10 REALLY SHALLOW REASONS I’M EXCITED TO NOT BE PREGNANT

besides the obvious (and totally NOT shallow) reason of having my baby girl in my arms as opposed to my stomach, there are lots of reasons I’m super pumped to no longer be pregnant.

several of them aren’t shallow at all. being a family of three, getting to know this amazing little person, seeing my husband become a father…

and while I know that motherhood isn’t all sunshine and roses (I’ve seen the contents of a diaper, y’all), there’s so much good about it!

but today…? I’m celebrating the shallow & silly reasons why I’m excited for the next stage in this journey 😉

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10 REALLY SHALLOW REASONS I’M EXCITED TO NOT BE PREGNANT Continue reading “10 REALLY SHALLOW REASONS I’M EXCITED TO NOT BE PREGNANT”

TO THE SPICY, AND THE STEADY, AND THE SKEPTICAL // WE NEED ALL OF US

“never touch anything with half of your heart.” // unknown
that quote could easily be the banner over my life. because this girl is sick and tired of being told to half-heart things. to be fair, I have never been very good at it… sometimes to my detriment. I live fully alive. I am all-in or all-out. I knew I was going to marry my husband after our first date. I drop everything if someone needs me… and sometimes if they don’t. I am viciously loyal, even if the sentiment doesn’t go both ways. If you want me, you’ve got all of me. if you don’t, you’ve lost me.

my soul is spicy and expansive and always on full-throttle… honestly, most of the time it’s something I can’t even help and don’t even realize I’m doing. it simply is. and I have come to realize that there are others like me, other spicy and expansive full-throttle-ers, whose purpose in life is to make the world uncomfortable enough through our vibrant love and terrifying all-in-ness, that it will move mountains.

see (as much as we’d like to think otherwise) our spicy, vibrant hearts are perfectly suited & strengthened for the bearing of burdens and voicing of injustices, but aren’t always built to withstand the lifting of entire mountains. we cry out and call attention and walk alongside, but we need help to elevate a church, raise a nation, change a world. we are prophets and prophetesses, but we need the kings and the priests and the armies to rise up and take their perfectly suited place by our side. we cannot be all things- no one is all things except our Jesus. we are made to work in tandem; we are meant to function as a unified family.

in fact, I’ve come to realize there several kinds of us that make up the world- and each of us has a part to play that we will be absolutely held accountable for. we each have a desperate and grave responsibility in this fight for Jesus-like compassion, justice, equality, and basic human dignity. none of us are excused- we simply each need to find our place and our way to be the change… in the perfect and precise way our hearts and minds were made to do so.


so, to the spicy & all-in heart: keep crying out, keep bearing the burdens, keep advocating, keep standing in the gate and prophesying over dry bones and keep being the voice crying out in the desert to make straight the way of the Lord. do not give up when you are discouraged- I know you suffer from burnout and are tempted to wilt under discouragement and rejection, but don’t do it. this cause is too important. love matters too much. your role in this story is slowly & brilliantly taking effect with every stirred soul. you are the ones marching in the streets and posting on facebook and organizing rallies and speaking at conventions and vibrantly standing up for your affected friends & neighbors. you’re the emotional whirlwind that sweeps the world off its feet and teaches it to love again. we need you. Continue reading “TO THE SPICY, AND THE STEADY, AND THE SKEPTICAL // WE NEED ALL OF US”

UNICORNS, LLAMAS & HABITS OF A “BAD WIFE”

y’all, I’ve tried.

I’ve tried to be the magical unicorn of marital perfection. unfortunately, after several attempts at the trophy, I wound up more like the wifely version of a gimpy llama. meh. sorry, babe. (xoxo)

but for real… not all of us are unicorns. #amiright

especially this gal.

I’d like to think I’m a pro after 2 1/2 years of marriage *wink* (and honestly our relationship is a beautifully rock-solid & giddy part of my life), but… who am I kidding. mostly what I’ve learned through experience is like… REAL DIFFERENT from what I was told before we got married.

the things I’ve learned in this wonderfully messy hands-on experiment of loving another human being have been contrary to what I thought it would be, unique to what the majority of people told me it would be, and so much freakin’ better than anything I could have imagined.

