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Summer June (and July) Update

Hello Dearies!

Let’s catch up!

How have you been?

Are your kids on summer break?

Are you taking any vacations?

Fill me in on everything.

As for things here, it’s been busy in the B-Love household!

Here’s a quick look at random and (not so) noteworthy things:

Home Improvement
Since we’re not in the throes of football season, we have a little time on our hands during the spring and summer weekends.

We decided to undertake some of the many projects we’d been putting off, pacing ourselves over the spring and summer months to get lots accomplished without burning ourselves out on the first project and never accomplishing anything.

Because we’re totally prone to procrastinate.

Well, mostly Will. Never me. (Haha)

We’ve redone our closet, done major yard work, and restarted our Aerogardens. We’ve got some more projects lined up this summer so here’s to keeping the momentum!

Hello there baby kale!

Oh and the Aerogarden? I’m growing kale and it’s the best decision I’ve made with this thing! I use greens everyday for my morning smoothie and it’s thrilling (yes, thrilling) to get to pluck my own leaves from my own garden.

Oh and since we’re still talking home stuff we had another snake sighting.

My house is officially for sale

Pretty sure we’re officially selling the house now. πŸ˜‚

Softball is in Full Swing!
Well, actually, it’s kind of winding down.

Spring ball was lots of fun for Will. I didn’t go to several games because many started at 9:30.

As a complete granny, 9:30 is past my week night curfew.

I’m sure you don’t understand.

Summer ball is around the corner, and I know Will is playing. He’s cute because he’s pretending to be somewhat on the fence about playing- but we both know he totally is.

Funny story.

Will plays coed softball and they’re always short girls. You have to have a certain amount of girls present in order to play.

One week they were short, as usual. They were desperate and it was a few minutes before the game.

I felt them staring me down, contemplating how they could legally physically drag me through the dirt and lay me in the outfield as their token final required girl.

I felt my body begin to tense as they approached.

Oh- and as a side note, incase you’re wondering why I dreaded the thought of playing?

It’s because I don’t play.

I’m a wilty flower.

No concept of sports.

Do I need to remind you I HATE BEING HOT?

Also, I have complete hands like pans.

You’d find me ducking to avoid the ball rather than diving to catch one.

I’m that girl.

Picking flowers in the outfield.

Afraid to get dirty.

No concept of batting or catching.

Please, for the love of God, don’t make me play!

Anyway, they approached me and another girl beside me I knew with the dreaded request.

A daughter of one of the players was sitting with us. A big tomboy and softball fanatic herself. She looked at them and said, “ She’s not going to play! She’s too pretty to play!”

I’m pretty positive that was not a complement, but she was right- I was NOT going to play.

I do, however, go and show my support. That counts for something, right?

Curly-Q
34 years into life I decided to master the curling iron.

I used one occasionally “back in the day,” but for the last 13 years or so only used a straightener to curl my hair.

Yes, I realize it sounds counter intuitive.

Anyway I did tons of research and ended up with a regular old gold Hot Tools one inch barrel curling iron.

It’s fantastic, and super affordable. Plus my stylist said it was a good choice. So yeah! Mid-30s and curling my hair with an actual device made to do just that. Go figure!

Wherein I rave about grocery store food
I went to Boston last month for work. Aside from one night, all my dinners came from the Wegmans deli.

Yep, the local grocery store.

If you have a Wegmans, you get it. If you don’t, you probably just think I’m weird.

All About That BOD
Are any of you guys Beachbody On Demand subscribers?

I signed up for the free 14 day trial to participate in Shaun-T with my blogger friend/Beachbody Coach, Erin.

It was so much stinkin’ fun! Well...fun if you enjoy being miserable and sweating your butt off during workouts, that is. Haha

I still have my gym membership but workout still home so much these days and could easily see myself buying a year subscription to it.

It’s got something for everyone and content is always updated which is good too. Definitely a win!

Other randomness
*We took an impromptu trip to Tulsa this month just to eat lunch at this delicious Mexican restaurant we enjoy.

We’re old fogies, so to up and decide at 10:00 on a Saturday that we’d go up there was spontaneous and fun. Haha

*We finished Fraiser for the second time and are back to The Andy Griffith Show.

Yes, real life. Black and white and all. We mostly only watch one a night as a “filler” with all our shows on break.

What I love most about watching Andy is that Will grew up watching them and knows so many of them. It’s so cute and reminds me what an oak tree he is.

*Amazon Prime music had pretty much been the best thing that’s happened to me.

In terms of music, that is.

I have the unpaid Spotify version which is nice, but I love Amazon because you can skip as many songs as you want- and no adds. The only downer is their selection is more limited than Spotify.  But.No.Adds.And.Unlimited.Skips

*Mason jar salads have changed my life. I realize I’m about four years late to the party but…
Wherein I become obsessed with food in mason jars
Known to occasionally use Pinterest

Good old Jimmy continues to kick my tail, & other related things

Guys, it’s JUNE and I just now reached chapter 5 in my study of James.

This book…

When I first felt the tug to choose it as my 2017 study, I honestly didn’t think there’d be much new to glean.

You know, since I’m so perfect. Ha!

I’ve allowed myself days upon days to sit in some of these passages, digging deep and really meditating on just how much I needed to read the words before me.

