I AM Good Enough

This time last week I was in a vulnerable place. Some words had been spoken that cut me to the core, and as I worked through my hurt and emotions the following thoughts are what came to mind…

 

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I don’t know where or when it started. But I know that now it needs to stop. This idea that’s been  plaguing me for years, and as a result is hindering my growth and personal belief of who God says I am. It is what the enemy would love to keep present in my mind. It is the thought and idea that I’m not good enough.

For as long as I can remember I struggled with perfectionism. As a child I would be so hard on myself if I made a mistake. On the softball field I would cry after striking out. In the classroom I would refuse to turn in less than ‘perfect’ work, and even my rough drafts would be covered in white out because I couldn’t stand the sight of seeing those mistakes.

In college it was the rumors that were spread with the intent of tearing me down. It was the voices in my head and outside my head telling me that my God-given talents were never enough, or that my body wasn’t worth more than serving as pleasure for man.

In marriage I question being a good enough wife to my husband. Am I serving him well? Am I always this selfish? Am I putting his needs before mine? Am I taking criticism with humility and grace, or am I just quick to list my complaints. Am I loving him unconditionally or with unspoken and unrealistic conditions and expectations?

As a mom am I being the example my girls need me to be? Am I walking as God wants me to walk and showing them what He wants me to show them? Am I patient enough? Am I forgiving and tender enough? Am I showing that love with my actions and words?

As a woman am I measuring up? It’s so easy for me to compare myself to others. I’m certainly not up on the latest trends and with the second baby I gained weight and a belly that seem to be going nowhere fast. What about my hair? I don’t even know what I’m doing most of the time. And I believe I have a cute face. But is it pretty? Am I pretty?

I have definitely been guilty of being too consumed with what other people think and allowed insecurity to get the best of me.

Today I cried big wet heavy tears. I sobbed as the saltiness hit my lips. I reached for the tissues and after wiping my face I glanced at myself in the mirror. I was suddenly filled with righteous anger and indignation because I’d had enough. 

Enough is enough!

Sometimes people say things and they mean well, but it hurts to the core and you feel more insecure than ever. Other times it’s you who says these things to yourself and the self-deprecating thoughts get you absolutely nowhere. I know that these are lies, and most importantly I know that God wants better for me.

He has a calling for my life, and the more time I waste stewing in self pity, the less effort I’m putting forth proclaiming His glorious name! I’m not an unhappy person by any means, but I am a human and sometimes there’s pain and heartache behind that smile.  Sometimes I see the lies for what they are, and other times I have to work very hard to fight against them.

Today is the day I silence the enemy once and for all and reclaim what I know to be true. Today is the day I fight back with the power of His Word, and stand firm in this one truth:

To Him I am marvelous, and I am, without a doubt, absolutely, positively good enough.

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:13-18‬ ‭NLT‬‬

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EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

💜Patricia

Artwork: Ruth Chou Simons of Gracelaced. Name card was a gift from my dear friend Caroline at In Due Time. Bold and Brave raglan available at A Beautiful Rawr.

A Visit to The King Center…Free at Last…

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A couple months ago I visited The King Center with my dear friend and mentor.  She was in town and this was a must see on her list. I am so glad it was, and I’m even more thankful that I am near enough to visit again.

This experience is one that I will never forget, and while it was deeply impactful it’s also hard to find the words to describe it.  To know that I was able to sit in the pews where the King family fellowshiped, celebrated, and grieved…to take a stroll down Freedom Walkway and see history in iconic pictures all along the walls…to view powerful art and expression and learn more about the peace makers of our time….and to stand before the crypt where Dr. and Mrs. King are laid to rest…I mean, wow.

There’s so much to say about the freedoms that I’m grateful for, and those who literally gave their lives so I can live mine with my head held high. In many ways we as a nation still have so far to go, but there’s no denying that the change starts with us, and our voices are not too small to be heard.

I encourage you to not only take a look at this selection of photos (there were many more I could’ve shared), but take some time out of your day off to really think about why we celebrate Dr. King and his legacy.

If you’re in or near the Atlanta Metro area I implore you to visit The King Center. Bring a friend, bring your family, bring a stranger. Just bring an open mind, perhaps some Kleenex and a humble heart, and you certainly won’t regret it. 

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Many blessings to you all.

EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

 💜PATRICIA

Small Shop Spotlight: Classy Little Love

Hey friends!!!

