A Lesson from Martha

Working in full time ministry is hard. Working in full time ministry is tiring. Working in full time ministry can bring feelings of under appreciation. Don’t get me wrong, it is beyond rewarding, and I wouldn’t want my life any other way right now. However I think working in ministry or really any line of work can cause us to focus on just the job instead of focusing on the most important thing. You have thoughts of, “Just make it through!” “Just give godly counsel to so in so and be done.” “I can’t take that unexpected interruption right now! I have to do this one thing.” You focus on the job at hand instead of maybe focusing on the One who you are serving. You serve because it is the right thing to do instead of serving out of love for our Savior.

Personally I have been convicted of this of late. Some of my co-workers and friends are going through a Bible Study, and we ended up talking about Martha the other day. As we talked about her and one of the few if not the only instance the Bible mentions her, I thought, “Wow Lord, I am being Martha.” I get so focused on my ministry that I fail to notice where my priorities should be or even taking the opportunities that God gives me to be fed by the Holy Spirit.

I think most know the story of Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42). Jesus comes to visit their home. Martha was busy preparing a meal while Mary sat by Jesus’ feet soaking up His words. Martha becomes frustrated at Mary, and exclaims to the Lord that He should have made Mary help. Instead of rebuking Mary, Jesus responds to Martha’s frustration with a surprising answer. He explains to Martha that making of the meal was not needful instead she should have chosen the same as her sister. Mary chose to learn from the Lord which cannot be taken away from her. Mary chose eternal things.

Again, I think this can be translated into all walks of life. Wives, mothers, women who work outside the home, those who work with their families, those in ministry. What Martha was doing was not wrong, but she missed to opportunity to be fed by Jesus’ word. Her priorities were all wrong in the moment. She did not choose the most important thing. It got me to thinking. Is sitting at Jesus’s feet a priority in my life? Is it more important to me that I plow through my household chores, my job, and my social life without so much a thought towards eternal things? Those things I am doing aren’t wrong per se, but I have lost my sight on what really matters. To Martha physical help was what she needed. Jesus explained that the spiritual opportunity was more important.

This can be transferred even in everyday life. There are times where I need to get the laundry done, but my husband as asked me to watch a show with him. I often have to remind myself that maybe laundry can wait. Spending time with my husband is far more important that starting that load. I am becoming a mother, and something I want to work on is my priorities with my kids. Can dishes wait to read them a book or cuddle them to sleep?

What is important to you? Spending time with Jesus or stressing about daily life? Let’s not be Martha and focus on what is really important.

If this was a blessing to you, leave a comment and let me know how! Or share it with your friends! 😉

 

Q & A with Michael | The Husband Tag

Happy Weekend, lovelies! When I saw www.classicallycourtney.com do a Husband Tag ( a Q & A where he answers questions about us or me from his perspective), I knew I wanted to do one at some point. I do not know about you, but around this time of year I get overwhelmed with all the shopping and deals being thrown around. So I thought I would break up the materialism, and throw a fun post where you can get to know us a little bit more! Allow me to introduce my awesome husband, Michael! Michael works for Camp Joy as a recruitment and discipleship coordinator. We actually work as a husband and wife team which is fantastic! In our spare time, we love to spend time with friends, watch movies, and shop!

But enough of me just talking, let’s get into the Q & A! Michael answers will be bold, and my commentary will be in italics.

Also shout out to my gorgeous friend Amanda Ly Warren Photography for the wonderful pictures she took of us last May! I still love them so much!

Where did we meet? We met at Camp Joy in 2014!

How long did we date before we got married? About.. (long pause) a year and 10 months or so. He is so right! I was impressed! 🙂

When did we get married? August 20, 2016

What is your favorite feature of me? I like your eyes! I can tell when you are happy, when you are naughty, or stuff like that. 

What is your favorite quality about me? You are fun because I need fun in my life. I have the tendency to be more serious. This is true, but he is more fun than he gives himself credit. 🙂

What is my favorite color? Blue 

What is my favorite animal? Penguins

If I could travel anywhere in the world, where would I go? I know you would go back to South Africa, but you would want to take me with you. For those who don’t know, I grew up in South Africa, and I would love to go back sometime. He knows me well! 😉 And no, I don’t have an accent, but I have retained some of the different words that they say. 

What is my favorite food? Salad with Wishbone Italian dressing. I know this is weird! Little known fact, I used to want to be a salad chef. Ha!

What is my favorite TV show? House Hunters or Chopped. Yes, I love the food network and HGTV. 

What food do I not like? Eggplant.. I think this is funny actually. I don’t like these, but I think it is funny he picked this one to mention! Ha!