I’ve been so convicted over how I approach my life, how I speak, how I see others, and more.

If you want to be humbled in virtually every major aspect of your personal and social life, study James. I say it jokingly, but also seriously.

Wherein I started this in June and now it’s July. Ha!

Other randomness to catch you up:

So I started typing this last month and am already behind. 😊 Layla turns (or turned depending on when I get this up!) 5 on the 5th, so I’m pretty much dead she’s already a kindergartner.

Fireworks with my favorite gal

Layla turns 5

And- P is prego again! 😍😍😍 Real life.  Another girl too. Watch our world!

I took off a few days for the 4th and while I worked, it was still nice just to be home. We also made another quick trip to Tulsa to eat dinner at a place we enjoy. Crazy kids!

I signed up to be on our neighborhood welcome committee which I think will be a good thing, right?

So yeah- a huge, giant, slightly random and boring update.

It was necessary.

More to come- I promise.

Until then, I’m off to figure out how I can legitimately make s’mores fit into macros the rest of summer…
Binge smore-ing

Thirty-Four

Hello friends!

Today I’m 34.

Officially “mid-30s.” (Face palm)

Side note- can you believe I started this blog when I was 21!? Who chronicles anything that long these days? I feel like my posts should be encyclopedia-ed in a library or something.

Anyway, in years past, thought I’d share some deep thoughts (ha) as I head into this new year.

1.I’ve been very blessed to have my grandparents in my life as long as I have/did

I lost one of my grandparents last month and realize how truly blessed I’ve been to have three of the four alive up to that point.

I was able to see my grandma just a couple weeks before she passed, for which I’m thankful.

“>Grandma πŸ’—
<
Will and I also made a road trip to Iowa last fall to see my Gran. I'm so thankful for that time and those memories!

πŸ’— Gran

I’m also very close to Will’s grandparents, and treasure them as my own.

To be 34 and have 4 special grandparents in my life (my grandpa, gran, and Will’s grandma & grandpa) sure is special, and I’m very thankful.

2. Will is genuinely surprised by my OU fanaticism.

A few years ago, when OU was struggling, Will opted to sell our last two home game tickets.

That’s blasphemy, y’all.

You don’t just sell your tickets because your team stinks!

Will was completely shocked by how strongly I felt about going.

See, Will is what I consider a “real and educated” fan. He loved them in the 90s just as much as he does now, guys.

If you know OU football in the 90s, you know that means a lot.  He knows seemingly everything about OU football, and I love it.

Anyway, he also listens to a radio during the game so he can hear the play-by-play.

Since he listens to the radio, he never realized how colorful my commentary is for the poor souls that sit behind and in front of us.

Nothing inappropriate, of course, but I’m rather talkative and lively.

Confession: I even sometimes annoy myself.

All this time he had no idea. Haha

The people around us, however? Yeah, they knew.

So yeah, while I’ve always been an OU fan (I say that loosely), I mostly married into the crazy.

However, my love for OU football has honestly become all my own over the last several years. It makes it that much more fun!

OU-ISU!

3. I’m harder on myself than I realize.

I never give myself enough credit. I’m always convinced of the worst. Quite a pessimist at times, which is strange because I generally try to think positively!

I honestly need to cut myself some slack sometimes. Take a deep breath. Not be so darn tightly wound.

For some silly reason I feel like I work for the Counter Terror Unit (that’s for all my old Jack Bauer 24 fans out there 😊) where I can’t take a single day off without the nation going into a tailspin.

It’s ridiculous, really.

One of the things about coming back to this job was that I knew I was going to have to be better about not driving myself crazy. Not putting too much on myself or worrying about everything.

I’ve done better, but I’m still not there. I’d like 34 to be the year when I do better and let go of some of those things. To pray more and just let go of so much of what I can’t control.

In fact, things are crazy at work right now. The old me wouldn’t have taken today off. The 34 year old me took it off anyway even though I’ll be checking email all day. I’d say I’m off to a good decent start!

4. Two Words: Mascara Primer
I’m not kidding. I discovered the fantasticness of daily mascara primer at 33 and I will never.go.back.

What’s a mascara primer? It’s basically a bra for your lashes.

Real life.

I honestly thought it was an unnecessary splurge, but guys- it’s kind of a must, especially if you’re like me and never leave enough time in your morning to apply eyeshadow.

Not all primers are equal.

I’m a Mary Kay girl through and through, but honestly you can’t beat the LancΓ΄me CILS mascara primer.

Line your eyes, curl your lashes, prime them, & add mascara. Trust me here. Game changer.

5.I actually think I’m pretty good at what I do
Coming back to my old job kind of fit like a glove.

I know what I’m doing, and I’m comfortable doing it. In fact, I was blessed to even get a promotion after being there less than a year.

Remember #3? I’m often too hard on myself and I need to remember I’m doing a good job and it’s ok to take a breath every now and then. I need to pray more, worry less. Trusting God with my job.

As crazy as it may seem, I distinctly remember praying for my future job when I was a teenager. I had no idea what I was going to do (Um, and I still don’t) but I remember praying for the job I’d have one day.

Guys, He is so faithful.  I honestly had no idea how 15 years later He would so richly answer my teenager prayers.

