A simple smile is worth the while.

Years back I was reading an article. 

I can’t remember what the title of the article was or why I was conducting research on the particular topic, however, I do know that the message the article conveyed has stayed with me for many, many years.

The article was about the Golden Gate Bridge. To many of us, the bridge signifies beauty as it towers high towards the heavens, surrounded by a glorious curtain of clouds and fog. Children and adults have awed over it’s beauty, often times traveling all the way across the world just to snap a picture of the massive structure. But do these children, do these adults have any idea the dark secret that this bridge holds? A secret so dark that it is rarely spoken about except in rare articles like the one that I happened to come across.

As I was reading the article, my mind began to develop the words into images that formed within my brain and tugged harshly at my heart strings. A storm of emotions arose in me as I imagined the dark days that the bridge has seen all of the years since it was erected.

Instead of imagining a bright, red bridge surrounded by a glorious array of sunshine, my mind began to twist the image that I have always known of the bridge. My brain now saw a dark, black bridge surrounded by ominous clouds that were now releasing a fury of rain … rain that symbolized the tears that were being shed upon the walkways of that bridge every day.

I will attempt to recapture the story that I read so that you may see why this has stuck with me all of these years. (this is in my own words).

At night was the most prominent time that the bridge would see this tremendous heartache, however, the day time had begun to become a prime time for the thinker. The thinker, as I will call him, began his journey on either side of the bridge … it didn’t matter which for the bridge stretched wide and long in both directions. The thinker would step upon the bridge,  high above the water below and begin his solemn walk on top of the hard concrete. At first, the thinker’s eyes would scale the ground, not daring to look up at the other people who were passing by. However, as his feet shuffled along, the eyes became curious and slowly lifted. The pupils captured hundreds of other faces beside the thinker’s body … shuffling along just as he was. Some were hurrying to get to work, some were enjoying a jog in the bright sunshine. Other people were pushing baby strollers while laughing at their toddlers who were running around in circles beside them.

The thinker’s eyes would then search. They would search these faces that surrounded him, all the while trying to suppress the feeling of loneliness that had so selfishly crawled into the bones of his very body … holding him as a prisoner. The feeling of loneliness, of just wanting to be wanted … to be noticed … could not be suppressed however. As others’ eyes met the thinker’s eyes the loneliness showed, but the others’ eyes jerked away, quickly as if seeing an image that had appalled them.

After this happening time after time, the thinker once again dropped his eyes to the ground, a sinking feeling filling his entire soul from head to feet. Then, the sinking feeling disappears and suddenly a strong, overpowering emotion overtakes the thinker’s walk  … pushing his legs forward further onto the bridge, determined to come to the destination that has been so thoughtfully planned out for months. The thinker then stops, clasping his hands towards the front of his body and begins to twirl nervous thumbs around and around. The thinker’s eyes lift one last time towards the buzzing crowd, once again searching for that bit of kindness. Nothing. No one. 

The thinker then turns towards the outer edge of the bridge, unwinds his thumbs and grasps the cold, metal of the railing that encases the bridge. The water glistened beneath the thinker, colored a beautiful, blue and beckoning soul. Without hesitation, the thinker climbs atop the railing, his calf muscles screaming already from the exertion that it takes to climb to the top rail. With sweaty palms and shaking lips, the thinker plunges to his death. The thinker no longer became a thinker of suicide, rather he became a doer. Another life lost.

This very story occurs hundreds of times per year. 

This is what has stuck with me, haunted me in a since. The thinker was just as his name sounds. He was thinking of committing suicide because he believed no one loved him, no one cared enough to know that he even existed. He searched the eyes of strangers, hoping that maybe just one person out of the hundreds that walked by him would offer up a simple smile.

When the suicide note was found days later in his apartment, the article stated that the man had said if someone smiled at him, he wouldn’t commit suicide.

Isn’t that just an awful, sad, heart wrenching thing to read? “If someone just smiles at me I won’t commit suicide.”

How dare us, as human beings, be so desensitized to the emotions of other humans. How dare us be so incredibly caught up in our own selfish ways that we fail to notice the hurt that other humans are feeling, especially that of our family or our friends. How dare us not do anything to help someone who is fighting the intense, all consuming disease of depression, of anxiety. How dare us not let our eyes linger on a stranger and offer a simple, effortless smile.

I want each of you to remember this story for the rest of your lives. It has really helped me to be more interactive with people when I am out in public. Believe it or not, every day I think of this story when I encounter the public, whether it is at the grocery store, a ball game or even at the doctor’s office. I may not personally know what anyone is going through. Heck, they may be the strangest person on the planet, however, if I can prevent ONE person from committing suicide, then my effortless smile is WORTH IT. If I can make ONE person’s day, JUST ONE, I have accomplished a great and amazing thing in this world.

You never know what someone may be going through. You never know when you may walk by that person that wrote that suicide note saying, “If just one person smiles at me… I won’t do it today.” YOU NEVER KNOW. 

So smile. Curve those lips into an effortless grin. Show your pearly whites a bit.

You just never know …. you may be the one that saves someone’s life. 

 

 

Xoxo,

All Smiles.

 

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Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..

Life is hard. 

Really, LIFE IS HARD. I’m not trying to sugar coat this. There are times that I literally have to stop what I am doing and think, “Did that really just happen to me? Can I even take this anymore?” I will lay my head in my hands and sometimes even weep. But, although I get super down on myself at those crazy points in time, I know that the answers to my questions are YES and YES. A very strong yes.

I scream that yes within my soul. It shakes my entire body. I rise from my weeping state and I push my shoulders back, hold my head up high and I trudge forward.

