… the source

One thing I absolutely love to do is sit with the Lord. I love reading my Bible, I love pulling scriptures that settle my soul or ignite worship. I love reading stories of God’s faithfulness + commitment to and Christ’s love for the “us” of old, the “us” of now, and the “us” that is waiting to come. I love that he loves us in-spite of who we are in our sinfulness, our mistakes, our brokenness & the brokenness that comes out that disrupted space.

I love that He loves me.
and, in my time with the Lord I get to revel in his focus for me, his plans for me, and stretch out in the freedom of total acceptance. 

And, for a moment, mama….
I want you to think about you, too.

…. while you consider this scripture:
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. 
Then, you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. 
Romans 15: 13

Consider that when we are feeling overwhelmed from the laundry and dishes and taxi-ing.
When the current struggles in toddlerhood (I mean, childhood in general)
seem hopeless and never ending.
When there isn’t a man, a partner, and shoulder.
Or when the shoulder is struggling itself.
Or just being annoying.
When that something you’re dealing with is too much.

Trust that we have a hope. Then anchor yourself to it.
A source that deeply desires to fill us completely to overflowing.
The visual I get is a child planning to pour their own juice or milk.
They are excitedly anticipating  pouring their own juice from a heavy, full container.
And, if your kids are like mine, a little isn’t enough. That cup has to be full.
They are so confident and proud of carrying that container to the table (or spot on the floor, let’s be real) where they have strategically placed that small cup and begin to pour.
…. to overflowing.

Remember how God so beautifully gives us living and breathing examples that show us who he is.
Like our children, He is completely and utterly excited about us.
And, he desires greatly to pour out his peace and joy into our vessels.
To overflowing.
But not because he isn’t strong enough to carry the pitcher and control the pour.
The juice spilling over that small plastic cup, spending across the table, and dripping onto the floor isn’t an accident.
Or, when that cup is at the lowest possible point – on the floor – and tips over at the weight and speed of the pour and causes the milk to spread under the table, refrigerator, and across the floor…  it didn’t happen because someone wasn’t being monitored.
It was, like my girls say, “on purpose.”

The overflow out of the cup.
The cup tipping over.
The juice spreading across the table and under the fridge.
The Chik-Fil-A lemonade wasted on the floor leaving a sticky mess
is all a very intentional act to:
1. allow us to feel (fill?) his love.
2. equip us
3. share

But, we cannot do that if we aren’t allowing ourselves to be filled and healthy.

Devotionals are incredible spaces to reflect and are an awesome tool to help you learn more about who God is. Books are my love language. They are full of wisdom, perspective, and testimony.
But, the Word of God should be our foundation, everything else a reference that supports the Word.

Fill yourself up on the Word.
Eat your dinner first. Snacks and dessert come later.
Let’s get to the know the person and not just inhale the chatter we hear others speaking.

Be well so that you can live well. Think well. Speak well. Endure well.

If you know my older two…. if you’d had the absolute pleasure of meeting them, you will immediately recognize that they are happy and joyful. Actively happy and joyful. They love each other and love the Lord.

I have been immensely blessed by a couple at my church who just have taken to my family. They spoke incredible life into me as a mother, provider, and woman for an hour after church last Sunday.

And, that conversation boiled down to this:
“Your children are as happy, beautiful, and incredible as they are because of who you are.”
Now, yes, while they all have incredibly present fathers and family who pour into them…..
Me, as their mother, impact and shape them in ways that other people do not and cannot.

And, my friends are right.
And, the same is for you mama.

What we pour into our hearts and minds is going to overflow onto your family, work space, friend spaces, and impact the stain we leave behind. Even water leaves an outline.

The impact I leave can stress me out. I can worry so much about the outcome that I’m hustling to be (read: look, sound, respond, speak, create, earn) the best and what “right” and “successful” looks like to the masses, to myself, to my children at any given point that I do not allow the Lord space to reign and work.

Wine doesn’t work hard to stain.
Chick-fil-a lemonade doesn’t try to be sticky.
It just is because of the ingredients it is made of.