I could tell you it’s all because of my awesome smarts (um- it’s not) or communication skills (again no) or my “can do” attitude (nope, nope, and nope), but it unequivocally is none of those things.

It’s completely God’s faithfulness and provision, equipping me and helping me each and every step of the way.

6. In follow-up to #4
Since I already talked about my must have primer, I might as well share some more of my favorites for with my favorite 30 something gals.

Smashbox Primer Oil
I got this as a sample in my Ipsy several months ago and kind of forgot about it until this year.

Oh.My.Stars.

For my dry skinned girls, this is the bees knees.

My skin is super dry and makes me look way older than 34. My eye lines and forehead lines get so dry, and translucent powder atop my foundation just magnified the problem.

This primer is aces to help give extra moisture for these areas and hydrate all day with a beautiful but subtle glow.

I’m not going to lie, it’s expensive, and was a birthday gift to myself this year (plus a tube of mascara primer 😊). I bought it for my “free” Sephora birthday gift.

For me, it’s a luxe item, but I think it will last forever.

Knock-off Beauty Blenders
I usually tend to these things are sort of unnecessary, however a lot of the cheap ones work really well and give a beautiful, air brush flawless coverage. I got a Mint Pear blender in my Ipsy and really like it because it has a more contoured side for eyes and nose, but a larger side for the rest of the fact.

Mary Kay Repair Eye Cream & Night Treatment

I’m Mary Kay through and through when it comes to skincare. As a consultant,my loyalty lies with all their products, especially their skincare.

Their new line for “mature” skin is out of this world.

I don’t use all the products in that line just yet, but I have incorporated a couple of them into my daily routine and THEY WORK.

Their night cream is ridiculous. It has retinol and a host of moisturizing goodness to improve texture, lines, age spots, and damage.

It is pure fantasticness AND cheaper than the currently popular Rodan & Fields.

Their eye cream is equally potent. Sadly, due to the fact I treated my skin like crap in my teens (hello tanning beds!) plus genetics, there’s not a lot of hope for me here to some degree, but I’m thankful for the options I have that help!

7. I’ll never enjoy hot weather

Ever.

I hate hot weather.

I wither like a wilty flower.

I melt like a sno-cone in Phoenix.

I turn into a puddle of humid-y sweat and become quite the grouch!

It’s awful y’all.

It’s already been near 90 this year and everyone’s all,” It’s gorgeous outside!”

No. No it’s not.

A couple of us have been taking a quick break to walk a mile during the work day. It’s been so wonderful!

We sit hours on end each day, and many doctors claim desk jobs can be just as dangerous as smoking!

It’s been good to stretch our legs, get moving, and reduce stress, even if it’s just a few minutes.

The problem is...summer is approaching.

I’m not into sweating in work clothes (um or ever aside from the gym)…

But, I’ve come to crave my daily walk and can honestly attest to the benefits!

So I might have to see about going earlier.

This heat thing isn’t something I learned over the year, but it’s definitely been reaffirmed.

If it hasn’t changed now, it never will.

So if you invite me for a summer BBQ, let’s pretty please eat inside. Or at midnight.

(And as an aside, turns out I shared this exact same thing on my 32nd birthday. πŸ˜‚ See? Some things never change)

Drinks are my jam.

Over the last year, I’ve become quite the drinker.

Hot flavored teas, cold flavored teas, coffee with a smidge of creamer…

All the caffeine-y drinks.

Don’t worry, I realize these can become a calorie trap. It’s all about moderation, and I find a sweet drink treat can help fend cravings in the afternoon.

My current favorite? Celestial Seasonings peach tea with a shot of Coffeemate Italian Sweet Cream. At 30 calories it keeps me from donuts that abound in the break room!

9. Keep it Short & Sweaty

My workouts completely changed in my 30s, especially last year. While I enjoy longer workouts on the weekend, I’ve really begun to emphasize short and sweaty workouts.

I choose not to make time for long sessions during the work week but have not at all seen my weight go up.  In fact, I’ve read lots of reputable articles that attest to the value of short, quality workouts.

I limit them to 30-35 minutes and move pretty much the entire time.

My favorite right now? Les Mills GRIT Strength. Look it up on YouTube and take a “class” at home.

It’s awful in the best way possible.

10. By and large, I’m done with today’s Christian literature

Since entering my 30s, my heart has shifted regarding Bible study.

There was a time in which I relied heavily on today’s Christian authors to help me understand the Bible. However, a lot of books being published by “Christian” authors today are misguided at best, and heresy at worst. Quite frankly, it’s alarming.

The Lord has certainly raised up pillars of the faith who speak Truth. Their words, books, etc. can certainly be edifying to the church, but they are no comparison to the Bible itself.

It’s in knowing the Word of God for myself I am able to test the spirits, to know the Truth for myself. Not because some famous Christian author told me their interpretation of the Truth, but rather because I read it and study it myself.

I am burdened for the increasing biblical illiteracy within the church, and especially in my generation. We must get back to Truth. Testing “Christian” books against Scripture. Knowing the Bible ourselves. Not solely relying on others to spoon feed us. I desire meat, not milk, as scripture says.

33 brought an entire year devoted to the Gospel John & his epistles.

