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All About Me

Thursday Things, 30 July 2015

Tomorrow I’m going on a short road trip with my parents!

I was trying to think of the last time I went on a long car trip with just my parents.

I can’t even remember.

Before my sister maybe?

If that’s the case, I’m thinking it’s been 25 years.

Surely not!

Regardless, I’ve got my “fun bag” of magazines, books, podcasts, and music to sing aloud to (no barbies or coloring books like in the old days), so I should keep myself occupied in the backseat.

I will also try my best not to repeatedly ask, “Are we there yet?” Or continually tell them I’m hungry.

Considering I still do all those annoying things on road trips with Will, they’re in for quite a treat.

Dogs get hangry too.

And it’s a little scary.

So Teddy, our beloved, happy-go-lucky lab, has grown into quite a chunk.

Labs are often predisposed to weight gain, but our Teddy takes the cake.

Sooo, Teddy is on a doggy weight loss plan and diet food.

Sounds awful, right?

What’s hilarious, though, are the parallels between her diet and anytime I’ve dieted in my life.

Just as I bark and squak around mealtime when I haven’t eaten as much as I normally do, Teddy’s right on target at 5:30 AM and PM.

Just like I ravenously attack my dinner and feel “so totally thrilled” with salad AGAIN, Teddy also dives into her diet friendly food and immediately returns to the door to make sure I didn’t forget her real food.

As if her dinner was just a snack.

I get it, totally. A woman after my own heart.

She’s a dear, but she’s not nearly as active anymore. Just as I (occasionally) loathe intense exercise, Teddy Tutu isn’t so much into increased activity these days ether.

Our Teddy. God help us all.

Two Words: Lime Basil

Did you know that’s a thing?

Like a real life type of basil?

I had no idea.

I bought a lime basil pod for my latest aerogarden and was so surprised to find just how lime-y it is!

Lime-y in the best way possible.

My green monsters taste like fragrant citrus frozen treats.

Brace Face
Thankfully, I was blessed to have perfectly straight teeth.

My parents were very thankful, considering they had to put two sets on poor P.

Every dentist appointment they make note of my nice, straight teeth… Which I’m sure they do to flatter you, right?

Anyway, I had a checkup earlier this week and as the doctor finished his exam he said, “Have you ever thought about braces?”

I honestly looked at him like he had four heads and said, “Are you being serious?!”

Anyway, apparently I have a gap between my upper and lower teeth that could be fixed by braces “if I wanted.”

Considering I’m not entirely keen on wearing braces for a year, oh and the thousands of dollars I just so happen to have lying around for that sort of thing I kindly declined.

But remained a little self-conscious the rest of the day. 

Boomer Sooner Season
Guys, football kicks off in a month.

A month!

How is this even possible!?

I’m debating whether I’ll go to the first game. I always like to, but it is usually so dang hot and I want to die, and Will wants to die because of what a pleasure I am to be around when I want to die.

So yeah. Heat. Football. Bah.

Regardless, I’m excited it’s here!

Lets discuss mini cupcakes

Layla and my mom brought Will over a cupcake for his birthday earlier this week. So sweet! Layla also kindly picked out a teeny vanilla cupcake for her aunt Brittny to accompany Will’s treat.

It was divine.

But it got me thinking.

What are your thoughts on mini cupcakes?

I decided my opinion really depends.

It was a fantastic surprise earlier this week.

It was a tiny bite to enjoy without any guilt. I felt like I got the best of both worlds!

However, today I’m feeling a tad overwhelmed and hangry. I did a hard workout and would probably welcome a big fat cupcake if it nicely wedged itself into today’s macro count.

A mini cupcake would probably just annoy me.

So yeah. I think it probably just depends on the person...and their mood. smile

That’s all for today! Check in tomorrow! 💗

Will’s Relaxing Birthday Weekend & Look Ahead

Ant man.., and holding Will's popcorn

All smiles
Atm

Aero garden

Our first baby pepper!