I’m beyond excited to kick off 2016 with a new Small Shop Spotlight! Today I’m featuring Classy Little Love which specializes in headwraps, bow ties and bows, for moms and their littles! The girls and I are huge fans, and I thought it would be great for us to get to know the fabulous shop owner, Leah, a bit better. Here’s our Q&A!:😀

1. Tell me a little bit about yourself (family, interests, hobbies, etc).

Family + Friends + Faith seem like such a cliche to say, but it’s the truth in my heart! I’m from Nebraska, living the military life (Go Navy!). Married to my wonderful husband for 5 years in January. We’re both native Nebraskans (Go Big Red!) and blessed with an independent and joyful baby girl who will turn 1 in February. Loving the military life and all that it has blessed us with. Our marriage is stronger than ever and we have this lifestyle to thank for that. We have made lifelong friends who live all over the states (and world) and as the military life goes, we hope to one day cross paths with them again through this journey. It isn’t a lifestyle for many and there isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t miss our family and friends back home.

Photo courtesy of Leah Parizek

Photo courtesy of Leah Parizek

As a FTM, my hobbies include dreaming about a nap. Just kidding…well, not really. :) Obviously, I enjoy sewing. I wouldn’t have opened up my small shop if I didn’t enjoy it. I also love running (this have become a favorite past time after becoming a new mom), but I look forward to getting back into it and hopefully doing another half marathon at some point in the near future. Spending time with my family and friends is always a joy. Especially when we get quality time with them while visiting home, or when they come to visit us. I love traveling (although a bit more complicated with a little one now). I love to cook and bake and sharing the end results with others. I enjoy watching the same romantic comedies over and over to the point that my husband can’t understand how I could possibly want to watch The Wedding Planner for the 100th plus time, but I do. I love relaxing mornings with my morning coffee and I cherish any seconds (even the middle of the night ones) that involve snuggling with my little one. She is not a snuggle lover at all so, any chance I get to have a few seconds of cuddle time with her sitting still….that is perfection in my eyes.❤️

2. When did you open your shop and why?

I opened Classy Little Love in September of 2015. I am a certified elementary teacher, but living the military lifestyle makes this a challenging career to have. I know that plenty of military spouses do it and I give them HUGE props for their commitment and hard work in transitioning and adapting their profession to each duty station that they land at. For me, the thought of basically starting over as a new teacher every time we moved was too much. We already face so much change with each relocation and the stress of it was not worthwhile. I opted for substitute teaching up until when we welcomed our little girl into our lives. After adjusting to being a new mom, I knew I needed to do something for myself. It’s my personality and my preference to have something in addition to being a SAHM, so my husband encouraged me to find my own interest. I absolutely love being a mom, but I knew I needed my own “job”. After purchasing my first sewing machine and getting some practice, I started toying around with the idea of opening a small shop with accessories for little ones. Growing up, my mom was (and still is!) always sewing adorable clothes, blankets, sheets, drapes, you name it. Channeling her inspiration mixed with my husbands support, I committed to the small shop idea. I am so glad I did as it has been such a wonderful way for me to have creative output, my own “job” of sorts, and connect with others in the real world.

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3. How did you come up with the name Classy Little Love? Does it have special meaning or significance?

I can’t remember exactly. I knew I wanted something “Classy”. The style vibe that I give off tends to be more classic and I just love timeless classy pieces. My husband has been so active in helping me get my small shop going. You know that adorable packaging that arrives at your doorstep from my small shop? Well, thank my dear husband for his classic packaging suggestion. :)

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4. What’s your favorite part about being a small shop owner?

I love the creative freedom I get and that the result of such creativity means little ones get some cute swag! I am so grateful that I am able to do what I do during nap times and after baby’s bedtime. I’m still a SAHM, but with the added benefit of a hobby I enjoy that also provides some extra income for my family. I also LOVE the people I have met through this journey thus far. The other small shop owners, my brand reps and enthusiasts, and my supporters! I have had so much fun making the connections and friendships that I have and I can’t wait to make more as my small shop continues to grow.

5. Do you have a favorite item (don’t worry, we won’t tell the others 😄)?

Lovies. These little lovies are pretty much the most adorable accessory for little ones. They are so teeny tiny (thank goodness I have tiny hands for crafting them), but so perfectly petite for little loves. I especially love them in clip form as my little one has a head of hair and they are handy for keeping hair out of her eyes. She always gets a compliment on these little hair bows when we’re out and about. They are also adorable for older girls as a fun hair accessory to clip back small sections of hair. I think I have kept one in every pattern I have in the shop…whoops, sorry!

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6. What can we expect from Classy Little Love in 2016?

I’d love to expand to more than just hair accessories and bow ties, but we’ll have to see. I do have a few ideas in mind. I love custom orders as they help me to branch out from the norm of what I would typically choose.