It revolutionized my Bible study. 

When I started, I wondered how I could ever study such a seemingly small piece of the Bible for a whole entire year. However, as December approached I began to wonder if I’d even be able to finish!

While I certainly relied on several resources during that year to compliment my study, the Bible was the main star. I realize that’s how it should be, after all, it’s Bible study, but that hasn’t always been the case.

Anyway, 33 was a huge year for me spiritually. I’m trusting 34 to be the same.

So yeah! “Deep thoughts” from a 34 year old blonde. Ha!

Switching gears, I also want to take a moment to acknowledge today. Good Friday.

It feels odd celebrating today when I generally find myself more somber and contemplative on this day.

When I consider Jesus was my age (well, my age yesterday) when He died, it adds an entirely new layer for me.

I consider His life as I consider my new year, but today I also consider His death. His sacrifice. His cross. The atonement and only acceptable payment for my wretchedness.

As I consider the magnitude of today, the depth of Good Friday, I am reminded that all I have to offer is my life. To dedicate each and every day of 34 to the glory of Him who gave me new life. And on that note? Here’s to 34.

(Almost) 34

To My Grandma (6/2/1931- 3/10/2017)

Grandma ❀ June 2,1931- March 10, 2017

You taught me about gardening.

You taught me about cooking.

Brittny-6 yrs old with Grandma Stroh learning how to make sausage

You taught me how to be tough (though I’ll never be), but also tender.

I’ll miss your rye bread, strawberry-rhubarb jelly, cabbage pockets, and cookies. Your fresh fruits and veggies, your beautiful flowers.

Brittny,Carissa & Grandpa & Grandma Stroh-2003

I’ll miss being your “little helper"- even well into my 30s.

I’ll miss seeing you fall asleep in your chair with a crossword puzzle across your chest, or hearing about all the books you’re reading.

I’ll miss talking about so many memories, and just having you in the same room.

I will miss so many things about you, but above all, I’ll just miss you.
Brittny Flint-2 years old & Grandma Stroh in Germany

“Lucky “ #13

Today Will and I celebrate our 13th anniversary.

Will & Brittny in the reception line

We were babyfaced kids the day we married. I was a month shy of 21, and he was 23.

We’d both never been on our own.

We hadn’t a clue how to do anything!

All-in-all, it was wonderful.

We were shiny-faced kids navigating this huge, serious thing called life with enthusiasm. Untainted by the world and invincible.

Will & Brittny-Feb 2003

Many say the first year is the hardest, but it was so fun for us!

Brittny&#x27;s 20th birthday with Will-2003

On our own for the very first time, and figuring it out together.

Then at some point reality sets in.

You grow up.

You aren’t kids anymore.

Life happens.

You have grown up problems and responsibilities.

You stay the same.

You change.

You endure a lifetime of ups and downs.

Some days you feel like that shiny faced kid.

Other days you feel ancient.

Some days you laugh until cry,

Other days the weight of reality feels too heavy to bear.

Let’s face it, “adult-ing” is hard. 

Just when you think you’ve got it figured out, you quickly realize you don’t!

OU OSU

I’m incredibly blessed I have Will to walk alongside me through the ups and downs.

WB ready for a sooner victory! OU takes Tennessee

I can’t believe I get to be married to him and journey this crazy life together.

Future Sooner anchors

It honestly feels too good to be true.

I remember being a young teen, writing letters to my future husband, praying for him and hoping the Lord would answer my prayers.

Through I’m incredibly underserving, the Lord heard my prayers and blessed me far beyond my dreams. I definitely got the better end of the deal.

OU-TCU, too close for comfort. Get will quick Baker. We need you!

We are so deeply intertwined and not only spouses, but best friends.

I was over the moon for him 13 years ago, and I still am today.

Only now it’s deeper, more powerful, and wrapped in a lifetime of real life, not happily-ever-after fairytales.

It hasn’t been perfect. Not even close. I thank God every day for His grace.

This is a typical Family picture. Will, God love him, hates taking pictures, so I had to share what I usually get when someone tries to snap a pic of us. 😊 Merry Christmas! πŸ’—πŸŽ„

So here’s to lucky number 13, on March 13th no less!  Certainly no luck involved here. Rather God’s provision, mercy, and blessing.

Celebrating Jesus❀ Merry Christmas!

Cheers 13.

Will & Brittny laughing at the alter

Thursday Things, 6 Oct 2016

It’s pedal to the metal today with no real direction, so you’ve been warned!

Did I tell you guys we went to Houston last month?

I probably didn’t because not only was it a whirlwind trip, but the Sooners lost and we didn’t do anything exciting.

In fact, we drove the 8 hour trip Friday and did it again Sunday. Whew! It was tiring!

Mostly for Will, as he drove the entire time because I’m a terrible driver he prefers to drive.

Anyway, I anticipated being a terrible copilot, as I have a hard time staying occupied in contained spaces.

I did surprisingly well! I think it’s because I’ve taken a few longer car trips in the last two years.  I saved up tons of magazines and blogs to read along the way, and listened to a ton of podcasts I’d been saving.

Plus we had a free trial of XM radio, so Will could listen to sports while I self-occupied.

A win for everyone.

Until he found the Garth Brooks channel.

