have a blessed Day!

Being Brave…

Because the World can Get Dark & We Really Need You ; 5 Ways to Keep Being Brave

Yesterday, I introduced the Word of the Week to my First Grade students. I want to focus on Character Traits because I have noticed their little minds have already begun being tested by this world and all the technology and things out there to bring children down. My goal is not only to teach them reading, writing, and arithmetic but to give them a taste of the world through history, understand how things work through science, find their inner imagination through books and to treat other people in this world with respect and dignity that each of us deserve.

Their first word for the year is:

Brave

A lot of them did not know what this word means … one child even said, “It’s a movie”.

Why Yes it may be a movie and I love the bravery that is shown in that Disney Flick but the bravery I am talking about is a little different than a movie.

It is the bravery that fills our souls with courage for another day.

Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying I will try again tomorrow.

Its the bravery to be yourself regardless who likes it or not.

Ah . . . NLD, ADHD, Asperger's, Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, . . . YES, It's Okay to be Different!

Because I am trying to show them that people are different all over the world and there will be people who are afraid of different and that means sometimes they may be insecure and try to bully you down to become just like them.

Stand tall and be who you are!

God didn’t put us on this world to be imitating soldiers of one another. He put us here to let our gifts shine and soar all towards him not for the glory of each other.

In order to have courage, I feel its vital to have peace within our hearts, minds and souls.

Peace Experience all that there is for you, and discover who you truly are, in the present moment. BWE will help you follow your dreams and transform them into reality. Precise frequency patterns are introduced, activating the brainwave you require for the experience you wish to explore. Visit Waverider @ http://www.waveridermp3.com  and begin a new story.  Be all that you were meant to be.

Here are some awesome Scripture verses to bring you peace if there is something you are battling …

When I sat down with my Bible, devotional book, and journal yesterday morning I was empty. If anyone wanted to escape from “life” at that moment, it was me. But as I began to dwell on God’s truths, everything began to change. I was reminded that Jesus never intended for me to carry my burdens alone.

So I hope today as you read these verses it brings you a calming peace that it brought to me…

.cool quote

I look forward to seeing my students this year blossom into their own little people, unique

with their differences.

Have a Blessed Day,

My Word Journalling- HEALTHY

It has been a long while since I have felt like my brain and my body were working on the same level towards the same goal. I was doing so well and then life got in the way so this year I want to try and journal throughout this entire year on my blog and in my fitness journal by hand to make sure I am taking care of my mind and pray to the Lord more often to let God take charge of this journey and not just myself.

My Word for this year: IMG_7529wee

I did one mile yesterday and two today!!! It felt OH SO GOOD to be nourishing my body and I remembered how much I just ADORE exercising… the rush and adrenaline … its a natural high.

heres to a great year accomplishing my goals….

A New Year

dd5da5b1948c2c47c9db4b4997262a21

Changes

New Chances

Life

A few weeks ago, I started feeling sick again and I vowed to myself that from that point on, I had had enough of feeling sick and tired and cruddy. I know a big part of how I had been feeling was due in part to my lack of exercise, poor nutrition over the past few months and just getting a cold. But regardless of the excuses, I was just tired, Tired of making excuses and tired of not being the best ME that I can be for myself, my husband and my family. So I started praying and boy does God deliver when we pay attention to Him.

I started fueling my body with healthy foods and although I couldn’t quite exercise yet, I started trying to be more active. The cold was making me feel cruddy when I overexerted and I really did not want to spend my entire break from teaching sick.

So I listened.

I listened to God and I listened to the things that were not said and I listened to my body.

And You know what I heard?

A Lot!

Sometimes I think the noise of life just gets in our heads and we start doubting ourselves and our abilities and we just need to stop and listen. Meditate with the Lord and in nature.

I started going back outside and just sitting.

Yep, that’s all. Just sitting in nature listening silently.

Then I started reading, and Oh how my soul loves a good book. I had not made time for reading in a long time and I didn’t want to dwell on the past but only that I had a few weeks out of school and I could really read some awesome books. I started on my Divergent Series and WOW have you seen that movie?

Free Divergent Quote Printable. Three colors available. #divergent #cultivatecreate (The book quote.....not the movie quote, which is in a different order.)

This is one of my fave moments in the movie and the book. He didn’t want to be defined by a faction, by one personality, he wanted to be a little of all of them. I want that too! I don’t want the world defining who I am or who I can be. I want to grow in the Lord and be who God has intended for me to be all along.

5f15821782ce440d7e31e60840fc325b

Ah such wisdom!

I think when you read more and worry less, the world becomes a magical place. Instead of dwelling on the negative things, it gives me the ability to see through my rose colored glasses down in the rabbit hole or through a wardrobe in Narnia. I can see passion that I forgot was there in my marriage, and it brings dreams to life in a way that explodes my imagination.

This year, I want every day to be a reminder of my dreams and how far I have come and where God wants me to go from here.

If I can make every day count and teach my students to cherish every day as well, then I will have accomplished my job.

