October Progress | November Goals 2018

October Progress | November Goals 2018

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

Hi, friend. How are you doing?

How are you really doing? We’re officially in the final two months of 2018. The holidays, the gatherings, the meals, the presents, the hectic schedules, the joy, the stress. It’s all coming and I couldn’t be more excited!

It’s these seasons — crazy, busy, full speed ahead — that I’m especially grateful for my PowerSheets. They keep me focused on what really matters and encourage me to take the next right step. I’m not sure what my October would have looked like without them, but I made great progress with them…

October Progress

Monthly Goals

  • Last 90 Days Challenge: Eric and I have been doing Rachel and Dave Hollis’ #Last90Days challenge. This challenge focuses on five areas: wake up 1 hour early, workout for at least 30 mins, drink half your body weight in oz of water, give up one food category you know isn’t good, write down 10 things you’re grateful for. As you can imagine, each day hasn’t been perfect, but I’m being more mindful which makes a difference.
  • Add $2,000 to savings — budget communication: We went above and beyond this goal, yay! We still have a ways to go toward our big goal, but every bit adds up and it feels really good to make progress.
  • Contentment Challenge: Moving this to November.
  • Parade of Homes — represent well: Parade of Homes went so well! A lot of people visited our model and had great feedback about our floorplan and design. Although my particular model didn’t win an award, three of our company’s homes did. It was fun to be a part of.
  • Growth at work — 3 sales: Make that four sales for October! Four soon-to-be owners of beautiful homes. Yay!
  • Simplify a space: Eric decluttered and organized the garage. We both worked on the storage closet underneath our stairs. Simplifying these spaces has made such a difference in how I feel when I’m in them.
  • Celebrate + Share PowerSheets Launch: The launch was wonderful! So many friends getting their very own set of PowerSheets for 2019, which means so many lives will be impacted for the better! You’re not too late. Grab yours and join us in the intentional fun!
  • Create “Facts of Life” book: This is an idea I got from the podcast, Happier with Gretchen Rubin. You take a binder and put all your important life documents in it (latest insurance policy, loan documents, birth certificate, life insurance policy, mortgage information, etc). It’s all in one place so it’s easy to locate and use.
  • Create “Personal Timeline”: Also moving this to November.
  • Dream about future: Eric and I have been dreaming together and it has been so much fun! Dreaming about our future home, future family, future career directions. It helps us to get on the same page and set goals together.

Weekly Goals

  • Speak life to/over Eric — Achieved 4/5 weeks
  • Be an encouragement — Achieved 5/5 weeks
  • Blog post published + shared intentionally — Achieved 5/5 weeks
  • Use my voice — boldly + mindfully — Achieved 5/5 weeks
  • Rest + care — Achieved 5/5 weeks
  • Cultivate healthy phone boundaries — Achieved 5/5 weeks

Cultivating healthy phone boundaries has been so impactful on my days and peace of mind. I’m giving myself time and space from my apps which I really needed. Before I was spending too much time scrolling my phone when I really should have been doing other things like sleeping or spending time with Eric. It honestly felt a bit out of control, but I didn’t know how to fix it. I talked all about cultivating these boundaries in a recent post, so if this is an area you struggle with too, be encouraged here.

Daily Goals

My faith has been a major focus in my day to day as you can see from these daily goals. By digging into God’s Word and being in communication with Him, I have felt more grounded and capable of handling the crazy. Journaling my thoughts and prayers has been therapeutic. I don’t always feel like doing it because it does take time and I have to focus, but I’m always so glad I did.

November Goals

Monthly Goals

  • Last 90 Days Challenge
  • Budget communication — Add $3,000 to savings
  • Contentment Challenge
  • Progress at work — 3 sales
  • Simplify a space
  • Create a “Personal Timeline”
  • Research/plan Rise Weekend
  • Hospitality with our Small Group
  • Successful realtor event
  • Plan a holiday get together

Weekly Goals

  • Dream about future
  • Speak life to/over Eric
  • Blog post published + shared
  • Use my voice well
  • Rest + care
  • Cultivate healthy phone boundaries

Daily Goals

It may seem like there’s not much time left to make things happen. But there is. You don’t have to wait for January 1st to start going after your goals. You can start right now! Get that positive momentum going so you can begin 2019 even further ahead.