Boz
Ann Voskamp

😂
Church with Layla
Church with Layla

Ant Man date with Will, At the Movies door hanging with dad, UFC fights, two big fat birthday cheat meals, workouts, church with Layla, lunch with my parents, food prep, house stuff, and relaxing.

It was a much needed relaxing weekend spent entirely with Will. Between hosting his parents last weekend and preparing to go out of town without him this weekend, I was glad to have some time to spend just with him!

Today Will celebrates 35! I can’t believe how quickly the years have passed. How is he already 35!?! I am so blessed to have been able to watch him grow into such a wise and wonderful man. I can’t believe he picked me to be his wife.

Check in this week for Thursday Things and a Friday devo.

And now? Off to tackle Monday. 

The Early Birthday Celebration Weekend

Va clinic waiting game
Happy birthday!

Happy birthday!
🌱

Weekend things
Leg day
Layla's first movie

Layla's first movie
Dress up with Layla

Dress up with Layla
At the movies!

A long Friday at the VA clinic with Will’s dad, lots of chats with his parents while waiting, a healthy dinner at Jason’s Deli (have you seen their salad bar!?), followed by not so healthy but delicious ice cream cake, Layla’s first movie going experience, playtime with Layla (and my family 😄), house stuff, super sweaty workouts, food prep, church, and a very restful Sunday.

We had a wonderful weekend full of family and fun and I’m sad to have it behind me!

Check in this week for a pre-workout review and more!

I hope you had a great weekend. What did you do?

Weekend Recap

Friday truth

New crop!

This.

Cookie dough and Oreos

Topped with brownie batter and baked

Finished product

Just when things couldn't get any unhealthier, let's top with ice cream!

Boz

Sleeping beauty

Fight night

a data-flickr-embed="true" data-header="true" data-footer="true" href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/7217695@N02/19644089511/in/photostream/" title="At the movies!">At the movies!

At the movies!

Lunch with some of my favorite former coworkers (they totally get me), house stuff, workouts, lunch with my parents, ridiculously delicious and unhealthy brownies, UFC fights, and Life Church At the Movies!

It was a pretty quiet weekend, which was a nice treat.

Thankfully, although I have a long work week ahead, it’s my short week and I get to see my sister try on wedding dresses. Yippee!

Off to conquer Monday. How was your weekend?

Part Four

Need a recap? Check out part one, two, and three.

So what now? Where do we go from here?

Good question.

The truth is, I have no idea.

It drives me crazy.

It drives Will crazier.

I began to think this whole unfolding was God’s “gentle” way of bringing Will back to the ministry, but we honestly have no idea.

So we wait on the Lord and take the next step He illuminates.

Despite the unknown, God has given me peace and assurance that my waiting has a purpose

I continue to live and walk in Him day by day.

The unexpected blessings that have arrived in our bank account, the continued reminders to trust and wait on the Lord in my daily readings, and the peace that surpasses all understanding. These things give me rest.

Sometimes you just need to rest.

Rest in the Lord.

We decided Will would take the summer off so we could catch our breath.

It’s been a bumpy start to the year, and we thought it would be good to regroup.

We didn’t just want to jump right into something else without truly seeking God and figuring out the next step.

Because honestly? We still don’t know.

The world tells us we need a five year plan. That we should know exactly what comes next and have a clear cut plan for execution.

While Proverbs certainly offers wisdom regarding preparedness, we also know we walk by faith and not by sight.

Verses

We can plan until we’re blue in the face, but sometimes God has a different plan.

Verses

God is up to something and wants to work in and through us if we allow Him.

That means surrender.

A word we don’t often like to use.

Verses

Sometimes that means our five year plans of grandeur get tossed altogether.

As Christians, we live differently than everyone else because we serve a God like none other.

It’s scary sometimes.

Because we can’t see what’s next.

But we walk by faith, and not by sight.

So, instead of Will just finding any old job immediately, we just decided to wait this summer and pray for direction. 