I can take it. I can take anything that life throws at me because I am a strong human being. God designed us to be able to weather through the storms that life all too often brings us. He made us tough; so tough that we can actually fight back when life wants to hit us in the gut. He made us strong; so strong that we can actually pick up our burdens and carry them like feathers on our back. Finally, He made us with grace. What does this mean?

Well, this means that there are times where you, me, or anyone may not take those “down in the dumps” days so well. There will be days that I curse the wind, hold my fist up to the sky and shake it out of complete anger, screaming “WHY? WHY ME?” There will be days that I wonder how God could ever allow the devil to burden me with such heartache, such emotional stress and such temptation.

Right there is where grace steps in. God is FULL of grace. He knows that we will have these bad days and that often times we may not take those days so well. But, He will so beautifully, so perfectly shed His glorious light of grace upon us and FORGIVE us for our actions. He will lift those burdens off of our backs and place them on His! He will take our tears and cup them into His hands, hold us in His arms and comfort our souls.

Yes, God will literally suffer for us. He will take our burdens, our pains, our depression, everything and suck it from our souls and pour it into His.

Doesn’t that just make you shiver? It does me. To know that my Creator forgives me of my mistakes and sheds grace over my life as I grow and learn from His perfectness, His kindness, His patience.

We must go through bad days to learn to appreciate the great ones (which far outweigh the bad, even if we don’t realize it). We also must experience hardships because it ultimately brings us closer to our Almighty. It sears our relationship together, creating a lasting bond that can never, ever be broken; not by my stressors, not by my emotions, not by my anxiety, depression or even by the devil himself. If I cling myself to the robes of Jesus, I will forever, always come out as victorious.

If you are struggling with a bad day today, no matter what the issue is, turn your head towards the sky, close your eyes and whisper a prayer. Ask God to shed is grace on you and He will work within your heart to calm your soul.

and remember, JUST KEEP SWIMMING!

I hope everyone enjoys their Tuesday nights.

Xoxox,

God’s daughter.

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My life is like a country song.

“Work, work, work, all week long. Punchin’ that clock from dusk till dawn. Countin’ the days till Friday night, that’s when all the conditions are right .. for a good time. I need a good time.” 

As I trudge through the work day today, this catchy Alan Jackson song plays in my head. Since it is Friday (finally!) it fits in pretty well (only 46 minutes until I am FREE for the weekend. Can I get an amen?!)

All though there are plenty of “Friday night” country songs that get us pumped for the weekend, there are also a crazy amount of another country songs that portray pretty much every single part of our lives. I can remember growing up and literally having a song for so many moments that happened in my life. There was a song for when a boy broke my heart in high school. There was a song for when I lost a race in track. There was a song for when I left my parents and ventured off to college. There was a song for the many nights that I partied with my friends down an old back road. There was a song for my first kiss, spilling barbecue on my white t-shirt, and even for when I got married. I’m sure you can relate!

Our lives are just like one big, long, never-ending country song. And who wouldn’t want a never-ending country song?! Throughout our lives from birth, to our wee little years, to being a teenager and beyond .. we have felt every single emotion possible. We have explored when we were little, we have fallen in love when we were young, we have gotten our hearts broken to the point where we think we cannot go on (oh, the teenage years!). After the whirlwind of teenage hood, we dive into the young adult world of working, marriage, starting a family, loosing a loved one and ultimately meeting our Jesus. For your enjoyment, I have put together lyrics from songs and made our very own “My Life is A  Country Song” song. I hope you enjoy it 😀

 

“I was born country, and that’s what I’ll always be. Like the rivers and the woodlands, wild and free (Born Country, Alabama).

Daddy’s belt, mommas drapes. Standing tall on the backyard shed, Lookin’ cool in my superman cape. I told the neighborhood girls, ‘Hey! Watch this!’ My fate was a broken arm. My reward was one big kiss (Chicks Dig It, Chris Cagle).

Now I might have to kiss no tellin’ how many lips before I ever really figure out what love is. Go through some heartbreaks, wake up with headaches. Don’t learn nothin’ till you make a lot of mistakes (Young & Crazy, Frankie Ballard).

And oh, you got so much going for you right, but I know at 17 it’s hard to see past Friday night. She wasn’t right for you, and you still feel like there’s a knife sticking out of your back and you’re wondering if you’ll survive (Letter to Me, Brad Paisley).

Holding you, I held everything, for a moment wasn’t I a king? But if I’d only known how the King would fall. Hey, whose to say, you know I might have changed it all (The Dance, Garth Brooks).

I gave it everything I had and everything I got was bad. Life ain’t hard, but it’s too long livin’ life like some country song. Trade the truth in for a lie, cheating really ain’t a crime. I’m givin’ up on love, cause love’s givin up on me (Kerosene, Miranda Lambert).

Eighteen years had come and gone. For mama they flew by, but for me they drug on and on. We were loading up that chevy, both tryin’ not to cry. Mama kept on talking, putting off goodbye. Then she took my hand and said, “Baby, don’t forget..” (Don’t Forget To Remember Me, Carrie Underwood).

At the parking lot party, tailgate buzz, just sippin’ on suds. Ain’t never too early, to light one up fill up your cup. Cause there ain’t no party like like the pre-party and the after the party, the after party at the parking lot party (Parking lot party, Lee Brice).

We’re Mountaineers, Volunteers. We’re the Tide that rolls. We’re Seminoles. We’re a heard of Longhorn Steers. We drive Ford and Chevrolet, shoot twenty-four and eighty-eight. We crank up our music Friday nights, on two thousand country stations. Yeah, we’re on big country nation, that’s right! (Country Nation, Brad Paisley).