What will you be making progress on in November?


October 2018 Round Up

October 2018 Round Up

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here. I appreciate you shopping with me! 

Happy Halloween, friend!

I know that Halloween comes at the very end of October. I know that Halloween has been coming for a while thanks to the constant showings of Hocus Pocus (my fave!). But it’s still kinda hard for me to wrap my mind around October being over. It came and went so quickly!

That’s the same story every month — I’m always surprised how quickly the days and weeks pass. A lot happened this month and there’s wonderful things to come, so lets recap it, shall we??

3 things I’m excited about

  1. The holidays: This doesn’t need much explanation, right? This is my favorite time of the year. So much joy, celebration, and time with loved ones. This year we’ll be doing a Friendsgiving dinner with our small group — already looking forward to the food and fellowship. It’s another opportunity to make memories with family and friends. I’m here for it.
  2. Flawless Facial Hair Remover: This one is bit weird, but I’m all about products that make my life easier. Thank you, Ulta, for this incredible tool. I know we don’t like to talk about it, but ladies, we all have that bit of peach fuzz along our chin and lip that keep our makeup from looking flawless. If you don’t, continue reading. Ok, now the ones that are being honest — you need this! It’s so easy to use and works amazingly! Ulta currently has a 20% off coupon on their website through Nov 3rd, so go grab it!
  3. Election Day: I’m not one for politics, but as I get older, I understand more and more the power and privilege of using my voice. I know we won’t all agree on candidates and policies, which is totally fine. But no matter what you think is “right,” exercise your right to vote! I’m also just really ready for the political commercials and mailers to take a break 🙂

Quote I’ve been meditating on

“When you focus on the good, the good gets better.”

This quote is gold and definitely something I’ve been trying to improve on. It can be easy to focus on the negative — the things that didn’t go your way, the things that annoy you, the things you want to change. And then it seems like that list can keep getting longer. The same is true of the positive. If you keep looking for good things, you’ll keep finding them. It’s all about perspective and contentment. ❤

Who or what I’m adoring


The 2019 PowerSheets collection finally launched October 24th! They are absolutely stunning!!! 2019 will be my third year utilizing PowerSheets to help me be intentional in setting and achieving goals and it just keeps getting better.

The Cultivate What Matters team make adjustments every year to improve the incredible tool and I love what they’ve done! I talked all about my PowerSheets and gave a little sneak peek in my previous post here. If you’re anything like me and can benefit from guidance and encouragement when it comes to goal setting, the PowerSheets are for you!

Favorite memory from October

Aside from the usual, the major focus at work in October was the Parade of Homes. This is an annual event done over 3 weekends where builders in the Triangle area can showcase their homes and design — it’s the largest open house of the year! The public is invited to visit the homes in the Parade to learn about the latest updates in design and home building. It’s so fun to show off our beautiful homes! This year my company had six homes in the Parade and the model in my community was one of them.

The homes get judged and there is a Gala to present the awards. The Parade of Homes Gala was my favorite memory in October because it was an awesome chance for Eric and I to dress up and celebrate the fruits of our team’s hard work. It was even more special because the event was held at my alma mater, NC State University. I even wore the perfect color: red.

I love embracing the opportunities to enjoy my industry and get to know others within it. I try to say yes to the different events and this one was well worth it!

A good lesson I learned

Your words are powerful.

This has been the topic of sermons at church for the last several weeks and it’s working in me. I love words and I definitely believe in their power, but until recently I didn’t fully understand how powerful they are. Anything good or bad that has happened is most likely due to the chosen string of words.

