Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Day Four

Its January 4th, and my guess is that there are a few of you who set some pretty well intentioned resolutions and you're finding yourself struggling for a few different reasons. I'm not here to pass judgement or give you a guilt trip, but I am wondering if maybe we could just lean in together for a moment...

One of the habits I set out to change (for good this time, because I've had this resolution many times before) is to wake up early in the morning. To create space in my day just for me and my relationship with God, and to make that such a priority that it comes first thing in the morning.'s the thing. 
I didn't for one second think this would be an easy step to take. I knew there would be a million and one reasons for me to not wake up before the sun, or my children. Things I could easily overcome, but possibly choose not to, and things that seem to be unavoidable obstacles. But, this is what I also know to be so very true and where I rest in confidence... 

I am not pursuing a one way street. I am not the only one seeking to meet someone. This is a two sided relationship. My Heavenly Father is desperately seeking to meet with me as well, and He has the power to move mountains in order to help make that happen. Move mountains, people! Try as he might, the enemy CANNOT defeat this one. I have The Lord, Himself, pursuing me. So regardless of what the circumstances look like or what arrows of deception the enemy flings my way, I rest in knowing that the One I am seeking is bigger than it all. It is with boldness that I attack the morning and run to meet my Father.  

Sunday, January 1, 2017

my word.

Every New Year I see people declaring a word for the year, and every year I think its the most ridiculous thing ever. Until this year. I've joined the masses. Here's where this New Year finds me...

RENEW (v):
To resume (an activity) after an interruption.
  • re-establish (a relationship).
  • repeat (an action or statement).
  • give fresh life or strength to.
  • replace (something that was broken or worn out).

So, why renew?
Because 2017 isn't a time for me to start all over. I don't have plans to make an about-face or complete 180 this year. I don't have outrageous life change in the works, but my heart is certainly renewed. My soul, is different...or quite frankly, I've found it. Small tweaks and changes in habits will no doubt be happening, but that's just life and growth and...well, surface. What's renewed is deep within, so much so that I can't quite explain it. I just know I've found it and it's amazingly alive and beautifully messy and perfectly His.

Because the Lord so purposefully interrupted my life these past few years in order to re-establish our relationship. He very purposefully brought me face to face with some messy stuff and then pursued me through the healing, with the only peace found in His presence. If His hand wasn't so abundantly clear leading up to the hard stuff, I likely wouldn't have trusted Him throughout the long road that followed. I've learned that when God leads your path straight towards the storm, its not by mistake. His ways are perfect. And in my case, sometimes the most growth comes after the storm has settled. That's when God re-established Himself in my life. In the midst of the clean up.

Because I'm not willing to throw out the hardships of the past few years entirely. Don't hear me wrong though, I will not dwell. Not for one second. That's when the enemy wins. But I most certainly will look to give God every bit of glory that He so very much deserves for walking before me, with me, and behind me throughout this season. There have been some incredibly amazing ways I've seen His provision and generous blessing, while also growing me deeply in the midst of using and restoring me.

Because I find myself returning to very similar outward circumstances, but with an entirely different inward spirit. My ministry burn is so strong again. To be used by and for Him, but in a renewed way. I lean on God differently. I understand Him more fully. I rest in Him more completely. This isn't a new year for me, it's a renewed year. A year to return, to pick up again and continue on, to embrace what comes next from a renewed place.

The anticipation is high, y'all!! I can't wait to see how God uses our family in 2017!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Being Squishy

I can tell you right now, this is certainly not one of those "how to lose that baby-weight quick" posts that are in no short supply.

I battled myself after giving birth to our sweet daughter because everything I saw around me was telling me I should be trying to rid myself of all that the quicker, the better! But, what this was also doing was planting into my mind that I shouldn't be happy with my postpartum body. That something was wrong with my newly squishy body and it needed to be fixed as soon as possible. So wearing pj pants all day long was not only easier practically speaking (because who has time for changing clothes?!), but it was also easier mentally because I didn't have to face the inevitable...I was 3 sizes bigger than ever before. Can I pose something? If we can come to grips with the fact that life will never be the same as we know it once we choose to start a family, than I do believe it would do us women a great bit of good to also come to grips with the fact that our bodies will likely not be the same either (even temporarily)....and that's okay!

Look, I'm not one of those people who just wants to sit on a sofa, whoa-is-me, I'm all squishy, let me eat what I want and become lazy. Umm, no... Carrying excess weight over time and maintaining an unhealthy lifestyle can certainly do more harm than good. Being healthy is a good way of life! But, the pressures of new motherhood are immense as is, so add to that body image issues and you might as well feel worthless. When your entire sense of normal has just been flipped upside down, being able to look in the mirror and at least understand your new body and all that it's capable of can bring a sense of pride that is far more motivating than any quick-fix program can provide.

I truly hope that every new mom can come to grips with their postpartum body and learn just how beautiful they really are. Yes, I am still 20 pounds (on a good day) from my pre-pregnancy weight and my body looks far different than how I've ever recognized it before, but I find it hard to get upset about that fact when I realize all that this body has been able to accomplish in just one short year. It's amazing really... I have grown, carried, protected within me, birthed, and now nutritionally sustain another little person. Did you get that!?! Really though..stop and notice just how miraculous a mother's body is. In fact, I think it's beautiful. It is not a burden to carry squish right now and I have not "let myself go" because I choose to recognize that beauty and am not back to normal (whatever that means) in just 3 months. One day, slowly, this squish will begin to fade, and until then I will choose to accept the body that comes with new motherhood and marvel at all it can do.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Growth Spurts and Jesus

If you could only know what today has been, and the day isn't even over....