That was not a win for everyone.

What also wasn’t a win, was the game.

No need to talk about it other than the fact that we sat in front of Houston fans and I had beer spilled on me not once, but twice.

I thought Will was going to become completely unhinged the first time it happened, but I was wrong. He came unhinged the second time.

Sigh.

Sadly we had big plans to eat a nice dinner at Shula’s and enjoy the town but we were both exhausted from the long day of driving and then the loss took the wind out of our sails. We ended up eating at the hotel restaurant watching more college football.

So yeah! Fun times in Houston! Haha

Since we’re still (sort of) talking football...

Will and I decided to make a football season bucket list this year with all sorts of random ways to maximize our most favorite time of year.

This season goes too fast, and we felt it was a good way to enjoy it all the more.

Nothing fancy, but still fun.

We started with an impromptu date night to our local Applebee’s last Friday.

If you’ve seen the commercials, you know they do half-priced appetizers after 9:00.

We thought it would be fun to do a VERY late dinner (on a very long side note- I love the idea of late dinners. They seem so sophisticated and glamorous compared to our usual AARP early bird dinnertime. With that said, though, I am always famished early in the evening and could never make it to a 9:00 dinner without some major preplanning. I’m such a granny) and watch some of the OSU-TCU game.

Except…

We were both super hungry and ready to eat when we got there only to find out half price appetizers begin at 9:00 Monday through Thursday but 10:00 Friday through Sunday.

Real life.

The good news is that dinner worked out better for me! I ate far healthier ordering off the regular menu than the appetizer menu.

Turned out to be a great night! Albeit a super casual dinner in our comfy clothes, it still seemed “glamorous” since I made it to 9:00. 😊

So yeah...one checked off the list, more to go!

Annnnd we had another snake in our house

Real life guys.

We have a for sale sign in the house now, incase you’re wondering.

(Kidding...kind of)

This time, Will didn’t dilly-dally taking care of the snake.

It was promptly removed.

We’ll leave it at that.

Since we mentioned for sale signs...

You may remember, my parents live two doors down from me.

Only, at the end of September they sold their house and are moving up to the nesrby town where my sister lives.

I’ve taken it hard don’t want to get into it. Just mentioning it for posterity sake.  I’m also going to miss seeing Layla so much! It’s always been so nice having her so close so often.

So yeah- there’s that! Here’s to hoping the new neighbors don’t mind me using their better wifi… #awkward.

Mrs. Benko would be proud

Waaay back in the 19 hundred and 90s (haha), I took piano lessons.

Real life.

Yes, they had pianos back then.

Anyway, I loved it at first. My young brain soaked up the scales, show tunes, and silly songs. However when I got into junior high, I started to hate it.

It seemed like a drag. It was work. I never practiced.

One thing led to another, and I stopped.

Flash forward many years later.

When my parents moved, they offered to give my my old Clavinova, which I obliged.

Why do I feel this isn’t going to be like riding a bike?

It’s fried jello time ya’ll

Well friends, it’s fair time. The Oklahoma state fair just wrapped up, with the Texas State Fair around the corner. 

As usual, the menu is full of delicious fried concoctions that make my heart race just thinking about it.

Aaaaand they’re debuting veggie corn dogs this year, which I find intriguing.

Can we also discuss how iOS 10 is killing me?

I apologize to anyone I’ve texted in the the last two weeks. It’s been death by GIF. It’s like the junior high video game loving boy inside me has found an outlet in the form of annoying moving pictures to convey EVERYTHING!

Other things
The Lord has continued to impress some things on my heart to the point where I just have to say something, darn it. I plan on tackling those things in another post.

I didn’t even touch workouts or new music either, but I figure this is more than enough for a Thursday things. I suppose I can always do another one next week, yes? πŸ˜‰

My (Second) First Day

It started and ended at a Cool Greens in downtown Oklahoma City.

A fitting ending to my last day

Well, sort of.

In December 2013, I met a friend at Cool Greens for lunch. She’d recently taken a job downtown, and we took some time to catch up.

Unknown to anyone at the time, I had an interview scheduled right down the street.

At my dream company.

I wanted to scream it from the rooftops when we met for lunch that day, but I kept it to myself.

I interviewed the first week of January, and was offered the job in February.

In terms of a job, it was all I ever wanted. Among a handful of companies in Oklahoma envied by all, and highly competitive.

Every other Friday off, a doctor’s office onsite, a state of the art gym, beautiful amenities, completely innovative, and the best people around.

Farewell πŸ’—

However, leaving my then-current employer wasn’t completely easy either.

It was close to home, I liked the people, I had good benefits, and most importantly- I worked for the best.boss.ever.

Unfortunately, I had successfully burned myself out. I had seven weeks of vacation banked and never felt like I could take a day. I was ready for a change, but only at the right place.

And it happened.

In March 2014 I said goodbye to my friends of nearly six years and took the job at my dream company.

But not before my old company sent me off with a Vitamix.

I left there on a Friday and started on a Monday.

What was I thinking!? smile

Turns out, the company was everything I thought it would be, and more. Pinch me.

Seriously.

The Lord began preparing my heart for the move during the fall of 2013, and it was worth the wait.

I couldn’t believe I got to work there everyday. Everything was perfect.