Because of this teaching and realization, I have tried to be more careful with my words. I’m striving to use them to build others up through encouragement and truth. I’m also working on the way I speak to myself. It doesn’t have to be verbalized to make an impact. I challenge you to take a look at the words you use and see if you can improve them to speak more life in yourself and those around you.

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
-Proberbs 18:21

In November…

I’m saying no to: comparison.

I’m saying yes to: gratitude.


My #1 Goal Setting Tool

My #1 Goal Setting Tool

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here. I personally use and adore the PowerSheets and many products from the Cultivate What Matters Shop. I greatly appreciate you shopping with my link! 

Have you ever found something that you never knew you needed, but once you had it you couldn’t imagine life without it?

For me, that is the PowerSheets.

That may sound a bit dramatic to feel that way about a beautifully bound intentional goal setting planner, but if you own a set you totally understand.

When the happy mail arrives

If you’ve been around here for a little while, you’ve surely seen my monthly posts about my progress and goals using the incredible PowerSheets.

I have always been a fan of planners and writing things down. For as long as I can remember, I’ve believed in the power of goals and the importance of setting them. Before the PowerSheets came into my life, I would write down my goals, sure, but they didn’t always have a true sense of purpose. I felt a little lost in setting them, so they weren’t as meaningful as I would hope.

My well-loved PowerSheets through the years: 2017, 2018, 2019

Last year, 2017, was my first experience with PowerSheets. I could hardly wait to start the prep work and get my goals ready! Although it was challenging and it certainly took a good amount of time to thoughtfully work through and prepare my goals, I was hooked. I finally had a vision for my goals and goal setting in general.

My PowerSheets feels like a cheerleader I can carry around with me. She encourages me to reach farther and picks me up when a goal isn’t accomplished or a dream changes direction.

Because of my work in my PowerSheets, I think about my goals, my time, and my daily actions differently. I’m better (and improving) at letting things go that don’t serve me in this season. I’m understanding it’s okay to say no because that means I can say yes to what’s more important. I’m learning and experiencing each day that little by little progress adds up!

I am a Cultivator.

I strive to cultivate beautiful things in my life.

Health and wellness.
Financial peace.
Success at work.

You know what the best part is? We don’t have to do this alone. You can be a Cultivator too and you can start right now. Do you need some guidance? Start with your very own set of PowerSheets. You can do things in these final few months of 2018 that will set up 2019 to be your best year YET!

#1: Order your PowerSheets Oct 24th at 10am EST!

#2: Dig into the work and get messy.

I promise you won’t regret it ❤

What I love most about the PowerSheets is the prep work. These are pages before you even get to setting your goals where you consider what’s working/not working, how different areas of your life are currently, and how you want to grow in the coming year.

The question that always makes me ponder hard and smile at the same time: Where do I want to be when I’m 80? My answer to that question helps me cultivate a life that adds up to 80 year old Rachel’s reality.

It’s hard to say where I would be today without my trusty PowerSheets, but I’m glad I don’t have to know. I believe this amazing tool has allowed me to reach higher and go farther than I would’ve done all on my own. It has helped me to realize goals and go after things that are scary, but ultimately so good!

Friend, if you’re feeling stuck in your goals, it doesn’t have to be that way. There is a community of Cultivators waiting to cheer you on! Grab your goal setting tool and lets dig in.

Will you be grabbing your set of PowerSheets!? Let me know below so we can crush our goals together! Do you have any questions about how to cultivate what matters?


Cultivating healthy phone boundaries

Cultivating healthy phone boundaries

We have a powerful tool right at our fingertips: our phone.

It’s an amazing source for connection, business, and entertainment. It’s also an unfortunate source of distraction as I’m sure we’ve all experienced. How many hours have you wasted mindlessly scrolling Instagram or checking your email for the 104th time? For me, it’s way too many to count.

I love those apps on my phone, but there’s a time and a place for using and enjoying them. I knew something about my habit needed to change when I was beginning and ending my day on my phone. That kept me up too late and took away precious time I could/should be using for other more important things.

Boundaries needed to be determined. 

