Thursday, July 31, 2014

No Guilt Should Ever Come From Being Happy.

dress- Asos (on sale!) Sandals- Piperlime (similar here and here) Purse- ℅ Olivia and Joy
Bracelets- The Shine Project

makeup by Harley Chapman

I just got off the phone with my mom, and our conversation sounded a little bit like this:

"Mom, I feel like I'm coming out of one of the hardest summers ever, and right now things just feel so good… Almost too good… In fact, the best they've been for quite a while…"

"Okay, so what the problem?"

"Well that's exactly the problem. Things are so good right now that I'm having anxiety that this won't last long and I'm only getting relief before something incredibly awful happens."

In her one of a kind, mom-like way she basically said:

"Get over yourself. Good things happen and it's not fair to discredit them or God for giving them to you. It's also not fair to think ahead and plan for the worst. We live in a society where nothing is ever enough and people are always looking ten steps forward while missing out on right now. Life happens, and you have to roll with it, but don't trap yourself in not being happy in the moment."

I really am a positive person. I am happy and have a pretty balanced life for the most part. I've had trials that I've had to learn to overcome, but at the end of the day I am very blessed and optimistic. I can't pin point when it started, but I will say that in the past year, I have become fearful of what bad thing will happen next. Actually, I take that back… I can pin point when it started. It was when the kids entered our lives and my heart and feelings inside grew to spaces I never knew existed or that even needed more growth. Sometimes, when you have more to loose, the fear of loosing it is very overwhelming.

I'll give you a petty example of what I mean. A year and a half ago we bought our perfect little home in downtown Phoenix, in an area I had dreamed of living in. We had worked hard to save our money for this place, and were excited for a new chapter. This new chapter eventually brought Zoe and Shiloh to us, a new office for Threads, an amazing job change for Mike, and several other incredible blessings. I never pictured that later in the year, our entire bathroom ceiling would collapse, three of our other rooms would be on the verge of collapse, our air would go out in the middle of 115 degree summer over 10 times leaving us without a place to live, and that an intruder would break in through Zoe's bedroom window one night. This intrusion gave me intense anxiety until we moved out of the house 8 months later. 

Obviously, most of the circumstances listed above are temporal and in the long run don't really matter. AND in every situation we were being protected so that no physical harm ever came to us. But everything we face in life impacts the way we face things in the future. That house situation is a very small peek into my life, and the past year I have dealt with very hard family and work related situations that I have felt very incapable of being able to know how to handle and deal with. In my life, there have been moments where I know nothing else to do other than sit and pray and cry.

And then things get better.

But this pattern of good and bad, I have noticed today, has gotten me in a very bad pattern of over anticipating what is going to go wrong next when everything seems to be going right. It's a horrible attitude. One that discredits blessings from God and moments that deserve nothing but joy, happiness, and gratitude. I'm sure many of you have this problem, too.

Today when I realized that my thoughts and feelings towards my current opportunities and situation in life was completely off target, I sat and I prayed. Part of my prayer went something along the lines of,

...Please take this fear out of my heart, and replace it with faith. Faith that even when things get hard, that you will be there to guide me, and a knowledge that no matter what happens, it will be okay. I don't want to live my life ungrateful about any of my circumstances, and I just need peace and assurance that you'll always be there…

And the peace came.

Just like my mom said, you have to roll with life. Crap happens, a lot. It's life.
But good things happen too, a lot. Because it is life, and we actually are here to be happy.
The nature of my work and life puts me in a lot of other peoples lives who deal with really, really, really extreme and hard situations. I take these burdens on most of the time, so when I feel relief from them, it's a weird and uplifting feeling. Instead of anticipating when things will be getting bad again, life is best lived when living happily in the moment, taking things as they come, and knowing that no matter what, God is on your side.

The reason I share this with you today is because I know that somewhere out there, several of you are currently experiencing these types of feelings too. And I wanted to let you know that you're not crazy ;)
But mostly, I wanted to let you know that you deserve to be happy.

And no guilt should ever come from being happy.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Make Up Products That Make You Glow!

I've been getting asked a lot about my makeup routine, so I thought I would post some of my favorite products that I have found. I wanted makeup that would give me that "glow" and I finally found some! You can glam it up or wear less of it depending on your time and where you are going, but on average I spend about 15 minutes a day on makeup. Nothing too crazy :) The links to these items will be found at the bottom of the post!

1- Rohto Cooling Eye Drops-  I have very dry eyes here in the desert, and squirting this little over the counter eye drop magic into them works wonders. They are the best eye drops, and are great eye drops for red eyes. I've been putting them in right before I put any other product on my face.