Same for us.When we allow the Lord to fill us to overflowing, we become new creatures daily.
When we fill our hearts and mind with truth – in written word, music, encouragement from our people – we pour out that truth and life giving words.

And, because it’s no secret that I supplement and balancing + fueling my body has made an incredible difference in my emotional and physical health.
When we are not physically and emotionally well, we cannot be all that we are called to be.
YES. I can be loving even though I’m constipated and poop once a week.
YES! I can serve well with high blood pressure.
YES. I can be productive as I battle through exhaustion daily.
Yeeeees, I can be present and attend all the events and still snap on my kids and
have horrible mood swings.
I’m still going to heaven even when stress, anxiety, and depression are daily battles.
But, what quality of life is that?
Especially when we are called to be love.
We can’t be love and feel like crap at the same time.

Like many of you, I have to operate at a high level and under great stress daily.
There is no one at this house to shoulder a thing.
But, even if that isn’t the case, how I feel impacts my responses, my thoughts, and productivity.

I thought that the issues I was struggling with were just “a part of life as Alaina” and this is what it was.
Those issues aren’t an issue anymore. My responses aren’t the same.

And, I am the mama and woman I am because Jesus is mending + strengthening my heart
and Plexusis healing my gut and balancing my hormones.

The Lord delights in you, mama.
He wants to comfort you, encourage you.
Lift up your head and strengthen you.
He longs for time with you,
to be the source that fills you to overflowing.
For you. Just for you.
Just because he loves you so much.
Just so that you can be filled with him.
AND, so that you can be a source of love that points back to Him.

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the Plexus difference

super sat 2 If you’ve never heard of Plexus, I’m glad you’re here.
If you’ve avoided/ignored or don’t believe in us, please stay a while.
If you have but have opted out of jumping on board as an ambassador or customer, grab a seat.
Either way, thanks for coming.
You’ll like it here.

Plexus is an all natural health and wellness company and it will change the quality of your life. That sounds drastic and overly dramatic, but I promise you…. if you were to begin on these products and give them a fair shot (drink the suggested amount of water, make good meal choices, & take products as suggested) for at least two months, you would see a world of difference in how you look & feel and how your body operates.

 My friend and I at Super Saturday

The longer I’m a part of this business, the more my passion grows and the harder I work. These products are truly improving the health of so many people without the use of medications or unhealthy fad diets. Many ambassadors and their friends and families’ doctors are taking them off of medication because of the change Plexus had made in their overall health. Plexus is soothing eczema, reducing IBS symptoms, clearing acne, reducing headaches/migraines, bettering nightly sleep, easing PMS/cycle pains (I have endometriosis, the struggle was real!!), addressing thyroid issues (bye, bye Synthroid), and balancing blood sugar/cholesterol/lipid levels. And, that’s a short list.

While Plexus isn’t a miracle or magic pill, it’s a tool that has helped thousands upon thousand of people turn their lives around when they chose to be committed to consistency. It’s been a game changer and how so many people have been able to improve their health. Not slightly improve, but drastically improve. So much so that the quality of their everyday is better than it’s been in years.