The boundaries have been set and my relationship with my phone is so much healthier. To help make the boundary setting easier for you, I’m sharing nine tips that I used to make it happen.

Use an actual alarm clock, not your phone.

I’m not as self disciplined as I need to be first thing in the morning. If I use my phone as my alarm clock, it’s way too easy to just open it up and play with it in bed. That’s not how I want to use my first moments of the day. Spend the money and purchase an alarm clock — it’s well worth it.

Charge your phone away from your bed.

Since your phone is no longer your alarm clock, you can move it away from your nightstand. Put your phone to “bed” at your designated time and let it charge there. Ideally this is outside of your bedroom, but at the very least across your room. Removing it from your immediate space will keep you from mindlessly using it.

Set and respect time limits.

I highly recommend limiting your screen time. I’ve found it’s easiest for me when I create concrete “rules” (like no phone after 10pm) because it takes the thought out of it. Set time limits that work best for you. The blue light emitted from our devices negatively affects our sleep, so take that into consideration when choosing your phone’s bedtime.

Apple released a built in app called Screen Time and it’s the best! You can set time limits for certain apps, big ones for me being social networking and productivity (apps like email). It tracks your usage and will actually “lock” apps if you’ve gone over your limit. I have my time limit set from 10pm-10am so that I’m giving myself plenty of time at night and in the morning to take care of myself and have a break from my phone. If you have an iPhone, this is a must! I’ve heard of other apps and websites that do similar functions, but I love that it’s just built into the phone’s software.


Clean up your digital life. Are you following someone you don’t enjoy seeing? Unfollow. Are you getting emails that you always delete? Unsubscribe. Are there apps on your phone that you never use? Delete. You’ll spend less time on your phone when you’re not having to sort through so much extra stuff.

Turn off push notifications.

If you’re anything like me, you feel a sudden need to check your phone when a notification comes through. The point of push notifications is to grab your attention and make you click through to whatever it’s notifying you about. Use your phone on your own time and desire, so say goodbye to those push notifications. You can check in when you want and the notifications will still be there.

Practice social media/phone free time.

It’s a great habit to practice social media free days and phone free time. For my husband and I, date nights are generally phone free. We don’t mind a quick Instagram story to share something cool we’re doing or grabbing a photo to document the fact that we dressed up. BUT we don’t want to be the couple that’s spending their whole dinner with faces in the phones. The best things in life are experienced away from our phones.

Schedule posts in advance.

You might be someone that runs a small business and absolutely needs to use your phone — I totally get it! Try creating and scheduling your posts (social media, blog, podcast, etc) in advance and then set aside some time to engage on that post once it’s live. You’ll be more intentional with your time and actually free yourself from feeling like you need to be glued to your phone.

Enjoy phone free hobbies.

Get outside. Read a physical book. Play a board or card game. Take your dog on a walk. Put the phone down and enjoy. And don’t feel the pressure to pick up the phone to share about what you’re doing with all your friends. It still happened even if you didn’t share it.

Seek accountability.

Accountability can be with another person or with your phone itself. The Screen Time app I was talking about provides a huge source of accountability for me. It literally “locks” my apps at a certain time so I can have downtime. It’s helpful to share your goals for healthy boundaries with someone else because they may have good ideas to overcome your struggles and can encourage you to be phone free when you’re together. I believe accountability is always a good thing when we’re talking about something we want to improve.

There ya have it! Nine tangible tips and my favorite tool to help you cultivate healthy phone boundaries. Is this an area you struggle in? Which tip will you implement first?


Flourishing Contentment: The Challenge

Flourishing Contentment: The Challenge

Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want, but the realization of how much you already have.

I have found the best way for me to overcome a bad habit and cultivate a good habit is to participate in a challenge. Sometimes that’s a challenge that I’m doing alone. Sometimes that’s a challenge I’m doing with others. Regardless, I love having a goal to focus on and a set time period to push for it.

It can be overwhelming to try to overhaul our life for forever, but we can make changes for a set period of time and see how it works. Usually it sticks or at least moves me closer towards the ultimate goal.

