Apr 25, 2014

Five on Friday!

It has been a fantastic week and we are going to have an even better weekend! Can't wait!

I had my retreat day for the month on Wednesday. I love those days. They are so relaxing and I just love spending the entire day reading, journaling, and watching sermons. During this retreat day I spent a lot of time reading about forgiveness and conflict. You can read the post I wrote on Wednesday here. Love the way that God teaches me things every day. 

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Yesterday my lovely friend Bree and I went and got pedicures. Love our girl dates. It was so relaxing and when we got back to her house, our husbands had got pizza for us! 

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Last night we went to a show at a coffee shop in town called Sidecar. A friend of ours from church was playing for a charity event. It was so fun and relaxing. Love shows in coffee shops! 

This is Holly, she is the proud wife of our friend who is playing! 

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Tonight I am having a sleepover at my house with my college small group girl! I can't wait! We are going to eat, watch movies and go bowling! Love this group of ladies and can't wait to spend time with them. 

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We are getting a kitten tomorrow! I cannot wait to pick our little sweetie up. Stay tuned for the name! 

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So excited for the weekend! I will post an updated picture of her when we pick her up! 

Have a great day beautiful readers! 



Apr 23, 2014

Forgiveness in marriage

Today I am going to take a break from my Wedding Wednesday post and share a piece of my heart with you. Don't worry; I will begin again next week! Stay tuned for a wedding shower recap! 

I am taking another retreat day for my job today and one of the subjects that I have been focusing on is forgiveness in marriage...

"Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also forgiven you." 
Ephesians 4:32

My husband and I had a fight this week. I hate fighting. Like a LOT. Without going into too much detail I will tell you that it was about something stupid. We both reacted poorly and we both said things we regretted later. Fortunately, we have not had many of these moments since we got married but I think that is why it scared me so much. It really upset me that we reacted that way to a stupid argument and that we were both being so selfish. I should have been more respectful of him and he should have been more loving to me. We both sinned and we needed to forgive each other. 

Marriage has definitely taught me the importance of forgiveness. It definitely has presented more opportunities to practice forgiveness than any of my other relationships. To forgive means "to give up resentment or the desire to punish." When we forgive someone, specifically our spouse, we can experience a blessing and an intimacy that could only come from God. Once we forgive, that's it. Feelings may still be raw, but by forgiving them you give up the desire to hold it against them. Just like we choose to love each other deeply every day we also much choose to forgive each other every single day. 

Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” 
Matthew 18: 21-22

Conflict stinks but it cannot always be avoided. The only way to avoid conflict is to avoid relationships. The more relationships you have the more conflict you will have. So it makes sense that you will have conflict with the people you are closest to. Meaning that you will have conflict with your spouse but we must always fight to seek reconciliation and forgiveness with them when conflict occurs. We might not always feel like forgiving the other person because we want to win… but marriage is not fighting with each other in order to win. It is about fighting for each other and realizing you are on the same team.

We need to cling to the hope in Jesus and seek forgiveness from our spouses and continue forgiving them just like Jesus forgave and continues to forgive us.

Thanks for reading along today!! 



Apr 21, 2014

Recipe Recap!

Today I am going to share a new favorite recipe of mine that I tried for the first time yesterday! I made this for our dessert on Easter Sunday and it was a big hit! 
It is the Caramel Apple Cheesecake and it is incredible! I got this recipe off of Pinterest and can originally be found here.

2 cups Flour
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
2 Sticks Butter softened

3 packages Cream Cheese (8 oz.) softened
1 cup Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
3 Eggs

3 Granny Smith Apples peeled, cored and diced into small pieces
2 tbsp Sugar
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg

1 cup Brown Sugar (packed)
1 cup Flour
1/2 cup Quick Oats
1 stick Butter Softened

Caramel Topping (to drizzle)

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Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9X13 baking pan or cover it with aluminum foil.
Combine flour and brown sugar in medium sized bowl and cut in butter with 2 forks or a pastry blender until crumbly. Press mixture into prepared pan & bake for 15-20 minutes.
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In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, vanilla & sugar until smooth. Add eggs 1 at a time mixing to combine. Pour mixture on to baked crust.
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In a medium bowl, toss Apples, sugar and cinnamon until combined. Sprinkle apple pieces evenly over cream cheese mixture.
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Combine brown sugar, flour, quick oats and softened butter in a medium bowl until crumbly. Sprinkle topping evenly over your apple layer.
Bake for 45-60 minutes or until filling is set. (You can check it by just slightly jiggling the pan). Allow to cool and then place in refrigerator 4 hours or overnight. (I left it in the fridge overnight and it was perfect!) Remove from pan and cut into bars. Drizzle with caramel topping.
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All that was left after lunch. Mmmm! 


