Quality Time

After a long grueling week of work my husband and I decided to take a day trip this past Saturday.  It was spur of the moment, but was an awesome trip.  Every couple needs some quality time together and this was our time.  We decided we were going to North Carolina and wanted to go to the mountains, just wasn’t sure where.  We settled on Black Mountain, North Carolina.  It’s a quaint little town with several shops.  We decided to stop at the visitor’s center to see what trails were around there.  The guy working led us to Old Fort, NC where we hiked Catawba Falls Trail.

This trail was off the beaten path.  We had to take a side road down to the end of another road.  If the guy at the visitor’s center had not told us about it, we never would have known about it.  When we first walked up to the information area there were warning signs of bears and what to do.  Oh my!  Bears!  This could be good!  The signs mentioned walking in groups and if we saw claw marks or even spotted a bear we needed to start singing and making noise.  I really wanted to see a bear….well from a distance of course.

With that notice we started on our hike.  The hike did not start out well.  Let’s just say there were some rude people, a tense husband and wife, and some air that needed to be cleared between my husband and me.  After that, we were good to go.  The hike became very enjoyable and was exactly what the doctor ordered.  When I am out in nature it is so easy to see all of God’s beautiful creations.  I started snapping pictures of trees, leaves, rocks, and what we think was a tiny cave on the other side of the water.

After recalling the end to an enjoyable day I could not help but think there are so many times when we let our agenda cloud our ability to see things for what they are and see the beauty in it.  I personally have been at my wits end with my day job which is somehow turning into a day and night job.  Last week I only posted two blog posts because I was working late at night almost every day.  As much as I want my blog to take off, I still have to help provide for my family; however, this doesn’t mean I do not deserve a little play time too.

To be honest I have taken the entire weekend off from my day job.  I brought a stack of work home measuring about 8 inches high.  I haven’t even touched it yet on this Labor Day weekend.  I can honestly say I have enjoyed every minute of this weekend with my family.  Spending quality time with my husband is exactly what he and I needed to keep us going.  We have both been working crazy hours and with that comes exhaustion and stress and well…you know what that can cause!

Before my husband and I got married we loved to go hiking.  We hiked up until about two years after we got married from there life took over and we let everything else consume us.  With the adoption, my approach was we can’t spend any extra money which meant traveling was out.  Wrong!!!  We just needed to get back to the basics.  Moving forward my husband and I have decided that at least once a month or every two months we would take a day trip somewhere and just spend time together.  Making memories is what it’s about, not spending money or trying to work ourselves to death.  There comes a point when we have to step back and realize God gave us this life for a reason.  We can let work and everything else consume us or we can step back once in a while and let God open our eyes and be awed at His beauty and what he has created.  We all need that breathe of fresh air to help us realign our focus and priorities.

What gives you that breathe of fresh air?

In my next article find out what else my husband and I got into while we enjoyed our quality time together in the mountains of North Carolina.

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Until next time!

Don’t Lose Your Joy

Don't Lose Your Joy-Photo 2In church today the message was about being happy in the place you are in.  I feel more people need to hear this.  I know I needed to hear this.  Too many times we let things get to us and we make mountains out of mole hills.  The scripture referenced was Philippians 1:18.  The message hit home because of the struggles I have gone through especially with infertility.

It is so easy to be happy when things are going in our favor.  We sing happy songs, we whittle, and we smile big.  I personally whistle when things are going well.

What happens when things do not go as planned?  Do I have you thinking now?  Think back to the last time something did not go as planned or maybe someone hurt you…yeah now you’re thinking.  How did you react in that situation?  Could people still see your joy or could they see your bitterness?  This is where many of us will do that hard swallow where you know I’m talking about you.  That’s what I did in church today.  It’s not easy to be joyful in times where we seem to be down on our luck.

I have two life events that I thought of during the message.  In one event I was done wrong and some people really close to me hurt me.  The other event is my battle with infertility.

In the first event where I was hurt by two people close to me I will tell you it is not easy to deal with a situation like this.  I will be honest in saying that I let bitterness overtake this situation recently.  As most of us have heard “two wrongs don’t make a right.”  We have to stop letting bitterness take over our emotions and situations.  When we let bitterness in we let numerous other things in like hatred or the feeling of revenge.  If I let the bitterness stay in this situation nothing will get accomplished and it will probably drive a wedge between myself and the others involved.  Going forward I need to bring joy back into this situation.

The other event is my battle with infertility.  My husband and I have been fighting this for a while.  Let me tell you infertility is more serious than some people make it out to be.  Infertility can mess with your mind, emotions, and it’s already messing with your body.  When I first started going through all of the infertility stuff I felt horrible, miserable, and less of a woman.  There were times where it did affect my marriage because of my emotions.  I was in the valley and in a rough part of my life; however, I turned to God.  Thankfully, I have a husband who is supportive, talks me through things, and helps to keep me grounded.  He also showed me a great deal of compassion during this time.  There have been moments during my infertility journey where again I let bitterness in.  Let me tell you one of the most painless things is when you and your husband have been trying for several years to get pregnant and someone very close to you tells you they are pregnant.  I didn’t know what to do accept to cry.  It’s a feeling I cannot begin to describe.  The best way I can put it is as we say in the country you feel like someone sucker punched you.  It takes the breath and words right out of you.  I did overcome this and actually became very excited for them.

During this infertility obstacle my husband and I have had many ups and downs, but through it all I would like to think that we kept our heads held high and we’ve learned how to bring the joy back into our situation and we continue to look towards God.  We’ve left the bitterness out to dry.  We are finding our joy through adoption.  As we continue through our adoption process we will continue to sing and have joy with each obstacle that we face along the way.  We know God puts us in places to build our faith.

Don’t let bitterness in.  Keep your joy like Paul did in Philippians 1:18.  No matter how many mountains we face God gives us the courage and strength to climb them.  When people can see your joy in the tough times it becomes a testimony for Christ.  We have to realize that some of our biggest obstacles can bring one of our greatest blessings.  Speaking from experience I can tell you that one of mine and my husband’s biggest obstacles of infertility will produce one of our biggest blessings…a new member to our family through adoption.

Keep your joy no matter what comes your way and keep singing your song because no one can sign your song better than you can.


Picture from Pixabay.com