Dealing with loss on the holidays

Well this year didn’t quite go as planned. The day started off storming.

Im talking thunder, lightning, torrential raining. The whole works. So a pool day was completely out of the picture. Little man goes to his nannies house on Tuesdays so while he played with her and her little one I went with one of my best friends and thrifted. Not before getting my Starbucks B+W Mocha though. The stormy weather and coffee in hand reminded me of fall and Ill be the first to admit I considered turning on christmas music. (Don’t hate me. Im just being honest)

So I do have to confess while I am HUGE on bargain shopping I haven’t thrifted in probably years. I am actually shocked at this considering I grew up thrifting. It use to be one of my favorite things. However it can be SO HARD for me to hold back and not buy everything. Now especially with having a little one. I usually go through a process of putting things in my cart, staring at them. Then five aisles over realizing no I don’t actually love that. Even if it is $1 or $.050.

So what I didn’t know about fourth of July was that it is a HUGE day for people who do thrift. Why? 50% off EVERYTHING. I pulled up ten mins before they opened with the parking lot pretty much empty and within 15 minutes the parking lot was half full of thrifters! I had no idea!! Does anyone else here thrift on the fourth?? Well I am SO GLAD I went!! I was able to find some super cute hoodies, and button ups for little man. That brown jacket you see in the cart I scored for $.99, a denim skirt for $2, and some jeans I am going to attempt to make into cutoff shorts. If the shorts turn out well I will do a DIY on them.



After I picked up little man we went home and just hung out at home. Because it was fourth of July I put his little outfit on simply for the sake of pictures. Cause come on you have to document this cuteness!! 

While we made the most of the day and he has no idea what he ‘missed out on’ with a pool day, bbq, smores, and fireworks theres a part of my heart that genuinely grieves. See fourth of July was one of the bigger family holidays in my family. My mom loved it, we would go to the beach with my grandparents, parents, and cousins. We would explore the beaches, eat to much watermelon and stay up late watching fireworks.

With the passing of my mom and my grandparents holidays are hard. But its honestly harder when I cannot participate in them. Because when we can do holidays I feel like I am able to continue the tradition of what those who are gone left behind. So today was hard. I wanted to be able to continue the traditions that my mom and grandma loved. I wanted to be in situations that reminded me of their laughter, and jokes. The inside jokes. To be honest this was honestly probably one of the hardest holidays to date since there passing because of this.



I would love to hear from others who have dealt, or are dealing with this!

Hope you all had a wonderful fourth. Stay safe out there!





Its all about mom today: Living for something more

Two years ago mom took her last breath here on earth. If you knew my mom you would know that I am pretty much her twin. Not only do we look similar but when it comes to mindsets, and behaviorisms we are IDENTICAL. This goes for our strengths and weaknesses. Over the last two years since my mom has passed I have grown so much. I consider it the silver lining in her death.  I believe from the bottom of my heart that God is MORE THAN ABLE to bring life out of death.

My growth is due to her passing and to getting married. During her bouts with cancer I watched her hold onto some of her insecurities, fears, and weaknesses (she eventually let down alot of her walls and forgave). On the flipside I also saw her maintain her servant heart, her  devotion to Christ, and her love. My moms greatest strengths and weaknesses’ are my greatest strengthens and weakness with a dash of my dad in there (ie: Crazy eccentric)

The first year of grieving my moms death I was in shock, denial, grief, and depression (you don’t realize it at the time because I slowly started withdrawing and I’m an introvert). At the beginning of last year I had an encounter with the presence of God that set me on a path to begin opening up my heart again, choosing to really live, and having hope again. Something I had lost since losing my mom.

I began to feel hope in a tangible way. I began smiling again. I began living and dreaming.

I talk about all of this candidly because I know there are others that have experienced, and/or are experiencing this very thing right now. I have always said that I will take whatever comes my way no matter how hard, or how wonderful if it means I will have a testimony to share with others to help set them free. I have never changed my stance on this even with all the death and loss I have encountered in my life.

If you or someone you know has lost a family member to cancer I want to dare you to dream again. To hope again. To live for something more again.

There are so many factors that have helped me to dream and hope again.  One of the first things that helped me begin to live again was regaining the hope I had lost. I had lost so much of myself without even realizing it until I began feeling hope again. As I began feeling flickers of life, love, and real energy I realized just how sad and numb I had been the previous year.

I began thinking about the things that I once loved doing and started trying to do them again. I want to challenge you to do the same. You will probably have no desire to do it but I want you to just try it. Once a week try it again, or try something different.  Just don’t quit on trying.

I found this helped me to remember who I was.  (Things I did to help remember who I was: sketching, reading (I stopped reading after mom died) books, reading blog articles on loss, talk with my husband and close friends about the pain, start drawing up plans for the next couple years- I am a visionary, without vision I really do perish. Another thing that ties in with being a visionary was finding people on instagram that inspire me and following them. Being inspired is a very powerful thing. I am thankful for social media there is so much life to be had from it if you are able to detach from comparison.)

Some other things that really helped me was working out and changing my diet. I was so lethargic and not health focused that I felt like I was a year or two away from having some major health issues. Might I remind you again skinny does NOT mean healthy. Me and the hubby started working out together, we would go play tennis together, I would go swim in the pool. I just started moving again.

Endorphins are pretty amazing.


Once I started getting moving again we start eating better. Not all at once, but one month at a time. I remember seeing a suggestion from a nutrionist that I follow on instagram that said ‘today add 3 vegetables to your dinner’. I thought to myself, THREE?!? We don’t even eat three vegetables a day let alone every week. That’s when it clicked for me that I needed to get us back on track. (My momma taught me way better – we NEVER had junk food and she had an actual hatred for McDonalds and soda) Now we do have at least three veggies everyday (typically) thanks to juicing and me cooking healthier options and I have energy again. I almost forgot how good it felt to be filled up by food. Not stuffed and lethargic from junk “food” and soda.

Another thing that helped me was Young Living Oils. Don’t worry I am not about to try and sell them to you. It drives me UP THE WALL when people message me about it. haha. I have a friend that I buy mine from and she’s amazing and gives me my space. At this point we only use peace and calming oil. We apply it to our feet at night and it helps me sleep through the night soundly and I am able to wake in the morning completely alert. (if you are interested in buying them I can direct you to my gal as I have no desire to sell them)

The last thing that has really helped is writing. When my moms health went downhill the second time I stopped writing. Not on purpose, just in the busyness of getting engaged, my grandpa passing, getting married, my photography business, my FT job I was stretched way to thin. I began writing in my journal, on the blog…not consistently but enough that my heart began really wanting to write again.


And here I am…

I am so thankful for the Lords hand in my life and He has seen me through every hardship and fear. I declared to my husband that this year I wanted to live free without fear. For the last couple years I allowed fear to dictate my actions. No more. I am learning to live life to the fullest ONE DAY AT A TIME.

Hope this encouraged you and if your mom is still living PLEASE give her a couple minutes or hours of your time today and remind her of how thankful you are for her. There really is no one like a mom.