I am so close to walking away, about to walk a path I’ve gotta take. I am packing up, heading out. I can’t sleep, I’m dreaming way too loud. I’m so close now, so close now to getting out (So close now, Eli Young Band).

Now won’t you tell me if you can, ‘Cause life’s so hard to understand. Why’s the rich man busy dancing, while the poor man pays the band. Oh they’re billing me for killing me,
Lord have mercy on the working man (Lord have Mercy on the Working Man, Travis Tritt).

Day one, I stumbled through hello on Fifth Avenue. Day two, we grabbed a bite to eat and talked all afternoon. Caught a movie on day fourteen and day sixty seven she said ‘I love you’ to me (What a Beautiful Day, Chris Cagle).

Got my face pushed up against the nursery glass. She’s sleeping like a rock, my name on her wrist, wearing tiny pink socks. She’s got my nose, she’s got her mama’s eyes. My brand new baby girl, she’s a miracle. I saw God today (I saw God Today, George Straight).

Remember when thirty seemed so old? Now, lookin’ back it’s just a stepping stone to where we are, to where we’ve been .. said we’d do it all again. Remember when? (Remember When, Alan Jackson).

One more day, one more time, one more sunset maybe I’d be satisfied. But then again, I know what it would do..Leave me wishing still for one more day with you. (One More Day, Diamond Rio).

But when I get where I’m going, and I see my Maker’s face, I’ll stand forever in the light of His amazing grace. Yeah, when I get where I’m going, there’ll be only happy tears. Hallelujah! I will love and have no fear. Yeah, when I get to where I’m going (When I get to Where I’m Going, Brad Paisley).”

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this post!! Keep on being country!!

 

Much love,

xoxo Country Girl Forever

 

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Busy like a bee.

There are times in our lives when it seems like we don’t have a moment to just breathe. 

 

Our lives seem so busy, so jam packed with meetings, classes, work days, or nightly homework. It seems as if the time of the day slips away faster than we can blink our eyes.

These are the days, however, when we need to find time to take a moment for ourselves. But you say, “Lynnse, I don’t have enough time to do that. You don’t understand how crazy my day is from start to finish. How can I make time for myself when I don’t even have enough time in the day to do the things that I need to get done?”

It’s simple. Yep! You really did just read that. IT’S SIMPLE. (please, hear me out before you roll your eyes).

You know in the morning when you hear your alarm go off? Yeah, I know. That is probably one of the most annoying sounds in world and I also know that all you want to do is hit that “Snooze” button about five times before you actually muster up the strength to actually get out of bed. I have an issue with this, too. I will actually set my alarm around an hour before I even need to get up because I feel like if I press snooze 20 times my body will feel like it’s slept longer. That doesn’t make ANY sense, but I still do it.

The funny thing is, I’m sure you’re nodding your head because you do it, too.

Well, here is where the “it’s simple” statement comes into play.

If we set our alarms for even just 30 minutes before we have to wake up and we DON’T PRESS SNOOZE, guess what? There is 30 minutes that we have to make a moment for ourselves! I know that this is a hard task to accomplish in the wee hours of the morning, but trust me when I say that you won’t regret it.

There are some days that I am able to get out of bed, stretch a little, and then go into the living room and have a cup of coffee while I do my daily devotional. Even if it is for a short 30 minutes, that time that I have with myself and with God is valuable time that will help me get through the rest of my day. If we start our days with a little bit of relaxation and a little bit of God (coupled with a cup of joe, of course!) then we are setting ourselves up for having a better outlook on the day ahead.

God wants us to make time for him, for ourselves and for our family. This is not only because He wants to spend time with us, but it’s because He wants us to have a clear mind, a clear heart and a good day, EVERYDAY … no matter how crazy the day may be with work, school, kids, or life in general. When we put Him first in the morning, we put Him first the rest of the day.

I challenge you to try not pressing the snooze button tomorrow morning. Take time for yourself for just 30 minutes. Whether you are having coffee, going for a run, busting out the yoga mat or reading your bible … I promise that you will feel better afterwards and will have a stress-free rest of your day.

Always remember that, even if our lives are crazy on a daily basis, we must not forget who we truly are and those things that make us truly happy. We must always make time for ourselves to unwind, de-stress and just be HAPPY. Take a moment throughout your day to just close your eyes and breathe in the beauty of life.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful, relaxing rest of their week!!

 

With love, xoxo

Relaxed and Caffeinated

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On God’s timing.

The last few weeks I have been terribly angry with God.

Have you ever been in my position? A position where you feel like you do everything you can to make things work; you pray, you read your bible, you’re faithful to God in your life, you’re good to others and you stand up for whats right, you work hard in every aspect of your life, yet it seems as if you aren’t getting anywhere.

For the majority of my life I have felt that things have always been extra hard for me. I don’t mean this in the way that my life in general was hard (money wise, family wise), however, I mean this as in nothing truly ever works out the way that I wish it to.

As I have grown through the stages over the years, I have watched others be granted with wonderful things … whether it be the job they want, the house they want or just a nice, easy, care free life. And then there’s me. I have had to work really hard for everything that I have and I have experienced disappointment after disappointment because none of these things that I have wanted have come easy. This has made me very angry with God and sometimes I don’t quite understand why I am the one who always gets the bad end of the stick.

The past two weeks haven’t been any different. Where do I even begin?