I would be lying if I told you there were days I wasn’t frustrated, or unsure, or completely exhausted by the waiting.

I feel that way sometimes.

There are no neon signs on the road we’re walking.

No bread crumbs to lead us home.

It’s us, and it’s God.

I often remind myself of the words He spoke to my heart last summer. “Do you trust Me?”

It seems logical to want to say no. It seems logical to flail my arms and scream that we have no idea what to do next.

Yet, we trust.

The spirit in me has yielded to God, and while I don’t know what our five year plan holds, I trust.

We put one foot in front of the other and let Him guide and lead.

We know the next step, that’s it.

I am preparing to launch my women’s Bible study.

Will and I are praying about a location to hold a Bible study for men and women.

It’s the natural next step, and how the Spirit has led our hearts during this time of uncertainty. 

We’ll take the summer off, and we’ll trust Him with Will’s job hunt just like we have every other step of this process.

Despite the craziness, things have actually gotten simpler:

I exist to know Christ.

To know Him deeply. To love Him fiercely. To serve Him wholeheartedly.

This life?

It’s not about me.

Something I knew, but only lived out when it was comfortable to do so.

Five year plans are great, but life really comes down to one question- do you know Christ? Do you really know Him in the core of your whole being? What have you done with this Good News?

While I want to be able to live with some semblance of a plan as we work through this process, this experience has reminded me of my true purpose-

To know the fullness of Christ and the power of His resurrection.

I am left only to respond with my entire heart.

Anything, Lord Jesus.

Anything you want me to do, anywhere you want me to go, anything you want me to say.

Anything Lord.

This year hasn’t gone as planned, but we’re here, and we’re trusting, and we’re finally starting to get it.

We are made for You.

May it be on the forefront of our minds.

So what’s next for our family?

I don’t know.

But I know it’s not about me, and the pressure’s off in finally grasping that reality.

I appreciate your prayers as we start Will’s job hunt, as well as whatever else is in store.

Love you girls! Check in next week. 💗

The 4th of July Weekend & Look Ahead

Road tripping
Treats with friends
Layla turns three!
Celebrating Layla's birthday!
Layla turns three!

Layla turns three!
Birthday play date

😂

After party breakfast of champions.

He loves to cuddle
🎆

A jam packed Independence Day weekend! Cleaning all day Thursday (and a broken garbage disposal 😕), a trip to see Will’s parents and one of my dearest godly girlfriends, a special birthday party for a three year old (how is she three!?!), house stuff, church, workouts, and women’s soccer.

Whew!

I have a long and busy week ahead and I’m already missing the weekend. Here’s to being our best this week and powering through with grace.

Hope you had a good weekend! What did you do?

WIOW: Bootcamp & a Bible Study (tips on starting your own workout group)

Today we’re talking my latest project.

Something that combines two things near to my heart- Jesus and workouts.

Jesus is my life and passion, and fitness is a giant earthly love I enjoy so very much.

It may seem weird to combine the two, but it’s not as big of a stretch as you’d think.

When you stop and think about God giving us this life and wanting us to honor Him with our temples, it’s easy to see how we can worship Him by taking care of our bodies.

It’s also not a stretch to see God leading me on this direction. Theee things are sort of my jam. They’re where I’m in my element.

I’ve been creating meal plans and workouts for friends for years, and continually get asked for advice workout tips.

Over a year ago, I did Jennie Allen’s Restless study. In a nutshell, the book talks about using your passions and the things He’s wired you for to serve Christ. 

I felt a stir in my heart, but struggled to believe He’d ever truly open that door for me.

Small faith, big fears.

Fast forward to today, and I’m preparing finishing touches on launching my boot camp and a Bible study! A short Bible study and prayer time followed by a quick high powered workout.

He is so good to me, I cant even take it sometimes!

Today I wanted to share a few practical tips for anyone interested in putting their fitness passion into practice in a similar forum.