Apr 18, 2014

Five on Friday: He has Risen!

Good morning friends!
Linking up with Five on Friday. 

Thankful for my Savior today. He paid it all. I owe it all to Him. 
How often do we sing this song but never think of the words. Sometimes you just need to see a simple phrase of the song to remember that Jesus has paid it all. What a sweet reminder

Happy 11 month Anniversary to my love. Jordan, these last 11 months have been the best of my life and I can't even describe how thankful I am that you are my husband and best friend. I can't believe that we will be celebrating one year of marriage in only a month! I love you honey and I can't wait to celebrate tomorrow! 

On Sunday is my beautiful friends birthday! Happy Birthday Keshia! I love you girl! 


Today was a Starbucks iced coffee kind of day. I don't normally do selfies so this is a rare occurrence. 

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Working on my garden tomorrow! Yippie Yippie!! 
Wouldn't it be awesome if I could make it look like this? Ha! It won't but I am ok with that. 
Ideas for vegetable garden Malissa's: Garden Dresser

Happy weekend! Don't forget to celebrate the real reason for Easter! 
He has Risen! 

                    Post your Prayer Requests on Instapray. Pray with the whole world ---------> www.instapray.com



Apr 17, 2014

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Comparison is the thief of joy
I would love to share something that has been on my heart lately.

I love feeling joyful. I often feel so close to God when I am joyful. It is beautiful, refreshing and peaceful.

"Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding."
2 Corinthians 10:12

I wish I could say I have joy all the time and that it is never a struggle for me to find joy. But that would not be true. I saw the picture above on Pinterest the other day and had to post it. I have heard this quote many times but for some reason, this time it jumped out at me and almost slapped me in the face. How often do I start comparing myself to others or comparing my relationship with my husband to other peoples relationships? Unfortunately, the answer is a lot. It seems like every other day I am seeing someone else that I can compare myself to. What does that do? Steals my joy. It makes me second guess every decision I make for the rest of the day and it makes me self conscious of what I look like, how I am dressed, what I say, where I live and what I write. It even sometimes makes me question my relationship with my husband...how scary is that? I feel like I need to ask myself, "what's the point?!" Why do I consistently make myself miserable by comparing myself to other people, often to people I don't even know?!!

Because I care so much about what people think. I care about what others think about me, my husband and our relationship. It is always seems to be on my mind when I am with other people. Did they think what I said was stupid? Is my hair a mess? Did I make them uncomfortable or mad?

I hate that I have a tendency to try to impress people or make myself seem perfect and without flaws. I am never going to succeed at being perfect so why do I even try to make myself seem that way?

"For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ."
Galations 1:10

I have been so convicted of this lately, especially with my blogging. I started blogging on a more consistent basis about 4-5 months ago. It has been a consistent joy in my life and I have really loved sharing my heart with ya'll and hearing from others through their blogs. But sometimes that joy gets stolen because of comparison. I find myself worrying way too much about how many followers I have and whether or not people will like my posts. I compare my background and fonts and pictures to every blog I see and it has started to steal my joy of blogging.

 Now, I want you to know that I have absolutely nothing against trying to grow your blog and learn new ways to get more followers but I can sometimes take it too far. I can become apathetic about my blog because in comparison to others it is not much. That is not the reason I started blogging the first place and I refuse to let myself get to that point. The reason I started blogging in the first place was to try and encourage women in their faith and marriages and to share my life with family and friends. 

"Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves."
Philippians 2:3

The only way I can give up control and stop comparing myself to others, is to give it over to my Heavenly Father who loves me just the way I am. He created me and he adores me. How incredible is that? We do not deserve this unconditional love and patience but He still gives it. How awesome would it be if every time we wanted to compare ourselves to someone else we stopped and prayed for that person?!! That is my challenge for you and for me today! 

God is fully aware that you and I are not perfect.  God is also fully aware that the people you think are perfect are not.  Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Thanks for hearing my heart today. 

Let's be friends! If you and I don't know each other yet, please don't hesitate to drop a comment with your info! I would love to discover your blog and hear what the Lord is teaching you!



Apr 16, 2014

Wedding Wednesday: The Bachelorette party!

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It is that time of week again! Wedding Wednesday!!
I cannot believe that my one year anniversary is in a little over a month! So crazy how fast time goes!