I applied for a job a year ago and have spent massive amounts of time interviewing, competing physical assessments, interviewing again, completing background checks and spending a lot of money on the travel to get to these places. Surprisingly, I get to the very last step of the process .. the polygraph. And I failed. Can I just tell you how much this crushed me? Its not the fact that I didn’t get the job, but it’s the fact that I didn’t get the job because they claim that I lied. This hurt me more than anything because deep in my heart I know that I was telling the truth. There was strike one for me.

Strike two came a few days after that. Mike has worked extremely hard for six months in a police academy and I am so happy and proud for him because he is finally graduating at the end of this month. I was super excited to plan a surprise graduation party for him, but, as usual, drama and life get in the way. Mike had to be told about the plans and he wished to cancel them. I don’t understand how something so fun and happy to plan can become so miserable in the matter of a few days just because of drama. This made me angry at God because, once again, nothing can ever just go smooth for me. It broke my heart for Mike because he wouldn’t be getting the surprise for his hard work.

Strike three came yesterday. Mike and I finally found a home that we absolutely fell in love with. It wasn’t perfect, but it was perfect for us and we could imagine our family blooming there. Well, we couldn’t get pre-approved for the amount and we had to let it go. This hurt the both of us, but it hurt me a lot. It seemed as if everything was falling apart and so many good things were spiraling down the toilet.

After we found out we were not pre-approved, Mike and I decided to go to a diner for breakfast to talk things over.

When we got our food, Mike placed his hand on the table for me to hold so that we could pray over our food. This is normal routine for us, however, I declined and said that he could pray, but I wasn’t. I was angry with God again.

Mike simply bowed his head and he prayed. He prayed for about a minute as I watched him.

During breakfast Mike continued to try and console me. He said things like, “Maybe it just isn’t the right time.”

When I came home and Mike went to work for the evening, God finally spoke to me. It wasn’t with big words that I could hear roaring through the walls of the house, but it was just a small twinge in my stomach. As I looked over at the clock that sits on our dresser, I realized what I had been ignoring for not only the past two weeks, but for the entirety of my life.

Time.

I realized that all though events in my life may make me sad, those events that occurred or didn’t occur was because it simply wasn’t God’s timing. God knows every move that we will make… every minute of the present and every minute of the future. He ultimately knows what is best for us and He knows when the TIME is right.

I reflected on my life in the past and saw that the many unanswered prayers were what brought me to where I am today. I would have never met Mike, I would have never experienced the things that I have, and I would have never survived if things didn’t happen on GOD’S TIME, rather than my own.

HE is perfect. HE is all knowing and HE will bring us what we need in HIS PERFECT TIMING.

His words to me made me feel better about the job. I didn’t get the job because He didn’t want me to never be home.

His words to me made me feel better about the graduation party. We didn’t have the party because He knew it would cause stress in Mike and I’s life.

His words to me made me feel better about the house. We will find the perfect house for us when the timing is right.

God gives me and you these struggles in our life because He knows that we can handle them. It also makes us appreciate the great things that we already do have and the many blessings that have been given to us without even asking!

I hope that if you are struggling with unanswered prayers, issues or disappointments today that you turn your eyes towards God. Mike’s faith never wavered during our hard times, and you and I should take that as an example and a reminder.

God will bring you what you need when the timing is right. 

 

Xoxo, Patiently Waiting.

 

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The Thin Blue Line.

It’s there in all of us. 

It’s the very essence of what we are made of.

We are the police.

We are the humans behind the badge, the gun and the uniform.

We are the sweaty foreheads being wiped off after chasing a bad guy down the street, over a fence and into a heavily wooded area.

We are the wet pants after swimming through mucky water to retrieve a suicidal person.

We are the arms wrapped around a child who has one too many bruises on their battered and broken body.

We are the comforting hug to a woman who has just lost her son in a tragic car accident.

We are the dislocated shoulder from rolling around on the ground with a man trying to get our firearm.

We are the hands over our face, choking back sobs because one of our own was taken far too soon.

We are the wolves, fighting evil in the darkest night hours as you sleep comfortably in your bed, safe from the cruelties of this world.

We are the wives. 

We are the support system behind the badge, the gun, and the uniform.

We are late night hours, eyes wide open and unable to sleep because we haven’t heard from our officers.

We are the bullets clanking around in the washing machine and the straight lines ironed on uniform shirts.

We are the lunch makers, the dinner waiters and the coffee suppliers.

We are the beautiful sound of velcro unfastening.

We are the tears running down a soft cheek as another officer falls to the hands of a criminal.

We are the wolves, holding up our officers as they not only battle the bad guys, but also the emotions that come home with them.

We are the dispatchers.

We are the phone call, the lifeline, and the angel voice on the radio.

We are the must stay calm during stressful events, our voices never shaking, never faltering.

We are an officer’s life saver during a shots fired call; always keeping our cool as we hear our troops screaming over the radio for help.

We are the foundation to the police department.

We are the midnight shift, gathering together in a hug after a bad call.

We are the wolves, supporting our agencies and saving lives within our communities.

We are the jailers. 

We are getting spit on simply for doing our jobs.

We are fighting criminals within the confines of a concrete room with no gun, just our hands.

We are being called crude names for twelve hours straight, but never becoming angry.

We are the hour long drive to transport a juvenile that has no home to go back to.

We are the wolves, holding the world together by keeping our criminals confined while placing our lives on the line.

We are the hospital staff. 

We are the blood pools on the floor.

We are the tourniquet around a bulging leg.

We are the sharp scalpel and the prayer that a surgery is to go well.

We are the scissors that cut off a blue uniform shirt.

We are the miracle that enables an officer to walk again.

We are the wolves, tiring ourselves to save the lives of officers who didn’t deserve what happened to them.

We are the children.

We are the sons and daughters of police officers across the world.