Spending money used to be a major bad habit. I would mindlessly spend (usually on a credit card), but it was never fulfilling. The moment of opening a new Amazon package would bring a moment of happiness and then that would fade. I’ve come a long way, but I’ve noticed that shopping still has grips on my heart and happiness. The social media comparison certainly doesn’t help.

I’ve been wanting to do a challenge like this for a while, but I always thought “oh this isn’t the best time.” As with anything, there will never be a perfect time, so might as well go for it! So here we are: The Flourishing Contentment Challenge.

To put it simply, this is 30 days of no new stuff and minimizing the stuff you already have in order to make space for peace, joy, and contentment. I was inspired by Nancy Ray’s Contentment Challenge and The Minimalists’ Minimalism Game and thought it would be brilliant to blend the two and put my flourishing spin on it.

The Commitment

  • I commit to not purchasing anything new for 30 days. I am blessed and already have all the things I need. 
  • I commit to decluttering my home little by little for 30 days. I am blessed and have way more than I need.

Read the guidelines below for more information about how we are going to make these two commitments happen.

The Guidelines

  • Determine your why for completing this challenge
    It doesn’t have to be anything grand (although it can be), but having a why will help carry you through the 30 days. It can be something simple like “I want to see if I can do it” or something deep like “I use shopping as a way of coping with stress or sadness and I want to break the chains.” This is totally up to you, but take some time to think about what’s drawing you to this challenge.
  • Prepare in advance
    Prepare your heart and your actual space. Do any last minute shopping. This is not a last minute splurge shopping trip (we’re breaking up with that habit, remember?), but an opportunity to get items you actually need. If there are others living in your home, have a discussion with them about your intentions and goals for this challenge. Set a date to begin and put it on the calendar.
  • Choose something inspirational to consume
    This may be a book, podcast, blog, or YouTube channel. Whatever you choose, try not to purchase it. Maybe it’s something you already own or you can borrow from a friend. The library is an incredible resource! Podcasts, blogs, and YouTube videos are free. Some of my favorites are The Joy of Less by Francine Jay (book), A Simplified Life by Emily Ley (book), and The Rachel Cruze Show (YouTube).
  • Gifts + necessities are okay
    Please continue to purchase food and needed items from the grocery store. Buy your mother a thoughtful gift for her birthday. The point is not to completely cut down your lifestyle or refrain from celebrating loved ones, but to reset your heart when it comes to stuff. With this challenge in mind and the shift it causes, I can pretty much guarantee you will shop differently.
  • Replace your tendency to shop with something fulfilling
    When we’re trying to cultivate a new habit, it’s important to replace the “bad” with something “good.” We’re taking away shopping from our life for 30 days, so that’s going to leave a hole that will be filled. Lets fill it intentionally. This may be a hobby, prayer, journaling, a walk outside. Whatever sounds enjoyable and fulfilling to you.
  • Simplify your space
    Each day of the challenge you will declutter an item, but this will increase each day. For example, on day 1 of the challenge you will declutter 1 item; day 2 = 2 items; day 3 = 3 items; day 9 = 9 items; day 30 = 30 items. Make sense? Anything, big or small, can go! Donate, sell, or trash.

The less clutter, the more breathing room you have for what matters. -Emily Ley

Are you ready to truly cultivate peace and contentment? Let me know in the comments below when you will begin this challenge. I believe it has the power to shift your heart and create a happier home.


September Progress | October Goals 2018

September Progress | October Goals 2018

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

Happy October, friends. I love this season more and more as I get older. Summer is certainly fun, but fall has a special kind of magic. I’m a fan of changes: weather, seasons, focus. It feels fresh and I’m a fan.

We’re officially within the last 90 days of 2018 — can you believe it!? My PowerSheets help me stay laser focused on what’s most important which becomes even more crucial as we glide into the holiday season. I feel good about the progress I made in September and I’m fired up about the goals I have set for October.