One of the friends I’ve met through Plexus, Ro’Derica, has an amazing story to tell about how Plexus completely turned her life around.
Here it is.
“Growing up, I had always been a little thick. People would often say, “Oh you’re pretty, for a big girl, or you have a pretty face.” My thought to these “compliments” were, Is this really a compliment? Why can’t I just be pretty rather than only certain parts of me? That never stopped me from being me. I was very social, head cheerleader, popular in school, and genuiely well-liked. People often said they loved how confident I was. Truth is, I have never been fully satisfied with my weight. No matter how well I ate, how much I worked out (which was frequently), I was still thicker. As a adult I had learned to accept my curves, but I still needed to get to the root cause of the extra weight. My friend Angela introduced me to Plexus and explained gut health. My ears perked up and I started taking the products. Within a week, I was sleeping better, eliminating regularly, and had increased energy. It feel good to seem normal again. As the months passed, the inches and pounds melted away. and I went from a size 24/26 to an 18/20. I had always eaten healthy, but I started drinking 1/2 my body weight in ounces of water daily along with taking my products consistently. I am thankful for Plexus for showing me what healthy really is. My gut loves me for it now and I can be a model for my daughter. :)”
rodericaWhile Ro’Derica approved this message, what she didn’t tell me is how her quality of life has been improved, but I can imagine.
I can imagine how even though the beautiful, friendly woman on the left was confident, she was probably uncomfortable.
I can imagine the disappointment and sadness she felt when she couldn’t keep up with her small, active daughter.
I can imagine that while she was confident in who she is and the person God created her to be, that she knew that her health had to improve but didn’t want to be disappointed and discouraged when (possibly another) diet failed. AGAIN.
I know this woman wanted to be able to walk.
She wanted to be comfortable in restaurants, shopping in stores without constant reminders of her size.
The woman on the right will be forever grateful that the woman on the left loved herself enough to make a choice that would change her life.
A choice that wouldn’t require insane caloric intakes, meal replacements, & ridiculous food regimens.
Her health is improving, which will increase the her chances of being able to enjoy her friends and family a bit longer without heart issues or complications.
That woman on the left is going to be able to enjoy the spring and summer outdoors with her daughter in a way she wouldn’t have been able to before.
That woman on the right is more comfortable shopping for clothes. And, choosing a seat.
I believe she feels less joint and back pain. I can imagine she’s able to hug a bit tighter.
And, pedicures are more comfortable, too.

A quality of life change has occurred.
And, she’s not even done yet.

Now, think about the quality of your days.
Think about how making one simple choice, how saying “yes” can change your life.
It doesn’t have to be a confident “YES!” you shout from the top of your voice.
I gave a haphazard ‘this probably won’t work or last’ kind of “yes.”
You may whisper yours.
But, will you say it??

Do me a favor.
Think of how you feel each day.
(Don’t limit your thoughts to weight… simply think about how you feel overall.)
Think about and  imagine how you want to feel.
Then, email me so we can talk about how Plexus can help you get there.
unashamedgrowth@gmail.com

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SHOP SMALL SATURDAY!!

shopsmall2

Heck yes!! When I tell you I love, love, love shopping small!! It’s the most fun and gratifying experience!

I have shopped small for the girls since before they were born (ha) and I have formed real relationships with quite a few of the mamas behind these amazing brands! I’ve also shopped small for myself and I never, ever regret it!

A promise was made during my Periscope today about my favorite shops and I’m making good on it!!!

Here are my favorite baby shops:

@twinkiebands
@potatofeet
@augie and lola
@bloomieshandmade
@rubyblueoriginals
@andysachs

My favorite small shops for mamas are:
@fightappareldesigns
Ezra + Eli
Loved by Hannah and Eli

My girls Danielle and Mary keep my blog up to date and any graphic needs I have poppin!
Danielle Burkleo
Mary Hess

I had an idea or two about tees that I wanted to see come to life that didn’t quite fit in the Arise brand Krystle and I started … but, we definitely they should be printed and sold. So, here they are. One of a few that will be sold right here on my blog! I love that I have the space and ability to have these ideas that roll around in my imagination printed on tees. It’s amazing and I’m so excited!

shopsmall3
We, teachers, don’t have the easiest jobs ever and it’s always nice to be shown the appreciation you guys feel on a daily! You can find there shirt over here… it’s a perfect time to buy for your kiddo’s teacher as the season of giving is upon us!

And, of course, I talk non-stop about Plexus…. you can find more info on that amazing-ness over here.
So good if you’re struggling with blood sugar issues, diabetes, irritability, intestinal issues (IBS, diverticulitis, etc.), and AI disease (Lupus, MS), skin inflammation (eczema, acne, psoriasis), food/sugar allergies, thyroid issues, or need to lose/gain (yes, gain) weight, etc. It’s amazing all around! Check it out!
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All so very exciting!!!
I hope you guys genuinely consider supporting us mamas who are just doing what we love!!!

Have an amazing Thanksgiving Day!
Gobble, gobble!

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