We are the glue that holds our families together.

We are the bright smile, the tight hug and the laughter as our parents pull into the driveway.

We are the innocent ‘thank you’ and the ‘can I have a picture?’.

We are the police costume, the future dreams.

We are the motivation for our parents to come home safe every single night.

We are the wolves, impacting more lives around us than we know, just because we exist.

We are the Thin Blue Line.

We are family.

We are a pack.

We are the wolves.

We are unstoppable, unbreakable, and fierce.

We are tied together with a line that extends and intertwines through each and every one of our lives. The line connects us and makes us ONE.

Together, we will come home safe.

Together, we will win, always.

Together …. we are

the Thin Blue Line.

 

You will never break us.

 

xoxo, Forever blue.

 

 

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Cat woman, wonder woman, you.

What do all of these women have in common?

 

Well, one of them has expert martial arts skills and can kick you in the teeth with the very bottom of her boot. The other has the power of super human speed and strength and can throw you across a 10 mile long lake without even blinking first. The last, well, the last is just a normal, everyday human who doesn’t have any super powers whatsoever….         so you think.

We may not be like cat woman or wonder woman, but us girls possess a lot of powers that we may not know about. Yep, you .. me … the girl you sit beside on the subway train…we have powers …magical powers … superhuman powers ….whatever you would like to call them. It is a complete secret because, well, we don’t want the boys to find out right?

The truth is, you may be sitting here reading this wondering what kind of alcoholic beverage that I had to drink tonight and when I flew over the coo-coo nest. To answer both of those questions … I am completely sober and I flew over the coo-coo nest a long time ago 😀 just kidding.

Anyways, back to the subject matter. Women possess several powers that we carry with us from birth all the way to the last day we have on this earth. They develop over the years and become stronger and more prevalent, however, they never die off or simply go away. They are engraved in our bones, swirling through our blood all of the days of our lives.

It starts when we are born. Who else has the power to make a grown man cry the moment that they enter the planet? What other thing causes an insane amount of pain and then makes it all disappear within a seconds time? The answer to that question is this: nothing but a little baby girl’s smile. We have entered the world and we have immediately been given our first superpower….the power to change emotions. Even though we have poopie diapers and smelly feet, our little smiles have been known to  send a warming feeling through the most cold, mean and bitter person you can even think of. Tell me that isn’t magical?

The next one doesn’t make an appearance until we are a tad older. We are just opening our eyes to the world, beginning to walk, starting to talk and say “momma” or “dada”, all the while we are exploring. Our eyes are seeing the world around us, our feet are transporting us to new places, our voices are capturing the beauty of a language that has been passed down through generation after generation. We are slowly and ever so surely becoming who we were meant to be.

Sure, we are simply just toddlers, little children who have no clue about the world and about life. But, we are more curious and open to our feelings in these few short years than we are at any point in time during the rest of our lives. We are inquisitive of every detail around us; including the infinite brown speckles that cover our noses and the black as night birds that fly into the bright skies. Our minds are transforming, growing and absorbing the beauty of being alive. Curiosity overcomes us often as we learn new aspects of life and then we get a small glimpse into what we wish our futures to become.

As little girls we dream of our future jobs as veterinarians or doctors or police officers or dog cuddlers. This curiosity and interest becomes a superpower, a beautiful magical moment that will stay with us the rest of our days, for as long as we live. Our passion to pursue a career that involves helping others and kindness will etch our behaviors and visions until we are old and grey. I personally wanted to be a veterinarian when I grew up. Truly, ever since I could talk all I wanted to do was help animals and love on them. I never became a veterinarian, and somedays I regret not fulfilling the dreams of that little girl, but those dreams are what shaped me into who I am today. I constantly think about those dreams, those passions and those visions and I work towards making that little girl that I once was happy and proud to be the woman that she is today. That is a superpower all in itself. We channel our inner child and we venture into life not wanting to disappoint the little girls of our past and we wish to forever keep that kid-like passion and kindness to share with the world in our futures.

As we get a little bit older we discover new places around the world, whether it be in our own town, our own state or even our own country … we start to get a feel of what this large planet is like. We start to meet people of all shapes and sizes and of all different kinds of backgrounds. Our mothers and fathers drop us off at school where we meet strangers and then sit beside them in the lunchroom. This is where another superpower rises inside of us and sends tingles down into our fingers and into our toes. Talking to those strangers becomes easy and before we know it we are best friends with those other kids that we didn’t even know five minutes ago. We issue no judgments against them, whether it be about the brand of their clothing, their size, their hair color, their race or their religion. We simply love them because they are nice and funny and because they play house with us.

An hour later we are running around holding hands with these same strangers, laughing and telling them all of our secrets.

This is even true when we are out walking the town with our families. Momma is holding your hand and twirling her thumb atop your wrist as you walk down the sidewalk next to tall buildings. You see a man, battered and dirty sitting against a brick wall. Without even thinking, you let go of your momma’s hand, reach into your pocket and grab a pile of change that you had saved in your piggy bank so that you could purchase an ice cream cone that evening. Against your mom’s wishes, you race over to the man .. offer a smile and drop the change into his hand. Once again, there are no judgments, no bad words exchanged about the man’s attire … just love.

The way that we think, the way that we love and the way that we care for others is innocently beautiful at this age. There are no boundaries, borders or crazy opinions .. just love. Our superpowers have now grown from that of kindness to that of intense love; playful and innocent love.

