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May 10, 2013

Favorite Spring Nail Polishes

For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you know how much I love my nail polish and my "#mommymani" :) I thought I would give you my 5 favorite polishes for spring. Let me tell you, this was hard! I love so many colors. And after I picked my 5, I realized how similar some of them were. :)

*note* I absolutely love Essie polishes. They don't chip easily, the colors are extremely pigmented and they have tons of colors to choose from. They are a little pricy, though, but worth the extra few dollars.

First: (In no particular order) is Peach Daiquiri by Essie - This is a gorgeous coral-y pinky peach color. Yes, that's a lot of colors in one but it is just delightful!

Second: Meet me at Sunset by Essie - a true deep orange. This color makes me dream of sitting in a lounge chair on the beach watching the sunset. Peaceful.

Third: Mamba by Essie - this is a good nude type color for olive skin. A lot of nudes are way too light and make my fingers look ashen, this one is perfect. Has a slight peach tint to it.

Fourth: Bubblebath by OPI - This one is a little light for my skin tone, so I only wear one light coat. But it is a beautiful pale pink. My girls love this color. *sidenote* this is the color Giada De'Laurentiis wears on her cooking show. :)

Fifth: Green with Envy by Maybelline - I had a hard time finding a true mint colored polish and let's face it, it's spring 2013, the color of the season is mint! This is a beautiful color. A true mint with good coverage. The quality is not as great as Essie, but for a trendy color it works great.

What are your favorite nail polishes for spring?! 

May 9, 2013

Mother's Day

I had debated whether or not to write this post. But then I realized...there are so many blended families that God may use this to inspire someone. I pray he uses this. :)

I will be married to my wonderful husband 7 years this December. I can not believe how fast time flies. It seems like yesterday. When we first began dating, his daughters were 3 and 5 (the youngest had turned 3 just a couple weeks before) I couldn't wait to dive in and be the best step mother to those girls! I knew from the beginning that I would never want to cross my boundaries as a step mom. I read book after book.....Here are a few I read: (click the title to be re-directed)

I was desperate to be a good step mom and to fulfill the "motherly" need while at their dad's. I was determined not to be the evil stepmother. Stepmothers in every movie are portrayed as evil, cruel, and mean. Children sometimes go into a blended marriage thinking that is how it is and there is nothing they can do. It saddens me first and foremost that children even have to deal with being in a blended family, but also that their views are skewed by the media and entertainment. I can't imagine how hard it was on the girls, a new woman coming into their lives. Who is she? What is she here for? Isn't it just fine the way we have it? 

So I read...and read. I filled my mind with so many tips, to-do's, and what-not-to-do's that I was so confused! What I really needed to do was give it to God. I know God blesses blended families and I am so thankful he placed his hand on mine. 

Giving my family situation to God was hard. After all, Tony is my second husband. We were not the "typical" Christian family. I'm going to have to do this on my own, is what I thought. It honestly took several years of me attempting this before I finally handed it over. Several hard years. I cried, we argued, I sometimes resented the kids. Shouldn't this be easier?!?! When I finally laid it at the foot of the cross, I realized it's not my burden to carry! How light I felt! The girls loved me, I knew that, I loved them. It's not my job to try to make their life perfect at my house. It's my job to love them and teach them and let them know I support them. When I handed it to God, my life, my marriage, my role as a step mother improved. I began loving my life more than ever before.

Now on to Mother's day. Mother's day is a day I have struggled with every single year. If I had a child when I married Tony, I'm sure it would be different. But being a childless stepmother was very tough. I was very resentful on Mother's day. Lord, forgive me. My thoughts were, I have the girls 50% of the time, my husband works late hours, so it's just me....I do EVERYTHING! I take them to doctors and dentists and school. I do their laundry, read them stories, feed them, help with homework. And then, Mother's day rolled around. No recognition from the outside world....yep, that's what I was looking for. The world. Now let me add this, the girls' mother ALWAYS made sure I was recognized. She makes sure the girls call me. One year, she made the most beautiful plant with the girls pictures along the outside. I am so blessed to be able to co-parent with such a fabulous woman. But in my resentful heart, that wasn't enough. This is something I struggled with so hard...and still the devil sometimes puts it in my mind again. I give hugs to the step moms out there. Give it to God. Don't try to do it on your own. Find another stepmom, she understands. (one who doesn't put down her husband or his first wife or the kids...this is hard to find, pray that God will send someone into your life)

When I gave it to God, the burden of Mother's day was lifted. It was still hard. I will not lie. It was hard because of the babies I had miscarried. It was still hard I stand up with all the other mothers at church or do I stay seated? But it was easier, because I knew God knew my heart. He held my hand. He comforted me. 

Now comes Mother's Day 2013. I told you all of the before so you would understand how incredible excited I am for Mother's day this year. This year I have a child...I have a little God created being that loves me, that will call me "mommy", that needs me and depends on me. I will say proudly on Mother's day that I am a mommy! This year is so special to me, after 7 years, Mother's day (even though it is just one day) will hold the most special place in my heart. I love you, Tyler. And I am proud, honored, and blessed to be your mommy. Thank you, God, for trusting me enough to raise your small angel for his time on earth. Thank you also, for trusting me to help raise these two beautiful girls. 

To those mothers who remain childless and are burdened by it. Give it to God. Ask him to wash the resentfulness away and to replace it with the joy of being someone's stepmother. After all, being a stepmother is so very rewarding. I pray that God will wrap his arms around you this Mother's day. You are a mommy, not in the traditional sense, but those children love and depend on you. Many hugs.

Happy Mother's day to all the mommies and step mommies out there!