September Progress

Monthly Goals

  • Budget communicationWe’re in a good rhythm and still going strong. We’re working towards our savings goals and are making good progress already.
  • Read book: I actually read two books in September. Food Freedom Forever by Melissa Hartwig since I had just finished my second round of Whole30. I also read Of Mess and Moxie by Jen Hatmaker. I enjoyed both for different reasons. Both encouraged me — the first more practically and the second through stories and good truth.
  • Friend date: Being intentional with my friends and cultivating relationships is important to me. I understand it’s not going to fall into my lap, so we have to make an effort to reach out and then follow through on the plans we make. Coffee and dinner dates are so sweet with girlfriends.
  • Simplify a space: It’s overwhelming to make a goal to “declutter the house.” Like when would that ever get done?? Writing out all the different spaces in our home where clutter accumulates (closets, drawers, cabinets, rooms, etc) and then choosing a space to focus on makes it possible. In September I tackled our hall closet upstairs and my office. Little by little progress adds up in every area.
  • Growth + progress at work: I’m learning and growing a little bit each day. There’s of course still so much I don’t know, but I’m learning.
  • Nurture plants: I was worried about how my outdoor plants would do during the hurricane, but luckily they all did pretty well. My gorgeous yellow/pink potted plant got wind blown since I put them back out too early, but I think they’ll be okay. Plant mom in progress!
  • Begin new small group season well: Our small group is back up and running since our summer break. It’s so sweet to have this weekly gathering in our lives again. It also encourages me to go deeper in weekly sermons since we’re doing a message based study. All around good stuff.
  • Create healthy phone boundaries: I’m going to do a whole post on this soon since I think it’s such a struggle spot for so many of us. Although I wasn’t good at actually implementing, I created some phone boundaries that I want to exist in my life. Now to work on cultivating them.

Weekly Goals

  • Be curious — ask good questions — Achieved 4/4 weeks
  • Speak up for myself — Achieved 4/4 weeks
  • Rest — do nothing — Achieved 3/4 weeks
  • Blog post published x2 — Achieved 4/4 weeks
  • Mindful spending — Achieved 4/4 weeks
  • Life giving routine — Achieved 4/4 weeks

Using my voice well has been a theme lately. Using my voice to ask good questions, to speak up for myself, and to share my thoughts and encouragement right here through written words. I’m learning about how our words have the power of life or death. I want mine to bring life. Doing this well doesn’t happen in a month. It’ll take more time to be mindful of it and practice. It’s worth the time it takes because I believe it’s so important to use the voice and platform we’ve been entrusted with well.

Daily Goals

  • Pray with E — Achieved 26/30 days
  • Love E well — Achieved 8/24 days
  • Bible plan — Achieved 30/30 days
  • WTW (Write the Word) Journal — Achieved 27/30 days
  • Dental care — Achieved 30/30 days

Loving Eric well was a challenge we did in September inspired by Rachel & Dave Hollis. I’m not going into detail here, but it definitely challenged us. Although we were far from perfect with it (33% accomplishment), it still brought us closer and improved our communication. That was eye-opening to me. Even when I’m not perfect, even when I “miss” way more than half, goodness can still come from it. It’s easy to look back and see how far off you were, but what if you looked back to see how far you have came? 

October Goals

Monthly Goals

  • Last 90 Days Challenge
  • Add $2,000 to savings — budget communication
  • Contentment Challenge
  • Parade of Homes — represent well
  • Growth at work — 3 sales
  • Simplify a space
  • Celebrate + Share PowerSheets Launch
  • Create “Facts of Life” book
  • Create “Personal Timeline”
  • Dream about future

Weekly Goals

  • Speak life to/over Eric
  • Be an encouragement
  • Blog post published + shared intentionally 
  • Use my voice — boldly + mindfully
  • Rest + care
  • Cultivate healthy phone boundaries

Daily Goals

Your steam may be running low, but don’t let all that motivation and intention drift away until New Year’s Day. There’s nothing special about January 1st (except that it’s my birthday, so that’s pretty special). Your life is happening right now. Each day is a new opportunity, lets use it.