As we grow older into our teenage years we continue to have this type of innocent love. We may find ourselves not making friends as easy or becoming slightly frustrated with life, but our hearts are still filled with a burning fire; one that ignites each day and continues to burn throughout the night. At this age, we discover the true pain of heartbreak and of crying ourselves to sleep at night when a boy breaks up with us. But, through the thousands of tears on our pillows and through pressing repeat a thousand times on the same old love song … we keep fighting and we keep loving. Even though our hearts have been squeezed and crushed from the weight of pain, we eventually will smile and we will eventually love again. That is a superpower of a young woman. It is the ability to turn our heartaches into a flaming, never-ending passion that will never give up on the idea of loving another.

Then we enter into our twenties, which some will say are the best days of our lives. We are young, beautiful and flawless. Our personalities have never been so free, fun and courageous. We now have the simple ability to walk into a room and stop the beating of hearts, stop the murmuring of conversation, and capture the attention of a man who has never believed in love, all because we flashed a simple, little smile. Our features are now our superpowers. Our glow, our confidence and our youthful, womanly beauty is the magic that makes us widely unique and powerful. It helps to radiate the love that we feel in our hearts.

That boy who caught the small glimpse of our smile now becomes our husband. As we walk down the aisle, side-by-side with our fathers, we suddenly have the ability to make a grown man cry. Now, this is where I come back with that super power of changing emotions. We, as women, are basically the only things in this world that have the ability to make a grown man cry (I mentioned this wayyyy up there, remember?). There are very few times in this lifetime where you will see a man cry … and those times include the birth of their child and on their wedding day. So, that’s a pretty magically big superpower to have …… and they are both for really good reasons. This is the ultimate ability to receive love from someone else! The ability to open up and become vulnerable and expose your true, naked self. We are essentially shedding off our shells and letting a man into our lives who we will trust to take care of us …. and that is a superpower all in itself; the ability to receive love.

As we begin to have children and start our lives with another … the process begins all over again, except our littles ones are now gaining the superpowers that we were so lucky to have gained all those years ago. It is a beautiful, timeless and endless cycle that cascades through the generations of life on this Earth.

Now, it doesn’t end there. It doesn’t end when we have children or become messy haired moms that wear sweat pants 99% of the time. There is a HUGE superpower that we possess our ENTIRE LIVES. 

So, by now we have the super power of kindness, love, beauty and making grown men cry (my fav … haha), oops I mean receiving love. Although some of these superpowers may fade, there is one that is constantly active in our souls.

If we couple all of these together then we have the largest super power that a girl will ever, ever, ever possess. That is the WILL, DRIVE, and ABILITY to BECOME ANYTHING THAT WE WANT TO BE!

Each of us have a dream. Whether you want to be an author, a businesswoman, an astronaut or a plumber, each of us have the ability to accomplish and succeed at anything that we set our minds to. And that is what makes us WOMEN. Strong, powerful, unbeatable women.

No matter if we are two years old, or 99 years old, no matter whether we have five kids or none at all…. this superpower is INTENSE and CONSUMING ….giving us the ability to accomplish anything that we can dream of doing at ANY time!

So, ENGAGE that power! USE it! GO back to school even if you are 40! GO on that blind date when you are 65! START that business when you’re 21! JUST GO FOR IT! Make your dreams a reality! Your superpower is already there to make it happen.

Remember to never try and suppress your superpowers. Always show kindness by remembering what you were like when you were little. Remember how you treated others as you grew up to be a young child. Don’t forget the love that you showed to strangers and how you accepted them just as they were. Never forget that you are beautiful, inside and out and that you have the ability to make a room light up just because you entered it. Remember to always cherish those moments with your significant other; never take their love for granted and remember to never push his love away. Most importantly, remember that you are a woman who is fierce, determined, and powerful.

You will always be successful if you engage these powers at all times.

Wonder woman doesn’t stand a chance against you and your dreams. 

 

Xoxo, superhero girl.

 

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May the force be with you.

This quote conjures up terrifying feelings in the depths of my stomach and makes my spine shiver. 

Why? Because it reminds me of Yoda and I am deathly scared of that creature (I know, I know. Have a good laugh at that one).

But, once I get passed that horrifying, little green man who looks like an alien … I think of the true meaning behind this quote and I apply it to my life.

I have never really struggled with my weight throughout the years. I have always been healthy and skinny because I was blessed with not only a strong metabolism, but also a drive to exercise and eat decently.

For the past year or so, however, I have lost over 20 pounds. To many of you, this may be a blessing, but to me? It is a horrible reminder that I look like a skeleton everyday of my life.

Before last year, believe it or not, I actually had muscles and looked very fit. But, before I knew it and could see the change, stress hit me like a train going 1,000 miles an hour. Everyone knows what stress can do to your health and for me, it caused me to loose all of that weight and now I am having a hard time putting it back on.

Today I really noticed the change. I took a picture this morning, one of which I will post below, and as I looked back at it I realized then just how unhealthy I do look. For my height, a healthy weight is around 140 pounds. I weigh whopping 123 pounds.

However, although I don’t really like the image that I see in the mirror …. my body feels amazing. I haven’t felt this much energy and clarity in I don’t know how long.

And this is where I make my point.

Many of us, especially us women, look in the mirror every single day and don’t like what we see. We may be happy, energetic, joyful and feel good in our souls … but we don’t like the image in the mirror.

In our lives we may have friends, family or even strangers judging us because of the way we look. I can’t go a day without someone saying, “You’re too skinny” or “You look sick”. This creates a negative atmosphere in our brains and gets us thinking that maybe we are really too skinny or too big and we really don’t look good. This ultimately hurts our emotional well-being, forcing us to become depressed and unmotivated.