And by that, I mean a (somewhat) organized fitness event.

There’s a few things to consider, so let’s get moving!

Waive hello to all your friends
Sorry, stupid joke.

But seriously- you need to get a waiver form together and have any attendee sign it. This protects you from lots of things, like lawsuits.

There are tons of helpful jargon waiver tips on legal sites online, and some are even free.

Protect yourself. Do a waiver form.

Location, location, location
Find a good spot to meet, and stick with it.

Make sure you’re easy to find! If people can’t find you, chances are they’re not going to come looking.

A lot of people aren’t in love with fitness like some of us. If you’re not visible, they’re getting back in their car and driving home!

Timing is everything

Pick a time and be consistent.

You probably know the people attending and will have a good idea whether they’ll be there bright eyed and on time or not.

Not everyone wants to workout at 4am.

I’m kind of in unknown territory right now because I don’t have a core group. I picked a time I think is attainable, but am going to be willing to flex 30 minutes after the first couple of times when I can get a better idea of attendance.

Also- make sure you call your local community government office to see if you need to have a permit.

A lot of places now require you to have a permit for organized events. It basically tells people, “Hey! I’m allowed to be here!”

Make sure you find out if you need one, and take the steps to get one if you do.

While we’re talking governance...
Make sure you investigate community laws when it comes to public nuisance and loud music.

Not kidding.

It only takes one call to mess up your perfect boot camp location.

Do your homework and know your rights.

Also?

Use sound judgement and be a good neighbor.

Obviously you don’t need to read bylaws to know it’s rude to host a boot camp in your back yard at 5:00 in the morning with music blaring for all the world to hear.

Since we’re talking music...
It’s kind of a huge deal.

Invest in some decent outdoor speakers (if you’ll be outdoors). They’re surprisingly cheap and should last a long time.

Keep things fresh with a few different playlists and always be on the lookout for songs to add.

I’ve talked about music till I’m blue in the face on this blog. I’ve got a mile long list of fantastic Christian remixes to keep things moving the entire workout. I can’t wait!

Don’t forget to modify!
My dream is to have women from all walks of life join me in this journey.

It’s about glorifying God with healthy bodies, foremost. Not how many burpees we can do.

Be willing to modify exercises for people with different fitness needs and levels. Some knees are older than others! smile

So yeah. That’s what’s going on these days. I am really excited to see what God does with my surrendered heart to this calling.

I sure wish you ladies could come work out with me! We would have such a good time.

That’s it for today. Check in tomorrow! 

The One with Fireworks & a Look Ahead

Truth
Waiting for her dad
Weekend treats
Play dates with Layla
Trimming the peppers
Cozy
Following the girl

🎆
🎆
My summer is complete.
Slumber party!

Pink n Pups
Big and little

Chickfila breakfast with Will, a lazy Saturday afternoon, a night full fun with Layla and my parents, an early fireworks show, s’mores, workouts, food prep, house stuff, church, and a restful Sunday afternoon.

It was a nice weekend, and I’d normally sad to see it end.

Thankfully it’s Independence Day week!!!

Yay for short weeks.

Check in this week for #lovewins, my newest project, part 4, and more.

Here’s to a good Monday! ❤️

Part Three

Before we get going, you can check out part one here and part two here.

I realize I’ve been dragging this story out for-ev-er, but this is my life right now. I wanted to stop and take a minute to really get everything on “paper” while it was still fresh.

Let’s get going.

**********

I was full of bitterness and anger for days after making the decision to sell our portion of the business. I didn’t really feel like we had much choice and were bullied into it.

Will was quiet after the first couple of weeks and internalized everything. I feel like he knew in his heart he made the best decision for our family and had peace from God amidst the pain.

I, on the other hand, had peace but would let my big fat mouth flap about how mad I was whenever we were alone.

Sounds real peaceful, right? Ha!

I felt so wronged. How could someone we trusted do something this hurtful?

The anger consumed me for days.

And then telling people.