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honestly, most of what I’ve learned through experience, in contrast to what I was informed by countless others that wifehood would be like… is how to be a bad wife.

the things I was told would be expected of me, the things I was told make up the DNA of a “good wife” (whatever that means)… well, I don’t seem to have most of those things. I don’t seem to have the attention to detail, the naturally submissive nature, the perfectly clean home, the desire to let myself disappear into a new role.

it seems that those of us women with strong personalities or deep passions or huge dreams or “other” than the average stereotypical wife are left out of the equation. it seems that, according to tradition & expectation, we’re doomed to be “bad” wives. I’ve seen really phenomenal women shut down because they’re too loud or too independent or too opinionated or too not-feminine or too unemotional or too spontaneous or too whatever-doesn’t-fit-our-perfect-model-of-wifelyness. and while all of our qualities have the potential to overrun us and define us in unhealthy ways, there is no personality trait that is inherently bad or in any way disqualifies a woman from being an outstanding human being… let alone a fantastic wife.

well, if that’s you, then firstly… you’re in good company, because we are all different, and the way we love our husbands SHOULD look different.
and secondly… here is your personal guide for how to be a bad wife. possibly the worst 😉

yup. here’s the proof of just how bad a wife I am.

Continue reading “UNICORNS, LLAMAS & HABITS OF A “BAD WIFE””

37 WEEKS PREGNANT // BUMPDATE

I can honestly say that I didn’t expect to be writing this post.

just 6 weeks ago we entered the hospital with my contractions less than 5 minutes apart to find I was at high-risk for pre-term labor, and were afraid we’d have a teeny preemie on our hands; in the 4-5 weeks that followed I was on a modified bed rest to make sure our Iola Grace stayed safely put until she was grown enough to be healthy out in the real world. (you can read the whole story here)

just before Christmas we were in the hospital yet again with more concerns, but (yet again), we were sent home and labor continued to hold off.

the pain has been excruciating. the emotional strain (and yeah even trauma) has been real. the heightened anxiety has been exhausting. and the contractions (now consistently every 10 minutes or less for the past few weeks) have been frustrating.

with each doctor appointment, my doctor expressed the doubt, but hope, that Io would stay put until the end of January. each appointment confirms that I am indeed getting closer to active labor by the day… but our little love has officially made it to term, which we never thought would happen, and we are both so happy & so impatient. (especially this mama who has been in early labor for 5+ weeks!!)

keep us in your prayers! mama is completely worn out and exhausted from the pain.
our girl Io is still looking perfect (as usual!), if a wee on the bit small side. ❤
dad is super ready to see his baby girl… and to have his other girl be less miserable. 😉

we’re a hot mess over here, but we are hanging on! this sweet little soul has been desperately waited upon & joyfully suffered for. we can’t wait to see her beautiful face…

happy 37 weeks of life, Io girl. we love you! 

YOU DON’T NEED MORE FAITH… THAT’S IMPOSSIBLE, ANYWAY

ever had someone tell you that you “just need to have more faith”?

aside from being kind of judgy & just plain unhelpful (that’s a blog post for an entirely different time), it’s biblically inaccurate and impossible. yeah, you did actually read that correctly. 😉 and there’s an overflowing amount of freedom that comes with no longer striving for this imaginary amount of faith you have to reach in order to no longer be deemed “less than” or “not enough” by humanity.

I mean, let’s take it back and actually look at scripture, okay?

“For I say, through the grace that was given me… think reasonably, as God has apportioned to each person a measure of faith.”
romans 12:3

did you catch that? yeah, you’ve already been given every ounce of faith you need, planted deep in your soul since the moment you said “yes” to healing. it’s already been measured out, and Divine Love didn’t shortchange you. I promise.

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you don’t need “more faith”, because Jesus doesn’t deprive us of what our souls need.
you don’t need “more faith”, because you weren’t haphazardly tossed together.
you don’t need “more faith”, because the power of grace didn’t run out before it got to you.
you don’t need “more faith”, because Divine Love doesn’t allow you to suffer meaninglessly.
you don’t need “more faith”, because He isn’t dangling it in front of your nose, then handing it to someone else. Continue reading “YOU DON’T NEED MORE FAITH… THAT’S IMPOSSIBLE, ANYWAY”

FINDING YOUR TRIBE // 4 WAYS

sometimes finding your people is just really tough.