What is my shoe size? 7 or 7.5

What is my most commonly used phrase? You say “Yeppers’ a lot, but you quote a lot of movies too.  True!

What is my favorite restaurant? P.F. Chang. Oh yeah! So good!

If I could eat/drink anything everyday, what would it be? Cherry Pepsi and carrots/dip. Haha! Cherry Pepsi is my all time fav! He often will buy one when he is out and about for me. 

What is my favorite cereal? Lucky Charms

Where is my favorite place to shop? Target and Kohls

What is my favorite music? Michael Buble or Bing Crosby

What is my eye color? Bluish Green

Who is my best friend? Me! Yes, you are! 

Where was our first date? I came up to visit you at Maranatha Baptist University, and we went to a nereby park where your brother took pictures of us. Then we went to Applebees. First date picture below! Such babies! You could drive a bus between us too! 😉

Where did you meet my family for the first time? O’Hare Airport. He had met my father and middle brother previously, but only met the rest of my family after we were already dating for about 6 months. The life of a missionary kid!

Do we have any traditions together? Decorating our house for Christmas.

Who said I love you first? I did. We were on a river walk near your school, and we were sitting on a bench. I was shocked!

What was the first thing you noticed about me? How beautiful you were!

What is my job? You mentor and disciple the girls that volunteer at Camp Joy. You also recruit. I love my job! 🙂

If I were to collect anything, what would it be? Purses, shoes, clothes. Man, he is good!

Where I am from? A city in Wisconsin or South Africa. My hubby is one of the few people that understands that people who grew up as a missionary kid have a hard time deciding where to say they are from. 

Would I prefer to stay in on Friday night or go out? Go out!

What could I spend hours doing? Shopping  or looking at Instagram. Haha! I do love these things!

What is something you enjoy doing with me? Staying at home watching a good movie!

Why did you fall in love with me? Because you are a compliment to me. I love also that you serve the Lord!

I hope you all enjoy a little look into who we are! Leave a comment below of maybe something we have in common or what else you would like to see on the blog! 🙂

 

First Trimester Recap

We are almost to 14 weeks! I cannot believe how fast things have been! To be perfectly honest we did not know we were pregnant until we were already about 11 weeks along. I know I was rather oblivious. It really has been a world wind of announcing, and we are so grateful for all the love we have received. It has been so fun to dream and think how much our lives will change with a new little life!

One thing that this pregnancy has taught me is just how much I need to be relying on God! Mike will often ask me, “How is the baby doing?”. I have to say I do not know, and that is so hard for me. I like to be in control and to know everything. However, this baby is reminding me that God holds my life and his/her life in His hands. All I am to do is let go and trust. Such a hard but good reminder! Am I right, fellow sister in Christ?

Like many other moms, I am getting lots of questions about being pregnant, how I feel, and how I am choosing to go about some things. So I thought I would answer some of those questions!

Q: How are you feeling?

A: I have had no morning sickness, and I am beyond grateful for that! During the first trimester, I did struggle with headaches that bordered on migraines. I was able to combat a lot of them with sleep in a dark room. I also used peppermint oil, and that seemed to help a lot! As far as right now, I have not gained a lot of energy back as of yet. I am battling being always tired. I am doing my best to try to listen to my body, and take the time for a small nap if needed. I have struggled with back pain earlier than most women. Hot showers and warm baths have helped some with this.

Q: Have you had an ultrasound, and how did that go?

A: I have! I had one at 12 weeks! It made it so real for us to see our baby and hear the heartbeat. It was in the middle at 143 beats per min, so our OBGYN could not “predict” whether it’s a boy or girl. It amazed me how perfect their little bodies are. Our Lord really is fantastic! Our baby already has little hands, fingers, toes, feet, and a perfectly formed spine! I just couldn’t believe it! My OB is focusing on a lot of my diet which I am good with. I am trying to focus on eating calcium, protein, and unprocessed foods.

Q: Are you going to find out the gender?

A: Yes! We are so looking forward to finding out what this little one is! I know some people like the surprise, but I am a planner! I want to know so I can plan appropriately! Anybody like me? Michael would love a boy, and I just want a healthy baby. Fingers crossed we might find out in a couple weeks!

Q: Have you bought anything or planned for a nursery?

A: We have bought some items, but nothing major. I went to a couple high end resale stores and picked up some onesies, a portable changing pad, and a couple toys.  We will be doing a registry as we have family spread out across the Midwest.  Other than that, I am trying to wait until we know what the gender is before I really buy anything. We know for sure the nursery will be grey, but the accent color is still to be determined!

Q: Since you blog about modest fashion, what are some modesty hacks or things you have been loving since being pregnant?