Brynlee is going through a growth spurt and has been uber fussy, skipping all her naps, and nursing constantly...every hour or more. I had plans to start working out again today and ideally get to the grocery store for some healthy food options to go along with it. Those thoughts are certainly out the window for today. It's probably been the first day I've felt a bit overwhelmed.

I also realized today that it's been weeks since I've made quality time with my God who has blessed me with this little munchkin in the first place. But what's a new mommy to do?!? Skip a feeding and instead try and dive into the word...all while ignoring the screaming baby? Likely not. Feeling a bit desperate in the midst of her fussiness I attempted to at least read a devotion from one hand while trying to hold, pat, and console Bryn with the other. Needless to say that left me more frustrated than anything so I threw up the desperation know the one, don't lie. We've all done it before. You get to the end, throw up the plead (which is likely the first conversation you've initiated with God in days or weeks), then immediately feel Satan's guilt and try your best just to move on.

Thankfully, God gets the victory and all the glory today. After another one of Bryn's many feedings she was in her typical milk drunkenness stupor, so I scooped her into my arms hoping to lull her into a nap. Instead, she woke quickly and started getting fussy yet again. But, I then remembered that just yesterday we spent a few minutes singing worship sings and she loved it. She lay in my arms, eyes wide, smiling at me while we worshiped together. I hoped for something similar when I grabbed my phone and turned on the music. If I couldn't accomplish a nap, maybe I could at least find a smile in my little munchkin today. But this time something different happened..she got completely relaxed and content. I didn't find a smile or that nap, but I did find a little girl resting with her Father for a few precious minutes...something we both got to do this afternoon.

While I don't always understand in the midst of struggles, I am always amazed at the blessings to be found when God gets the glory throughout them.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Rachel Rimar, SAHM

I got a new job! Well...kind of...

I have decided that I should include my new credientials after my name like all of those fancy people who actually become certified in something get to do. I worked hard for that title and I'll continue to work hard to keep it, so...Rachel Rimar, SAHM it is!  :o)

But seriously, our precious baby girl has finally arrived to join our family in person. Brynlee Elizabeth was born on March 29th at 9:07am weighing in at 9lbs 8oz and 20 inches long. So far my only claim to ownership is delivery and dark hair. She is a spitting image of her daddy! We are so very in love and beyond grateful that God has entrusted us with such a task as raising this little bundle....who is growing too fast already!

So how is this whole stay at home mommy gig going, you ask?! Well, let's just say I'm thanking my lucky stars that I get to be with this little munchkin all day....and for chiropractic adjustments. I am truly blessed to have a husband who is willing to be away from his girls all day in order to provide for us and allow me to be home with her. Monday was my first official day on the job, since Phil went back to work then, and let's just say it was...uhh...hectic?! Bryn decided she wanted to boycott all naps from noon until 6pm. Not because she didn't need them, just because she was all outta whack. Thus being thankful for a chiropractor. Yesterday we both went in for an adjustment and holy moly was that ever needed! If you aren't a believer, become one! Baby girl is back on a much more regular (and sane) schedule.

Now, to answer a few of your burning questions...
How are you adjusting?
  Phil got to stay home for 2 weeks after Brynlee's arrival, which was fantastic. We had family in town for the first week and plenty of meals brought to help out. I also prepped lots of freezer crock pot meals to use for the next few weeks. I highly recommend doing this, whether you're expecting a baby or not (why didn't I do this sooner?!).

How is she sleeping?
  So far, so good. She slept awful in the hospital, but with round the clock annoyances who could sleep there?! Since being home she sleeps great at night. Now that we're back up to birth weight (and some) I'm letting her sleep longer between feedings at night. She'll usually go 4-5 hours. Every night she sleeps well I feel thankful...I know it could end/change any day, but here's to hoping it doesn't!

What do Charlie (the dog) and Bear (the cat) think?
  Charlie is protective, which we expected. He started getting very protective of me late in my pregnancy, so we figured he'd pass that along to Brynlee when she arrived. If she cries, he searches the house until he finds her and will typically lay down near her to make sure all is well. Bear could care less...I mean, he's a cat.

How has staying at home been?
  I've only had the official title for 3 days, but I feel beyond blessed as a stay at home mommy already. The stay at home wife part is what sometimes gets neglected at the moment, but Phil has been uber supportive and quite understanding. For now, Bryn and I are getting to know one another and what type of chaos our days will typically consist of. If I can manage to make the bed and think about's been a successful day in my book. Baby steps for some point soon I'll be able to care for this little girl and her daddy while he works hard to keep us at home. Our new normal is still in the works.

How'd you pick her name?
  I have always loved the uniqueness of Philbrook's name and the style of name that it is...a double name with a nickname or shortened name within it (Phil). We thought we'd try and find a name with that similar style. We came across Brynlee within the first few days of finding out we were expecting and it stuck. We'll call her Bryn for short. As for her middle name, Elizabeth, that's one that she'll share with me and my mother. I always knew I'd drop my last name when I got married. To me, sharing a middle name was more sentimental than keeping my maiden name in the mix.

What's her birth story?
  Ahh yes, I most certainly will answer this. But, let's save that for another's deserving of it's own post.