We must stop doing this. We must stop listening to other people and their opinions. We must stop looking in the mirror and seeing someone who we don’t necessarily like anymore. We must stop comparing ourselves to others, especially those beautiful models on the television. We must stop draining our happiness because that shirt doesn’t fit quite the way it should.

One of the main ingredients for happiness is to love yourself. It’s that simple. To be happy we must first love ourselves, even though I know that it sometimes doesn’t come so easily. But it can and I’m going to reveal my secret recipe for it.

Ready?

Smile. Breathe. Erase.

Yep! It’s that easy. It’s three simple steps each day that bring you to self love.

You wouldn’t believe the medicine that a smile delivers to your body. Don’t believe me? Try it! Wake up in the morning tomorrow and go into the bathroom. With your messy hair, make-up free face …. smile at yourself in the mirror. You will see how truly beautiful you are when you’re happy and you will now forever want that feeling in your body.

Next is to just breathe. You’re putting on your shirt and it has gotten a little tight or those favorite pants of yours no longer fit. Breathe. Just stop, take a deep breath and then let it all out. So what if you have gained a few pounds or lost a few pounds? You’re still you. And that just means you can go on a shopping spree for new clothes! And who doesn’t love new clothes?!

Lastly, erase. Anytime that a negative thought pops up in your head or anytime that someone makes one of those snide comments to you … immediately erase it. File that thought or that comment somewhere deep into your brain where you will never hear or think it again. It’s gone … POOF…erased. Yes, it is that easy.

Because when you start to smile, breathe and then erase any negative image of yourself that you have either conjured up yourself or that someone has fed to you … you begin to be positive. You begin to love yourself in the deepest way possible. No matter your body shape, you will begin to feel beautiful in your own skin again.

And that, y’all, is called the force.

When someone is happy because they love themselves they have the force surrounding them. A force so strong that no one can break. A force that they want to share with others, so that they, too, can feel just how amazing it is.

I have that force and I want you to feel it, too. All though I may need to gain some weight and all though I may look like a skeleton to some … I feel beautiful just the way I am and, most importantly, I am happy. There is more to me than my appearance, just like there is more to you than what you think you look like.

There is intelligence, loyalty, friendship, determination and good morals. That is what makes us beautiful … not our body … not our clothing size … not our skin.

Try my three easy steps and let me know how much better you feel tomorrow.

And remember:

It doesn’t matter if you’re 500 pounds or 80 pounds … you, too, are absolutely beautiful, unique and YOU. There is no other person like you in the world and that just makes you irreplaceable and flawless.

May the force be with you.

 

Xoxo, I love me!

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Do you solemnly swear to protect me from spiders as long as we both shall live?

Let’s face it… marriage is hard. 

Can I get a witness?!

 

During the engagement phase of our relationships and all the way up to the wedding day,  we all had it in our minds that marriage was going to be the most beautiful, most wonderful, most joyous stage of our lives. But, let’s face it. Marriage is beautiful, however, it is a beautiful mess.

Marriage is waking up next to your partner who has snored all night long, has extremely bad breath and spots of dried drool on their chin. Marriage is walking into a stinky bathroom and trying to hold your breath as you pick up the dirty clothes that have piled on the floor. Marriage is sometimes taking a cold shower because they stayed in theirs a little too long. Marriage is eating burnt pizza because it was forgotten in the oven. Marriage is impatiently waiting for your partner to come home from work, knowing that they are at least an hour late, and becoming upset because dinner is getting cold on the table. Marriage is rubbing smelly feet, tight backs and scratching a head of hair. Marriage is arguing over stupid things and slamming bedroom doors.

I could go on all night, talking about the tough parts of marriage and the beautiful mess that it has brought into my life. But, as you noticed, the key word there is “beautiful”. I know that you probably don’t think any of the things that I mentioned above are beautiful, but I do. Each of those things above are simply what makes marriage beautiful, worthwhile and one of those messes that I don’t want to clean up. Why?

Well because even though your partner snores all night long and you don’t get much sleep …. you still get to sleep next to that person for the rest of your life; that person that you love and admire; that person that you’re thankful is alive. Not everyone gets this chance in life.

Because even though they wake up with bad breath and dried slobber on their chins, they are waking up beside you. They are reaching over and giving you a soft kiss on your forehead and then looking at you with sleepy eyes. Because this is when they are in their most vulnerable state …. messy hair, slobbery chin, eye boogers dried on the corners of their eyes. This is when they are the most beautiful. They are letting you see the part of them that they have hid away from so many other people, and that to me … makes you one lucky person.

Because, well, a stinky bathroom is gross, but hey … it means that this person is comfortable around you. I know that each and every one of us tried to hide our bathroom encounters when we were dating our significant others. Come on, I know that you turned on the shower or the sink … sometimes both …. locked the door and then sprayed a giant mound of perfume into the room when you were done. As funny as that sounds, it happened to all of us. It meant that we weren’t comfortable around our partners just yet, but when you’re married …. it all hangs out and sometimes that is a stinky, yet great thing. The sense of being comfortable enough around someone to do these things means that we have found a true friend that we know won’t judge us too much.

Because sometimes that cold shower means that our partner had a bad day and needed to stay in just a little bit longer. It means giving them their space and being okay with that. Other times it means that you and your partner have enjoyed time together, laughing underneath the warmth of the water and getting to know each other a little bit better. Quality time, no matter how cold the water gets, is extremely important to any marriage ….even when it’s in the shower.

Because sometimes dinner doesn’t always go as planned. Because it is such a beautiful, selfless gesture when your husband sits at the table and eats every single bite of that burnt pizza without making a single complaint. Because he says, “It’s delicious” when you know darn well that it tastes like a piece of coal. It’s the selfless acts of kindness that make a marriage beautiful …especially when you make your partner feel good after they have ruined dinner.

