Social media has changed me life.
That sounds really dramatic, doesn't it.
For effect, I should probably say that it means EVERYTHING to me and
I would DIE without it.
That's a little much...but seriously, it has changed my life.
In the past year, especially, God has used social media, especially my blog and Instagram
To help me push past my fears and reach out.
It's that old "overcomer" thing again.
When I think of the people I know today that I didn't know a year ago,
And the people I know more deeply today that I just knew on the surface a year ago
I'm amazed at how God has used these tools to change me.
I'm thrilled at the way He prompts me
To trust more fully,
To love more completely,
To give more than I ever thought I could.
And He's connecting me with people who live so many places I've never even thought of visiting...so how would I have met them and learned about their lives without social media?
Have you met Joy Kinnard from SmalltownJoy? She's an amazing wife, mom and friend...and most importantly, an awesome example of God's goodness. She shares how "daily manna unfolds" in relation to so many things regarding her family, most specifically, regarding her son Riley.
Riley was diagnosed with Pars Planitis (an eye disease) in both eyes at the end of third grade. Up until this time, he was very active in sports, playing baseball and basketball. Originally, the doctors felt that his eyes were experiencing trauma from an injury, but we could not recall any injury. We spent months seeking a diagnosis and eventually we were sent to a specialist about four hours away from our home. He diagnosed Riley's eyes with Pars Planitis within a few minutes and began a treatment plan.
Pars Planitis is a disease that attacks the Pars Plana area of the eye located on the inside of the eye around the retina. It can, and generally does, lead to blindness. A danger with Pars Planitis is sudden loss of vision.He may go to sleep with sight and wake up without sight.
Riley has endured five surgeries on his right eye. As a result of the disease he also has a pupil disorder, glaucoma, cataracts, swelling, snowbanks and severe scarring in his eye. Without glasses, he is considered legally blind. He is no longer participating in sports.
We completely depend on God to provide for Riley's medical needs, We make frequent trips out of state for his specialized medical care. In the beginning, the Lord laid it on my heart to set aside an envelope for RIley's medical needs. We call it "Riley's God Pocket" and the Lord always fills it for us as He promised he would. We have seen the envelope empty and fill again time after time. It has increased our faith and and allowed us to grow closer to God.
Riley is now in eighth grade. He is an honors students and hopes to be graphic designer when he grows up. We make efforts to take him to "see" things he'd like to see when possible. Riley is a joy to be around and never, ever complains about his eye.
We want to stuff Riley's God Pocket full of money, and one way we're doing that is by selling another t-shirt!
Staying Gold is about not bowing to the pressure you feel to conform to the norm...whether you're five years old on the playground or fifty-five in the gym or the boardroom.
We want to encourage you to be yourself and not let anyone steal your joy...and so we say to you...STAY GOLD!
Printed on a black t-shirt or tank, yo
u will shine (with the metallic screen print)!
Available in adult and youth sizes!.
Here's the link!
Monday, February 3, 2014
Thursday, January 30, 2014
My word for the year is OVERCOMER.
I believe it was “given” to me to celebrate some of the things I have overcome in the past few years…some of my fears that I’ve “overcome”…and when I say overcome, I don’t mean that I’m victorious every day…I mean that I’ve recognized them as legitimate fears and made changes to not be ruled by those fears.
By accepting the word “overcomer” I’m challenging myself to not live by those fears…but to be fervently focusing on NOT living by those fears. For me, a big part of that is maintaining a relationship with God, and being accountable to others. It’s also making changes, slowly, so they become a way of life, not an exception or an obligation.
This year I decided to make some changes that will affect my life. I know myself well enough to know that doing anything cold-turkey (I hate cold turkey both figuratively and literally) will only end in defeat. I knew I had to make gradual changes if they were going to be a part of my life forever.
And here is where I want to clarify, that this is not a promotion for any product…I’m not getting paid or being motivated by anyone to write this…I’m just sharing my choices with you.
So on January 2 I started Weight Watchers online. I downloaded a sweet little app on my phone and started living by points…but the points have not been restrictive, they have been a guideline for me to live within. I CAN literally eat anything, but that might be the only thing I eat for the day…and if you make that choice, you will quickly find out that you don’t really need that bottle of Cherry Pepsi that’s worth 8 points when you could have a whole Lean Cuisine BBQ chicken pizza for 9 points…or a whole bag of baby carrots with 2 tablespoons of light ranch dressing for 2 points. TWO POINTS, people…
I’m proud to say that I have only gone over my “daily points” into my “weekly points” once. And of course, it was for Chili’s chips and salsa…I mean really people, you know that has my heart.