Then, the bottom dropped in the oil market.

We nervously watched it go lower, and lower, and lower, hitting below $27 a barrel at the beginning of the year.

How did we get here so quickly?

It was grim, and we all knew it.

Previously, my company never had a layoff due to commodity pricing, but we knew it was probably inevitable.

In January, they announced what we all feared-a large scale layoff due to commodity pricing.

Have you ever been through something like that?

It takes an emotional toll on a person. As the newbie, I was convinced I would be let go.

Office chatter was tense. Each person had resigned themselves to the fact that they were on “the list” for reasons x,y, and z.

I trusted the Lord and spent much time on my knees in my closet, crying out to Him. Telling Him I would trust Him “when” it happened.

And then it happened.

Only, I was blessed enough to get to keep my job.

It’s funny how we can convince ourselves we know what God is doing, and then He up and surprises us.

Staying was a huge blessing, but in a way far differently than I anticipated.

After the layoffs, things were vey different. I quickly decided a few things I had ignored for a long time weren’t going to be as easy to ignore.

Skipping ahead a little, I began to pray about whether I was supposed to stay where I was.

I didn’t want to leave, but I continued to see evident signs that the Lord had another plan.

Through a series of His orchestrated hands, I reached out to a former coworker about a possible opportunity with a new company.

A conversation with him led to a conversation with my former boss, and when all was said and done, a position was created for me at my former company and I had the opportunity to return.

There was a lot of prayer and long conversations with Will in between, but for the sake of this post I think I’ve covered the gist.

I turned in my notice two weeks ago, and finished up work this week.

It was hard to leave because I truly loved where I was. However, I know the Lord was at work in these events.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned these last two years, it’s that trust and obedience in the Lord are beautiful things (but they’re not always easy!).

I know in my heart I am going where I’m supposed to be, but that doesn’t mean I won’t miss my new friends.

I bid farewell to my friends and coworkers Thursday. One of my friends took me out to Cool Greens for lunch that day.

I thought it was fitting, bringing everything to full circle.

A good way to close out one chapter and begin another.

I was so sad to leave my previous job in 2014, but as I drove off Thursday I was actually ok. I’m sad to leave friends, but no tears were shed and I honestly don’t feel that sad. I know I’m going where I’m supposed to.

That’s a good feeling.

I start my “second first day” Monday.

I was off Friday, and Will and I took the opportunity to make a quick trip to Perkins for pie and muffins.

Perkins

Because how else would you celebrate a new job when you’re an 87 year old living in a 30-something’s body?!

Exactly.

So yeah, big life changes. Again.

I wanted to capture everything here while it was fresh on my mind. I like having this space for things like this.

I also think I might check in a little more often than I have been, how about that!?

That’s it for now. Here’s to a good (second) first day! πŸ’—

Thieves in the Temple

We were at the Super Bowl.

The rainy one, where he played.

Britt&#x27;s Pics 078

Had I know how “epic” it truly was, I probably would have taken more pictures.

Like many of you, I grew up listening to Prince.

The world remains rocked about his death, outpouring reflective tweets, pictures, and posts.

Heartbroken over a musical genius.

Anguished about his greatness and the hole he will forever leave in the music industry.

My heart grieves his death from a completely different aspect.

I (obviously) didn’t know Prince.

I don’t know his heart, or who he was in his quiet moments.

I don’t know what he thought about before he went to sleep, or who he was when no one was watching.

Though he was a Jehovah’s Witness, who do not believe Jesus to be equal with God or able to atone for the sins of man, I don’t know if perhaps he did believe in Jesus. The true Prince of Peace.

I don’t know.

And so I grieve based solely on the fruits of what I do know.

Remembering life is short.

Remembering the things this world holds dear, that what they love as treasures, are so different than that which our Savior holds dear.

Remembering the things of this world shall pass away, but the Word of our God shall last forever.

That, for the most part, the movies, music, and trappings we enjoy will burn as chaff in His fire one day.

I don’t want to be remembered for my contributions in this fleeting world, no matter how great they may be (and trust me, I live a very small life and will never be esteemed as one who offered “brilliance").

I want to be remembered as a girl who loved God.

Who, despite my huge mistakes, was changed by His grace and truly, fully, wholeheartedly loved Him because of it. 

Who lived a life that was devoted to Him, and who left the souls of man forever changed for eternity because of it.

When I die one day, the world will not be full of saddened tweets about how I changed history.

In fact, in the grand scheme of the entire world, very few people will even know it happened.

I don’t want to change history.

I want to change eternity.

I don’t want to live for this moment.

I want to live forever.

So when I see the world grieving the loss of a musical giant, I grieve because they’re saddened over the wrong things.

I’m not saying it’s wrong to be sad, please don’t misunderstand. We all mourn the deaths of those we love.

It’s all about perspective.

One day we will stand before our Lord to give an account.

In spite of the fact everyone wants to believe we all worship the same God and just get to Him on different paths, there’s only one true God.

One true Path.

I realize these words probably don’t make sense to most.

However, for the few who know where I’m coming from, remember life is short.

May we not let the trappings of this life steal our eyes from our true Treasure.

To my fellow Christians, I implore you to live a life devoted to His work.