Because sometimes that candlelight dinner that you made will get cold, and it’s okay. Our partners will not always be home on time from work, and that just shows that they are willing to put in the effort to make money for our family. They are exerting themselves so that we may have that dinner on the table, even if it does go slightly cold from time to time. It just makes the moment all that much better when they walk through the door and you know that they are safe at home from their shift. Not everything can go perfect on a day to day basis and that in itself is a beautiful part of life.

Because sometimes our partners simply just need our touch. Whether this be on their smelly, tired feet … their tight shoulders or on their fuzzy heads …. our partners need to feel that they are physically loved, too. Husbands are known to constantly want to be rubbed and massaged (at least mine does). Instead of complaining, see it as an act of love. Not only does it comfort them after a long day, but it also shows them that you love them, care for their well-being, and that you have amazing massage techniques!

Lastly, because arguments and slammed doors are a part of any relationship. Honestly, if you don’t argue with your partner from time to time …. I think there is something wrong with you! When you are married to someone, there is bound to be little fights over stupid things like putting the toilet seat down or not taking the trash out or the way that they breathe sometimes. You are living, in close courters, with this person … seeing all of their quirks and personality traits. But you know what makes those arguments beautiful? It’s making up. It’s apologizing to each other with tears in your eyes and then holding each other for an hour afterwards. It’s slamming the bedroom door and then throwing each other on the bed ..letting passion and forgiveness take over both your bodies. It’s laughing in the middle of an argument because your partner is making a funny face. It’s often times giving in, admitting that you’re wrong even when you know you’re right.

Marriage is a beautiful, beautiful mess and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Sure, it leaves me tired and frustrated sometimes, but those amazing moments mentioned above outweigh the bad moments. And yes, they may be small and stupid, but I cherish every single one of them. I get to spend the rest of my life annoying the same person, kissing the same person in the morning right when I wake up, and saying I love you to the same person in a million ways the rest of my years on this earth. I get to grow old with my special someone..

And that, folks, is love. And that is all I have ever wished for.

 

Xoxo, Happily Married Girl.

 

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sip coffee. read. repeat.

Tonight is all about book reading. 

Once again I am sitting here at 1130 at night, blessed with the inability to not be able to sleep at a decent time. But, hey … I get to write to you beautiful people so what am I complaining about?

Tonight I want to introduce my books to you. As I was sitting on the basement floor rummaging through my belongings earlier, I found a huge pile of books that I have neglected for quite some time now. These aren’t just any old books … no … these are my pride and joys. I am the author of them.

I cannot tell you the joy that writing has brought me over the years. I have been writing stories since the young age of second grade (whatever age you are in the second grade) and let me tell you, I sure did have an amazing imagination. Sometimes I wish that we could grow up, but keep that vividness and childlike innocence that we had when we were little.

No matter what, I will probably never write as well as I did back then. I was free and I didn’t care what other people thought when they read my books. Today, I’m a little more critical of myself and am afraid for people to see the *real* me (typical author phobias I guess). Anyways, I’m slowly starting to come out of that shell as I have been selling quite a few books recently.

Nothing in this world brings me more joy than someone telling me that they loved my book or that my writing touched them in some way. What can be better than that? What can make you smile more than hearing those words?

I hope to do that for the rest of my life. We can only hope that my brain stays imaginative and that my fingers can always work quickly on a keyboard.

Tonight, I want to step out of my comfort zone and invite you to check out my work. Know that, since most of you are complete strangers, this was a tough one for me to do. I’m nervous of what you will think, but I am also excited for you to share my worlds with me!

My books range anywhere from children’s books to teen suspense novels to adult fiction. There literally is something for everyone.

My children’s book, Pawl the Police Dog, has been widely popular among police departments across the world. I put my heart and soul into this book and completed each illustration by myself. I hope that you and your children find complete joy in it and learn a few things along the way.

Next are my two teen suspense novels that are apart of a series called “Chillers”. Mr. Parker and The Night In The Mummy’s Dungeon are slightly scary, but not too terrifying that your children won’t go to sleep at night. I wrote both of these in just the 7th grade.

The next teen novel is pure fantasy. Your teens will venture with elves, goblins, evil snakes and other unique creatures through vast wildernesses and rivers, in hopes of finding a large treasure. It teaches them the true value of friendship, leadership and working as a team. It is called The Golden Triangles. I wrote this long novel in the 8th grade.

My adult fiction books are A Tale of Love and Alexandria. A Tale of Love is a beautiful love story that begins tragically but ends with a perfect miracle. It will take you through tears and happiness all in one sitting. It truly is my favorite book that I have written thus far. The last one that I will describe is Alexandria. I wrote Alexandria for a short story contest earlier this year and it has simply exploded as a short novel. It is extremely vivid and sad, but one of the best that I have ever written. I promise, promise, promise that you will not regret purchasing it!

I hope that someone out there finds my stories interesting or inspiring. I thank each and every one of you for taking the time to read my blogs. You don’t know how much it means to me.

If you wish to check out my books, I have placed the link to each of them below. Remember to click on the link, then click on the picture of the book. It will take you to the Amazon page where the listing is.

Again, thank you, thank you, and thank you again. You are amazing.

Much love

xoxo, Author Girl.

Link to my author page:

http://www.amazon.com/author/lynnsespencer

Links to my books:

Pawl the Police Dog

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Mr. Parker

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A Night In The Mummy’s Dungeon

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The Golden Triangles

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A Tale of Love

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Alexandria

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