Today I am going to tell you about my wonderful and crazy fun bachelorette party! My lovely sister and two of my beautiful best friends planned my party and they did such an AMAZING job! They went above and beyond and I can't believe how much work they put into it! They kept the theme a secret from me and it was so fun to be surprised!

Bachelorette Party
April 20, 2013

They scheduled the party for about a month before our wedding. That was a good time frame for me because I didn't want to be stressed out while celebrating and I knew that if we had it close to the wedding it would stress me out. I was going to go to my last dress fitting that Friday night and met my mom and a few other friends in Ankeny that night for supper after my fitting. The next day was my party!

My sister had planned a fun scavenger hunt at a mall in town it was so fun! We were split into teams and had a list of items to find in different stores and then we had to take pictures of them to send back to her. It was such a great idea and VERY fun! :) After that we had a few hours to do some shopping.

What a wonderful group of women! I am so thankful for them!

Unfortunately I am having a hard time finding my camera with the rest of the pictures of the mall on it but will upload those as soon as I find it!

After the mall we headed back to one of their houses to get ready for dinner.

They had decorated the house and it looked awesome! I then found out that the theme of my bachelorette party was BARBIE!!

How cute is that?
 It definitely brought back memories from when I was a little girl and we played Barbies for hours and hours!

All dressed up for dinner

We ended up going to a cute little Italian restaurant for dinner. It was delicious and we had such a great time with awesome conversation.

After dinner we went back to the house and played games, had some girly drinks, opened lots and lots of gifts and hung out. It was perfect!

SO thankful for these amazing ladies and their friendship to me! A special thanks to Betsy, Loretta and Julia for planning this party! You did an amazing job and it was so special for me!

Love you all so much!

Thanks for reading along and I will post the rest of the pictures from this party very soon! Stay tuned for next week when I post about my second shower.



Apr 11, 2014

Five on Friday!

I just cannot wait for the weekend. Helllooo sleeping in, shopping for antiques, and good coffee. 

This week has been filled with get together's and lots of hangouts. So that is my theme for this week! 

I hung out with a bunch of girls from our community group and we had such a wonderful time! We drank wine, made homemade pizzas, snacked on a LOT of food and just hung out! It was such a refreshing and relaxing time. After we got done hanging out at one of their houses we decided that we didn't want to go home so we went to a local brewery in town and hung out for a little longer. I hand't had a girls night in a while and I definitely needed it. 

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We celebrated my parents 30th Wedding Anniversary last weekend and it was a blast. We went out to eat at an amazing brewery and spent the rest of the night at my sisters house. It was a wonderful evening. 

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On Monday, our community group had a meal night and hang out. We are so blessed to have such an amazing community. 

On Wednesday night we had a couple from our church over to our house. They are engaged and getting married in June. Since we are still newlyweds, both Jordan and I love having engaged couples over for dinner to talk about marriage and the things that they are nervous or excited about. We also played a pretty intense game of Sequence. Such a wonderful night full of laughter and food.

Tonight we are hanging out with some close friends of ours and staying at their house afterwards. I am so thankful for their friendship and this time in our lives that we can hang out with so many other young married couples. This season is definitely a blessing.

Have a beautiful weekend friends!



Apr 9, 2014

Wedding Wednesday: Engagement Pictures!

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Hey Ya'll! (wish I was southern!)

Today I am following in my Wedding Wednesday fashion and posting some of our engagement pictures!
After we got engaged, one of the things I was super excited about was that we would get to take engagement pictures. I immediately started looking up poses on Pinterest and thinking about what we were going to wear. 

When Jordan and I were dating we enjoyed going on day trips together. It was so wonderful to be able to get away somewhere and spend the day together. One of our favorite places to go is Galena, Illinois. If you have never been there, you need to go! It is a beautiful and quaint little town with so much charm and preciousness (is that a word?). We traveled there multiple times while dating and loved it! SO.... I knew who I wanted to take our pictures and she just happens to live pretty close to Galena. April, from Blue Sky Photographs , did our pictures and it was really great to work with her since she was a family friend of mine! It was such a beautiful and perfect day and we had so much fun! 

I chose both of our outfits and I got most of it at Kohls and Target.

Without further adieu...

Engagement Pictures
September 14, 2012

My dress is from Kohls. Jordan already had this outfit.

My outfit is from Target. Jordan's outfit is from Kohls.

My shirt is from Kohls. 


I love how our photographer captured so many awesome moments! 

Thanks for stopping by! Next Wednesday I will be posting about my bachelorette party.