Classy Little Love will be relocating this summer so, a temporary closing will happen during the move, but that’s a ways off. :) For now, I’ll be pumping out the same timeless accessories for your Classy Little Loves and as always, I welcome and encourage custom requests!

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Wasn’t that great?!!  Click here to get started on some shopping, and be sure to follow @classylittlelove on Instagram for the latest deals and updates. You can also visit me on IG for your chance to be featured and for more giveaway opportunities!

Thanks so much for reading, and as always,

EMBRACE HIS GRACE!

💜PATRICIA

 

 

*All opinions are 100% honest and my own. I was not paid for this endorsement.*

I Confess… I Feel Better When I Hear You Fuss

“STOP. Didn’t I tell you to stop? Do you want to go back inside?”

Get off the grass. You know there’s dog poop on there. Get OFF the grass!!

Leave your sister alone. PLEASE. Don’t touch her.

“You’re just not listening. That’s it, we’re done out here. We are DONE.”

*** insert crocodile tears***

“Oh, you wanna cry about it? Well if you want to stay outside I need you to listen. Get down off those steps and listen. NOW!”

Ahhh the sounds of motherhood. 😄

As I sat in my recliner I couldn’t help but chuckle (and empathize) with this mama I heard through my window. Sometimes I feel like all I do is fuss at my children, and it can be exhausting and irritating. I ask myself if it’s just me not doing a good job of picking and choosing my battles, or if my toddler is a Jedi master of hard-headed behavior.😉 Little does this mom know how much she helped ease my mind, because I often need the reminder that I’m not the only one.

I’m not the only one feeling like I’m in the throes of a constant battle of wills with these little people who call me mama, all the while thinking there must be a better way. I’m also not the only one whose  child has an automatic hearing deficiency when I open my mouth to give instructions, testing my patience at every step.😩 And as often as I tell my threenager to stop whining and use her normal voice, I have to ask myself if I have a ‘normal’ voice left. 

Grumbling aside, it sounded like the woman I heard enjoyed the time she spent with her brood. Lately I’ve had a lot of days that feel like we fuss, fight, lose patience and press repeat, but when I take a step back and choose to focus on the good, I see we’ve had even more days of laughter, giggles and a whole lot of joy. 

So thank you mamas for letting me hear you fuss at your kids, and thank you, even more, for letting me here you love on them too. ❤️

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EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

💜PATRICIA 

 

 

Gray polka dot bow on Alex: Classy Little Love

You Are My Sunshine tee: Trendy Cactus

 

Vacation Rewind Part 3: Disney’s Hollywood Studios

After conquering the Magic Kingdom and Gatorland, we rounded out our trip with a visit to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

We were snowed on at the end of the Frozen Sing-A-Long, invited to be guests at the Beast’s castle and were temporarily part of Ariel’s world. I shrieked with both fear and delight on the Tower of Terror and quite possibly shed a happy tear when Doc McStuffins gave Alex a kiss, and my little sweetie hugged her so tight I thought she’d never let go. ❤️

This was certainly a trip to remember and I look forward to future adventures and making more incredible memories with this family of mine. 

Thanks for joining along, and remember,

EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

💜PATRICIA 

 

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Rebel Against Nap Time shirt available at GrayandMae.

Polka dot chambray teething necklace available at Wee Kings.

Shaggy Minnie Mouse headband available at Ibetteraccessorize .

Vacation Rewind Part 2: Gatorland!

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On the second day of our trip we stepped away from Disney and had the experience of a lifetime at Gatorland! I imagine this is what heaven looks to my dear husband who feels a kindred connection to the cast of Swamp People. 😂

Less crowded and slower paced (which is basically everywhere compared to Disney 😉), this was a great place to catch our breath while still taking in the excitement of gator wrestling, feeding time, and a giant tortoise. Here are some highlights from this fabulous day!

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EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

💜PATRICIA

 

 

Lily’s ‘shabby Minnie’ headband available at www.ibetteraccessorize.com.

Vacation Rewind Part 1: The Magic Kingdom

A few weeks ago my family and I enjoyed a wonderful vacation in Orlando, Florida. Our first stop was Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and we had a fantastic time!! Alex was thrilled, Lily was in awe, Kevin was father of the year, and I may have been the most excited one of all. 😄

I’m grateful for friends who shared their advice from recent trips to the land of the mouse (hotel recommendations, fast pass, and pack snacks; LOTS of snacks), and for this time with my family that was truly a dream come true! Here are a few photos from our first day of fun. Enjoy!

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EMBRACE HIS GRACE,

💜PATRICIA 

 

These personalized shirts can by found at Trendy Cactus. Alex’s mustard polka dot headwrap is from RyleeDee’s Boutique.