Thursday, March 27, 2014

A message to single moms

Being single can be tough. Being a single MOM can feel downright impossible. Especially when it comes to dating. So I'm going to tell all the single mamas out there, the very words I've needed to hear myself at times: you are worthy. Believe it, because it's true. 

It can be hard trying to be optimistic and hopeful about finding the one, when you're worried about how others may view you. Sometimes you might feel like only a certain 'type' of guy could possibly understand or like you, such as fellow single parents, divorced, or emotionally damaged men. And while these men can be absolutely great to create a beautiful relationship with, DON'T limit yourself! When you see a cute guy, DON'T immediately think, 'he would never like me if he knew I had kids.' You may feel guilty about your past or judged or misunderstood. But often, you're the one who's doing the judging.

The first step toward being loved is loving yourself. Stop judging yourself and feeling like you are worth less than the single non-parent women out there. You aren't worth less; you are worth more. You are worth two parents in one! Sure, not every guy will understand this, but you deserve just as much love as anyone else, and anyone can love you, even that hot dude you like to stalk, you know the one. 

Love yourself, treat yourself like the beautiful creature you are. Buy yourself flowers. Make yourself an extravagant dinner, even when your kids aren't home to cook for; cook your favorite meal for YOU. Get pampered. Experience beauty. Dress nice, even if no one sees you. Or dress like a cozy slob, if that makes you feel more pampered and special! Take some time to take care of you. Being mentally healthy and full of love can also make you a more loving, happy mother.

Another good step toward being loved? Love God. I know it sounds cheesy, and when I'm hurting and lonely, it's hardly any comfort to hear, "don't worry, God loves you." It makes me want to shout, "of course God loves me, but what I want is human intimacy!" But when you are ready to get out of your pit of despair, God IS there with all the resources you need and plenty of loving guidance if you simply reach out. Loving God can give you purpose and hope. And knowing God truly loves you, has a plan for you, and will never abandon you (no matter how certain situations can feel for a time) makes it easier to forgive and love yourself.

That's the key, that's always the key; love. Love yourself, love others. Judge others less. Treat people the way you would want to be treated...including YOU! Speak kind words to and about yourself. Dare to hope. Dare to believe all the hot single dudes think you're cute too. There are plenty of douche bag guys out there who run from single moms, and by all means, scare them away! But love yourself, see your worth, and that truly awesome guy will see it too. But if you keep talking down to yourself, you'll keep settling for dudes who don't deserve you.

You are worthy of love, the best love, the most profound, magnificent love. 

You are worthy.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

{Gratitude} March 2014

I am so grateful for the superhuman emotional strength God has blessed me with. Actually, I don't know if I can call it strength; it's more like resiliency. 

I don't know if I'm strong; When my heart breaks, I fall apart. When life doesn't go the way I hoped it would, I fall apart. When my dreams are crushed, I fall apart. I fall apart, I cry, I mourn, I ache. I obsess over what went wrong. I wonder what I could have done differently. I wonder if there is something wrong with me. I wonder if i should ever open my heart again, or if it wouldn't be better to shut people out. I think about giving up on my dreams.

Then I get back up and start again.

As soon as I'm tired of feeling like absolute garbage, I try to climb out of the dark places. I pray for the strength to make it through troubled times. I pray for God's help and comfort. I pray for the ability to choose happiness. And then I choose happiness. It starts with a simple statement: I choose happiness. I say it over and over. I start to feel at ease. I start to believe it. Sooner or later, I start to actually feel it.

And then I'm elated. Life is beautiful again.

I'm so grateful for this emotional resiliency. I'm grateful that my heart is big enough and strong enough to open up over and over no matter how many times it is crushed. I am so grateful for all the lessons I learn from every hurt and set back, and how transformed I can become, should I choose to embrace it. I'm grateful for my optimism; that experience has made me stronger, not jaded. 

I am so grateful for this life, for all of the experiences. I am grateful for the path I am on, even though it can be hard sometimes. Being a single mom isn't something I would have chosen for myself. Being unmarried at 30 isn't something I ever expected. Once I realized I wanted kids, I never imagined I would have any setbacks to starting the family I wanted. But this is the life I have, and there is beauty in it. My life is still so full of possibility. I may not have the exact life I had always imagined, but I have a great life, and it is sure to be unique and fulfilling.

My relationship with my daughter is great and growing. My relationship with God is deepening. My understanding of myself is clearer. I'm opening my heart to friends more. I'm being friendlier to strangers. I'm getting better at generosity. I still have dreams of meeting The One and starting a family, but there is plenty to focus on and enjoy in the meantime. And marriage and family is by no means an end; it's an entirely new and often difficult journey. When it's time for me to embark on that journey, I'm sure my path will take me there.

Thank you God for this incredible life!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

DIY kids' art display

I'd like to share this quick and easy DIY project I did to display November's very first water color paintings in a fun, artistic way!
November had just started learning how to water color. They were so cute, I needed some awesome way to display them! 

This was so simple, all it took was: ribbon, push pins, and little clothespins. 
I already had the ribbon lying around, so I tacked it up with push pins, just giving the ribbon a little slack so it drapes down a bit. I bought the clothes pins at target in the scrapbooking section, I'm sure you could find all kinds of similar ones at a craft store. You could even buy plain ones and paint and decorate them!
There you go, easy peasy and cute!

{newest paintings} 3/8/14

I've been painting up a storm this winter! I've added a few new paintings to my etsy store. Here's a preview! It also gives you a look at the progress of decorating my apartment.

Here's a new addition to my bathroom...
The paintings above are a sweet addition to my bedroom.

I already added music paintings, but these are the ones I painted for my own living room...

And here's a couple more from Christmas that you haven't seen yet...
I love decorating my place with my own artwork!

Check out my etsy store if you want to see all my paintings!