I look forward to where Gods blueprint of my life is leading, but I wont spend another day worrying over it. Because worrying over my past or wondering too much about my future robs me of my today.

This is the year of my 28th birthday.

My tenth wedding anniversary.

My son turns seven.

and this is the year I will conquer my weight goals.

My word for 2015 is HEALTHY and through health I will achieve my goals.

#happy #healthy #quote

From Broken to Renewed

Sometimes we find ourselves in a situation where we are not sure where to go. You know you are supposed to talk about it and ask for help but in that moment, you shrug it aside and keep on moving forward. As the little things pile up on top of the big things, you start focusing on all those negative things and the positive things start to shine as bright. Before you know it, you start to feel that heavy feeling in your chest that you may or may not have ever felt before. That was me last week.

I felt broken and I felt lost. I felt as if the entire world was on my shoulders and I didn’t know where to head from there. I started crying at the drop of a hat in the presence of whoever was around me, and if you know me you know that is not me. I am usually categorized as the energizer bunny by some of my friends. Enter school and a new busy schedule and twenty students relying on me and wham bam, I was stressed out. Then the guilt and shame and doubt started floating in because I was feeling stressed.

Who said you cannot handle it all? Oh right, its an unspoken rule. I forgot it.

For as long as I can remember, teaching has been all I wanted. I finished my entire Bachelors degree course in a little over a year. Nothing however can prepare you for what you learn in that classroom when twenty little pairs of eyes are focused in on you (or sometimes not focused on you haha).

c85dac670af71f8c58eff72fb48a475e

For weeks from I got my job offer, I had been on full speed ahead and any stopping would show signs of weakness on my part. From the first week of school, my son and I were both sick. The new germ land had overtaken our bodies and from upset tummies to sore throats to coughs and the dreaded sniffles, these germs had a new plan of their own. I brought home work just about every afternoon, and thought that obviously everyone must have to do this because my twenty first graders never give me one moments peace to grade in the day so how on earth do other teachers do this? I started to doubt myself. And when that mean and nasty Mr. Doubt starts to set inside our minds, its very difficult to send them packing.

So between Mr. Doubt and King Germ and his millions of minions that were overtaking my body, I was starting to tear down. However, I kept on going. The work continued to pile on and every time I thought I had a nights break, I ended up with something I just HAD to do because you know the plan and curriculum needed it. Never mind all the paper that has to be copied and oh sleep. Who has time for that? EXERCISE? Food? Who has time to make these things happen and to happen with the utmost clean eating in mind? Pshhh… the last few weeks, I was lucky if any food went past these lips of mines and when it did, I can guarantee you it was not labeled “clean eating”.

4eb190bc61ca88a8df01ac5be51b11a1

Then I had the joyous moments of parent conferences and dealing with upset and frustrated parents over issues about their kids. I really started doubting myself now, and I prayed and prayed to the Lord but I think I was still trying to handle things on my own. I was praying but now handing it over. I was praying for change but not changing anything.

Nobody ever tells you about the balance between work and home. Maybe its one of those other unspoken rules … that people just don’t bother to tell you. Balance, what an intriguing concept.

The Bible tells us in:

Isaiah 40:29

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
But in order to receive the strength and power from God, I have to be open to it. I have to get to the point where I am empty to be filled with the love of Christ.
Its sad to me that when things are going right, we don’t spend as much time with the Lord, however, when things start going wrong and our bodies feel weak and sick or germ-stricken we start to call upon Him. He is always waiting and there for us.

Mark 12:30

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’

God promises to renew us with his strength. He promises to be our shield and our protector.

I am beginning to learn that I don’t always need to have things together. That trying to be in control means that I am not letting Jesus be in control. Its great to be confidant but I need to learn to find confidence in Jesus plan for my life.

9ac35274f5b08749f208ffdf6fc0f110

This past week when I literally felt like I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown for the first time in my life was one of the hardest and most renewing things I have ever been through. I had to reach the bottom of my vulnerability to find the strength deep down that God has bestowed upon my soul.

I will not let people break me. I will not allow people to change my personality. I like who I am and I like who God wants me to be. However, I need to learn to thicken my skin to the negativity that can sometimes surround ourselves a lot in our lives. I need to take it easy and take some time for myself, my family, my friends, and leave work at work. I need to work harder on finding the balance and setting schedules for myself and my time.

93f640d834bd06c454df4144285012ab

But the one thing I will not do, is allow the negativity and germs and hostile people and things that I cannot change make me want to give up. I have never been a quitter. I do follow the beat of my own drum sometimes and I follow my heart more often than not, but I do not give up. I need to learn to ask for help and delegate tasks to other people and sometimes as much as I don’t want to, say no sometimes.

I have to learn that its not being unkind to say, “I’m sorry, I just cannot make it to that.”

With Gods help, I know this year will be full of learning experiences, some highs and some lows, but I know that when those little children smile at me and tell me they love me, nothing else matters in this world but those moments.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.