May we be more saddened over the loss of souls than music.

In keeping with Colossians 3, may we set our minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Perspective

Don’t know Him? Click here

33: Introverts Unite! (Quietly. In our own houses.)

I’m 33 today.

So am I technically still early 30s or have I officially moved into the dreaded “mid-30s?”

Don’t answer that.

As in years past, I wanted to take a moment today to share deep and meaningful (πŸ˜‰) life lessons I learned on the road from 32 to 33.

In all honesty, and as silly as it sounds, I really think I “grew up” and got to know myself better this past year.

It’s been a year of reflecting and trusting the Lord. Tossing away much of the useless nonsense that consumed my life for far too long.

It wasn’t an easy year, but it’s certainly been worth it. πŸ’—

1. I think that maybe (??) I’ve become more of an introvert in my old age.

True story.

Growing up as an army brat that moved tons, I never had a problem making friends and being heavily involved in heaps of activities. I loved people, and I loved doing “stuff.”

Still, I’ve was always been fairly quiet and timid (unless I’m among my trusted “tribe"). I’ve noticed over the last couple of years that my preference is for more intimate, less chaotic engagements.

I still love people, and I still (occasionally) love doing “big” stuff...but in smaller doses, and with my favorite people rather than the whole farm. 😊

So yeah, kind of a big revelation I discovered this past year. Ha!

2. Triscuits are the jam.

Yes.

Go buy a box of the cracked black pepper & olive oil, or the dill ones.

Once you buy them you’ve pretty much surrendered to the fact that they have to be in your kitchen cabinet ALWAYS.

3. Social media is overrated.

I know this isn’t the consensus, especially for people my age and younger, but seriously- for me, it’s true.

I enjoy taking huge breaks from the rat race that is social media (see #1 above).

I often use Lent as an opportunity to disconnect, and find my usage continues to say very minimal afterward.

It makes me more present and aware of the moment.

Of actual life in the flesh.

Of all the little moments before my eyes I often miss when I’m buried in my phone.

No lie- I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked up from my phone and can’t remember the last 10 minutes of real life around me.

Yes, I completely agree there’s a time and place. There are so many people dear to me that I can connect with through social media when I normally wouldn’t see them except major holidays.

I also see the value in social media (um, after all this is a blog post), but I also see so much more value in investing in the life right in front of me.

All about balance.

4. Silence is golden.

(See #1 and #3)

I find I often busy myself with noise.

The radio is always on.

The TV is always on.

I’m on my phone.

I’m constantly distracted.

I can’t focus and hear the voice of God.

When I finally intentionally quiet myself and step away from the craziness of life, it feels wrong sometimes.

Because I feel as though something should be done. That I need to be acting or moving or doing.

It feels unnatural because we’re constantly faced with stimulation.

Yet, when I force myself to declutter my mind and sit in the stillness of God’s word and actually listen, I find Him. I hear His Truth and desires.

It takes focus, but He promises He rewards those who earnestly and diligently seek Him. And it’s worth it.

5. Marie Callender’s Cherry Crunch Pie will make you hate yourself.

Seriously.

Don’t do it.

It’s so dang good, and you’re going to loathe loving it so much.

6. I enjoy at-home workouts as much as gym ones.

I suppose I always have, however given the choice, I’d always given the edge to the gym.

I love the versatility of at-home workouts in the privacy of my own living room.

Who cares if I’m sweating like a pig and don’t smell like roses!?

Boz and Lucy sure don’t mind. Haha

7. Things don’t go as planned.

Obvs.

But seriously, I’ve been extremely blessed my entire life and had been shielded from a lot of heartache.

The Lord has been doing lots of pruning on my heart in this season of trials, and it hasn’t always been easy or enjoyable.

Nonetheless, I can look back on this last year and consider all my plans and see how the Lord has steered our life in such a different direction (see Proverbs 16:9).

Not as I planned, yet I can still see His hand in it all and have peace.

8. Clean your shower every week.

Seriously. I know you probably hate it as much as I do, but DO IT already.

As we both know, the longer we wait, the worse it gets.

Need motivation?

Mix one cup of vinegar and one tablespoon of blue Dawn dish soap in a spray bottle and soak your shower with it.

Let it sit a few hours and then wipe.

Game changer.

You’re welcome.

9. Truth matters.

Unpopular, but true.

We want to live in this huge gray area so as not to offend anyone, but the fact of the matter is- you’re always going to offend someone. I firmly believe there’s a way to hold the line without being a jerk, which is what the media seems to portray anytime one “side” disagrees with another.

Truth counts, so own it and stand firm in your convictions and dialogue in love, don’t yell and flail in hate.

10. I’ve become a full-blown carnivore again.

Real life.

Well… Sort of.

I still aim for more of a veggie friendly diet, but I’ve also been adding chicken and fish to my diet 1-2 times a week.

Plus I pretty much can’t turn down grilled Chick-Fil-A nuggets.

They pretty much sent me to the edge, and it didn’t take much more to jump thereafter. Ha!

Brittny Flint-3 years old with weird chicken

11. Deep condition your hair.

And if it’s super dry like mine, do it every time you wash it. I used to think deep treatments were once a month type things until I started doing them twice a week.

Game changer. I’ll never go back now!