In addition to the food plan…I added the YOUversion “Made to Crave” devotional. Twenty-one days, before I even get up of hearing a Biblical perspective on what I should be craving…not food, but obedience. It’s definitely made a difference for me.
Now I also know that the fact that Mr. Bacon is on third shift right now and home in the evening is helpful. I know one of the reasons I am overweight is emotional eating. When he was working 2nd shift every evening there was no emotional connection for me…I’d just fill it with food. And no, I’m not one of those gluttonous eaters with boxes of donuts or bags of fast food…but I wasn’t careful and I was eating. I know that when he goes to 2nds again in a month I will have temptation facing me again, however I plan to have one more month of discipline and motivation under my belt before that happens.
This week I’ve been sick with a cold and it is irritating. I’m tired and congested and feeling blah…and of course, I want to feel better…and what makes us feel better?? FOOD!!! YAY!!! Yesterday was “one of those days.” I wanted to be like, “I’m sick, I’ll eat what I want.” I ate lunch with friends and added it all to the tracker…(Eating at a stir fry place is awesome because you know exactly what you’re putting in!) I took FaithWalker to work and we stopped at McDonald’s on the way…I NEEDED a shake. I ordered a small chocolate shake…and added the points. I NEEDED a Whopper from Burger King…and added a Whopper with ketchup only to my tracker. Sigh… but guess what. I didn’t snack on anything at home or throughout the day. No emergency bottles of soda or tastes of this or that…and I still ended the day below my points allotment. I’m learning.
This month’s shirt is for people like me…who fall off the wagon…and get back on. It applies to so many areas of life, but seriously, right now, this shirt is all about falling and getting back up.
Oh, and you’re probably wondering how much weight I’ve lost since January 2…TWENTY-THREE POUNDS!
Next up...MOVE!!! Which is part of the reason I designed this month's shirt...because I know I'm going to fall...This shirt...the SEVEN DOWN UP EIGHT shirt motivates me to get back up...when I fall, when I don't want to walk...or move. Please consider purchasing a shirt for yourself...or someone you know who is an OVERCOMER!!!
Profits from the sale of the SEVEN DOWN-UP EIGHT shirt will support the You are so Loved Project AND The Ladder Alliance in Fort Worth, Texas, empowering victims of domestic violence or low-income women with the tools to lead self-reliant, independent and successful lives
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Last fall my husband told me about the next tattoo he wants to get.
We are a tattoo family…
If you didn’t know that.
He has three.
I have six.
My daughter has four (she is 17)
My son doesn’t have any (he is 11)
If you’re new to my world, you will know that the last two years have been cuh-ray-zeeee…
On top of an adult life of crazy, the last two years…overwhelming, to say the least.
But I digress…
Mr. Bacon (that’s my husband…because he’s a cop…get it…pig…bacon) had a good job…
But we worked in the same department and nepotism is an issue where we work…
And he had a shot at his dream job…a cop in a city with lots of issues and lots of geography.
He interviewed and he waited.
And he waited.
He went to the police academy.
He started training.
He completed his training.
He realized the job wasn’t for him.
He worked a temp job as security for high value transports which meant lots of travel.
He worked and waited.
He got a job at another college.
He applied for a job at another college as a sworn officer.
He was hired as a sworn police officer.
If he hadn't gotten up the first or second time or sixth time,
He wouldn't be in a job he loves.
His tattoo idea is based on the Japanese proverb
Fall down seven times, get up eight.
If you read the above “paragraph” you see why this is important to him…
This time of year we’re all making changes, aren’t we?
Whether or not we’ve told anyone about those changes…
We’re doing it.
And we feel like we’re failing.
Maybe once, maybe twice, maybe seven times in a day.
And the truth is…one of the hardest parts about trying isn’t the perceived failure
And that’s the most important part.
I created a t-shirt design to honor that getting up again.
For Olympians and athletes and those of us that are on our own quest.
For writers and painters and creators of all kinds.
For students and teachers and moms and dads.
Money from this project will go to the You are so Loved Project
Fund as well as The Ladder Alliance supporting empowering survivors of domestic abuse.
The Down Seven, Up Eight t-shirt is available for preorder today by going to my shop.
And for the next week, use the code GETUP8 for 15% off all orders!