A: SWING DRESSES! Girls, these are my all time favorite! They are so comfy, and relatively inexpensive. They are also so fun to accessorize! Second thing is skirt extenders! I loved these before I became pregnant, but there are some dresses out now that are shorter that the skirt extender really comes in handy with. I am sure I will have more as I continue to expand in my mid section! 😉 I purchased two maternity skirts from Thred Up, but I will save my thoughts for those in a review later!

Thank you for taking the time to read this! Also thank you for wanting to hear about our journey with Baby “I”! I am open to any advice! <3

Rachel

P.S. For you viewing pleasure, this is Baby “I” at 13 weeks!

 

 

 

 

 

Want Cheap, Cute Clothes?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recently I discovered SheIn.com, and I was pleasantly surprised! I always am on the lookout for good websites that deliver deals and some modest pieces. This website came through! I have added some pros and cons below for quick reference. You should check them out! Get a little modest retail therapy! 😉

Pros: SheIn has great prices! Seriously guys! I believe this skirt was about 13 dollars, and it still is! The shirt was I think the same! Shipping was relatively normal or comparatively to other websites. Items are decent quality. The skirt specifically is very well made. The shirt feels a little cheap, but I won’t be wearing it every day.

Cons: You have to sift through a lot of things! I know this isn’t a great deal breaker to some people, but I don’t always like sifting through ugly things to find the modest items. It runs SMALL! I ordered a large to be on the safe side, and it fit just right although I can’t eat any more donuts. 😉 Be mindful of this when ordering. The size chart will help!

Hope this gives you another website that provides some modest inexpensive items!

Love always, Rach xoxoxo

Some of my fav products right now on SheIn!

Hollow Cut Sweater

Box Pleated Satin Skirt

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contrast Crochet Hem Swing Dress

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Perfect Places for Photos & A Very Special Deal!

Hey my Lovelies! Happy Weekend! This post is specifically for my local gals, but seriously even if you aren’t local and are ever in the area these are great places to take in God’s creation too! And btw if you are ever in the area, look me up! I would love to meet and hang out! I wanted to hop on here an share some picture perfect spots that beautifully display the gorgeous fall colors here in my hometown, and I also have something stinkin’ excited for you so make sure you scroll all the way down! 😉

I have the privilege of living on Whitewater Lake, and let me tell you, it is gorgeous in the fall! It also has so many wonderful access points that give you so much color to gaze on! It is a quiet lake, and has so many beautiful inlets and islands!

I mean look at that sun sparkle on the water! <3

My next favorite place is very close to Whitewater Lake in fact it flows into the lake. It is called Rice Lake. There is a little island or like peninsula that juts out, and it holds so many special memories for Michael and I! In fact, Michael and I shared our first kiss here! Romantic right?! 😉 The little island thing is called Dr. O R Rice Memorial Picnic Area!

My top Favorite pick though for perfect picture spots near me is Bald Bluff Nature Trail! It is a short hike up a hill to give you such a stunning view of the surrounding farms and fall foliage! And whats better is my gorgeous photographer friend has scheduled mini-sessions to be taken at this exact spot come November 4th! Eeeeek! She is offering my followers $20 off of a $120 mini session! Guys, I repeat $20 off! You could get family pictures, get your girlfriends together, or have a quick sweetheart session for only $100! Head to her website to sign up for a slot! Click this link to be taken directly there! Amanda Ly Warren

Amanda is the photographer for you, and this location is the perfect place for some pictures! Amanda also has sessions open in the Watertown, WI area also on November 4th and 5th! Here is the link again to contact her for a spot! Amanda Ly Warren

As always, I love ya guys! I am only here because of you! Have a lovely weekend!

xoxo,

Rach

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Who is Ready to Party?!

Who wants to party?! If you do, have I got some good news for you! One of my favorite companies is Thirty-One, and I really want to share it with you all. Thirty-One was founded to help and empower women by giving them an opportunity to run their own successful business. This really is one of the many reasons why I love this company.

Now what about this party? I have a party going on all week! You can shop using this link! Seriously though, their products are great, and this is a perfect chance to stock up on some gorgeous items. Christmas is coming soon too, guys! What a wonderful way to get a head start on holiday shopping! Their special this month is awesome! You can get a weekend bag for $31 when they used to be $80?! Talk about a steal!

Anyways, I wanted to show you guys some of my favorite products! If you like one, you can get one for yourself too with the link above!

First off, the Rubie Mini: I love love this one! Such a good color for fall, and perfect for an easy on the go purse!

Midway Hobo: This one is my sister in laws favorite purse, and I mean look at it! Gorgeous!

Zip Top Organizing Utility Tote: By far one of my all time favorites! The pattern I have is no longer available, but I am loving this plaid one. I carry all my toiletries, shampoo, conditioner, hair straightener, and hair dryer in this bag. It all fits perfectly when I travel!