What will you do with these last 90 days? We are pushing forward together! ❤


September 2018 Round Up

September 2018 Round Up

This post contains affiliate links. See affiliate disclaimer here.

We are officially moving into the final quarter of 2018 — can you believe it!? September felt a little wild, especially with a major hurricane thrown into the middle of it. I hope that your month was productive, restful, and fabulous! Lets do a little recap of September!

3 things I’m excited about

  1. Football is back! I know it’s been back for a bit, but we finally made it to a NCSU football game, so it feels real! I have so many fun memories involving games (partly thanks to the tailgating) and I love being able to make more. We weren’t able to make it to any last year, so hopefully we can do better this season. Go Wolfpack! Go Panthers!
  2. Parade of Homes: The Triangle Parade of Homes kicks off in October. Our model home is a part of the parade, so that’s going to mean lots of people visiting our community. Hoping our beautiful model in WoodCreek will bring home the gold!
  3. PowerSheets 2019 Launch: If you’ve been around here for more than 5 minutes, you have heard of PowerSheets. In case you’re new, it’s essentially a goal planner. It’s one of my favorite resources ever because it encourages me to really dig into what matters most to me. It has been a catalyst for great changes in my life and I cannot say enough good things. The 2019 PowerSheets will be launching October 24th! They sell out every year, so I highly recommend you grab yours ASAP!

Quote I’ve been meditating on

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.” -1 Corinthians 16:13-14

The Word is full of truth and wisdom that I want to carry with me. This verse in particular stuck out to me during my quiet time and I thought it would be the perfect words to meditate on for this month. Or really any month.

Be on your guard.
Stand firm in the faith.
Be courageous.
Be strong.
Do everything in love. 

I want my life to be an example of this, especially the last part. If you do everything in love you can’t go wrong. ❤

Who or what I’m adoring

Mesh laundry bags

This is a very adult thing to be excited about, but hey, that’s where I’m at. And I’m all about little hacks that make life easier. Have you ever put something into the dryer that you didn’t mean to because you missed it when moving clothes over? It used to happen to me all the time, specifically with black clothes cause they just blend together. I would have to carefully move over one piece at a time to pull anything out that needed to be air dried, but of course I would miss something. Mesh laundry bags to the rescue! Simply put the air-dry clothes into the bags, wash as normal and then pull the bags out when it’s time to move the load over and hang up the clothes. How did I live so long without these??

Favorite memory from September

Hurricane Florence came through the Carolinas in mid-September. They were originally calling for the eye of the storm to go right over Raleigh (where we live), but the storm shifted and we got minimal damage, thank God. Many parts of our state were not as lucky, but it has been so amazing to see the community come together. People everywhere have seeking out ways to donate and serve to support the hurricane victims. My favorite memory from September was volunteering for Operation Airdrop with our small group.

We were scheduled to meet for small group as usual, but decided last minute our time would be better spent as a group at RDU collecting and preparing donations. I’m so glad we did! Volunteer pilots donated their time and planes to fly tons of food, water, and supplies to the areas that needed it most. So many communities weren’t accessible by road because of flooding and damage, so this was crucial. We were able to truly live out our church’s mission of loving people where they are. Ironically I also reconnected with a sorority sister who was a couple years ahead of me — what are the chances!? It feels good to serve others and do it alongside awesome people. We are still praying for our state and the rebuilding of communities and lives that are now taking place.

A good lesson I learned

Serve others however you can. It all adds up and makes a difference.

We all have gifts and resources that we can use to positively impact others. I can’t help everyone and fix every need, but when we come together, our efforts add up. You don’t have to wait for a tragedy or natural disaster — there are people all around that need you. Think small like a smile, conversation, or hug. Think big like a financial donation or providing a car to a family in need. No man is an island… we need each other. Serve and love — it’ll never be too small to make a difference.

In October…

I’m saying no to: isolation and loneliness.

I’m saying yes to: loving my people well.