I feel like especially as an adult, and as an introvert, it’s easier to get wrapped up in work, sleep, me-time, and chilling with my hubby… and trying to “make friends” just seems too hard and at the same time feels almost juvenile and something at which I’m terribly out of practice.

please tell me I can’t be the only one!

but at the same time, I crave those deep, meaningful friendships with people who just get it. I have that desperate desire for satisfying & inspiring conversation, for long coffee shop chats on rainy days, for those people that make up my life’s cheering section and stick around in silent solidarity when I have ALL the doubts & questions…

and, so slowly, I’ve begun to build that tribe, find my people, create that community. it’s taken a long time and a lot of work and I’m nowhere near complete, but there’s a slow consistency to it that gives me traction.

I thought I’d share with you the four main things I need to keep in mind as I’ve begun (and continue) to build my tribe ❤

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expect the unexpected
I figured I’d start with my favorite 😉 right now, my tribe consists of the strangest, most inconvenient few ladies. and it’s wonderful. we don’t live near one another. I’ve met them online, known them for years, or befriended them out of awkward situations. my tribe looks nothing like what you might think… and yours probably won’t either. that’s just how it works. give your tribe permission to come together- whoever & however they are. be open to the reality that the people who are meant to be yours may not look like what you’d pictured. be okay with long-distance, with the ones who are older or younger, with a tribe as diverse and wild and beautiful as the women in this world. Continue reading “FINDING YOUR TRIBE // 4 WAYS”

JESUS & A NEVER-RUNS-OUT, CONTROVERSIAL KIND OF LOVE

there are certain portions of scripture that never fail to take my breath away.
moments I read about that leave me shivering and goose-bumped at the beauty.
they’re the ones that stick with me and start to shape the rebuilding of my heart.

I love peeling open the pages of my Bible and finding Life and Love and Truth in there. the gospel of John calls Jesus Himself the Word, and I understand that with greater depth of feeling when it’s as though the words of Scripture absorb His presence. there’s a holiness in there, in that sacred space of sweet community with the Divine, that beckons off our shoes & calls us closer to a fuller and sweeter understanding.

one of those breathless moments of Divine presence happens in particular for me in John 8… and I really really want to share that moment with you because I think it’s crucial in our understanding of who this Jesus is.
what this Way is that we walk.
where our lives are meant to intersect and mesh.

because Jesus is never a neutral party. Jesus never compromises. Jesus is all-encompassing fullness and a great & holy force of grace. Jesus is always acting, always moving, always guiding.

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Jesus-love is a messy, holy, and yeah… controversial… kind of love.
and the breadth of it is wild & bold.
there’s enough for all of us & there will keep on being enough-
there is no shortage.
there is no scarcity. Continue reading “JESUS & A NEVER-RUNS-OUT, CONTROVERSIAL KIND OF LOVE”

MY DAILY ESSENTIAL OILS ROUTINE… AND WHY THEY’RE WORTH THE INVESTMENT (FROM A SKEPTIC)

yup, I’ll admit it, y’all…this is a totally, completely, 100% biased post (heehee!) but I’m not paid to write it… I just happen to love this topic! 😉

you see, in this house, essential oils are our jam- we use these bad boys for eeeeverything (and I mean everything.), and they’ve totally changed the game for us when it comes to overall wellness. I’m talking HUGE changes in our anxiety levels, easier & deeper sleep at night (for a gal with insomnia!), colds & sicknesses nipped in the bud, and better concentration & inspiration at both work and play.

even my super-skeptical hubby is a HUGE FAN of them now, and he uses them as much (if not more!!!) than I do. no, really. his peeps in the church band are always asking him why he smells so good! Haha!

it took me & J over a year to finally take the leap and join the Young Living team, and I seriously wish we’d done it sooner. he was skeptical of oils in general, and I was skeptical if it was worth the initial start-up cost of  $160 to purchase my starter kit.

we had SO MANY QUESTIONS.
how often would we actually use them?
would they actually work for us?
how quickly would we run out and have to re-stock… and how much money would that look like?
what would we even use them for- there’s so many, it’s overwhelming!
is it really worth the investment?

so we purchased one or two things here and there, and did lots of research, and slowly our eyes opened as we started to see the difference even just our three little bottles of essential oils were making.