2- Liquid foundation and concealer- I absolutely love liquid foundation, and Mac has the best I've ever used. It's great for dry and oily skin, and adding a concealer on top of it adds extra light and coverage to your face.

3. Gel Eyeliner- game changer. Get it, and never turn back

4. Eye Shadow Base- You can use this by itself and it will last all day. Put it in the creases around your eye as well and it's seriously sooo pretty.

5. Golden tone eyeshadows- they light you up!

6. Bronzer- right below those cheek bones… add some color to your face!

7. Pink blush- find a good tone for your skin, blush fixes everything.

8. Mac highlighter- Okay, I just started using this a month ago and I wish I would have found it years before. This is what adds the ultimate "glow" to your face. Put it above your blush, on your chin, and right above your lip. Invest in this…it will last you forever and is seriously amazing.

Lucky for you, Rohto is giving you a chance to win a sweet prize to help with your daily beauty routine!

Add Rohto Cooling Eye Drops to your morning beauty regimen for a bright, clear start to your day. Enter to win a box of Rohto Cool MAX along with a $25 Visa gift card to put towards the rest of your beauty regime.

To enter: fill out the Rafflecopter, and links to all the beauty products will be found below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

3 Things To Do While Pregnant

photos by: Mallory Fraughton , makeup by: Harley Chapman

My sister, BFF, business partner and favorite person is having her baby any day… which makes me… almost an aunt to the cutest little guy I've ever seen! Today, Brooke is sharing three things to do during pregnancy… We'll miss her around the office for two months, but can't wait to see the next phase of her life and be a part of it!

Here's Brooke.

1.  Be easy on yourself: I think it's safe to say that I cause myself more stress than anyone or anything else does.  I expect myself to always go a million miles a minute.  To keep a clean house, cook healthy meals, exercise daily, work, get this done and that done.  The list never ends and that is how I function.  It has only taken me several occasions to realize if I over do it while pregnant, the next day I will pay for it.  Although my husband has always done a lot for us I have learned during this time it's okay for me to ask him for extra help.  I have slept more than usual, cut my exercise way back, and allowed myself time to read and relax.  Doing this has made my pregnancy so enjoyable.  It's a great excuse to take a step back and really enjoy the moment you are in.  I know this time will soon come to an end and I will be back to going a million miles a minute with a new baby around to join the party.

2.  Spend more quality time with your husband: My husband and I have have known each other for a really long time.  We both realize that a new baby will change our family completely.  We are ready for that change, but have also used these past nine months to soak up the final time we have as two.  These past couple of months we have enjoyed lots of dates eating at new places we have wanted to try, running errands together, picking out furniture for our new house, going on walks, watching movies on the couch and just being together.  We know these things will be difficult to do with a new baby, so we have used the free time we have to be together.  Not only has it been fun, but we have become closer than ever during my pregnancy and I know we are prepared for this big change and to become parents together.

3.  Work as long as you can: Ya, this sounds like a weird one and maybe it is for most people...but I guess I have a really cool job.  I know it's not possible for everyone, like my best friend who was put on bed rest for practically her whole pregnancy.  People always tell me how anxious they have gotten towards the end or even the beginning of pregnancy.  Since everything else about my life is changing, it has been a nice constant to be able to continue working hopefully until I go into labor.  It has helped me focus my attention on something else as well as interact with people on a daily basis since soon I will be going into hibernation with my baby.  Another added bonus is the money that we are able to save during this time since a baby means additional expenses now and in the future.  Not everyone works and that's fine, but try to keep yourself occupied with meaningful jobs, hobbies, and tasks that you would typically do.

I can honestly say these past nine months have been some of the best times of my life.  Nothing is as important or significant as this little baby growing in my tummy, so my perspective has changed.  I am happier, more easy going and focused on what's important in my life. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Where There Is No Struggle, There Is No Strength

Shirt, photos by Mallory Fraughton 
This is the final shirt in our 7 week employee campaign. Meet Jasmine, our 19 year old employee who has been with us for about 2 years. This fall she starts college and will be the first in her family to do so. She's a woman of few words, but the ones she says really count. Thanks for helping her pay her way through college.

"I've been through financial issues, loss of a parent, physically and emotionally beaten and bruised.Strength doesn't just come to you. You have to work hard even when you feel like giving up."

When there is no struggle, there is no strength.

You can purchase Jasmines shirt, along with our other employee designed shirts here.