Large Utility Tote: This one is wife and momma’s dream! It is so good! It fits the world! I often take it to church with me as it is the perfect things to carry our youth group stuff.

Last but not least, the Littles Carry-All Caddy: This is such an amazing tote! It fits anywhere. You can put it in the car, closet, entryway, etc. It is the perfect way to organize! I have several!

If you see one of these products, and you are like me and say, “Yes, I need/want one of those! “, be sure to click this link to shop! I love supporting women in small business, and the woman I am supporting through this party is very dear to my heart. Check out the products, and maybe you will find something for yourself or a friend! Shop here!

Love,

Rachel

3 Top Places to Buy Fall Decor

It would seem like the world has exploded into fall, fall decor, and everything fall related! I have absolutely no problem with this! 🙂 In fact it is my favorite! However, I can get overwhelmed with decorating and what should I wear to go with the season! Such a stressful life! 😉 But in reality with all the stores shoving autumn decorations at you it is hard to know what to buy and where to buy it! Today I have narrowed down 3 favorite stores that sell great fall decor, as well as some beautiful products!

First, let’s talk about Target! I love all things that this place has from clothes, shoes, and fall decor! Here are some of my favorites!

Adorable Sign

 

 

 

 

Leaf Garland

 

 

 

 

 

Plaid Pumpkin

 

 

 

 

Gold Pumpkin

 

 

 

 

 

My second top place to shop for fall decor is Hobby Lobby! I get a lot of my decorative leaves, fall florals, and cute signs! Here are some of my favorite picks!

Sign

 

 

 

 

Galvanized Tray

 

 

 

 

Fall Magnolia Leaf Wreath

 

 

 

 

Finally, I love to shop at local farmers markets or road stands! You get to support local growers, and also enjoy the freshness of the products! So find your local farmers market or road stand! I got this adorable pinkish orange pumpkin at a local road stand! Isn’t it adorable?!

I hope you all find this a little helpful! Drop a comment to let me know what you think, and Happy Shopping! 🙂

Love,

Rachel

 

3 Ways to Style a Graphic Tee

I love graphic tees, but I struggle to style them other than slapping on a jean skirt and some cute sneakers. Although that is a good look, I used to severely limit myself on endless possibilities! Shame on me! 😉

The other day I decided to try and find other ways to style them! I came up with three ways that anyone can replicate! Ready? Good!

Look #1:

First look is really what I used to do. Just a simple jean skirt and some cute sneakers! I still love this look, and it really is adorable and casual! Honestly, it is a perfect outfit for errands or just hanging out around your house!

Look #2:

All the heart eyes for this look! Tulle skirt and pretty jewelry dress this shirt up and make it so much fun! I paired some booties with this skirt to give a little fall vibes to the whole ensemble.

Look #3

All time favorite right here! I decided to tie a knot in this shirt to add a trendy different look! I kept the necklace on and added some sandals. When Wisconsin finally decides to cool down, I would add booties and a cardigan!

I hope this gives you some ideas of styling your own graphic tees! I would love to see any of your looks! Please feel free to pin and share! I will love you forever! 😉 Links down below!

Later Gator, 😉

Rachel

Graphic Tee: http://www.jane.com Tulle Skirt: Similar One Blush Pink Skirt: Similar One on Sale!

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Fall Bucket List

Eeeeeek! Fall is just around the corner, and just like everyone else, I am so excited! I just can’t get enough of the crisp air, the gorgeous colors, and the feeling of endless possibilities flying like crunchy leaves! I thought I would round up my bucket list for the fall! I grew up in South Africa where there was not really a fall season, so there are many things I still haven’t done yet. I would love any and all recommendations for your favorite things to do in the Autumn!

  1. Start a journal for blessings
  2. Go apple picking
  3. Collect & press leaves
  4. Paint or carve pumpkins
  5. Bake pies
  6. Drive around and see the fall colors
  7. Jump in a leaf pile
  8. Have a bonfire
  9. Make caramel apples
  10. Decorate with fall flair
  11. Make homemade apple cider
  12. Visit a farmers market
  13. Stargaze
  14. Burn a lot of fall candles
  15. Fall DIY
  16. Fall photoshoot
  17. Try a new pumpkin recipe
  18. Organize house
  19. Work on flat lays
  20. Canoe on Whitewater Lake
  21. Sit with my Hubby next to the fire
  22. Make S’mores
  23. Go for a bike ride
  24. Find the perfect fall nail polish color
  25. Find the perfect lipstick color

Maybe you should do some of these things too! Let me know what you have done and what you would like to do this fall! I would love to swap ideas and experiences! 🙂

With love,

Rach

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