12. I have friends who genuinely care.

Y’all, I am so thankful for my inner circle of friends. I have been uplifted so many times this year by their love and encouragement.

13. This life isn’t mine to live.

This is the biggest lesson.

It’s something I’ve known as a Christian in theory, but have finally begun to behold.

I’m so done with trying to live my “best life now” with no consideration for standing before Jesus one day.

I want to be selfless and give more. Care more. See people more. Act more. Love more. Stand more.

Not for me or some meaningless cause, but for Jesus and Truth. Even when it’s unpopular.

I’m so done wasting my life and want 33 (and beyond) to be one of surrender and awe.

To see what God can do if I’d simply get out of the way.

So yeah.

Streams of consciousness from my heart to yours.

Here’s to 33. πŸ’—

33

Heart (and Mohs) Surgery- and a real life update

Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.

Which is simultaneously comforting and terrifying.

After all, we are reminded in Jeremiah that the heart is deceitful above all things, and the Lord searches and examines its depths.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what God sees when He looks at my heart.

Do I spend as much time on the inside of the cup as I do the outside?

Verse

I had Mohs surgery on my face to remove some potentially cancerous cells this past Wednesday.

MOHs surgery day one. Glamorous.

I was a wreck the week after my pre-op and as I googled the surgery.

A word to the wise- don’t google worrisome things you’re facing in life.

Seriously.

You will lose sleep.

It’s pretty much a guarantee the most extreme cases or situations will be the first to come up in the search and will ruin you.

I was a wreck because I’m a woman in my 30s. While my best years are yet to be, let’s face it, I’m not shiny faced and 20 anymore. Makeup is a necessity these days and wrinkles continue to appear out of nowhere.

And now I have to worry about basal cells so early!?

The night after my pre-op (which was over two months before the surgery!) I googled and cried and googled and cried some more.

This went on for about a week each evening.

Will, dear Will, was no help.

He’s a guy.

To him there was a problem (possible basal cells) and a solution (the removal of said cells).

Yes, he’s right, but any woman knows there’s more that meets the eye. The worry of all the new spots they’ll probably find in the coming years (a result of my stupid decision to tan during my teens). A giant scar on my face.

One of my dear friends and prayer warriors completely got it. We cried together a lot that week and prayed even more. Her prayers were completely beautiful, true, and anointed. She reminded me of my value in Christ and that He bottles my tears and works for good no matter what.

Verse

Her godly prayers strengthened me so very much and the holy spirit used them to bring such peace during the painfully long time between my pre-op and surgery.

Surgery encouragement πŸ’—πŸ™

I had a of of time to think about my heart condition during the two months leading up to surgery.

There’s so much gunk and yuckiness deep in the depths.

Pride, jealousy, worry, entitlement.

Ugh.

Untitled

Not only was I going to battle surgery and a scar on the outside, but I also needed some heart surgery on the inside too.

I’d like to tell you the inside surgery has been easier than the outside surgery, but I’d be lying.

It hurts to surrender to Christ.

Not because of Him- His burden is light.

But because of my own sinful nature and desire to rule myself and pursue my own desires.

Just as the doctor stripped away a layer of the bad cells on my nose Wednesday, the Lord has begun to strip away my own internal heart cancer layer by layer.

Pride, worry, spitefulness… The list goes on and on.

I can’t hide the scar on my face, it will always be there.

Two days post surgery

I also can’t hide my hurts before the Lord, He searches the depth of my heart and sears my soul with the promise He is ever present.

Just as my doctor took care to stitch me back together, the Great Physician, my Jehovah Rapha, heals my heart. He prunes away the things that dishonor Him, and fills me with more of His goodness.

My scar will take time to heal and will leave a daily reminder of what transpired. In the same way, my heart certainly also bears the scars of a heart broken by my own sinfulness and horrid decisions, only to be stitched together and healed by a God big enough to restore even the biggest of messes.

I’m not happy I had to go through this experience, but I am thankful for the reminder of where I’ve been, where I am, and where I’m heading as I pursue Christ.

To our continued healing, inside and out. πŸ’—

***
On a much lighter note, I’ve taken several days off to recover and have not done a single thing.

Not even kidding.

It’s been the most uneventful and lazy few days of my entire life. Will and I are surprisingly really good at being completely worthless.

I don’t think that’s a good thing…

I’ve only gone out to see my mom a couple times (my sister and Layla stopped by too!). I also went through a drive through twice, but that’s it.

I have church tomorrow and was a little apprehensive about going at first. You should have seen the awfulness of Will and I trying to appropriately bandage my face. πŸ˜‚

Attempt number one
Bandage attempt #1 πŸ˜‚ MOHs surgery day three

Attempt number two

Attempt #2 just as awful Mohs surgery day three

πŸ˜‚

At this point I was having a complete meltdown. Thankfully Will went to the drawing board and engineered attempt number three, which was much improved over the previous two.

Third times a charm

I get my stitches out Wednesday and am so ready! Thankfully attempt three made me feel slightly less garish.

I’m sure Will would agree- this staycation has been incredibly dull, but it’s still been nice to be together and heal up.

So there you have it, not only a devo but also a real life update.

Thanks for listening. More to come. πŸ’—

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! 

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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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