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so, I’m no stranger to skepticism when it comes to essential oils! if that’s you- you’re in good company, my friend 🙂 in this post, I aim to help you work through some of that skepticism: I’ll share my daily oils routine, as well as some thoughts on WHY they work, and how, for us, they’ve become an invaluable part of our daily life… in just a few short weeks! Continue reading “MY DAILY ESSENTIAL OILS ROUTINE… AND WHY THEY’RE WORTH THE INVESTMENT (FROM A SKEPTIC)”

THIS BLOG PROBABLY ISN’T FOR YOU.

sometimes I get just the most wonderful responses.

seriously.

sometimes these emails appear in my inbox (or the messages pop in my facebook page), and I just cry as I read your stories of how you get it.

how you needed to hear this, needed to find that place of belonging, needed to know someone else understood, needed to see those feelings in writing, needed that push to be brave, needed to hear a different perspective, needed to hear someone to call out your chains for what they were.

this is what I live for, you guys. it’s why I keep writing, even on the days when I feel like it’s to an empty void.

I treasure your encouragement- I save those emails and print off those messages, and I clutch them close when the liar says my voice is irrelevant and my efforts are useless and my story is a disqualifier. yep- your voice is how Divine Love speaks and how Jesus pours out grace over me. and it’s THE. FRIGGIN. BEST.

you are my community. you are my crazy, wild tribe, and I LOVE you for it because you embrace the messiness that is our humanity and reconcile it with grace upon grace without feeling the need to measure it or compare it or cast it off.

it’s honestly just so beautiful. keep on with that, peeps. ❤

…and then I get just the worst responses.

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because of this blog, I’ve found community and encouragement and life-giving freedom that I wouldn’t trade for anything.

I’ve also found angry people, those who don’t care about actually discussing differences, but are more interested in tearing down me and the beautiful souls who have found a home in this blog.  Continue reading “THIS BLOG PROBABLY ISN’T FOR YOU.”

THERE’S ROOM AT THE TABLE, AND YOU ARE INVITED

It was a hard decision… choosing what my very first post of 2017 would be. and then, rather suddenly, it wasn’t actually difficult at all. allow me to explain…

if you are familiar with the Untidy Grace Manifesto, which I posted here last fall, or if you’ve read the meet moriah page, you’ll know the way my heart beats. the very vibration of my bones is for you, for my people, to know that you belong here, that your journey is invaluable, and that your becoming is the most important thing you could ever invest in, because your becoming is all about redemption and reconciliation and healing- for you and for the whole world.
and so this post, born of that heartache-y vibration, is my love letter to you, dear soul. let these words be the ones that ring in your ears and echo until 2017 has come and gone and you have lived wild and holy and brave…

there is always room at the table. and if there isn’t more room at your table, you’re at the wrong table.

friend, here’s a shock for you: you are invited. 

in a space throbbing with the ever-changing “you’re in“, and “you’re out” rhetoric, and the chaotic drumbeat of a song you never quite learned how to dance to (but somehow everyone else did), there is a table to which you are- to which you’ve always been– invited.

there is a table where the under-valued and the stumbling misfits and the mentally ill and the cast-offs and the theologically inept and the trying-but-failing and the battered and broken sit together and healing happens.
belonging happens.
Jesus happens.

there is a table without a dress code and with no prerequisite except for coming, fully human, ferociously hungry, as you are.

there is a table where your story is heard, your journey is honored, and your small piece of humanity is woven proudly into the unfolding, scandalous drama of grace.

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some pretend they own the table (and the invitations, too), but if they’re honest, they felt uncomfortable there and made their own. their table is not The Table. and if you have been excluded from their table, you can rest assured you don’t want to be there anyway. Continue reading “THERE’S ROOM AT THE TABLE, AND YOU ARE INVITED”