It was like reopening the wound over and over.

Will was so proud of this opportunity and had joyfully shared it with many of our family members and friends.

It was like reliving the pain anytime they asked how the business was going.

We knew, absolutely knew, this was a God thing. Yet, in our own prideful perspective, we didn’t really approach it that way at first.

It felt embarrassing, angering, and painful.

Not only that, but it wasn’t as easy as just selling the business. It required a process of paperwork and phone calls. Opening the hurt over and over.

I knew in my heart it wasn’t healthy to let it grow and fester, but honestly? In my own sick justification, it felt good to feel angry.

Have you ever been there?
Verses

The holy spirit began working on my heart. I knew He wasn’t going to let me wallow for very long.

I (reluctantly) added the guy’s name to my prayer list.

Actually… I couldn’t even bear to write or pray his name. It hurt too much.

I simply added his initials to the list. I would just say “him” in my prayers. It felt like a monumental step.
Verses
Verses

For the first several days I prayed that my heart would forgive him. I knew The Lord wanted me to, but I struggled with wanting to.

He began to soften my hardened heart and restore me. He continually reminded me that He was in this..

Day by day I constantly thought about the question he asked me “Do you trust Me?”

Oh the stories I will share next week of His hand on us time and time again. 

To the Lord’s credit alone, I eventually even began praying God would bless the guy.

Nothing inside of me wanted that, and yet the Lord began to move me to pray for it. It was all God at work in my heart. Praise be to Him alone.

We finished up the sale earlier his year and finally felt a sense of closure. 

It was behind us.

But what was in front of us?

That was (and is) the big question. We’ll talk more about that next week.

So why am I sharing all this baggage and hurt with you?

Believe me, I’d much rather keep it to myself.

However, I truly believe there’s power in our stories. What satan or people mean for harm, God can use for good.

Perhaps you’ve been wronged and are deeply hurt by someone. I get that.

Perhaps like me, you enjoyed feeling anger toward that person and felt justified because of their painful actions. I get that too.

As trite as it sounds, it’s true- we are really only hurting ourselves when we don’t relinquish those awful feelings.

It really screws us up more than the other person.

It’s necessary to allow God to perform surgery on our hearts.

I’m not saying it’s wrong to be angry. That’s different. It’s what we do with the anger. It’s the bitterness and hatred that came with anger that got me.
Verses

The good news is, we don’t have to live with it.

He can take that big weight off our shoulders and transform it into forgiveness and restoration.

It seems lofty and impossible, but with God all things are possible.

When we give ourselves over to Jesus, He softens our hearts and helps us heal.

It feels so much better to remove any blockages from His presence. I never want to hinder my relationship with Him. I want to approach His throne with confidence, and that means drawing near with a pure heart, trusting in Him.

If you’ve been wronged by someone, I urge you to free yourself from any unforgiveness, and seek Him to overcome.

I can tell you firsthand- you will feel complete freedom and relief in doing so.

So what now for the B-Love family?

Check in next week for what’s been going on since this all unfolded. 

Until then, have a great weekend!

Father’s Day Weekend & Look Ahead

Interesting

Early Christmas

Selfies with Lucy
Lazy couch dates
OU football greats

Growth!

Baby pepper!

Dad ❤️
Fancy 3d glasses
😂🍗

A trip to see Will’s parents for Father’s Day, chores, workouts, Beckett card show and former OU football players, lunch with my parents for Father’s Day, church, 3-D movies, and food prep.

Check in this week for my summer workout playlist, my June ipsy review, and part three!

Here’s to a good week ahead!

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About

brittny I'm B-Love. Lover of God, my husband Will, my doggies, OU football, weight training, plyometrics healthy eating (mostly!), peanut butter, and all things health related. Buckle up and get ready for my constant embarrassing moments, health and fitness tips,and my effort to rely on Christ while living life in the real world. Follow me on Feedly! Sign up for monthly emails at blove@theblovelife.com!


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